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Calvin and Hobbes had they grown up

NPR picked up on a webcomic, Pants are overrated, that did a two-part-series called Bacon and Hobbes wherein the artists depict Calvin aged 26 years, married to Susie with a daughter of their own named Bacon.

Parody attempts on Watterson’s classic strip isn’t new. I’m not sure what this adds to the Calvin and Hobbes universe – the artwork is okay, the Tuna fish punchline in the first comic is a near lift from one of Watterson’s first strips. The idea that Calvin eventually marries Susie isn’t that big of a stretch. Color me less than mildly impressed.

Part 1 is linked above, here’s part 2

Community Comments

#1 Norm Feuti
June/7/2011
@ 9:06 am

Recapturing that kind of magic just isn’t possible. Whenever someone tries we end up with midichlorians, or Indiana Jones vs aliens, or the planet Zeist.

It’s better to just let go. Sometimes dead is better.

#2 Tom Racine
June/7/2011
@ 9:37 am

Dammit, Norm…you can’t possibly be suggesting that people come up with new ideas and concepts! Gasp! The horror!

#3 Paul Fell
June/7/2011
@ 10:03 am

What Norm is suggesting is that we leave the masterpiece that is Calvin and Hobbes alone. Trying to do this ripoff (I say that only because they are using some of the original characters as Watterson drew them) is like those thousands of Elvis impersonators trying to emulate The King. It just doesn’t work.

#4 b.j. Dewey
June/7/2011
@ 10:51 am

I’m surprised to be saying that I think the Heyerman brothers captured a bit of the best of C&H in the scenes between the grown-up Calvin’s little girl meeting the “real” Hobbes for the first time. The panel is silent, no dialogue needed, they like each other – it’s the young Calvin and Hobbes all over again, the essence of their friendship. In that panel, I see the future of a new C&H, this time with Calvin’s daughter but (apparently as the brothers envisioned him) the same, good old, wonderful Hobbes. I even had the thought, “He’s back!” Or he could be – maybe, if the Heyermans wanted to at least try it, especially now that their C&H work has bought them new attention.

Or maybe what might be is best left to our imaginations. Whatever, it makes me again wish Watterson had found it in himself to further develop his strip.

#5 B Birdashaw
June/7/2011
@ 10:58 am

Everyone misses Calvin and Hobbes, but having someone else imagine what happens next ruins the spirit of the comic for the rest of us who have our own ideas of what happens after Watterson retired.

#6 Rick Kirkman
June/7/2011
@ 11:02 am

What’s the big deal? It was just an experiment, something fun to try. They said they aren’t going to do any more.

#7 Don N. Hagist
June/7/2011
@ 11:02 am

I think this should be considered an homage rather than a ripoff or attempt to recapture anything. It’s just a 2-strip series within a regular comic feature offering a cute reminder of a beloved and influential classic.
If someone was trying to launch a whole new feature like this, it would be an uncreative ripoff, but in this case it’s a nice salute to a master. And pleasingly less crude and more interesting than the usual Pants Are Overrated fare.

#8 Bridgett Spicer
June/7/2011
@ 11:12 am

I think the problem here is what happened with Star Wars. The back story became this wonderful mysterious entity of its own, which was left to OUR imaginations. The Clone Wars, how Luke’s father and mother met, the politics and the Old Republic (which was swept away) had years to germinate in our minds… and although this is a matter of opinion, the “spelling out” of these things took the magic away (along with the WAY it was spelled out… but that’s a different matter).

I would rather let Calvin stay a little kid and the Old Republic/Clone Wars remain mysterious.

#9 Daniel Boris
June/7/2011
@ 11:16 am

Liked the Penny Arcade references… Heh heh!

#10 Ed Power
June/7/2011
@ 11:21 am

I’d like to see it where Calvin is grown but still imagines Hobbes is real, except now it’s creepy and sad due to his age.

Susie should have a restraining order against him. His parents should be worried sick, etc.

Finally after a few years of the strip running, Calvin takes Hobbes to live with the other tigers in the zoo. Sadly though, those tigers start mauling the stuffed animal and Calvin is forced to picture his child hood friend being torn to shreds.

The last panels just fill with blood and over it in caption boxes are Calvin’s childhood words…”It’s a magical world…let’s go exploring.”

Solid red last panel.

The end.

My work here is done. You are all welcome.

#11 George Ford
June/7/2011
@ 11:29 am

I feel that this was a great tribute to a timeless classic and not a rip-off in the slightest. They captured the essence and magic of the original series and executed it in a decent rendition of Watterson’s style.

It’s only a two-parter so there’s no need to be afraid that this will be a continuous thing. Good job, guys!

#12 Jeff Darcy
June/7/2011
@ 11:37 am

I have an idea!!! Charlie and Lucy grow up and get married
and have a kid the Lucy names Chip, as in Chip off the ol’
Blockhead! GET IT? Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

Then Snoopy and woodstock get married and have a little…..

I’ve got to draw this up and send it to uclick

#13 Bridgett Spicer
June/7/2011
@ 11:47 am

Jeff… Ha! Love it! But…. Don’t forget Peppermint Patty & Marcy who live in LA and have “sperm bank kids” …. oh wait, that was “The Kids Are Alright.”

#14 Norm Feuti
June/7/2011
@ 11:47 am

Personally, I was referring more to the majority sentiment of the 300+ comments beneath the strip – that bringing Calvin & Hobbes back to life would be a good thing.

I couldn’t disagree more. I think if Watterson himself brought the strip back, it wouldn’t be the same. It was a perfect strip, at a perfect time. You can’t recreate that.

I realize they were just doing an homage. I don’t really have a problem with that.

#15 Chad Welch
June/7/2011
@ 11:59 am

Maybe its just my recent efforts trying to avoid being overly cynical, but I rather enjoyed this homage to C&H. I don’t think the cartoonist was trying replace or hack Watterson’s work.

I’d rather see this than Calvin pissing on [Insert Random Brand/Logo here], anyday of the week. THAT is when I take offense on behalf of my childhood.

Lighten up, enjoy it for what it is…a tip of the hat to Watterson, one of this guy’s heroes.

#16 b.j. Dewey
June/7/2011
@ 12:19 pm

Rick, Don, George: I think the big deal here is that the brothers really did a heckuva good job, understanding and remaining faithful to the essence of C&H via their good artwork. So it is great homage and tribute to the strip – and there it probably should end. The only one who could pick it up from here is, well, we all know who.

#17 MJ (Michael Pohrer)
June/7/2011
@ 12:23 pm

I think it’s a great little encapsulation of a possible future. I think the spirit was captured, and I am now pulling out my Lazy Sunday Book!

#18 Bearman Cartoons
June/7/2011
@ 2:31 pm

“artwork is ok” “color me less than mildly impressed” Little harsh IMO.

I thought the artwork was a great homage to C&H and better than most of the tribute cartoons out there that I have seen.

People do webcomic, fan-fiction and pop culture references all the time about things that impacted them as a child. These guys chose a comic that obviously had influence on them. But there seems to be some pervasive attitude that Watterson is untouchable.

#19 Darryl Heine
June/7/2011
@ 3:58 pm

I wish there was a Calvin and Hobbes revival with this format!

#20 Dan Olson
June/7/2011
@ 6:55 pm

Ed,

You’re right about it being creepy and sad. Done in the right hands it can also be very funny, may I point you to “Imagine This”?

#21 Jim Lavery
June/7/2011
@ 8:43 pm

They should have modernized it by making Calvin a vampire and Hobbes a Zombie–that’s all the kids understand today, with their crazy disco music and all that.

#22 Shane Davis
June/7/2011
@ 10:06 pm

It’s just bad.

Susie’s character is all wrong. Calvin would be far meaner and cynical, I think. If anything, the strip Watterson did with them as adults fighting already did what this strip tried in vain to do. A fair effort to guess their adult physical appearance, a huge swing and miss on getting their characters right.

If you can’t get C&H charcter’s down, what’s the point?

#23 John Read
June/8/2011
@ 6:32 am

This, to me, is no different than those fan films featuring licensed characters in mini movies and fake trailers. They’re usually done by serious fans of Batman, Star Wars and Star Trek who are, for better or worse, just showing their love by personally extending the life of their fictional favorites. No harm, no foul.

#24 Shane Davis
June/8/2011
@ 7:47 am

Well, at least it was done in the spirit of appreciation, not like some of the really mean spiritied, vulgar ‘reinventions’ like I’ve seen done with Peanuts. I shudder to think what it would look like if the idiots at ‘Family Guy’ had thought of this first….

It is clear the artists truly love C&H, it shows. But I just don’t think it captures the true heart of the original.

But you’re right, there is really no harm here. I’d like to see someone do a ’25 years later’ with Bloom County, but Breathed already kind of did that with ‘Opus,’ didn’t he?

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