Matt Broersma
(Matthew Broersma)

[contacted by Wouter Porteman]
Books of Matt Broersma (1971, USA):
Détour (Offissa Pupp collection, Coconino Press/Vertige Graphic)Le Grand Tour (Editions Fibib)Hawaii (Editions Fibib)Insomnia (Ignatz collection, Coconino Press/Vertige Graphic/Fantagraphics Books).

What makes Franquin so special?
To me it seems that he was able to tap into a different type of storytelling than had been done before, something more informal and direct. With a character like Gaston Lagaffe he was writing about everyday life in a way that you didn't usually see in a comic. His characters seem real, somehow... you could imagine going down to the pub with them.
What was your first contact with the man his work? What do you remember of it? Did you met him personal?
Franquin is almost unknown in English. I think I may have come across a translated edition of Spirou and Fantasio in California, by chance. I knew that Yves Chaland was a fan of Franquin, without really knowing anything about Franquin. Later, my French publishers explained more about him and introduced me to more of his books.
What is your favourable Franquin album, - adventure, - joke or - character and why? 
I haven't read many of his albums, but the one I like is a Gaston Lagaffe book.
Has Franquin influenced your work?
Not directly, but I think I've been influenced by some of his disciples, like Chaland.

What impact has Franquin on the comic world today?
I think he has a pretty big impact. A character like Gaston still seems very contemporary and perhaps relates to some of the 'intimiste' or 'real life' type of work that has been coming out since the early 1990s.