The fool, the androgynous and the hybrid: grotesque and carnivalesque elements in The Incal by Jodorowsky and Moebius

Antonella Di Nobile


The purpose of this study is to identify, by means of an analysis based on Bachtin’s works, the grotesque and carnivalesque elements of the popular comic culture in Jodorowsky and Moebius The Incal, in order to fully understand the message it is trying to convey. The analysis is primarily focused on three principal characters (grotesque figures par excellence) to establish a comparison between The Incal’s world and the Medieval carnival. In order to demonstrate Bachtin’s theory of ‘the dual body’ as “growth and immortality of the human rac”’, as “mankind’s historic progress”(Bakhtin, 1984: 324), the study proceeds by analysing the graphical and linguistical images of the “material bodily lower stratum” related to ‘scatological substances’, to the themes of ‘semen-fecundity’, ‘splitting of the body’, ‘aging’ and ‘pregnant death’. The result of the analysis is the identification of a positive and utopic message in a social satire based on a dystopian-science fiction narration.


The Incal; Jodorowsky; grotesque; carnival; science-fiction

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