'Calvin and Hobbes' Bill Watterson returns to comics after two decades in 'Pearls Before Swine'

By Kyle Johnson,

Bill Watterson, the creator of the beloved Calvin and Hobbes comic strip, returned to newspapers for the first time in two decades to draw Stephan Pastis'Pearls Before Swine for a week.

Reclusive Watterson drew part of Pastis' comic for a few days in the first week of June, under the guise of a second grade girl named Libby who is shown drawing ideas for the comic. In a blog post, Pastis explained he wanted to meet the cartoonist and was unable to up until he drew a comic referencing Hobbes.

He explained that he then emailed the comic to Watterson and thanked him "for all his great work and the influence he'd had on me." Pastis figured that would be it, but then he actually got a reply noting that Watterson had an idea for Pearls.

He wrote back to Watterson, "I will do whatever you want, including setting my hair on fire" and so Watterson pitched his idea about helping his Pearls persona draw.

Pastis said it wasn't easy, but he was able to keep quiet about Watterson's involvement until after they were done.

According to The Washington Post, once people found out it was Watterson who helped draw during the week, his post on the tale became WordPress' No. 1 blogpost and the comic syndicate website GoComics was straining to keep going with all the sudden traffic.

"People are freaked out, touched, stunned," he explained. "I think it was quite the surprise for people waking up this morning."

image via Twitter from Stephan Pastis

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