Wednesday, August 26, 2009

October 2, 1951: Year 2


He doesn't get that the adult piano is so big Schroeder's tiny arms couldn't possibly stretch to the end of the keyboard from his seat?

This strip marks the beginning of Peanuts' second year of publication. During that time:

The characters of Charlie Brown, Shermy, Patty, Snoopy, Violet and Schroeder were introduced, and all are still in rotation, although sights of Shermy are already kind of infrequent.  We've also seen an anonymous bird (chased by Snoopy) and an unknown dog (seen chasing a car).  We've heard Charlie Brown talk about his dad, and characters have also with an unseen druggist.

Charlie Brown's already begun to settle into his eternally-pessimistic personality.  Patty is his main antagonist, and sometimes shows signs of malevolence, but not quite up to Lucy's later volcanic standards.  Violet is more girlish in general.  Shermy's pretty much a non-entity.  Snoopy is very doglike, although he sometimes gains human attributes when it suits a joke.  Schroeder was first the strip baby, but very soon became the strip musician, although he's still obviously younger than the other characters.

We've seen a fence a couple of times that CB's seen things drawn on, and he's drawn on it himself.  The characters have spoken of school, but no school scenes have appeared yet.  

Let's have another look at the first strip for comparison purposes:


Eye ovals have become thicker, characters are overall cuter, heads (except for Charlie Brown's) are less ovoid, and, although it's hard to tell with Schroeder's still ill-defined hair, its shape plays a bigger role in defining a character's head.

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