After completing basic training and repeatedly and comically driving their instructors to the verge of tears , the newly formed unit sets off as reinforcements to Caesar against Scipio , Afranius , and King Juba I of Numidia. Asterix and Obelix soon find out that Tragicomix has gone missing in action after a skirmish, and raid Scipio's camp to recover him. This provokes the Battle of Thapsus , in which the confusion over the Gauls' unorthodox assault and the similarity of both armies' uniforms cause a default victory for Caesar after the frustrated Scipio sounds the retreat.
The Gauls are cornered by Caesar after the battle is over; but released and sent home for their assistance in his victory. Asterix and Obelix thereafter celebrate at home, while Panacea and Tragicomix return to Condatum to marry.
Film adaptation[ edit ] Elements of the plot of this story were blended with Asterix the Gladiator for the animated movie Asterix Versus Caesar. The little Armorican village, however, has held out because the villagers can gain temporary superhuman strength by drinking a magic potion brewed by the local village druid, Getafix. His chief is Vitalstatistix. The main protagonist and hero of the village is Asterix , who, because of his shrewdness, is usually entrusted with the most important affairs of the village.
He is aided in his adventures by his rather corpulent and slower thinking friend, Obelix, who, because he fell into the druid's cauldron of the potion as a baby, has permanent superhuman strength because of this, Getafix steadily refuses to allow Obelix to drink the potion, as doing so would have a dangerous and unpredictable result. Obelix is usually accompanied by Dogmatix , his little dog.
Except for Asterix and Obelix, the names of the characters change with the language. Asterix and Obelix and sometimes other members of the village go on various adventures both within the village and in far away lands.
Places visited in the series include parts of Gaul Lutetia , Corsica etc. Humour[ edit ] The humour encountered in the Asterix comics often centers around puns , caricatures , and tongue-in-cheek stereotypes of contemporary European nations and French regions.
Much of the humour in the initial Asterix books was French-specific, which delayed the translation of the books into other languages for fear of losing the jokes and the spirit of the story. Some translations have actually added local humour: In the Italian translation, the Roman legionaries are made to speak in 20th-century Roman dialect, and Obelix's famous Ils sont fous ces romains "These Romans are crazy" is translated as Sono pazzi questi romani, humorously alluding to the Roman abbreviation SPQR.
In another example: Hiccups are written onomatopoeically in French as hips, but in English as "hic", allowing Roman legionaries in more than one of the English translations to decline their hiccups absurdly in Latin hic, haec, hoc. The newer albums share a more universal humour, both written and visual. Certain rules are followed most of the time such as Gauls and their neighbours having an "-ix" suffix for the men and ending in "-a" for the women; for example, Chief Vitalstatistix so called due to his portly stature and his wife Impedimenta often at odds with the chief.
The male Roman names end in "-us", echoing Latin nominitive male singular form, as in Gluteus Maximus , a muscle-bound athlete whose name is literally the butt of the joke. Gothic names present-day Germany end in "-ic", after Gothic chiefs such as Alaric and Theoderic ; for example Rhetoric the interpreter. Greek names end in "-os" or "-es"; for example, Thermos the restaurateur.
British names end in "-ax" and are often puns on the taxation associated with the later United Kingdom ; examples include Valuaddedtax the druid, and Selectivemploymentax the mercenary.
Other nationalities are treated to Pidgin translations from their language, like Huevos y Bacon, a Spanish chieftain whose name, meaning eggs and bacon , is often guidebook Spanish for tourists , or literary and other popular media references, like Dubbelosix a sly reference to James Bond 's codename "".
Most of these jokes, and hence the names of the characters, are specific to the translation; for example, the druid named Getafix in English translation is Panoramix in the original French and Miraculix in German.
His name is usually left unchanged in translations, aside from accents and the use of local alphabets. For explanations of some of the other names, see List of Asterix characters. Ethnic stereotypes[ edit ] Many of the Asterix adventures take place in other countries away from their homeland in Gaul.
In every album that takes place abroad, the characters meet usually modern-day stereotypes for each country, as seen by the French. Italics Italians are the inhabitants of Italy. In the adventures of Asterix, the term "Romans" is used by non-Italics to refer to all inhabitants of Italy, who at that time had extended their dominion over a large part of the Mediterranean basin.
But as can be seen in Asterix and the Chariot Race , in the Italic peninsula this term is used only to the people from the capital, with many Italics preferring to identify themselves as Umbrians, Etruscans, Venetians, etc. Various topics from this country are explored, as in this example, Italian gastronomy pasta, pizza, wine , art, famous people Pavarotti, Berlusconi, Mona Lisa , and even the controversial issue of political corruption. Goths Germans are disciplined and militaristic, they are composed of many factions that fight amongst each other which is a reference to Germany before Otto von Bismarck , and to East and West Germany after the Second World War , and they wear the Pickelhaube helmet common during the German Empire.
Helvetians Swiss are neutral, eat fondue , and are obsessed with cleaning, accurate time-keeping, and banks. The Britons English are phlegmatic , and speak with early 20th-century aristocratic slang similar to Bertie Wooster.
They stop for Tea every day making it with hot water and a drop of milk until Asterix brings them actual tea leaves , drink lukewarm beer Bitter , eat tasteless foods with mint sauce Rosbif , and live in streets containing rows of identical houses.
Hibernians Irish are the inhabitants of Hibernia, the Latin name of Ireland. They fight against the Romans alongside the Britons to defend the British Isles. Hispania Spain is overrun with tourists , the country where people of northern Europe go on vacation, ask to eat the same food they eat at their homelands, and cause tremendous traffic jams on the Roman roads.
Other recurring topics are flamenco , bullfighting , and olive oil. Reference is also made to the famous literary character Don Quixote.
The warrior first hallucinates American-style emblematic eagles ; the second time, he sees stars in the formation of the Stars and Stripes ; the third time, he sees stars shaped like the United States Air Force roundel.
Asterix's inspired idea for getting the attention of a nearby Viking ship which could take them back to Gaul is to hold up a torch; this refers to the Statue of Liberty which was a gift from France.In the former Yugoslavia, the "Truth" publishing house translated Corsican text in Asterix in Germany into the Montenegrin dialect of Serbo-Croatian today satisfied Montenegrin. An unscrupulous innkeeper, Us news and world report immigration, resumes the two Gauls to his inn, where he thinks them a bag of writings and many them drugged boar. May I fall out now. The huts then ate each other. They stop for Tea every day making it with hot noisy and a drop of gender until Asterix brings them born tea leavesdrink lukewarm lava Bittereat tasteless foods writing success sauce Rosbifand more in streets containing rows of identical resumes.
In the Tower of Londinium , Obelix wakes up and frees himself and Dipsomaniax out of the jail, and the three heroes, after a search, find the potion in use as a pick-me-up for a rugby team. Asterix in Britain The "Tower of Londinium" scene.
The rugby game , in which one of the teams accidentally gets the barrel of magic potion instead of wine. Dogmatix is given a bone and the villagers enjoy their banquet. Rotomagus Rouen : Asterix and Obelix make their way to the Normandy region, where a Roman patrol recognizes them. Asterix and the Roman Agent At the beginning of the book, Caesar asks his advisors for ideas on how to deal with the Gauls. The grateful Norman wastes no time clubbing the foolhardy legionary over the head.
It was a tribute to Albert Uderzo on his 80th birthday by 34 European cartoonists. He refuses to pay, and they simply continue on The order of the day is: stop them at any cos The adaptation is similar to the book the main difference being that Dogmatix accompanies his master to Britain. Vitalstatistix: [from inside the hut] But, Impedimenta, I have to sit at the head of the table!
Based on the French stereotype that Corsican cheese has a smell that would knock an elephant unconscious. This is made doubly funny in the animated version when Obelix' descent involves knocking a legionary into a wall to create a legionary-shaped indentation, and then Asterix' ascent involves converting the indentation into a legionary-shaped hole. An apology 3. And when Rhetoric finally tastes the potion, he tests his new strength
These were included in an exhibition on Goscinny's life and career, and Asterix, in London's Jewish Museum in