Jul 072015

When Tome & Janry launched their Petit Spirou (“Little Spirou”) series, it was stated very clearly that this was the same character we already knew, as a child. But many fans, seeing little continuity in the personalities, refused to consider them the same, and as Tome & Janry handed over the main series to other teams, the link became more and more tenuous. Finally, this spring they started a new series of gags featuring the grown-up Little Spirou, which would seem to put the final nail in the coffin of the idea that this is “our” Spirou:

'Le Petit Spirou' gag #612 ("Little Spirou"; ill. Tome & Janry, col. Stuf; (c) Dupuis and the artists; from JdS #4009; SR scanlation)

  23 Responses to “Scanlation Someday: Little, big”


    Good to see Petite Spirou getting some love too! I’ve always been rather fond of the series, but it is pretty clear that its main character is a far cry from the real Spirou. It’s for the better for the two to be unconnected, I think. Seeing those scans does make me appreciate, once again, just how GOOD Janry is at drawing. I don’t think any of the later Spirou artists came close to his style and I actually prefer it over Franquin’s style. In fact, looking at these panels and the ones in your ‘Spirou on vacation’ post makes clear just how ugly or at least crude the latter are (at least in my opinion). What’s your overall opinion on Petite Spirou and Tome & Janry’s run, Spirou Reporter?


      I liked Petit Spirou well enough when I was a kid, but I feel like it ran out of fresh jokes after the first two-three albums, and has basically been running on fumes for the last twenty years. And quite often there are these strange details that take me out of the gag, like in this case: Why is future Little-Spirou 25, when the whole story would make so much more sense if he and his girlfriend were teenagers? (And if it’s a problem of suggesting underage sex, make them 19 or whatever. At 25, these shenanigans just look weird.)

      Janry is definitely a great talent. While I wouldn’t rank him above Franquin, he is safe in second place among Spirou artists. I like some of his stuff better than other, though, and this late-period PS style is not my favorite. I think the character designs in the earlier strips (see bottom) looked a lot better.

      I’m not sure it’s fair to compare the drawing styles in the vacation samples directly against Janry’s, the way it might perhaps be fair to compare him to Tarrin, or Léturgie, or Dany. Séverin’s is a very unique retro pastiche (adapting Jijé) that pushes towards the grotesque of caricature art and is something of a love-it-or-hate-it thing, while Parme is clearly working deliberately with highly simplified, flat, almost UPA-style figures and backgrounds (the art in his latest story is even more “cartoony” and minimalist than his album). They are all going for different looks – and so is, to take another example, Schwartz – and I think the big question is whether they work on their own terms. In my opinion, most of them do, while even after 15 years I still think Janry’s style in MQR just doesn’t.


    Yes… et tant mieux !


    Is this really “canon” adult Little Spirou?? Because going by just this page, it seems more like it’s an imagined future of little Spirou rather than an actual look into his future…


    I feel a little sad because Tome and Janry ‘dumped’ the ‘real spirou’. I really liked their albums. And I just found out that Petit Spirou albuns had 25 years! I thought that it was a really recent thing, and now I feel really stupid. Also, if you notice, they have been adapting a bit the style to fit the 2000, I mean with some of the clothing (exept spirou and his familly, they are still bellhops). And technologies. So If you consider Spirou, himself as a little kid, it looks a bit like he’s aging backwards, comparing the new little Spirou albums with the 1980 Real Spirou albums (Tome and Janry’s). So it woud make a lot more sense that Little Spirou had nothing to do with ‘our Spirou’. What do you think?


    Maybe they should try to make an album of the adult “little” Spirou for the one-shot-series.

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