When Charlie Brown complains about the overwhelming materialism that he sees amongst everyone during the Christmas season, Lucy suggests that he become director of the school Christmas pageant. Charlie Brown accepts, but is a frustrating struggle. When an attempt to restore the proper spirit with a forlorn little fir Christmas tree fails, he needs Linus’ help to learn the meaning of Christmas.
- Frieda (voice): Ann Altieri
- Schroeder / Shermy (voice): Chris Doran
- Violet (voice): Sally Dryer
- Snoopy (voice): Bill Melendez
- Patty (voice): Karen Mendelson
- Pig-Pen (voice): Geoffrey Ornstein
- Charlie Brown (voice): Peter Robbins
- Lucy Van Pelt (voice): Tracy Stratford
- Sally Brown (voice): Cathy Steinberg
- Linus Van Pelt (voice): Christopher Shea
- Producer: Bill Melendez
- Writer: Charles M. Schulz
- Executive Producer: Lee Mendelson
- Music: Vince Guaraldi
- Peter McGinn: Another one of those classic old children’s Christmas shows I first watched who knows when, but probably when it first came out, and have seen a couple dozen more times since then.
When dealing with a show I loved as a kid, I refuse to try to separate the adult viewer and rate it more harshly. The memory and the childish feelings I had for it are wrapped up in its value for me. For example, I am an atheist, so the nativity story doesn’t carry a religious message for me, but I can appreciate its function in the story, and I read a lot of other fictional mythical origin stories without being cynical.
It is funny that our minds connect the jazz theme with Christmas, when it is, well, jazz. Also an oddity that Bill Melendez was the producer, director and voice (such as it was) for Snoopy. They used children for a lot of the voices, rather than adults simulating child voices.
It would be interesting to learn how children nowadays respond to seeing this old show for the first time, after being exposed to many other modern shows and animation techniques, video games, etc.