In the last year, it’s been fun to see Bill Watterson, the shy genius behind Calvin and Hobbes, popping up in headlines. In October of 2013, the Internet started buzzing over tribute art he’d created for fellow cartoonist Richard Thompson (they’re doing a show together at Ohio State this spring in honor of Thompson’s wonderful comic Cul de Sac). That same month, our own Jake Rossen somehow wrangled Mr. Watterson into doing an interview with mental_floss. (Which sort of felt like a miracle to us!) And just yesterday, Slate and a bunch of other sites reported on this poster that Watterson created for an exciting new documentary about the future of comics called Stripped.
Being a fan of comics, it’s a little shameful that I hadn’t heard about this doc until after I saw the buzz about the poster art. (The comics page was a BIG DEAL in my family; when my mom once insisted that we subscribe to the New York Times, my dad ended the argument by reminding her that however good the New York Times might be, it couldn’t be that good because it didn’t have The Far Side, Bloom County, or Calvin and Hobbes. So we kept subscribing to the local Delaware paper.)
In any case, if you like comics, you should definitely check out the trailer for Stripped. It boasts interviews with tons of legendary cartoonists (including Watterson), but apparently, the reason he drew the art was that he liked the movie so much that he wanted to contribute more. Sounds pretty great! Of course, we’re hoping that his views on the industry have changed since September 1990, when he published some illustrations about “The Cheapening of Comics”: