Recap / Asterix at the Olympic Games

The Roman camp of Aquarium are in high spirits, as their own Legionary Gluteus Maximus has been chosen to take part in the Olympic games for Rome. Centurion Gaius Veriambitius hopes that by bringing back a Palm of Victory, they'll receive rewards from Caesar. Maximus goes out to train in the forest, and bumps into Asterix and Obelix. The Gauls' potion-powered antics put Maximus off his stride, sending the Legionary into a depression. Veriambitius goes to the Gaulish Village to complain about these unprovoked attacks, but all this accomplishes is inspiring the Gauls to take part in the Olympics themselves. Even pointing out that the only outsiders allowed to compete are Romans doesn't stop them; Gaul is part of the Roman Empire, isn't it?

The men of the village take a boat to Greece in high spirits, confident that the Magic Potion will allow them to sweep the events. This, of course, puts the Roman competitors in a bad mood. However, things turn around when a Grecian from the Olympics committee points out that stimulants like Magic Potion are prohibited. Without the Potion's strength, Asterix, the chosen representative of Gaul, does not win any events, and Obelix, on the grounds that he was permanently empowered as a baby, is not allowed to compete. However, the Roman athletes fail to win any events either. The Olympic Council, fearing that a lack of Roman victory will hurt Greece's tourism, creates an 'Roman only' event. Meanwhile, Asterix and Getafix launch their own plan; Right next to the Romans, the two stage a loud conversation on where they're keeping a cauldron of Magic Potion and how unguarded it is. And the Romans are interested...

At the event, the Romans do well; Superhumanly well, in fact. Asterix accuses them of using the Magic Potion, and in response, the Romans stick out their tongues- blue tongues. Asterix reveals that blue food coloring was added to the cauldron, and with their cheating exposed, the Romans are disqualified. As the only athlete not to take Magic Potion, Asterix is declared the winner. The Gauls return to their village and have their feast, and Asterix confides to Getafix that he gave his Palm of Victory to someone with more need. In Rome, Gaius Veriambitius and Gluteus Maximus present the Palm of Victory and reap rewards from Caesar.


  • Borrowed Catchphrase: When he sees the Gauls celebrating that they're Romans (as in, part of the Roman Empire) and eligible to compete in the Olympics, all Centurion Gaius Veriambitius can say is, "These Romans are crazy!"
  • Cheaters Never Prosper: Played with. Magic Potion is prohibited, and without it Asterix can't win any of the events. However, by tempting the other athletes by taking some, he gets them disqualifed and wins by default.
  • Creator Cameo: Goscinny and Uderzo appear as part of a frieze behind the Greek officials when the Gauls are registering for the games; in their dialogue, they are calling each other "Despot" and "Tyrant".
  • Every Episode Ending: Subverted; not only does the usual end-of-book banquet get a much smaller panel than the half page it gets in most other books, but Cacofonix is neither bound nor gagged, although he is sat next to a hammer-carrying Fulliautomatix and looking very nervous.
  • Food Porn: When the Romans figure they're going to lose to the Gaul's magic potion, they lose all hope and party 24/7. When the smell of the sumptuous banquet reaches the Greek athletes, they revolt due to their, well, Spartan conditions.
  • Gratuitous English: The large and dim-witted athlete from Rhodes is named "Okéibos" (Okay boss) in the French version.
  • Hurricane of Puns: The sequence of athletic delegations entering the stadium is accompanied by a pun on each one (the Marathonians came running, Rhodes sent one representative, a colossus...).
  • Meaningful Name: Pugnatius, the Roman wrestler who challenges Asterix to a fight, disbelieving what he's heard about the Gaul's strength.
  • The Stoic: Most of the Greek spectators at the Olympic Games (with the notable exception of the brother of the wrestler from Rhodes) watch the games in stony silence, in stark contrast to the Gauls loudly cheering Asterix on his way. When the Spartan runners sweep the wreaths in the first race, their fans react by simply saying, "Sparta."
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: The ending; as the caption says, "For once, Caesar is pleased!" As are Gluteus Maximus and Centurion Veriambitius, who, after a booklong Humiliation Conga, receive their promotions after all.
  • Vacation Episode: The entire Gaulish village, save for the women, travel to Hellas, aka Greece.