Many comic fans noted that the story-line this week in Pearls Before Swine contained artwork out of character for creator Stephan Pastis’s drawing style. On Monday, Stephan tweeted the following:
This week's Pearls strips will contain a mind-blowing surprise. I promise. pic.twitter.com/bzLS9zkBdF
— Stephan Pastis (@stephanpastis) June 2, 2014
The story-line this week has a second grader taking over Stephan’s strip. Some have speculated that Calvin and Hobbes creator Bill Watterson is the drawing the strips (See Twitter timeline below for examples of fans speculating). See examples from yesterday and today:
Indeed there are Watterson-esque style in the above. I’m not fully convinced that it is Bill. If anything, the lettering is quite close, but slightly thinner than Bill’s usual style. The explosions in the background of Thursday’s strip are too unrealistic. It could be that Bill is the artist and he’s altered his style enough to fit better with Pearls. I dunno. Bill has been reconnecting with the cartooning community, but to ghost Stephan’s strip? I’m skeptical. I have a query out to Stephan himself for an official response. I’ll post his response when I get it.
So the question is, if it’s not Bill, who’s the artist in this week’s Pearls? Add your suggestions/speculation in the comments.
UPDATE: For the record, Stephan is not confirming or denying Watterson (or any other artist). He says we’ll have to wait until Saturday to find out.