French Publishers Logos

A Quick Guide to Franco-Belgian Comics Publishers

There are lots of comics publishers in France, but I’m going to focus on the few that seem the biggest to me, and the ones who have books I’ve read before.

Feel free to add your suggestions to the comments below, and I’ll make additions where appropriate.  I’m really aiming at the 80% or 90% of the market that the biggest publishers below may represent, plus any that I just find interesting.

For you Twitter users, I’ve created a list named “BD Publishers” with all of the below publishers are on.

If you’re looking for suggestions as to what to do with this, I would suggest clicking through on the links to the publishers’ websites and perusing their catalog and the sample pages for each book.  There’s lots of cool stuff you can trip across that way.

 

 

The Publishers of France

 

Bamboo

Bamboo Editions BD logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Bamboo.fr

Twitter: @bamboo_edition

Biggest Titles: “The Profs”, “Les Rugbymen”

This is the publisher that produces “Bamboo Mag.”

They do lots of all-ages friendly single page gag humor strips. The site has generous previews, so you can see lots of pages before buying anything.

They have a new book, “Mes Premieres Fois” (“My First Time”) that has a good hook: each page is the first time the lead character is doing something, and the hilarity that results.  I should add that to my next list of books that need to be translated.

 

Casterman

Casterman BD logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Casterman.com

Twitter: @CastermanBD

Biggest Titles: “Tintin”, “Les Cites Obscures”, “Corto Maltese”

Based in Belgium, but owned by an Italian company.  They publish “Tintin,” so they’re in pretty good shape.

 

Cinebook

Cinebook BD in English logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Cinebook.co.uk

Twitter: @CinebookLtd

Biggest Titles: “Lucky Luke,” “Valerian and Laureline”

Cinebook is responsible for the most printed number of BD titles in English.  They’re past 60 volumes on “Lucky Luke”, alone.  Every month, they churn a few more out.  If you want to read “Valerian” ahead of the movie, Cinebook is where you want to go.

 

Dargaud

Dargaud BD logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Dargaud.com

Twitter: @EditionsDargaud

Biggest Titles: “Blake and Mortimer,” “Blacksad”, “Ken Games“, “Isaac the Pirate”, “XIII”

I admit that the “Biggest Titles” there is a little more random than usual. Dargaud’s catalog is very deep. It was tough to find names I recognized to include here.  So let’s just say that Dargaud’s diverse catalog is its strength.

 

Delcourt

Delcourt BD logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Editions-Delcourt.fr

Twitter: @DelcourtBD

Biggest Titles: “Dungeon”, “Josephine

Like Dargaud, they have an impressively deep catalog, so forgive my choices of titles above if I’m missing the elephant in the room.

Something I randomly noticed recently: Delcourt published an entire series of political satire on France’s President Sarkozy, done in the style of “Asterix.”  The thing ran a half dozen albums.  That’s impressive.

 

Dupuis

Dupuis BD Logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Dupuis.com 

Twitter: @EditionsDupuis

Biggest Titles: “Spirou”

They have Spirou.  That’s all they need to keep going.  This is where you’ll get the biggest collection of albums done in the Franquin/Peyo/etc. school of art, so they’re always worth keeping an eye on.

 

Europe Comics

Europe Comics BD in English logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: EuropeComics.com

Twitter: @EuropeComics

Europe Comics is not a publisher. They’re more like an industry effort, dedicated to bringing more comics from Europe to the English speaking world.  They’re the distributors of the most English-language BD around, primarily through Izneo and Comixology.

I include them here, anyway, because they are a very important part of the efforts to bring English readers to Franco-Belgian comics.  And on the major digital distributors, they’re treated as a publisher.

 

Glenat

Glenat BD Logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Glenat.com

Twitter: @GlenatBD

Biggest Titles: “Titeuf”, The new Mickey Mouse books

Glenat also reprints a lot of American comics from Image Comics, including “The Wicked and the Divine” and “Five Ghosts”. They also do a bunch of Disney books, like the Carl Barks library and the new Mickey Mouse titles from creators like Lewis Trondheim, Cosey, and Regis Loisel.

It’s based in Belgium and was founded by a man who started in publishing with a Smurfs fanzine in 1969.

Humanoids

Humanoids logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Humanoids.com

Twitter: @humanoidsinc

Biggest Titles: “Heavy Metal,” “Metabarons,” “Incal”

Humanoids has a direct English language presence already, and has for as long as I’ve known them.  Mostly, they’re known for publishing the various strains of “Metabarons” books, and a lot of Alejandro Jodorowski’s work.  Their content is mostly adventure oriented stuff aimed at men.  This is not the publisher you go to for a good laugh, but they still have some impressive stuff.

 

L’Association

L'Association BD logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: Lassociation.fr

Twitter: @lassociation

Biggest Titles: “Persepolis”, “Pyongyang”

L’Association was set up 25 years ago as an alternative independent publisher by several cartoonists, most of whom went mainstream and then left.  Some eventually came back.  It’s all a bit of a soap opera, but it produced some critical favorites in the 90s, like “Persepolis,” Jim Woodring’s “Frank”, and Guy Delisle’s “Pyongyang.”

 

Le Lombard

Le Lombard BD logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: LeLombard.com

Twitter: @LeLombard

Biggest Titles: “Thermal”, “Clifton”, “I.R.$.”, the works of Hermann, “The Smurfs”

They publish some Smurfs books that aren’t the original Smurfs stories, plus some of Peyo’s non-Smurfs work, like “Benny Breakiron”, which Papercutz translated for America.

They’re owned by the same people who own Dupuis and Dargaud, though are independently operated.

 

Soleil

Soleil BD logo

Wikipedia Link

Website: SoleilProd.com

Twitter: @editions_Soleil

Biggest Titles: “Lanfeust de Troy”, “Sky Doll”, “Ekho”

Soilel works with Delcourt on distributing their books in Europe.  Nearly a decade ago, they had a short-lived licensing program with Marvel.  “Sky Doll” first saw print in America that way, for one example.  I loved “Ythaq,” even if Marvel never published the final volume.  (That’s OK, it’s available in English digitally now.)

They also publish “Lanfeust” and all its assorted spin-offs. That brand is a beast in publishing.

1 Comment

  • JC LEBOURDAIS May 18, 2017 at 2:58 am

    Gallimard
    Urban Comics
    Panini
    The list goes on and on and on

    Reply

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