‘A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving’ First Premieres on This Day in 1973

by Jonathan Howard
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The holiday season is upon us and Thanksgiving is going to get us started. It was this day in 1973 when A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving first premiered. For 48 years, the cartoon has joined the other Peanuts classics in the hearts and minds of Americans all over the country.

Of course, nothing can ever go right for poor Charlie Brown. Whether it is buying a sickly Christmas tree or serving peanut butter sandwiches, jelly beans, and popcorn as a Thanksgiving feast. However, as usual, the Peanuts gang realizes what is truly important. Friends, family, and loved ones. Although, a turkey would have been nice, huh?

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving won an Emmy in 1974 and was the third holiday special based on the Peanuts comic strip. Everyone knows the wonderful comics that Charles M. Schulz wrote that have graced newspapers for decades. It starred Todd Barbee as the voice of Charlie Brown with Peter Robbins providing the screaming parts for the character. Then we have Robin Kohn as Lucy, Stephen Shea as Linus, Hilary Momberger as Sally, and Christopher DeFaria as Peppermint Patty. Also, Jimmy Ahrens played Marcie, Robin Reed as Franklin with Bill Melendez taking the parts of Snoopy and Woodstock.

Check out this old advertisement along with some screenshots of the special from RetroNews on Twitter. A whole lotta nostalgia here.

Originally premiering on CBS the show played every year from 1973-1989 with the exceptions of 82, 83, and 88. Eventually, The Disney Channel along with Nickelodeon played the show through the 1990s. It would be in 2001 when ABC would pick up the special and run it every year until 2019. Now, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving along with the rest of the Peanuts catalog are owned by AppleTV+

Watch ‘A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving’ November 21

For those hoping to catch the holiday special for free this year, the show will be broadcast on PBS as well as PBS Kids. Just as they did last year, AppleTV+ is allowing the special to be aired on the public channel. Viewers can tune in tomorrow night, November 21, at 7:30 PM ET.

As we head into Thanksgiving week, that means that the Christmas season is about to start in full force as well. While some have already started to decorate and celebrate, the rest of us will be catching up after we recover from the turkey hangover Friday morning. A Charlie Brown Christmas is set to also air on PBS and PBS for one night later this year on December 19.

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is a piece of Americana art, really. It’s great to see it air on PBS for so many to see. Viewers should keep up with us here at Outsider to catch dates for other holiday specials.

Outsider.com