Played by Richard Pearce (BBC Radio Series 1 and 2), Jean-Pierre Talbot (''Tintin and the Golden Fleece", "Tintin and the Blue Oranges"), Colin O'Meara (90's animated series), Jamie Bell (Spielberg/Jackson film)
The protagonist of the series, a young and adventurous reporter who seems to have a knack for getting himself involved in all sorts of amazing, fantastical adventures.
The Ace: Hergé admitted Tintin was an idealized version of himself (even though Haddock was his favorite character).
Amateur Sleuth: Tintin ends up doing Thomson and Thompson's jobs for them more often than not.
A-Team Firing: Tintin is a crack shot when aiming at things without a pulse. Otherwise...
Beware the Nice Ones: Tintin is as easy going and sweet as they come but he can knock down men twice his size with a single well placed punch.
Born Lucky: Ooooh boy. He tends to get himself out of trouble through very unlikely circumstances.
British Accents: Has one in the English version of the movie and in the radio series.
Canadian Accents: The English dub of the cartoon, however, gave him one of these.
Characterization Marches On: In his first two books, he was originally something of a rude, inconsiderate troublemaker who didn't mind getting into fights.
Cloudcuckoolander's Minder: It's frightening to imagine what sort of (drunken) trouble Captain Haddock would get into if Tintin wasn't there to keep an eye on him.
Distressed Dude: He ends up in trouble, knocked unconscious and tied up constantly.
Determinator: In Tintin Tintin In Tibet, as well as in the Spielberg/Jackson film. He inspires Haddock not to give up, which in turn inspires Haddock to encourage Tintin to do the same the one time he does almost give up.
Forgiveness: He's quick to give people a second chance, and felt obligated to Save the Villain several times over the course of the series.
Although by that point he had already struck up the extremely signficant friendship with Chang and the Thom(p)sons considered themselves Tintin's friends, as did a number of persons whom Tintin had met on his travels abroad and would meet again, notably Oliveira da Figueira, Ridgewell, and Bianca Castafiore.
Guile Hero: Throughout the course of the series, he would lie to the bad guys, disguise himself, trick the bad guys, fool the bad guys etc... A typical scene in an adventure could have him pointing behind a villain and yelling "Look out!" after they make him crash his car, and then he would steal their car while they were distracted.
He would also use whisky and reverse psychology to get the Captain to cooperate.
Heroes Love Dogs: Snowy is Tintin's longest companion and trying to hurt Snowy is one of very few ways to get Tintin genuinely mad.
Intrepid Reporter: Subverted as his adventures only have a very tenuous connection to his job if at all. It's implied that he writes about his adventures afterwards and that's what we're reading in the comics.
Master of Disguise: Tintin has pulled off quick disguises quite often to sneak into enemy ranks or avoid capture.
Only Sane Man: Between the hot-headed Captain, hearing impaired Professor and the bumbling Detectives, Tintin has his hands full.
Pintsized Powerhouse: He's slighter and younger than many of the people he encounters... but he's capable of taking on two gorilla-henchmen at the same time!
The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: For someone who is supposedly a reporter, he doesn't get to do a lot of story writing. Most of the places he visits are because of his job, though.
Chalk it up to Literary Agent Hypothesis. The stories about his adventures are his reports, or at least are based on them; when they originally appeared in newspapers, Herge occasionally wrote fake articles that had Tintin interviewing some of the other characters on the finer details of what was going on — an opportunity for Herge to show his research.
Technical Pacifist: While he is willing to fight, he goes to great lengths to avoid conflict.
Vague Age: He's old enough to enter a pub and drink a beer (The Black Island) and old enough to live alone with his dog in his own apartment. However, he is still referred to as a "young boy", and a "puppy." Hergé stated that when he first thought about Tintin, the character was 14 or 15 years old, but in an interview he stated: "but now, let's say that he is 17."
Played by Andrew Sachs (BBC Radio Series 1 and 2), Susan Roman (90's animated series)
Tintin's faithful pet dog, a loyal and trusted companion who is always by Tintin's side.
Animal Talk: Only in the original comics and in the radio adaptations.
Determinator: If Tintin gets into trouble, nothing can stop him from helping his master. The best example is the way Snowy tracks Tintin to Marlinspike after the Bird brothers kidnap him in Secret of the Unicorn. In the Spielberg/Jackson film, he jumps onto a truck in the middle of a busy intersection, leaps through a herd of cows, and sneaks onto a ship to find him.
Played by Andy Serkis (Spielberg/Jackson film), Leo McKern (BBC Radio Series 1), Lionel Jeffries (BBC Radio Series 2), David Fox (90's animated series)
A blustering and fierce-tempered seaman, Captain Haddock was originally the captain of a trading vessel called the Kariboujan, where his malevolent First Mate Allan kept him pliant in a whiskey-induced alcoholic stupor, allowing him to secretly use the ship as part of an opium-smuggling ring. With Tintin's help, the good captain escaped and eventually aided in foiling the smuggling ring, but his ship was lost forever. Settling down on land, he returned to aid Tintin in pursuit of a treasure secreted by his ancestor, Sir Francis Haddock, after which he became wealthy in his own right and a constant companion in Tintin's adventures.
Agent Scully: Always dismisses the supernatural despite having seen the impossible with his own eyes several times.
In Tintin in Tibet, he refuses to acknowledge the existence of the Yeti.
Happens again in Flight 714 when he states his disbelief in both aliens and hypnosis.
And he refuses to believe in fortune telling in "The Castafiore Emerald". Even though he saw a pretty convincing case of it in "The Seven Crystal Balls."
Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: Haddock, we're looking right at you. Literally. You're the picture on the trope page. Dry, he's a force to be reckoned with. Let him swallow a drop of liquor, though, and he's capable of starting a fire in a wooden lifeboat. And breaking the oars for fuel. And when he realizes what he's done, he'll try to put out the fire... With whiskey. ker-WHOOMP
Badass Family: His ancestor Francis Haddock was also quite a badass.
The Berserker: He once charged, swinging his rifle at a flank of desert bandits when they shot his booze.
Boisterous Bruiser: He's the most boisterous, outgoing and aggressive member of the "Tintin Trio"; Tintin prefers to talk or outwit adversaries, Professor Calculus is usually too oblivious to realize he's in danger, but Haddock is the first to take a swing at someone.
At the end of the Spielberg/Jackson film, he gets so excited over finding what Sir Francis Haddock salvaged of the treasure that he actually mixes up his own catchphrase!
Characterization Marches On: When first introduced he was a weak and pathetic alcoholic, but after he dried out he became the salty-mouthed, assertive, somewhat bullheaded sea dog everyone knows him as.
The Chew Toy: Lampshades this himself in Destination Moon: when Calculus accidentally catapults a bit of plaster from his ear-trumpet into Mr. Baxter's face, Haddock exclaims delightedly: "Blistering barnacles! I thought that sort of thing only happened to me!"
Father Neptune: A subversion. As soon as Haddock settles down in Marlinspike Hall, he finds he much prefers solid ground under his feet over a seafaring life — although he remains a very capable navigator when his services are called for.
Good Is Not Nice: In contrast to Tintin, who sometimes has to convince Haddock to be more forgiving with people who cross him.
It's stated by Tintin in Tintin in Tibet, after Haddock angrily tells Tintin he'll follow him in his wild goose chase all over the Himalaya so they can hypothetically find an old friend who would have had to survive a plane crash, the freezing cold and starvation before to be found:
Tharkey: That's a great friend you have here.
Tintin: The best.
Large Ham: Ah yes, there's a reason why the people who made the BBC radio adaptations decided to cast Leo McKern.
Unusual Euphemism: The author originally wanted Captain Haddock to, well, swear like a sailor, but he had to keep the comic family friendly. He compromised by using this strategy, which ended up becoming Captain Haddock's signature character trait.
Played by Stephen Moore (BBC Radio Series), Wayne Robson (90's animated series)
Although Tintin had encountered eccentric professors and scientists before, when he crossed paths with Professor Cuthbert Calculus, he found his most persistent ally. Mild-mannered and intelligent, but absent-minded, stubbornly in denial about his troubles hearing and generally oblivious, Professor Calculus was an important part of the hunt for Sir Francis Haddock's treasure; in return for his having purchased Captain Haddock's ancestral home of Marlinspike Hall as a gift to the Captain for allowing the trial of his anti-shark submarine, Haddock allows Professor Calculus to live and work on the estate.
Acting the goat, am I?!
Absent-Minded Professor: Mostly due to his poor hearing but see the conclusion of "The Calculus Affair" for a non-hearing example.
Berserk Button: For all his alleged gentleness, he has a lot of buttons and a Hair-Trigger Temper, albeit a fairly mild one. You don't want to mention his family members in inappropriate situations (including ones he doesn't have). You'll want to avoid knocking off his hat, as well. And for the love of God, never tell him he's "acting the goat". Of course, there's always the chance he'll mishear you, for better or worse.
Breakout Character: He was the last in a fairly long line of kooky scientists and eccentric professors when he was introduced, but after he joined the cast, he became a permanent member of the team, whereas his counterparts were all one-shot appearances.
Bungling Inventor: Much more competent than many other examples and his inventions have helped immensly but when they fail, it's spectacular.
Bunny-Ears Lawyer: He may be eccentric and severely hearing impaired, but nobody doubts his genius.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: When his Berserk Button is pressed, NO ONE can stand in his way. He becomes hyper competent, is able to scare off Haddock and even appears to have gained super strength and lifts a man twice his size.
Cloudcuckoolander: Due to his curiously selective hearing impairment rather than his intelligence.
Distressed Dude: Calculus getting kidnapped is the main story drive of the Seven Crystal Balls/Prisoners of the Sun storyline and The Calculus Affair.
A Day in the Limelight: The Calculus Affair, as well as the Moon albums which turn him into a competent character.
The Fool: He is often in the middle of dire straits without having any idea what's going on
Hidden Depths: As mentioned above, Destination Moon and The Calculus Affair proved that the good professor is very down-to-earth indeed whenever the world is threatened. He has even less concern for his personal safety in these situations.
He also shows an unexpected romantic streak vis-à-vis the Milanese Nightingale in The Castafiore Emerald, thus becoming the only major character in the series to display such tendencies.
I Know Savate: In Flight 714. But he's admittedly gotten rather rusty since his lycee days.
Kidnapped Scientist: In the Calculus Affair. Also technically in Prisoners of the Sun, though his kidnapping there isn't because of him being a scientist.
Omnidisciplinary Scientist: Seems to specialize in physics but has done remarkable things even outside that field, such as design a miniature submarine (engineering), breed a special strand of white rose (botany) and create a pill capable of making those who take it find the taste of alcohol repulsive (pharmacology).
Throwing Off the Disability: In Destination Moon, he makes himself a hearing aid so that he will be able to hear the radio transmissions perfectly. The device is never seen again in any of the subsequent books, though given his absent-mindedness, it could be argued that he simply forgot about it at some point.
Cloudcuckoolanders: After a misunderstanding involving an x-ray machine, they become convinced that there is a skeleton wandering around the Centre. They even try to arrest a skeleton in a doctor's office.
Clueless Detectives: Tintin does most of the sleuthing and the two are mostly there to officially take the villains in.
Determinators: While their competence is questionable at best later on, they won't let that slow them down. At one point (Prisoners of the Sun) they were canvassing the Earth trying to track down Tintin and Co.
Wrong Genre Savvy: Considering where Tintin's adventures take him, it wasn't that unreasonable to search the places that they did.
The Dividual (twindividual): They are practically one person in two clumsy bodies.
Early-Bird Cameo: Hergé retroactively added Thomson and Thompson to a single panel when he redrew Tintin in the Congo.
Evil Counterpart: In the BBC radio adaptation of The Calculus Affair, the Bordurian guards asigned to escort Tintin and Haddock are essentially evil versions of the Thompsons, right down to mannerisms, ineptitude, and the voice actor.
Face Death with Dignity: Say what you will about their intelligence, but they definitely don't lack courage. When they're facing the firing squad in Tintin and the Picaros, they refuse to be blindfolded and are willing to stare death in the face.
Flanderization: Their first appearances showed them to be clumsy, comedic, but also quite capable, even busting Tintin out of prison at one point. Later depictions made them generally incompetent.
Heel-Face Turn: In earlier volumes they are often trying to catch Tintin due to a misunderstanding or Tintin being framed.
Identical Twin ID Tag: Their mustaches look slightly different: Thomson's curls in while Thompson's flares out.
Smart Ball: Invoked on a few rare occasions when it's necessary to advance the plot. They help Tintin out a few times in The Cigars of the Pharaoh, and manage to catch the pickpocket in The Secret Of the Unicorn...eventually, at least.
Talking to Himself: Both men are played by the same actor (Charles Kay) in the BBC radio adaptations.
Ultimate Job Security: They stay on the force and are consistently given major cases no matter how incompetent they really are.
Write Who You Know: They were based on Hergé's father and uncle, who were identical twins and also endeavored to dress identically — right down to the bowler hats.
A robust and well-known opera singer who is a friend of Tintin's. She has something of an affection for Captain Haddock, who personally finds her singing awful but is too polite to offend her, whereas Professor Calculus is infatuated with her.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: To an extent. She doesn't seem to fear authority figures, which may be why she was so successful at getting information out of Col. Sponsz (The Calculus Affair) and taking just 6 panels to shut down her own trial in San Theodoros (Tintin And The Picaros).
Dreadful Singer: Tintin, Haddock and Snowy certainly think so, though the fact that she's a world famous Opera diva may indicate that this is subject to opinion in-universe.
Fat Girl: A positive example. Despite her hilariously over-the-top antics, she is mostly a well-meaning ally to the main characters.
Kavorka Woman: She may be an extremely Rare Female Example of the trope. Despite neither being much of a looker nor very compelling company, she has quite a few male characters clearly enchanted, including Calculus and Colonel Sponsz. Granted, Calculus's reaction to General Alcazar's wife Peggy suggests he just may have a very unique taste in women.
Malaproper: Gets a lot of peoples' names wrong, with the apparent exception of Tintin and important members of government. Especially noticeable with Captain Haddock in The Castafiore Emerald, although he did stumble a bit when he first introduced himself in The Calculus Affair.
Never a Self-Made Woman: Notably averted. She's single, unrelated to the main characters and has done well for herself despite being the sole female character of note in a series that takes place in a time where it was difficult for unmarried women to make their own living, let alone become world-famous singers.
Gold Digger - Though technically non canonical, in an original draft of Tintin and The Picaros he explains that he married his wife because she is very wealthy and connections to an arms dealership.
Hair-Trigger Temper: Both played straight and subverted in The Broken Ear. When Alcazar drafts Tintin into his revolutionary army and makes him a colonel, his aide-de-camp Colonel Diaz suggests that Tintin should be a corporal instead, since Alcazar's army already has 3,487 colonels and only 49 corporals. Alcazar is so furious at this suggestion that he immediately demotes Colonel Diaz to the rank of corporal and appoints Tintin as his new aide-de-camp.
Tintin himself experiences the subversion when Alcazar makes Tintin play a game of chess with him. When Tintin wins the game, an outraged Alcazar gets up, pulls out his gun and shoots at Tintin, very narrowly missing him. Tintin is terrified, and Alcazar starts laughing, explaining that the gun was loaded with blanks and he was just playing a joke.
House Husband- He can lead a guerilla war campaign and wash the dishes...in a pink apron.
Knife-Throwing Act: While deposed from power Alcazar perfored such an act in Tintin's country to get by.
Token Evil Teammate: It's implied that he isn't much better than General Tapioca. In Tintin and the Picaros, Tintin and his friends are really only helping the General partly because of Tintin's past friendship with him, and-more importantly-so they can rescue the Thompsons and Madame Castafiore from being executed.
In The Red Sea Sharks, he was involved in some fishy smuggling business.
Emir Ben Kalish Ezab and Abdullah
Mohammed Ben Kalish Ezab and Abdullah
Beware the Nice Ones: He usually comes off meek and is generally not very scary. However in the Land Of the Black Gold, Muller actually attempted suicide because he believed the only alternative would be to be handed over to the Emir for his crimes, suggesting the Emir is far more authoritative when the situation warrants.
Red Herring: His suspicious behaviour related to his gambling habits, as well as the soles of his shoes matching the footprints outside Castafiore's window, make him a suspect for the diamond thefts in The Castafiore Emerald.
Satellite Character: Slightly less so than Irma, but outside of The Castafiore Emerald, he has no character beyond being Castafiore's pianist.
Battle Butler: Despite being treated like dirt by Bianca Castafiore, she possesses an unshakeable loyalty to her...and will beat the stuffing out of anyone who dares suggest otherwise.
Small Role, Big Impact: He only actually appears in two stories (The Blue Lotus and Tintin in Tibet) and is mentioned in a few others, but in the latter, it is obvious that he is one of the people Tintin cares for the most.
Tagalong Kid: After Tintin saved him from drowning Chang accompanied him on his journey.
Punny Name: In the original French, his name sounds like "zut", making Haddock think he's being difficult when he's actually introducing himself. In the English translation, Haddock misunderstands the name as a rude command to "scoot".
Remember the New Guy: He's not an example in the comics, but the animated series changes the dialogue in his first meeting with Tintin and Haddock for no apparent reason so that Tintin already somehow knows his name.
Honest John's Dealership: Played with. He's perfectly honest and a genuine friend to Tintin, but you really don't want to stay too long with him because he'll sell you enough useless items to fill a small truck. He's just that good at his job.
The Storyteller: He's able to conjure from nowhere a detailed, incredibly dramatic backstory for Tintin's disguise in Land of Black Gold, which keeps Müller's men engrossed while Tintin infiltrates the study.
Amusing Injuries: Only Captain Haddock usually suffered the amount of physical punishment Rastapopulous takes in Flight 714, up to and including being hit by a stray grenade.
Bad Boss: In Flight 714, under the influence of Truth Serum, he reveals that he was going to have all his henchmen (save for Allan) killed after he would complete his evil plan.
Big Bad: The most prominent of such in the series.
Breakout Villain: He is not in a whole lot of albums and only briefly in most of them, but he made enough of an impression to be universally considered Tintin's Big Bad.
Chekhov's Gunman: A man looking very similar to Rastapopoulos appears in Tintin in America, a book before his actual introduction, sitting next to Tintin at a banquet. It is unclear whether Hergé actually meant this character to be Rastapopoulos, but it's worth noting that he's sitting next to the actress Mary Pikefort, which makes sense given his job as a movie producer, and that in the English translation of Cigars of the Pharaoh, Tintin states that he has met Rastapopoulos before* The Doylist explanation for this is that Cigars of the Pharaoh was only published in English after some other stories featuring Rastapopoulos, but it makes for a good Watsonian explanation.
Evil All Along: He is introduced in Cigars of the Pharaoh as a short-tempered but benign movie producer, then revealed in The Blue Lotus to have been the Big Bad all along. Surprising, eh?
Villain Decay: He started out as a drug and arms smuggler and eventually moved on to slave trading. However, by the time he appears in Flight 714 he's reduced to trying to steal Lazlo Carriedas's fortune after he was bankrupted by Tintin foiling his schemes. His ineffectiveness is shown by his inability to even squash a spider, and by his attire-a gaudy pink shirt and jeans, with matching cowboy boots and hat. Herge himself Lampshaded the decay, realizing that after he drew Rastapopulous in that silly outfit, he couldn't take poor Roberto seriously as a villain ever again.
Bond Villain Stupidity: All Tintin villains like to spend quality time with the ol' Villain Ball, but it is Allan who really loves this trope. In all albums he's in, he has Tintin at his mercy at some point, and decides to just leave him alone for him to escape.
The Dragon: First to Omar Ben Salaad, then to Rastapopoulos. Is this to Sakharine in the movie.
Dragon-in-Chief: He is by far a more prominent villain than his boss in The Crab with the Golden Claws, and Tintin's final struggle is against him. He is less proactive when he becomes Rastapopoulos's lackey.
One Steve Limit: In the original French, his name is Allan Thompson. To avoid obvious confusion, the English translation left out his last name entirely.
Retcon: He was Ret Conned into being the villain that threw Tintin overboard in a newer edition of Cigars of the Pharaoh, even though canonically this album takes place before The Crab with the Golden Claws, Allan's introduction.
Spared by the Adaptation: The film, specifically. In the original album The Crab with the Golden Claws, Tintin's struggle to capture Allan forms the climax of the story, and he succeeds (even though Allan must escape or be released by the time of The Red Sea Sharks). But in Spielberg's film, Allan is dispatched when Captain Haddock knocks him down from a height onto a moving truck, carting him out of the fray. It's reasonable to suppose he must have been brought to justice later, once Tintin and Haddock were able to give a full description to the local police — but this may otherwise have been a deliberate scriptwriting tactic, keeping Allan at large to make his return more plausible if a sequel introduces Rastapopoulous.
The Chessmaster: In his second appearance, when he lures Tintin to San Theodoros in order to have him killed and prepares a perfect coverup.
Sugar and Ice Personality: His subordinates get his ice side, Castafiore and (presumably) his personal friends see his sugar side.
Surrounded by Idiots: The Colonel himself is a competent enough official, but his Bordurian subordinates are incompetent buffoons. In The Calculus Affair, Tintin and Haddock give some of Sponsz's agents the slip in heavy traffic, and get rid of others by getting them drunk and locking them in their hotel rooms.
Fascist, but Inefficient: His security is so lax that Alcazar and the Picaros are able to seize power by sneaking into his office and forcing him at gunpoint to read a declaration that he's stepping down and handing power over to Alcazar, all without firing a shot.
Fate Worse than Death: He considers his humiliating banishment to be this; he'd much rather been executed.
Not So Different: The last page of Tintin and the Picaros implies that there is little difference between him and General Alcazar
Villainous Breakdown: He bursts into tears when he realizes that Alcazar is going to spare his life at Tintin's insistence. Apparently it's a San Theodoros tradition for the new dictator to put his predecessor in front of a firing squad, if he can catch him.
Foreshadowing: His briefly panicking at the end of Destination Moon ultimately amounts to this.
Guile Hero: A very minor case, but he improvised a lie to get past the Thompsons and used his technological expertise to make his Heroic Sacrifice without being interrupted or further endangering the other crew members.
Heroic Sacrifice: Exits the rocket, so the others will have enough oxygen to get back to Earth.
My God, What Have I Done?: His words right before the rocket launch, where he regrets getting into this dangerous ordeal, which makes sense as the other characters were also having second thoughts about going into space. Afterwards, it turns out the danger he was referring to was actually his espionage.
Mr. Exposition: Does this once in each of the moon books, the second instance being very different from the first.
Pride: Not explicitly stated, but if he'd just told his employers about his gambling debts and about the man who approached him, he could have avoided all his problems; apparently he was too ashamed to do this.
Redemption Equals Death: Technically, Herge left a loophole where he might have survived, but this trope otherwise fits. However, this loophole only exists in Wolff's farewell note in the collected album version: in the original magazine-published version (later changed under pressure from Catholic organizations) Wolff's last note makes it absolutely clear he has no hope of survival.
Straight Man: To Haddock, Thompson and Thomson and especially Calculus in Destination Moon. Without him, you could easily forget the inherent seriousness of sending people to the freaking Moon amongst all the antics our heroes pull.
No Celebrities Were Harmed: Visually based on French aircraft industrialist Marcel Dassault, whose looks were such that according to one anecdote a French photo journalist accidentally wanted to include a photograph of him in a feature on homeless people living in the streets of Paris.
Perpetual Frowner: Known in-universe as "the man who never laughs", though Calculus's antics do manage to get several laughing fits out of him (for the first time in many years, apparently).
Enemy Mine: After Rastapopoulos reveals (under the truth serum) that he was planning to murder Krollspell once he no longer needed the doctor's expertise, Tintin rightly assesses that Krollspell isn't too enthusiastic about the whole villain gig anymore. He goes on to help the heroes at a couple of points by keeping watch over the wayward Carreidas.
Epic Fail: His truth serum proves to be completely and utterly worthless. Frankly, Rastapopulous would have been better off injecting Carreidas with Rajaijah Juice.
Karma Houdini: Unlike the other villains in Flight 714, he is let off scot free by the aliens, albeit with his memory of all recent events wiped.
Satellite Character: To Rastapopulos, and to Carreidas once he's appointed caregiver to the latter.