In the very first strip we see: enter image description here

Which implies Calvin got Hobbes when he was 6. As this is the first strip, it is quite clear this is intended to be an origin story.

However, in this August 1st, 1989, strip, we see: enter image description here

Which implies Calvin has had him since he was a little kid. When exactly did Calvin get Hobbes? Is there another strip or interview with Bill Watterson that clears things up?

  • 6
    Remember Dr. House's first rule. Everybody (and every tiger) lies.
    – Valorum
    Oct 5, 2019 at 21:34
  • 13
    There is another comic that implies Hobbes is a family heirloom.
    – Buzz
    Oct 5, 2019 at 21:36
  • 2
    what Buzz said. Hobbes belonged to one of the parents (I can't recall which at the moment)
    – NKCampbell
    Oct 5, 2019 at 22:10
  • 8
    Downvoted. The first strip only implies that Calvin has set up a trap to catch a tiger.
    – motoDrizzt
    Oct 6, 2019 at 7:25
  • 3
    @motoDrizzt Since it's the very first strip, I think it's clear to imply that's how he got it.
    – TheAsh
    Oct 6, 2019 at 12:07

2 Answers 2


According to the Calvin and Hobbes wiki, when Watterson made the first strip, he had intended it as an explanation for where Hobbes came from, but in the Tenth Anniversary Book, he wrote that he had changed his mind at some point on Hobbes' origin, instead preferring it to be unexplained as he felt any explanation was "unnecessary and detrimental to the feel of the strip." Therefore later strips implied that Hobbes had always been around.

  • 2
    Can you provide a direct quote?
    – Valorum
    Oct 6, 2019 at 16:15
  • Unfortunately, no, I don't have that book, so I'm relying on the information on the wiki.
    – Kai
    Oct 7, 2019 at 4:12
  • 2
    A quick glance at the page they seem to be referring to would suggest that this quote isn't entirely accurate
    – Valorum
    Oct 7, 2019 at 7:36

To add to the answer above, in the Tenth Anniversary Book, page 29, which shows the very first strip, the comment by Bill Watterson says

This was the first Calvin and Hobbes strip, published November 18, 1985. At the time, I thought it was important to establish how Calvin and Hobbes got together, but now I think was unnecessary.

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