Awesome / Sandokan

The Tigers of Mompracem
  • The three battles with Rosenthal's cruiser include an awesome moment for someone, be it the pirates or the Brits:
    • In the first battle Sandokan quickly realizes that the only small chance to win is to board the enemy vessel, so the Tigers of Mompracem start paddling as they return fire... And then Rosenthal schools Sandokan with the simple expedient of avoiding the boarding thanks to his ship being a steamer. One of Sandokan's prahos is quickly sunk, and the other has to retreat in a nearby river to survive. Note that this is the first time someone defeats Sandokan since he left his ancestral lands.
      • When the pirates try to escape during the night, luck has it that they're spotted, so Sandokan rams his ship in the cruiser's wheel while they board it. The wheel remains intact, and the two dozen remaining pirates are quickly overwhelmed by the 150 sailors of the crew.
      • This battle is also awesome for the author himself: most other Italian novelists of the time, in his place, would have either allowed the boarding immediately or just have the cruiser win through sheer firepower, but Salgari let the Brits use their brains and memorably subverted the readers' expectations.
    • In the second battle, during the retreat from Mompracem, Sandokan finds his retreat barred by the cruiser. This time he succeeds in boarding it without suffering too much, but the crew is still too numerous... And before being captured, Sandokan slays Rosenthal.
    • In the third encounter, thanks to surprise, the Tigers of Mompracem finally capture it in the process of rescuing Marianna, and, as they have no idea how to manouver it, set it on fire.
  • Sandokan, still weakened by combat wounds and armed with a knife, against a tiger. The tiger survived only ten seconds from when Sandokan found her.

The Mistery of the Black Jungle
  • A python ambushes Tremal Naik in the jungle. Tremal Naik's reaction? Cut it into two pieces as he's being squeezed to death and calmly walking away. Becomes even more awesome when the half-serpent meets a Thug and crushes it to death.
  • The first confrontation between Tremal Naik and a group of Thugs, led by no else but Suyodhana: Tremal Naik, to show just how sure he was of his strength and how utterly he despised them, discharged his single shot pistols and carbine in the air and grabbed his carbine by the barrel for use as a club, the most fanatic Thug charged ahead and got his head broken by the carbine's butt, another attacked and died the same way... And it turns that the second was just covering for the others as they prepared their bola-like garrotes, with whom they subdued Tremal Naik with embarrassing ease without even coming close. Then Suyodhana came close and put a knife in the chest of the immobilized Tremal Naik before ordering to throw his body in the jungle for the tigers to eat. Had a rib not deviated the strike and Kammamuri decided to stay in the area to check on Tremal Naik instead of returning home as ordered, Suyodhana would have won then and there effortlessly.
    • Also one for the author, for having the sheer courage of doing something like that back when it was practically obligatory to have the hero be defeated only after a long battle and overwhelmed by sheer numbers.
  • Another for Suyodhana: upon finding out that Tremal Naik's body has disappeared and two of his men have been found dead, he sends his spy Manciadi to check even if he's absolutely sure that Tremal Naik is dead, and when Manciadi manages to report that Tremal Naik is alive and on his way to recover he has him murder Tremal Naik's servant Aghur, lure away Kammamuri and try to kill Tremal Naik when he's still recovering.
  • Tremal Naik is told that if he doesn't give himself up, the Thugs will burn Ada alive. His reaction? Sneak inside their Elaborate Underground Base to where the burning should happen, wait for a drugged Ada to appear, and then sick his tiger on them, fire his guns, and as Kammamuri covers him run to Ada and take her away from under the nose of Suyodhana and fifty Thugs.
    • The Thugs' reply to that move: when Tremal Naik gets lost in the many tunnels of a base he doesn't know, they lock him in a section with a small waterfall, put a fast-acting sleeping drug in the water, and then heat the whole place, getting the heroes, Ada and the tiger (especially the tiger) to drink it. Then they come in.
  • Suyodhana's master plan: instead of killing Tremal Naik he decides to use him to free Nagapatnan, a high-ranking Thug that has just been captured by the British and is being brought to the captain Harry Macpherson, their leading men in the fight against the Thugs, and adds that Tremal Naik will have to kill Macpherson after freeing Nagapatnan, promising that Ada will be his bride if he succeeds. Knowing that Tremal Naik will succeed in freeing Nagapatnan but killing Macpherson is a suicide mission, any expected outcome benefits the Thugs: if Tremal Naik fails and dies, Ada will not have more distractions from her priestly duties; if Tremal Naik succeds but dies, Ada won't have more distractions and the Thugs' worst enemy will be dead, and without any loss to the cult; if Tremal Naik succeeds and comes back, he could have been indoctrinated to the point he joins the cult (this being the best possible outcome for the Thugs); and if he succeeds but doesn't want to join them... Well, Macpherson happens to actually be Harry Corishant, Ada's father, and Tremal Naik has just admitted having killed him.
  • How does Tremal Naik infiltrates Macpherson's group? He has Darma attack him and then pulls the tiger from the tail. Sure, Darma is a very well trained tiger, but the sight is so awesome that Macpherson demands he joins his group, without even suspecting the set-up.
  • Tremal Naik has little problem freein Nagapatnan... But when he comes back to kill Macpherson he discovers not only why Suyodhana wants him dead, but that the Son of the Holy Waters of the Ganges severely underestimated him and his sergeant Baratha: Tremal Naik has already already discovered, and before he knows anything he's fed the youma drink and spills that the Thugs' base is in Rajmangal, and then he's locked in a cell and tied up, with Baratha and some of the men staying back to keep him imprisoned while Macpherson goes to Calcutta to organize the expedition against Rajmangal.
    • When Tremal Naik recovers from his drink and realizes his situation, the narration spends a few lines explaining just how impossible was for him to break free, and then concludes with "Luckily, Tremal Naik had strong muscles and good teeth". He quickly breaks free of the ropes, and through Darma contacts the Thugs for help getting out.
  • In Calcutta Tremal Naik and the Thugs send one of theirs to lure Macpherson in an ambush with the promise of details on Rajmangal. Macpherson falls for it... And, fearing an ambush, sends Bharata with a few bodyguards and has him followed by twenty soldiers.
    • After escaping the counterambush, Tremal Naik and his accomplices escape through a tunnel, putting a water-filled house and various iron doors between themselves and the soldiers. The soldiers casually blow up every barrier, only slowed down by the house (they had to wait for it to drain).
  • In spite of all of Tremal Naik's efforts, Macpherson sets sail for Rajmangal on the old frigate HMS Cornwall. Tremal Naik's reply? He and a few Thugs, outnumbered three to one, seize a gunboat and give chase, before Tremal Naik disguises himself to get on the ship.
  • The liberation of Ada: after discovering Macpherson's real identity and helping him retaking the gunboat, Tremal Naik leads Macpherson and the soldiers to Rajmangal, convinces Suyodhana to give him Ada, and just as the Son of the Holy Waters of the Ganges is about to reveal who Tremal Naik's supposed victim really is Macpherson and the soldier barge in and massacre the Thugs, resist the temptation of chasing them in the tunnels, and walk out waiting for their reinforcements.

The Pirates of Malaysia
  • The first we see of Sandokan: the American merchant ship Young India is caught in a storm near Mompracem, the crew is fighting hard against the storm to keep control of the ship and avoid a shipwreck while the pirates watch from the beach, and, all of sudden, the boatswain notices that Sandokan is watching too, not from under a shelter like the pirates but on top of the island's peak, and wishing them luck from sailor to sailor.
  • In spite of the crew's efforts the Young India wrecks itself on a reef near Mompracem, Yanez and the Tigers of Mompracem, being pirates, attack and quickly kills the crew... And then notice that Kammamuri is fighting off the pirates with a single saber. That's enough for Yanes to order his men to stand down and offer Kammamuri to join them (also telling him that if he refuses then he won't be able to keep the Tigers from killing him).
  • When Kammamuri is brought to Sandokan he discovers just how much of a Magnetic Hero Sandokan is: his original band included a Thug that had apparently reneged Kali to work for him. Considering just how fanatic they are...
  • Kammamuri's tale of what happened after Macpherson's raid at Rajmangal includes three Offscreen Moments of Awesome:
    • Suyodhana's revenge: when told that Macpherson was coming he had called upon enough Thugs that, after the initial debacle, they were able to overwhelm the expedition with sheer numbers and blow up both the Cornwall and the gunboat, and then he had Tremal Naik Driven to Madness with some substance and framed as a Thug. The only reason he survived is that the British, seeing he's mad, had mercy and sentence him to be deported to Norfolk.
      • The Two Tigers also implies that Tremal Naik and Suyodhana fought one-on-one during this battle... And Suyodhana won.
    • As we mentioned, Tremal Naik had gone mad. The British doctors have cured him in a few weeks (not that they realize, as Tremal Naik's tale of what happened at Rajmangal isn't believed and they decide he's still crazy).
    • While all of this and Tremal Naik's attacks on Macpherson's life happened, Kammamuri had feigned having joined the Thugs, and when he discovered that Tremal Naik had been sentenced to deportation but a shipwreck was keeping him on Sarawak he freed Ada (who in the meantime had gone mad from what had happened), killed his minders and set sail with the boat he had prepared in the meantime for when he would escape before embarking on the Young India with the intention of breaking Tremal Naik out.

The King of the Sea
  • Yanez and some of the Tigers of Mompracem are about to be overwhelmed by large numbers of Dayaks boarding their ship. Cue a passing ironclad warship noticing their plight and exterminate the Dayaks.
    • Later in the novel, the same ironclad, that Yanez rechristened King of the Sea, takes on a squadron from the East India Station and wins, saving Sandokan and the surviving Tigers of Mompracem in the process.
  • The King of the Sea's last stand. Outnumbered and outgunned five to one and with reduced mobility due having exhausted her coal supply, she fought to the last, inflicting harsh damage to the enemy ships.
    • At the start of the engagement we have one for the Mad Scientist Paddy O'Brien. Captured by the Tigers earlier in the story, the self-styled Demon of War had stayed with them to use his Death Ray (supposed to ignite explosives from distance, thus blowing up enemy ships' munition magazines) for their cause if they needed him. Given the situation, Yanez dares him to prove it works... And he instantly blows up an enemy ship. He didn't continue with the rest of the fleet only because an enemy grenade killed him and destroyed his device...
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Awesome/Sandokan