gary9635 wrote:I've got to bail on this thread before I blow a gasket. Before leaving... the Peanuts haters out there should do a quick Google on the strip and read how cutting edge Peanuts was for its time, how brilliant the humor and innovative the workings of Schulz. Most cartoonist today would not be so were it not for Charles Schulz. Many strips wish they were Peanuts, including Pearls before Swine, but succeed only in ripping off the timing, panel layouts, sarcasm, and formulations of Peanuts. Most cartoonists today, myself included, aren't worthy to gather the eraser rubbings of Sparky Schulz. The man was a cartooning god, and even the hacks who emulate him will admit that much.
+1, and want to add:
Between this discussion and the "best comics" discussion, it's really funny to see how many people hate Peanuts and Doonesbury, but claim that Calvin & Hobbes and Bloom County are their favorites. The simple fact is that Calvin & Hobbes would not exist if Peanuts didn't come first (Watterson has said this repeatedly) and Bloom County wouldn't exist if Doonesbury didn't come first. Reading Berke Breathed's notes in the Bloom County Complete Library, you repeatedly see comments like:
"...I'd never read any comic besides Doonesbury."
"...the talking mirror is a warmed-over Garry Trudeau routine from his Yale strip, alas. I apologized some years later."
Referring to one of his own Bloom County characters (Limekiller), Breathed said he was, "a sloppy retread of Doonesbury's 'Duke.'"
None of this is to say that Peanuts and Doonesbury are better than Calvin & Hobbes and Bloom County, respectively. That's a completely subjective consideration, and I, for one, think both of the latter comics are superior to their forebears. But the artists themselves would be the first to explain how important the earlier ones were.
And for Peanuts, that would include not just Watterson, creator of Calvin & Hobbes, but literally dozens of comic artists, including the authors of almost every one of the favorites listed on the favorites discussion.
And besides... dropping all considerations of how groundbreaking and influential Peanuts was, it was still funny and poignant like no other comic. I feel a little sad that seemingly so few people are capable of recognizing or appreciating that.