The Black Island
The Black Island (French: L'Île Noire) is the seventh volume of The Adventures of Tintin, the series o comic albums by Belgian cartoonist Hergé. Tintin travels to Great Britain, where he is framed for a theft, hunted by detectives Thomson and Thompson, and is on the trail o a gang of counterfeiters.
Synopsis[eedit | eedit soorce]
While walking in the Belgian countryside, Tintin sees an unregistered plane making an emergency landing, but when he goes over to help, he is shot by the pilot. He wakes up in hospital the next morning, when Thomson and Thompson visit and tell him that an unregistered plane had crashed in Eastdown in Sussex, England the previous night. After hearing this, Tintin wonders whether the plane which crashed was the same plane that he had encountered and decides to go to England to investigate.
Tintin intends to go by train to Ostend, where he will take the ferry to England. At Brussels' railway station, Tintin is noticed by two men, who frame him for assault and robbery of one of them. He is arrested by Thomson and Thompson, who are also on the train, although he pleads his innocence. He manages to escape when the detectives are asleep by handcuffing them, and boards the ferry just before it leaves, where he is again spotted by the two men.
On arriving in England, Tintin takes a taxi to Eastdown. The two men, with the help of their accomplices, Ivan, pursue the taxi and eventually kidnap him. They take him to the edge of cliff and where they order him to jump into the sea at gunpoint. Snowy rescues him by making a goat go chase the two men, who escape. Later Tintin finds the plane crash in the outskirts of Eastdown, but cannot find the bodies of the crew, who have escaped. Further investigations take him to the woods, where he sees a jacket abandoned by one of the pilots. On searching it, he finds a torn piece note which reads Eastdown, Sussex, Müller, 3 f.r. Δ, but he is unable to understand what it means. Later while walking to Eastdown, he finds the estate of Dr. J. W. Müller, an evil German doctor who runs a mental institution which tortures his enemies to insanity. Wondering whether this Müller is the same person mentioned on the note, Tintin decides to sneak into the estate, but is caught by Müller who decides to take him to his mental institution. However he manages to escapes and locks himself in an upstairs room, but during the fighting Müller has accidentally set the house on fire. Tintin, who has fallen unconscious after a bullet breaks a bottle of Chloroform near his head, is finally rescued by the firefighter alterted by Snowy. In the meantime, Müller and his accomplices have fled.
The next morning, Tintin again visits the estate to investigate further. He finds some electric cables in the gardens, which he follows to uncover three red beacons marking out a triangle. With this information, he then makes sense of the note which says that three of something unknown would be dropped over Müller's estate if the triangle of red flares were lit, though he is unsure what that "something" actually is. After dark he lights the flares, a plane drops three sacks of counterfeit money over the estate, meaning that Müller is running a gang of forgers. He then pursues the duo of Müller and Ivan through the English countryside, a chase which ends only when Thomson and Thompson arrest him by chance at a countryside tavern where Müller and Ivan are also hiding. However they release him after he pleads that he will give himself up after he gets the forgers arrested. Accompanied by the detectives, he sees Müller and Ivan taking off in a plane. He abandons the detectives and follows the forgers in another plane, but is not able to catch up with them due to bad weather and crash lands in rural Scotland. He is rescued by a friendly Scottish farmer, who gives him a kilt to wear and shelter for the night.
The next morning, Tintin hears in the radio that the plane which he had been pursuing crashed off the coast of Kiltoch, a Scottish coastal village, with the victims presumed drowned. He is still suspicious and goes to Kiltoch to continue with his investigation. At Kiltoch, an old man tells him the story of Black Island- an island off the coast of Kiltoch where a residing "ferocious beast" kills anyone who goes to that island. On hearing this story, he becomes even more suspicious about the nature of the crash and decides to go to the Black Island the following day to investigate, despite warnings from the villagers. At the Black Island, Tintin encounters the "ferocious beast"- a gorilla named Ranko. He manages to flee from Ranko and its trainer- a man named Puschov (who was one of the two men Tintin encountered earlier in the book)- by hiding in a sea cave. Tintin goes further inside the sea cave, which leads into a printing press and finds out that the forgers are using the Black Island as their hideout, with Ranko being trained by them to kill anyone who enters the island. He temporarily subdues all the forgers, including Müller, Ivan and Puschov (they free themselves shortly afterwards) and contacts the police through radio. After a desperate rearguard action (which results in Ranko injuring his arm), the forgers are arrested by the police. Tintin, along with Thomson and Thompson (who are finally convinced that Tintin was innocent all along) investigate the island further before leaving; the basement of the island's castle (the forger's hideout) was a plane hangar with the beach at low tide used as an airfield (which explained how the forgers were presumed drowned by the Kiltoch locals). The book ends with a now submissive Ranko placed in Glasgow Zoo and Tintin returning to Brussels by air.