OPINION: The True Meaning of Christmas, and Why It Makes Charlie Brown a Winner Every Year
This morning, I went to Sunday School at the Hayworth Wesleyan Church in High Point. I was a few minutes late of course, but the moment I walked in, Carol Clark – my Sunday School teacher – was reciting a verse from the Book of Genesis. That verse? Well that’s easy, it’s the story of the Nativity of Jesus in Luke 2:1-20. I’ll let Linus here recite the verse for you…
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That verse and the way Linus recited it was what made the special the clip came from, A Charlie Brown Christmas, win the ratings every year. The special is based on the beloved Peanuts comic strip, and it has become one of the most beloved holiday specials in the country ever since it debuted on CBS on December 9, 1965. But, I bet you didn’t know that both CBS and the animator who produced did the special, Bill Melendez, were urging Peanuts creator Charles Schulz to cut that particular monologue because they thought it was too provocative. However, the speech ended up being in the special anyway, and it ended up being a timeless Christmas classic. It also talks about the over-commercialization of of the Christmas season, which I surprisingly agree with, but the overall theme is what the Christmas season is all about. That’s also why the special is rerun in the US with massive ratings success. On December 16, a rerun of A Charlie Brown Christmas on ABC earned more than 6.3 million viewers, 1.7 million of which were in the key 18-49 demographic. It even beat the stop-motion NBC holiday special, Elf: Buddy’s Musical, based on the 2003 film Elf (which only had 4.9 million viewers). Faith-based specials are still very popular here in the USA. Liberal Hollywood would want you to think otherwise with all the secular sex-filled and profane garbage they pass as entertainment today. Sex and profanity might sell in Hollywood, but wholesome family entertainment sells too. That’s why reruns of many Charlie Brown specials dominate the ratings during holidays, and it’s also why animated family movies from studios like Pixar and Disney dominate the box-office as well.
Odds are when The Peanuts Movie, a new Fox/Blue Sky Studios film celebrating the strip’s 65th anniversary, is released next November, it will take Hollywood by surprise. If people who want traditional family values back in Hollywood want to win the culture wars, they need to help the Peanuts gang succeed in theaters. There’s no doubt in my mind that audiences will see the film in droves though, a lot of family movies do very well at the box office according to an article Brent Bozell wrote back in 2010. That’s a fact I wish Hollywood would consider, because there is nothing more important than families being together, especially during the holidays. …And both the media and Hollywood well know that.