Foreign Tongues

When it was launched in 1948, “Mitzi McCoy” appeared in about three dozen newspapers. Nearly all were located in the United States, but two were from Canada — the Farmer from Winnipeg, Manitoba and Montreal’s La Patrie. Being situated in Quebec, “Mitzi” was translated into French and ran as the more Gallic-sounding “Mitzi Morot.” When the strip rebooted as “Kevin the Bold,” it continued to run in a translated form in the pages of La Patrie.

As the popularity of “Kevin” grew, its reach spread further and it was translated into other languages. Often, the comics ran after their original publishing dates, as was the case when “Kevin el Denodado” appeared in Argentina in a magazine called Tit-Bits. (Though it sounds like a girlie mag, it was actually the Argentinian version of an eponymous British weekly first published in 1881).

“Kevin” eventually made his way to South Africa and was translated into Afrikaans, as shown in this comic from 1965.

KTB 1965 09.12 afrikaans

The comic was also repackaged into comic books for overseas markets, and besides the relatively common examples from Australia, it was translated into Norwegian and Swedish for Scandinavian readers. (More on the comic books later).

[French “Mitzi Morot” and “Kevin the Bold” images at top of post courtesy of Encyclopédie de la Bande Dessinée de Journal au  Québec 1918-1988]

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