CAPITAINE KÉBEC

CAPITAINE KÉBEC

Pierre Fournier’s “Capitaine Kébec” appeared first in Les Aventures du Capitaine Kébec: a single issue which appeared in the fall of 1973 then in Titanic issues 5 to 7 which appeared in 1984.

As said earlier Pierre Fournier was the creator of “Capitaine Kébec” but it appears that the first story included collaboration with Françoise Barrette, Dan May and Réal Godbout (Fournier would later collaborate with Godbout on the “Michel Risque” series of graphic novels and the “Red Ketchup, l’agent fou du FBI” stories and graphic novel). The following stories of “Capitaine Kébec” were Pierre’s alone.

In the first story “Capitaine Kébec” representing the new Quebec that was shrugging off both church and state, battled an Establishment villain, Frogueman. Frogueman (a former policeman) represented the establishment. It’s outrage at the lack of respect for authority in youthful Québec and its attempt to destroy this new independence by destroying the youthful “Capitaine Kébec”. The establishment’s weapon of choice was a gun that fired pea-soup a traditional food of the old Québec habitants. Strangely, given Québec’s indépendance movement, “Capitaine Kébec” was rescued by a young Anglo-Canadian admirer. Such is the complexity of Québecois attitudes. The young Anglo then gave him up to the servant (?) of the mysterious master of a deserted monastery which contained a laboratory. How this all was supposed to resolve itself is not known since no more Les Aventures du Capitaine Kébec appeared, a fate quite common among Canadian cartoon stories.

When “Capitaine Kébec” reappeared about a decade later, in Titanic the focus was not on him but on a TV journalist named Josée. She set out to write a piece on him for a TV program Profil. Through the vehicle of her research Fournier developed a “Capitaine Kébec” profile that suggested he was only one of a series of such heroes that went back to the 1920’s. Josée finally met him but by this time he had been wounded by the villain Bébitte. Josée donned “Capitaine Kébec’s” costume and defeated Bébitte. She then discovered she had become the next “Capitaine Kébec” thus continuing the line.

“Capitaine Kébec” like “Captain Canada” is a story which takes the motif of the costumed hero as the embodiment of established values and attitudes, turns that motif upside down and uses it to question and criticize those same established values and attitudes. However, the creators of “Captain Canada” and Capitaine Kébec” take very different approaches in expressing this criticism. In “Captain Canada” establishment values and attitudes are questioned through a hero that is an establishment buffoon and attacks the alternate values. In “Capitaine Kébec” the hero embodies the alternative values and attitudes and is attacked by an establishment villain. Nevertheless, both stories express the same conflict: youth with new ideas and attitudes being attacked by those with established ideas and attitudes. This was a very common viewpoint held by youth in the 1970’s and 1980’s

 

MEDIUM:

PERIODICAL GRAPHIC ANTHOLOGY:

Cover:

Back: Illus., Pierre Fournier. L’Illustré, premier trimester 1974. (Captaine Kebec)

Content:

Advertising:

“Capitaine Kébec no 2 bientȏt”. Car. Pierre Fournier. L’Illustré, 8, September 1974. 27.

Serial:

Capitaine Kébec/Hors série.” Car., Fernand Choquette. L’Illustré, premier trimester 1974: 38..

“Le Grand Retour du Capitaine Kébec.” Car. Pierre Fournier. Titanic,5, Mars 1984:31 – 34.

.“Capitaine Kébec Contre Le Kidnappeur Automate.” Car. Pierre Fournier Titanic, 6, Avril 1984: 39 – 42.

“Capitaine Kébec: Le Dernier Round?” Car.Pierre Fournier Titanic, 7, Mai 1984:39 – 42..

Story:

Les Aventures du Capitaine Kébec, 1. Car. Pierre Fournier. Les Éditions de l’Hydrocéphale Entêté Inc., 1, troisième trimester 1973: 1-23.

SOURCE:

Book text:

“Capitaine Kébec”, Guardians of the North: The National Superhero in Canadian Comic- Book Art. Writ., John Bell. Ottawa: National Archives of Canada, 1992: 42 – 48. A catalogue for the exhibit of the same name.

Newspaper:

“The Great Canadian Superhero.” Writ., Henry Mietkiewicz. Toronto Star, 1 February 1992: J1.

GALLERY:

CAPITAINE KEBEC 1

Front cover. Car. Pierre Fournier. Les Aventures du Capitaine Kébec,1, troisième trimester 1973.

CAPITAINE KEBEC 2

Front cover. Illus. Pierre Fournier. Titanic, no. 7, Mai 1984.