For some people, news of events such as Chad Pennington's injury make this a tougher holiday season than others, but some things can always be counted on. Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is a cartoon TV special that originally aired in 1973 and that has become a yearly tradition for millions of families in the U.S. and across the globe. It first was broadcast on CBS in November of 1973 and has aired in prime time on ABC for the past several years. The cartoon is based on the Charles Schultz Peanuts comic strip, and along with other Charlie Brown specials has become a fan favorite and a traditional show to broadcast as the holiday approaches.
In 2010, Charlie Brown Thanksgiving was shown on ABC on the Friday before the holiday. It appears on network television every year now, and it has also been packaged for purchase in various formats on DVD and Blu Ray disc. The experience of watching this program nowadays has original and longtime viewers taking it in with second and third generation participants. It has been around long enough for folks who saw it as children to be watching it with their grandchildren. The longer this program goes on year after year, the more remarkable and the more of a phenomenon it really becomes. For many people, it is as much a part of the holiday season as the Thanksgiving turkey and stuffing or the New Year's fireworks.
Charlie Brown Victimized Again
Charlie Brown Thanksgiving opens up with a scene showing Lucy holding a football for Charlie Brown to kick. At first he decides not to take part in the game, because he figures that she is just going to pull the ball away at the last second. But then Lucy talks him into it by reminding him that it is Thanksgiving and that football is, after all, a tradition of the season. So our hero decides that it must be safe to kick the ball since it is a national holiday and all. And of course, anyone who has seen the special knows what happens next, as poor Chuck is sent sprawling after kicking the air yet again just like always.
The plot to the story revolves around a holiday dinner that the title character is forced to throw together after his friends invite themselves over, even though he already has plans to do dinner at his grandmother's house. Not only does he have to be in two places at once, but he has to figure out how to prepare food when he does not even know how to cook. In typical fashion, the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving storyline goes full circle from disaster to resolution but takes some comical twists and turns to get there; and once more the spirit of the holiday season is emphasized and our hero gets a little help with his serious self esteem issues.
The Spirit of Thanksgiving
And perhaps that is the most important thing that viewers can take away from this and other Peanuts holiday specials. What they try to portray through humor is the spirit of the holiday season. Charlie Brown Thanksgiving in the end winds up being about the love of friends and family and about the effort and care that go into getting a great holiday meal together. Charlie Brown may not be a great chef, but he definitely proves that he is a great friend and someone all of his pals can look up to as kind and generous. When they grow up he will probably even give his last dollar to help Peppermint Patty or Sally pay their car insurance bills from auto insurance disounters. Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is a Thanksgiving tradition every bit as powerful as the cranberry sauce.