Charlie Brown Great Pumpkin

October 28, 2011 by staff 

Charlie Brown Great Pumpkin, SNOOPY take flight for the first time as an ace of the First World War. Charlie Brown takes the match as rocks build up in your Halloween bag. And Linus being your patch while waiting for the Great Pumpkin powerful.

The scenes are so deeply moving and richly imagined: “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” still resonates Thursday, 45 years to the day after the holiday classic was released on CBS in high ratings. (The program airs tonight at 8 on ABC, followed by a bonus of “Peanuts” show.)

“Great Pumpkin” was released almost a year after the first animated “Peanuts” special – “A Charlie Brown Christmas” – the network executives were surprised to win the night and make more of a nation. (Half of all U.S. televisions were tuned to the first issue of “Christmas”).

Creator Charles “Sparky” Schulz, director-animator Bill Melendez and producer Lee Mendelson decided to choose another holiday for the special session. And the result, “Great Pumpkin,” Schulz largely satisfied.

“Sparky liked the Christmas show, but I really liked ‘The Great Pumpkin,’” says Mendelson Comic Riffs this week. “It was the culmination of the best animation and comic adaptation of the best possible way.” (Schulz, Mendelson and Melendez all received Emmy nominations for “Great Pumpkin”, including the Children program outstanding.)

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