Jose Timon is an immensely popular fictional character in Tejas. He is a secret government agent, particularly noted for amazing escapes, elaborate fights and a long line of seduced women. Initially appearing in the novels of Miguel Poderas (1908-1964), Timon took on new life in a series of thirty motion pictures, starting with Doctor Nunco in 1962. Since Poderas' death, other writers have continued with the series. While in Tejas itself the books and films are tremendous successes, elsewhere they have had mixed returns.
The motion pictures based on the original novels include:
- DOCTOR NUNCO (Doctor Never)
- LA MANO DE ORO (The Golden Hand)
- DIAMANTES SON MAL (Diamonds Are Evil)
- REINA DE ESPADAS (Queen of Swords)
- EL ASESINO QUE ME AMÓ (The Killer Who Loved Me)
- PELOTA DE RELÁMPAGO (Lightning Ball)
- NUNCA SÓLO UN (Never Just One)
- EL CALAMAR DE PLATA (The Silver Squid)
Other movies have been based upon books written by other authors, including:
- SILENCIADORES (Silencers)
- HOMBRE DE MISTERIO (Man of Mystery)
- LOS DESTRUCTORES (The Destroyers)
- HERMANO MÁS JOVEN (Little Brother)
- HOMBRE DE PELIGRO (Danger Man)
It should be noted that of the many motion pictures based upon the Timon novels and short stories all but a few have been relatively low-budget.
The Secret Agent
The character works for an unnamed Tejano Intelligence agency as a field operative, investigating and thwarting plots against civilization, or simply against the Tejas itself. He is described as a tall, slender but athletic man with jet-black hair and saturnine features offset by dark blue eyes. Timon prefers to dress well, and is famous for his wit, even in deadly situations. His vices (or recreations) include high stake gambling, a variety of dangerous sports, heavy drinking and high-quality cigars. But mostly he is interested in women.
Another trait of Timon is his proficiency with weapons. An expert with firearms, he has proven himself a superb hand-to-hand fighter with a taste for using a knife (his weapon of choice). He has also demonstrated his ability to kill with a whip.
His code name is "Lobo Negro" (Black Wolf). In the fictional universe of the books and movies, the black color his codename indicates he is authorized to kill the enemies of the state upon his own authority.
The original novels portray Timon as a somewhat world-weary moralist with the natural instincts of a predator, motivated by extreme patriotism (his family have been Tejano soldiers for three generations). The later novels as well as most films usually lighten his character, as well as assigning to him surprising skills (such as airship maintenance and fluency in obscure languages). Whereas originally his character barely thought about his sexual conquests once they left his life, later novels tended to make him slightly more conventional--entering into relationships, albeit brief ones. The movies followed the exactly opposite course, initially showing a more dashing seducer of women, gradually becaming more ruthless and voracious as the films went on.
Timon in general works with several other characters who show up in most if not all the books and/or films.
- Papi is the most regularly appearing character other than Timon himself. Papi is an older woman, usually portrayed in late middle age or older, who is Timon's direct superior and sends him on his missions. She has considerable authority over him, evidently heading the unnamed intelligence agency they both serve. She has been portrayed in film by various actresses in a broad spectrum of ways, from stylish harridan to grandmotherly-yet-shrewd. In the novels, she is rather like a ferocious maiden aunt who nevertheless has great affection for Jose Timon. Her real name is unknown. "Papi" is either a nickname or a codename, possibly both.
- The Major is another official in the unnamed-intelligence agency, a dapper figure with a large moustache who apparently reports directly to Papi (and might be considered her eventual successor). He is far more likely to be seen "in the field" providing backup or liaison activities. Whether he is in fact a real Major, and in what service, remains unrevealed. When appearing alone (i.e. without Papi) the Major is a firm disciplinarian. However, when partnered with Papi, he often takes on the role of "Devil's Advocate" on behalf of Timon.
- Emmaline is another operative of the agency, a surprisingly waif-like woman who operates as a deep cover agent. She turns up several times in the novels and three times in the films. Both portray her as a very brave and intelligent spy with relatively few fighting skills, assisted by her great beauty in infiltrating various gangs, corporations, families and clubs. She is virtually the only woman with whom Timon refuses even to flirt and is in fact very protective of her. Her age may (or may not) have something to do with this, as she is portrayed as barely twenty years old (although this has hardly prevented his sexual adventures elsewhere). Instead, he seems to treat her like a sister and some fans speculate that is precisely what she might be. Certainly, his reaction to any threat to her is murderous rage. In both novel and film PERMISO PARA MATAR ("Permission to Kill") a Tejano naval officer beats her, prompting Timon to hunt down and personally kill every single member of that officer's traitorous cabal of spies.
Virtually ever novel or film includes his bedding at least two or three women, one or more of whom may even be his enemies. Sometimes a night of passion with Timon is enough to make them change sides. His romantic conquests include royal princesses, Japanese geishas, stars of opera, stage, screen and television as well as fellow secret agents, professional assassins, champion athletes, debutantes, at least one Novice nun, a voodoo priestess, the wife and daughter and sister and aunt of a Mormon priest, the daughter of his immediate superior, a string of personal secretaries, waitresses, dancers and in one memorable event a pair of seventeen-year-old Prussian twin schoolgirls. At least twice he has seduced lesbians, who have changed their ways after experiencing one night with him.
Roughly one third of the women (or girls) who have carnal relations with Jose Timon survive by story's end. Many end up tortured to death by Timon's enemies. Approximately one quarter of those who die are slain by Timon himself.
Timon's enemies are generally either political fanatics (usually of Louisianne, North American, Mejicano or Alta Californian extraction) or extremely selfish Tejanos who put their own ambitions or greed before loyalty to their own country. Most are physically weak or frail in some way, albeit brilliant. Thus they rely upon physically imposing henchmen.
Doctor Nunco, for example, was a man over ninety years old. The mysterious criminal mastermind known only as "La Mano de Oro" was physically obese. Others include an albino, a blind woman, a man born without arms, a leper, the survivor of a shark attack and (most recently) a woman who had contracted AIDS. Some bear a distinct resemblance to Sax Romaine. Many work for or live in or often visit a fictional nation that neighbors Tejas, called Las Vegas. It is portrayed as den of criminals and immorality.
Timon must often fight at least one or two colorful henchmen in the course of each adventure. Such are usually physically very impressive in some way, such as gigantic size or in once case having teeth filed to points.
Within Tejas itself, Timon has been a leading character in comic books, radio plays as well as telenovellas. Ever since his first introduction in 1949, most Tejano critics praised the books are exceptional adventure stories. Others have not been so kind. While the books and films have garnered fans all over the world, in most nations they remain something of a cult favorite rather than a mainstream success. Generally, they are viewed as exciting but unduly violent, formulaic and very exploitive of women as well as excessively chauvinistic, since the books pretty much take the view that Tejas is the noblest place in history or on earth.
Many compare them to the Jaunge Blone series, even to the point (sometimes) of claiming plagiarism. But many details between the two, as well as general tone, are very different. For one thing, the Timon films and novels are much more violent, even gruesome.