Yesterday it was 60 years since Gaston Lagaffe walked into the door of the offices of the Journal de Spirou (or to put it another way, 60 years since the publication date of issue #985 of the Journal, with the first appearance of the character). As low-profile as the introduction was, Gaston – created by André Franquin and Yvan Delporte – would come to have immense impact on Spirou & Fantasio, pulling Franquin away from the series and redefining the relationship between the characters and the magazine publishing their adventures.
At first, Gaston just appeared in a single silent illustration in each issue (initially in black and white and small format, see below):
After a few weeks, an explanation of sorts led to further questions…
They never managed to get rid of him, and the current issue of the Journal de Spirou is renamed in his honor:
Here’s how the drawings originally appeared in the magazine (from GastonLagaffe.com):