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Adventures of Tintin: Season One, The (DVD Review)

19 Nov, 2011 By: Ashley Ratcliff

Street 11/22/11
Shout! Factory
$19.93 two-DVD set
Not rated.

Fans of “The Adventures of Tintin” animated series will love this DVD presentation of the 1991 show. This first-season set includes 13 original episodes — featuring the curious, baby-faced reporter, Tintin, and his trusty pooch, Snowy — which will be a great precursor to the big-screen version, hitting theaters Dec. 21.

It seems that danger and adventure just find Tintin, who, though identified as a reporter, never seems to turn in any articles, or do journalist things like take notes, conduct interviews or speak with an editor. However, I must say, his investigative skills are impeccable.

Joining Tintin on his journeys are the incompetent twin detectives Thomson and Thompson, and Captain Archibald Haddock, the whisky-swigging seafarer with an uncanny gift for delivering punchy insults. When he learns that a newspaper has printed falsehoods in the “Red Rackham’s Treasure” episode, he blurts out, “parasitic snoops, headline hedonists, word-hungry mongers” without pausing for air.

Also amusing are the characters’ catchphrases: Tintin’s “great snakes!” and Haddock’s “blue blistering barnacles,” “ten thousand thundering typhoons” and the like.

Because my childhood memories of the series are vague, it’s nice to get brought back up to speed on the much-beloved cartoon — which, in watching now, sometimes seems too intense for such a young audience, given the harrowing scenarios Tintin encounters (a drug-smuggling operation, a binge-drinking friend, chloroform exposure, countless assassination attempts). This all will make for a great movie, of course.

Upon seeing the trailers, I have to admit, I’m low-key excited to see Hergé’s storybook characters coming to life in 3D via performance-capture technology. It appears that the Tintin film is based on the episodes “The Crab With the Golden Claws” and “The Secret of the Unicorn” (both broken into two-part shows), and “Red Rackham’s Treasure,” which appear on the DVD’s first disc.

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