Sunday, October 12, 2014

Geekdom Madness: Quarter-Final - Childhood Dreams

Welcome to the last Quarter-Final. After this week, we'll have our "Elite Four" for the Semi-Final, but this one will be a toughie.

Welcome Back:


I picked Jack Skellington for this competition because The Nightmare Before Christmas is one of my favorite movies, and Jack is one of Tim Burton's most recognizable creations (the other being Edward Scissorhands, who was my personal preference on a character level), and one of the most enduring and popular across several fanbases.

Really, for a Tim Burton-themed section, I could have picked any two, since Tim loves variations on his Isolated Outsider archetype - which is why his work speaks to many counterculture youth. I was 13 when I started getting into Burton's work full-speed, and definitely felt that isolation. But Nightmare I had loved since well before for its music and story, and Jack has become an icon of my childhood.


I picked Calvin and Hobbes for this competition because of the enormous and overwhelming influence the classic strip had on my sense of humor, writing style, understanding of vocabulary, artistic style, and really my entire way of thinking. While I was never particularly a troublemaker, I've always been very much like Calvin in regards to my very thin barrier between fantasy and reality and my inability the reconcile my own ideals with the way society works.

I've always leaned more on the side of "Hobbes is Real" in that classic debate (though I love Watterson's point about "Subjective Reality"), but I realized that you can't separate the pair in a competition like this. Interestingly, I had considered a number of other "team" candidates for this year's tournement, of whom only this one made it through.

Final Thoughts
Jack is far more in the public eye because Disney likes to include him in a lot of crossovers, but C&H have been utter juggernauts in this competition because of the impact they left during the strip's brief run.

As always, make sure you're viewing the WEB version of the site and vote in the poll on the right-hand side of the screen. Poll closes Friday and results posted on Saturday. Feel free to discuss your pick in the comments below.


  1. The fact that Calvin and Hobbes didn't run for that long makes me sad. -_- And as much as there would have been a good animated series/special, Bill Watterson was against it, for a good reason. He didn't want merchandisers to make it a cash cow franchise deviating it from it's original charm/meaning.

    Say, did you know that there's a fanfic series called "Calvin and Hobbes: The Animated Series?" It's on TV Tropes for more information.

    1. I grew disillusioned with general fan-fiction a while back, even though I dabbled myself until fairly recently.

    2. I dunno, C&H ran for a full decade. That's pretty decent, and you do get a sense of Watterson wrapping things up creatively by the time it finished.

      We're so used to comics running way past their prime for 20, 30 years or whatever, but the fact that C&H got in, made its difference, and then got out once Watterson felt he had done what he needed is I think one of the strongest things about it.

    3. I see both sides. As an artist, I sympathize with Watterson and feel he made the right decisions artistically. As a fan and consumer, I want so much more and am still upset with not getting my Hobbes doll.

  2. It sounds like something a good adaptation would be, but YMMV. I'd check it out.