Norwegian and French collected editions leave something to be desired, while Spain, Finland, Denmark and Germany keep on doing their thing…
Update (27/02): And then there’s Sweden, the Netherlands and Dutch-speaking Belgium… and Poland!
Norway can’t have good things
As reported in September, the Danish publisher Zoom has partnered with the Norwegian bookstore-chain Outland to publish a collected edition of Spirou & Fantasio (Sprint & Co. in Norwegian) in Norway. The first volume, Sprint: Tome & Janry 1981–1984, was released last week. However, the devil is in the details, and this edition disappoints.
Covering the first three Tome & Janry albums, Virus (Spirou & Fantasio #33), Aventure en Australie (#34, “Adventure Down Under”) and Qui arrêtera Cyanure ? (#35, “Who Will Stop Cyanida?”), the book would at first glance seem to match the similarly titled Tome & Janry 1981–1983, volume 13 of the intégrale collected edition, which Zoom has already published in Danish and Swedish. However, that’s not the case. At only 144 pages, this book is 120 pages shorter than the French edition, which is because it omits all the short stories and bonus material, simply collecting the standard album adventures under one cover. (According to Norwegian commenters, there is only three pages of extras in the whole book.) Zoom defends the decision and states that this bare-bones format is one they will continue to use, also for other new series and in Denmark.
A Spirou Reporter reader, Jan Erik Lehn Kaya, also points out that the drawing of Spirou used on the spine of the book is actually by Fournier, from his last album, Des Haricots partout (Spirou & Fantasio #29, “Beans Everywhere”).
The three albums collected in the book are out of print in Norway (though not hard to find second-hand), so for new readers this is a nice opportunity, but for fans and collectors it is a sadly missed chance.
Not the book you are looking for
At around the same time, a French collected edition pulls a similar stunt. Before Dupuis began the chronological collected edition intégrale of Spirou & Fantasio, there was another series of books collecting the series in jumbled order. In 2012 they brought the series up to date by adding an extra-thick volume covering the Morvan & Munuera period, and now they have added another one for Yoann & Vehlmann’s first four albums. However, the book omits their one-shot as well as all their short stories and other material (much of which is available on Spirou Reporter), although there is at least an introduction by Christelle Pissavy-Yvernault.
In this case the omission is perhaps more understandable. The long-established format of the series never stuck to chronology,
and Dupuis has previously announced that there will at some point be an album collecting these shorts (Edit: No they haven’t; I completely misremembered). Also, if the volume is complete with all the extras anyone might want, it could make a future volume of the more high-profile current collected edition redundant.
Perhaps for that same reason, the new volume is not widely available, apparently being sold exclusively through the Collector DB store.
The Spanish Publisher
As a reminder, Dibbuks recently put out the Parme and Trondheim one-shot Pánico en el Atlántico (Panique en Atlantique, or “Panic in the Atlantic”). In addition to a 2016 agenda that already includes Yoann & Vehlmann’s La cara oculta de Z (La face cachée du Z, Spirou & Fantasio #52, “The Dark Side of the Z”) and the next collected edition volume, Tome & Janry 1988–1991 (vol. 15), in October, Dibbuks will also put out Schwartz & Yann’s Gringos Locos in March. And they don’t even have to translate the title!
Alles in Ordnung
Meanwhile, in Germany, Carlsen has released vol. 4 of the collected edition, Franquin 1952–1954 (Spirou & Fantasio Gesamtausgabe 4: Moderne Abenteuer), and vol. 5, Franquin 1956–1958 (Spirou & Fantasio Gesamtausgabe 5: Fabelhafte Wesen) is set to be published on 28. June. They will also get the next album, La Colère du Marsupilami (Spirou & Fantasio #55: “Wrath of the Marsupilami”) on 30. May. This is the 53rd album in the German order, but Carlsen hasn’t provided a German title yet.
As previously reported, the “Wrath of the Marsupilami” album came out in Denmark today as Spirillens Vrede from Cobolt; it will also be published in Finnish by Egmont as Piko ja Fantasio: Marsupilamin raivo on 16. March. And while the Norwegian collected edition may not be the real deal, Zoom continues to publish the full collected edition in Denmark. The next volume, Tome & Janry 1984–1987 (vol. 14), will be released on 12. May, and Zoom expects to continue publishing them at a rate of one every six months.
Update: Just as this rundown was first posted, Mooz Förlag, the Swedish branch of Zoom, announced that the volume will also be published in Sweden at the same time. Not to be outdone, Swedish Egmont will release “Wrath of the Marsupilami” the same month, as Marsupilamis Vrede.
Le Soir intégrale goes Dutch
Stripspeciaalzaak reports that the Le Soir collected edition, an 11-volume collection of Franquin’s Spirou stories in roughly chronological order (the earliest ones and the shorts have been put at the end) published in 2013 as a special offer for subscribers of the French newspaper, will be translated into Dutch and published this year. Each book includes bonus material and articles written by Christelle and Bertrand Pissavy-Yvernault, and the French edition was notably inexpensive, so this could be a good option for the budget-minded collector.
Sprycjan i Fantazjusz
Finally, according to a Spirou Reporter source, Polish comics publisher Taurus Media will publish Spirou and Fantasio (Sprycjan i Fantazjusz in Polish) starting this year. Perhaps taking a page from Cinebook, they will kick it off with the Tome & Janry albums Aventure en Australie (Spirou & Fantasio #34, “Adventure Down Under”), Spirou à New York (#39, “Spirou in New York”), Spirou à Moscou (#42, “Spirou in Moscow”), before jumping ahead to Luna Fatale (#45). This is the first time the series has been published in album form in Poland, although Spirou in New York was serialized over three issues of the magazine Świat Komiksu in 1998, and the cartoon series ran there.
Dates, covers, and Polish titles still to come, but we do know that the albums will be softcover. More to follow!