One of my favorite comic strips is Charles Schulz’s Peanuts. There have been hundreds of Peanuts books published since the 1950s, but the books give small collections of strips and none of the books have been complete. In 2004, Fantagraphics Books began publishing The Complete Peanuts. Each volume has two complete years, in chronological order, of the Peanuts comic strip. These books are being released at two volumes per year and the last volume is scheduled to be published in May 2016. The most recent volume was The Complete Peanuts: 1983-1984.
Peanuts is one of the longest running comic strips in history. It began in October 1950 and was based on a series of comics Charles Schulz had done for a local newspaper called Lil’ Folks. The strip was published daily until Schulz’s retirement in January 2000. He died February 12, 2000 – the day before the final Sunday Peanuts comic strip ran in newspapers around the world. Today, the strip is still run in countless newspapers around the world, but Peanuts fans like having access to the complete series, and until these books, that was not possible, in print at least. Fantagraphics books is doing a great thing for the Peanuts community.
I have been collecting these books since 2004, and I buy the newest volume as it is released. I enjoy reading the comics when I have free time, and it is easy to get lost in the Peanuts world. Whether it is Snoopy’s World War I Flying Ace or Charlie Brown’s poor performance in baseball, Schulz was a comic genius. There are not many comic strips in newspapers today. In the world of online media, print media is suffering and it has effected the print comic strips. These volumes are a reminder of what comic strips once meant to the world. They were simple, but told stories that everyone could relate to.
I realize this is not much of a book review, but there is not alot to say about these books. They are simple and entertaining. Peanuts fans should be grateful to the Schulz family and Fantagraphics Books for providing fans with the complete comic strip.