Why “A Charlie Brown Christmas” Became An Instant Classic

A Charlie Brown Christmas / Facebook

A Charlie Brown Christmas debuted just 57 years ago on December 9th, 1965, and rose to become America’s favorite Christmas special.

The animated Christmas special paired with an innovative jazz soundtrack and a biblical message was said to be the main key factors of why it proved to be so successful and why its longevity still remains.

It has been played every year on television and has overwhelmingly become a staple that families watch every year during the holiday season.

When it first aired, its expectations for success were low with many CBS executives at the time being underwhelmed by the slow pace of its production, along with the network having a battle behind the scenes with “Peanuts” creator Charles M. Schulz over using a scene taken straight out of the New Testament.

In addition to that, the broadcasters at the time said that the animation was quirky, there was no laugh track, and the show didn’t use trained voices for the characters but instead use actual children to speak the voiceovers.

For example, the voice of Charlie Brown was 9-year-old Peter Robbins. Robbins recently passed away in January 2022 at the age of 65.

Even with all the battles that A Charlie Brown Christmas faced before its release, as soon as it hit the televisions in American homes, it was absolutely adored by the entire nation. 

According to FOX, Smithsonian Magazine said, “On Thursday, December 9, 1965, over 15 million households tuned in to judge for themselves. The reception would turn the special into a classic. CBS soon learned that nearly half of American television sets had watched what the network thought would be a flop.”

Still to this day, A Charlie Brown Christmas continues to warm the hearts of millions of people around the world each year.

The simple children’s cartoon with grade-school-age characters struggling with the very mature topic surrounding the real meaning of Christmas, on top of being richly jam-packed with American art, made it one of the most loved shows.

According to Apple TV+, they will be making A Charlie Brown Christmas available for FREE streaming from Thursday, Dec. 22 until Christmas Day so make sure you tune in to enjoy the good ol’ classic.

Watch The A Charlie Brown Christmas Trailer Below