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Category >> Peanuts

Rerun Season: An Appreciation
Written by Kristy Valenti | Filed under PeanutsCharles M Schulz 11 Dec 2014 12:50 PM

Intern RJ Casey recently helped index The Complete Peanuts: 1995-1996 (Vol. 23), which inspired him to write this Flog post.

There’s someone who is too heavy for a blimp, too underground for greeting cards, too cool to be afloat on Thanksgiving. There’s someone named Rerun Van Pelt, and he’s the only Peanuts character that matters.

Charles Schulz created Rerun as a throwaway character in the ’70s, good for a couple baby jokes here and there; the youngest Van Pelt was mostly relegated to the background for the better part of two decades. But the background was perfect for Rerun. That’s where he sat and observed all the blunders and gaffes everyone around him made in the daily, cyclical rotation. All the blankets, the bullying, the balls missed, the bad hygiene. These weren’t mistakes Rerun could afford to make, because he was a different sort of character. In the historic run of strips, Rerun was the only character that evolved into a Midwestern agent of change.

Rerun comes from a family of lunatics. At best, his sister Lucy is kind, but only when she’s attempting to manipulate anybody on two feet (this includes dogs). At worst, Lucy’s manic, often violent outbursts usually land Rerun somersaulting in the snow, or with a broken board game cracked over his head. His evangelical conspiracy theorist brother is no better. When Linus tries to teach his kid brother about the Great Pumpkin and convince him to go door to door to spread the good word, Rerun straight-up bails, because he’s not a blind follower to the gourd. Rerun is no hack physiatrist or wet security blanket adherent. He’s his own man—a Peanuts punk to his overalled core.

Rerun had to learn how to ride solo when Charlie Brown, Schroeder, Shermy and the squad didn’t even allow him on the baseball diamond. Not one to be relegated to the bench—especially after he started co-headlining the comic in the ’90s—Rerun takes to basketball, a more physically taxing and mentally demanding sport. Though the ball is about the same size as his body, Rerun’s handle is sick, and he even occasionally sinks a few buckets. Rerun had to adapt to tough times, like his parents not allowing him to own a dog. He didn’t whine or give up. No, he begged, borrowed, and stole until he scammed Snoopy into sending for his brother Spike. When Spike showed up and didn’t fit Rerun’s strict specifications, he sent him right back to the desert.

Although he may not be a Peanuts OG, Rerun Van Pelt is the most intriguing character in the long-running comic strip by far. If you tell me anything different, you might as well be squawking like Miss Othmar, because I’m not hearing it. Rerun won’t mind though. He’s just going to keep evolving, keep discerning, and keep making those basement comics.

Riffing on Peanuts
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under PeanutsmiscellanyCharles M Schulz 4 Dec 2014 12:54 PM
Peanuts
The next Complete Peanuts volume has an introduction unlike any one you have ever seen before. We've had comedians before from Whoopi Goldberg to Patton Oswalt talk about their connection to Schulz, Snoopy and the Gang but never before have we had someone riff on top of a Peanuts comic strip!
 
The comedians behind Rifftrax, Mike Nelson, Bill Corbett and Kevin Murphy are also known for their work in Mystery Science Theater 3000. Mike was a writer and then host of the show, while Corbett and Murphy wrote and provided the amazing voices for the 'bots, Crow and Tom Servo respectively. They riff on four Peanuts strips in the upcoming The Complete Peanuts Vol. 23 (1995-1996)
 
But don't worry, there's also a fantastic words-only introduction written by two of their newer Rifftrax writers, Sean Thomason and Conor Lastowka. Like the kind that makes you laugh 'til you cry. And for anyone attending the Rifftrax LIVE show tonight in Nashville and streaming into theaters across the United States, Fantagraphics a little preview of the riffed comics just for the audience as part of downloadable digital goodies! There's still time to get a time to get a ticket for tonight, check your local theaters here to see who is showing Rifftrax: Santa Claus . And you've got plenty of time to preorder The Complete Peanuts Vol. 23 (1995-1996)
Snoopy TV 
Charles M. Schulz continues reign on NY Times Best Seller list
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under PeanutsCharles M Schulz 2 Dec 2014 11:05 AM
Snoopy's Thanksgiving
The indomitable Charles M. Schulz, aka Sparky, hits home the week after Thanksgiving by having our new Thanksgiving-themed books on the NY Times Best Sellers list. In this humourous collection, Woodstock goes through a variety of masks and outfits to disguise the fact that he is a bird during this poultry-fied food holiday. As for Snoopy, he decides it's time to visit some kin and enjoy a nice holiday with his brother, Spike, or so he thought... Snoopy's Thanksgiving is one of our many Peanuts gift books that fit small hands, big hearts and don't hurt your wallet.
Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking Batter Up Charlie Brown 
Check out Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking (literally fits in a Christmas stocking!) or if you yearn for warm weather and the smell of sweet grass, Batter Up, Charlie Brown! might be for you. There's also the upcoming A Valentine for Charlie Brown to look out for and of course, everyone's favorite holiday: Waiting for the Great Pumpkin which is good anytime time of year. 
Valentine Waiting for the Great Pumpkin
OCD Extra: November Booklist Reviews
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under PeanutsOCDEd PiskorCharles Burns 14 Nov 2014 1:46 PM
This month's issue of Booklist will include reviews of recent releases by a Fantagraphics creator, excerpted below: 
Hip Hop Family Tree  
"The second collection of Piskor's hip-hop history in comics may be a better place to start reading it than the first....Piskor's Jack Kirby-ish drawing chops-monumental figures in thrusting, dynamic action; flat colors that crush perspective-constitute precisely the sturdy vehicle to carry it as far as Piskor will take it." –Ray Olson
"Peanuts' enduring appeal is timeless and universal, and this handsomely designed volume only enhances its allure... This era…seesthe introduction of such annual events as the futile vigil for the Great Pumpkin and the Christmas pageant, as well as the birth of Charlie Brown's sister, Sally."
–Gordon Flagg 


Fantagraphics dominates NY Times Best Seller List
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Walt KellyPeanutsDon RosaDisneyCharles M Schulz 10 Nov 2014 11:50 AM
Best Seller
This week, Fantagraphics topped the NY Times Best Seller list in hardback graphic novels. Four of our new releases landed on the list: In the number one position was Pogo - The Complete Syndicated Strips Vol. 3 "Evidence to the Contrary" by Walt KellyThis volume features daily and Sunday strips (in full color) from 1953-1954. Kelly introduces one of his boldest political caricatures, the insidious Simple J. Malarkey. Seminole Sam scams, Churchy La Femme cross-dresses, P.T. Bridgeport returns and more.
 Pogo Vol. 3 Peanuts
N0. 2 on the Best Seller list was The Complete Peanuts 1991-1994 Gift Box Set by Charles M. Schulz. There's a reason this two-some is so popular; the books are full of surprises for the most ardent Peanuts fan and Schulz's humor is unrestrained and glorious. There is a charmingly odd story of when the school bus never comes, full-on Waiting for Godot. In addition, Charlie Brown finally FINALLY hits a home run but the entire story is worth the boxset. 
Rosa Box Set 
At spot 3 is Walt Disney's Uncle Scrooge and Donald Duck: The Don Rosa Libary Volumes 1 + 2 Gift Box Set including "Return to Plain Awful" and "Son of the Sun". Famed for his prizewinning "Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck," Rosa wrote and drew a whopping two decades' worth of ripping Scrooge and Donald yarns!  Duckburg's richest tycoon is on the hunt for legendary square eggs - and he's bringing Donald, Huey, Dewey, and Louie along, in the sequel to "Lost in the Andes"! 
 Peanuts
And at spot 6 is the single volume of The Complete Peanuts Vol. 22 1993-1994 by Charles M. Schulz. Complete with the homerun, the bus that wouldn't come PLUS Snoopy makes a run for the Supreme Court and battles pneumonia.
 
The week these four books came out, we had about 54 pounds of graphic novels, comic strips and reprints come out so we still a bit shocked to have so many titles on the list (but not so shocked when you consider the awesome comics). Gary and Eric did some deadlifts just to see if they could guess the weight of the releases from Wednesday, October 22nd. 
Deadlift 
We'll keep printing if you keep a-reading! 
A Valentine for Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz - Photoset Preview
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsPeanutsnew releasesCharles M Schulz 7 Nov 2014 10:05 AM

"Schulz was truly one of the game's great ambassadors." – Former National Baseball Hall of Fame President Dale Petroskey

"Novelty Peanuts books are the best kind of novelty book.” – The Comics Reporter

A Valentine for Charlie Brown
by Charles M. Schulz

72-page two-color 5.75" x 5.75" hardcover • $9.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-804-5

Due to arrive in 2-4 weeks. Click on the thumbnails for larger versions; get more info, see more previews, and pre-order your copy here:

http://fantagraphics.com/valentineforcharliebrown

A Valentine for Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz - Video/Photo Slideshow
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsPeanutsComing AttractionsCharles M Schulz 5 Nov 2014 10:45 AM

A Valentine for Charlie Brown
by Charles M. Schulz

72-page color 5.75" x 5.75" hardcover • $9.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-804-5

Ships in: December 2014 (subject to change) — Pre-Order Now

Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang have made an indelible mark on so many treasured American holidays and traditions, from Charlie Brown’s infamous Christmas tree to Linus’s obsession with the Great Pumpkin. And who can forget the most romantic—and occasionally loneliest—of all holidays? From Charlie Brown opening an empty mailbox every February 14th, to Sally Brown whispering sweet somethings to her “sweet baboo” Linus, A Valentine for Charlie Brown is the perfect gift to remind that special someone in your life just what love is all about, for better and for worse!

View Video & Photo Slideshow in New Window



Weekly OCD 10.31.2014
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under ZapVictor MoscosoTony MillionaireSpain RodriguezSimon HanselmannS Clay WilsonRobert WilliamsRobert CrumbRick GriffinreviewsPeanutsOCDMegahexMatt DannerDrew WeingDrew FriedmanCharles M Schulz 31 Oct 2014 3:30 PM

This week's hauntingly spooktacular collection of Online Commentaries and Diversions:

The Complete Zap ComixReview: The Complete Zap Comix

"While the early issues stand as rowdy documents of the 1960s counterculture, Zap was also more. In reinventing the comic book, it set off legal battles and conversations over censorship, brought attention to cartoonists as artists, and set an example for generations of alternative comics creators like Charles Burns, Daniel Clowes, Joe Matt and the Hernandez Brothers." – Dana Jennings, The NY Times

 

The Lonesome Go by Tim LaneReview: The Lonesome Go by Tim Lane

"Lane’s fluency in portraiture, page layout, lettering, and storytelling is on display, as deep contextual details are crammed into tight panels and captions." – Dominic Umile, Hyperallergic

 

Set to Sea [Softcover Ed.] by Drew WeingReview: Set to Sea [Softcover Ed.] by Drew Weing

"A true graphic odyssey which any lover of a dream-life must see, this eternally fresh yet solid entertainment is a genuine 'must read'." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

 

Heroes of the Comics: Portraits of the Legends of Comic Books by Drew FriedmanCommentary: Heroes of the Comics: Portraits of the Legends of Comic Books by Drew Friedman

"The portraits are a genuine insight and reflection of the person and their contribution. Special kudos to Drew for his careful research so that the bios are accurate and help to add to the ongoing study of how it all began in comics." – Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson, The Beat

 

Megahex by Simon HanselmannInterview: Megahex by Simon Hanselmann

"He doesn't just draw the funny or sexy moments -- he lets the characters and the readers enjoy and laugh, but then he shows the fallout from some of the characters' actions, depicting them as them scared and desperate, pathetic and troubled. Hanselmann's skill at depicting this range of emotions and exploring those consequences is what makes his work so fascinating and so worth rereading." – Alex Dueben, Comic Book Resources

 

Sock Monkey: Into the Deep Woods by Tony Millionaire and Matt DannerReview: Sock Monkey: Into the Deep Woods by Tony Millionaire and Matt Danner

"Like the very best children’s classics, this is a book that isn’t afraid to confront dark matters and actively embraces fear and sadness amidst the wonders in an effort to craft a better story.

Compelling, beguiling and visually intoxicating, this latest Sock Monkey yarn judiciously leavens discovery with anxiety, heartbreak with gleeful imaginative innocence and terror with bold triumph." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

 

Walt Disney's Uncle Scrooge and Donald Duck: Return to Plain Awful by Don RosaPlug: Walt Disney's Uncle Scrooge and Donald Duck: Return to Plain Awful by Don Rosa

"Let me be perfectly clear: The Don Rosa & Carl Barks Duck books are as good as comics get. Period. Nothing surpasses – only matches – the pure imagination, humor, adventure, and heart of these Donald Duck & Uncle Scrooge stories." – Vince Ostrowski, Multiversity Comics

Plug: "Any time a Carl Barks or Don Rosa book of Donald Duck or Uncle Scrooge comics is released, I get all excited. Because they’re great! I’m not kidding! Also good for jaded fans too cool for kids’ comics." – Dan Greenfield, 13th Dimension

 

Waiting for the Great Pumpkin by Charles M. SchulzReview: Waiting for the Great Pumpkin by Charles M. Schulz

"This adorable little collection of strips is the perfect prize for your costume contest. Growing up, you may have gotten to know the Great Pumpkin mainly through the evergreen TV special — but the original strips collected here are both brainier and more emotionally complex than the show." – Etelka Lehoczky, NPR

 

A Valentine for Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz - First Look
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsPeanutsComing AttractionsCharles M Schulz 28 Oct 2014 4:45 PM

A Valentine for Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz - Cover

A Valentine for Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz - Inside Page

Oh, that Charlie Brown. What a sigh!

A Valentine for Charlie Brown is here, a bright pink square contrasted against Seattle's current fall gloom. Our next holiday-themed Peanuts gift book collects Charles M. Schulz's strips detailing our ever-optimistic round-headed hero, waiting so patiently for the valentine that he just knows will show up at his mailbox. Then, there's Sally Brown's continued pursuit of her reluctant "Sweet Baboo," Linus. This book makes for a great gift, whether or not you celebrate February 14th, and you can pre-order it now for a December delivery!

A Valentine for Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz - Excerpt
Written by Sonia Lei | Filed under previewsPeanutsComing AttractionsCharles M Schulz 24 Oct 2014 1:45 PM

You might think it's still too early to start thinking about Valentine's Day, but some of us enjoy a little more advance planning for these sorts of things. If you are one of those people, here's an 11-page excerpt of our next Peanuts gift book, A Valentine for Charlie Brown, for your consideration. The first few pages of the book features our ever-hopeful Charlie Brown staked out by the mailbox, on the lookout for any sign of a valentine addressed to him.

These holiday-themed Peanuts books make great little gifts and stocking stuffers, so check out the book page for more details and to pre-order a copy today!

A Valentine for Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz - Cover

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