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Martine… is not as innocent as I remember

2009 November 17
Posted by Laurie

*Warning: this blog contains French. Unilinguals beware!

My childhood died slightly today. I was browsing the blogosphere, and one link led to another, when I came upon Herve Renard’s (not the Zambian football team’s manager) blog RvRenard, Le Blog. Herve’s blog postfrom April 21, 2009 features a column of re-titled Martine books.

Now, my entire education up to post-sec has been in French Immersion. As such, I learned to read primarily in French, with books like Dinomir le géant (about a tall purple, bicycle-riding dinosaur), Napoleon le chaton (about a little black and white kitten who would get in all sorts of trouble), and Martine, a Belgian series cataloguing the adventures of the title character.

Monsieur Renard’s blog shows original Martine covers, but with (ahem) updated titles…

For example, the original 1964 publication of Martine fait ses courses (Martine runs her errands)

Martine fait ses courses

Martine fait ses courses

Now, the image as seen on M. Renard’s blog; Martine n’a pas de culottes (Martine doesn’t wear underwear)

Martine n'a pas de culotte

Martine n'a pas de culotte

My poor childhood just suffered another injury; a Google search reveals that this phenomena is not limited to M. Renard’s blog. Apparently this abomination has become widespread! Oh well, all good things must come to an end, or to PhotoShop.

Til next time, dear readers.


P.S. – Attn Ad students – Check out the Nov. 13 post on M. Renard’s blog. Pretty cool new ads!!

4 Responses Leave One →
  1. Melanie Lee Lockhart permalink
    November 18, 2009

    I loved the Martine books, and was recently delighted to find a first-edition Remi et Aline (which was my first reader in school – I didn’t have English books in school until grade 3) in a used bookstore.

    If such nastiness has been committed against Remi et Aline, I don’t want to hear about it!

  2. November 18, 2009

    Hello Laurie, I went on your blog and I read your comment regarding covers of ‘Martine’. I laughed a lot. A very great text written with a lot of humour and irony. Obviously, I opened a door on the world which you did not know. The parody of the covers of Martine knows in France and in Belgium, a very important success. A kind of buzz. There is a software (Martine’s generator) which allows to change some covers. Each goes of its dose of humour there. If you go surfing on my blog, you will find several series of Martine’s covers (search : ‘Martine’). You can even try in English if you want and throw a new trends.
    If you like good ad’s, you can find on my blog a lot of creative ad’s (search: ‘créativité’).
    See you soon on my blog. Rv Renard

  3. Laurie permalink
    November 18, 2009

    Hervé, je n’avais aucune idée que c’était si populaire en Europe!!! Ici au Canada, Martine est (malheureusement) très peu connue! I’m glad you enjoyed reading my post; I thoroughly enjoy your blog!
    Meilleurs voeux,

  4. Laurie permalink
    November 18, 2009

    Melanie, I’ve yet to stumble across any insulting versions of Rémi et Aline, but if I do, I’ll be sure not to tell you! :)

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