DVDs in Review - #11: The Complete Adventures of Tintin

Category: By Rev/Views

Tintin and Asterix were two comics that I grew up with. I didn't really own many of the books myself but I did read them by borrowing them from the library. So when I saw the complete set in Zavvi for £16 (which works out as £14.40 for me) I couldn't resist getting it and watching the tv series because I missed most those when they were being broadcast due to a combination of being out or being denied early morning television.


The Adventures of Tintin is based on the comic book series Herge's Adventures of Tintin and is the second animated version of this show; for the sake of the few people who've been in a cave the last 80 odd years and don't know anything about it I'll briefly summarise.

Tintin is a young reporter (who spends less and less time reporting about his adventures) who's natural curiosity and lack of fear lands him in trouble repeatedly. Set in a pseudo realistic version of the world (1930s onwards) Tintin includes some mystical elements along with science. Accompanying Tintin on his adventures are a selection of recurring characters and eventual companions, specifically the Thompson Twins, Captain Haddock and Professor Calculus.

The animated show follows every book from Tintin in America to Tintin and the Picaros. Which is 21 out of the 24 books released and basically all of the good stories. But for myself personally the series only becomes entertaining when Captain Haddock joins the cast in the 7th adventure. It's his combination of drinking, uttering oaths, comical clumsiness and general 'hard man with a heart of gold' that I enjoy most of all.

One thing to note about the series is most of the adventures have sections edited out to resolve time issues. But this does mean that there is the odd plot element not explained in the show. For the most part it's not noticable, but there's a pretty major blunder in 'Tintin and the Shooting Star' where the exploding mushrooms are almost entirely forgotten about, but they play a key part in the final scenes and as such appear without any previous explaination... Also much of Haddock's obsession with whisky has been removed and as such many comical scenes are lost.

On the other hand the animation is faithful to the style of the comics and there is actually some 3D animation in Destination Moon & Explorers on the Moon. Which is very impressive for 1989.

On the whole it's a great package and enjoyed it immensely. But the books are still better.


Now, while the complete bundle is quite nice looking and it uses slimline DVD cases there is a slight question where the number of DVDs is concerned. Most of the DVDs have 2 adventures on them, but they could easily hold between 3 and 5 per disc, in fact the final DVD does indeed have 3 adventures on it. So you have 10 DVDs doing the job of 5, that's pretty wasteful and means the collection takes up double the amount it should have.

This is a criminal act in my opinion and as such I'm deducting marks from the score.


Blue blistering barnacles, there's absolutely none what so ever. Not a sniff of an extra, nor a drop of whisky. For shame!

Well, there is one thing you can do in lew of extras, you can play "Where's Herge" as he makes a lot of animated cameos in this series. As such I'll give the show a single point.


Zavvi seems to have gone back up in price since I bought this so I'll work from the cheapest I've found online with Sendit. That's £15.89 with a run time of 1080 mins. Which works out as a ridiculouly low 1.5p per min. I think the collection has redeemed itself here. Bonus point for being the cheapest so far, which means it's breaking the 10 mark.


Show: 8/10
Packaging: 4/10
Extras: 1/10
Price: 11/10
Final score: 60%

This set is let down by it's lack of extras and it's poor choice in DVD packaging. It's best to try and get the HMV 5 DVDs version instead of purchasing this one. But I haven't seen it outside of eBay.

As an additional side note, Steven Moffat has written Spielberg's film adapataion which will be released in 2009. That's an awesome writer and talented director so hopefully it will be a classic.

Available from Sendit for £15.89
From Play.com for £16.99


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