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“Asterix 35” Announced!: “Astérix chez les Pictes”

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mct16
Member
#11 · Posted: 28 Mar 2013 14:31
rodney:
I have never heard of these artists..
What are their credentials and will the illustrations be up to scratch do you think?

We discuss their merits here. I've just added some more details.
mct16
Member
#12 · Posted: 20 May 2013 12:45
I've been wondering: will we be treated to any scenes of Obelix tapping the side of his head and muttering "These Picts are crazy!" or will that risk the outrage of censor Political Correctnus?
jock123
Moderator
#13 · Posted: 21 May 2013 15:16
mct16:
will that risk the outrage of censor Political Correctnus?

It’s interesting that you are contriving an imaginary scenario, so that you can then scorn the notion, no? To have to create a hypothetical problem so that one can react against it is a tactic which may fill the pages of the tabloids, but doesn’t really make for much of a discussion, does it?

Also, given the number of things which are ultimately questionable in the series (for example, the depiction of the black pirate, both graphically and in his dialogue - especially in the French, and the general use of performance enhancing and other “potions” etc., I’m surprised that you even begin to mention Obelix’s hardly threatening assessment of many people he meets.

Oh, and speaking as a Northern Scot, Obelix can call us crazy if he wants!
mct16
Member
#14 · Posted: 21 May 2013 22:50
I am being quasi-serious: if the series had been created in recent years rather than back in the 1960s, I'm wondering if Obelix's "These [so-and-sos] are crazy!" would have been as tolerated now as it was back then.

Just because you personally would take such a remark with a pinch of salt does not mean that the publishers will. People in authority tend to bar things which they consider offensive even when there have been no actual complains: like when a man was told take he could not wear the Christian cross to work since it could offend non-Christians clients - and yet there had been no actual complaints from any such clients.
jock123
Moderator
#15 · Posted: 22 May 2013 00:09 · Edited by: jock123
mct16:
Just because you personally would take such a remark with a pinch of salt does not mean that the publishers will.

No, but nor do you have any evidence that there will be any reason for the series to change tone, which is, as I said, a very poor way to start a discussion.
You could as easily say, that now the original team are no longer on it, that the series will become an adult-oriented gore fest, or descend into the realms of blue comedy - there’s nothing there to make any assumption on, so any and all are fair game by your lights, but none is worth suggesting just for the sake of it.
mct16:
People in authority tend to bar things which they consider offensive even when there have been no actual complains

That’s back to the tabloid hack approach: let’s think of a worst-case scenario, showing some activity or position in the worst possible light, and then set out to undermine any validity of that position or activity is by saying how bad that scenario is.
There’s no evidence (not a shred as far as I can see) for making any suggestion that any aspect of the series will be changed, and that, in the event that there is change, there’s nothing to say that it won’t be done for valid reasons.
Things don’t “tend” to be banned by “people in authority”, there is absolutely no evidence for that (most things tend to remain, on balance, un-banned - by anyone). How many anythings are “banned” in a year anyway? I’d be interested to know who’s collating the statistics of how many “bans” are in response to a complaint and how many aren’t…
Producing one (undocumented and unsubstantiated - as well as wholly unrelated to the topic of the next Asterix book, I might add) case doesn’t constitute a trend - it doesn’t even indicate that the majority of “bans” are not as a result of complaints.
So I’m afraid I think this is really flying a very flimsy kite of an idea for no other reason than to stir up controversy where none exists…
george
Member
#16 · Posted: 22 May 2013 12:02 · Edited by: george
jock123:
There’s no evidence (not a shred as far as I can see) for making any suggestion that any aspect of the series will be changed, and that, in the event that there is change, there’s nothing to say that it won’t be done for valid reasons.

There's certainly an evolution in terms of what these albums presented as 'fair game' for humour in the 60s and what they'd use now. Your example of the black pirate is a good one: good for a laugh 50 years ago; slightly embarrassing now (CF Tintin and the Congo, although that's a far more extreme and problematical example). At least in the English-language books that character's language has been modified - I don't recall what has been done in Francophone editions.

Now I think of it there was a fair bit of outrage when 'Asterix and'... Was it 'Son' or was it 'Actress'? Anyway, that was seen as being fairly sexist, or patronising at best, and I think the critics had a point. I think 'Political Correctness' is largely a straw man used by (small 'c') conservatives to rail against a changing world; sometimes our favourite artists just get it plain wrong. Of course if someone pulls me up and says it should be 'straw person' then I'd agree that the world has gone mad!(taps side of head...)

As for the book: http://asterix35.com/

George
jock123
Moderator
#17 · Posted: 22 May 2013 15:51
george:
good for a laugh 50 years ago; slightly embarrassing now

I’m sure that there was some move afoot in France to look at the case of “Baba” the pirate lookout (“Flaturtha” in English), and see if anything could be done to improve the situation, but I‘m not certain anything happened.

george:
I think 'Political Correctness' is largely a straw man used by (small 'c') conservatives to rail against a changing world; sometimes our favourite artists just get it plain wrong.

Very well put!

george:
Of course if someone pulls me up and says it should be 'straw person' then I'd agree that the world has gone mad!(taps side of head...)

Don’t worry, the man with the butterfly net will be with you shortly… ;-)
rodney
Member
#18 · Posted: 25 May 2013 17:23
George, as always, I love your input!

I don't know these new collaborators for the Asterix book - do you see it as being a success and more importantly, keeping in line with Rene Goscinny and his comic humour?

He was indeed a special talent... Perhaps in league of his own in this department..
His pacing and story structure was so delightful to read also.. It's a different mould to Tintin, more relaxed and humorous to a degree, his stories are also extremely funny but I guess he has the benefit of having Asterix/Obelix in a past era and not bound by real world constraints and politics.... he had the ability to write with a bit of latitude here...

Of the two however, although both masters, I have to pitch for Herge being the best purely due to his story, structure, pacing and consistency overall, the fact he was both a great writer and artist in addition shows his landmark talents in this genre..
george
Member
#19 · Posted: 31 May 2013 16:17 · Edited by: george
rodney:
do you see it as being a success and more importantly, keeping in line with Rene Goscinny and his comic humour?

It is hard to say because I'm not at all familiar with these new creators. I've checked the artist out and I can see that his style is similarly 'big-foot' without slavishly copying Uderzo's style - albeit in the context of his other works, I've yet to find any previews of the look he's adopting for '...Picts'. [Late edit: With slavishly copying]

We're also so far removed from Goscinny at his peak - incredibly he died 35 years ago - and there's been so much Asterix-coloured water under the bridge since then, not least of which are the eight or so solo Uderzo books, that best I dare hope for is something at least approximating the last books they worked on together. I can't even imagine we'll get anything to match them at their best, but something second best would be fine.

If anything I'm relaxed about the whole thing. Was it Raymond Chandler who said, when told by a guest that Hollywood was ruining his books, took the person in to his library and said: "They’re not ruined. They’re right there on the shelf." No matter how bad the book is (and it'll have to go some to undercut some of the movies) the books are still there on the shelf.

On the other hand I'm totally opposed to continuation of Herge's oeuvre so whaddaIknow?? Inconsistency is usually my middle name...

My main concern is that Anthea Bell gets to work her magic on the book. I'm sure that she will as they are her books (in English) as much as anyone, but I've yet to find any press release acknowledging her role. Orion's press release tell us nothing and just links to that Asterix 35 site and, strangely, the personal twitter account of one of their publicists: "I love a good martini and I tend to shop a lot".

Perhaps this is a confession too far on a site named tintinologist, but my first love as a kid were the Asterix books. I loved the stupid humour and the outlandish violence and I was fortunate to be growing up when the books were being churned out in the UK at a generous rate of knots, both new albums and newly translated ones*. I was such a fan that I've even still got a clipping from the Daily Telegraph (March 7 1981) that ties in with the launch of Asterix and the Great Divide (£2-50). Now I find the books a bit thin - a series of gags without too much depth. Of course looking for depth in knockabout comedy is always going to be a hard task.

That's a long answer to a short question. Summarised: I can see it being a sales success but not a critical success, and expect it to fall short of Goscinny at his best.

George

(*And Cinebook are generously giving me a second childhood in the shape of all those Lucky Luke volumes he had a hand in)
Eivind
Member
#20 · Posted: 11 Jun 2013 10:42
jock123:
The next Asterix is to be a voyage to the land of the Picts, a Celtic people.

Actually, I think there is some disagreement about whether the Picts spoke Celtic or some non-Indoeuropean language.

jock123:
Strictly speaking, the Picts were always independent - the Romans not managing to defeat them, and instead having to stop at the Antonine Wall.

Should it not be the Hadrian wall?

50 Spann:
Asterix without Goscinny or Uderzo? This will be... interesting.

Well, Asterix with only Uderzo was a disaster, apart from the first four albums, which were ok, if not excellent. I hope Uderzo have not had any influence on the new album.

Richard:
cannot possibly be worse than Asterix & the Falling Sky

Yes, Falling Sky was trash, but all the albums from the secret weapon were really bad (apart from album 32 which was a selection of short stories, many of which were with Goscinny as writer). It will be interesting to see if the new couple will be able to come up with something better, but it could hardly be worse than the Falling sky and the Golden book.

mct16:
Well, the writers do not always stick to historical truths even in general terms.

Agree, like the vikings meeting Asterix. The vikings, of course belong to a much later time period.

mct16:
but if they travel by spaceship or flying carpet then I'm making the writers eat every published copy, by Toutatis!

Agree again, mixing up the vikings and Asterix is one thing, but introducing space ships is quite something else. It will be interesting to see how they will treat the Picts. Will they make many references to the later Scots (actually the term Scot was not used for people in this area before much later). Will they for instance use the kilt? Or will they stick more to how Pict culture actually were at that time (to the extent that it is known)?

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