As an adult, I enjoy the double meanings in cartoons for kids–whether Looney Toons or Cars. It gives me an extra laugh. Most Sundays I read the comics to the kids but rarely explain the double meanings. But, I’m still trying to figure out how I feel after learning how Charles Schulz embedded other meanings into his Peanuts cartoons. I heard a story on NPR this morning about a new biography about Schulz. Apparently, he was working out his own struggles in the life of Charlie Brown. It makes perfect sense that he did. But I admit that I only read the strip at its innocent level. It was a fun, vanilla, story about a lovable dog with lots of fantasy, a boy who wanted to be great but was only average or worse, an egocentric girl, and so on. And the “story” about Schulz was that he was a Christian.
Now, I am interested to re-read the strip in order to “hear” Schulz’ angst and inner life. And yet, I am only half-interested in doing so because they will cease to be innocent fun (especially when he is making remarks on his love for a woman not his wife).