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|Directed by:||Phil Roman|
|Written by:||Charles M. Schulz|
|Release date:||October 24, 1977|
|Running time:||24 minutes|
|Preceded by:||It's Arbor Day, Charlie Brown|
|Followed by:||What a Nightmare, Charlie Brown|
|Availability:||Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown iTunes, Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown (bonus episode) DVD, Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown Deluxe Edition (bonus episode) DVD, Peanuts 1970's Collection, Vol. 2 DVD, Charlie Brown Collection: Volume 1 DVD (Region 4: Australia/New Zealand)|
It is homecoming at Charlie Brown's school, and Charlie Brown and Linus are among the escorts for the Homecoming Queen and her court. During the Homecoming Parade, Linus tells Charlie Brown that he will be the escort for the Queen, but Charlie Brown is shocked when he sees the Queen, and it is, the Little Red-Haired Girl, whose name is revealed to be Heather. He is even more shocked when Linus tells him about the Homecoming tradition—that he has to escort her and give her a kiss on the cheek before the first dance. Hearing this, Charlie Brown hyperventilates and faints off the float.
The Homecoming Game begins with Snoopy as the referee and Charlie Brown on the team as kicker. Unfortunately, even in a real football game with many spectators (and Woodstock as a TV cameraman), Lucy, also on the team as the placekick setter, is unable to resist humiliating Charlie Brown, pulling the ball away just as he tries to kick it. She tells Charlie Brown, she would never pull a prank so low, and embarrass him in front of everyone but apparently, she would. Even later when he brings her a kicking tee and she tosses it aside and he reminds her of her prank, she again reminds him she would never do such a thing. To make matters worse, even though Lucy is clearly the guilty one, the team (particularly Peppermint Patty) blames Charlie Brown for the failed kicks. With just thirty seconds left in the fourth quarter, Charlie Brown has a chance to become a hero and kick a field goal for the win, but Lucy again pulls the ball away, and the team loses by only one point.
Despite the humiliation, Charlie Brown still arrives at the dance to the surprise of his teammates who think it would have been better if he did not show up at all. Remaining faithful to his duty, Charlie Brown shows up to escort Heather to the middle of the dance floor. Naturally, Charlie Brown becomes very nervous. He is extremely nervous while walking up to her, and becomes more nervous with every step he takes. Eventually he makes it up to her, and somehow finds the courage to kiss her on the cheek. From that moment forward everything is a composite blur, with Charlie Brown having euphoric visions that he is flying, and doing many impossible things.
Charlie Brown wakes up the next morning, and walks to the wall, his usual hangout. He meets up with Linus, who proceeds to tell Charlie Brown that though he might have lost the game, he definitely took the honors at the dance, when he kissed Heather, and he was the life of the party, to which Charlie Brown says "I did what?" It is then revealed that Charlie Brown has no memory as to what happened the previous night.
In disbelief, Charlie Brown says "What good is it to do anything, Linus, if you can't remember what you did?" Regardless, Linus reminds him that at least it was his first kiss and the story ends with Charlie Brown smiling with quiet satisfaction.
- Arrin Skelley - Charlie Brown
- Daniel Anderson - Linus van Pelt
- Michelle Muller - Lucy van Pelt
- Laura Planting - Peppermint Patty
- Ronald Hendrix - Franklin
- Roseline Rubens - Frieda (laughing only)
- Bill Melendez -Snoopy/Woodstock
- Although the Little Red-Haired Girl is shown and has a name (Heather) in this special, Charles M. Schulz considered the TV specials to exist in a different continuity to the comic strip, so, technically, the Little Red-Haired Girl in Peanuts remains unseen and unnamed. Schulz later came to regret having given permission for the character to appear and to be named in the special.
- Lucy pulls the football gag on Charlie Brown four times in this one special, making this special the one in which the football gag is pulled the most times.
- Suffice it to say, among Peanuts fans, no other special caused more controversy than this one did, when Charlie Brown's teammates and friends, even Linus, somehow fail to catch that it is Lucy's fault Charlie Brown misses the football. As a result, in later broadcasts and all home video releases, the worst of Peppermint Patty chewing out Charlie Brown for something that is plainly not his fault is edited out. CBS received actual letters of protest over this. However, these quotes, in Spanish, were retained on the Warner Home Video DVD release's Spanish audio. The quotes were edited out by reversing the audio tracks and reducing it in volume significantly, therefore, one can hear Peppermint Patty's original quotes if the audio is recorded and played backwards.
- The lines that were edited out are: "Boy, Chuck, you really goofed up on that play!" (at about the 7:30 mark) and "Chuck, you can't do anything right!!" (at about the 15:30 mark).
- The scene where Charlie Brown kisses the Little Red-Haired Girl on the cheek and then flies around was spliced into the "Poor Sweet Baby" scene in the TV version of Snoopy!!! The Musical.
- This special gave Peanuts fans the answer to the age-old question, "What does the Little Red-Haired Girl look like and what would happen if she actually appeared on screen?"