All right! Since the last one of these, quite a few things have happened, so let’s just run through them quickly…
Leopard Woman it is!
There’s been some confusion around the title of Schwartz & Yann’s one-shot (currently up to its seventh installment in the Journal de Spirou), but after some back and forth, where it was first announced as La femme léopard (“The Leopard Woman”), then changed to Le fétiche des Marolles (“The Marolles Fetish”) for the first few magazine installments, and then appearing on Amazon under the name Le fétiche du Kongo (“The Fetish from Kongo”) , it has now officially gone back to the original name, La femme léopard (or Spirou et la femme léopard in longform), both in the more recent magazine installments and for the album itself. Le fétiche du Kongo will be the title of the edition in Brussels dialect.
Cinebook has announced their publication schedule for the second quarter, which includes Spirou & Fantasio in Moscow (Spirou #42) in April. (That is the UK date. The US release is usually a bit later; Amazon currently has it down for July.) No word on The Rhinoceros’ Horn, but maybe we can expect it later in the year?
Four in one from Tome & Janry
Amazon also has some details on the next volume of the intégrale series, vol. 15. Well, mainly that it is expected for the start of May, slightly earlier than previously announced. If the 1988–1991 dates on the temporary cover are correct, it should include the next four Tome & Janry albums: La frousse aux trousses (Spirou #40, “Running Scared”), La vallée des bannis (Spirou #41, “Valley of the Exiles”), Spirou à Moscou (Spirou #42, “Spirou & Fantasio in Moscow”) and Vito la déveine (Spirou #43, “Vito the Unlucky”).
Another fine mess, sorted… sort of
Dupuis has sent out the Gaston box set supplement, which includes the pages accidentally left out of that collection, to buyers and comic book stores. In addition to the missing gags, it also includes some four pages of extras, mostly facsimiles of Franquin’s originals. Reportedly only 500 supplements were initially printed, even though the box set had a printing of 3000; presumably the publisher assumed most buyers wouldn’t go through the hoops necessary to get hold of it. But after some stores were unable to provide supplements to all their customers, Dupuis printed another 2000. And with that, this whole sorry affair is hopefully over.
A short drive off a shorter road, in style
The next of Franquin’s short Spirou stories to get a special annotated edition is Vacances sans histoires (“An Uneventful Holiday”) from 1958–59, usually included in the album Le gorille a bonne mine (Spirou #11, something like “Gorilla’s Looking Good” or from Euro Book as “The Gorilla Gold Adventure”). This is the story that introduces the Turbotraction II. It should be out in early April. The next in the series is reportedly Panade à Champignac (“Trouble in Champignac”) in October. Although also the title of an album, which combines this story with Bravo les Brothers, this edition will just consist of the story by itself, since the other half has already been released. (via Spirou, ami, partout, toujours)
Recreating the blunder
There is talk of a new edition of Numa Sadoul’s classic Et Franquin créa la gaffe (“And Franquin Created the Blunder”) from 1986, an in-depth series of interviews with Franquin about his work. (I seem to remember reading that Sadoul has a lot of additional interview material he wants to incorporate, but can’t find a source for that right now.) This is a standard reference work that has been out of print and hard to get hold of for a long time, so a new (and improved?) edition is excellent news.
Curse of the S
Philippe Tomblaine, author of the long-troubled book on Spirou, Aux sources du S… (“Origins of the S”), posted a couple of messages on BD Gest seeking to raise an additional 2000 EUR in order to license the necessary visual material. Buyers who pledge now will get a specially signed and personalized copy. If the money can not be found, he will be forced to cut half the illustrations in order to reduce the cost. In any case, the previously announced February release date is looking extremely dubious.