World famous beagle goes against laws of God and nature…

§ September 24th, 2012 § Filed under pal plugging, peanuts, publishing, retailing, sir-links-a-lot § 7 Comments


AAAAAUGH! It’s terrifying! Demon! Sorcerer!

Well, okay, Charles Schulz just gave Snoopy a speech balloon instead of a word balloon, which he did once or twice over the years. I think we can cut the man some slack. But still, this is the sort of thing that always stops me dead with its…wrongness, somehow. There’s a measure of communication between human and animal characters in Peanuts, of course, but never do the animals explicitly “speak” to any of the children (unless there’s something I missed).

However, there is a strip later in the volume where I spotted the above panel (The Complete Peanuts: 1985-1986) in which Marcie calls Snoopy by the name of “The Lone Beagle,” a sobriquet Snoopy used to refer to himself during one of his flights of fancy in the previous days’ strips. At first I believed it could only have been communicated to Marcie via direct speech. Then again, perhaps Marcie was able to infer the name by observing Snoopy’s acting-out of his fantasy, which opens up yet more questions regarding Snoopy’s undoglike behavior and its general acceptance in the Peanuts universe, but perhaps that’s far enough down that rabbit hole.

In other news:

  • There’s some interesting stuff going on between Fantagraphics and Dave Sim regarding the possibility of new packaging of Cerebus material being covered by the Moment of Cerebus site. No idea if it’ll ever happen, but it sure is fascinating reading the back-and-forth of what would be required to make such a project materialize.

    This is all in response to Sim’s statement in the last issue of Glamourpuss that he’s pretty much done with comics, and how some folks responding with the desire for him to be able to continue producing work. One of my readers asked for my thoughts on the matter, particularly from the retail end, and…well, heck, let’s just do it here instead of putting it off for another day.

    Now, I liked Glamourpuss. Its weird combination of fashion parody and comic strip history was a little mindboggling, but it worked, somehow, and kept me entertained through its entire run. It started off with having me wonder what Dave was up to, and as time went on, I realized the only real answer to that was “Dave was doing something I find entertaining and informative” and that was good enough for me.

    It started off relatively well as far as sales go, too…I don’t have the exact numbers in front of me, but if memory serves it was selling at respectable indie title levels. But, as time wore on, sales did drop, until we had just a couple of holdouts still hanging on and reading the book ’til the end. I don’t know if those readers who dropped the book were expecting Cerebus II and didn’t get it, were looking forward to new Sim material and just didn’t care for it, or just stopped buying comics entirely (a sadly realistic possibility). It’s just the simple fact that Not Everything Catches On, and I’m sorry this didn’t go as well as it did for Dave, and I certainly don’t want him to leave the industry (though I couldn’t blame him if he did).

    I think he a good job promoting Glamourpuss, sending out promotional copies (I still treasure my signed copy of #1), calling stores personally (alas, he got our answering machine…when I called him back, I got his voice mail, answered by “Glamourpuss” herself!), his crazy variant covers (“zombie” variants, and variants featuring his Zatanna parody), and free overships of issues (which sometimes sold for us!). This certainly ensured good sales early on, but obviously their effectiveness wore off as time passed.

    Now, did I do enough to promote Glamourpuss at the shop? As a funnybook seller, it’s my job to be an advocate for every comic for, you know, the customers I think would enjoy said comic. I can’t shout out across the shop “I think everyone will enjoy this issue of Swamp Thing!” as much as I’d like to, simply because I know it’s not for everybody. And Glamourpuss was always bit of a hard sell. I mean, it was easy (if a little nutty) to describe to people, but hard to find the people who might be interested in such a thing. And given the number of comics we carry and the number of customers with differing tastes that we have and simply given the number of hours in the day, sometimes the most advocacy I can give a comic is just making sure it’s visible on the rack, and occasionally pointing it out to people I think would like it.

    I mean, I did what I could. I bought it, I enjoyed it, we carried it at the shop, I occasionally discussed it with folks, but if I could save every comic I liked from cancellation singlehandedly, Jupiter would still be on the stands.

  • Pal Jim is still blogging Hellblazer comics in his extremely intelligent and captivating way over at The Laughing Magician. He’s up to issue #3…only 292 issues (at press time), plus all those annuals and tie-ins, to go, Jim!
  • Well, well, well…look who’s back. …It’s Adam at Comics Make No Sense! The People have demanded that he revive his fun-filled weblog, and lo, it has come to pass. Go make the man feel welcome!
  • Bully, Schrodinger’s Bull Who Is Simultaneously Little and Stuffed, brings us a Ten of a Kind featuring really, really angry folks on comic book covers…which ends in the only way it can, with comics’ greatest symbol of unrestrained rage.
  • Look at what was in our pog haul. JUST LOOK AT IT.

7 Responses to “World famous beagle goes against laws of God and nature…”

  • Snark Shark says:

    ” Then again, perhaps Marcie was able to infer the name by observing Snoopy’s acting-out of his fantasy,”

    or Marcie was on some SERIOUS LSD.

    “Snoopy’s acting-out of his fantasy”

    maybe Snoopy was actually a kid in a dog costume acting out his fantasy. making him the FIRST “furry”.

    “Glamourpuss ”

    wasn’t it about the fashion industry in some way?
    Yeah, there was NO WAY i was going to be buying THAT.

    I DID read a few issues of the new series Jeff Smith was doing, and I just didn’t care for it much.

    Certain people may have ONE REALLY GREAT idea, but just that one. Everyhting else they do is “just OK”.
    Gene Roddenberry, for example.



    that’s too much kevin costner for ANYBODY.

  • Casey says:

    Marcie, and only Marcie, always knew about the World War I flying ace stuff too.

  • JRC says:

    please, talk about Jupiter.

  • Jack says:

    I remember the glory days of the early 90s, when I discovered Cerebus (via a video of Harlan Ellison interviewing comics creators) and I went out and bought the first phone book that week. I loved Cerebus to death, until-yes, I’m sure you see it coming-when he hit the point in Mothers and Daughters where the anti-feminist message started hitting. I was looking for an excuse to quit the book anyway, since I had to cut back some expenses and comics was a good place to start. I picked up Cerebus 300 though, just because Sim made it to the end, and while by then Sim and I were pretty well on opposite sides of the fence in terms of personal beliefs, I did say “good for you, Sim. You said you’d do it and you did.”

    The idea that Dave Sim might be finished in comics kind of bothers me, despite me not liking his work in years. Kind of like that last little bit of my childhood dying, even though I was nowhere near being a kid when I found Cerebus. Guess I thought he’d always be out there, throwing his comics at the market without a care for what others thought of it.

  • MRPRSN says:

    Yes, more about Jupiter. Those covers look interesting.

  • Bear says:

    To be honest, Mike, I think you were the only person I ever heard mention Glamourpuss, let alone actually liked it.

    Er, not judging, just saying. I don’t think it ever caught on outside of “if you like Sim, you might like this” circles.

  • Chris Mautner says:

    Casey beat me to it, but yeah, Marcie was always the only one in the Peanuts cast that seemed to understand what Snoopy was doing and in the later strips would frequently participate in his Red Baron fantasies. Make of that what you will.

    Charlie Brown seemed to understand Snoopy a lot too, but never really groked the Red Baron stuff the way Marcie did.