These series comprised ten stories, which are mere chapters of a chronic of what lies before us.
With Simon Auclair won prices, and acceptance from his comrades, and appreciation amongst his equals.

Chroniques des Temps à Venir; Kroniek van een Toekomstige Wereld
Claude Auclair: SIMON OF THE RIVER
original title: Simon du Fleuve
Six stories appeared in Kuifje, and five of these in Tintin (the first cycle); four more appeared right away in album (the second cycle).

For copyright-reasons publication in album of the first story "La ballade de Cheveu Rouge" was not allowed at first. Pirate editions emerged, and in 1999 the first official album-publication was realized as part of DE ZWARTE DAME/LA DAME NOIRE


Album one, or the second story, started with only part of the illustration. In the second album the first illustration is mirrored. Both not in the weekly. Also not in the English version.


Jason Muller knew it all: get rid of what is interfering with your solitude before it can cause you any trouble. He could be bothered by military usurpers housing in the centres of downtown-area, or by frustrated gangs amidst the ruins of the cities. Their fear gave him the name ‘Crazy Jason’.   
On the other hand there was Simon. When he was a child, his father was a slave in one of the cities. He grew up near the river. He helped people who were victimized by oppression. He hated violence and was never quick to use it. During his adventures he found a partner, raised a family. But never was he part of a clan or tribe.


above: the ex libris and below: the centerfold and all the way down (left) the poster.


Charles told us about the very near future as if it already had happened. As a matter of fact it WAS history.
       Although violence is a very old thing, these developments were new. But let Charles talk:
‘The signs started to manifest itself in 1967-68, I believe. Restless youth from several countries all over the world stood up, but to no avail.
       Two great powers of old waged an economical battle with no quarter, either directly, or by means of other nations who had plunged themselves into this endless war, fighting for their rights as free people. But energy resources of the planet grew lesser, and distress calls came from everywhere. Some nations realised, that they had the weapon of all times:
       Oil, a liquid found beneath the surface. Almost the whole economy of the super users and other countries was based on its use. The largest producers deployed it by limiting its outcome, thus creating difficulties for the world economy, and turning out a hopeless situation. After several years of confusion several wars broke loose all over the world, because everybody wanted to control the oil-producing regions.
       Being as complicated as it was in those days, the situation in the world could only be understood on a schematic level. Minorities rose everywhere, attacking their invaders. Superpowers became entangled in their ideological contradictions, but were armed to their teeth with nuclear weapons ready to wipe their enemy off the face of the earth. They controlled desires to rule, and succeeded in avoiding total annihilation. Unauthorized governments confirmed confusion. Disintegrating societies fell apart whenever discomfort and popular dislike became too much.
       Riots broke out everywhere, rendering police forces overworked.
       This blow was felt most in highly developed countries. A new life had to be learned; everybody in their own way. People went to the country, founding new communities. Farmers sharing their harvest with nomadic shepherds, returning crop for meat.
       Often enough difficult, but the will to live was greater. Only well organized groups could survive, because looters from the remains of the cities became more and more aggressive.
       Political centre points were formed on several places on the earth, keeping contact to stop further decline of the human race. A world government was formed, based in each former capital, wanting to install a new civilisation. (…)
       All technical means and every exploitable energy source were gathered, and made available to these local governments. Forward bases were erected to gather nomads and drifters. Their accent lay on the military, and that aroused hostility. People remembered the past full of bloody incidents against freedom loving nomads: they were strongly against regrouping.
       Parallel with this development all available scholars were gathered, and these were put to work in research or practical matters. The goal was twofold: finding new means to stop deterioration of civilization, and reinstalling industry in the least struck areas or the most valuable sectors.
       Several cities backed away from the central authority. Leaders were supported by mercenary armies and called themselves rulers of the cities. Staying in power was all that counted for them, wanting to install a new totalitarian order.

   flyleaf first cycle

Long gone, but still present: one page (published fall 1985) in the story of an agent from space, in celebration of 40 years Kuifje/Tintin-weekly.

Exactly one year later readers of Kuifje/Tintin-weekly saw in two pages how Simon and family met comic star Kuifje/Tintin and company.



Back to nature; living in harmony with the forces around us; living in balance with the forces within. Getting rid of the whole series macho idea was probably one of Simons biggest struggles.

  flyleaf second cycle