In his fine Threepenny Review essay French Without Tears, Luc Sante (whose last name is pronounced SAHNT [according to the author himself, who was kind enough to drop by the comment section to correct my mistaken two-syllable version]) reminisces about the process by which, as a young immigrant from Belgium, he settled into English without losing French; it contains the following delightful passage on the glories of French as used in comics:
But I had a fortuitous link to the world of francophone children: my father’s sister and her husband, small-town newsagents, subscribed me to my favorite Belgian comic magazine. I read Spirou every week for ten years, and through it subcutaneously absorbed not just the living language but also a sense of daily life in a Belgium that was then changing much more rapidly than my parents realized. The comic weeklies (the others were Tintin and Pilote, the latter published in France) had no American equivalent; they combined about a dozen serial comic strips, on double-page spreads, with a handful of single-page gags, along with games, contests, educational tidbits, and some prose fiction I never so much as glanced at. I didn’t care much about stories; I cared passionately about graphic style, and this affected my reading—I disdained the ostensibly serious yarns, with their conventionally realist draftsmanship, in favor of the wildest and funniest drawings. The funny strips also happened to be the most unbridled in their use of language, reveling in the singular ability of French to generate wordplay, puns in particular.