The Complete Peanuts 1959-1962 Box Set

Charles M. Schulz

Published by Fantagraphics, 2006
ISBN 10: 1560977744 / ISBN 13: 9781560977742
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Collecting the fifth and sixth volumes of The Complete Peanuts (1959-1960 and 1961-1962) in one handsome collector's slipcase designed by the cartoonist Seth, this is the perfect gift book item.

In The Complete Peanuts 1959-1960: As the first decade of Peanuts closes, it seems only fitting to bid farewell to that halcyon decade with a cover starring Patty, one of the original three Peanuts. Major new additions to classic Peanuts lore come fast and furious here. Snoopy begins to take up residence atop his doghouse, and his repertoire of impressions increases exponentially. Lucy sets up her booth and offers her first five-cent psychiatric counsel. (Her advice to a forlorn Charlie Brown: "Get over it.") For the very first time, Linus spends all night in the pumpkin patch on his lonely vigil for the Great Pumpkin (although he laments that he was a victim of "false doctrine," he's back 12 months later). Linus also gets into repeated, and visually explosive, scuffles with a blanket-stealing Snoopy, suffers the first depredations of his blanket-hating grandmother, and falls in love with his new teacher Miss Othmar. Even more importantly, several years after the last addition to the cast ("Pig-Pen"), Charlie Brown's sister Sally makes her appearance ― first as an (off-panel) brand new baby for Charlie to gush over, then as a toddler and eventually a real, talking, thinking cast member. (By the end of this volume, she'll already start developing her crush on Linus.) All this, and one of the most famous Peanuts strips ever: "Happiness is a warm puppy." Almost one hundred of the 731 strips collected in this volume (including many Sundays) have never been collected in any book since their original release, with one hundred more having been collected only once in relatively obscure and now impossible-to-find books; in other words, close to one quarter of the strips have never been seen by anyone but the most avid Peanuts completists. The introduction is by comedienne extraordinaire Whoopi Goldberg, who reveals which Peanuts character she has tattooed on her body (and where) ― as well as telling of her meeting with "Sparky" Schulz, and her fascinating theory on Snoopy's brother Spike. As always, this volume is gorgeously designed by award-winning cartoonist Seth. The Complete Peanuts continues to receive national and international media attention for its sophisticated treatment of one of the 20th Century's defining American classics.

In The Complete Peanuts 1961-1962: Launching into the 1960s, Schulz adds another new cast member. Two, in fact: The obnoxious Frieda, of "naturally curly hair" fame, and her inert, seemingly boneless cat Faron. The rapidly maturing Sally, who was after all just born in the previous volume, is ready to start kindergarten and not at all happy about it. Linus' life is particularly turbulent in this volume, as he is forced to wear glasses, sees the unexpected return of his favorite teacher, Miss Othmar, and coaxes Sally into the cult of the Great Pumpkin (with regrettable results). Snoopy, meanwhile, becomes a compulsive water sprinkler head stander, unhappily befriends a snowman or two, and endures a family crisis involving a little family of birds. Plus baseball blowouts (including a rare team victory), Beethoven birthdays, and plenty of dubious psychiatric help for a nickel. This book collects 730 daily and Sunday comic strips, the vast majority of which are not currently available in any in-print Peanuts collection, and many of which have never been reprinted since their initial appearance in papers over 50 years ago. With a new introduction by legendary jazz pianist/vocalist Diana Krall and gorgeous design by award-winning cartoonist Seth. 1461 black-and-white comic strips

Review: The fifth volume in Fantagraphics Books' Complete Peanuts series welcomes a new character: Sally, Charlie Brown's baby sister. It's interesting to see how the perpetually beleaguered CB--criticized for having a "face" face or a "failure face--now takes on the responsibility of worrying about the world his sister will grow up in. His role as manager of the baseball team continues to bring him woe, losing 600-0, losing all 20 games of the season, making a daring attempt to steal home, and having to miss a game to push his sister's stroller. Linus, at first wondering if Sally will someday go out with him, gets his answer in spades: "Isn't he the cutest thing?" But he'd much rather lavish his attention on the new teacher, Miss Othmar ("I'm very fond of the ground on which she walks"), even if his eggshell project doesn't work out as planned. Snoopy, though threatened by a hanging icicle and a possible freeway through his home, still finds joy in being a gopher, the Big Man on Campus, or the Mad Punter. "Peanuts" was well into its classic years in the 1959-60 period, with such signature moments as "Happiness is a warm puppy" and a lot of material that would become familiar staples of the Christmas and Halloween television specials. --David Horiuchi

By 1961-62, "Peanuts" was truly the comic strip that we all still know and love, with situations and sayings that would cement its place as one of the most memorable literary creations of all time. Linus is firmly center stage, and if not for baseball would probably eclipse Charlie Brown in status. His efforts to defend his blanket are legendary (Lucy buries it and turns it into a kite), he gets glasses, and his favorite teacher, Miss Othmar (now known as Mrs. Hagemeyer) returns, which leads to some consternation when he (1) learns that she's accepting money to teach and (2) tells her he'll give up his blanket if she gives up biting her fingernails. There's a new character, Frieda with the naturally curly hair, and her floppy cat strikes terror throughout the neighborhood. Oh, about that baseball team. Everyone quits when Schroeder gives up baseball for Beethoven (leading CB to take out a personal ad to manage another team), they decide their pep talk is making them hypocrites, and Linus is assigned to scout the opposing team. As much as "Peanuts" is a reflection of its era ("Why couldn't McCovey have hit the ball just three feet higher?"), it also had a self-awareness as a comic strip (Linus: "The most recent criticism is that there is too little action and far too much talking in the modern-day comic strip. What do you think about this?" CB: "Ridiculous!") that proved just how far Charles M. Schulz was ahead of his time. With fellow pianist Schroeder on the cover, Diana Krall wrote this volume's introduction. --David Horiuchi

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Title: The Complete Peanuts 1959-1962 Box Set
Publisher: Fantagraphics
Publication Date: 2006
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Used: Good

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