| Special to The Ledger
In 1965, an American tradition started. The year “The Sound of Music” made its debut. When President Lyndon Johnson made his “Great Society” speech to Congress. The same year of the Selma, Alabama, civil-rights march.
That year, Peanuts and the gang had its first run on CBS in “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.”
The Great Pumpkin remained in the CBS patch until 2000, when the ABC network acquired the rights. In 2018, another change came about: Apple TV+ bought the airing rights to the Halloween special and other holiday related Peanuts’ favorites – including “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” and “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”
There is a good and bad side to this. No longer will these classics be available free to nearly everyone who has a television and antenna or a cable connection. No longer will everyone be turned in on the same night at the same time each year, watching collectively as a nation.
But at least the programs are still available – and even if you aren’t an Apple TV+ subscriber, there’s a way to still watch for free this weekend.
If you’re not a subscriber, you can sign up for seven days of Apple TV+ for free. The stream for “Pumpkin” is available from Oct. 30 through Sunday. In addition, if you don’t have an Apple TV device, you’ll need an add-on piece of equipment like a Ruko or Amazon Fire Stick.
All that comes with this warning: If not canceled within the seven-day trial, $5 a month will be charged to the credit card.
After a half-century of free availability, viewers have not been kind in their social-media posts.
Wrote one: “Really? Now i gotta pay for yet ANOTHER Streaming Service just so i can watch the peanuts specials. What about the people who cant afford this? yet another thing ruined by greedy streaming services.”
Hmmm. Turns out Christmas wasn’t the only thing the Grinch stole.
Lonnie Brown can be reached at [email protected]