The Electric Joe Cool Acid Test


Bootleg Peanuts items abound. Our Facebook feeds are filled with unlicensed Snoopy shirts, Amazon has unlicensed Peanuts books. But the big unlicensed item in the early 1980s? LSD. The popular form of blotter acid was those decorated with images of Joe Cool, or the World War I Flying Ace, or Snoopy in a sombrero.

The articles at the time would claim that the locals in Lansing, Michigan called them “Snoops”, but then the articles (or at least the headlines) also claimed that the use of Snoopy was a clear sign that they intended to sell them to young children. Because obviously, no adult would ever want to buy something with a Snoopy on it, right? (I file this away with the “marijuana edibles are sold in packages that look like candy, so obviously folks are giving them to kids on Halloween”, a form of moral panic based in zero actual incidents. Luckily, there are some arrest articles that note that none of it was being found in schools.)

If you have any concern about my unreasonably doubting press coverage, here is an article where they talk about “Each tab had a ‘Snoopy’ character printed on it in yellow ink, taken from the ‘Peanuts’ comic strip” and they show a picture of the sheet of acid… covered in pictures of Woodstock. (This is not to say that some weren’t actually Snoopy; they were. They were indeed.)

In 1982, there were a number of stories of folks arrested selling these sheets… the use of Snoopy made national coverage over local small-time drug dealer prosecutions. But some of these folks faced worse than the the criminal justice system: United Features Syndicate’s copyright lawyers went after them.


  As these two ads, from 1954 and 1961 respectively, show, Patty and Violet had a rather consistent relationship… living on slightly different planes, and not introducing themselves, but giving a name to each other. 40 SHARES Share Tweet this thing Follow the AAUGH Blog

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