Monday, October 31, 2011

The Greatest Peanuts Comic Strips

As I read through the Fantagraphics collections of the Peanuts comic strips, I am often struck by just how perfectly written some of the strips are.  Schulz can break your heart with just one panel, and with another show the quiet humanity and pricelessness of family or friendship.  I've looked for just those strips to share, but have had little luck. 

Specifically, I wanted the October 11, 1980 strip which closes a story arc where Snoopy has been trying to figure out what exact kind bird Woodstock is and, in the end, suggests that maybe Woodstock is a duck.  When Woodstock is distraught at Snoopy's bad joke, the final panel is this perfect touching moment of reconciliation and friendship.  I could never find the strip online. 

Today, I ran into another.

I found this one.  It speaks volumes.  Still couldn't find the Snoopy / Woodstock strip.

I also ran across a series of blog posts from one Trapper Jenn, MD listing out what she feels the 50 greatest Peanuts strips are.  She has good taste, though she doesn't count that Snoopy / Woodstock strip as one of them.

Regardless, I want to share her list.  And her commentary.

The Honor Bag



Carl V. Anderson said...

I've been slowly working my way through the lovely Fantagraphics collections. I usually get one or two a year for gifts. I grew up a fan of Peanuts and that love has never grown cold. You are so right in saying that Schulz had a knack for being able to break your heart with just one panel. In the very best of these there is so much emotion and more depth than one would think could come from a 'comic strip'. I was just looking at the latest one I got a few days ago thinking that it was high time I get to reading it.

Joe said...

I've been grabbing them from the library as they get them, but one day I'll spend a good deal of money and collect the full set. I'd have been better off starting that collection years ago, but I'll be okay.

Peanuts is eternal.

Carl V. Anderson said...

It really is. I was so happy when they announced they were doing these collections, two a year, several years back. I had intended to get them as they came out but that isn't always financially possible. Still, its nice to get them every so often.