(John) Calvin and (Thomas) Hobbes

The comic strip by Bill Watterson follows the mis-adventures of a six-year old boy named Calvin (named for 16th century theologian John Calvin) and Hobbes, who from Calvin’s point of view is an anthropomorphic tiger, much larger than Calvin and full of independent attitudes and ideas but to others is simply Calvin’s stuffed tiger.

Hobbes is named after the 17th-century philosopher Thomas Hobbes, who held what Watterson describes as “a dim view of human nature.”He feels that animals (and tigers in particular) are superior to humans, showing disdain for human nature, mannerisms, and how mankind destroys their environment.

Hobbes is much more rational and aware of consequences than Calvin, but seldom interferes with Calvin’s troublemaking beyond a few oblique warnings. Hobbes is sarcastic when Calvin is being hypocritical about things he dislikes.


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