Lightning In Comics



Lightning has physical reality, even if it is limited: it is scientifically studied until recently. Lightning is almost as unknown to researchers that the ocean floor is to oceanographers.

But lightning, all children know, is primarily magical, terrifying and magical, triumphant and magical.

To investigate this issue, I’ll look at those who believe in ball lightning as a conscious entity, as an agent of fate. At random,which does not exist let us take the two founders of the French Belgian comics, Hergé and Jacobs.

Georges Rémi his real name, Hergé in literature occupies a special place, as his accomplice EP Jacobs, and as their model for both, the great Jules Verne. These three authors have placed the myths at the heart of their work is a key to their success. Leopard-men, ball lightning, Yetis, expedition to the moon, lost Inca cities, meteorites aux folles properties, aliens, what Hergé myth he has forgotten? It was one of those who believe ball lightning as a conscious entity, an agent of destiny. For Hergé, the fireball is a fate not so blind that we can believe.

In The Seven Crystal Balls, the fireball does not hurt Prof Calculus, thus it is benevolent. But it is not, since some images later, it evaporates the mummy of the Inca, so the fireball becomes malicious. And this hesitation-waltz goes on. The Inca reborn, lightning is benevolent. The Inca wants revenge on Tintin: lightning turns malicious again. It isn’t, it was just a nightmare. Tintin wakes up, lightning becomes neutral. The fireball, miniature sun,  lava heart that Jacobs conjuguait legends and science mix Hergé loved the illogic of dreams in the fabric of reality. In short, Tintin is a pioneer of the inner adventure.

What he does in the world of paper, its creator does in his heart and in his soul. And the reader too. With Hergé comics is not a minor art. 

In The Castafiore Emerald, Haddock is found perched in a chandelier after lightning. A bad joke without consequences, like missing underwear grandmother.

In The Broken Ear, Tintin receives lightning releasing him from his bonds and carries twenty meters. Agent of fate, she arrived in time to prevent the death of the young hero.




A real wonder, in my view, is in the episode of levitating Lama in Tintin in Tibet. This good monk is subject to bouts of pure vision, of such intensity that without realizing it takes off above the ground, as if suddenly his body became lighter than air. In my conception of things, this man is awake, his awakening is a blessing for the good Lama is just as simple. I see all the signs of ancient enlightenment, one that the former gods received by lightning. The best, in this case, is the name of a Tibetan monk. Hergé called him Blessed Lightning !!

Also in Tintin in Tibet, a green fireball lights up the ax Haddock: the St. Elmo’s fire, well known sea … It appears at the tip of the masts. Curiously, the captain, yet seasoned sailor, seems to ignore this phenomenon. Like Tintin, Hergé is a great naive. As children. In The Temple of the Sun, it also imagine that the Indios of the Andes unaware of eclipses and have never seen any.

Much has criticized the blunders by taxing colonialist contempt. The times were different, albums like Tintin in Soviet or even Tintin in the (Belgian) Congo offer a frightening picture of everyday racism. On this chapter, Jacobs has shown more discerning.

Other occurrences of lightning are dotting the work of the great Hergé and that of his friend Edgar Jacobs. In SOS Meteors, or even in the yellow Brand, we see how Peter J. Edgar staged lightning and lightning. And we understand that this maestro of the 9th art – and are we called the BD – does not play on the same keyboard as his friend and comrade Georges Rémi aka Hergé.




The work of Hergé is contained entirely in its graphic style: the clear line. It is for the child, its graphics are a nice caricature, curves dominate, carefree gaiety is carving the lion’s share, even in the most tragic circumstances. We are in the world of childhood, where nothing matters where fearlessness is ordinary, and the pellet constant.

Drawn in a more realistic style that owes nothing to the clear line, the dream world of Jacobs, it comes straight from the operatic stage, of ancient tragedy and opera.

The father of Blake and Mortimer wanted to do opera singing career. This complete art would have admirably served the epic fantasy, mythological, and gently superlative obsolete Jacobs. 

I think of the little child that I have never ceased to be, as he still delights in long drafts of their unforgettable images.

If I were president, what to draw forbid, I would raise a temple to the 9th art.

Like Atlas carrying the heavens globe, I would carve two Atlanteans, to support the roof. One of the Atlanteans would be Georges Rémi aka Hergé, the other Edgar Pierre Jacobs. 

Entrance would be free for all the youngsters from 7 to 777.


The East is the spiritual world where rises the pure intelligible sun, and Orientals are those whose inner residence receives light of this eternal dawn.
Henri Corbin