Sunday, December 25, 2011

March 14-19, 1955: ALL RIGHT, THAT'S ENOUGH

March 14
Lucy sticks with this fussbudget thing for a good while.  I don't think she ever gets it into her head that her mother wasn't complimenting her.

March 15
Back in the first fussbudget strip, Charlie Brown seemed like he understood that Lucy's mother was complaining when she called her daughter a fussbudget.  It's not as obvious here if Charlie Brown is in on the joke.  He's either forgotten, or he's exceptionally straight-faced in his sarcasm.  It could really be either -- there are other strips in which Peanuts characters say sarcastic things without breaking expression even slightly.  When I saw the fussbudget strips as a kid, I didn't get that the joke was on Lucy.  (And to this day, I'm not sure on the origins of the word, or even how it's said.  Is it really "fuss-bud-jet"?)

March 16
Snoopy seems awfully pleased about his pink collar.  I dunno, it doesn't seem really like a Snoopy sort of color.  

March 17
Schroeder's mania continues.  His Beethoven fixation is slowing being made an object of fun, which culminates, I think, in his carring around signs informing people as to how many shopping days it is until Beethover's birthday.

March 18
Why is Charlie Brown sighing here?  Should that be coming from Schroeder instead?

March 19
I think this is the first time Lucy really, really rags on Charlie Brown, which of course becomes a common event in the strip.  It's a chase strip, but going by the rather silly and idiosyncratic rules I've made up, not really a turnabout strip.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Sunday, March 13, 1955: Charlie Brown's going to regret that "kind of dumb" remark

Read this strip at

Charlie Brown and Schroeder must have like no depth perception.  And that's gotta be a pretty strong wind to support a kite that small.

How does Lucy's intelligence matter to how high she can fly a kite?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

March 7-12, 1955: Candy and bugs

March 7
Snoopy's candy detecting powers at work again.  We've already established that Snoopy has a much longer detection range than this.  Note: both of them are probably inside here.

March 8
I've said it multiple times before but it really should be driven home: chocolate is toxic to dogs.  If we can bring ourselves to overlook that little thing, we can notice that chocolate creams are the default "good" candy of Peanuts.  Come back in two days to find out the default "bad" candy.

I seem to remember Snoopy doing the "mmmm" thing later on, and it annoying people.  I don't have a clear recollection of it though, it could be something else.

March 9
Linus is doing his googy face again.  It still looks funny to me.  I suppose this is the expression he makes when he sucks his thumb, but without his thumb in the way to obscure it.

March 10
Charlie Brown hates coconut.  Apparently, so does Snoopy.  (Their opinions on the issue closely mirror my own.)  In both this strip and March 8, the girl is used entirely as an observer, someone to which Charlie Brown can talk without seeming like he's talking to himself, or directly to the reader.

March 11
Lucy is at that magical time where she can say something that looks like pure glurge, but then turn it around 180 degrees in the last panel.  Charlie Brown exists in this strip to tip off the reader's reaction.  The second panel could be taken straight (it's a lesser reading, but possible), so Schulz put him in there to let us know it's supposed to seem sappy, and so we'll be able to see how loud Lucy is being in the last panel.

That disgusted look on his face in the second panel is not a standard Peanuts expression, I notice.

March 12
Somersault!  Aaugh!  You know, I think this might be Peanuts' very first "Aaugh!"

Bugs are not a part of the balance of Charlie Brown's back.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sunday, March 6, 1955: Modern times demand a modern blanket

A simple but effective Sunday strip.  Linus hasn't yet developed loyalty towards a specific blanket, I note.  Snoopy uses speech bubbles in his recent rhinocerous imagination sequence, so this is not yet indicative that Linus is speaking in full English yet.

Friday, December 2, 2011

February 28-March 5, 1955: Everybody look down, it's all in your mind

February 28
The phrase "Good Ol' Charlie Brown" was used in the very first Peanuts strip, and continues to show up from time to time.  For a long while it shared the lead panel with the title.

March 1
This is the beginning of a sequence in which Charlie Brown pretends to be a spaceman.  I like the retro-look of the helmet, I might have to use that somewhere.

March 2
An often under-noticed problem with wearing glass space helmets on planets with both atmospheres and mischievous little girls.

March 3
One of my favorite things about the spaceman sequence is the straight face Charlie Brown keeps through most of it.  We have another example here of a character looking slightly silly when they look directly up.

March 4
Well, almost all of it.  Charlie Brown takes a lot of guff all because his head is styled a little differently from the others.

March 5
This repeated strip is probably a problem with's archive.

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.