Saturday, January 21, 2012
Comics Review: PEANUTS #1 (January 2012, kaboom!)
Seems I fibbed -- in a retroactive sense -- regarding my earlier proclamation, based on the rather unimpressive PEANUTS #0, that I would confine my future PEANUTS purchases to the Fantagraphics reprint series. I'd completely forgotten that I had preordered PEANUTS #1 in PREVIEWS. When the book arrived in what has recently been a cold and bare pull box at the store, I decided to give the title one more whirl. And "one more" will probably hold good, though #1 is legitimately better than #0. The two original leads, "Music Goes Round" (which I'd probably have titled "Music in Mind," since it has to do with a popular song that gets passed around from character to character like a bad aural penny) and "Cat Cash," feature ingenious visual effects and some more than competent sham-Schulz artwork. The use of musical staves in "Music Goes Round" pays homage to a longstanding PEANUTS tradition, and Frieda and her long-unseen "amazing spineless cat," Faron, are welcome visitors in "Cat Cash," wherein Lucy tries to cash in on a promised reward for finding the lost kitty and dragoons an unwilling Snoopy to help her do it. Lucy also shows us "How to Draw Charlie Brown" (an ironic choice, since Charlie of the famously round head was always among the toughest characters for Schulz to draw) and sprinkles her demo with the expected insults. Three vintage Schulz Sunday gags (including the famous "Am I buttering too loud for you?" gag, which Schulz literally recycled many years later with different characters) round out a pleasant enough package. Pleasant, but not "special" enough to justify any further contributions to kaboom!'s coffers.