Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

June 9, 2014

Two General Updates On Bill Watterson Doing Art For A Run Of Pearls Before Swine Dailies Last Week

Even with the accompaniment of widespread speculation, the legendary and mostly reclusive comics maker Bill Watterson providing creator Stephan Pastis with art for his Pearls Before Swine strip was the surprise story of the last few years. It's the kind of story your nerdiest comics acquaintance and your oldest living relative contacted you to discuss in the last 72 hours.

imageThere were two general areas where the impact most significantly felt. The first was in a boost for newspaper comics generally, Watterson's legacy more specifically, and Stephan Pastis' reputation most definitely. I thought that was ably covered here. Pastis' strip is one of the five every newspaper should be carrying right now, and I'm glad for him to see this kind of outside-interest boost in what it is he does.

The second is what's to become of the work. The art will be displayed at Heroes Con, and then auctioned off through the help and encouragement of the Team Cul De Sac folks in order to benefit their Parkinson's-releated charity of choice, the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Disease research. This was apparently the primary shaper of this impulse for Watterson to work with Pastis. I asked Team Cul De Sac's Chris Sparks if what was to be on display and auctioned off was going to be originals with both artists having worked on them -- in his introduction to the material, Pastis at first wanted to work with scans rather than have anything to do with the pressure of working with Watterson's originals. He told CR that was his belief, yes.

Watterson has been a staunch support of Team Cul De Sac and its central light, the cartoonist Richard Thompson, who suspended his strip of that name because of his own Parkinson's-related difficulties. I hope this brings in a lot of money, and attention to both the cause and the good folks involved in fighting for it.

You can always learn more by going to the Team Cul De Sac site.
posted 8:45 am PST | Permalink

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