#40. Asterix Versus Caesar
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Asterix and Obelix join the Roman Legion (in a parody of the French Foreign Legion) in an attempt to find the conscripted fiancé of Panacea, a villager on whom Obelix has a big crush. With an eclectic group of foreigners, they are sent to North Africa to fight the traitor Scipio.
Asterix the Gladiator is the fourth volume of the Asterix comic book series, by René Goscinny (stories) and Albert Uderzo (illustrations). It was first serialized in the magazine Pilote, issues 126–168, in 1962. Synopsis: Odius Asparagus, the prefect of Gaul, captures Cacofonix and sends him as a present to Caesar. Unimpressed by Cacofonix, Caesar orders him to be thrown to the Lions at the Circus Maximus. Asterix and Obelix hitchhike all the way to Rome where they must become gladiators to rescue him.
A troublemaker is brought to Caesar in Rome; he was to be executed in the Colosseum, but is so conniving that he got the lions to eat each other instead. Caesar sends him to the Gaulish village in an attempt to destroy unity.
In the absence of Getafix, a fraudulent seer seeks shelter against rain in the Village, then ingratiates himself to everyone by predicting the futures they want to hear, asking no food or money, merely items to "read" the future in (mainly as food and money). Unbeknown to the Gauls, he is hired by the Romans to convince the Gauls to abandon the village by that disaster would befall the village were he to be chased off.
The Romans conspire with a Roman-friendly Gaulish village to declare a ritual winner-takes-all fight between the village chiefs. One of Obelix's menhirs causes Getafix to lose his memory, leaving the Gauls without magic potion. The fight parodies professional boxing.
Caesar sends one of his advisors to the Gaulish village, in an effort to make them rich, decadent and utterly dependent on Rome. He starts by buying menhirs at ever-increasing prices, thus persuading most of the village to make useless menhirs, and in turn employing other villagers to hunt for their food. The plan goes awry when Caesar's treasury turns out insufficient to fund the menhirs, and a commercial campaign to sell them in Rome fails because of competition from Egyptian menhirs and slave-made Roman menhirs.
Caesar calls the Egyptians inferior to the Romans. Outraged, Cleopatra wagers with him that her people can build a grand monument in record time. Edifis, a bumbling, timid architect is asked to perform the miracle, and asks his old friend Getafix for help. Meanwhile, his rival and Caesar's agents attempt to sabotage the effort.
One small village in Britain still holds out against the Roman invaders. But with no Magic Potion, they need help, so Asterix's cousin Anticlimax comes to Gaul seeking aid.
Asterix and the Golden Sickle (French: La serpe d'or, "The Golden Sickle") is the second volume of the Asterix comic book series, by René Goscinny (stories) and Albert Uderzo (illustrations). It was first serialized in Pilote magazine issues 42–74 in 1960. Synopsis: Getafix's sickle breaks, so Asterix and Obelix volunteer to go to Lutetia to buy a new one. But there is a mysterious sickle shortage our heroes must get to the bottom of.
Asterix the Gaul is the first volume of the Asterix comic strip series, by René Goscinny (stories) and Albert Uderzo (illustrations). In Le Monde's 100 Books of the Century, a 1999 poll conducted by the French retailer Fnac and the Paris newspaper Le Monde, Asterix the Gaul was listed as the 23rd greatest book of the 20th century. Synopsis: The Romans discover that the secret of the Gauls' strength is the magic potion brewed by the druid Getafix, so they decide to capture the druid and get the recipe out of him. It is up to Asterix and his wits to save Getafix.
Asterix and the Goths is the third volume of the Asterix comic book series, by René Goscinny (stories) and Albert Uderzo (illustrations). It was first published in 1963 in French and translated into English in 1974. Synopsis: Asterix and Obelix, nervous about Getafix traveling alone to the annual druids' conference in the Forest of the Carnutes, accompany him on his journey and remain outside the forest during the conference. Soon after, Getafix is captured by a tribe of Goths intending to kidnap the Druid of the Year and use his skills to conquer Gaul and Rome. It is up to Asterix and Obelix to rescue him.
Unsuccessful at conquering the village, the Romans decide to isolate it by building a stockade. To remove it, Asterix strikes a bet with the Romans that he and Obelix can travel throughout Gaul and back to the village with various Gaulish delicacies without the Romans being able to stop them. The route is a parallel to the modern Tour de France cycling event. It's in this adventure that Obelix gets his dog, Dogmatix.
The Normans are fearless to the point of not even understanding the concept, so they travel to Gaul where they kidnap chief Vitalstatistix's cowardly visiting nephew Justforkix to teach them fear.
After too many banquets, chief Vitalstatistix is forced to visit a spa in the Arvernian countryside to nurse his sore liver. Meanwhile, Caesar orders his men to search the area for the shield of Vercingetorix, regarded as a patriotic symbol by the Gauls.
A poisoned Roman tax inspector seeks sanctuary in the village. Asterix and Obelix are sent to Switzerland to recover a Silver Star, or Edelweiss, which is needed to cure him.
Responding to criticism of the “deplorable” condition of Roman roads in the regions, Senator Lactus Bifidus proposes a chariot race across the Italic Peninsula to showcase the “excellent” roads. The race is open to all people of the known world. Julius Caesar endorses the race but states that a Roman must win for the sake of unity across the Italic Peninsula. In Gaul, Asterix and Obelix are taking Geriatrix to a dentist at a market in Darioritum, when a sibyl tells Obelix he will become a champion charioteer. Obelix then buys a sports chariot on credit, gives up making menhirs and joins the trans-Italic race, accompanied by Asterix and Dogmatix. Over the course of the race, they encounter a range of competitors from other lands, as well as the people and cuisines of Ancient Italy. The two Gauls narrowly win the race and share the trophy with all of the competitors.
Asterix and Obelix visit a village divided in half by its rival chiefs. However, one chief's son and the other's daughter are in love, and together with Asterix and Obelix, they reunite the village. The dividing chasm itself resembles the Berlin Wall. There is also a reference here to Romeo and Juliet.
Caesar tries to dilute solidarity and weaken local customs in Gaul by creating a vacation resort near the Village. The villagers sabotage the efforts, first by magically replanting the forest as soon as it's cut, and by creating a slaves' union; later by being obnoxious neighbors to the resident Romans.
Whosemoralsarelastix, chief of a nearby village, asks Vitalstatistix to hide his village's money to prevent the Romans from taking it. When the money is stolen under his watch, Asterix is banished until he can repay the money and recover his honour.
As part of the celebrations of the anniversary of Vercingetorix's victory at the Battle of Gergovia, the Gauls and their friends raid one of the nearby Roman camps. A very stoic and composed prisoner is discovered, who reveals himself as Boneywasawarriorwayayix, a tribal leader from Corsica. Asterix and Obelix accompany him back to Corsica, to unite the quarrelling tribes against the Romans.
A fakir from far-away India travels to Asterix's village and asks Cacofonix to save his land from drought since his horrible voice can make it rain. Cacofonix, accompanied by Asterix and Obelix, must travel to India aboard a magic carpet to save the life of the princess Orinjade, who is to be sacrificed to stop the drought.
To participate in the Olympic Games in Greece, the Gauls register themselves as Romans. When the officials declare the magic potion to be a form of illegal doping, Asterix turns to his native abilities to compete.
Getafix has run out of rock oil and sends Asterix and Obelix to Mesopotamia in search of it. They are accompanied by a Gaulish-Roman druid called Dubbelosix, who is really a double agent seeking to foul their mission. Includes a tribute to Goscinny, who was Jewish.
Thoroughly chagrined by his obnoxious brother-in-law, Vitalstatistix gets drunk and boasts that he will create a dish seasoned with Caesar's laurel wreath. He orders Asterix and Obelix travel to Rome to retrieve it.
Brewing the magical potion requires fresh fish, and Unhygienix has none since he imports it from Lutetia (Paris) (in spite of living near the sea). Asterix and Obelix sail out to catch fish, but become lost and end up on the other side of the ocean, discovering a New World, where they eventually become a legend to the Native American populace. Soon afterwards, a Viking explorer discovers America, and captures the first natives he finds (i.e. them) and brings them home. A running joke in this comic is that none of the races are able to understand one another, the Vikings speaking with Scandinavian vowels that the Gauls are unable to duplicate, but that their dogs are able to communicate perfectly.
Pepe, a young and spoiled child, is taken from the Romans. He turns out to be Spanish, and held hostage in an attempt to get them to surrender. Asterix and Obelix escort the child back to Spain.
At the end of their career, legionaries are granted estate in the Empire to settle down. A perpetually inebriated soldier is given the Village, by Caesar's hand, which he promptly sells to an innkeeper for wine. Pushed by his dominant wife, the innkeeper sells his property and attempts to claim the village as his own. Upon discovering that his ownership is void, he campaigns to be elected chief, causing rivalries to ensue throughout the village. To complicate matter, the soldier returns and asks the local legions' aid in reclaiming his village, since he didn't get enough wine for it.
A baby boy mysteriously turns up at Asterix's doorstep. No one in the village knows who he is, so Asterix is forced to be his adoptive father. Meanwhile, the Roman legions led by Brutus are after the baby, because in reality, he is Caesar's full-blooded son, Caesarion.
When Vitalstatistix hears that Caesar has said that the Belgians are the bravest of all the Gaulish peoples he heads to Belgium in a huff to show the world that his Armoricans are really the best.
A feminist satire in which a female bard called Bravura replaces Cacofonix as school teacher and "liberates" the village women, causing the men to leave and live in the forest. Caesar secretly sends a battalion of female legionaries to conquer the village, having heard that the Gauls will not strike a woman. The men and woman have to settle their differences to overcome this threat.
Left alone in Getafix's hut, Obelix drinks a whole cauldron of magic potion. He first turns to stone, then into a small boy. Meanwhile, a group of men have escaped from Roman slavery on board a ship. Together, they travel to Atlantis to make Obelix a grown man again.
A Roman actress pretends to be Panacea in order to steal back a fancy sword/scabbard and helmet belonging to Pompey, which Asterix and Obelix got for their birthday before Caesar learns Pompey is in Armorica.
A collection of several short stories, including an experiment at different drawing and storytelling styles. Most stories are written by Goscinny.
Two rival outer space alien ships appear above the Gaulish village. The aliens want to know the secret of the great weapon the Gauls have, which is "known throughout the universe". The aliens are styled on the happy-faced Walt Disney and Marvel Comics superheroes of the American comic book style on one side, and futuristic robot and insect-like Japanese manga style on the other. The album is explained by Uderzo as a tribute to Walt Disney, who inspired him to be an artist. Reception of the album was mixed, with many fans criticizing the sci-fi setting, and thinly veiled references to the Bush administration. Despite this criticism, the album was not disliked by everyone, and reportedly sold well. The album is explained by Uderzo as a tribute to Walt Disney, who inspired him to become an artist. It is generally disliked by fans, mostly because Asterix albums tend to be classical, and this album has aliens from outer space and a different, far less detailed drawing style.
Asterix and Obelix’s Birthday: The Golden Book is the thirty-fourth episode of the Asterix comic book series, designed and written by Albert Uderzo. The usage of previous Asterix stories led to co-creator Late René Goscinny also being credited. The album, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of the creation of the series, was released on 22 October 2009. The album begins with a preface where Uderzo replies to the critics of his solo work, specially for the previous album, Asterix and the Falling Sky. He also says The Golden Book is not a whole story, but a succession of short stories, including some written by Goscinny, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the hero.
When Asterix and Obelix rescue a mysterious Pict named MacAroon, they must journey to Caledonia, now Scotland, to return him to his lady love, Camomilla, the adopted daughter of the old king. However, the treacherous chieftain MacCabeus - with the help of the Romans - plans to marry her and claim the throne.
Julius Caesar has written a history of his campaigns in Gaul. His publisher, Libellus Blockbustus, advises him to cut a chapter detailing his defeats by the indomitable Gauls. A stolen copy of the censored chapter ends up with the Gauls, who take measures to ensure it will be remembered for future generations.
"How Obelix Fell into the Magic Potion When he was a Little Boy" is an Asterix story written by René Goscinny and originally published in the French magazine Pilote issue 291 (1965), with only a few drawings. In 1989 it was fully illustrated by Albert Uderzo and published in an album as a text story with illustrations. The story is narrated by Asterix, apparently to the conventional readership, and tells that in childhood, Obelix was often bullied by other boys, until Asterix, to assist his courage, induced him to drink some of the magic potion that made the villagers invincible. When they are interrupted in the act, Obelix falls into the cauldron containing the potion, and drinks it all, and is thereafter permanently under its influence.
To prove to his critics that the Gauls are mere mortals, Julius Caesar challenges the village to perform twelve tasks that only gods could perform, similar to the twelve tasks of Hercules. If they succeed, he will admit defeat and let them become the rulers of Rome, but if they fail, they will become his slaves. The challenge is accepted and Asterix and Obelix are chosen to represent the village, eventually succeeding in all tasks. (This comic book, published in 1976, is an adaptation of the original story animated film The Twelve Tasks of Asterix. The artwork is thought to be the work of Uderzo's brother Marcel. It has very rarely been printed and usually excluded from the canonical list of Asterix volumes.)
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