Saturday, November 27, 2010

Charlie Brown

"Peanuts" was the most popular comic-strip of all time.

It spoke to everyone.  Young and old, liberal and conservative, everyone could identify with the beleaguered Charlie Brown, or the insouciant Lucy, or the befuddled Linus.  And, of course, everyone loved Snoopy, the hipster-dog.

"Peanuts" also had simple plots that were common human dramas.  We could all relate to them, including in our youth.

I just started reading the acclaimed biography of Charles Schulz, the creator of "Peanuts."  The book is surprising -- it explains how, for a comic as popular and cheerful as this one, its maker was equally as private and unhappy.  Schulz had demons and never found his way to true happiness.

Did you ever read this comic?  Did you like it?  Did you identify with any of the characters?

I once dressed up for Halloween as Charlie Brown and, throughout my childhood, I drew pictures of Snoopy on all my schoolbooks.


  1. I was totally watching the Charlie Brown specials on TV last night. The voicework is fantastic. The kids all sound so flat, but emotive simultaneously.

  2. My dog growing up was a beagle, and I actually named him Snoopy because I loved Peanuts so much!

  3. That is very sad about Charles Schulz. I would have never known. I wonder if Charlie Brown is supposed to be him ? Charlie seems kind of sad most of the time.

  4. That would be an interesting biography to read. I always watched the shows during the holidays: Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas. It was one of our traditions. I wonder the same thing as Miss Emma Kitty... is Charlie Brown supposed to be Mr. Schulz?

  5. Yes, Schulz modeled Charlie Brown on himself.

  6. I have always loved Peanuts. My daughter and I always look forward to watching each holiday movie together.

    In a way, i guess i am not surprised to hear that CS "was" Charlie Brown. It explains how was able to be so adept at diving in to the meat of some of the issues he covered in so few words.

    I absolutely rank the Peanuts' Christmas up there as my favorite cartoon, followed by the Grinch. They are both stories of soul searching, looking for meaning and ultimately redemption. The message is complex and beautiful, even though the vehicle was simple.

  7. I, like many people, am a Peanuts fan. The whole gang was so endearing. I still love watching the movies when they come on TV and reading the old comic strips. My brother always reminded me of Linus and Pig-Pen... He carried his blankie with him everywhere when he was little, but became a messy dirty sort when he got a little older. Thankfully, both the blankie and the cloud of dirt around him have disappeared with age. I also laugh every time I see Snoopy. I can only think of my mom's horror stories about her first roommate in college who happened to be weirdly obsessed with Snoopy. (My mom transfered roommates after only one semester with her. Ha!)

    For me though, I'd say I'm a lot like Lucy externally and probably a mixture of Linus and Charlie Brown internally.

    I'm laughing at myself for making this sound complex... But really the Peanuts comics are in a way. Plain on the outside but with deeper meanings and themes under the surface... Much like people. I suppose that's why most like it and relate to it.

  8. Thanks, Meg, for sharing. I grasp and appreciate what you wrote.

  9. How interesting,..
    I loved Snoopy and believe it or not my second favorite character was the mumbling teacher: wawawawawa....

  10. Happiness is a Warm Puppy.

    That is my boyfriends and my motto for life :)

    I didn't know about the biography, I may have to get it for Kevin for christmas, he is sooo enamored with peanuts, and whenever there are people dressed up as snoopy he has to get a picture with them... haha!