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Author: Subject: He May Have No Regrets, But I Do.

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  posted on 2/4/2010 at 02:56 PM
One of the Greatest Comic Strips of All Time. It's 15 years now since he abruptly stopped this favorite of mine, and millions others. I understand his reason's for wanting to leave while fresh, but I think he had 5 years left before anyone ever considered him stale.

'Calvin and Hobbes' Creator Bill Watterson Has No Regrets

http://www.aolnews.com/nation/article/calvin-and-hobbes-creator-bill-watter son-has-no-regrets-about-stopping-strip/19341573?icid=main|htmlws-main-n|dl 8|link3|http%3A%2F%2Fwww.aolnews.com%2Fnation%2Farticle%2Fcalvin-and-hobbes -creator-bill-watterson-has-no-regrets-about-stopping-strip%2F19341573

AOL News (Feb. 2) -- In today's cult of celebrity, it's a rare phenomenon: an artist who produces much-loved work, wins the hearts of fans and critics, and then abruptly retires and attempts to lead a normal, sometimes reclusive, life.

We're talking about the likes of Harper Lee, J.D. Salinger and "Calvin and Hobbes" comic strip creator Bill Watterson, who recently gave what's believed to be his first interview since 1989, to his hometown newspaper, The Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Watterson, now 51, crushed millions of funnies readers around the world in 1995 when he suddenly retired Calvin, a 6-year-old, philosophical version of Bart Simpson, and Hobbes, the stuffed tiger who comes to life in his imagination. Watterson has never really talked about it publicly, until now.

C.H. Pete Copeland, The Plain Dealer / AP
Bill Watterson, the reclusive creator of the syndicated comic strip "Calvin & Hobbes," works in his home in 1986. He retired the popular characters in 1995.
It turns out Watterson ended "Calvin and Hobbes" at the height of its popularity because he understands something the creators of long-running TV shows like "ER" and "The Simpsons" may not have.

"It's always better to leave the party early," Watterson writes in an e-mail Q&A with the Plain Dealer's John Campanelli. "If I had rolled along with the strip's popularity and repeated myself for another five, 10 or 20 years, the people now 'grieving' for "Calvin and Hobbes" would be wishing me dead and cursing newspapers for running tedious, ancient strips like mine instead of acquiring fresher, livelier talent. And I'd be agreeing with them."

He added, "I've never regretted stopping when I did."

Still, like many rock stars of the 1990s, Watterson waxes nostalgic about his celebrity. "Ah, the life of a newspaper cartoonist -- how I miss the groupies, drugs and trashed hotel rooms!" he joked.

But seriously -- in the 15 years since retiring from "Calvin and Hobbes," Watterson has been laying low in the Greater Cleveland area, no paparazzi in sight.

"The public attention has faded a lot. In pop culture time, the 1990s were eons ago," he said. "An artwork can stay frozen in time, but I stumble through the years like everyone else. I think the deeper fans understand that and are willing to give me some room to go on with my life."

Watterson may be kidding himself in that regard, as "Calvin and Hobbes" books continue to sell half a million copies a year, and recycled versions of the comic strip still run in 50 countries around the world, not including the U.S. Watterson long ago refused to license his characters, which means no animated TV specials or cuddly Hobbes toys, but fans will get a break this year when the U.S. Postal Service issues a "Calvin and Hobbes" stamp.

How soon will the reclusive Watterson actually use one to mail a letter?


[Edited on 2/4/2010 by SpyNet]

 
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Zen Peach



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  posted on 2/4/2010 at 03:51 PM
My favorite strip of all time.

The one I cut out and saved had Calvin sitting at a stand selling butt kickings for a $1.00. Hobbes asks hows business and Calvin replays " terrible and almost everyone needs one" Or something to that effect

[Edited on 2/4/2010 by fast43]

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 2/4/2010 at 05:24 PM
quote:
My favorite strip of all time.
Mine, too. Love Calvin and Hobbes and the comics just haven't been the same since they left.

http://www.s-anand.net/calvinandhobbes.html#19891022

 

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  posted on 2/4/2010 at 05:49 PM
Calvin & Hobbes and Gary Larson's work are two things I really miss in the world of comics.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 2/4/2010 at 06:00 PM
Both those strips are now out in beautiful bound complete hard cover books. I highly recommend both.

 

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  posted on 2/4/2010 at 06:05 PM
quote:
Calvin & Hobbes and Gary Larson's work are two things I really miss in the world of comics.


I miss Bloom County.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 2/4/2010 at 06:11 PM
I miss the strip a lot but I don't remember the end being abrupt or sudden. I remember knowing it was going to end for some time.

 

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