What a horror! Chief Vitalstatistix has learned that Caesar has called the Belgian tribes, and not the Gauls, the bravest he knows. Along with Asterix and Obelix, the chief goes to confront the Belgians--who, to his surprise, turn out to be very like the people in his own hometown.
Of course there's a cameo!
By Robert P. Beveridge "xterminal" - April 12, 2007
Rene Gosciny, Asterix in Belgium (Dargaud, 1980)
Belgians? Tough? So said Caesar. ("Of all the Gauls, the Belgae are the bravest" can be found in De Bello Gallico.) Vitalstatistix finds out that Romans are actually relived to be being posted to the Roman camp of Aquarium, because the village of indomitable Gauls is nothing compared to the Belgian campaign. Needless to say, Vitalstatistix, along with Asterix and Obelix, has to go to Belgium and challenge the Belgian cheiftain to a Roman-bashing contest...
The most notable thing about Asterix in Belgium is that this is the last of the Asterix books upon which Goscinny worked (he suffered a fatal heart attack whilst working on the text for the book; Uderzo had already completed the drawings, leading to legal action from Dargaud to force Uderzo to complete the text). Uderzo takes over with somewhat surprising competence; readers shouldn't notice the transition. ***
Who Are The Bravest Of The Gauls?
By Gary Selikow - July 19, 2002
The last story written by Goscinny! Fist written in French in 1979 as Astérix chez les Belges, it was first published in English in 1980.Chief Vitalstatistix is outraged upon hearing that Julius Caesar has referred to the Belgians as the bravest of all the Gaullish peoples, and immediately sets out for Belgium to prove him wrong. At the suggestion of Druid Getafix, Asterix and Obelix accompany him, lest the whole venture come to a `sticky end'.What ensues is compensation between the Belgians and the Armoricans (Asterix and Co) to prove who can bash the most Romans, until Julius Caesar comes to Belgium with his army to intervene.Our friends get to meet a robust and fiery people not unlike themselves, with curvaceous blond ladies, good beer and masses of good food.There is a wonderful adaptation of one of those charming paintings by Dutch master, Pieter Breughel The Elder. The English translation uses to very witty effect, quotes by George Gordon, Lord... read more
Fine Asterix Fun
By Elizabeth - August 22, 2000
Look out, reading this book may make you hungry. The Belgians eat and eat, and then eat some more. The traveling gauls are in for a feast.Vitalstatistix gets royally ticked off when he learns that Caesar has named the Belgians to be the bravest of all Gauls. He sets off to prove otherwise with a reluctant Asterix and Obelix in tow. The Belgians and our beloved gauls alternate between trying to best one another in contest and having a riotous good time together.This is not one of my favorite Asterix books because the premise is a little weak; the chief's hot-headed stubbornness is not an interesting enough character trait to carry an entire adventure. It is however chock full of wonderful puns; look for the tribute to Belgium's famous little boy statue. There is also an interesting appearance by Herge's Thompson and Thompson as Asterix pays his respects to Tintin.
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