Tintin cover satirising Hitler up for auction

PARIS • The cover of a Tintin story that satirised Adolf Hitler's German expansionism could go for more than €350,000 (S$548,000) when it comes up for auction in Paris tomorrow.

In King Ottakar's Sceptre, the boy detective's creator Herge was taking a dig at the Nazi leader after his annexation of Austria in 1938. Herge is the pseudonym of Belgian cartoonist Georges Remi.

Tintin and his faithful hound Snowy find themselves trying to foil a plot by spies to overthrow the king of the fictional Balkan land of Syldavia.

The story was first published in Le Petit Vingtieme (The Little Twentieth), the children's supplement of Belgian newspaper Le Vingtieme Siecle (The Twentieth Century).

The cover shows Tintin tripping as he gets out of the plane in Prague and having to grab his new friend Professor Alembick's beard to right himself.

The drawing is part of a major sale of classic cartoon images at Artcurial auction house in the French capital, which was postponed in March because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Also going under the hammer is a painting of Asterix and Obelix by their creator Albert Uderzo for a 1966 colouring book, which is expected to sell for up to €25,000.

Uderzo died at 92 in March.

However, the biggest bids are expected to go to a 1954 ink drawing called Le Pirogue (The Dugout Canoe) of the Marsupilami, the fictional South American animal invented by legendary Belgian artist Andre Franquin.

It has an estimated price of between €350,000 and €450,000.

Franquin was one of the most influential post-war comic book artists of the French-speaking world and Marsupilami often appeared alongside the characters Spirou & Fantasio, which he drew from 1949 to 1969.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 26, 2020, with the headline 'Tintin cover satirising Hitler up for auction'. Print Edition | Subscribe