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The Regal Beagle

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Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz once said that he didn't envy the dull, repetitive life of a dog. Perhaps it was that peculiar sympathy that made Snoopy, Charlie Brown's pet beagle, just a little more human than any of the pensive, giant-headed children that populated Schulz's long-running comic strip. Not merely content to sit, roll over, and play dead, Snoopy retreated to a world of daydreams where he could be a famous novelist, dancer, composer, or war hero. And because his powers of imagination and imitation were so great, the regal beagle's smiling image was embraced by groups as diverse as NASA and the American peace movement of the 1960s. But for all of his dancing in the flower beds, Snoopy was no dove. The brave pup seldom missed a chance to climb to the top of his doghouse and into the cockpit of his trusty Sopwith Camel to assume the role of a WWI fighting ace and take to the dangerous skies of Europe and battle his archenemy the Red Baron. Alas, for the WWI ace, his heavily armed flying doghouse usually went down in a cloud of smoke.

A collection of 40 comic strips featuring the original Snoop Dog's most daring aerial adventures is on exhibit through April 27th at Mid-South Community College in West Memphis. See Snoopy beat the Red Baron; see the Red Baron beat Snoopy; and discover why Schulz's strip, which premiered in 1950, continues to be popular even after the artist's death.

"Snoopy as the World War I Flying Ace," Donald W. Reynolds Center, Mid-South Community College, 2000 W. Broadway, West Memphis, Arkansas. Hours: Monday-Thursday, 8:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m., and Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m.

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