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  • Writer's pictureStephen Yanni

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965) - The Timeless Treasure of Christmas

Updated: Apr 9

Rating: ★★★★★(5/5 stars)

Released 12-09-1965

Watched 12-21-2023

Reviewed 12-26-2023

Watched on Apple TV+

"Isn't there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?"

"A Charlie Brown Christmas," the inaugural TV special based on the beloved "Peanuts" comic strip, is an absolute gem in the world of holiday specials. Despite its brief runtime of 25 minutes, this made-for-TV marvel warrants inclusion alongside classic movies due to its essential viewing status during the holiday season.

The special, first aired in 1965, has a timeless charm that transcends generations. Its simplicity, underscored by a jazz soundtrack that's become synonymous with the Christmas season, is its greatest strength. The story, centered around Charlie Brown's quest to find the true meaning of Christmas amidst the rampant commercialism, resonates deeply, offering a poignant message that's as relevant today as it was over five decades ago.

What makes this special stand out is the way it balances humor, warmth, and a touch of melancholy. The character of Charlie Brown, with his eternal sense of underdog vulnerability, is a relatable figure for many. His journey of self-discovery and the ultimate realization of what makes Christmas truly special is heartwarming.

The animation, though simple by today's standards, carries a nostalgic charm that complements the story beautifully. The voice acting, performed by actual children, adds an authenticity that is rarely captured in animated specials.

In conclusion, "A Charlie Brown Christmas" is not just a holiday special; it's a cultural icon. Its message of hope, friendship, and the true spirit of Christmas continues to resonate with audiences of all ages. It's a must-watch, deserving of its place in the pantheon of classic holiday entertainment.

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