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Gil Jourdan

Gil Jourdan

Gil Jourdan is a Belgian detective comic strip created by Maurice Tillieux. It is considered a great combination of mystery, adventure and humour, and a masterpiece of European comics. In 1956 the Belgian comic Héroïc Albums ceased publication. Felix, the adventures of a young bespectacled detective written and drawn by Maurice Tillieux, was among the casualties, but returned in Spirou magazine as Gil Jourdan, though without the glasses.

Jourdan made his first appearance in a rather original manner: in issue 962 of Spirou, the bungling police Inspector Crouton takes wisecracking burglar Libellule out of prison in order to proceed to a reconstruction of a theft for which he has been arrested. Libellule is then snatched from right under Crouton's nose by a young man named Gil Jourdan. Jourdan is a private investigator in need of a big break and he thinks that Libellule's burglary skills could be useful in exposing a gang of popaïne [sic] smugglers.

Once the smugglers' ring had been captured, the trio of Jourdan, Libellule and Crouton would proceed to handle other cases which sometimes took them from France to South America and the Middle East, Libellule and Crouton providing the comic relief which contrasted with Jourdan's earnest nature. Looking on was Queue-de-Cerise, Jourdan's secretary who sometimes also helped out in the investigations.

Gil Jourdan is a Paris-based detective. A Bachelor of Law ("I started very early"), he is young, earnest, shrewd and cool-headed. No mystery can stand up to him and he has quite a merit in solving them given the people he has to work with. From the start Jourdan was hardly the sort of hero who was out for Justice in itself. His main motivation was earning money and exposing a gang of drugs smugglers was really a means of obtaining a big break from which he profited in many ways.

Belgium, 1999, Gil Jourdan


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