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DVD Review: I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown

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The Peanuts Gang has been around for a very long time, entertaining generations of children with the simplistic animations and "squawk talking" teachers and adults. I, myself, as a child, remember waiting with heightened anticipation for the holidays to roll around, just to be able to veg out in front of the TV to watch Charlie Brown and the gang. Whether it was Halloween, Thanksgiving, Valentine's Day or Christmas, I grew up dearly loving Peanuts. As an adult, watching the gang and their antics brings about great memories and ones that I am blessed to share now with my own children.

Many of the the Peanuts episodes focus on the woes of Charlie Brown, whether it be his secret love for the little red-haired girl, trouble with sassy Peppermint Patty or any other trials and tribulations of an adolescent boy. However, in I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown, the focus is on Rerun, blanket-toting Linus's and not-so-cheery Lucy's younger brother. In all honesty, I cannot remember Rerun from past episodes of Charlie Brown, but with my memory, that's not so rare. I did, however, greatly enjoy getting to know this little man through this episode, as he goes about satisfying his deep desire for a dog all his own. It's not easy being a younger sibling and often times being cast aside as a playmate. What a better companion than one's very own dog? This is what Rerun dreams obsessively for and when he realizes the great joy Charlie Brown's dog Snoopy brings, Rerun is even more determined to get a dog, despite his mother's objections.

After realizing that Charlie Brown will never give up Snoopy, Rerun asks Snoopy to invite his cousin, Spike, for a visit. This brings about a hope and unending determination on Rerun's part to adopt Spike. However, Rerun has no clue just what he is in for with Spike!

I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown is a delightful and fun addition to any family's holiday viewing lineup. If anyone else's family is like mine, just because a movie has a Christmas or holiday theme to it, does not mean it will not be watched, periodically, throughout the year. The innocence and appeal of Charles Schulz's beloved Peanuts characters will live on long throughout future generations. These are timeless classics to enjoy year around and I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown is a perfect addition to any family's viewing library.

In this particular edition, the film has been remastered and brings a much sharper and "new" look and sound to the viewing experience. I was quite impressed with the results. With remastered editions, the results can often vary, in my experience. Also included in this edition of I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown are a couple of fun special features that add to the delight of the DVD. There is an additional story episode titled "Happy New Year, Charlie Brown" and a fun featurette titled "Sibling Rivalry: Growing Up Van Pelt," in which the creation of Rerun comes to be.

All in all, I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown is a delightful, fun, and enjoyable movie for the entire family. Myself, my seven-year-old daughter and three-year-old son have enjoyed watching it several times and I know it will be a family favorite.

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About April Pohren