In Matthias  's collection
Bob Morane #27: L‘Empereur de Macao P.41 by William Vance - Comic Strip

Bob Morane #27: L‘Empereur de Macao P.41

Comic Strip
Page 40 + 41


Signed bottom right


In my view one of the great strenghts of the artist William Vance was his senseful and delicate inking.

No one I know used the inks in a featherlike way like he did (the hair of his woman or man are always stunning).
He also didn't shy away from delivering dark, dark pages, which are full of wonderfully inked landscapes, ships, rain, figures. Sadly this masterful usage of ink was quite often „killed“ in the published albums by truly awful colors that covered up most of his dark lines or fields in the panels and destroyed the overall mood.

I have the feeling that Vance's pages were getting darker at the end of the 70s and in fact much smaller in size of the paper used. When I compare these pages from "L'Empereur de Macao" with my earlier Bob Morane page ( then this page here is far smaller then just the large panel with the volcano alone.

These two pages (40 + 41) are all about darkness and light, it is perfect to see the morning dawn in the panels and the shady landscape.
In this board 41 all panels are superbly done, may it be the depiction of airplanes in the dawn of the morning or the shady nature or the portraits build in the page.


  • L'empereur de Macao
  • Dargaud
  • 05/1980
  • Page 41
  • Intégrale 9
  • Le Lombard
  • 06/2018
  • Interior page
  • L'Empereur de Macao
  • Altaya
  • 04/2013
  • Page 41

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About William Vance

William Vance, pseudonym of William van Cutsem, made his debut with some illustrations in the Dutch version of Tintin magazine. His first comic stories were generally biographies, but in 1964 he started his first series, 'Howard Flynn', about a navy officer. Vance's talent really revealed itself when he made the western series 'Ray Ringo' and the special agent series 'Bruno Brazil', which was written by Michel Greg. He then succeeded Gérald Forton on Henri Verne's 'Bob Morane' series, which was published in Femmes d'Aujourd'hui, Pilote and Tintin. While doing 'Bob Morane', Vance illustrated several other stories for Femmes d'Aujourd'hui, such as 'S.O.S. Nature', 'Mongwy', 'Rodric' and the 'Ramiro' series. Together with André-Paul Duchâteau, he made 'Bruce J. Hawker' from 1976 in Tintin and again Femmes d'Aujourd'hui. Highlight of his career became 'XIII', an espionage series written by Jean Van Hamme, inspired byLudlum's book 'The Bourne Identity'. Starting in 1984, 'XIII' is built around a character in search of his true identity. What follows is a series of exciting intrigues, government and military cover-ups, murder attempts and action scenes. Vance returned to the western genre in 1991 with illustrating the 'Blueberry' spin-off 'Marshall Blueberry' (text by Jean Giraud). Text (c) Lambiek