HE’S YOUR DOG, CHARLIE BROWN
MOVIE: **1/2 (out of 5)
DVD EXPERIENCE: *1/2 (out of 5)
BY KEVIN CARR
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
After releasing most of the Peanuts television special library, Warner Bros. is digging through the vault to find more remastered episodes to release on DVD. The latest is “He’s Your Dog, Charlie Brown,” which includes this half-hour episode along with “Life Is a Circus, Charlie Brown.” In “He’s Your Dog, Charlie Brown,” the kids in the neighborhood are fed up with Snoopy and demand that he go back to obedience school. However, when Snoopy treats it as a vacation at Peppermint Patty’s house, Charlie Brown must find a way to get him back home.
“Life Is a Circus, Charlie Brown” follows a similar plot line, in which Snoopy visits a traveling circus and ends up getting locked in one of the animal cages. After using his wily charms to become the star of the show, he must make a decision about the hard life on the rode and the demands of show business.
WHAT I LIKED
Like the “Scooby-Doo” series, I love the Peanuts specials. I remember as a kid scouring the TV Guide for the air date of the latest episode. And without DVRs (and having VCRs just recently coming on the market), it was something we watched live. I don’t particularly remember these specials, though I’m pretty sure I caught “Life Is a Circus, Charlie Brown” in its early broadcasts.
These two Peanuts specials are cute and fun, and they focus almost exclusively on Snoopy, who really became the break-out star of these shows. They’re definitely cute, and they’re something to share with your kids now that you’re all grown up. All the charm from the Peanuts specials are there, so you can enjoy them as installments in a greater series.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
Even though Snoopy became the de facto poster child for the Peanuts characters, I did miss the interaction with all the characters in these episodes. Snoopy is best used in the television specials as a walk-on element of comic relief. Too much of him is like having too much sugar in your coffee. It’s sweet and not unappealing, but it’s not as full bodied as it could be.
While these films were good and not as lackluster as “The Mayflower Voyagers” follow-up to the Thanksgiving special, they’re not the most memorable Peanuts shows.
Along with a slate of trailers, there’s a 25-minute documentary about the ice skating rink that Charles Schulz built. It’s a sweet story, but it seems pretty out-of-place in both theme and tone to the rest of the content on the disc.
WHO’S GOING TO LIKE THIS MOVIE
People who can’t get enough Snoopy.