|Title||Asterix and the Falling Sky (2005)|
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Asterix and the Falling Sky is the thirty-third volume of the Asterix comic book series, by Albert Uderzo (story and illustrations). It was released on October 14, 2005.
The album is explained by Uderzo as a tribute to Walt Disney, who inspired him to become an artist. It is generally disliked by fans, mostly because Asterix albums tend to be classical, and this album has aliens from outer space and a different, far less detailed drawing style.
Uderzo had been adamant this was not to be the last Asterix album, saying in a Financial Times interview, “No, no, no, it is not the last. Certain journalists believed this because the cover was the mirror image of the first Asterix album. That is indeed the case but it was not at all my intention to suggest it would be the last album.”
Breaking with the more or less historical setting in previous albums, two rival outer space alien ships appear above the Gaulish village.
Before it, Obelix and Asterix were hunting boars, when they found one rigid. As they went back to the village, everyone is also rigid! Luckily, Getafix was in his normal state. Soon, they found a spaceship which an alien named Toon comes out of it. Soon, when the ship moved out, everything was normal again.
The evil aliens Nagma want to know the secret of the great weapon the Gauls have (Getafix’s potion), that is “known throughout the universe”, in order to conquer more planets. However a Tadsilweny called Toon comes to the village with the mission to destroy the weapon. Even the weapon wasn’t destroyed at all, Nagma was forced out of Earth in his defeat, erasing all memory of his visit due to his embarrassment over him being temporarily enlarged to giant size when he consumed the potion due to it being incompatible with his physiology.
The aliens are styled on the happy-faced Walt Disney and DC Comics superheroes of the American comic book style on one side, and futuristic robot and insect-like Japanese manga style on the other.
2006 Eagle Award for Best European Comic
According to Uderzo himself, this book is poking fun at certain American comics and at manga in general. Although he stated that he has no resentment against manga as a genre, Uderzo conceived the nagma alien invasion as a metaphor of the massive import of manga in Europe during the 2000s.
- The United States is famous for alien encounters.
- The Tadsilweny’s favourite food is hot dogs.
- Toon says their leader is called “Hubs”, an anagram of “Bush”.
- Toon wants to confiscate the village’s magical potion because it is a dangerous weapon. This is supposed to be an analogy to when the Bush Administration convinced the world that the Iraqis had secret weapons in the Gulf War and in the 2003 Invasion.
- Nagma is an anagram of manga.
- “Tadsilweny” is an anagram of Walt Disney.
- Akoaotaki, the great sage of Nagmas. Anagram of Takao Aoki, author and creator of the manga Beyblade
- Toon (from “toon”) looks like a purple Mickey Mouse, with small ears. In a scene, he even gets black as a side effect of magic potion, like Mickey. Asterix comments by saying that black suits him well.
- The design of the mothership of the Nagmas is based on the anime robot Grendizer. In the original French version, the smaller ships that it spits are called “Goelderas”, a name which literally means “rat faces”, but is written in a way reminiscent of the French name of Grendizer: Goldorak. It is to be known that the Grendizer cartoon series is/was extremely famous and popular in France. (In Spanish the small ships are called “Kara-Ratas”, which translates to the same thing although is also misspelled on purpose.)
- The golden armor of the Nagma leader could be a reference to the golden armors worn by the protagonists of the anime Saint Seiya, which was also famous in France.
- The “super clones” used by the Tadsilweny are similar to Superman, carry a shining green ring and have the face of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Toon also says that they can become bat or spider super clones. Toon also describes them as “security men” who “keep the peace”, in a way similar to the robot Gort from the classic science-fiction movie The Day the Earth Stood Still.
- Directly translated from French the original title is in fact “The Sky Falls on his Head”, which is the only thing the Gauls fear.
- Centurion Polyanthus – Polyanthus are a cultivated variety of primrose, with several flowers on one stalk, bred in vivid colours.
In other languages
- Catalan: El cel ens cau al damunt
- Czech: Nebe mu padá na hlavu
- Danish: Da himlen faldt ned om ørerne!
- Dutch: Asterix en het geheime wapen
- Finnish: Taivas putoaa niskaan
- German: Gallien in Gefahr
- Greek: Και ο ουρανός έπεσε στο κεφάλι τους
- Italian: Quando il cielo gli cadde sulla testa
- Norwegian: Det store himmelfallet
- Polish: Kiedy niebo spada na głowę
- Portuguese (Brazil): O Dia em que o Céu Caiu
- Portuguese (Portugal): O Céu Cai-lhe em Cima da Cabeça
- Serbian: Asteriks i nebo koje pada
- Spanish: ¡El cielo se nos cae encima!
- Swedish: Himlen faller ner över hans huvud