Brian Kesinger, an artist at Disney and Marvel, caused a sensation on the internet last month with his mashup of Calvin And Hobbes and The Force Awakens, evoking the whimsical art style of Bill Watterson and depicting the fearsome and violent Kylo Ren as an adorable, rambunctious grade schooler, with Han and Leia as his cutely exasperated parents and the mysterious Darth Vader as his Hobbes-like imaginary friend and co-conspirator. Kesinger obviously touched a nerve with these “Kylo And Darth” cartoons, and he has continued to post new images in the series to his Instagram account. One recent posting, for instance, depicts Rey as Susie Derkins, who has no luck in interesting Kylo/Calvin in her BB-8 toy.
One really sweet recent panel depicts Leia tucking her young son in bed and dutifully kissing a Darth Vader doll in the process. Considering that Vader is Leia’s father and Kylo’s grandfather, not to mention that he was killed by Leia’s brother, this scene is as weird as it is heartwarming.
Bath time, too, presents its own special challenges to parents, especially when their children are endowed with Jedi magic powers.
Kesinger’s drawings go a long way toward humanizing the supposed “bad guys” of the Star Wars universe. Even something as formidable and terrifying as the Starkiller Base becomes a mere flight of fancy in these cartoons, depicted as nothing more than a tree fort defended by pirates wearing folded-up newspapers for hats. Nothing evil to be found here at all, just some good old fashioned childhood playacting.