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Franco-Belgian comics in English

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mct16
Member
#81 · Posted: 24 Mar 2010 20:02
jock123
Failure to maintain the proper chronology may work in some cases but not always. I was actually using the case of "Cigars" as an example, but on the other hand I think that the translators could have respected the original text. Marlinspike is not mentioned in any of the original French editions of "Cigars" so why is it in the English ones?

You're the one who is looking forward to the Adele Blanc-Sec movie. If you picked up just any one of her books, without bothering to read the previous ones I think you'll be rather at a loss as to what it's all about, especially with the mish-mash of characters and events that Tardi tends to come up with.
george
Member
#82 · Posted: 24 Mar 2010 21:09
mct16:
it is sometimes necessary to read the previous books in order to really appreciate the characters, their relationships and some elements of the plot.

I suppose it all depends on how close a reading one gives to the volumes and to what extent, if any, minor changes to the text (presumably designed to smooth over the effect of out-of-order translations) affects the enjoyment.

I'd agree that there'd be a big problem if, for example, Methuen had published Destination Moon after Explorers on the Moon, as the first book is essential to proper understanding of the second. But references to Rastapopoulos (or whoever) when one wasn't originally there I can't get too worked up about as I don't see it as in any way damaging the story line.

I'm more likely to argue that it shouldn't be done because Herge didn't do it (although, as pointed out elsewhere in this thread, he wasn't adverse to playing with the text either) rather than get overly concerned with what is, at worst, a point of minor continuity. Frankly there's more than enough worrying about time-lines et al in super hero books; the last thing I'd want to see is that approach infect Tintin!

I quite like Cinebook's approach of bringing the strongest volumes of Blake & Mortimer to use first, and not worrying that we don't know how the leads met, or when Olrik first started his villainy.

Getting back to Tintin, I'd be surprised if there's any more than a small minority of readers who've come to the books in the precise order of publication, which means we've all had to do a bit of mental adjustment at some time to allow for the fact Tintin seems to be matey with someone we've never met before, or seems not to know who a character is despite sharing many adventures with him.

George
mct16
Member
#83 · Posted: 25 Mar 2010 02:21
george:
I quite like Cinebook's approach of bringing the strongest volumes of Blake & Mortimer to use first, and not worrying that we don't know how the leads met, or when Olrik first started his villainy.

A friend pushed me into reading "The Yellow Mark" before I'd even thought of trying the others because he said it was the best of the bunch. The fact that in this story Olrik is nothing more than a manipulated puppet has somewhat dented my reading of the other books in which he is a master criminal and leading spy.

Alright, I get the message. I'll book a meeting with my shrink tomorrow.
jock123
Moderator
#84 · Posted: 25 Mar 2010 09:48
mct16:
A friend pushed me into reading "The Yellow Mark" before I'd even thought of trying the others because he said it was the best of the bunch.

I think that’s a very good example of the benefits/ problems of the whole thing, really. I think your friend may be right, as far as the Jacob’s B&M books are concerned, but as you rightly say, it makes Olrik a less-than-convincing adversary for our heroes.
I read The Yellow M first as well, and while the art might be first rate, I found the story to be a bit of a plodder; I then read the first two Comcat books - Time Trap and Atlantis Mystery, and again I could admire the art, but wasn’t that taken with the stories.
Next I read Secret of the Swordfish and that was amazingly dull (even allowing for the fact that I was reading it in French, and therefore some of the problems might have come from my lack of ability).
I’d probably not have bothered with The Yellow M if I’d read the three volumes of Swordfish first, and I only read all three of those because I bought an omnibus edition…
So were the books to have been published in order, in single editions, I’d have stopped at volume one of Swordfish, and gone no farther. I’m not certain that the two books which Comcat chose would have inspired me, but they weren’t an immediate turn off.
The Yellow M, however, at least got me to try others in the series, albeit with a confused idea of why their main villain wasn’t actually much cop.

mct16:
Alright, I get the message. I'll book a meeting with my shrink tomorrow.

Nah, no need for that: we’ll just get Septimus to apply a little Yellow M-style Mega Wave mind-control to you with his telecephaloscope…
rodney
Member
#85 · Posted: 25 Mar 2010 15:03
jock123:
To be honest, if the first two books published by Methuen had been Soviets and Congo, I doubt that we'd be having this conversation today, because there is little chance that the books would have survived, and there wouldn't be a Tintinologist.org.

Jock you are spot on (as most times!), Michael Farr had this same view in the English version of 'Tintin The Complete Companion' on page 22 during his analysis of Congo he states:Had this been the only or last Tintin adventure, he would be forgotten today

This are very significant words.
It would be a hard argument indeed to justify 'Soviets' and especially 'Congo' as great works of Tintin.
These are very poor works when compared to the other adventures.

In order to introduce a concept to foreign audience you need to show your best works on hand, if it is a hit then gradually showcast the rest of the portfolio.
The first couple of tales must 'WOW' the audience... Therefore it has to be the best on show in order for the adventures to continue....
Without that the whole concept falls away due to a luck of audience....

There is no doubt that to intro Tintin to English readers, the translators needed to showcast the best Tintin adventures at that point in time being 'Unicorn' 'Rackham' (both in 1952) et al stories.... it makes perfect sense that the stories started there for the English audience.. those great adventures captivated us, and kept us in for the long haul!!
I could not say the same had the original story order been kept to..

Does this sound reasonable??
george
Member
#86 · Posted: 25 Mar 2010 16:25 · Edited by: george
2Orangy4Crows:
The Cinebook website says 5 new series for 2010. We already know about XIII and Valérian and now Crusade and Long John Silver. Still one left...

I think they might be counting the relaunch of the Cinebook Recounts series as one of the new lines for 2010. I was in Foyles today and on flicking through it I noticed that the copyright date for The Battle of Britain is now this year (with an acknowledgement that it was originally printed in 2007[?]).

Amazon shows both this and the Falklands one as having 2010 versions. Interestingly the back of the book includes the cover of the never released Wright Brothers album.

George
george
Member
#87 · Posted: 12 May 2010 12:17 · Edited by: george
And here's the catalogue for all of 2010.

The interesting news is that the Valerian books will be the traditional Bd/Tintin size rather than the reduced size versions. I suppose this indicates that the series is considered a Children's book.

George
http://www.cinebook.co.uk/cinebook_catalogue_9.pdf

Catalogue
mct16
Member
#88 · Posted: 20 Mar 2011 16:08
There is a website called Euro-Comics which appears to be a good way of finding out which European comics have been translated into English.
george
Member
#89 · Posted: 8 Jun 2011 12:48 · Edited by: george
mct16:
There is a website called Euro-Comics which appears to be a good way of finding out which European comics have been translated into English.

That's always been a handy site - largely for reminding me that I'm way short in my collecting!

Talking of translated Euro-Comics (such a smooth segue...) Fantagraphics have put up a 8-page preview of their newest classic Franco-Belgian translation "Murder by High Tide" by Maurice Tillieux (a Gil Jourdan album from 1958) which looks pretty good to me. As an aside I wish more publishers would go down this preview route as it is sometimes hard to know what you are buying if you order sight-unseen.

Oh, that car in the first few pages of the preview? A Facel Vega - lovely!

George
mct16
Member
#90 · Posted: 9 Jun 2011 15:30 · Edited by: mct16
george:
Fantagraphics have put up a 8-page preview of their newest classic Franco-Belgian translation "Murder by High Tide" by Maurice Tillieux (a Gil Jourdan album from 1958) which looks pretty good to me.

Comparing this preview to the original French, I can say that it is an excellent example of a point I've made before about the translators keeping to the spirit of the original French text rather than their own words or a word-by-word translation as seems to be the case with others such as Cinebooks.

george:
I wish more publishers would go down this preview route as it is sometimes hard to know what you are buying if you order sight-unseen.

There's this site Izneo.com which includes previews of many French-language comics which have been translated into English. Just click on the Union Jack on the top left-hand side and this will give you access to the English-translated previews.

You can then buy access to the whole story for a few Euros or go to actually buy them at the shops or online.

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