Now you have to bear with me a little bit, because I’m gonna wax gooey about Peanuts. I whole-heartedly believe that Charles M. Schultz’ creation is one of the single most complete and wonderful works produced within fiction. The characters of Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus and everyone else are not only some of the most endearing, amusing and loveable characters ever brought to life, but the series which was made to adapt them to the screen in the early 80’s is one of the nicest, quaintest animations ever made. It had a huge impact on the way I watch cartoons, the way I interact with cartoons and my emotional sensitivity as a human beings.
Here is why it demands a faithful, realistic return, with as much of its original elements as possible.
1. No shortage of stories
Charles M Schultz wrote Peanuts for approximately 50 years- he made daily 3-to-4 panel comic strips with Sunday strips since 1952 as well- the Peanuts Complete Collection takes up a whopping 25 volumes- with this in mind, a reboot would never be short of inspiration, meaning that the stories which became so important to enthusiasts from the 50’s, 60’s and beyond could now be enjoyed by a generation of kids to whom written word just can’t compete with their choice of electronic media stimuli.
2. It’s Unbearably Human
I’m a sucker for kids programmes that really do some adult things- whether or not it’s just-slipped-past-the-censors dirty jokes or something altogether more touching, that kind of stuff will hook me right in. And Peanuts does this in spades- it’s a show about a boy and his silly beagle getting up to nonsense, but the depth of character to each of these children is remarkable- Charlie Brown and his friends explored the human condition in a way that wasn’t overt and made as laugh while it did so. It finds a way that’s accessible to kids and adults alike to make us think about ourselves without making us uncomfortable and that is something that should be cherished. The characters are charming, quaint and wonderfully human- they’re some of the best friends we’ll never have.
3. It’s the perfect time
There has been a significant enough gap now between the cessation of the original comic strip- as well as the syndication of the television programme, that there are a huge number of kids who are only peripherally aware of the existence of Charlie Brown and his dog Snoopy. The delightful Peanuts movie will hopefully garner some interest in the characters and would pave the way for a revisit to the fantastic original series- the characters have been around now just long enough that they’re ready to re-introduced to a new audience and a new generation- because the value they hold is priceless; whether he’s wearing a huge baseball cap on the pitch or (potentially long after I’m gone) he’s playing zero gravity football and Snoopy’s a hologram, the sentiment of the wonderful children Mr Schultz taught us to love will last forever.
The Peanuts Movie is out in cinemas nationwide 21st December