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Tintin May Have Been Asexual Girl, French Philosopher Vincent Cespedes Claims

'An androgynous and probably asexual redhead with blue eyes.'

22/09/2017 11:19 BST | Updated 22/09/2017 11:24 BST

A French philosopher has caused a stir by claiming that cartoon favourite Tintin may actually be an asexual girl, and taunted fans by saying the world has fallen for a “huge” farce. 

Vincent Cespedes believes the creator of the boy reporter, Hergé, would be “hooting with laughter” that 30 years after his death “the whole world still believes that his ‘tomboy’ is well and truly a real boy”.

Fans of the character, created by the Belgian in 1929, have long wondered why Tintin isn’t interested in girls, something 44-year-old Cespedes has claimed is obvious. 

“For his creator, Tintin was always a girl. An androgynous and probably asexual redhead with blue eyes,” Cespedes wrote in a post on Facebook earlier this week

Hergé used to call his hero a tomboy with “a few friends who were in on the joke,” he said.

Cespedes isn’t the first philosopher to raise this point, in 1985, Régis Debray, claimed that Hergé hid his femininity behind Tintin.

Cespedes, who also dabbles in writing, painting and composing, claimed he had cracked the mystery over the globe-trotting character whose 24 adventures have sold more than 200 million copies. Numerous films have also been made about his escapades, most recently in 2011. 

Cespedes: “This problem of gender has existed for a long time with Tintin. I have merely jumped a step and forced everyone to take a position.”

Of 350 characters in the Tintin series, only eight are identifiable as women.

Foc Kan via Getty Images
Philospher Vincent Cespedes 

Further suspicion around Tintin’s sexual orientation has been sparked by his gentle manner and living arrangements - he resides with a sailor by the name of Captain Haddock. 

Cespedes added: “Whenever she can, she puts on a skirt or a dress.”

Examples of this include, he wrote, in The Black Island, set in Scotland, where Tintin puts on a kilt despite no one else doing so. In Tintin and the Picaros, Haddock makes a squad of soldiers dress up as women at a South American street carnival. Another clue, Cespedes opined, is the cover of The Castafiore Emerald, in which Tintin holds a finger over his mouth, signalling a secret. Bianca Castafiore, the opera singer, is in fact a castrato, the philosopher added.

Cespedes: “Disguised as a boy, supposedly a journalist, she travels through the misogyny of cultures, the prudery of the times.”

Tintin fans have greeted Cespedes’ claims with indifference, though some have labelled his analysis, “bullshit”. 

The philosopher told Le Huffpost, “I’m ready to debate.”

“I look forward to knowing what arguments can be put forward to prove that this is false because I am convinced: Tintin is a girl.”

Vincent Cespedes Facebook post on Tintin reads: 

For His Creator, tintin was always a young girl. A redheaded redhead with blue eyes, and probably asexuelle. Well, all right, this doesn’t really show up in the albums: her eyes don’t have colors or eyelashes, she doesn’t have breasts and wears male outfits. But Hergé still poufferait, noting that 30 years after his death and 80 years after the first appearance of tintin in the countries of the Soviets, the whole world continues to believe that his “missed boy” - as he called him His rare friends, as a result of the hoax, is indeed an authentic boy. So let’s do a spell to this queer farce before the hour, so huge that the most férus of the tintinophile, from the philosopher Jean-Luc Marion to filmmaker Steven Spielberg, have not even detected it. It is that over time, with the disappearance of’s last accomplices, LA’s joke became a secret, relentlessly locked by Les’s heirs. Tintin in the joues cheeks (especially in the first albums), tintin who rather than rejoice is said “Sorry ( E )” when a villain smashes his fist on the wall by wanting to hit it (the temple of the sun, page 19 )
In the crab to the golden princes (1941), tintin met the famous captain haddock. She’s escaping and literally falling on him; he’s drinking. The emergency is at its best: we have to move quickly, the bandits are at risk. Now, here’s what heroin says to the surly drunk, ” you gotta help me. And first you promise to stop drinking. Consider your dignity, Captain. What would your old mother say if she saw you in this state?... (page 16) and the captain fell apart crying ” Mom! ” Good promises, tenderness and tears: this is the definition of femininity by hergé. The punches that tintin can distribute to the bullies conceal his benevolence and his unwavering sweetness. And it is disguised as a boy allegedly “journalist” that she crosses and effleure without worrying about the misogynie of cultures, modesty of morality, stupidity of prejudice. An underground overthrow, our dear tintin. In the right line cryptosexuelle of a Marcel Proust with his Albert / Albertine, or a homer - poet of genius, today still masculinement together.
In Black Island (1932), tintin proudly wears a kilt in a écosse Scotland that does not require any of its inhabitants. After a plane crash (page 39), it falls into the ronces and rips off its clothes. A brave fellow in his pants accoure immediately and, without worrying about his commotions, he proposes to go to his place to change his clothes: “you will find all the necessary”. dénigrant the classic trousers, our lady opts with shine for the traditional skirt What the highland men wear on great occasions. And we see her struggling in her wallet - without underwear as it should -, until the end of the adventure, happy to finally be able to express her identité identity without betraying herself.
As soon as she can, the skirt or dress makes her appearance. It Peaks in tintin and the picaros (1955), where our “Mule Head” (said captain haddock) Enjupe a group of soldiers in a great travestissement travestissement. The very virile general alcazar also delivered himself to the little game of promise: ” this boy made me swear on the honor that my coup would be without bloodshed!... He said to general tapioca, by designating Our young girl (who passes for a young man) disguised as a young girl... with moustache! The other says: ” I see: an idealist, isn’t it?... these people don’t respect anything, alas! Not even the oldest traditions! ” the double meaning is tasty; and the confusion of genres, at its height.
We could go through all the albums with that prism. In particular the secret of the unicorn (1943) - secret all in the feminine and phallique symbol of the wonderful creature, the great absente of the album -, and the jewels of the castafiore (1963) - where the Sign ” Hush ” Tintin on the cover implicitly refers to ” family jewels ” that it does not have, and to the fact that Bianca Castafiore (” White chaste flower ” in French; dubbed by the press ” The Milanese Nightingale ”), Or actually... a castra. It is therefore understandable that the captain, a central male, caught in these jeux games.