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Category Archives: La Crypte Tonique

A Survey of Flemish Comic Strips Under Nazi Occupation

A Deceptive Crusade In Flanders Fields – Part 3/3[1]

by Danny de Laet

Translated by Lise Tannahill

Edited by Annick Pellegrin

 

Original publication: de Laet, Danny. « La BD flamande sous l’occupation : Entre croix gammée et croisade faussée. » La Crypte tonique septembre – octobre 2013: 35-44. Print.[2]

Lots of young people got their break with Henri Winkeler, who was already interested in animated cartoons before the war, so much so that he wanted to create a studio, funded by Wilfried Bouchery (who, after the war, would produce Claude Misonne’s animated version of Hergé’s Tintin adventure The Crab With The Golden Claws). To achieve this, he hired several students from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp: Bob de Moor, Ray Goossens, Jules Luyckx, Marcel Colbrandt and a few others including Jef Nys. This greatly displeased their tutor, Baron Opsomer, who threatened to expel them. Only Nys, after working on Smidje Smee for three days, would return to the fold.

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A Survey of Flemish Comic Strips Under Nazi Occupation

A Deceptive Crusade In Flanders Fields – Part 2/3[1]

by Danny de Laet

Translated by Lise Tannahill

Edited by Annick Pellegrin

 

Original publication: de Laet, Danny. « La BD flamande sous l’occupation : Entre croix gammée et croisade faussée. » La Crypte tonique septembre – octobre 2013: 35-44. Print.[2]

 

 

How Did The Situation Evolve?

 

The situation evolved in two ways. Firstly—as noted—with the disappearance of some existing media and then the emergence of replacement media, combined with the (political) evolution of those pre-invasion publications that remained. For some illustrators this meant certain promotion and considerable financial gain; for others, more cautious or politically opposed, it meant putting their careers on ice. Two young artists made the most of this new situation, by hook or by crook: DeBudt and Vandersteen.

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A Survey of Flemish Comic Strips Under Nazi Occupation

A Deceptive Crusade In Flanders Fields – Part 1/3

by Danny de Laet

Translated by Lise Tannahill

Edited by Annick Pellegrin

 

Original publication: de Laet, Danny. « La BD flamande sous l’occupation : Entre croix gammée et croisade faussée. » La Crypte tonique septembre – octobre 2013: 35-44. Print. [1]

 

 

By Way of Introduction

In 1940, the quiet beginnings of Flemish beeldverhaal (that is to say, bande dessinée in Dutch) almost came to nothing. The German invasion of Belgium in May 1940 had something to do with it, putting an end to several publications of this kind, thus depriving several illustrators of their livelihood and leaving them unemployed.

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Les Aventures du professeur Nimbus

Tightrope Walker During the Occupation – Part 4/4[1]

by Antoine Sausverd

Translated by Annick Pellegrin

Edited by Harriet Earle

Original publication: Sausverd, Antoine. « Les Aventures du professeur Nimbus : Funambule sous l’occupation. » La Crypte tonique septembre – octobre 2013: 13-18. Print.[2]

Condemnation in absentia

Les Aventures du professeur Nimbus by Daix came to an end on 17 August 1944 with Le Matin that fell apart in the besieged capital.[3]

Daix went into hiding and fled from Paris. His residence was searched. An arrest warrant was issued against him on 12 July 1945 for acts prejudicial to the security of the State. Daix, not having been apprehended, was judged in absentia at the court of justice of the Seine department on 8 January 1946. The exposé that led to this condemnation summarised the charges: Daix was a “collaborateur notoire” [notorious collaborator]. The tribunal reproached Daix for his denunciation of cartoon animators, and his involvement in 1942 in the “organe pro-allemand” [pro-German organisation] La Voix ouvrière made matters worse for him. But his drawings of Nimbus would be judged as not containing political propaganda.

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Les Aventures du professeur Nimbus:

Tightrope Walker During the Occupation – Part 3/4[1]

by Antoine Sausverd

Translated by Annick Pellegrin

Edited by Harriet Earle

Original publication: Sausverd, Antoine. « Les Aventures du professeur Nimbus : Funambule sous l’occupation. » La Crypte tonique septembre – octobre 2013: 13-18. Print.[2]

“Pour les besoins de la propagande nationale” [For the Sake of National Propaganda]

In the summer of 1942, the Germans asked Daix to use the famous character professeur Nimbus to contribute to a propaganda operation. Daix then used this opportunity to take up his demands against Opera Mundi. On 4 August 1942 he wrote to the president of the Commissariat général aux questions juives [General Commissariat for Jewish Questions] (CGQJ): “Ma création graphique, le « Professeur Nimbus », m’est demandée afin d’être utilisée pour les besoins de la propagande nationale. Malheureusement et malgré mes efforts, je n’ai pu me libérer d’un contrat draconien signé en 1934 avec Opera Mundi (agence juive) et concernant Nimbus.” [My graphic creation, professeur Nimbus, has been requested from me in order to be used for the sake of national propaganda. Unfortunately and despite my efforts, I have not been able to get rid of a draconian contract signed in 1934 with Opera Mundi (Jewish agency) concerning Nimbus.] Daix attached to his mail an overview of the situation and documents, hoping “qu’une intervention de votre organisme me fera obtenir gain de cause.” [that an intervention on the part of your agency would help me to succeed].[3]

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