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Trivia / Hergé

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  • Adaptation Overdosed: Tintin has been adapted to several media, from film over television series to musicals and so on. "Tintin" has even become a Stock Parody in itself (see also Referenced By: Tintin)
  • Author Existence Failure: Hergé's comic strips died along with their creator. No continuations have ever been allowed, and his estate have been definitively against such a thing ever happening.
  • Creator Backlash: Hergé started quite a few comic strips that he grew tired of after only a few albums. The Furry Fandom comic "Leo and Lea Visit the Lapinos" wasn't really his thing and he axed it off after only one story. He created Jo, Zette and Jocko because his Catholic editors wanted him to make a comic strip centered around a normal Nuclear Family, but Hergé felt limited by the fact that the children couldn't travel anywhere without their parents coming along with them.
    • Hergé even resented "Tintin" in the later years of his life. Most of the art work was done by his assistants and even then his production slowed down increasingly.
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  • Creator Breakdown: During the early 1950s Hergé felt enormous pressure from working for the "Tintin" magazine and his extramarital affair with his secretary. Even though he had confessed the affair to his wife he still felt very guilty about it and couldn't bring himself to divorce her until much, much later. Apart from that he also felt disillusioned by his treatment and that of many of his colleagues who were convicted of being Nazi collaborators. Halfway the "Prisoners of the Sun", "Land of Black Gold" and "Explorers On The Moon" stories he simply dropped everything and took a vacation without informing anybody. He eventually returned and finished them, but remained restless and plagued by nightmares for several years. Eventually a psychiatrist advised him to quit the comic book industry altogether, but Hergé decided to create an entire story based on his recurring nightmares of white snow, "Tintin in Tibet", that eventually rid him off his anxieties. Still he spent the remaining twenty years of his life with traveling and only made three more official "Tintin" stories in the process.
  • Executive Meddling: Hergé occasionally encountered this.
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    • The travel destinations of "Tintin in the Land of the Soviets" and "Tintin in the Congo" were under commission of his Catholic newspaper editor to educate young readers. Hergé never wanted Tintin to visit Russia, nor Congo at all.
    • Under pressure of British publishers Hergé was asked to update the fashions and backgrounds in "The Black Island" because they no longer reflected modern Great Britain. They also asked him to change a large chunk of the plot of "Tintin in the Land of the Black Gold" to remove all references to the British colonials in Palestina and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that was already brewing in 1940, but too political to sustain after World War Two was over. Surprisingly enough Hergé agreed and made the necessary changes.
    • Hergé was also forced to change several Afro-American or black characters in "Tintin in America" and "The Crab With The Golden Claws" into white people under pressure of American publishers.
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    • Several Tintin stories Hergé made during World War Two are very escapist adventure stories in exotic locations and don't reference the war at all. Understandingly so, because the country was occupied and Hergé couldn't afford to anger the Nazis.
    • In "Explorers on the Moon" engineer Frank Wolff commits suicide by leaving the rocket and throw himself into outer space. His Catholic publishers felt this was way too horrible for a pitiful character like Wolff to end his life and forced Hergé to make Wolff add "only a miracle can save me" in his suicide note, so that the possibility that he would survive could be left open to the imagination of the reader. Hergé felt this was nonsense, but did it anyway to end their complaints.
  • Follow the Leader: It's difficult to find European comic strip authors who have never read Tintin in their lives and aren't in one way or another influenced by his work.
  • Missing Episode:
    • Some Quick and Flupke gags were never republished because the boys dressed up like Mussolini and Hitler. Back in the 1930s this was innocent fun, but after World War Two... not as such!
    • "Tintin in the Land of the Soviets" and "Tintin and the Alpha Art" are considered Non Canon and were never colorized or redrawn.
    • The original version of "Tintin In The Land of The Black Gold" from 1940 was never finished and has never been republished again. Halfway a Cliffhanger scene were Tintin is tied up in the desert during a sand storm the Nazis occupied Belgium and Hergé's newspaper "Le Petit Vingtième" was cancelled. When Hergé started working again for "Le Soir" during the occupation he simply started new stories and only took up "Tintin and the Black Gold" until after the war. Yet even then he changed much of the plot.
  • Old Shame: Some old Tintin stories, especially "Tintin in the Land of the Soviets" and "Tintin in Congo" were created under influence of Hergé's magazine publisher, an ultraconservative priest named Norbert Wallez, who wanted Hergé to provide his young readers with educational propaganda warning the youth of the dangers of Soviet communism and praising Belgian colonialism in Congo. Hergé drew these very controversial stories without any documentation at all. He later dismissed these stories as being outdated and naïve.
  • Unintentional Period Piece: Hergé's work covers many events and social changes of the 20th century, including Soviet Russia, the 1920s gangster wars in Chicago, the Chinese-Japanese conflict of the 1930s, the 1930s Gran Chaco War in South America, the Cold War, space travel,...
  • Write Who You Know:
    • Hergé based Tintin's famous quif on his brother Paul.
    • Tintin's dog Snowy ("Milou" in the original language) was named after a girlfriend of Hergé.
    • Hergés twin brothers used to walk around dressed in bowler hats and canes, much like Thompson and Thomson did.
    • Hergé was forced to listen to his aunt singing opera arias in the presence of his parents. Out of this irritation grew the annoying opera singer Bianca Castafiore.
    • Tchang Tchong Yen was based on Hergé's real life Chinese friend Chang Chong Ren.
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