‘It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown’ Returns To Public TV After a Year Away

by Taylor Cunningham

Last year, Apple TV+ snatched all of the classic Charlie Brown holiday movies from network stations. And viewers were furious. The streaming platform tried to appease the hoard of angry Peanuts fans by airing the films free during select dates—but that wasn’t enough to make everyone happy. So Apple decided to right its wrong by allowing PBS to broadcast the remaining beloved classics. And this year, the Peanuts Halloween special will be available too.

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown will air this month on local PBS stations. The decision came after the outrage that ensued when the Halloween movie was not available for non-subscribers in 2020. The film had been broadcasted on network channels for 54 years before Apple acquired rights to the Peanuts characters. So it had become a major viewing tradition for families across the country.

Once fans were deprived of It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, they made headlines with a Change.org petition that demanded justice for Charlie and his gang of friends.

“For over 50 years, we have celebrated the holidays with the airings of the Peanuts holiday specials on TV – first on CBS, then on ABC,” wrote the petition founder Michael Nebbia. “To our shock and dismay, last night it was announced that Apple had swiped the football from us and claimed the specials for their Apple TV platform, leaving us devoted fans who have grown up with Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang in the dark, unable to watch.”

The petition gained over 266K signatures. And because fans showed so much force and devotion, Apple TV+ decided to let PBS air the rest of the holiday movies. And this year, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown will also be available for free.

How to Watch All of the ‘Peanuts’ Holiday Movies This Year

For all you Outsiders who have the $4.99 monthly Apple TV+ subscription, the mega streamer still owns the rights to the Peanuts films. So you can always watch the movies that way. Everyone else can tune into their local PBS network on the select dates below.

  • Sunday, Oct. 24 at 7:30 p.m. ET on PBS and PBS Kids: It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
  • Sunday, Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. ET on PBS and PBS Kids: A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
  • Sunday, Dec. 19 at 7:30 p.m. ET on PBS and PBS Kids: A Charlie Brown Christmas

In 2020 The Charlie Brown Christmas Album Hit the Billboard’s Top 10 List Fir the First Time Ever

Last year, the beloved A Charlie Brown Christmas album made it to Billboard’s top ten for the first time since its release in 1965. The soundtrack dropped alongside the classic Peanuts Christmas movie. And it took 55 years to get the credit it deserves.

In 1987, the album did make it to Billboard’s Top Holiday Albums chart. And in 2007, it peaked at number two. But it wasn’t until 2009 that the soundtrack made it onto the Billboard 200. And then it finally breached the top 10 in 2020.