In a decided departure from the usual Tuesday fare I serve up, I’m going to now talk about my favorite comic strip of all-time: Calvin and Hobbes. Bill Waterson’s creation was about a boy and his stuffed tiger. Their travels and adventures, many of them entirely in Calvin’s imagination, were both funny and poignant, sometimes dealing with such important subjects as education and parenting, but also just stupid kid stuff. The most interesting item about the strip is how short it lasted, as opposed to another classic like Peanuts. Calvin and Hobbes graced the newspaper pages from only 1985 to 1995, but still remains one of the most popular and well-recieved strips in recent memory. As can be seen here, Waterson’s style varied tremendously. From homages to old comics to a simple but hilariously drawn 4 panel strip, Waterson made readers want to keep on reading.
It’s probably a good thing that he chose to stop drawing…look at some of the strips that have become so bland and forced (some which I have highlighted in fact) during their extra long runs. Calvin and Hobbes remains a classic because of its high quality, and anything that could have ruined that quality was to be avoided, even if that meant stopping the strip entirely.