Funny Things: A Comic Strip Biography of Charles M. Schulz

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Pub Date 29 Aug 2023 | Archive Date 29 Aug 2023
IDW Publishing | Top Shelf Productions

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Discover the man behind Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the Peanuts gang in this imaginative and tender-hearted tribute told in comic-strip format!

Charles M. Schulz was arguably the most influential and popular cartoonist of the 20th century, and he poured many of his own emotions and experiences into the world of Peanuts over its iconic 50-year run. Now, Luca Debus and Francesco Matteuzzi pay tribute to the master by telling the story of Schulz’s life in the medium that made him immortal: the comic strip. Every strip provides a laugh as well as a piece of insight into his remarkable life story. Starting with the last days of his monumental career, Funny Things jumps back and forth in time to narrate both Schulz’s artistic achievements and the personal episodes that formed him as an author and human being, ultimately shaping him into the most beloved cartoonist on the planet. Filled with affection, charm, and poignant insight, Funny Things imagines Schulz through the lens of the very world he created, inviting us all to meet the man behind the blanket.
Discover the man behind Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the Peanuts gang in this imaginative and tender-hearted tribute told in comic-strip format!

Charles M. Schulz was arguably the most influential and...

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ISBN 9781603095266
PRICE $39.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 24 members

Featured Reviews

Funny Things: A Comic Strip Biography of Charles M. Schultz will be published on August 29, 2023. Top Shelf Productions, an imprint of IDW Publishing, provided an early galley for review.

I own all twenty-six volumes of The Complete Peanuts. To say I am a fan is an understatement. The work of Charles Schultz has always been a part of my life from as long as I can remember. So, this upcoming book instantly drew me in.

First off, I absolutely adore the format that Debus and Matteuzzi chose. Doing six black-and-white strips followed by one larger series in full color perfectly mirrors the daily and Sunday formats of the classic Peanuts series. Also, in their own way, they succeed at bringing about the mood and humor of Schultz's work as they tell a version of his life story. For me, this all hits the right nostalgia mark.

A good biography should always enlighten as well as entertain. Though I knew a lot about Schultz's life, I learned quite a few new facts from this one as well. That made it time well spent. I am certain others who pick this up will also come away with the same feeling.

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I had the pleasure of getting a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I've been a lifelong fan of the <i>Peanuts</I> comics, and even acted in a few performances of <i>You're a Good Man Charlie Brown</i>. I grew up with [book: Around the World in 75 Years] and have yet to go through a Christmas season with the Charlie Brown special... yet I never read a biography of Charles Schulz. I was delighted when I saw that this was coming out soon, and eagerly requested a copy.

There's something beautiful about Schulz getting his life story told through the medium that he dominated for the bulk of his life. Everyone knows Charlie Brown and Snoopy, and I think most readers realized just how much of good ole Sparky was to be found in Charlie Brown. This biography really exemplifies that fact, while also highlighting the differences where they existed.

Did you know about Sparky's love of sports, and the fact he was actually quite good at them? The ice rink his wife helped him build, or his service in WW2? How about how long it took for <i>Peanuts</i> to actually come to be, and the struggle to get it picked up? How about how dedicated he was to his craft - to the point that he wasn't satisfied with just one strip, but at one point had <i>three</i> going out every week?

While there are less than savory facts about Sparky's life, this biography doesn't shy away from them. Punchlines help soften the blows for some tragedies, and overall you're left with a fair bit of Schulz's own words about his life and considerations. It made me want to learn more about his biography, and to see if my library had the complete Peanuts collection available.

I really enjoyed this book.

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Thank you to NetGalley, IDW Publishing, and Top Shelf Productions for this amazing ARC. All opinions are my own.

Charles M. Schulz was the creator of Peanuts, the father of Charlie Brown and Snoopy and Peppermint Patty and Woodstock and Schroeder. All of these characters that make up so many childhoods and fill up so many TV screens during holidays and celebrations. He had a hard but joyous life filled with everyday anxieties, tragedies, failures, but also love, ambition, and success. I never knew how much I loved this guy! I mean, he was a part of my Christmases, my Halloweens, my everything...I even have a little Schroeder playing a piano on my bedside table!

To start off, I got very emotionally invested in this book—VERY. At the start of this book, I was laughing out loud; however, in the middle and near the end, I was just crying. He's lived such an impactful life and all he wants to do is skate, draw, and be with his family! His story is very heartwarming. On another note, I had no idea that he had passed away in February 2000; I was born just a couple months later! For some reason, I just assumed he was still alive since I grew up reading the Funnies in my dad’s Sunday paper—I still am!—and watching the films at my grandma’s house, and in the book, it ends with him still alive (spoilers?). I guess he technically still is alive. Through his legacy. It’s so strong, so unbreakable. I don’t think his art—his Peanuts—will ever die. He really had no idea what his art would become.

I really like how this book was in graphic/comic format as it made it really easy to read, and you didn't get stuck on extraneous details. In this format, it's easier to show rather than tell. The writing and pacing was done very well. I am not very religious, but I liked the "strips" devoted to talking about his faith. The art style was fluid and adorable, it really worked well with the stories.

Overall, a pretty great biography. RIP Sparky, you will forever be missed!

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