Mmmmmm, beautifully expressed, Dave. It’s hard sometimes to return to the relationship brokered long ago with a series of books, especially when the global franchise business has ground into gear and stolen something that was once intimate and a marvellous discovery.

I loved it when Bill Watterson turned his back on all franchise deals for Calvin and Hobbes, leaving only the work itself for us to enjoy. I loved it too that he spoke out about such matters, and made eloquent arguments and stuck to his guns. His is a pretty lone voice of course, but I’m in awe that he didn’t crumble. I despise the impositions that swamp an original creative work when the merchandisers get working. I hate Disney’s re-rendering of Pooh, and the fact that Beatrix Potter has been re-drawn for the very young, to ‘reinvigorate’ what was already perfect. Somebody always seems to think they can improve things, and then knock all the life out of them.