It's Only a Game

Overview

In the late 1950s, amidst the surging popularity of Peanuts and during a strongly creative period, Charles M. Schulz created his only other syndicated newspaper comic. It's Only a Game focused on the fun and foibles of people and their pastimes: golf, bowling, bridge, fishing, and more. This bouncy material, full of Schulz's signature wit, has for decades been considered one of the lost treasures of the comics field.
Now, almost half a century later, this material is collected ...
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Overview

In the late 1950s, amidst the surging popularity of Peanuts and during a strongly creative period, Charles M. Schulz created his only other syndicated newspaper comic. It's Only a Game focused on the fun and foibles of people and their pastimes: golf, bowling, bridge, fishing, and more. This bouncy material, full of Schulz's signature wit, has for decades been considered one of the lost treasures of the comics field.
Now, almost half a century later, this material is collected into book form for the first time! Commentary and insight is provided by artist and cartoonist Jim Sasseville, who worked with Schulz on the feature.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Between 1957 and 1959, Schulz created a single-panel sports-themed feature that ran three times a week or in a combined package on Sunday. He relied increasingly on Sasseville, who was writing and drawing the Peanuts comic book, to turn sketches and concepts into finished work. However, the fundamental style and attitude remains recognizably Schulz's. The same quality that made Peanuts a modern classic-Schulz's amused fascination with human pretensions and delusions-animates this minor newspaper cartoon. Unlike some contemporary sports cartoons, it focuses on amateur activities such as golf, bowling, Ping-Pong and even bridge. There's no cheering crowd, no huge prize to win. The people playing these games are at least nominally adults, though they look a lot like the Peanuts crew and behave like them, too. If Charlie Brown and his friends worry like adults, Schulz understood how childishly grownups can behave when they hit a bad shot or make a grand slam. Such excessive emotion is nothing to be concerned about, though; that's just the way we are. Schulz clearly enjoyed reminding adults of how silly they can be, as on the cover, where a Little League player reminds a scowling adult umpire that he shouldn't take a game too seriously. If nothing else, this book answers the question of what a grown-up Charlie Brown would have looked like. (Nov.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Hiding in the history of the world's most successful cartoonist is a second syndicated newspaper feature that many Peanuts lovers are probably unaware of: It's Only a Game, a series of single-panel sports gags that ran for about 14 months beginning in November 1957 and collected here complete. A rare opportunity to see Schulz's drawings of adults, the gags cover a wide variety of sports and games, including bowling, ping-pong, fishing, and Charlie Brown's beloved baseball. There are occasional glimpses of Peanuts's traditional themes-as when a golfer says, "I can never putt when I have guilt feelings"-and some wordless gags are quite nice, but Peanuts fans might find themselves underwhelmed by some of the rest. Many panels are about bridge, a game that has lost its former ubiquity. After only two months, Schulz turned the artwork over to Sasseville, artist for the 1950s Peanuts comic book stories published by Dell Comics, who produced finished panels based on Schulz's preliminary sketches (some of which are reproduced here). Ultimately a minor chapter in Schulz's career, but comics historians and avid Schulz fans will be thrilled to see it unearthed. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780971633896
  • Publisher: About Comics
  • Publication date: 11/24/2004
  • Pages: 236
  • Product dimensions: 5.56 (w) x 6.58 (h) x 0.34 (d)

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