It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown turns 50


The classic American television program It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown first aired on October 27, 1966. And old pal, these last 50 years have been great for the holiday classic.

It speaks volumes when a piece of work remains entirely undated, even five decades after it’s release. The Peanuts shows and films never spoke down to children, but directly to them, and it has made for a fine body of work that is still charming, even to adults. From the music to the various plots and subplots to the excellent jokes (“I got a rock.”), It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is certain to be around for many more years to come.

I have an extreme personal attachment to this show that started really late in my life, actually. While I loved it as a child, it wasn’t until the first autumn I lived away from home that I really grew my love for it. During those first few years, I had a series of unfortunate personal tragedies in my life. Like a warm blanket, I always turned to the Great Pumpkin to help me through things.

Heck, I own two copies of the thing on DVD. One to watch in the US and one for UK viewings. My poor husband has suffered through so many viewings, bless him. But despite being slow to understand the Peanuts gang charms, he has made the solid effort of actually suggesting we watch it.

I love that Charlie and Snoopy will always be there. I love that Vince Guaraldi’s score still sounds like perfection. When we think about autumn and everything that goes with the season: the pumpkins, the hot drinks and cold nights – none of it would ever be complete without watching this classic one more time.

Wicked Wednesday – It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

Are there people out there who still deeply care about Halloween even 12 days after?

I’m not sure if I want to know the answer, but it’s certainly a yes for me.

If there is one thing I do every year, it’s watch the classic “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.” Every year it’s the same 20-minute special filled with rocks, sheet ghost costumes and of course: a giant pumpkin patch. Even though the holiday has since passed, the DVD (the only one I have from back home) is still played regularly and even at odd moments over the course of the year. June included.

But there is something so sweet and special about this television special. Anything Charles Schultz or Bill Melendez waved their hands over, really, seems to have a bit of extra magic. Even from the first scene of the picking of the perfect pumpkin or the scene of Snoopy helping Charlie make the piles of leaves, and he little side story about the World War 1 flying ace is still hilarious (because who doesn’t want to see a beagle fight the Red Baron and get emotion to the tunes on Schroeder’s piano?). It might not be for everyone, but we all have something that is familiar and warm. I feel most comfortable (and comforted) watching the cartoon, and I suppose that’s why it will alway feel special.

People give up on Halloween too easily. When can costume parties and pumpkins be an all-year treat? Well, even if Halloween isn’t for you (or even if the idea of a year-round fancy dress seems a bit excessive), it is very difficult to deny that Vince Guaraldi’s “Great Pumpkin Waltz” is one of the most beautiful tunes to listen to all autumn.