Sunday, 3 March 2013

Cigars of the Pharaoh

Published between 1932 and 1934 the fourth Tintin adventure, Cigars of the Pharoah, is in my view where Tintin begins to show the promise that will be amply fulfilled in later albums.

Cigars of the Pharaoh
Art by Herge

The wait is finally over and Tintin's supporting cast is emerging with the first appearance of the bungling detectives Thomson and Thompson.

Cigars of the Pharaoh
Art and script by Herge
Also making his first appearance is one of Tintin's arch-enemies, Rastapopoulos. The plot is the most sophisticated to date, the wordplay is developing and the characterisation is beginning to emerge.  Tintin's world is gaining personality and is much the better for it. The album was totally redrawn for the coloured version which was published in 1955 which led to some continuity issues such as Snowy referring to Marlinspike, Captain Haddock's ancestral home, which did not appear until The Secret of the Unicorn in 1942.  The plot continues into the next album, Herge's first classic tale, The Blue Lotus.

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