Happy New Year, Charlie Brown! is a 1986 animated television special and the 30th entry in the Peanuts series. It is one of the best specials thus far.
All of the kids prepare for New Year’s Eve celebration while Charlie Brown has to read a book for homework. This is the entry that represents everything that is great about this property and I just loved how old-fashioned it was. Each and every character is well utilized here with Charlie Brown being the highlight which is refreshing as he’s been absent for a long time. His troubles with reading a long and boring book are relatable, but also quite funny at times.
I though this part was a bit excessive in torturing him as he missed seeing The Little Red-Haired Girl and Linus danced with her. But even though it was too much, it still felt like a traditional Peanuts special from yesteryear. I loved Linus and Lucy is as great as always. Of course Peppermint Patty is great and Sally is so funny with her Sweet Babboo. She and Linus constantly produce great laughs and this is no exception. The New Year’s Eve theme is so well realized and I wonder why they haven’t done it before. It is engaging, funny and filled with excellent storytelling and humor.