History Main / WhatANightmareCharlieBrown

2nd Jul '14 5:57:11 AM SeptimusHeap
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'''''What a Nightmare, Charlie Brown''''' is the 17th of the prime time animated TV specials based upon the popular comic strip ''{{Peanuts}}'', created by Charles M. Schulz. It was originally aired on Thursday, February 23, 1978, at 8:00 P.M. ET/PT on Creator/{{CBS}}. It is a special to feature solely Snoopy and Charlie Brown and none of the other Peanuts cast appear. The plot is extremely similar to that of Jack London's ''Literature/TheCallOfTheWild''.

The special was on DVD as part of the ''Peanuts 1970's Collection, Volume Two'' set.

!!! Plot

In the winter, Charlie Brown is trying to pretend to be a musher with Snoopy, but Snoopy has other ideas and gets Charlie Brown to pull while he has fun riding in the sled. When night comes and they are comfortably indoors, Charlie Brown is indignant that Snoopy is adjusting too well to home life, reminding Snoopy of facts that Arctic dogs are only fed once a day, their meals largely consisting of cold meat and raw fish (to which Snoopy blanches and gives a look of "it is too bad to be them") and coming to the conclusion that Snoopy is "an overly civilized, underly 'dogified' dog". After making a large dinner of five pizzas and a large milkshake - all of which he eats himself, Snoopy goes to bed on his doghouse and promptly wakes up to find out that he is now a sled dog of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Alaska, presumably during the Klondike Gold Rush or the 1925 serum run to Nome.

At first Snoopy is cruelly mistreated by his owner (whom is only seen in silhouette and only speaks in a much deeper version of the classic Peanuts adult "waa-waa-waa" language) and his fellow dogs, being run ragged and then denied any food or water. The dogs also take turns barking loudly at Snoopy in order to let him know he is indeed an outsider. One scene which breaks the snow scenes is where the sledmaster stops at a honky tonk, and a hungry Snoopy sneaks inside to snatch a sandwich and a mug of root beer sitting near a piano where he starts playing The Washington Post March. Snoopy then tries his hand at a game of poker, where he keeps a poker face until he laughs out loud revealing his improbable winning hand of five aces, which causes a brawl and leaving Snoopy to escape into the next room. He then finds himself on stage with a painted backdrop of Paris, France and is cheered for his dancing, except when the music changes and Snoopy impersonates a can can dancer, to which the men riot. Snoopy is thrown out of the bar and is back with the sled dogs, where he continues to be mistreated, and denied food and water.

Unable to take anymore, Snoopy breaks down crying and converts to his "new life" in order to survive, he bares his fangs and falls to walking on all fours, and challenges the lead dog to a fight, which Snoopy wins. Ultimately Snoopy becomes the "Alpha Male" of the sled dog pack and also turns the tables on the rest of the dogs by denying them food and water.

Eventually, he leads his owner over an ice-covered lake when the ice cracks and causes all the sled dogs and the owner to be swallowed into the water. Snoopy finds himself being pulled into the hole. As he sinks screaming for his life, Snoopy wakes up clinging to the side of his doghouse and is relieved that he was just having a nightmare.

Snoopy then wakes Charlie Brown and recounts his nightmare in pantomime, to which Charlie Brown allows Snoopy to spend the night inside with him, but not before Snoopy helps himself to a large ice cream sundae, reminding himself his Arctic experience was indeed just a nightmare.

!!! Tropes

* AcidRefluxNightmare
* AllJustADream
* BreakTheCutie: Snoopy in the nightmare. About three-fourths of the way into the special, the constant exhaustion, freezing, hunger, thirst and abuse finally get to him and he breaks down and cries... and then the final straw comes when feeding time comes and the other dogs deny him food for the umpteenth time. Upon which he transforms into a vicious beast.
* CatapultNightmare: Snoopy wakes up from his dream by falling off the roof of his doghouse.
* CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass: Snoopy became this after having taken enough abuse from the other sled dogs.
* DarkerAndEdgier: Only second behind ''RaceForYourLifeCharlieBrown''.
* ADayInTheLimelight: This one's virtually all-Snoopy; Charlie Brown only appears at the very beginning and end, and none of the other regular characters appear at all.
* DisproportionateRetribution: Charlie Brown gets unreasonably snappish with Snoopy when Snoopy proves unable to pull the sled. Not a nice thing to do, but when he offers to pull the sled himself to show how it's done, Snoopy answers by ''taking out a whip'' and forcing him to run with the sled all over the neighborhood, lashing at him with the whip and laughing uncontrollably. Presumably, this is due to Snoopy's irritation with Charlie Brown's constant insistance that he act like what his owner thinks a dog should be, but its still a bit much.
** In some ways Snoopy's nightmare can be seen as a sort of ''[[LaserGuidedKarma Karmic]]'' DisproportionateRetribution, as he gets the same treatment from the sled owner, with a fair bit of extra abuse, humiliation and cruelty thrown in from the other dogs.
* FourLegsGoodTwoLegsBetter: For most of the special, Snoopy is bipedal while the sled dogs are quadrupedal. Once Snoopy starts getting assertive, he pretty much regresses to a quadruped.
* HatesBeingTouched: When Snoopy tried sleeping next to the lead dog, the lead dog just barks at him, apparently because he does not like being cuddled up with.
* HeWhoMustNotBeSeen: The sled owner is only ever seen in silhouette or as a shadow looming over Snoopy, and is really portrayed more as a force that keeps whipping the dogs to get them to run and pull the sled than he is an actual character. [[NothingIsScarier This of course just makes him seem a lot more menacing.]]
* HumiliationConga: Happened to Snoopy in the casino scene; First getting caught up in the music roll of the piano, then causing a riot after showing his improbable hand of five aces, then finally impersonating a can-can dancer on stage which causes the audience to boo him and throw fruits and vegetables at him.
* JerkAss: All of the sled dogs have their moments, but the lead dog is the meanest of them all, barking at Snoopy whenever he tries to get some food or a drink of water. The owner isnt much better, he seems to have no interest whatsoever in keeping the pack from abusing the runt.
* KidsAreCruel: A mild case compared to the cruelties kids get up to in other ''{{Peanuts}}'' stories, but we do get a rare display of this trope from Charlie Brown. Beagles aren't ideal sled dogs, and the sled is clearly too heavy for Snoopy to pull, but Charlie Brown is anything but understanding here, just beginning to berate Snoopy and telling him horror stories on how working dogs live in the Arctic, which is of course what later leads to the titular nightmare. This isnt exactly out of character, since Charlie Brown has often expected Snoopy to act more like an adventure pet, but he's usually not this much of a dick about it. Of course, Snoopy then unleashes a DisproportionateRetribution on him (see above).
* LetsGetDangerous: Snoopy, when he becomes... uh, ''[[BreakTheCutie broken]]'', for a lack of better words.
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: This was how Snoopy was able to win the fight against the lead dog for the position of the Alpha Male.
* ProducePelting: Happened while Snoopy was imitating a can-can dancer.
* TookALevelInBadass: Snoopy giving the lead dog what for.
* TookALevelInJerkass: Snoopy becomes as to the other sled dogs as they were to him. Also Charlie Brown in a rare example (see KidsAreCruel above).
* TriumphantReprise: Of the "Overly Civilized Dog" song when Snoopy starts getting assertive over the other sled dogs.
* TheUnintelligible: The musher, who only speaks in a deeper version of the Peanuts adult "waah-waah-waah" language.
* XMeetsY: ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' meets ''Literature/TheCallOfTheWild''.

to:

'''''What a Nightmare, Charlie Brown''''' is the 17th of the prime time animated TV specials based upon the popular comic strip ''{{Peanuts}}'', created by Charles M. Schulz. It was originally aired on Thursday, February 23, 1978, at 8:00 P.M. ET/PT on Creator/{{CBS}}. It is a special to feature solely Snoopy and Charlie Brown and none of the other Peanuts cast appear. The plot is extremely similar to that of Jack London's ''Literature/TheCallOfTheWild''.

The special was on DVD as part of the ''Peanuts 1970's Collection, Volume Two'' set.

!!! Plot

In the winter, Charlie Brown is trying to pretend to be a musher with Snoopy, but Snoopy has other ideas and gets Charlie Brown to pull while he has fun riding in the sled. When night comes and they are comfortably indoors, Charlie Brown is indignant that Snoopy is adjusting too well to home life, reminding Snoopy of facts that Arctic dogs are only fed once a day, their meals largely consisting of cold meat and raw fish (to which Snoopy blanches and gives a look of "it is too bad to be them") and coming to the conclusion that Snoopy is "an overly civilized, underly 'dogified' dog". After making a large dinner of five pizzas and a large milkshake - all of which he eats himself, Snoopy goes to bed on his doghouse and promptly wakes up to find out that he is now a sled dog of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Alaska, presumably during the Klondike Gold Rush or the 1925 serum run to Nome.

At first Snoopy is cruelly mistreated by his owner (whom is only seen in silhouette and only speaks in a much deeper version of the classic Peanuts adult "waa-waa-waa" language) and his fellow dogs, being run ragged and then denied any food or water. The dogs also take turns barking loudly at Snoopy in order to let him know he is indeed an outsider. One scene which breaks the snow scenes is where the sledmaster stops at a honky tonk, and a hungry Snoopy sneaks inside to snatch a sandwich and a mug of root beer sitting near a piano where he starts playing The Washington Post March. Snoopy then tries his hand at a game of poker, where he keeps a poker face until he laughs out loud revealing his improbable winning hand of five aces, which causes a brawl and leaving Snoopy to escape into the next room. He then finds himself on stage with a painted backdrop of Paris, France and is cheered for his dancing, except when the music changes and Snoopy impersonates a can can dancer, to which the men riot. Snoopy is thrown out of the bar and is back with the sled dogs, where he continues to be mistreated, and denied food and water.

Unable to take anymore, Snoopy breaks down crying and converts to his "new life" in order to survive, he bares his fangs and falls to walking on all fours, and challenges the lead dog to a fight, which Snoopy wins. Ultimately Snoopy becomes the "Alpha Male" of the sled dog pack and also turns the tables on the rest of the dogs by denying them food and water.

Eventually, he leads his owner over an ice-covered lake when the ice cracks and causes all the sled dogs and the owner to be swallowed into the water. Snoopy finds himself being pulled into the hole. As he sinks screaming for his life, Snoopy wakes up clinging to the side of his doghouse and is relieved that he was just having a nightmare.

Snoopy then wakes Charlie Brown and recounts his nightmare in pantomime, to which Charlie Brown allows Snoopy to spend the night inside with him, but not before Snoopy helps himself to a large ice cream sundae, reminding himself his Arctic experience was indeed just a nightmare.

!!! Tropes

* AcidRefluxNightmare
* AllJustADream
* BreakTheCutie: Snoopy in the nightmare. About three-fourths of the way into the special, the constant exhaustion, freezing, hunger, thirst and abuse finally get to him and he breaks down and cries... and then the final straw comes when feeding time comes and the other dogs deny him food for the umpteenth time. Upon which he transforms into a vicious beast.
* CatapultNightmare: Snoopy wakes up from his dream by falling off the roof of his doghouse.
* CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass: Snoopy became this after having taken enough abuse from the other sled dogs.
* DarkerAndEdgier: Only second behind ''RaceForYourLifeCharlieBrown''.
* ADayInTheLimelight: This one's virtually all-Snoopy; Charlie Brown only appears at the very beginning and end, and none of the other regular characters appear at all.
* DisproportionateRetribution: Charlie Brown gets unreasonably snappish with Snoopy when Snoopy proves unable to pull the sled. Not a nice thing to do, but when he offers to pull the sled himself to show how it's done, Snoopy answers by ''taking out a whip'' and forcing him to run with the sled all over the neighborhood, lashing at him with the whip and laughing uncontrollably. Presumably, this is due to Snoopy's irritation with Charlie Brown's constant insistance that he act like what his owner thinks a dog should be, but its still a bit much.
** In some ways Snoopy's nightmare can be seen as a sort of ''[[LaserGuidedKarma Karmic]]'' DisproportionateRetribution, as he gets the same treatment from the sled owner, with a fair bit of extra abuse, humiliation and cruelty thrown in from the other dogs.
* FourLegsGoodTwoLegsBetter: For most of the special, Snoopy is bipedal while the sled dogs are quadrupedal. Once Snoopy starts getting assertive, he pretty much regresses to a quadruped.
* HatesBeingTouched: When Snoopy tried sleeping next to the lead dog, the lead dog just barks at him, apparently because he does not like being cuddled up with.
* HeWhoMustNotBeSeen: The sled owner is only ever seen in silhouette or as a shadow looming over Snoopy, and is really portrayed more as a force that keeps whipping the dogs to get them to run and pull the sled than he is an actual character. [[NothingIsScarier This of course just makes him seem a lot more menacing.]]
* HumiliationConga: Happened to Snoopy in the casino scene; First getting caught up in the music roll of the piano, then causing a riot after showing his improbable hand of five aces, then finally impersonating a can-can dancer on stage which causes the audience to boo him and throw fruits and vegetables at him.
* JerkAss: All of the sled dogs have their moments, but the lead dog is the meanest of them all, barking at Snoopy whenever he tries to get some food or a drink of water. The owner isnt much better, he seems to have no interest whatsoever in keeping the pack from abusing the runt.
* KidsAreCruel: A mild case compared to the cruelties kids get up to in other ''{{Peanuts}}'' stories, but we do get a rare display of this trope from Charlie Brown. Beagles aren't ideal sled dogs, and the sled is clearly too heavy for Snoopy to pull, but Charlie Brown is anything but understanding here, just beginning to berate Snoopy and telling him horror stories on how working dogs live in the Arctic, which is of course what later leads to the titular nightmare. This isnt exactly out of character, since Charlie Brown has often expected Snoopy to act more like an adventure pet, but he's usually not this much of a dick about it. Of course, Snoopy then unleashes a DisproportionateRetribution on him (see above).
* LetsGetDangerous: Snoopy, when he becomes... uh, ''[[BreakTheCutie broken]]'', for a lack of better words.
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: This was how Snoopy was able to win the fight against the lead dog for the position of the Alpha Male.
* ProducePelting: Happened while Snoopy was imitating a can-can dancer.
* TookALevelInBadass: Snoopy giving the lead dog what for.
* TookALevelInJerkass: Snoopy becomes as to the other sled dogs as they were to him. Also Charlie Brown in a rare example (see KidsAreCruel above).
* TriumphantReprise: Of the "Overly Civilized Dog" song when Snoopy starts getting assertive over the other sled dogs.
* TheUnintelligible: The musher, who only speaks in a deeper version of the Peanuts adult "waah-waah-waah" language.
* XMeetsY: ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' meets ''Literature/TheCallOfTheWild''.
[[redirect:WesternAnimation/WhatANightmareCharlieBrown]]
7th Jan '14 1:03:19 PM SilentStranger
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* DisproportionateRetribution: Charlie Brown gets unreasonably snappish with Snoopy when Snoopy proves unable to pull the sled. Not a nice thing to do, but when he offers to pull the sled himself to show how it's done, Snoopy answers by ''taking out a whip'' and forcing him to run with the sled all over the neighborhood, lashing at him with the whip and laughing uncontrollably.

to:

* DisproportionateRetribution: Charlie Brown gets unreasonably snappish with Snoopy when Snoopy proves unable to pull the sled. Not a nice thing to do, but when he offers to pull the sled himself to show how it's done, Snoopy answers by ''taking out a whip'' and forcing him to run with the sled all over the neighborhood, lashing at him with the whip and laughing uncontrollably. Presumably, this is due to Snoopy's irritation with Charlie Brown's constant insistance that he act like what his owner thinks a dog should be, but its still a bit much.



* JerkAss: All of the sled dogs have their moments, but the lead dog is the meanest of them all, barking at Snoopy whenever he tries to get some food or a drink of water.
* KidsAreCruel: A mild case compared to the cruelties kids get up to in other ''{{Peanuts}}'' stories, but we do get a rare display of this trope from Charlie Brown. Beagles aren't ideal sled dogs, and the sled is clearly too heavy for Snoopy to pull, but Charlie Brown is anything but understanding here, just beginning to berate Snoopy and telling him horror stories on how dogs live in the Arctic, which is of course what later leads to the titular nightmare. Of course, Snoopy then unleashes a DisproportionateRetribution on him (see above).

to:

* JerkAss: All of the sled dogs have their moments, but the lead dog is the meanest of them all, barking at Snoopy whenever he tries to get some food or a drink of water.
water. The owner isnt much better, he seems to have no interest whatsoever in keeping the pack from abusing the runt.
* KidsAreCruel: A mild case compared to the cruelties kids get up to in other ''{{Peanuts}}'' stories, but we do get a rare display of this trope from Charlie Brown. Beagles aren't ideal sled dogs, and the sled is clearly too heavy for Snoopy to pull, but Charlie Brown is anything but understanding here, just beginning to berate Snoopy and telling him horror stories on how working dogs live in the Arctic, which is of course what later leads to the titular nightmare.nightmare. This isnt exactly out of character, since Charlie Brown has often expected Snoopy to act more like an adventure pet, but he's usually not this much of a dick about it. Of course, Snoopy then unleashes a DisproportionateRetribution on him (see above).
4th Jan '14 11:53:17 AM NESBoy
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* XMeetsY: ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' meets ''Literature/CallOfTheWild''.

to:

* XMeetsY: ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' meets ''Literature/CallOfTheWild''.''Literature/TheCallOfTheWild''.
4th Jan '14 11:51:42 AM NESBoy
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* FourLegsGoodTwoLegsBetter: For most of the special, Snoopy is bipedal while the sled dogs are quadrupedal. Once Snoopy starts getting assertive, he pretty much regresses to a quadruped.



* TheUnintelligible: The musher, who only speaks in a deeper version of the Peanuts adult "waah-waah-waah" language.

to:

* TriumphantReprise: Of the "Overly Civilized Dog" song when Snoopy starts getting assertive over the other sled dogs.
* TheUnintelligible: The musher, who only speaks in a deeper version of the Peanuts adult "waah-waah-waah" language.language.
* XMeetsY: ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' meets ''Literature/CallOfTheWild''.
17th Nov '13 10:08:38 PM Mdumas43073
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* BreakTheCutie: Snoopy in the nightmare. About three-fourth into the special, the constant exhaustion, freezing, hunger, thirst and abuse finally gets to him and he breaks down and cries... and then the final straw comes when feeding time comes and the other dogs deny him food for the umpteenth time. Upon which he transforms into a vicious beast.

to:

* BreakTheCutie: Snoopy in the nightmare. About three-fourth three-fourths of the way into the special, the constant exhaustion, freezing, hunger, thirst and abuse finally gets get to him and he breaks down and cries... and then the final straw comes when feeding time comes and the other dogs deny him food for the umpteenth time. Upon which he transforms into a vicious beast.
17th Nov '13 10:04:07 PM Mdumas43073
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* ADayInTheLimelight: This one's virtually all-Snoopy; Charlie Brown only appears at the very beginning and end, and none of the other regular characters appear.

to:

* ADayInTheLimelight: This one's virtually all-Snoopy; Charlie Brown only appears at the very beginning and end, and none of the other regular characters appear.appear at all.
17th Nov '13 10:03:54 PM Mdumas43073
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Added DiffLines:

* ADayInTheLimelight: This one's virtually all-Snoopy; Charlie Brown only appears at the very beginning and end, and none of the other regular characters appear.
16th Oct '13 11:45:02 PM MHarrington
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* LetsGetDangerous: Snoopy, when he decides he's been... uh, ''[[BreakTheCutie broken]]'', for a lack of better words.

to:

* LetsGetDangerous: Snoopy, when he decides he's been...becomes... uh, ''[[BreakTheCutie broken]]'', for a lack of better words.
16th Oct '13 11:29:19 PM MHarrington
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* LetsGetDangerous: Snoopy, when he decides he's been... uh, ''[[BreakTheCutie broken]]'', for a lack of better words.



* TookALevelInJerkass: Snoopy becomes as to the other sled dogs as they were to him.

to:

* TookALevelInJerkass: Snoopy becomes as to the other sled dogs as they were to him. Also Charlie Brown in a rare example (see KidsAreCruel above).
28th Jul '13 2:48:36 AM Roo
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* KidsAreCruel: A mild case compared to the cruelties kids get up to in other ''{{Peanuts}}'' stories, but we do get a rare display of this trope from Charlie Brown. Beagles aren't ideal sled dogs, and the sled is clearly too heavy for Snoopy to pull (despite an honest effort), but Charlie Brown is anything but understanding here, just beginning to berate Snoopy and telling him horror stories on how dogs like in the Arctic (which is of course what later leads to the titular nightmare). Of course, Snoopy then unleashes a DisproportionateRetribution on him (see above).

to:

* KidsAreCruel: A mild case compared to the cruelties kids get up to in other ''{{Peanuts}}'' stories, but we do get a rare display of this trope from Charlie Brown. Beagles aren't ideal sled dogs, and the sled is clearly too heavy for Snoopy to pull (despite an honest effort), pull, but Charlie Brown is anything but understanding here, just beginning to berate Snoopy and telling him horror stories on how dogs like live in the Arctic (which Arctic, which is of course what later leads to the titular nightmare).nightmare. Of course, Snoopy then unleashes a DisproportionateRetribution on him (see above).
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