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Jo, Zette & Jocko: The Secret Ray

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finlay
Member
#1 · Posted: 13 Aug 2004 00:00
I've never even heard of the Secret Ray; what is it?
jockosjungle
Member
#2 · Posted: 13 Aug 2004 00:01
Check out www.jockosjungle.co.uk for more info on The Secret Ray, it's their first adventure that is very rare in English but widely available in other markets.
Harrock n roll
Moderator
#3 · Posted: 13 Aug 2004 00:03
The Secret Ray (Le Rayon Du Mystère in French) is the English name for a two-part story from 1952, seperately known as Le Manitoba Ne Repond Plus and L'Eruption Du Karamako. I've had the French editions since the 80's but I recently bought the English version which was published in by Sundancer back in '94 in one volume. I don't know if they were ever made as seperate volumes in English but I love those covers to the French editions. In these books Jo Zette and Jocko get kidnapped by modern day pirates, almost get eaten by cannibals and have some underwater adventures - not Hergé's greatest work but good fun all the same.
decimusphostle
Member
#4 · Posted: 9 Sep 2004 04:00
I bought it from the Tintin Shop two years ago-I don't think its been published in two parts in English. The story is based on science fiction and is very entertaining, if a little fantasical and dated.
Modern-day pirates are using a kind of ray that halts engines and communication devices and an anesthaestic gas to stop steamers in the mid Atlantic, and then rob the passengers and steal all the valuable goods, making away on a submarine. Jo and Zette are introduced in this adventure when they go out to sea without permission on a rowboat and are picked up by the pirates. They become prisoners of the pirates, whose head is an unnamed mad scientist (probably Herge's most cliched stereotype character). They eventually reveal the pirates, escape, are recaptured, and outwit them in the end with the help of the US Navy. The story moves well, and the basic premise is clever-spiced up by plenty of action!
It's weakened though, by the villain-a bald, bearded, sunglass-wearing scientist who uses the stolen money to fund his experiments, one of which is to create a robot, which will use drained brainpower from a human-who almost ends up being Jo. However, the story is easy and entertaining to follow, and the pirates' lair, and underground network of tunnels, as well as the technology in the book, is very interesting. The English edition includes a commentary by Benoit Peeters. The story itself was written from 1935 to 1937 and was taken into color and published as two books in 1952.
BlueBlisteringBarnacles
Member
#5 · Posted: 14 Sep 2004 14:02
Hello, I happened to drop by the London Tintin shop during lunch time and there was 1 copy of the Secret Ray inside! I unfortunately didn't check the publishing year to see if there is a new print run though.
jockosjungle
Member
#6 · Posted: 14 Sep 2004 16:03
This would be the first I'd heard of a new release for the book.

Did the book have a light blue border around it? Was it definitely in English?

Rik
BlueBlisteringBarnacles
Member
#7 · Posted: 14 Sep 2004 16:19
It was definately in English, filed along with the other j+Z+J books, and was the version with the blue border, not the usual Herge style layout.
Harrock n roll
Moderator
#8 · Posted: 14 Sep 2004 19:59 · Edited by: Harrock n roll
I also saw The Secret Ray last week in the Tintin Shop. It was the 1994 Sundancer edition priced at £15. They had one on the shelf which was the display copy but I suspect there are more in their 'secret stash' cupboards.
jockosjungle
Member
#9 · Posted: 15 Sep 2004 10:11
Thats a fair price for the book, it might go for about £20 on ebay. I got mine for £15 from Abebooks.

Rik
BlueBlisteringBarnacles
Member
#10 · Posted: 15 Sep 2004 10:19
Maybe I'll pick up a copy at lunch, if there are any left. I wonder whether they'll republish it i the usual format in the future, seems strange to have it in such a format, does the series not sell very well?

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