The Calvin and Hobbes guide to crisis PR

The beloved comic strip characters had a lot to say on the topic, particularly Calvin.

Ragan Insider Premium Content
Ragan Insider Content

Two weeks ago I spent the morning sifting through quotes from a favorite character of my childhood. The resulting blog post, Winnie the Pooh on…Social Media, was so much fun to create that I decided to take a look back on another publication that provided me with wisdom during my youth, “Calvin and Hobbes.”

It seems young Calvin was always in crisis mode while Hobbes fanned the flames to watch the meltdown. The mistakes of these two characters contain valuable lessons for anyone facing a media crisis. After all, can’t we all sympathize with a child that so succinctly states what we all think when a crisis occurs: “Reality continues to ruin my life.”

Here are a few more bits of crisis wisdom penned by Bill Watterson and applied to crisis communications:

On ignoring the crisis

“What state do you live in?”


On setting expectations

“To make a bad day worse, spend it wishing for the impossible.”

On luck

“You know, Hobbes, some days even my lucky rocket ship underpants don’t help.”

On pity

To read the full story, log in.
Become a Ragan Insider member to read this article and all other archived content.
Sign up today

Already a member? Log in here.
Learn more about Ragan Insider.