The Mechanoid Associates by Paul Gillon

January 1, 2021|In General

The world was different in the early 80s. No internet meant limited paths to new information. And for me as a teenager living in a small Canadian town, we were even more isolated from the dynamism of large cities. So when I discovered that Heavy Metal magazine existed on the newsstand, it was my first exposure to European comics and their creators, as well as some of the most progressive North Americans: Jean ‘Mœbius’ Giraud, Enki Bilal, Caza, Philippe Druillet, Richard Corben, Howard Chaykin and many more.

One of the earliest stories I read was a simple romantic comedy done with robots titled “Mademoiselle, My Wife” (“Mademoiselle, Ma Femme”) by Paul Gillon in the January 1982 issue of HM. I was immediately drawn to Gillon’s stylistic similarities to Dick Giordano, a prominent American comic book artist.

Recently, I acquired a copy of Les Mecanoïdes Associés, the story collection that “Mademoiselle, Ma Femme” comes from. Published in 1982, Gillon was awarded the Grand Prix de la ville d’Angoulême that year. The Grand Prix is a lifetime achievement award given annually during the Angoulême International Comics Festival to a comics author. It is considered the most prestigious award in Franco-Belgian comics.

Heavy Metal was incredibly important in broadening North American appreciation for international comics. However, a number of creators over the years have had reservations about the quality of its English translations. As an exercise, I did the first page of “Mademoiselle, Ma Femme” and achieved results that were different enough that I was encouraged to continue. In addition, I wanted to see what the story might feel like in colour.

Included here are an updated cover design, a half-dozen translated pages, and two which are coloured. I sent the package to Humanoids in the US, and they replied that they no longer held the rights to Les Mecanoïdes Associés. So if there’s someone out there who knows who this should be put in front of, I’d be grateful for your assistance.

Les Mecanoïdes Associés - Heavy Metal


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