About the “Author”
Daniel Leonard is a 26-year-old teacher, writer, and musician. He is currently a poetry MFA candidate at Boston University. He grew up in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, where he stapled newspaper comics into homemade scrapbooks along with his own renderings of characters from Peanuts, Garfield, and Calvin and Hobbes. He earned a master’s in philosophy from K.U.Leuven in Belgium and has an interdisciplinary degree from Wheaton College in philosophy, English, and music. He deletes parts of things in his spare time. Daniel also edits the New Whirled Dictionary and serves as producer/handler for Freddy the Raccoon.
A biography of Peanuts author Charles Schulz can be found here. If you’d like to stare deeper into the abyss of Peanuts, consider investing in the beautiful Fantagraphics collections:
- The Complete Peanuts 1963-1966 Box Set ($33)
- The Complete Peanuts 1967-1970 Box Set ($31)
- The Complete Peanuts 1971-1974 Box Set ($31)
The somber subject matter of Peanuts often goes unnoticed due to the merchandising of the strip (sentimental greeting cards and the like) as well as the gag structure of the strips themselves. The concluding punchline distances readers emotionally from the misery that precedes it; jokes turn us from co-sufferers into onlooking wise guys. Schulz was well aware that the dismal content of Peanuts, which is to say the stuff of life, is difficult to face without humor to aid us. By removing the final gag panel, we bring to the fore exactly how dark Schulz’s view of the world has always been. That this view often eludes us merely affirms Schulz’s skill at helping us to cope.
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