Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Favorite Fictional Character --- Linus Van Pelt

One of my favorite Halloween movies to watch, the one I can't miss no matter what, is It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.  I've loved the movie (TV special) since I was a kid and Halloween never feels the same without it.  My only beef with the movie is that instead of Charlie's name in the title, it should have been Linus' name.  Linus Van Pelt is the real hero of the movie.

I think of all the characters in the Peanuts universe, Linus Van Pelt was the one I always seemed to gravitate towards.  Charlie, as adorable as he is, always seemed a little too whiny for my taste and I never got the Snoopy/Woodstock fascination my mother had.  Now Pig Pen would come in a close second but that's only because I liked all the dirt floating around him.

What I like most about Linus is his intellect.  He is by far the smartest of the group and isn't afraid to show that side of him to the others.  He never rubs it in their face but Linus seems to have a mind capable of exploring deeper subjects, including philosophy, history, and religion.  For some reason I thought all kids should be like him and I never failed to live up to his example.  Which by the way, totally annoyed my mom when I would open up my mouth and put my two cents into what ever was being discussed.  I got so bad I would ask my mom a question I knew the answer to because I wanted to let everyone know I was smarter than them.  Thankfully I grew out of that phase pretty quickly, but the blanket thing took a little longer.

Now my blanket wasn't blue like Linus' was.  Instead it was a white blanket with Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy, and Pluto at a county fair.  They were eating ice cream cones and there was even a Ferris Wheel on there.  I loved that blanket and for a while, like Linus, never felt secure without it.  It took on properties of it's own and I was heartbroken when my mom finally threw it away (that trauma can wait for another post though), I'm not sure I have ever forgiven her for that.

Everything I love about Linus can be summed up in his relationship with The Great Pumpkin.  Linus never losses faith in his beliefs, even when he is being ridiculed by others.  He truly believes that The Great Pumpkin will reward him if he has the most sincere pumpkin patch and yet when things don't turn out his way, he never totally loses that faith.  Linus shows courage and a strong sense of self throughout the ordeal and I've always admired that about it.  He knows who he is at such a young age and he doesn't let doubt or ridicule change that.

So far all of those who have never seen the movie or haven't watched it in a long time, please take the time this year and treat yourself to a wonderful story and an even better hero.


Michelle Stockard Miller said...

I have been a loyal Peanuts fan for most of my life. I've been watching the holiday specials and reading the books for as long as I can remember. I have the entire set of the earlier comic strips in a full set of anthologies that I've owned since I was a child. I used to read these books every summer, up until my teenage years! Snoopy was my favorite character. I always thought he was so funny. I loved how he would irritate Charlie Brown. I also liked Linus and Schroeder (the piano player). I think I liked him because he wouldn't give Lucy the time of day. I despised Lucy (probably still do)! I watch the Great Pumpkin every year with my boys. It's a must be done!

Anonymous said...

I love Linus. We'll be watching It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown probably Saturday. It's a Halloween must at our house, too.

Your mother threw away your blanket? My daughter's 10 and still sleeps with hers every night.

Staci said...

I loved this post so much. This is one of my favorite Snoopy shows ever and how you could not love Linus and how faithful he was??? Loved your blankie story too!!

Lisa_Gibson said...

Great post! I love Linus too! He's such a sweet guy and so optimistic. :)
Lisa ~ YA Literature Lover

Yvette said...

Long live Linus!

Melissa (My words and pages) said...

You know we didn't get to see any of these Halloween shows this year. That's a shame as we really enjoy watching them. Oh well, thats what happens when you are always running around with the kid. Great pick this week. :)