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Gomer Goof: Gaston Lagaffe coming from Cinébook Ltd.

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george
Member
#1 · Posted: 12 Feb 2017 13:37 · Edited by: Moderator
Spun off from the Spirou & Fantasio thread
I see Cinebook Ltd. are extending their range of Franquin books by scheduling "Gomer Goof Vol. 1: Mind The Goof!" for July. (Amazon UK)

It looks like a translation of "GARE AUX GAFFES DU GARS GONFLÉ" which, in turn, collects the first five mini albums. I think... Good news no matter what.

George
mct16
Member
#2 · Posted: 12 Feb 2017 19:32
"Gomer Goof" always struck me as a rather ridiculous name. "Goof" is too reminiscent of Disney's "Goofy" and there is no particular reason why the English version should share the initials of the original. "Bertie Blunder" would probably have been more appropriate.

A movie based on the character is due out later this year and another of "Spirou et Fantasio" is currently in production. However, I doubt if either of them will be dubbed into English.
george
Member
#3 · Posted: 13 Feb 2017 20:56
mct16:
"Goof" is too reminiscent of Disney's "Goofy"

I've never made that (very obvious!) connection, the name always makes me think of Gomer Pyle in Full Metal Jacket who, after being bullied... Well, it is a family website but suffice it to say the character isn't one you'd normally connect to Franquin!

Funnily enough Gaff would probably work just as well as a surname. Gabriel Gaff - there you go Cinebook, you can have that one for free! Thank me later...!

George
jock123
Moderator
#4 · Posted: 19 Feb 2017 15:23
According to a lengthy thread over on Facebook, they are happy with the change of name, having accepted that it was made not by them, but by Fantagraphics, who first brought a handful of pages to English in the eighties, translated by Kim Thompson.

You've actually been ahead of the game here, george, as the deal was only just struck this week: Amazon jumped the gun by putting up word about it, but Cinébook Ltd. were only able to make the official announcement on signing off on the agreement with the rights-holders.

mct16:
"Goof" is too reminiscent of Disney's "Goofy"

That's a bit of a stretch surely? It's a perfectly useful English word, and describes the character-traits in the original perfectly.

mct16:
"Bertie Blunder" would probably have been more appropriate.

Possibly, but I think that's probably about the same as, rather than "better"; why not leave the intials the same?

george:
the name always makes me think of Gomer Pyle in Full Metal Jacket

"Gomer Pyle" in that instance is a nickname, taken from a character in a military sitcom, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C (although the character originated in another programme, The Andy Griffiths Show).
george
Member
#5 · Posted: 19 Feb 2017 19:58
jock123:
You've actually been ahead of the game here, george, as the deal was only just struck this week: Amazon jumped the gun by putting up word about it, but Cinébook Ltd. were only able to make the official announcement on signing off on the agreement with the rights-holders.

It is almost as if I've nothing to do with my time than check Amazon for the next set of European translations! ('OK, Cinebook next, then Fantagraphics, Selfmadehero, IDW...')


Wow, Facebook, who knew that was still a thing, and so feisty too!

Interesting to see how strong a reaction the choice of name is getting. I also mentioned the Amazon 'fish' over on the Spirou Reporter forum and drew attention to the 80s publications in Fantagraphics' Centrifugal Bumble-Puppy (I think) and the heavy 'localisation', as one post on Facebook describes it, of the content. Gomer Goof worked for 'Funnygraphics' and played football (aka American Football) in the office, rather working at Spirou and playing rugby.

I've never been a huge fan of the approach where you all but disguise the origins of the original work - miles for kilometres, dollars for francs/euros, etc. - and the occasional propensity for Hollywood Americanisms (if I read IDW's Corto Maltese refer to someone as 'two-bit' again..!) as it temporarily pulls me out of the story ('Why is Corto taking like Bogart? Am I missing something?'). I don't mind reading a footnote or being made to work a bit.

Hypocrisy alert - except for Tintin where *of course* he lives London and pals around with British sailors and members of Scotland yard! Don't make me think about Belgium!

jock123:
"Gomer Pyle" in that instance is a nickname, taken from a character in a military sitcom, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C (although the character originated in another programme, The Andy Griffiths Show).

Which is probably why the name was thought to make sense in the context of an 80s anthology aimed at the US market. Odd to think we are now further from that mid-80s publication than it was from the Andy Griffith show.

Ultimately though the publisher is taking the risk, not me, so why wouldn't they try to blunt the edges of consumer resistance? Who am I to complain? My input is limited to £7-99; if the changes they make sell them another 100 copies that may be enough to make the risk a profitable one and have them look deeper into the back catalogue of golden age Franco-Belgian comics. Gil Jordan next please Cinebook!

Coincidentally Fantagraphics, in the shape of The Comic Journal, has just published a loving paean to Andre Franquin and his creation... Gaston La Gaffe! Not a goof in site!

george
mct16
Member
#6 · Posted: 20 Feb 2017 22:18
I just thought that "Bertie Blunder" sounded more appropriate: "Bertie" being reminiscent of another bumbling idiot, Bertie Wooster; and "Blunder" pretty much describes the character. But that's me.
jock123
Moderator
#7 · Posted: 20 Feb 2017 22:37
mct16:
"Bertie" being reminiscent of another bumbling idiot, Bertie Wooster; and "Blunder" pretty much describes the character.

But that's the point - you are just making the same personal connections that Kim Thompson did: name reminiscent of a dim-wit, plus an alliterative surname indicative of carelessness; it's just your frames of reference are different.
That's why I said the names were about the same to me.
george
Member
#8 · Posted: 21 Feb 2017 08:40
george:
"Gomer Goof Vol. 1: Mind The Goof!"

Whatever the relative values of potential alternative names are, and I don't think Gomer Goof is a disaster by any means, it does strike me that "Mind the Gaffe!" makes much more (punning) sense than "Mind the Goof!". Neither are perfect but the former at least is a warning of pending 'disaster', the latter is more a 'watch out for the idiot'. I know the character is disaster prone, but I don't know if he is also a fool.

C'est la vie, as we don't say in the UK.

George
mct16
Member
#9 · Posted: 22 Feb 2017 12:16
I had never even heard of the name "Gomer" before it was associated with this character. I now know that it is a Biblical name and I presume there are some people in this world who have been called "Gomer" but the point is it is so uncommon that it sounds bizarre, and not in the funny sense which is the whole point of this character.

"Goof" itself is unusual - at least for me - and I can't help but associate it with Goofy. It feels like a cash-in when you connect it to another comic character who is not so well-known as Disney's blundering idiot (at least in the English-speaking world at the moment).

While we are on the subject of names, any indication as to how they will name Gaston's boss Prunelle and handle his trademark outburst "Rogntudju!"? (a mangled version of "Nom de Dieu" ("God's Sake") which was then considered unacceptable in children's comics)? They would have to come up with something good to match Haddock's expressions! :)

I hope they don't change the name "De Mesmaeker". It sounds almost like "Mess-maker" and the "de" makes the bearer sound as if he comes from a wealthy background - which he does. Besides, there is something of a charming touch in that the name came from another artist Jean De Mesmaeker (known as Jidéhem).
george
Member
#10 · Posted: 22 Feb 2017 16:50
In semi-related news, Fantagraphics has confirmed in the comments on the thread linked to above that they are 'publishing one Franquin book next year (tentatively titled Franquin's Last Laugh)'. That would be the Idée Noires translation that's been forthcoming for a long long time.

And I'm fine with that as an English title!!

george

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