Nuts about it.
Are you loopy about Snoopy? Then get down to Somerset House to see the Good Grief, Charlie Brown! exhibition.
I'll come straight out with it. This was hands down one of my favourite shows of the last few years. Not that I was a massive Peanuts fan when I was a kid, although I always enjoyed Snoopy's flights of fancy against the Red Baron. This is just a really well conceived and put on show with stuff for youngsters (learn how to draw Peanuts) and the older generation - plenty of insight into the strips real life, grown-up themes of race, war, feminism and their impact on the cartoons and the wider world.
From the initial scene setting of Charles M. Schulz's early years in the midwest of America - including his baseball glove and skate shoes, through character and story development to the way Snoopy ended up as an unlikely anti-Vietnam hero, went to the Moon and then mashed up with Smiths lyrics. There's so much here. And the best bit? The cartoons themselves aren't hidden away, but displayed loud and proud on continuous A-frames. You can be there hours.
Obviously, with the amount of great imagery and people mulling around, it's a great photography spot and I spent as much time taking pictures as looking at the content.
Somerset House has really done a number on this one, and although they may not be the obvious choice (the V&A missed a trick), it's a really excellent and thought-provoking exhibition for all ages that isn't too expensive.
What is too expensive (and thereby drops a Toggle, sadly) is the shop. Don't get me wrong, it's all quality but it’s eye wateringly expensive. I would have loved a t-shirt, but £40 as a base price is toppy and everything on offer was a little pricey. You certainly weren’t paying Peanuts.
That small quibble aside, it's really one for the whole family - we loved it and I'll be wearing my 'Snoopy for President' badge with pride. God knows, we could do worse.
Good Grief, Charlie Brown! is at Somerset House until 3 March.
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