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Who controls Tintin?

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Pixie
Member
#1 · Posted: 24 Apr 2005 23:46
Who are Captain Haddock and the Thom(p)sons?

Many would answer:
Haddock: "Tintin's helper and good friend"
Thom(p)sons: "Clumsy agents who seem to run into Tintin on his adventures to add humor."

But I intend to prove, or at least put up for debate, a longer and less concise answer...

The main idea:

Tintin is, if you will, a puppet in the big show controlled by Captain Haddock, and sometimes the Thom(p)sons.

I will try to tell you why I think this...

The Crab with the Golden Claws:

In the beginning of this story, the Thom(p)sons invite Tintin to their apartment/office (?) to discuss some case of no big importance concerning counterfeit money.
By a coincidence (or is it?), Tintin finds a piece of the crab can, and from then on the adventure and plot starts to form.

I think the Thom(p)sons invited Tintin to the office and expected him to find this label of the crab can and that's what forms the plot of this story. I think the Thom(p)sons are told by their superiors to lead Tintin to this clue and make Tintin, and his adventurous mind, solve this case.

This also seems to be true as when Tintin is troubled by what Karaboudjan means or is, the Thom(p)sons suddenly calls him up and lets him know that it's a ship in the nearby harbour.

So the after getting their orders from the secret police the Thom(p)sons are leading Tintin into taking charge of the case.

Another odd thing:
Allan already knows of Tintin before he even appears on the docks with Terry (he tries to kill him by dropping boxes on him). How does he know of Tintin and how dangerous he can be? He has never met Tintin before, yet he plans to kill him. Allan appeared in Cigars of the Pharaoh but didn't meet Tintin at all in it.
I think Allan is aware of Tintin's potential (just like the Thom(p)sons are aware) and therefore tries to kill him.
To this day, Tintin is just a reporter. A lot of people must know of Tintin's potential by this time, all the while Tintin is totally unaware and just curious.

This is supported when Tintin is caught and tied and he says "Why am I tied?" and Allan replies "You know that already!" But Tintin doesn't know, he is just a tool used by the Thom(p)sons and their organization.

While all this is going on, Haddock is a secret agent on a mission to solve the drug-dealer case as well. He is working undercover as a drunk captain, and when Tintin comes into his cabin, he realizes his plans are destroyed and decides to work with Tintin, instead of against him.

So after getting out of the situation in his cabin he and Tintin obtain a rescue boat and neutralize several of the criminals on board. No question that Haddock is a professional.

Prisoners of the Sun:

Suspicious things also occur in this album.

Based on weak evidence Tintin convinces the police in Callao to search the whole of the Pachacamac. This must be after orders from the Thom(p)sons or Haddock.

A minute later, they run into the Thom(p)sons on the docks. The Thom(p)sons explain they have been sent by the police in St. Nazaire, but we all know that they are part of the secret police.

After jumping off the sabotaged train Tintin and Terry meet a man on a trolley. The man identifies himself as "the station leader" of the next station, but why is he coming from the wrong direction then? He is clearly informed of this accident by someone from the police.

Later in the story Tintin saves the day by reading that newspaper article, but who carried the article and kicked it to Tintin? Haddock of course.

Land of Black Gold:

In this album Haddock actually admits that he is more than just a normal sea captain. He tells Tintin that he is on a secret mission for S/S Untel.

Although Haddock is not (seemingly) involved in the plot, he suddenly arrives with a whole special SWAT-like team under his command and easily captures all the "bad guys."

Tintin and the Picaros:

In this album Haddock finally reveals his first name to Tintin. On page 31 he hesitates and says "Archibald, I think" the hesitation and the "I think" might be because it is not his real name, but a name given to him by the secret police, which he does not recall.

I think that many of Tintin's adventures are controlled by the Thom(p)sons and Captain Haddock to a certain extend. Tintin seems to be the brave, good-hearted and smart person and therefore a perfect weapon that the secret police can use against evil forces.

---------------
Note that the quotes in this thread might not be accurate as I own the Danish albums and not the English.


It is a Danish text that I found on a Danish Tintin website, and then translated into English. I find parts of this interesting and some parts unlikely. I believe that a lot of this can be true.

What do you think of this theory?
---------------
Source: R.S Johansen
jock123
Moderator
#2 · Posted: 26 Apr 2005 09:47
Welcome to the group!

As an exercise in making something of the texts we have been given, it is a plausible theory, if not one I would subscribe to myself.

As an exposition of an actual ploy by Hergé, I don’t think it holds water…
Tintinrulz
Member
#3 · Posted: 26 Apr 2005 10:09
Interesting but I don't think Herge would have thought that deeply about it at all.
GurraJG
Member
#4 · Posted: 26 Apr 2005 15:47
I'm just going to repeat what jock123 and Tintinrulz said: Interesting, but not something Hergé would have thought up.

-Gustav
Harrock n roll
Moderator
#5 · Posted: 27 Apr 2005 15:02 · Edited by: Harrock n roll
I don't think that there's any good evidence that Tintin was being “controlled” by Haddock or the Thom(p)sons either.

And I thought I'd pick up on a few niggly points...

Allan already knows of Tintin before he even appears on the docks with Terry (he tries to kill him by dropping boxes on him). How does he know of Tintin and how dangerous he can be? He has never met Tintin before, yet he plans to kill him. Allan appeared in Cigars of the Pharaoh but didn't meet Tintin at all in it.

One reason could be that the Japanese police detective, Bunji Kuraki, was kidnapped by the opium gang whilst trying to deliver a letter to Tintin to warn him about them. As Tintin didn't recieve this letter we can assume that the gang read it and so became aware of Tintin. And Tintin himself was already very famous (discussed in this thread How famous is Tintin ?) esp. if we think back to his previous adventures where his name had appeared in the newspapers or he was given a hero's welcome like in Soviets, Congo and America.

And although Allan appears in the colour version of Cigars (which was made in 1955, i.e. after Crab) it was a completely different character in the original 1932 b/w version.

Based on weak evidence Tintin convinces the police in Callao to search the whole ship of Pachacamac. This must be after orders from the Thom/p/sons or Haddock.

Don't forget at the beginning of Prisoners that the Chief Inspector at Callao mentions that Interpol had warned him they were coming so there was probably some international pressure on them to help with the case! (And although Tintin and Haddock don't present their evidence I'd say it was fairly good with Calculus' hat having being found when and where it was.)

After jumping off the sabotaged train Tintin and Terry meet a man on a trolley. The man identifies himself as "the stationleader" of the next station, but why is he coming from the wrong direction then? He is clearly informed of this accident by someone from the police.

I'm not sure why you think it's the wrong direction. Perhaps you're not realising that the coach which becomes loose rolls back in the opposite direction to the way it was originally travelling?
yamilah
Member
#6 · Posted: 27 Apr 2005 16:03
Nobody else but Herge controls Tintin and his fellow heroes, imho...
Pixie
Member
#7 · Posted: 28 Apr 2005 18:08 · Edited by: Pixie
I'm not sure why you think it's the wrong direction. Perhaps you're not realising that the coach which becomes loose rolls back in the opposite direction to the way it was originally travelling?

I would prefer you not adressing me as "you" since I obviously stated that "It is a danish text that I found on a danish tintin website, and then translated into english. I find parts of this interesting and some parts unlikely. I believe that a lot of this can be true."

Obviously, I had nothing to do with the text, other than translating it, so I wonder why you are adressing my, as if I made the mistakes.
Harrock n roll
Moderator
#8 · Posted: 29 Apr 2005 13:25 · Edited by: Harrock n roll
Ah, my apologies! I'm afraid I completely misunderstood the end of your first post but I see now you were referring to the whole text.

For the last paragraph in my post please read: “I'm not sure why they think it's the wrong direction. Perhaps they're not realising that the coach which becomes loose rolls back in the opposite direction to the way it was originally travelling?”
Karaboudjan
Member
#9 · Posted: 12 May 2005 16:51
Well thought out, but it doesn't really fit with the established portrayal of the Thompsons' stupidity (unless they're incredibly talented actors) or that Archie's behaviour genuinely does seem that of someone completely ravaged by drink when we first meet him. Plus it is TINTIN who reminds him of his name during the amnesia sequence in 'Picaros'.
jock123
Moderator
#10 · Posted: 12 May 2005 22:57
Pixie, I have to say that reading through the thread again that I too had completely misunderstood the nature of your text, and had assumed that you were the author of most if not all of it; this is down to the fact that you don’t introduce the text at the start, which would have made it a whole lot clearer (“Hi, I found this article and translated it… Here it is:…”). That would have made it a lot clearer; you don’t format it like a quotation or a translation either, so surely you can see how misunderstandings arise

Given that the article is in the first person, and your own text is in the first person, it is quite confusing.

So in spite of you saying “Obviously I had nothing to do with the text”, it isn’t obvious I’m afraid…

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