belphegor1982: (black and white me)
[personal profile] belphegor1982
As I was saying in my latest post, I ended up (to my surprise) falling pretty hard for a fairly obscure (in the English-speaking world) series of short novels and films set in what the author, Giovannino Guareschi, calls the "Little World"; it's a rural area of the Po Valley in the years after the end of WW2 (so basically 1946-1969, the dates he published the stories), and a little town (which has no name in the stories, but Brescello in the films) whose Communist mayor and Catholic priest are constantly at odds, fierce rivals and also loyal friends.

They both fought in WW1 (more or less willingly), went up in the mountains to fight the Germans after the Italian armistice in WW2, and now they fight each other on everything and anything (with fists, words, rifles, sticks - anything they can grab), mostly for political reasons. Each is also probably the other’s closest friend, and they help each other out without even thinking in times of need. Here’s a longer explanation (of sorts) of why I love these two idiots so much.

So I did a couple of pages worth of doodles to "look" for Don Camillo's and Peppone's faces. Here's Peppone's. If the file is too large, it might show up better on my DeviantArt page here.

Little world doodles - Peppone
Here's Don Camillo's page; I draw him a little leaner now, but on the whole my design hasn't changed. For context, in one of the stories of the first book (some of which made it into the second movie), the little town hosts a boxing match between their local champion and the city champion. The local guy does well until the city champ delivers a dirty blow, which enrages our Comrade Mayor Peppone so much (not that it usually takes a lot to get him riled up anyway) that he jumps on the ring to take on him himself. Now Peppone’s a burly fellow who knows a thing or two about fighting… Except he’s so angry he can’t see straight, so the other guy lays him out pretty quickly. Funnily enough, someone else then jumps on the ring and proceeds to kick the champion’s arse, to the delight of the townspeople :3 (DeviantArt page here.)

Little world doodles - Don Camillo
Now, this is the first drawing I actually published (on my tumblr, the-french-belphegor.tumblr.com); since I spent some time looking for their faces as adults, I thought I'd imagine what they would look like as kids. I think a major part of Giuseppe detto Peppino comes from this drawing :o) (On DeviantArt here)
Bambini
And one last more. I'm putting the explanation/context under the "read more", too, because whoo-hoo this got long... (aaand on DA here.)

Little world stories

  • “A Confession” is the very first Don Camillo story Giovannino Guareschi wrote. Great introduction to the characters and their little world. And yes, in that case everything can be solved by a kick in the arse :D

  • “The Defeat” - heh. Wouldn’t you like to know who won and who lost ;o) They both bribed the referee anyway

  • “The Whistle” is one of the saddest stories in all the books. Seriously. It’s got its own entry on the TV Tropes Tear-Jerker page for the series. Since I suck at perspective and three-dimensional drawing, the grave is much too small for a 13-year-old…

  • I couldn’t find “Autumn” anywhere but in my French and Italian copies of the first book. Anyway, it’s a short but great story about WW1, medals and commemorations. I love when those two lay down their arms and just talk.

  • “The Best Medicine” is about the straw that can break the camel’s back and send him to the hospital over what seems to be a trifle. At some point Don Camillo, recovering from a stroke, half-asks half-guilt trips Peppone into sneaking some proper food (the titular “best medicine”, I guess) into the hospital. Peppone brings bread, salami and Lambrusco, and with it a breath of air from their sweet valley and a taste of home, and soon enough his best enemy is back, for better and for worse :o)

That's it for now!
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