Robot 6

Is Bill Watterson drawing this week’s ‘Pearls Before Swine’?

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On Monday, cartoonist Stephan Pastis kicked off a new Pearls Before Swine arc by teasing that this week’s strips “will contain a mind-blowing surprise.” That tantalizing tweet, coupled with artwork in a decidedly different style and a couple of potential dialogues, led some readers to speculate that parts of the storyline are drawn by none other than Calvin and Hobbes creator Bill Watterson.

At The Daily Cartoonist, Alan Gardner lays out some of the evidence, both for and against, and rounds up some of the Twitter chatter on the subject. He acknowledges, “I’m not fully convinced that it is Bill.”

The famously reclusive Watterson has released just two pieces of new artwork since ending Calvin and Hobbes in 1995: a painting of Richard Thompson’s character Petey Otterloop, created in 2011 for the Team Cul de Sac benefit auction (it sold for $13,000), and the poster for the recent comic strip documentary Stripped.

An exhibit of original strips and specialty pieces by Watterson and Thompson opened in at the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum at the Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio.

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Comments

7 Comments

cheech wizard

June 5, 2014 at 1:28 pm

It’s clearly Watterson. Look at the lettering, particularly the way the E and H are made with a horizontal bar noticeably below the midpoint. Exactly like Watterson. The postures of Pig and Rat in the first panel today, and Rat’s in the second panel are almost exactly like Calvin and Hobbes.

Pensacola Pop Comics

June 5, 2014 at 3:49 pm

If it’s not Watterson, then someone did a great job paying homage to his style.

Agreed on that point! It does remind me of Watterson…

I so want to believe this, but I don’t see any Watterson in the Friday strip.

I think Tom Richmond drew the center panel for Friday’s strip.

I would have believed it was Watterson based on the first strip, but that croc one doesn’t look right to me.

(The text isn’t a convincer, because anyone these days could sample pre-existing Watterson text and repurpose it or trace it.)

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