Sunday, December 25, 2005

“Tigers Wreck the Grade Curve.”

I never expected to get it for Christmas or anything else. Honestly, I never expected to ever see a copy.

But I am now the proud owner of The Complete Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson. Spanning approximately 3 volumes, 1500 pages, and 10 years, it weighs in at 23 pounds (lb) and sports a retail value of 150 dollars.

The large heavy-cardboard slip-case is bound in brown cloth, with smooth autumnal-toned paper carefully pasted on the two sides. Over each of these a small, window-like full-color of the duo is affixed, bookending the joy.
The weighty volumes are done up in the same manner: brown cloth, dull orange paper, and on each side just a peek at the art within. Gold embossing proclaims the title and volume number from the spine. Two sheets of white paper sheath the books, protecting them from abrasions in their communal crating.
These hefty bindings feel worthy of the manuscripts of John Calvin and Thomas Hobbes. And while Bill Watterson’s Calvin and Hobbes may not be so historically substantial as philosophers remembered through hundreds of years, the packaging is well-suited to what it accommodates.

It’s no secret the high esteem in which I hold this comic strip, so I guess I won’t broadcast it’s details again… (Want some of those details? Check here.) So instead I’ll just iterate briefly the pleasure I am having going over the glossy pages, reading both the black-ink daily four-panels and the full-color Sabbatical page-sizeds.
I’m not yet through the first year and am trying not to swallow it all at one bite. While that first year is familiar territory (though it is ground I haven’t been on for some years), I am also confident that around at least half of what is in this set will be completely new to me. No matter, as rereading is no small amount of fun itself.

I probably said this before: If you have never read Calvin and Hobbes, rectify this immediately! If you have experienced the trance brought on by these magnificent characters, I know what’s bugging you right now. Envy. So:

Want yours? Too late, the first batch is gone!
…but watch carefully for the reprint, coming April, 2006.

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