Housepets! is a thrice-weekly Web comic produced by Rick Griffin. The story revolves around Peanut Butter and Grape Jelly Sandwich and other pets living in Babylon Gardens, a pet-friendly neighborhood.
History and DevelopmentEdit
Housepets! is based on a series of comics Griffin drew in his childhood, Bino, with the title character becoming an antagonist in the new comic.
In 2007 Rick Griffin started working on a new webcomic, based on his old Bino comics. By the time of 2008 the comic was on the web, and Housepets! was alive.
The primary setting of Housepets! is Babylon Gardens, a suburban neighborhood somewhere within the United States (the strip itself does not specify the exact location of Babylon Gardens, although Griffin states that the Sandwich house was based upon a former residence of his in North Carolina). In the Housepets! universe, most animals are sentient. Mammals with paws are fully anthropomorphized, able to speak and walk upright; mammals with hooves (and all other animals) are non-morphic, but retain the capacity for speech. Pets live twice their normal lifespan. Animals also enjoy certain rights (for example, a police dog can arrest humans, complete with a fictional legal precedent cited), but wild animals not kept as pets have no legal status. Most pets are regarded much like surrogate children, referring to their owners as "Mom" and "Dad" as well as adopting their surnames, and may be kept by humans who opt not to have children of their own. Also, the intoxicating properties of orange soda are exaggerated. The action of the comic revolves around the lives of the various pets living in Babylon Gardens, although many strips focus specifically upon Peanut Butter and Grape Jelly, pets of the Sandwich family. Most strips adopt a "slice of life" approach, depicting pets dealing with common problems such as coping with boredom, visiting the vet, and interacting with other pets in the neighborhood. Translation projects are highly active for Portugese, French, Italian, German, and Simplified and Traditional Chinese. Other translation projects, including Japanese, Spanish, Hebrew, Swedish, Dutch, Danish and Arabic, are in the works. In addition, some novelty translations, including lolspeak, Olde English, Musical, Advertising, and "Real" (all animal lines replaced with animal sound onomatopoeias) have been undertaken. There is also an unofficial-but-sanctioned project, the Refur Project, to color the original black-and-white comics that were drawn prior to Christmas 2008. In addition to adding color effective Christmas 2008, the style of the comic was changed in March 2009 to closer reflect Rick's typical drawing style. The style was changed again in 2012, bringing it yet closer to Rick's typical drawing style, and also making some cosmetic changes to some of the characters. The comic's style continues to change as grow as it continues.