Tripp’n on Strips

After the train ride home from Ostend, I stop by one of my favorite comic strip stores, Gobelijn in the Mechelse Straat in Leuven (English: Louvain), to marvel at the latest creations in illustrated story telling.  Never understood the ‘comic’ part of “comic strips” as English for Stripverhalen, as most aren’t funny.

While the Smurfs Tintin and ‘Suske & Wiske’ (“Willy and Wanda“/ “Bob & Bobette“, or “Spike and Suzy” depending on which English translation you’re looking at) and perhaps (Franco-Belgian) Lucky Luke are Belgium’s most famous, my childhood preference went to the (old ones, not the newest) Blake and Mortimer,  Yoko Tsuno [-> Click to see which ones have recently been translated to English], and various work by Jacques Martin (French), such as Lefranc and Alex.   In a very different style than those, ‘Roze Bottel’ from 1974, De Lange Reis Naar Het Ongerijmde, stands out in my memory for its superb poking fun of the ridiculous seriousness of modern society.

One of my old-time favorites

I’m out of the loop on the better contemporary offerings, which have skyrocketed in variety. Some friends recommend Thorgal.

See also “Belgium, land of the 9th art“.

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