Paris : Tintin has discovered his inner Rambo and is ready to give Russian bully boys a taste of their own medicine in a book which will go on sale in France Wednesday.
But before Moscow condemns it as another piece of Western Russophobia, this has nothing to do with Vladimir Putin.
"Tintin and the Soviets" is finally being published in colour more than eight decades after the comic book first appeared, at a time when Europe was also fretting about a rising Russian menace.
Unlike the rest of his adventures, the book that launched the boy hero in 1930 only ever appeared in black and white.
But to cries of sacrilege from the purists and even its late creator's secretary, Tintin's publishers Casterman are issuing a colour version of the story Wednesday in French where the young reporter gives a rogue's gallery of Russian baddies what for.
For decades the viscerally anti-Communist story -- which first appeared in the Belgian Catholic weekly Le Vingtieme Siecle (The 20th Century) -- was not regarded as a full part of the Tintin canon.
It was only in 1999, 16 years after the death of Tintin's creator Herge, that it was recognised as part of the official 24-story series.
Experts have long debated whether the rough and ready testosterone-fuelled character in the story was fully developed, and could be seen as Tintin proper.