The Complete Peanuts 1993-1994

Writer / Artist
The Complete Peanuts 1993-1994
Complete Peanuts 1993 review
  • UK publisher / ISBN: Canongate Books - 978-1-78211-519-9
  • North American Publisher / ISBN: Fantagraphics Books - 978-1-60699-773-4
  • Volume No.: 22
  • Release date: 2014
  • Format: Black and white
  • UPC: 9781606997734
  • Contains adult content?: no
  • Does this pass the Bechdel test?: yes
  • Positive minority portrayal?: no

In the 22nd volume of The Complete Peanuts, an elated Charlie Brown turns cartwheels in a single-panel daily strip. The reason for this gymnastic feat: “I hit a home run in the ninth inning, and we won! I was the hero!!” “YOU?!” says Sally. Yes, him. Although we don’t see it happen, Schulz finally decides to give Charlie Brown a break and after a 42-year losing streak, he wins a game – off Roy Hobbes’ great-granddaughter, Schulz delivering a sly homage to The Natural. This doesn’t have the shattering effect on the rest of the strip that you might expect. Everything continues as normal and barely twenty pages later he’s back to his losing ways. But wait. There’s a new game starting on page 75. Can he really win another one?

The double-height Sunday splash panels, narrative captions, and single-panel dailies make a few appearances in this volume (the captions go to Spike, Snoopy and Rerun). Linus notices there’s an opening for a judge on the bench of the Supreme Court, so he writes to the President to nominate The World Famous Attorney for the seat. Charlie Brown is not at all surprised that it goes to Ruth Bader Ginsburg instead. “How could you ever think they’d let you be a judge on the Supreme Court?” he asks Snoopy. “You can’t even decide if you’ll have your supper in the red dish or the yellow dish… or your drinking water in the green dish or the blue dish!”

In another sequence Snoopy is hospitalised with pneumonia. Three of his brothers ― Andy, Spike, and Olaf ― arrive by his bedside. They don’t display any more personality in this supporting role than they do in their own sleepy little worlds, and their presence is another reminder of how in this late period Schulz relies on your affection for these characters to keep you reading when the content really isn’t holding your interest.
The routine introduction to this volume by TV journalist Jake Tapper has been written by ten people before him and the by-now very anachronistic series design make this volume feel much older and outdated than it should. 1994 wasn’t THAT long ago. On the upside, Lucy and Linus’ little brother Rerun starts appearing in more strips too. Next volume he’ll be tying his own shoelaces. Where does the time go?