French/Belgian comics discussion!

Discuss the classic genre that turned comics into a major industry.

French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby Charliedog » November 5th, 2011, 12:33 am

I'm not sure if there's a thread for this already but I don't think so!

Soo basically, if you've read anything along the lines of Astérix and Obélix, Tintin, Boule et Bill, Lucky Luke, Spirou et Fantasio, Titeuf, Gaston, etc, feel free to talk about it here! :D
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby Froken Keke » November 5th, 2011, 4:16 am

I've always loved Tintin. I've read every single one of those several times, and own almost every one. I basically learned to read with Tintin.
I love that comic so much, that I wouldn't hesitate to claim that it's the best comic ever, which I've done here sometime before. Hergé is a fucking genius.

However, I'm not really too familiar with the other French and Belgian comics of the time. I've read some Asterix and Lucky Luke, and I'm well familiar with those characters and their world, but to me they never came up to that Tintin level of brilliance.
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby gevans1961 » November 5th, 2011, 4:53 am

I own Joann Sfar's version of "The Little Prince"
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I remember reading some of the Tintin comics when I took a french course. They were the French version of course.
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Also, "Blueberry" by moebius. I wish these comics would get a better english publication
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby avian-reader » November 5th, 2011, 5:39 am

Not sure if I've read any comics (apart from the Tintin in space one), but I remember some of the cartoons. Tintin freaked me out when I was little because tons of animals were being shot and killed in a cartoon (!).

The coolest episode of the Smurfs however was by far "The Purple Smurfs". It was cool, because it was such a serious crisis with real threat; took me years to find it again though. I also find it really cool that the original "Black Smurfs" comic predates Dawn of The Dead, making it one of the first I guess, alongside I Am Legend.

EDIT: Oh wow, turns out The Spill also knows about that episode :D
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby redford stone » April 20th, 2013, 2:34 am

I've been getting into florent maudoux's freak squeele a good deal lately. anyone else like this series?
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby xX-DragonFairy-Xx » September 25th, 2013, 4:57 pm

oh I grew up with Tintin! My dad is french canadian and he grew up with nice hard back french ones, but I think his parents gave them away a long time ago. Anyway, we have some paperback ones, and I watched the cartoons sometimes too.

Froken Keke wrote:Hergé is a fucking genius.


Y'know Hergé played a big part in Andy Warhols artwork? Him and walt Disney were Warhol's biggest inspirations, and the Hergé even met with him a few times, which then inspired Hergé to start Tintin and Alph-art.

...yaaaaaay Tintin!

I would like to find more translated french comics, European comics are so pretty, but I dunno where to start looking.
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby Oly-RRR » November 16th, 2014, 6:49 pm

Holy crap I just found this thread!! :mrgreen: Franco-Belgian comics were a major influence on my art, I read some Asterix, Pif and Tintin as a kid, when I became a teenager I loved W.I.T.C.H. (and later Sky Doll and Monster Allergy) mostly because of the art and then I discovered both older and newer series - Spirou and Fantasio, Blacksad, Jerome K.J. Bloche, Violine, the works of Gradimir Smudja, Emile Bravo and so on.

And then the only book shop that regularly supplied bande dessinee in my town closed down a few years ago and now I go without adding a new comic to my bookshelf for months. :(
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby mraab » November 20th, 2014, 2:45 pm

Oly-RRR wrote:Holy crap I just found this thread!! :mrgreen: Franco-Belgian comics were a major influence on my art, I read some Asterix, Pif and Tintin as a kid, when I became a teenager I loved W.I.T.C.H. (and later Sky Doll and Monster Allergy) mostly because of the art and then I discovered both older and newer series - Spirou and Fantasio, Blacksad, Jerome K.J. Bloche, Violine, the works of Gradimir Smudja, Emile Bravo and so on.

And then the only book shop that regularly supplied bande dessinee in my town closed down a few years ago and now I go without adding a new comic to my bookshelf for months. :(

I loved Asterix. My junior-high French teacher recommended reading it in French for practice. Tried that, then started picking up the English translations, and there was a moment of "ooooohh!" when I realized the main problem I was having with the untranslated versions were that I didn't understand the humorous puns and other references. The English translations basically inserted a buncha jokes and references that were going to make sense to the English-speaking audience, but weren't in the originals, if my bad French reading was to be trusted... That was the first time I realized how much a good translator is responsible for.
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby Oly-RRR » November 21st, 2014, 10:05 pm

mraab wrote:I loved Asterix. My junior-high French teacher recommended reading it in French for practice. Tried that, then started picking up the English translations, and there was a moment of "ooooohh!" when I realized the main problem I was having with the untranslated versions were that I didn't understand the humorous puns and other references. The English translations basically inserted a buncha jokes and references that were going to make sense to the English-speaking audience, but weren't in the originals, if my bad French reading was to be trusted... That was the first time I realized how much a good translator is responsible for.

Humour is hard to translate! Actually that's the issue with translations in general - you can make them sound either natural or accurate, you always end up compromising one or the other. My family wanted me to go into language studies and actually hoped I won't go into art seriously (to be fair as soon as they saw I wasn't budging they supported me all the way even though they weren't very happy about my choice and I'll always be grateful for that, not every parent can do that). I used to get asked to help translating comics into English and after doing it regularly for some time I realised that I dislike the process - in my head I just think in two separate languages (or a mix of both) but I rarely have to actually translate something... I think biggest translation issues is more about pool of cultural references than vocabulary (so translating a comic with jokes and references that were neither from British English nor American English began to look almost like script doctoring at some point and that was really not my place). Really I'm still glad I didn't go into translating even when I feel tired of my current job. :D

But back to the theme of the thread, I don't like newer Asterix much... The art is good (I was about to say "got better" but it mostly got more detailed and it's possible to print a wider range of colours these days) but the writing is not the same. Or maybe it's just writing for a different generation, dunno, never met anyone who was significantly younger than me and read Asterix. It doesn't feel like an old series much though - I mean Tintin is a classic but when you look at it you can feel the old times and have to adjust to that rhythm when reading.
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby mraab » November 22nd, 2014, 12:35 pm

Oly-RRR wrote:Tintin is a classic but when you look at it you can feel the old times and have to adjust to that rhythm when reading.

I like that about it. Sometimes reading an old novel can be difficult, especially if the language and construction are noticeably archaic. But I've found having patience and really immersing myself in it can transport me into the story the way some more recent works can't. Bram Stoker's "Dracula", Shelley's "Frankenstein", the works of Jules Verne, H.G. Wells and H.P. Lovecraft all seemed daunting to me, but rewarded the effort I put into reading them. Old comics are the same, I think. The best classic comix creators reward patience and effort on the part of the reader. I think it might be easier to get into old comix than old books, since we are such a visual species, but I dunno. Anyway, I got that feeling from reading Tintin, Blueberry, Corto Maltese, and Terry and the Pirates, to name a few. Unfortunately, as far as reading novels is concerned, I rarely have the time anymore to devote myself to that kind of active reading.
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby Lassek » November 22nd, 2014, 2:44 pm

Bit of a shame that Gaul stuff doesn't penetrate to the Anglosphere as much as it would deserve. There's a small selection of BD in the largest bookstore here (in French); I spotted De Cape et de Crocs there and was immediately sold, ending up learning French to read it and will recommend the same to anyone.

I grew up on Tintin, Asterix and Lucky Luke too. When I got older, I began to be able to appreciate Bilal, Comès and Pratt. Somehow I missed on DC/Marvel almost completely. And now I draw furries... funny how it goes.

Oly-RRR wrote:But back to the theme of the thread, I don't like newer Asterix much... The art is good (I was about to say "got better" but it mostly got more detailed and it's possible to print a wider range of colours these days) but the writing is not the same. Or maybe it's just writing for a different generation, dunno, never met anyone who was significantly younger than me and read Asterix.

The writer dude, Goscinny (a legend) did pass away in 1977, and Uderzo's writing attempts were abysmal, leading to doppelgangers and Arnold Schwarzenegger UFOs... Eventually he gave up too and passed the mantle to Ferri and Conrad, who published an album in 2013. Their work is okay I guess, but not very memorable so far.
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Re: French/Belgian comics discussion!

Postby Oly-RRR » November 23rd, 2014, 8:12 pm

mraab wrote:I like that about it. Sometimes reading an old novel can be difficult, especially if the language and construction are noticeably archaic. But I've found having patience and really immersing myself in it can transport me into the story the way some more recent works can't. Bram Stoker's "Dracula", Shelley's "Frankenstein", the works of Jules Verne, H.G. Wells and H.P. Lovecraft all seemed daunting to me, but rewarded the effort I put into reading them. Old comics are the same, I think. The best classic comix creators reward patience and effort on the part of the reader. I think it might be easier to get into old comix than old books, since we are such a visual species, but I dunno. Anyway, I got that feeling from reading Tintin, Blueberry, Corto Maltese, and Terry and the Pirates, to name a few. Unfortunately, as far as reading novels is concerned, I rarely have the time anymore to devote myself to that kind of active reading.

I'm not an avid reader of old books but I know the feeling you mean, occasionally I like it too! I might be reading books more regularly than comics these days but it's mostly because my greyscale kindle is more portable than anything I can read comics on.

Lassek wrote:Bit of a shame that Gaul stuff doesn't penetrate to the Anglosphere as much as it would deserve. There's a small selection of BD in the largest bookstore here (in French); I spotted De Cape et de Crocs there and was immediately sold, ending up learning French to read it and will recommend the same to anyone.

I keep meaning to learn French just to read comics but enrolling into any serious course is not an option for me right now. But I grew up with Asterix cartoons (and a couple of translated comics)! Never was a fan of live action adaptations but I am kind of looking forward to the new 3D animation, the trailer looked nice, close enough to the original art and not annoying for 3D animation...

Lassek wrote:I grew up on Tintin, Asterix and Lucky Luke too. When I got older, I began to be able to appreciate Bilal, Comès and Pratt. Somehow I missed on DC/Marvel almost completely. And now I draw furries... funny how it goes.

I noticed I learned to appreciate more "realistic" art over the years (I mean compared to Asterix and Tintin hence the quotes, I still enjoy stylisation of all sorts, find photorealism boring and anyway realism is a kind of a moot point) but I still can't get into Bilal for some reason... But I never was big on DC/Marvel either. I like occasional editions (mostly for the art) but can't follow it seriously. Though two friends of mine keep suggesting I give the current runs of Daredevil and Hawkeye a try and I might do it.

Lassek wrote:The writer dude, Goscinny (a legend) did pass away in 1977, and Uderzo's writing attempts were abysmal, leading to doppelgangers and Arnold Schwarzenegger UFOs... Eventually he gave up too and passed the mantle to Ferri and Conrad, who published an album in 2013. Their work is okay I guess, but not very memorable so far.

I was aware of that but didn't know about Ferri and Conrad (I was ignoring the newer books besides the birthday edition I got mostly for the art), I need to look into it.
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