Asterix remains invincible in terms of popularity, which is the equivalent of “truly impossible”.

Asterix remains invincible in terms of popularity, which is the equivalent of "truly impossible".

Noos News

  • Robin for example

    Economics Editor

  • Robin for example

    Economics Editor

62 years old, but not worn out. The 40th album of the comic book hero Asterix is ​​titled White iris. The fact that the series about invincible Greeks hasn’t been created by one of the series’ original creators for years doesn’t seem to bother readers. Five million copies of the new album will be released today. Of these, 185,000 are in Dutch.

It is no longer possible to track exactly how many comics are sold in the Netherlands, according to Tour. Belgium Standard Publisher publishes almost all the major comic series in the Dutch market, from Suske en Wiske, Lucky Luke, Tintin and The Bluecoats, Spiro and Thorgal to The Smurfs.

When asked about the publisher’s top 10 best-selling comic book series, the list included eight series that are more than half a century old. Seven of them were created by new authors.

Golden period

Fabrice Caro, who met White iris He made his debut as a writer on Asterix, and said in a chat with NOS that it was “really impossible” for young authors to create such a successful comic series again. “When Asterix was created, there weren’t a lot of comic book series. So there was more scope for it.”

Asterix and Obelix fans explain why they want the latest album:

“He always makes my husband laugh so much.”

Another factor is that comics are less popular among young people, who play more games or prefer to read Japanese manga comics compared to classic French and Franco-Belgian comics.

Didier Conrad, who has been drawing The Adventures of Asterix since 2012, reacted somewhat indignantly to the comment. He points to its sales figures and dismisses manga as a “massive product” that cannot be compared to series like Asterix. “This is manual labor.”

  • Hachette Livre/Goscinny/Uderzo

  • Hachette Livre/Goscinny/Uderzo

According to him, Asterix is ​​still as popular as ever due to its fame. “Everyone finds something of their own in it. It also stays up to date, with current elements,” he said, referring to the TGV high-speed train in White irisor Obelix trying out a motorcycle in a slapstick manner in Paris.

Conrad, 64, made his debut with the comic in the early 1980s Unnamable. At the time, he could only dream of the sales numbers he now achieves with Asterix. “That’s still true of 85 percent of the series coming out now,” Conrad says of the “huge gap” between classic sitcoms and the rest of the series. “And then nothing comes close to Asterix.”

Conrad also notes that taking over a series like Asterix is ​​never easy, even after six albums. “It’s still a challenge. Each book takes about four pages to get through.”

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