Based on the legend of the Pied Piper, it stars Snoopy as the title character, who tries to rid the Peanuts' gang's hometown of mice by playing his concertina, in return for a year's supply of dog food.
The first Peanuts TV special to be formatted in wide-screen. See more »
Linus van Pelt:
I can't go through another night like last night again.
Can't I try and find you another substitute for something, Linus?
Linus van Pelt:
Would you give a starving dog a rubber bone?
[Snoopy kicks Charlie Brown]
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I must admit I was a bit dubious about this new special for it was the 1st one without the great and late Bill Melendez. It seems Lee Mendelson was not involved either, but Schulz' son was. This one stood out from all the other post-Schulz era specials for its '60s style. As a comic-strip fan I appreciate attention to detail. The "classic" effect obtained through the retro animation worked out pretty well, bringing some nostalgia. The story development was somewhat modern, deeper, beyond previous attempts, and yet kept all the action faithful to the Peanuts world and spirit. The gags were delightfully funny, they cracked me up quite a few times. I simply loved the use of one of the most famous Beethoven symphonies, but I won't spoil it for you. Not only the music, but the way they managed to create a matching animated treat, was indeed a creative highlight.
The color tones used according to mood, the "reaction" of some cards to Linus' feelings, and flashbacks to the very first specials truly shone.
The plot might not be complex. However, by using the well-known blanket attachment issues Linus has, they address the insecurity most of the other characters have, their human weakness, which is not to plainly be criticized, but rather accepted as a natural part of life.
Another remarkable element was the comeback of some old characters that had not gotten much attention over the years. Again, an interesting addition for all the fans, in an already captivating special that has enough quality potential to be considered an instant Peanuts classic.
Growing up was never as bittersweet, and as thoroughly enjoyable as doing it along Linus, Snoopy, good ol' Charlie Brown, and the rest of the gang!
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