December 30, 2011

Happy New Year, Charlie Brown available to watch online from Hulu and

You can celebrate the arrival of 2012 by watching Happy New Year, Charlie Brown together with She's a Good Skate, Charlie Brown streaming over the Internet from either or

Update: Happy New Year, Charlie Brown is no longer available on Hulu this January (2012).  Check back next January...

December 28, 2011

Reminder: Happy New Year, Charlie Brown Airs Thursday Dec 29 on ABC

It's the last Peanuts holiday specials of the season: Happy New Year, Charlie Brown, followed by slightly shortened version of She's a Good Skate, Charlie Brown will be broadcast Thursday, December 29, 2011 from 8 - 9 PM (Eastern/Pacific) on ABC.

December 27, 2011

Happiness Is... Peanuts: Friends Forever DVD Now Available

Happiness is... Peanuts: Friends Forever, the third DVD in Warner Home Video's "Happiness is... Peanuts" series of DVDs, is now available as of December 27, 2011.

Like the previous "Happiness is... Peanuts" DVD releases, the Friends Forever DVD contains one prime-time Peanuts TV special and one episode of the Saturday morning cartoon show, The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show.

The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show episode is Lucy Loves Schroeder, featuring the following short sketches:
  1. "Kite-Eating Tree" - Charlie Brown goes to Lucy's psychiatry booth for advice on fighting the kite-eating tree.
  2. "Sally" - Snoopy pretends to be the World War I Flying Ace and steals important enemy papers - that is, Sally's report for school.
  3. "Camp" - Charlie Brown gets sent home from camp for being a trouble-maker.
  4. "Lucy Loves Schroeder" - Lucy bugs Schroeder at the piano, including taking the piano and putting it in the washer and dryer.
  5. "Scared Snoopy" - Snoopy refuses to pay his psychiatry bill after consulting Lucy about noises he's been hearing at night.
The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show: Lucy Loves Schroeder has never been released on DVD in the United States before.

Unfortunately, the prime-time special is 1967's You're in Love, Charlie Brown, which has already been released by Warner Home Video on DVD... twice.  It already appears on the Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown Deluxe Edition DVD and the Peanuts 1960's Collection DVDs box set.

So purchasers should be aware that they may well already own one of the two shows on this DVD, and should judge accordingly whether the new DVD is worth purchasing.

The DVD contains no bonus features, has a total running time of 47 minutes, and has a suggested retail price of $14.97.

December 21, 2011

Reminder: I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown airs again Thursday Dec 22 on ABC

In case you missed it the first time (or just want to enjoy it again), I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown will be broadcast again on Thursday, December 22, 2011 from 9 - 10 PM (Eastern/Pacific) on ABC.

(Yes, the odd, late broadcast time of 9 - 10 PM Eastern/Pacific is correct.)

December 20, 2011

Snoopy guest stars in Mariah Carey's "When Christmas Comes" video

"When Christmas Comes," Mariah Carey's video for a song from her new holiday album,  Merry Christmas II You, features an unusual guest star... Snoopy.  The video also includes short clips from A Charlie Brown Christmas, even though the song doesn't seem to have anything to do with the classic Peanuts TV special.  You can see the video on YouTube:

(Snoopy appears from approximately 1:25 through 2:00 of the video.)

Mariah's new album does include a cover version of Vince Guaraldi's song "Christmas Time is Here" (although the track is titled "Charlie Brown Christmas"), but somehow Snoopy ended up in this video instead...!

December 15, 2011

Reminder: Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown airs Friday Dec 16 on FOX

The newest Peanuts animated special, Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown, is being shown again Friday, December 16, 2011 on FOX from 8 - 9 PM (Eastern/Pacific).  If you missed it when it was shown Thanksgiving evening, now's your chance to watch it!

Speaking of Happiness is a Warm Blanket... over the past few months, the Peanuts folks made some very amusing YouTube videos to promote the special - if you haven't seen them already, they're definitely worth checking out:

Department of Security Public Service Announcement

Security Blanket Infomercial

Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown "Art House" Trailer

Reminder: Unedited A Charlie Brown Christmas on TV Thursday Dec 15

The complete, unedited A Charlie Brown Christmas airs Thursday December 15, 2011, from 8-9 PM on ABC (Eastern/Pacific). It will be accompanied by Charlie Brown's Christmas Tales and a Prep & Landing short.

Watch I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown online on Hulu or

I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown is now available to watch streaming over the Internet from either or

Update: I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown is no longer available on Hulu this year (2011).  Check back next December...

December 13, 2011

A Vince Guaraldi Christmas, Live at the Middletree album from The Ornaments

For the past five years, Nashville-based jazz combo The Ornaments have performed holiday concerts featuring their take on Vince Guaraldi's distinctive soundtrack from the A Charlie Brown Christmas TV special.

This year, in addition to their continuing concerts, they've released an album titled A Vince Guaraldi Christmas, Live at the Middletree, featuring nine tracks of their interpretations of the classic holiday tunes.

A Vince Guaraldi Christmas, Live at the Middletree is available on CD from CDBaby or as a download from iTunes.  For more information about the album and The Ornaments, visit The Ornaments' Facebook page or read this article from ArtNow Nashville.

We here at haven't heard the album yet (although we do plan to check it out), but we wanted to let you know about it before the holiday season ended.

December 11, 2011

Reminder: I Want a Dog For Christmas, Charlie Brown airs Monday, December 12 on ABC

ABC will broadcast I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown on Monday, December 12, 2011 from 8 - 9 PM (Eastern/Pacific).

If that broadcast time isn't convenient, the special will air again on December 22.

December 8, 2011

Watch A Charlie Brown Christmas online on Hulu or

You can now watch the complete, unedited A Charlie Brown Christmas together with Charlie Brown's Christmas Tales streaming over the Internet from either or .

(Yes, even though ABC's December 5 broadcast of A Charlie Brown Christmas on TV was edited, the online streaming version of the show is complete.  The unedited special will be broadcast on TV on December 15.)

Update: A Charlie Brown Christmas is no longer available on Hulu this year (2011).  Check back next December...

December 7, 2011

Update adds new scenes to A Charlie Brown Christmas app

Loud Crow Interactive has released a free "director's cut" update for their popular A Charlie Brown Christmas interactive digital storybook app for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch.  The update adds 4 new scenes from the classic TV special that weren't included in the original release of the app, including the gang trying to catch snowflakes on their tongues and Sally's Christmas list.

You can see more screenshots of the new scenes on Loud Crow's Facebook page.  To get the "director's cut," download the newest update of the app from the App Store (the update is free if you've already purchased the app), run the app, and click the "Visit Store" button inside the book cover to get the free in-app update.

The app update also offers new ornament theme packs that you can purchase to add more variety when decorating the Christmas tree inside the app, and various bugfixes.  Currently the update and director's cut is only available for the iPad and iPhone version of the apps.

Loud Crow also announced a "12 days of A Charlie Brown Christmas" promotion, which is "an in-app scavenger hunt for your chance to win an iPad 2 loaded with Loud Crow apps."  Starting December 13, you can search the app for a special ornament each day for your chance to win.  For more details, visit the Loud Crow Interactive website or Facebook page.

The A Charlie Brown Christmas interactive storybook app costs $6.99 and can be purchased from the Apple App Store  .  For more information about the app, see our previous blog post or Loud Crow Interactive's website.

December 6, 2011

A Charlie Brown Christmas articles in the Washington Post

The Washington Post's website published two timely articles about A Charlie Brown Christmas in the past couple of days.

The first, "‘A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS’: The gospel truth behind how a humble ‘Peanuts’ holiday classic defied the odds", the story of how the TV special came to be, was actually published in the Washington Post last year.  But the article's worth reading if you haven't already, and the Post says there are "several new additions to the story" in this year's version.

The second, and less serious, article is "Shermy in ‘A Charlie Brown Christmas’: A tribute to an unsung holiday pop culture hero." As you might guess from the title, it focuses on one of the less famous Peanuts characters in the holiday classic.

December 4, 2011

Reminder: A Charlie Brown Christmas (short version) airs Monday, December 5 on ABC

A Charlie Brown Christmas will be broadcast Monday, December 5 from 8:00 - 8:30 PM (Eastern/Pacific) on ABC.

However, this will be a shortened version with several minutes removed because more commercials are shown per half-hour than in 1965.

If you want to see the complete unedited special, tune into ABC on Thursday December 15 from 8-9 PM instead.

November 29, 2011

Limited edition "A Charlie Brown Christmas" poster available December 1

Dark Hall Mansion has announced that "A Charlie Brown Christmas," the second in their series of limited edition posters celebrating the classic Peanuts television specials, will be released on December 1.

Update: As of December 2 evening, the posters are now all sold out.

There will be 3 versions of the poster drawn by artist Tom Whalen:

  • Standard Edition - limited to 450 prints
  • Variant Edition - limited to 100 prints
  • Silver Bells Edition - limited to 50 prints of the variant edition, printed on metal

Each print is 18" x 24", and is signed and numbered by Tom Whalen.

Standard Edition
Variant Edition

We think these are very cool posters (and yes, they're officially licensed). The variant edition is apparently inspired by Lucy's directive to Charlie Brown: "Get the biggest aluminum tree you can find, Charlie Brown, maybe painted pink." Click the thumbnails above to see larger versions, or visit Dark Hall Mansion's store for even larger images.

The prices (not including shipping) are as follows: $75 for the standard edition print, $125 for the variant edition print, and $250 for the Silver Bells edition metal print.

Starting Thursday, December 1 morning, you can order all 3 editions from ; then on Friday, December 2 all editions will also be available from Dark Hall Mansion's store.  The posters ship in heavy gauge tubes and should be sent well in advance of Christmas.

Dark Hall Mansion's first poster release, "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" sold out very quickly, so if you're interested, order promptly!

For more information about Dark Hall Mansion's Peanuts posters, visit their blog or Facebook page.

November 28, 2011

Jean Schulz at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

In this year's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, Jean Schulz was one of the "balloon handlers" for the Snoopy Flying Ace balloon.  You can read about her experience and see her photos in her blog post on the Schulz Museum website.

"Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown" returns to Louisville Slugger Museum

The "Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown" traveling exhibit, created by the Charles M. Schulz Museum, is now at the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory in Louisville, Kentucky, running through January 2, 2012.

The exhibition celebrates the holiday season with a presentation of the winter sports that Charles Schulz enjoyed; a behind-the-scenes history of the making of the animated classic A Charlie Brown Christmas; holiday-themed Peanuts comic strips; and seasonal novelties.

This is the third and final year the exhibit will be at the Louisville Slugger Museum — visit their website for more information.

(The "Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown" exhibit is also at the Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center in the City of Lake Charles, Louisiana during December 2011 and January 2012; see our earlier blog post.)

November 26, 2011

Watch A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving on Hulu

If you were too busy eating leftovers to catch A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving when it aired Thanksgiving evening, you can watch it streaming over the Internet from .

Update: A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is no longer available on Hulu this year (2011).  Check back next November...

November 24, 2011

2011 Peanuts Christmas Countdown

Enjoy the counting down the days until Christmas with the Peanuts gang, one day at a time, starting Friday November 25 on the home page.

The Peanuts Christmas Countdown panels are a series of single-panel comics distributed to newspapers and other media, and we're pleased to present them on Visit our home page each day for the latest panel... and don't put off your holiday preparations until too late!

"You've Got Jean Schulz" video interview

Jean Schulz, Charles Schulz's widow, talks about the Peanuts comic strip and the Charles M. Schulz Museum in a short video (1 1/2 minutes) from AOL titled "You've Got Jean Schulz."  The video also features some nice shots of the Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa, CA.

"Linus gets new voice" article in the Denton Record-Chronicle

The Denton Record-Chronicle in Texas published an interview with Austin Lux, who performed the voice of Linus in the new animated Peanuts special, Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown, which airs Thursday November 24 and Friday December 16 on FOX.  Read the interview on the Denton Record-Chronicle's website.

November 23, 2011

Peanuts TV reminders for Thanksgiving

Here's a summary of the television shows of possible interest to Peanuts fans that are on this Thanksgiving and the following days.  All times Eastern/Pacific (although note that the Macy's Parade starts at 9 AM in every time zone).

Thursday November 24

9:00 AM - 12 Noon — NBC — Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Featuring an appearance by the Snoopy as the Flying Ace balloon.
The new Peanuts special, focusing on Linus and his attachment to his blanket.  Can Linus learn to give up his blanket when his disapproving grandmother comes to visit?  We recommend that you tune into this new special when it begins, even though it overlaps with A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving; see our earlier post for our reasoning and more information.
8:00 - 9:00 PM — ABC — A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
The classic 1973 special.
A retrospective look at the floats, balloons, and performances that have appeared in the Parade over the years. We can't promise that Snoopy will be featured in the special, but you wouldn't think they'd leave him out...
Friday November 25

7:00 - 9:00 PM — ABC Family — A Boy Named Charlie Brown
9:00 - 11:00 PM — ABC Family — Snoopy Come Home
The first two Peanuts theatrical movies.
Saturday November 26

2:00 - 4:00 PM — ABC Family — A Boy Named Charlie Brown
4:00 - 6:00 PM — ABC Family — Snoopy Come Home
The first two Peanuts theatrical movies, again.
We wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving!

November 22, 2011

The Flying Ace joins Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade for sixth time

Don't forget that in addition to the two Peanuts specials airing Thanksgiving evening, in the morning there's the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, where Snoopy will be joining the parade again in his guise as the World War I Flying Ace.

2011 is the sixth consecutive year the Flying Ace balloon has been part of the Macy's Parade, and in fact Snoopy has been in the Parade more times than any other character — 36 years total, according to this article from USA Today — since he first joined the Parade in 1968.

The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade will be broadcast from 9-12 AM, Thursday, November 24, on NBC (the broadcast time is the same in all time zones).

You might also want to check out The 85th Anniversary Of The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade special that airs on NBC Thanksgiving evening from 10-11 PM (Eastern/Pacific). The special is a retrospective look at the floats, balloons, and performances that have appeared in the Parade over the years. We can't promise that Snoopy will be featured in the special, but you wouldn't think they'd leave him out, would you?

ABC announces December 2011 broadcast dates for Peanuts Christmas specials

The classic 1965 special A Charlie Brown Christmas will be broadcast on ABC twice, first on Monday, December 5 from 8:00 - 8:30 PM, and again on Thursday, December 15 from 8:00 - 9:00 PM (all times Eastern/Pacific).

It's important to note that the December 5th broadcast of A Charlie Brown Christmas will be edited to fit into a half-hour time slot; ABC is using it as a lead-in to their new Prep & Landing 2 special, which is airing in the following half-hour.

If you want to see the unedited version of the Peanuts special, you should wait to tune in until the December 15 broadcast, when A Charlie Brown Christmas has a full hour time slot and will run unedited together with a Prep & Landing short and Charlie Brown's Christmas Tales.

(This isn't the first time ABC has broadcast the edited version of A Charlie Brown Christmas first and then the unedited one later; they did the same thing in 2009 when the first Prep & Landing special aired. Considering ABC received quite a few complaints from viewers who didn't realize an unedited version of the special was airing a week later, it's a little surprising they've chosen to do the same thing again.)

And in addition to the original Christmas special, the 2003 special I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown will also be airing twice on ABC in December. The first broadcast will be Monday, December 12 from 8:00 - 9:00 PM, and the second on Thursday, December 22 from 9:00 - 10:00 PM (all times Eastern/Pacific).

Happy New Year, Charlie Brown to air Thursday, December 29, 2011 on ABC

ABC will be showing the 1986 special Happy New Year, Charlie Brown on Thursday, December 29 from 8:00 - 9:00 PM (Eastern/Pacific). Since the show is scheduled for an hour time slot, it will most likely be accompanied by a slightly edited broadcast of the special She's a Good Skate, Charlie Brown, as it was in 2010.

November 21, 2011

"Happy birthday, Charles Schulz" article in Santa Rosa Press-Democrat

In anticipation of Charles Schulz's birthday (November 26), the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat — the daily newspaper of the town in California where Charles Schulz lived much of his life — published a nice article about Charles Schulz, how he celebrated birthdays, his legacy, and the Schulz Museum.  You can read the article, titled "Happy birthday, Charles Schulz," at the Press-Democrat's website.

November 18, 2011

A Charlie Brown Christmas goes interactive with new digital storybook app for tablets

This week Loud Crow Interactive released an interactive digital storybook app based on the classic TV special A Charlie Brown Christmas.  The app features artwork, animations, music, and dialog from the classic television special and is narrated by Peter Robbins, who performed the voice of Charlie Brown in the 1965 TV show.

Features of the A Charlie Brown Christmas app include touching and dragging objects to make them spring to life, playing Schroeder's piano, finger painting with the gang, caroling with the Peanuts choir and unlocking decorations to decorate your very own Charlie Brown Christmas Tree.  The app is available for the iPhone/iPad/iPod touch, the Barnes & Noble Nook, and other Android devices.

We've spent some time playing with the app and it's very cute, very entertaining, and very faithful to the original special, with lots of nice little touches - we expect fans of all ages will love this app.  Kids, in particular, will probably love poking and prodding at all the characters and scenes.

Visit Loud Crow Interactive's website to see more screenshots and a video of the new app, and links to purchase the various versions of it.  The A Charlie Brown Christmas interactive storybook app costs $6.99 and can be purchased from the Apple App Store, the Android Market, or the Amazon Appstore.

Loud Crow says the A Charlie Brown Christmas app is the first in a series of digital book apps based on classic Peanuts specials that they're creating in conjunction with Peanuts Worldwide (read the full press release).

Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown airs in Canada on Thursday, November 24, 2011

The new Peanuts special, Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown, will be broadcast in Canada on CTV on Thursday, November 24, 2011 from 8:30-9:30 PM (Eastern/Pacific).

(That's exactly the same time as the US broadcast on FOX.)

For more information about Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown, see our previous post about the show.

November 17, 2011

Help out the Peanuts gang in the new Snoopy's Street Fair game for iPad and iPhone

Do you wish you could spend more time with the Peanuts gang on your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad?  If so, you may enjoy the new game Snoopy's Street Fair from Beeline Games.  In the game, you help the Peanuts gang build and organize a street fair in order to raise funds for new baseball uniforms.  The street fair includes booths such as Sally's Leomonade Stand and Lucy's Psychiatric Help stand (of course!), among others.  Snoopy's part of the game too, although his antics may hinder as much as help.

Snoopy's Street Fair will be a "freemium" game - it's a free download, and if you spend enough time playing the game, you can unlock the game's features, such as additional Peanuts characters, costumes for Snoopy, mini-games, and Peanuts comic strips for free... or you can also make in-app purchases to progress faster.

For more information about Snoopy's Street Fair:
Snoopy's Street Fair is now available from the US app store and the Canadian app store.  So far, only an version for iOS deveices has been announced.

November 15, 2011

Sculptor's giant Charlie Brown sweater on display at Schulz Museum

Sculptor Suzanne Morlock used 10-foot long PVC pipes as needles and mylar as the material to knit this giant Charlie Brown sweater (13 feet high!) The sweater was originally displayed in Morlock's home of Jackson, Wyoming, and is now on display at the Charles M. Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa, CA through January 2012. For more information about the creation and story behind the sculpture, read the article on the Sierra Club website.

(Thanks to Raymond Flournoy for bringing the article to our attention. Photo by Suzanne Morlock.)

November 14, 2011

Security for the ages

Charles M. Schulz was pleased — and rightly so — when "security blanket" became such a standard part of the English language that it even entered dictionaries.
Now Linus' favorite accessory has been accorded an even greater honor: The blanket — as in a child's item of comfort and security — has just been inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame.
This institution is found within the Strong, a children's and cultural museum in upstate New York. The blanket — or, more specifically, the security blanket — takes its place of pride alongside toy classics such as the teddy bear, the bicycle, Barbie and Jack-in-the-Box.
You can find out more by reading the complete Associated Press story, which appeared in the Detroit Free Press, among many other papers.

November 13, 2011

A Boy Named Charlie Brown and Snoopy Come Home on ABC Family, Friday, November 25 & Saturday November 26, 2011

The cable channel ABC Family's annual broadcast of the first two Peanuts theatrical movies will be on Friday, November 25, 2011. A Boy Named Charlie Brown will air from 7-9 PM, and Snoopy Come Home will air from 9-11 PM.

Update: The two movies will also be shown on ABC Family on Saturday, November 26.  A Boy Named Charlie Brown will air from 2-4 PM, and Snoopy Come Home will air from 4-6 PM.

(All broadcast times Eastern/Pacific.)

"Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown" exhibit visits Lake Charles, Louisiana

If you live near the City of Lake Charles in Louisiana, get into the holiday spirit by visiting the exhibit "Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown" at the Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center. This traveling exhibit, created by the Charles M. Schulz Museum, celebrates the Peanuts gang's long association with Christmas. It features 50 Peanuts daily and Sunday comic strips, over 50 vintage Peanuts-themed seasonal novelties, and a video featuring Charles Schulz, producer Lee Mendelson, and animator/director Bill Melendez detailing the making of the A Charlie Brown Christmas television special.

Related activities at the Historic City Hall will include a Christmas card workshop, a Santa letter writing station, and Christmas trees decorated by local organizations.

"Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown" will be at Lake Charles' Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center from November 5, 2011 through January 28, 2012, and admission is free. See this exhibit listing for more information.

November 10, 2011

"Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Cakes" on Food Network Challenge! Sunday November 13

This Sunday, November 13, the Food Network channel's show Challenge!, where chefs compete at a cooking task in order to win prizes, will have the theme "Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Cakes." Here's the episode's description:

Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the rest of the gang are making their debut in cake. Four of the top cake designers in America are celebrating Thanksgiving by making cakes inspired by one of the most popular holiday specials of all time, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. Plus, a special surprise is in store for the competitors that will make this holiday unforgettable.

The episode will be broadcast on the Food Network channel Sunday, November 13 from 8-9 PM, and repeats Monday November 14 from 3-4 AM and Saturday November 19 from 3-4 PM. (All times Eastern/Pacific.)

November 8, 2011

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving also to air Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 24, 2011

ABC has finally announced a broadcast date for A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. It will air Thursday, November 24, 2011 from 8:00-9:00 PM (Eastern/Pacific) on ABC. As before, the classic special will air unedited, and be followed by a shortened version of This is America, Charlie Brown: The Mayflower Voyagers.

Since FOX previously announced that they'll be showing the new Peanuts special Happiness is a Warm Blanket from 8:30-9:30, unfortunately this means that two Peanuts specials will be airing in overlapping time slots on Thanksgiving evening. What's a fan do to?

First, you could (and perhaps should) tune into Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown when it starts at 8:30.  Happiness is a Warm Blanket is really quite good, and strong ratings for it may encourage the production of more new Peanuts TV specials.  Plus, Happiness is a Warm Blanket is new, whereas it's probably a safe bet that you've seen A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving before - and you can catch it next year (or watch it on DVD or most likely

Or, you could quickly switch over to Happiness is a Warm Blanket as soon as A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving finishes.  Even though Thanksgiving is listed as running from 8:00-9:00 PM, really the special will only be on air until about 8:32 PM (then there's a commercial break and The Mayflower Voyagers). So you'd only miss the first few minutes of Happiness is a Warm Blanket... but those minutes set the scene for the show and are worth watching.

Finally, Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown will be repeated on Friday December 16, 2011 on FOX, so there will be another chance to catch it in its entirety... but FOX will probably pay more attention to the ratings for the first broadcast.

Despite the misfortune of both specials airing on the same night, Peanuts fans should count themselves lucky to have two different specials on broadcast TV to choose from.  The fact that one special was made in 1974 and the other was made 37 years later, in 2011, is a testament to the staying power of the Peanuts gang.

New special Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown will be broadcast Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 24, 2011

The new Peanuts TV special, Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown, will have its premiere TV broadcast on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 24, 2011.

The FOX network has announced that Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown will air 8:30-9:30 PM (Eastern/Pacific) as part of a block of animated specials (including an "Ice Age" and "Simpsons" special). This is the first time a Peanuts TV special has aired on the FOX network; and though Happiness is a Warm Blanket was released on DVD and Blu-ray earlier this year, this will be its first time on broadcast television.

Here's Fox's PR summary of the special:

The Peanuts gang is back and ready to help Linus (Austin Lux) break away from his childhood security blanket. The stakes are high as Linus learns his grandmother is coming to visit, and he must decide whether or not to dispose of his most cherished possession. In an effort to help Linus kick his habit, Charlie Brown (Trenton Rogers), Lucy (Grace Rolek) and even Snoopy pitch in to help. Lucy is quick to attempt her amateur psychiatric skills, while Snoopy employs the age old drag-and-run method. Despite all attempts, Linus eventually learns that security is a valuable quality in life and everyone is entitled to their own version of a security blanket.
For even more information about Happiness is a Warm Blanket, see the Peanuts TV & Video Page.

FOX will repeat Happiness is a Warm Blanket on Friday, December 16 from 8:00-9:00 PM (Eastern/Pacific).

If you're thinking, "but what about A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving?," see our entry about that show's broadcast.

In Canada, CTV will be also be showing Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown on Thursday November 24 from 8:30-9:30 PM (Eastern/Pacific).

November 5, 2011

Charlie Brown Christmas Music Gets 'New' Life

Nearly half a century after its release in December 1965, Vince Guaraldi’s soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Christmas remains a steady seller; indeed, it has become one of the most popular holiday albums ever produced. No surprise, then, that other jazz artists have attempted to ride that success. Cyrus Chestnut covered the entire album in 2000, and now Nashville-based pianist Lori Medhem has released Christmas Is Coming: A Tribute to A Charlie Brown Christmas (Green Hill GHD5705).

Mechem’s album isn’t quite a true cover; she skips a few of Guaraldi’s shorter tracks — notably the children’s vocal on “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing” — and supplements with one additional Peanuts theme and three more holiday standards. The result works best when Mechem resists the impulse to slavishly copy Guaraldi’s original charts; at times — as with her handling of “O Tannenbaum” and “Skating” — her keyboard flourishes are too close to Guaraldi’s work, down to some of his single-note affectations.

In most cases, though, Mechem’s own personality and style emerge, particularly in the improv-laden bridges for “Linus and Lucy” and “Christmas Is Coming.” And although she once again follows Guaraldi’s piano lead at the beginning of “My Little Drum,” her quartet — bassist Roger Spencer (Mechem’s husband), guitarist Andy Reiss and drummer Chris Brown — lays down a pleasant, samba-hued percussive backdrop that gives the song a fresh atmosphere.

The “extras” include a lovely, lyrical cover of “Snowfall”; a gentle arrangement of “Winter Wonderland,” with percussive sleigh bells elements; and a playful handling of “The Christmas Waltz” that opens with a piano solo and then blossoms into a swinging toe-tapper that boasts solid work by the entire quartet. The additional Peanuts selection is a peppy arrangement of the "Charlie Brown Theme."

Mechem previously recorded half a dozen of these tunes on her 2005 holiday album, Brazilian Christmas, but the instrumentation and arrangements are new here: more of a traditional jazz combo approach, with (thankfully!) no strings. Very pleasant listening (although — of course! — no substitute for Guaraldi's original album).

November 2, 2011

Macy's Snoopy Balloon Steals Our Hearts in 'Tower Heist'

Heads up, Peanuts fans: The caper comedy Tower Heist, which opens nationwide this Friday, November 4, features a key sequence that takes place during the annual Macy's Thanksgiving parade ... and includes plenty of glimpses of Snoopy's massive WWI Flying Ace balloon. Better still, Snoopy's balloon actually figures in the plot, and gets a scripted shout-out from Ben Stiller. Get your tickets early!
(And if you'd like to read 5CP site guru Derrick Bang's review of the film, check out his movie blog here. Remember, he's a film critic in real life.)

Peanuts #0 comic book arrives in comic stores

The preview issue of the new monthly Peanuts comic book series arrived in comic book stores on Wednesday, November 2.

Peanuts #0 features "a new original story and supplementary material that will provide a sneak peek at the series launching in January."  Visit
Comic Book Resources to see a preview of some of the pages.

While it's probably simplest (and cheapest) to get it from your local comic book shop, you can order the comic book from the
Boom Studios website.
The new series of Peanuts comic books are put together by the same team who produced the well-regarded graphic novel version of Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown.

November 1, 2011

Watch It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown on Hulu

If you missed this year's TV broadcast of It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown - or just want to watch it again - and don't have it on DVD, you can watch it streaming over the Internet from .

Update: The show is no longer available on this year; but it'll probably be back next year.