Asterix and the Actress

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Asterix and the Actress
(Astérix et Latraviata)
Asterixcover-31.jpg
Date 2001
Series Asterix
Creative team
Writers Albert Uderzo
Artists Albert Uderzo
Original publication
Date of publication 14 March 2001
Language French
Chronology
Preceded by Asterix and Obelix All at Sea
Followed by Asterix and the Class Act

Asterix and the Actress (French: Astérix et Latraviata, "Asterix and Latraviata") is the 31st volume of the Asterix comic book series, written and illustrated by Albert Uderzo.[1][2]

Plot summary[edit]

For Asterix and Obelix' birthday party, their parents have decided to come from Condatum. Their mothers have already arrived, bringing a fabulous Roman sword and helmet as presents, and they immediately fuss about why their sons are still single; their methods to rectify the situation, however, bring little happiness to their offspring.

Meanwhile, however, Asterix and Obelix' fathers - who run a 'modernities' store in Condatum - have inadvertently got themselves into a tight spot: an alcoholic legionary veteran (Tremensdelirius from Asterix and Caesar's Gift) has pawned a helmet and a sword in their shop - the personal weapons of Pompeius, Caesar's enemy, which are now in Asterix and Obelix's possession. Of course, their rightful possessor wants them back, and to this end he employs one of his agents, Decurion Fastandfurious, and a gifted tragic actress named Latraviata. Disguised as Panacea, Obelix's love interest, who is allegedly suffering from amnesia, Latraviata is to infiltrate the Gaulish village and retrieve Pompeius's weapons.

However, the real Panacea and her husband Tragicomix soon discover that Asterix and Obelix's fathers have been imprisoned by Pompeius, and they immediately travel to their village to warn their friends. On their way they run into Latraviata and Fastandfurious, who have left the village with Asterix and Obelix (who have not yet realized what was going on) in pursuit, and the game is exposed. Fastandfurious is "menhired", Pompeius's weapons are returned to the two friends (with some "slight" damage from menhir pressure), and Asterix and Obelix race to Condatum to free their fathers and to give Pompeius a run for his money. At the end of the story Latraviata is the first actress ever to receive an award for Outstanding Performance, which is believed to be how the César Award was born.

Notes[edit]

  • This is the first appearance of Asterix and Obelix's parents in the mainstream comic line.
  • When Asterix and Obelix's fathers warn Bogus Genius of their sons' retribution, a legionary whispers that this is a "little quirk of theirs ... they're always quoting from that play, Waiting for Godotrix", a reference to Samuel Beckett's tragicomedy, Waiting for Godot. This allusion does not appear in the original French version, which instead uses a biblical allusion, with the legionary saying, "It's an obsession with them, they talk about their sons as if they were waiting for the Messiah."
  • The award Latraviata receives parodies a César Award given by the French Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinema (hence a golden Caesar). The first César Award for Best Actress was given to Romy Schneider in 1976 (who resembles Latraviata unmasked).
  • At one point in the story, an angry Obelix punches Asterix, the first time he has done so (though Asterix later repays the favour while in a hyperactive stupor, having been given some of the magic potion while concussed).
  • During the book, Dogmatix finds a mate and sires puppies, putting him way ahead of Obelix and Asterix in starting a family.
  • In this book, Asterix and Obelix share the same birthday. However, in the book Obelix and Co. and the live-action movie Asterix and Obelix take on Caesar, Obelix does not share a birthday with Asterix. This coincides with the retcon introduced in the short story Birth of Asterix, which was published in 1994, nearly 20 years after Obelix and Co., but seven years prior to Asterix and the Actress.
  • The souvenir store run by Asterix and Obelix's fathers is called 'Modernities & Collectibles' (as opposed to Antiques).
  • On page 33, 'Romans Go Home' is scrawled on a pillar outside the tavern in Condatum, a reference to the same graffiti in Monty Python's Life of Brian.
  • Some fans have suggested the name of the agent Fastandfurius (Pincodus in French) is a reference to the movie series Fast and Furious, although the first film in the series was not released until June 2001, three months after the English release of Asterix and the Actress.
  • Latraviata's name is a reference to the opera La traviata by Giuseppe Verdi.
  • Asterix and the Actress was France's best-selling comic book of 2001, selling 2,288,065 copies.[3]
  • Uderzo released a special edition of the album called Astérix et Latraviata - L'album des crayonnés (Asterix and the Actress - The Album of Preparatory Work) (2001) to show the production stages from sketching to scanning, printing, inking and coloring.[3]

In other languages[edit]

  • Catalan: Astèrix i Latraviata
  • Croatian: Asterix i Latravijata
  • Czech: Asterix a Latraviata
  • Dutch: Asterix en Latraviata
  • Finnish: Asterix ja Latraviata
  • Galician: Astérix e Latraviata
  • German: Asterix und Latraviata
  • Greek: Ο Αστερίξ και η Λατραβιάτα
  • Italian: Asterix e Latraviata
  • Norwegian: Asterix og Latraviata
  • Polish: Asteriks i Latraviata
  • Portuguese: Astérix e Latraviata
  • Serbian: Астерикс и Латравијата
  • Spanish: Astérix y Latraviata
  • Swedish: Asterix och Latraviata


Reception[edit]

On Goodreads, it has a score of 3.69 out of 5.[4]

External Links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Albert Uderzo - Asterix And The Actress - Hachette Children's Group.
  2. ^ "Asterix and the Actress - Asterix - The official website". www.asterix.com. Retrieved 2018-10-04.
  3. ^ a b Laurence Grove (30 July 2010). Comics in French: The European Bande Dessinée in Context. Berghahn Books. pp. 165–. ISBN 978-1-84545-810-2.
  4. ^ "Asterix and the Actress (Astérix, #31)". www.goodreads.com. Retrieved 2018-10-04.