BOOTLEG FILES 744: “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” (1973 television production of the Off-Broadway musical).
LAST SEEN: On YouTube.
AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.
REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Most likely due to a problem with rights clearance.
CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Unlikely at this time.
One of the big entertainment stories this week was the announcement that the classic year-end holiday specials featuring the characters from Charles M. Schulz’s “Peanuts” comic strip will not be shown on broadcast television, but will instead be seen on a streaming service. Many fans of these productions were deeply disappointed, as these specials have been an integral part of the holiday season television line-up for decades. However, there is another television special based on “Peanuts” that has not been broadcast since its only offering 47 years ago. Continue reading →
BOOTLEG FILES 584: “How Did You Happen to Get Snoopy, Charlie Brown?” (2017 fan film based on the Charles M. Schulz characters).
LAST SEEN: It is on YouTube.
AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.
REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: The unauthorized use of copyright-protected characters.
CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Unlikely.
There has been so much talk about childhood bullying in recent years that it is difficult not to recognize the role that Charles M. Schulz played in encouraging this negative environment. Yes, the creator of the long-running and beloved “Peanuts” comic strip used the concept of casual bullying as a light comedy theme focused on the character Charlie Brown. But let’s face it, the idea of a young boy constantly being harassed and insulted for his alleged stupidity, lack of personality, lack of athletic ability and overall clumsiness is not exactly hilarious in principle – and the fact that Charlie Brown’s tormentors are never punished or are very rarely remorseful for their malice is equally problematic.
I wish Hollywood would display this much respect and restraint with Dr. Seuss as they have with Charles Shulz. As a hardcore fan of Peanuts, I was initially very weary about how the series would be treated for a more mainstream modern audience. Thankfully my fears were laid to rest watching “The Peanuts Movie,” which isn’t just an adaptation of the original series, but is also a love letter to boot. Fans of the series will love how Steve Martino treats Charlie Brown and his world, opting for a wholesome respectful film, rather than ramming in pop culture references, and a sugary pop soundtrack. There’s nothing remotely cloying or obnoxious about “The Peanuts Movie,” and the new animation format even works in the series favor.
While the rest of America is celebrating the resurgence of the Peanuts with “The Peanuts Movie,” those that want an education in to the appeal of the series can pick up Warner’s latest release. While the holiday series from the Peanuts are typically timeless and quite iconic, the Peanuts has also earned themselves plenty of Emmy nominations and a few wins with some non-holiday themed Charlie Brown specials that are also quite good in their own right. Warner releases over four hours of Charlie Brown specials on a two DVD set that is so worth the pick up. Especially if you’re a hardcore Peanuts fans like yours truly.