deus ex tintin

deus ex tintinWhen I was a kid I read every single one of the Tintin books (and all of the Asterix stories, but that's another story)...

And when you're a kid, you just think they're whizz bang adventure stories.

I reread some of them in my 20's, and while they'd perhaps lost a little of their luster, they were still enjoyable...

But rereading them again now in my 30's I'm starting to realise exactly how much deus ex machina is going on.

And not just "a seemingly inextricable problem being suddenly and abruptly solved with the contrived and unexpected intervention of some new character, ability, or object", since sometimes it seemed like the "machina" was working to both get Tintin into as well as out of the problem in question... sometimes within the same page. Some of the notable examples include:
  • Tintin's saved from being shot by a firing squad three times, once by revolution, once by guns jamming and once by invading forces... within the space of two pages
  • A lightning bolt blows him out of a window, out of his jacket, out of ropes tying him up and down the road a few hundred metres, but he's still able to get up and run off
  • He's dropped out of a plane, still in his seat, the parachute fails and he lands in a big wagon full of hay
  • Saved from going over a waterfall by a conveniently placed rock and tree branch
  • Picks up a burning log to free his tied hands without burning himself
  • Discovers conveniently placed tunnel while trapped in a beachside cave that not only saves him from drowning but takes him right into the heart of the bad guy's lair
  • Car taking him to State Prison crashes allowing him to fake being unconscious and escape only to get hit by a car carrying the very person he's on his way to see
But there's also the fact that Tintin seems to be bullet-proof or invulnerable...

For example, within the three books I've read...
  • Tintin involved in car accident: 4
  • Tintin hit by car/near miss: 2
  • Tintin involved in plane crash: 2
  • Tintin rendered unconscious/hit in head: 10
  • Tintin shot at: 10
  • Tintin has knife thrown at him: 2
  • Tintin nearly drowns: 1
  • Tintin attacked by a gorilla while wearing a kilt: 1
And after all these things he's shown in hospital... once...

I'd also like to know where he's getting his money... he's supposed to be a reporter, but during none of the books I've read this time around does he appear to go to an office or submit a story or do any kind of actual "reporter" work... he appears to nominally interview one person (or at least is talking to her while holding what looks like a notebook), but the rest of the time he swans off around the globe at a moment's notice.

Isn't he supposed to be around 20 or something? Is he supposed to be independently wealthy or something? Inheritance from dead parents maybe?

Also, why did he never graduate to grown-up pants?

Having said all of that, I'm still enjoying reading them again...

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