The 44th Angoulême International Comics Festival
will take place from 26 to 29 January. You know, when it comes to French comics
, France, like Belgium, has lots of celebrated writers and many publishing houses, including Dargaud, Glénat and Gallimard. So I thought I’d present a short guide to some famous French titles...
The year is 50 B.C. Gaul is entirely occupied by the Romans. (...) As you’ve no doubt guessed, these are the first lines of Asterix the Gaul
. Asterix is a world-famous series of comics which recount the adventures of two Gaul warriors and their small dog. Asterix, Obelix and Dogmatix (who is known as Idéfix in French) resist the Roman invaders thanks to their courage and the magic potion prepared by the druid Getafix (Panoramix).
You should also read the Iznogoud
(or “Is no good”, if you prefer) series, created by René Goscinny (one of the authors behind Asterix) and Jean Tabary. This series chronicles the life of an ambitious and cruel vizier, whose sole aim is to take power by overthrowing the Caliph of Baghdad by hook or by crook. In other words, he wants to “devenir calife à la place du calife” (“become Caliph instead of the Caliph”), an expression now used in France to refer to someone ambitious and cunning.
Finally, if you want to learn about the lives of “ordinary French people” and find out if the french stereotypes are true
, dive headfirst into Les Bidochon. You will meet the main characters, Robert and Raymonde, whose misadventures while travelling, on the road, in front of the television and in dealing with new technology, will leave you in stitches. They are an irresistible couple! Happy reading!