Peanuts will live on in cyberspace
A majority of Americans can't remember a time when Charles Schulz' "Peanuts" strip wasn't in the day's paper. For almost a half-century, Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the gang have been a staple of daily life. But with Schulz' retirement, the last Peanuts will run in February.
In an earlier era, when the last strip ran, that would have been the end of things. Unless you had clipped out a few favorites, you wouldn't have ever been able to indulge your taste for the particular comic again.
The Internet, though, will allow Peanuts to live on in perpetuity. There is an official Peanuts site, hundreds of fan sites, and even a newsgroup dedicated to the strip. The sheer volume of Peanuts sites on the 'Net attests to the influence Schulz had on our culture and on people's hearts.
The logical starting point for finding Peanuts online is the official Web page: Snoopy.com. Here you'll find a guide to most of the major characters from Peanuts (but whatever happened to Violet and Patty?), the most recent month's worth of cartoons, a biography of Schulz and a history of the strip. There are also games for children (including a neat little baseball game with Snoopy batting against Charlie Brown), and an online store with tons of Peanuts collectibles.
The Peanuts Collectors Club has its own Web site. A lot of the pages on that site have to do with purchasing collectibles, but they do have a neat list of links to other Peanuts sites.
The Peanuts TV specials have all come from Bill Melendez Productions; this Web site has a chronological list of all the Peanuts specials, and a list of animation cels available for purchase (although they don't offer online ordering).
Peanuts fan Scott McGuire has one of the grayest sites you'll ever see it's nearly all text. But he also has built one of the largest resources dedicated to Peanuts, with links to other sites and some really comprehensive bibliographies of Peanuts books and TV specials.
The newsgroup, alt.comics.peanuts (which can be accessed via Deja.com if you don't have access to a news server) is a fans' forum; when we visited the week before Christmas, the messages were all (obviously) about Schulz' pending retirement.
© Copyright Jim Trageser
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