Peanuts Specials

DVD Review: You’re Not Elected Charlie Brown – You’ll Remember It When You See It

Written by Charles M. Schulz
Directed by Bill Melendez

The Peanuts gang is back in this 1972 television production centering around elections. The characters I grew up with are all represented here, and this special is one that’s pretty good. It doesn’t have the notoriety that A Charlie Brown Christmas or It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown has, but it really shouldn’t have ended up as obscure as it is.

Sally announces she’s not going to school again. Charlie Brown asks her what’s wrong and she hems and haws until he finally gets it out of her that she can’t get her locker open. He promises to help and ends up the subject of Sally’s show and tell that day.

On the way to his own class, he comes across the gang gathered around a sign inviting students to run for Student Body President. Linus thinks Charlie Brown should run, but Charlie Brown isn’t so sure. Lucy says she’ll take a poll. The results say there is no way he will win.

Sally proposes that Linus run. Lucy takes another poll, that she manages to skew just a wee bit, and announces it 99% certain that if Linus ran, he would win.

Soon Snoopy and Woodstock are making signs, and all the gang is working together to get Linus elected. When his opponent makes a poor showing at a school assembly, Linus seems like a shoo-in. He promises to make the lockers a height everyone can reach along with others that he pretty much has no way to deliver on. Seems he’s become the “perfect” politician.

Then, Linus decides to speak about the Great Pumpkin…

You’re Not Elected, Charlie Brown is a good classic cartoon. It has the look and feel of other Peanuts specials. The music is terrific as well and includes the debut of Snoopy as “Joe Cool” in a sequence at school to a great jazz piece.

Despite the fact that it was made so long go, it holds up well. My kids were as interested in it as they are other cartoons and really enjoyed viewing it. I didn’t find anything in it that was specific to the time period that they didn’t understand. The animation may not be as spiffy as today’s CGI with all the fancy bells and whistles, but the static backgrounds seem to suit the simple tale being told.

This really brought back memories for me of being so excited as a child whenever I would see a listing for any Peanuts special in the television lineup. It’s not one I remembered off the bat, but once I viewed it I knew I had seen it before. Yet, I enjoyed it as much as I ever could have.

Peanuts DVDs are worth having in a collection for both young and old. This classic on DVD is wonderful even if it’s not one of those that stands out when you think of the specials you watched as a child.