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Obelix
Obelix
Theme:

Asterix & Obelix

Years:

2015

Obelix is one of the two main characters of the Asterix & Obelix franchise.

Background

Obelix is Asterix's closest friend (they even have the same birthday - although this is inconsistent with the comic Obelix and Co., where only Obelix's birthday is celebrated). He generally works as a menhir delivery man. His passions in life are hanging around with Asterix, hunting and eating wild boar, making and carrying his menhirs, and beating up Roman legionnaries (and occasionally collecting their helmets). Obelix has a little dog named Dogmatix (Fr. Idéfix), whom he adores. His parents live now in Condate (as seen in Asterix and the Actress) and his distant cousin Metallurgix, a golden sickle maker, lives in Lutetia (as seen in Asterix and the Golden Sickle).

Obelix's favourite food is roast wild boar which he usually hunts with Asterix, but he has a voracious appetite, and will try eating nearly anything with few exceptions; in Asterix and Obelix All at Sea and Asterix in Britain he seems to not like boiled boar. In fact, he eats nuts and oysters in the shell, and is completely oblivious to drugs, spicy food and poison, possibly due to the permanent effects of the magic potion. However, when he consumes alcohol, he gets very drunk very quickly, as seen for example in Asterix in Britain where he enjoys sampling different barrels of wine trying to find a barrel containing magic potion, or in Asterix and the Laurel Wreath, where both he and chief Vitalstatistix get drunk during a banquet, much to shame of the latter's wife Impedimenta. Although he has his own house, Obelix is occasionally shown staying overnight at Asterix's.

Obelix owns the quarry where he chisels the menhirs himself. It is never directly stated what the menhirs are used for, though it is hinted that they are just oversized knick-knacks; however they are probably a running-gag regarding the origins of the mystery surrounding Menhirs in ancient Europe, with the joke being that Obelix delivered them. Obelix usually trades the stones away for whatever he needs, resulting in the village having a literal field of menhirs.

Obelix is kind-hearted, but socially inept — possibly because his strength means that others have had to adapt to him instead of vice versa. He is still not completely aware of his own strength and almost invariably breaks any door he gently knocks on. He is frequently used as a human battering ram for opening locked doors or breaking through walls. Similarly, he is unaware that others do not share his superhuman strength, and shows great surprise when others are crushed by what he calls "a little menhir", or when Asterix attempts to explain to him that a small dog like Dogmatix cannot lift a menhir. He also has little interest in subjects of formal education or intellectual pursuits, since sheer strength usually solves his problems; he generally leaves any decisions to Asterix. However, Obelix is not completely stupid. In Asterix and the Normans he deduces from various clues that Cacofonix the bard has gone to Lutetia to pursue a career in popular music: this unusual display of intelligence on Obelix's part surprises Getafix. He also surprises Asterix in Asterix and the Black Gold by reeling off a dictionary definition of wild boar in conversation (including the Latin taxonomical classification). He can also be quite dangerous when angered.

While cheerfully violent and enjoying a good fight, Obelix is far from brutal or sadistic: he tends to view fighting as a game and is generally friendly and polite (to the point of inappropriate courtesy) towards his opponents. He extends this benevolence even towards the Romans, whom he rarely seems to view as oppressors but more as less-willing participants in his rough-housing. His other favored pastimes are dancing (which he apparently is very good at), and occasionally drinking goat's milk to excess (as he rarely imbibes in alcohol).

Like Asterix, Obelix is a bachelor, but he is easily smitten by a pretty face. He harbours a hopeless crush on Panacea, the daughter of Soporifix (one of the other villagers), and occasionally other young women, most notably Mrs. Geriatrix (which enrages her husband). However, one may think that he will eventually find a mate and have children since in Asterix and the Class Act, he is shown to be the founder of a long dynasty of French warriors that lasted well into the 20th century.

Obelix's trademark phrase is "These Romans are crazy" ("Ils sont fous ces romains": in the Italian translation, it is "Sono pazzi questi Romani", which can be shortened to S.P.Q.R., Rome's motto), although he has applied a variant of it to nearly every group he's met in his travels: "These Britons are crazy", "These Corsicans are crazy" etc. This remark is followed by him tapping his forehead. It is a parody of the quote "These Gauls are crazy", which Julius Caesar famously said while describing the Gauls' fighting style during his conquest of the region.

Notes

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