'"You really need professional help."
Susie, To Calvin, after she finds a single snowman head on her front step.
|First appearance:||December 5, 1985|
|Last appearance:||December 16, 1995|
Susan "Susie" Derkins is a girl who lives in Calvin's neighborhood. She is his well-known neighbor and the only major character to have both a given name and a family name. Susie takes her studies seriously and doesn't slack off on her homework like Calvin does. She also takes piano lessons.
Susie believes it isn't a surprise no one has sold a house on their block for 6 years. She is often pelted by Calvin with various objects, including buckeyes, water balloons, and once a bowling ball-sized snowball.
Calvin once revealed that Susie eats each ingredient of her sandwich separately.
Her mother must be friends, or at least cordial, with Calvin's mother because she allowed Susie to stay with them when she could not pick her up. And she called Calvin's Mom when Calvin dropped a huge snowball on Susie as Stupendous Man.
Oddly, though she treats school seriously, she once attempted to cheat on a test question. She asked Calvin what the capital of Poland was until 1600. Calvin responded Krakow. Susie said thanks. But it was revealed Calvin said "Krakow!, Krakow! 2 direct hits!" as Spaceman Spiff. Ironically, that was the correct answer.
In the winter time, Susie also builds snowmen, although they are generic and not as unusual as Calvin's.
While Susie often ignores Calvin entirely, she is attracted to Hobbes. She often hugs Hobbes or comments on how he is cute (to Hobbes' delight and Calvin's disgust). Although Hobbes does not return the love physically (as he is only a stuffed tiger to her), Susie often becomes the topic of conversation while talking with Calvin. He also wears ties and things for her, and Calvin yells at him for not mauling her when he has the chance.
She has a stuffed animal of her own, a rabbit named Mr. Bun. It may be implied that this is Susie's version of Hobbes, though it has never been seen in any living form. Susie seems to love Hobbes (especially when he is wearing jams), often asking to squeeze him, but then gets mad when Calvin will play with his "dumb ol' tiger" but not with Mr. Bun. Hobbes once remarked that Mr. Bun seemed comatose.
Susie reluctantly sits by Calvin during lunchtime at school, but Calvin always decides to sit next to her anyway. In many situations, Calvin would talk about his lunch, portraying it as something disgusting and unappetizing, such as naming his sandwiches revolting things. (An example would be when he told Susie that he mashed some flies into a paste onto 2 pieces of bread, and called it bug butter.) Susie often tells on Calvin for being so revolting by shouting "MISS WORMWOOD!!!". Also Susie once told Calvin that her favorite sandwich was Swiss cheese and ketchup. Or the time he asked her the difference between a slug and a two-inch-long living booger she shrieked and ran away.
The love/hate relationship expanded over the years. In one Valentine's Day strip, Susie angrily pelted Calvin with a snowball after receiving his Valentine's gift (a hate-mail and a bunch of dead flowers), but in the same strip walked away, thinking, "He likes me!" inwardly rejoicing at the gift, as Calvin thought the same. Another time, they were mercilessly insulting each other, before Calvin said to the reader, "It's shameless the way we flirt." Calvin once compared them to Tarzan and Jane when Susie points out his underwear while he is pretending to be Tarzan, stating that "I don't think Jane ever said that to Tarzan." In one strip Susie blackmails Calvin into saying that he missed the "melodic sound of her voice" when he calls her about homework, implying she is more willing to admit her feelings about Calvin than he is.
However, the two never show any love. Susie is instead the target of several of Calvin's pranks, while Susie just tries to be friends. She can often persuade Calvin to play "house" or play with her.
Sometimes, though, Calvin's actions enrage Susie into going as far as beating him up.
It is rumored that the drawing of Susie is actually Bill Watterson's wife as a little girl. Hence, the resemblance between Susie and Calvin's mother who is also said to be patterned after Watterson's wife.
As the only major human playmate Calvin has, Susie factors into many of Calvin's fantasies. In 1991, after Calvin found that he couldn't "throw snowballs when Earth's gravity has increased" (Hobbes also remarked that the increasing gravity explained why Calvin spilled his breakfast down the heater), the situation warranted the intervention of Stupendous Man, who flew into the air and hit his archenemy, Annoying Girl, with a snowball the size of Susie's head.
Susie appeared in two more Stupendous Man stories, in 1992 and 1993, but only as Susie Derkins, innocent bystander. Apparently, Annoying Girl never recovered from being the only foe Stupendous Man vanquished. Sometimes, an antagonist appears only once -- for one battle.