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Calvin & Hobbes question


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28 replies to this topic

#1 of 29 OFFLINE   Evan Case

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Posted November 12 2003 - 06:54 AM

After recently buying the mammoth Complete Far Side collection (among the best $81 I've ever spent), I've decided to catch up on my other favorite comic strip from the late-80s/early-90s, Calvin & Hobbes. The only books I still own are the Tenth Anniversary and Attack of the Deranged Killer Monster Snow Goons (or some such title). I know that the last 4-5 years (starting with Snow Goons) are only available in seperate, single editions, while the first 6 years were available individually and in a trio of Treasury editions (Essential, Indispesible, and Authorative). I've heard conflicting reports about the completeness of the Treasuries, some saying they include everything from the first six sets, others saying that they used only selected strips, with the real incentives being colorized Sunday strips, a small (though exclusive) cartoon, and a cheaper per-comic price. So basically, my question is, do I have to buy each of the first six single sets to get all of the early syndicated strips, or will the Treasury sets cover the first six years completely? Thanks. Evan P.S. Is there anything special about the two Sunday collections (Lazy Sunday and Sunday Strips 1985-1995) that would make them required purhases?
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#2 of 29 OFFLINE   Mike SJ

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Posted November 12 2003 - 07:00 AM

I had found a site that posted every single comic of C&H by date but it looks as though youve done your research and have probably found that site [im assuming its the official web site]

#3 of 29 OFFLINE   Grant B

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Posted November 12 2003 - 08:11 AM

Last year the San Francisco Cartoon Museum had a C&H exhibit. Without a doubt it was the best time I ever had in a Museum. If you ever get a chance to see the originals, jump at it.
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#4 of 29 OFFLINE   John Chow

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Posted November 12 2003 - 11:33 AM

Hmm...i'd always assumed (*key word*) that they contained the whole thing, but I could be wrong. I like the treasuries since they have the Sunday comics printed in color, and usually at the beginning contain a nice full page colored drawing, or an extended story. btw, if you have any Half Price bookstores in your area you might be able to find some of these books cheap, and in some cases new as well.

#5 of 29 OFFLINE   Matthew Watson

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Posted November 12 2003 - 11:43 AM

I came across this link:http://www.reemst.co...bes/?page=books

a few weeks ago. It has the breakdowns of which books contain what strips, including the dates. There seems to be one missing strip in the entire run, otherwise it looks like the series is collected in its entirety.

#6 of 29 OFFLINE   John_Berger

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Posted November 12 2003 - 11:54 AM

[quote] Is there anything special about the two Sunday collections (Lazy Sunday and Sunday Strips 1985-1995) that would make them required purhases? [quote] Color.

#7 of 29 OFFLINE   Evan Case

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Posted November 12 2003 - 12:34 PM

Thanks for that link, Matthew (I had to fiddle with the url to get it to work, though). It appears that the treasury route is the best way to go to collect the first six years, as you get all of the strips, plus color Sundays, additional little stories, and a cheaper price. All that's really sacrificed is additional cover art, and some forewards/poems, minor drawings. According to the link, the first Sunday book has an additional 10-page Spaceman Spiff story, while the latter compiles Watterson's favorite Sundays with commentary and early sketchwork. Thanks, guys. Evan
"               " - Buster Keaton
S&S (1992 & 2002), The 1930s : Finished! S&S Club : 311 seen (Recent: Bigger Than Life)
AFI Challenge Stars: 36 left, Songs: 11 left, Passions: 2 left, Cheers: 4 left, Quotes: 2 left, Top Tens: 1 left; (Most Recent: Camille [Passions, Stars]) 

#8 of 29 OFFLINE   Evan Case

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Posted November 12 2003 - 12:53 PM

For all those still interested, this is taken directly from the owner of the huge C&H fan site Matthew linked:
Evan
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S&S (1992 & 2002), The 1930s : Finished! S&S Club : 311 seen (Recent: Bigger Than Life)
AFI Challenge Stars: 36 left, Songs: 11 left, Passions: 2 left, Cheers: 4 left, Quotes: 2 left, Top Tens: 1 left; (Most Recent: Camille [Passions, Stars]) 

#9 of 29 OFFLINE   Matthew Watson

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Posted November 12 2003 - 01:07 PM

[quote] Thanks for that link, Matthew (I had to fiddle with the url to get it to work, though). [quote]

Dang URLs, anyway.

You're welcome, Evan.

Wouldn't it be great if Bill Watterson put out a C&H book a year? Sort of the stuff he was doing in the paperback collections where he did comic book or picture book style stories? Sure do dig (and miss) that strip.

#10 of 29 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted November 12 2003 - 03:57 PM

I miss the strip, too. I wasn't aware of the web site; nice to have a comprehensive list that will let me get all the strips. (I have a couple of C&H books but there is significant overlap among the strips included.)

My two cats are named "Calvin" and "Hobbes". (But nobody ever manages to spell "Hobbes" correctly. Posted Image )

Regards,

Joe

#11 of 29 OFFLINE   Chuck Mayer

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Posted November 13 2003 - 01:11 AM

These strips were probably the single most brilliant use of the medium in recent decades. I really treasured the collections I bought, and the new strip. It's final Sunday was bittersweet Posted Image

I'd love to see some strips in a museum...sometime soon, I hope.

I'd love to see something similar to the recent Far Side collection.

Instant buy,
Chuck
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#12 of 29 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted November 13 2003 - 04:37 AM

[quote] These strips were probably the single most brilliant use of the medium in recent decades. [quote]

Taken as pure art, they are brilliant, including the philosophical musings. But I do see a lot of pathos in the Calvin character. Here's a kid who has absolutely NO friends (he is NEVER shown interacting with ANY other boys other than the schoolyard bully). He's completely isolated himself from everyone. His behavior, when observed from an objective external viewpoint, is strange. At the current C&H website, he's shown mailing insults to himself (his mother sees evidence of this).

#13 of 29 OFFLINE   Evan Case

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Posted November 13 2003 - 06:19 AM


Much Madness is divinest sense--
To a discerning Eye--
Much Sense--the starkest Madness--
'Tis the Majority
In this, as All, prevail--
Assent--and you are sane--
Demur--you're straightaway dangerous--
And handled with a Chain


- Emily Dickinson

Evan

(Ok, maybe having a talking stuffed tiger at age six hints at a little bit of social awkwardness. Posted Image)
"               " - Buster Keaton
S&S (1992 & 2002), The 1930s : Finished! S&S Club : 311 seen (Recent: Bigger Than Life)
AFI Challenge Stars: 36 left, Songs: 11 left, Passions: 2 left, Cheers: 4 left, Quotes: 2 left, Top Tens: 1 left; (Most Recent: Camille [Passions, Stars]) 

#14 of 29 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted November 13 2003 - 07:56 AM

[quote] At the current C&H website, he's shown mailing insults to himself (his mother sees evidence of this). [quote]

No, no, Hobbes is mailing them to Calvin. Posted Image

And Calvin is certainly seen interacting with Susy, and sometimes with other kids at the school. He even goes to birthday parties.

One of the lovely things about the strip is that the author never answers questions like "is Hobbes real?" or "exactly how much of this takes place strictly in Calvin's imagination"

In fact the strip floats easily on the borderline between reality and fantasy, and never comes down completely on either side. The recurring scenes where Hobbes ambushes Calvin at the end of the school day really make no sense if Hobbes is just a stuffed animal manipulated by the child. Neither do things like Hobbes munching on Calvin's forgotten lunch after the school bus pulls away. The stip isn't realistic, or even strictly fantastic. It is surrealistic. Posted Image

The one thing you cannot be with this strip is literal. The illusion of the stip is bubble-like - beautiful, fragile, but just fine if you leave it alone. The moment you go poking at it with logic it disappears with a *pop*!

Regards,

Joe

#15 of 29 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted November 13 2003 - 08:26 AM

[quote] the author never answers questions like "is Hobbes real?" [quote]

Actually, I think he does. Note that whenever Calvin, someone else, and Hobbes are shown in the same panel (in short, an objective viewpoint), Hobbes is always shown as nothing more than a stuffed tiger. It's positively amazing what conversations the kid has with himself.

#16 of 29 OFFLINE   Keith Mickunas

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Posted November 13 2003 - 08:37 AM

But Calvin & Hobbes often get into situations that Calvin could not get into himself without Hobbes' help. How can you explain that if Hobbes is just a stuffed tiger? Bill Watterson said in one of his books that one reason he has never allowed any licensing of his characters is that it might define Hobbes as being real or not. If I recall correctly he specificly sited not allowing stuffed toys of Hobbes to be made because than Hobbes would be a stuffed toy. I'm pretty sure Watterson even said that he doesn't know if Hobbes is real or not. I believe that was all written in the 10th anniversary book. He also explained a bit about why there are so few other characters. He regretted having added the uncle in a few strips because that defined the parents more. The whole comic is very much devoted to Calvin and how he sees and interacts with the world around him. That's part of why there are so few other characters and so little depth where they are involved.

#17 of 29 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted November 13 2003 - 09:40 AM

[quote] But Calvin & Hobbes often get into situations that Calvin could not get into himself without Hobbes' help. [quote]

Can you give an example? I see Calvin looking messy, etc. (or at least Calvin imagining he's messy), but I can't recall seeing Calvin in a state that his parents or other people objectively see him in that would be physically impossible for him to cause himself.

#18 of 29 OFFLINE   Ralph_G

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Posted November 13 2003 - 09:59 AM

[quote] The so-called "gimmick" of my strip--the two versions of Hobbes--is sometimes misunderstood. I don't think of Hobbes as a doll that miraculously comes to life when Calvin's around. Niether do I think of Hobbes as the product of Calvin's imagination. The nature of Hobbes reality doesn't interest me, and each story goes out of its way to avoid resolving the issue. Calvin sees Hobbes one way, and everyone else sees Hobbes another way. I show two versions of reality, and each makes complete sense to the participant who sees it. I think that's how life works. None of us sees the world in exactly the same way, and I just draw that literally in the strip. Hobbes is more about the subjective nature of reality that about dolls coming to life. [quote]

#19 of 29 OFFLINE   Keith Mickunas

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Posted November 13 2003 - 10:55 AM

There have been specific strips in which Calvin has climbed trees in which he'd need Hobbes to boost him up there. In one he was hanging from the branch after Hobbes lifted him up, then Hobbes took off Calvin's shoes. Sure, you could analyze each strip and theorize how Calvin did it himself. However as it's been shown, Watterson doesn't view it one way or another. So regardless of how we can explain it, it's moot. It's Watterson's world, and what he says goes.

#20 of 29 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted November 13 2003 - 11:08 AM

[quote] There have been specific strips in which Calvin has climbed trees in which he'd need Hobbes to boost him up there. In one he was hanging from the branch after Hobbes lifted him up, then Hobbes took off Calvin's shoes. [quote]

But were these things shown to have actually happened (ie were his parents shown seeing that it happened), or were they shown in the "C&H" world, where ANYTHING happens? BTW, six year olds can climb trees. Posted Image




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