One of the greatest things about comics is that the medium has started to get acknowledged as just that, a medium. Instead of just being seen as a genre of POW BIFF BAM, it’s a literary mode that’s just as valid as poetry, nonfiction, or fictional prose. And in that being acknowledged, it opens up comics acting as a critical mouthpiece just like other so-called “classic” literary works. Bill Watterson’s Calvin and Hobbes served as a unique critical field in comics.
The syndicated daily newspaper strip, which ran from 1985 to 1995 and starred a boy and his tiger, was a groundbreaking piece of art and writing that at times could transcend externally-placed limitations on the medium of comics. It was at that forefront of comics as literature that could be a way to critically look at other stuff. The comic allowed Watterson to give his own take and express his own beliefs on art and philosophy, as well as acting as a way for him to air grievances regarding his constant battles with his syndicate over licensing.