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He's a Bully, Charlie Brown

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He'saBully-titlecard
Directed by: Larry Leichliter
Bill Melendez
Written by: Charles M. Schulz
(characters/comics)
Justine Fontes
Release date: November 20, 2006
Running time: 22 minutes
Preceded by: I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown
Followed by: Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown
Availability: You're Not Elected, Charlie Brown Deluxe Edition (bonus episode) DVD, You're Not Elected, Charlie Brown (bonus episode) iTunes

He's a Bully, Charlie Brown is the forty-fourth Peanuts TV special. It first aired on November 20, 2006 on ABC. The plot is based on several storylines that had previously appeared in the Peanuts comic strip. The Joe Agate marbles-playing storyline originally appeared in the strip beginning on April 3, 1995, the story involving Peppermint Patty sneaking away from summer school to see Charlie Brown was adapted from a storyline that began on June 6, 1989 and the story involving Joe Agate calling Marcie names was adapted from a storyline that began on July 20, 1976, although in the strip it is Floyd rather than Joe Agate who annoys Marcie.

Plot

The special begins with scenes of the gang doing various activities in a street. Charlie Brown and Lucy van Pelt are walking on a sidewalk, with Charlie Brown complementing that if he went to summer camp, he would feel homesick since he would be all alone, so Lucy opens her psychiatry booth to discuss it. Afterwards, Snoopy arrives on a skateboard and rides on a half-pipe before flying into the air and crashing into everyone.

At the van Pelt home, Rerun van Pelt finds some old marbles which his grandfather Felix, a marble master in his day, kept in the attic. Charlie Brown is going to Camp Indian Lake for summer vacation with Marcie while Peppermint Patty is stuck in summer school as a result of her poor grades. Snoopy and Charlie Brown get ready to leave for camp, the beagle bringing lots of junk with him, including a bowling ball. They ride the bus and Peppermint Patty is there saying goodbye. Charlie Brown realizes that most of his friends are going to summer camp with him.

At Camp Indian Lake, a bully named Joe Agate tauntingly talks about Snoopy and what he is going to do with the bowling ball, so he drops the bowling ball on Joe Agate's feet. Linus is seen eating a lollipop, and Rerun wants one too and goes to get one at the camp store until he sees Joe Agate play marbles. He then decides that he wants to be a marbles champ.

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Charlie Brown challenges Joe Agate

Joe Agate decides to play against Rerun on the false pretense of teaching him the game and quickly cheats him out of all of his marbles. A devastated Rerun complains to Charlie Brown. Disgusted, Charlie Brown takes responsibility and isolates himself in his cabin, where Snoopy instructs him on the game until he becomes skilled enough to win back the marbles from Joe. Meanwhile, back home, Peppermint Patty suspects that Charlie Brown is Marcie's love interest. Her temper flares when Marcie and Charlie Brown go off to camp together while she is stuck in town attending summer school as a result of her poor grades. Marcie's teasing Patty over the telephone about it makes Peppermint Patty even more jealous. Peppermint Patty, overcome with envy, hatches a plan to leave town and interrupt Marcie's supposed romance.
IMG 00000300

Charlie Brown wins back Rerun's marbles

On the last day of camp, everyone tensely watches as Joe and Charlie Brown compete. Initially Joe wins and takes all of Charlie Brown's marbles, but fortunately, Snoopy has two spares. Charlie Brown beats Joe and wins back the marbles for Rerun. Triumphant, Charlie Brown returns home, much to the surprise of Lucy, who does not believe that he has become a hero.

Voice cast

Notes

  • Originally this special was to have been called It's Only Marbles, Charlie Brown.
  • Charles M. Schulz was working on outlines for this special when he passed away, though he never completed the transcript for it.
    • This explains the reasoning behind this special having the most original material of any of the specials produced after Schulz's death.
  • It is the last special to feature Bill Melendez as the voice of Snoopy and Woodstock, as Bill Melendez died on September 2, 2008.
    • It is also the last special to be produced by Bill Melendez Productions and Lee Mendelson Productions.
  • This special first aired on ABC on November 20, 2006, following a repeat broadcast of 1973's A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. The late November airing of He's a Bully seemed a little out of place, considering its summertime setting, but ABC felt the new special would do better in the ratings if it aired right after Thanksgiving, The decision paid off, as the two shows won their time slot with 9.4 million viewers, beating out, among other things, a Madonna special on NBC.
  • When Charlie Brown gets off the camp bus after arriving back from camp, Lucy criticizes him for becoming a hero, saying that he has never won a ball game and never kicked a football, however, Charlie Brown's team has won on several occasions in the strip and Charlie Brown has kicked a football while he was invisible in It's Magic, Charlie Brown, although the events of It's Magic cannot be considered canonical to the strip.

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