Mort & Phil
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Mort & Phil (Spanish: Mortadelo y Filemón) is a Spanish comic series, published in more than a dozen languages. It appeared for the first time in 1958 in the children's comic-book magazine Pulgarcito drawn by Francisco Ibáñez. The series features Mort (Spanish: Mortadelo), the tall, bald master of disguise named after mortadella sausage, and his bossy partner, the shorter, pudgier Phil (Spanish: Filemón) Pi. Initially, they were private detectives operating as Mortadelo y Filemón, Agencia de Información, but now both serve as secret agents in the T.I.A. (a spoof on CIA), the Técnicos de Investigación Aeroterráquea (Aeroterrestrial Investigation Technicians). "Tía" is the Spanish word for "aunt".
|Mort & Phil|
|Genre||Humor, Political satire, Slapstick, Farce, Adventure|
|Publication date||20 January 1958–present|
|No. of issues||194|
|Main character(s)||Mortadelo, Filemón, El Súper, Ofelia and Bacterio|
|Written by||Francisco Ibañez|
The series frequently uses slapstick humour whereby the characters constantly suffer mishaps - such as falls from heights, explosions, and being crushed by heavy objects. Thanks to cartoon physics, the effects rarely last more than one panel.
Mort and Phil are a pair of idiots, and no matter what kind of mission they are assigned they always manage to get it wrong. The results are almost invariably extremely violent, and most often directed towards Phil. At the T.I.A. (Spanish for "aunt", a parody of the CIA), which combats "enemy organisations" like R.A.N.A. ("frog") or A.B.U.E.L.A. ("grandmother"), they interact with their boss, the bad-tempered Superintendente Vicente; with Professor Bacterio, a black-bearded, disastrous scientist parodying James Bond's Q; and with the fat, blonde secretary Ofelia, a parody of Moneypenny, whose attempts at seducing Mort or Phil always fail.
Outside Spain, the series is especially popular in Germany as Clever & Smart. After the 1980s, the albums have featured current news, like computer sabotage, the AVE, Islamic terrorism, Spanish and European politics, and specials for the Olympic Games and the football World Cup.
Ibáñez likes to introduce whimsies unrelated to the action, especially in front covers. Examples have included a water tap sprouting from a tree, two mice chatting, and a vase containing a foot or an eggplant. In the final page of the album El 35 aniversario (1993), featured a New York scene with an aeroplane crashing into the World Trade Center. This attracted attention after the 9/11 attacks of 2001.
Ibáñez issues several albums a year. One animated series and some animated films were also produced. There are two live-action movies based on the series, one of them made in 2003 in Spain titled La gran aventura de Mortadelo y Filemón (Mort & Phil: The Big Adventure). A second movie was released in 2008, Mortadelo y Filemón. Misión: salvar la Tierra (Mort & Phil. Mission: Save Earth), marking the 50th anniversary of the series.
Mort is a bald detective with pebble glasses and a long nose who usually wears a black frock coat. He is always fighting with Phil, his partner, mostly because he tends to mess things up, usually to Phil's discomfort: his profound lack of skills to make his disguises believable and common sense have often made him a danger to everyone around him. His favourite hobby is wearing all sorts of (sometimes outrageous) disguises - professional and historical clothes and gear, animals, inanimate objects, even small-sized vehicles like miniature blimps and mopeds - which he mostly dons for special tasks or when he is on the run from Phil or his boss, and which all include his signature collar which obscures part of his mouth. He holds a grudge against Bacterio because he used to have lush hair until Bacterio offered him a supposed medicine against baldness, which actually made his hair fall out. His real name, Mortadelo, comes from "mortadela", a kind of sausage.
Phil Pi (Filemón Pi)/"Jefe"Edit
Mort's partner and friend. He only has two hairs on his head and wears a white shirt with a black bowtie and red trousers. He usually insults Mort because Mort is quite clumsy, but is often at the receiving end of any mishaps which come their way, mostly in the shape of their outraged boss. Mortadelo habitually addresses him as "Jefe" (Spanish for "chief" or "boss").
As the leader of the two-man team, Phil is an educated man and an expert in a variety of fields. In the movies, however, Filemón seems to be just as ditzy as Mortadelo, but his "bad luck streak" drastically increases (especially in the animated movie Mortadelo and Filemon: Mission Implausible).
Vicente /"El Superintendente"Edit
Called for short "Súper" or just "El Súper", Vicente is Mort and Phil's boss. While he, as the head of the organisation, lives in splendour, indulging himself in expensive beverages and Cuban cigars, he keeps the T.I.A.'s operatives on an extremely tight budget. Vicente is bald and has a dense moustache, which makes him the object of mocking abuse by his underlings as a human walrus. He is very short-tempered and usually gets angry with Mort and Phil because they fail in their missions, making a mess of everything - occasionally at the expense of his own possessions. Just as often, however, he ends up as the one being chased by his underlings, as his frequently short-sighted assignments cause them no end of grief. He usually fails in initially introducing the missions properly to Mort and Phil, who run away to ridiculous hiding places at the first thought. He owns a variety of wild animals that he uses to coerce the pair.
The T.I.A.'s black-bearded scientist and chief inventor. Mort blames him for his baldness (he had tried a new hair-strengthening concoction on Mort's then-lush mane, which made the hair fall out instead) and therefore the doctor is the unwilling prime recipient of Mort's practical jokes. His inventions, which are intended to assist Mort and Phil in their assignments, often fail quite spectacularly, mostly because they either achieve the opposite of what they are supposed to do, or work perfectly but fail at the most inconvenient moment. His name comes from bacteria.
The fat and vain secretary of Superintendente Vicente. She is still single and would like to become involved with someone (usually with Mort), but so far her attempts have been in vain. She is quite touchy her lack of luck with a relationship and being called fat; she reacts with corresponding violence when either of topics are brought up; and with her considerable weight, this is nothing to be ignored. She was the first female character created for the series.
The bombshell secretary of El Súper. Both Mort and Phil have a huge crush on her (much to Ofelia's chagrin), but she is not interested. This character disappeared from the series after only 24 volumes.
The creator of the series himself has a number of cameo appearances, either by name or in cartoon form. Mostly he is portrayed as the bald and bespectacled "Artist of the Nation", in perhaps the same league as Pablo Picasso. On several occasions, the series' characters often long to be "as rich as Ibáñez".
"Rompetechos" is a small man in a black suit, with an oversized head, receding black hair and a small moustache. He is always put in as a comic relief character; his short-sightedness causes him to react in ways which causes some inconvenience to Mort and Phil if they happen to cross his path. He has his own comic series (little known outside Spain) and makes cameo appearances in Ibañez's other works.
Vicente's boss (and the only person who he ever shows deference to). His appearance changes constantly throughout the series. In recent appearances has been replaced by a caricature of the President of the Government of Spain.
The wife of Vicente (also with an ever-changing face). She is in charge of their household.
The giant agent of the T.I.A. He usually has to hunt down Mort and Phil because they do not want to do their missions. A rather minor character, his face has changed many times in the past. Many other agents appear, most of them having descriptive surnames ending in "-ez" ("Bestiájez" comes from "bestia", beast).
Tete Cohete (lit. "Tete Rocket") is a fifteen-year-old boy who is an enthusiastic amateur mechanic and inventor. He habitually tinkers with mechanical devices, turning many of them into rocket-powered (hence his name) or hazardous contraptions, and because he neglects to warn other people about his modifications, often causes a lot of grief to any adults in his vicinity.
Tete Cohete was the main protagonist for another Ibáñez comic series which ran from 1981 to 1986. He makes infrequent cameos in other Ibáñez titles, particularly Mortadelo y Filemón and El botones Sacarino.
In order of publication:
Between 1969 and 1971Edit
Between 1972 and 1974Edit
Between 1975 and 1976Edit
Between 1977 and 1979Edit
Between 1980 and 1981Edit
Between 1982 and 1983Edit
Between 1984 and 1985Edit
Between 1986 and 1987Edit
Between 1988 and 1989Edit
Between 1990 and 1992Edit
Between 1993 and 1994Edit
Between 1995 and 1996Edit
Between 1997 and 1998Edit
Between 1999 and 2000Edit
Between 2001 and 2003Edit
Between 2004 and 2008Edit
- ¡Rapto tremendo!
- Atenas 2004
- El señor de los ladrillos
- Mortadelo de la Mancha
- Prohibido fumar
- ¡El carnet al punto!
- El kamikaze Regúlez
- Mundial 2006
- ¡Bajo el bramido del trueno!
- El dopaje...¡qué potaje!
- Euro Basket 2007
- ¡...Y van 50 tacos!
- ¡Venganza cincuentona!
- ¡El dos de mayo!
- Pekín 2008
- Gasolina... ¡la ruina!
Between 2009 and 2017Edit
- ¡En la Luna!
- ¡Por Isis, llegó la crisis!
- Nuestro antepasado, El Mico
- La gripe "U"
- Mundial 2010
- Marrullería en la Alcaldía
- Chernobil... ¡Qué cuchitril!
- ¡A reciclar se ha dicho!
- Jubilación... ¡a los noventa!
- La bombilla... ¡chao, chiquilla!
- Londres 2012
- El coche eléctrico
- La litrona...¡vaya mona!
- Mundial 2014
- Contra Jimmy el Cachondo
- El Tesorero
- Río 2016
- ¡El capo se escapa!
- Sueldecitos más bien bajitos
- Drones Matones
- ¡Miseria, La Bacteria!
- El 60 Aniversario
Between 2018 and 2020Edit
Between 1965 and 1970, Rafael Vara directed 16 short animated films which were united in two films (Festival de Mortadelo y Filemón and Segundo festival de Mortadelo y Filemón). In 1970 he made a proper feature film, El armario del tiempo.
Video game adaptationEdit
A video game based on Mort & Phil, entitled El sulfato atómico, was developed by the Spanish company Alcachofa Soft, creator of Drascula: The Vampire Strikes Back. It sold above 40,000 units. According to its lead designer, it was developed on a small budget.
In other languagesEdit
- Afrikaans: Rommel en Drommel
- Arabic: شاطر و ماكر (Smart and Cunning)
- Catalan: Mortadel·lo i Filemó
- Chinese: 特工二人组
- Czech: Clever & Smart
- Danish: Flip og Flop
- Dutch: Paling en Ko
- French: Mortadel et Filémon (formerly also Futt et Fil)
- German: Clever & Smart (formerly also Flip & Flap)
- Greek: Αντιρίξ και Συμφωνίξ (Antirix kai Symfonix; Antirix "He who disagrees", Symfonix "He who agrees")
- Hungarian: Mortadelo és Filemón
- Italian: Mortadello e Polpetta
- Japanese: モートとフィル
- Norwegian: Flipp og Flopp (earliest pocket editions), Clever & Smart
- Polish: Mortadelo i Filemon
- Portuguese: Mortadelo e Salaminho (Brazil), Mortadela e Salamão (Portugal)
- Romanian: Mortadelo și Filemon
- Russian: Морт и Фил (Мортадело и Филемон) (Mort i Fil (Mortadelo i Filemon))
- Slovak: Clever & Smart
- Slovene: Mortadelc pa File
- Swedish: Flink & Fummel
- Turkish: Dörtgöz ile Dazlak
- Finnish: Älli ja Tälli (earlier Nopsa ja Näpsä)
- Serbo-Croatian: Zriki Švargla i Šule Globus
- "Mortadelo y Filemón llegan al cine de la mano de Javier Fesser: Ibáñez y la viñeta profética del 11-S: "¡Qué quince días pasé!"". El País. Prisa. 4 February 2003. Archived from the original on 20 May 2011. Retrieved 26 December 2018.
- García-Albi, Inés (13 January 1995). "Mortadelo y Filemón 'invaden' Antena 3". Elpais.com (in Spanish). Madrid: Prisa. Retrieved 7 December 2010.
- Antonio Tausiet. "La gran aventura de hacer una película". La Incineradora (in Spanish). Retrieved 7 December 2010.
- Prada, Carolina (13 July 2000). "Desarrolladores "made in Spain"". El Mundo. Retrieved 29 July 2019.
- El Bárbaro (26 January 2015). "Incompetentes habituales: Mortadelo, Filemón y la TIA". Meristation (in Spanish). As.com. Prisa. Retrieved 29 July 2019.
- "Historia de la compañía". Alcachofa Soft S.L. (in Spanish). 2009. Archived from the original on 3 August 2018. Retrieved 29 July 2019.