Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Poynter Online; Calvin and Hobbes, All Over Again

Greg Favre at Poynter Online - Calvin and Hobbes, All Over Again: "I must confess I don't read the comics as avidly as I used to. And it has nothing to do with not being an active editor any more. There are simply too many wannabees, such as Prickly City, or too many not-so-funny ones, such as Non Sequitur and so many others, or too many older strips whose discharge papers should have been served long ago.

But in 1985 a brand new strip hit my desk at the Sacramento Bee. It was my introduction to Calvin and Hobbes. And I fell in love with the little guy created by Bill Watterson. The best of the syndicate salesmen, as most editors know, would be first ballot selections in any Hype Hall of Fame. For too many of their offerings they need the hype, but this was one of those times when it wasn't needed. Some strips simply sell themselves.

Watterson, who had failed as an editorial cartoonist, struck the golden vein, even though, as he says in the introduction of this collection, his editor, Lee Salem, told him to keep his day job designing car and grocery ad layouts.

But it wasn't long before it became clear that Calvin was here to stay. At least as long as Watterson wanted to keep him going. What a stretch of humor that turned out to be. If only it had lasted longer."

It's been good to read the reruns in the AJC, and I hope someday to afford this collection. But it sure does make me miss 'em.


At 11:10 AM, Anonymous Mark Luebker said...

Hey Peter, it's not Calvin & Hobbes, but there's a relatively new strip running in our local paper that has a spark that reminds me of what I felt when I first read Watterston. It's called "Frazz," and I keep looking for the stuffed tiger...


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