The idea for this strip, I’m sorry to say, came about in a completely pedestrian way. I wish I could tell you I thought of it while actually BUILDING an octopus detector, but I didn’t. …It’s close but not quite there. — Mrs. Jim and I were driving in the car and she was trying to sell me on the idea of taking an exotic adventure on a very high-end cruise ship. To help sweeten the sale she began to rattle off a number of wonderful features about the ship, one of which included “radar.” Needless to say, while I do like gizmos I followed by saying “…Who cares if they have radar. It’s not like the have an octopus detector.” At which point I chuckled, made a quick mental note, and realized that was the most brilliant thing I’d said in about 9 days. The term “octopus detector,” in my opinion, is insanely hilarious and that’s how this strip was born.
For long-time fans of “Watson,” I can tell you that the same “energy” I experienced when I came up with the idea for this strip is exactly like the “strange energy” I felt when I came up with the Super-Chicken strip. At the time it seemed so awful that no one would like it, but I now realize that feeling may actually indicate I’ve hit the jackpot. – It’s a concept that feels totally free and floating, so bizarre that it doesn’t associate itself with anything common one might normally grasp. It’s, in plain terms, just “completely out there.” These are the kids of strips that separate true “Watsoneers” from all the rest. If I’ve still got you at “octopus detector,” then my strip is truly just for you.