and Hobbes is, without a doubt, one of the greatest comic strip
s of all-time.
It was drawn by Bill Watterson
from 1985 until he got really bitter and disappeared
out of the public eye
in 1996 (at which time the strip was carried by over 2,400 newspapers). You can go read old C&H strips at http://www.calvinandhobbes.com
The Characters (just short bios, see the individual character nodes for more information)
Calvin is a six-year-old boy, and is the main character of the comic
strip. He lives at home with his parents, Calvin's Mom
. He has a stuffed tiger named Hobbes
, who he believes is real
and with which he converses and interacts. He has an overactive imagination,
and just about every comic strip has some element of fantasy in it. Calvin
is rambunctious, getting into trouble frequently and often breaking everything
remotely breakable in his parents' house. He is extremely smart, but
his imagination and immaturity make success in school impossible. He
represents the piece in all of us that wants to stay a kid forever--and who
can blame him?
Hobbes is a stuffed tiger that comes to life whenever only Calvin is
around. Hobbes is the voice of reason (Calvin's dramatic foil
trying to talk Calvin out of harebrained ideas that usually culminate in
something blowing up or sending the two of them hurtling off a large cliff
Loves tuna fish
. Although they fight often, Hobbes is a perfect
best friend and companion. He is usually lying in wait
when he returns from school, to pounce on him with a giant hug as his own
peculiar show of affection.
says: "I don't think of Hobbes as a doll that miraculously comes to life when Calvin's around. Neither do I think of Hobbes as the product of Calvin's imagination...Calvin sees Hobbes one way, and everyone else sees Hobbes another way."
Always around, trying to make sure Calvin doesn't blow up the house or do something equally catastrophic.
Works as a patent lawyer
. Most often seen sitting at home, trying
to get Calvin to build character
or giving him ridiculous
and completely wrong explanations of how something in the world works. (The
world was black and white
A girl in Calvin's class. Calvin is constantly trying to gross her
out at lunch or throw snowball
s at her (because he has a crush on her,
Calvin's first grade
. The strips in which Rosalyn came to babysit are some of the best in the series, IMHO
. Not very bright. Always after Calvin's lunch money
Spaceman Spiff/Stupendous Man/Tracer Bullet
Three of Calvin's alter egos. Spaceman Spiff is Calvin's daydream-self,
off fighting frightening aliens on strange planets. Stupendous Man
is Calvin's disguise outfit when he needs to do something incognito
, such as thwarting Babysitter Girl
's evil plans.
Other Calvin and Hobbes nodes:
a personal note...I grew up with Calvin and Hobbes
--I was 5 in 1985 when
the strip began and 16 in 1996 when it concluded--and I think for a lot of
people in my generation it represents our innocence lost
than any serious medium ever could. Calvin was what we all wanted to
be, wasn't it? The perfect kid. Evil plots to escape our teachers
and babysitters, transporting ourselves back in time to hang out with dinosaur
for an afternoon, with a best friend
betrayed us, never
was too busy for us.
As I find myself becoming more Calvin's Dad
nowadays, I take
solace in knowing that Calvin
is always somewhere inside me no matter how
deeply buried it might seem. All I need do is open up the pages of
any Calvin and Hobbes
anthology--or just look at any of the walls in my bedroom, where I have dog-eared and yellowed old strips taped up almost everywhere--and peer into his wide, innocent, rambunctious
six year old eyes.
And maybe into my own.