Ampton Reads Asterix: Part Two, or The Golden Years

Well, here we go. The second part in this grand fable. Last time we covered the events leading up to the creation of Asterix and what we can read into the first three issues; this time we’ll be going through the time period before Goscinny’s death, in which Asterix was released regularly, to massive sales... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads Asterix: Part One, or The Beginning

WELL, HELLO THERE One of the first things you will notice if you mention Asterix is that people like it. This is probably not a shocking statement, but aside from the occasional outlier like Tintin and maybe Lucky Luke, Spirou, Gaston Lagaffe, and aside from The Smurfs, which I don’t think most people know is... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads: Tintin and the Picaros

Here we are, folks. We’ve reached the final Tintin book, the last one Hergé finished before he died. Hergé didn’t write this knowing it would be the final Tintin story, and a lot of critics wish it wasn’t the final book. But beat on we must, boats against the current, or something. I’ve discussed over... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads: Flight 714

When I tell people about Flight 714, I call it ‘the one where Tintin gets abducted by aliens’, and I’ve yet to find someone who believes me without knowing about the book prior. Where the previous science fiction books in the Tintin series showcased the glory of modern technology and discussed the ethics and future... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads: Tintin in Tibet

INTRODUCTION Tintin in Tibet is a story about love. Tintin pursues his friend Chang to the ends of the Earth and Haddock pursues Tintin to keep him safe. Behind the scenes, the story was influenced by Hergé’s longing and affection for his lost friend Zhang, by the ending of friendships, and by the dissolution of... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads: The Calculus Affair

For me, The Calculus Affair along with Tintin and the Picaros occupy the somewhat weird positions of being Tintin books I didn’t read until I was pretty much an adult. My grandmother owned most of the books, and the ones she didn’t own were available to loan from the library near the bach we stayed... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads: Explorers on the Moon

The last story ended with the main cast getting launched into space in a nuclear rocket and being knocked unconscious by the force of exiting the atmosphere. Hergé needed to work hard in order to make the second half of the story land what the first half had started. And he did it, the absolute... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads: Destination Moon

For the third and final two-part story Hergé would write for the Tintin series, he was thinking big. He was going to take Tintin somewhere where no one had ever been, which is the ultimate adventure story. He was launching his boy reporter into space. This was no small feat. Yuri Gargarin would not complete... Continue Reading →

Ampton Reads: Land of Black Gold

Land of Black Gold is the Tintin book with the most chaotic publishing history, hands-down. The first version began publication right after King Ottokar's Sceptre, during the period in which Tintin was flying solo and was throwing himself right into world politics, and the second version wasn't started until Hergé had gone through the war... Continue Reading →

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