Thursday, December 1, 2011

Sunday, February 27, 1955: Phooey to you, Beethoven

This is one of my favorite Peanuts strips of all time.  I actually didn't know that it showed up so early in Peanuts' run; I thought it was an early 60s strip.

Lucy is rapidly developing into her full horrific powers.  She just smashed up Schroeder's bust with a <i>baseball bat</i> in his <i>own house</i>.  And yet, Schroeder was fully prepared for it.  Wow.  And Lucy still hasn't really had many strips in which she's been infatuated with Schroeder -- in fact, I think this strip does a lot to solidify that crush as strip "canon."

It's interesting to note the contrast between Lucy's anger, violence and triumph to Schroeder's plain-faced endurance.  The kid doesn't break expression the whole strip, except in panel 8, which is quite a weird look for the kid indeed.  It's not quite anger and it's not quite sadness.  There is almost something <i>pacifistic</i> about the way Schroeder handles Lucy here. It's really something.

Oh, and the strip is hilarious too.


  1. they did this as a ViewMaster set of reels, with puppets for the Peanuts. it actually worked well.

  2. I had that set of ViewMaster reels, way back when. The gag also appears in an animated cartoon (one of the early ones).

    Another neat thing about this gag is the fact that Schroeder apparently has a closet dedicated to holding NOTHING BUT busts of Beethoven. Busts in a closet DEVOTED to Beethoven memorabilia, sure, but a whole closet with nothing but busts?! Schroeder must live in a REALLY big house.

  3. This segment was also in the new cartoon that just aired on Thanksgiving --"Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown."