April 23rd, 2009

Snarky Candiru2

Friday, 24 April 2009

It seems to me that this week's unifying theme is that Elly's life is a tapestry of frustration and despair with no hint of any sort of relief. That being said, we should expect that we'd have to contend with John asking her what she does all day. It might happen today or it might ruin our Saturday but we have to know that Rod must be demonized.

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Tomorrow, perhaps; she's got to repeat repeating herself. I guess she's become Lynnie Two-two.

Panel 1: We see Elly laying down the law to Mike; if he's rude to her one more time, she'll send him to his room for the rest of the day without supper. As I remember from the last time she trotted this out, we were quite upset that she'd try to starve Mike into submission; we were also quite right to be outraged. You can't do that to a growing child.

Panel 2: In any event, he totally freaking baffles her by giving her a Bronx cheer; this is because, as I said last time, she never quite twigged to the fact that children will always try and see what they can get away with.

Panel 3: As I implied before, he cannot get away with much; this is because we see a surprised Mike being forcibly marched into his room by a furious Elly. Why he should have to suffer because she can't get it through her thick skull that she'd all but dared him to disobey is a head-scratcher.

Panel 4: So is trying to figure out why we should feel sorry for her as she confesses that she thought-bubbles that they always make you carry out the threats she wishes she'd never made. If she didn't want to punish him, why did she set it up that she'd have to?

Summary: Let's hope that tomorrow's is the one I mentioned; I'd like something relatively fresh to snark.

Lynn and her BFF "Sparky"

I just finished David Michaelis's acclaimed biography Schulz and Peanuts, a fascinating volume that suggests that, in terms of creative neuroses, Schulz was the cartooning world's answer to Woody Allen...including a scandal or two in his personal life involving much younger women.  On that subject, there's quite a bit about Lynn, including that she was Schulz's "latest light romance," with the clear implication that they had what would now be termed an "emotional affair" (i.e. unconsummated but pretty heavy), but that they had a major falling-out when she "killed off" Farley.  (On the latter, I knew he had been against it, but it wasn't clear before reading this book how very upset he got about the whole thing, declaring afterwards, "I'll never forgive her for that" -- although the relationship between them apparently healed enough for her to visit him several times during the last few months of his life.)

I was well aware that Schulz's family was very upset with the biography, although whether because of delibrate skewing of the material by Michaelis, or anger at seeing one's husband or father depicted in anything other than a hagiographic manner, I can't determine.  But what I did find interesting was one of Monte Schulz's reactions to the book, as published on the "Cartoon Brew" web site:

But what about voices who weren’t heard? Well, for example, he only spoke to my sister Jill once over a lunch and that was that. He did interview Cathy Guisewite, but then called back to ask her, if you can believe it, whether or not my dad “came on to her.” Is he joking? Cathy knew Dad for more than twenty years, and except for one or two lines, David left her out of the book in favor of Lynn Johnston who provided much more provocative information, much of which (particularly in the first draft) is silly and self-serving.

Somehow, I'd sure love to know what was in that first draft...