Thursday, March 25, 2010

August 1, 1952: Snoopy wants to play


This is a cute little strip, cute enough to overcome my usual aversion to sports jokes. Poor ol' Charlie Brown. But then, I'm pretty sure dogs aren't allowed on golf courses, so doesn't CB only have himself to blame? It is in dogs' nature to fetch. To bring Snoopy onto a golf course is to invite disaster.

The last panel gives us one of the earliest examples of Charlie Brown exhibiting dismay. "I can't stand it" is one of Charlie Brown's unofficial mottoes, along with "Good grief!" and "Rats!"


  1. There's also a pretty sophisticated contrast he sets up here:
    P1, Charlie's happy
    P2, unforseen event takes happiness from him!
    P3, Snoopy's happy and Charlie's pretending to be happy for Snoopy's benefit (which is a nice character moment -- he doesn't tell Snoopy not to fetch golf balls, or to get off the course, but feigns happiness)
    P4, Charlie later vents not about Snoopy but about himself and his non-specific frustration. Meanwhile, Snoopy's confused.

    Just contrast this with.. I don't know, pick a Snuffy Smith, where it's
    P1: setup
    P2: setup
    P3: punch line, usually showing other people in panel laughing

    Schultz gets an amazing amount of emotional content into those four panels.

  2. John, I thought you'd appreciate this Peanuts illustration, which you can apparently buy as a shirt.

    It really says a lot about Schultz's craft that his iconic character designs come through with so few visual markers...

  3. I'm pretty sure dogs aren't allowed on golf courses ...

    ... as opposed to unattended five-year-olds?

    Gnats and camels, man!