Thursday, December 22, 2011

Tintin the Intrepid

All three of our sons were born in Europe, the two older sons starting school in a bilingual classroom (English/French). We spoke English in the home so the boys would be able to maintain it as their mother tongue, but we also began collecting French books and reading them to the boys from time to time. One of the earlier titles in our collection was Le Secret de la Licorne (The Secret of the Unicorn), one of the adventures of the intrepid hero Tintin
Tintin was the brainchild of Belgian artist Georges Rémi under the name HergéRémi began writing the Tintin stories in 1930's Belgium, and the stories of the boy hero, reporter and world traveler quickly captured the imagination of young people all over the Francophone world. One of my favorite talk show hosts, Tom Ashbrook of NPR's "On Point," interviewed his own French father-in-law on his memories of reading Tintin as a young boy in the midst of the Nazi occupation of Paris.
Director Steven Spielberg has now brought Tintin to the big screen -- none too soon, as the popular European comic series has been translated into more than 50 languages and sold more than 200 millions copies worldwide. I haven't seen the movie yet (The Adventures of Tintin) -- but regardless of how many thumbs up the movie gets, it will bring back many fond memories of families the world over -- including mine.

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