No Great Pumpkin this year?

JackieT

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Agreed. Too many folks won't let go of the past and try to find everything they can wrong with things like new tech.
 

Josh Steinberg

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Most people don’t. For those having difficulty with the new lay of the land, I just want to be as helpful as I can for when they’re ready to take the leap.
 
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Chip_HT

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Without those 3 Peanut specials, ABC is going to take a big dip in ratings; those 3 specials have always brought in big numbers with each airing and usually winning that nights primetime viewings across multiple stations and networks.
This page has the ratings for last year's Great Pumpkin airing: http://www.showbuzzdaily.com/articles/the-sked-tuesday-network-scorecard-10-22-2019.html and http://www.showbuzzdaily.com/articles/the-sked-sunday-network-scorecard-10-27-2019.html for the one hour Sunday airing.

The Christmas ratings are here: http://www.showbuzzdaily.com/articles/the-sked-thursday-network-scorecard-12-5-2019.html and http://www.showbuzzdaily.com/articles/the-sked-tuesday-network-scorecard-12-17-2019.html

What I'm seeing is that those specials do about the same as just about any other non-sports programming.
 

Jake Lipson

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Too many folks won't let go of the past and try to find everything they can wrong with things like new tech.
That's not what this is about. You stream. I stream. Most of us here on this board stream. It's not about us.

As I expressed before, there are a lot of people who do not have access to the technology required to access Apple TV+. Even though Josh is right that a lot of people use DVRs, there is still a level of access that happens when something is available on a linear broadcast network which can't be matched by a streaming service. It is for this reason that the removal of the Peanuts specials from network TV is bothering people.

Why does it seem like that is so difficult for you to understand?
 

Matt Hough

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I long ago got used to viewing traditions from my childhood ebbing away: The Wizard of Oz, Peter Pan, Cinderella. These were all things I eagerly awaited each year. Oz stayed around the longest, but it eventually gave up the ghost, too as it migrated to basic cable. Of course, by then I had them all on home media: VHS, then DVD and upwards, and I have never had to rely to broadcast networks for them any longer. The Charlie Brown specials join the list now.
 

Garysb

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I don't think ABC has anything to do with any of it. I'm sure they'd love to still be showing the specials.

This is with the rights-holder of the specials trying to make money and apparently Apple was willing to pay the most.
I don't get the anger at Apple. It was the rights holder who made the deal. We don't know if ABC was interested in renewing the deal or not. We don't know if any of the other broadcast networks were interested. There was no news of a bidding war for the Peanuts specials, ABC, being a part of Disney, has access to many holiday programs which they control. Maybe the felt they didn't need Peanuts or the asking price to renew was too high. Clearly there was some thought that this would upset people so they are allowing the specials to be viewed for a short period without subscribing to Apple+. Is this perfect? No there are still many who will not be able to watch these specials. Its too bad they didn't announce last year that the shows were leaving ABC. I assume they didn't know as it probably would have increased ratings.

It's interesting that this happened without any fanfare. I remember when Turner obtained the exclusive rights to "Gone with The Wind" when it was still contracted to air on network television for a few more years in exchange for extending the broadcast network's rights to "The Wizard of Oz". This was a news story all over the country at the time.
 
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John*Wells

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Because it's still a source for news, sports, weather, and entertainment for millions of people every day.

And even all of those things are slowly going away on any kind of over the air TV. The news Networks all have Streaming platforms. Theres ESPN+ for Sports, There are any number of weather mobile apps and we are at a point where Scripted TV is and has been disappearing From Cable and OTA. Off the top of My head I Can think of maybe 2 Scripted shows on OTA TV (NCIS and The Neighborhood) (ABC NBC CBS FOX and PBS all have streaming apps .. I hate to show my age but I used to come home after school and turn on He Man and the Masters of the Universe on the local ABC affiliate in my town. Now its all talk all the time
 

David Deeb

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I haven't watched the Halloween show in decades, but the topic intrigued me.

Reading through the back and forth of debate in this thread took me longer than probably just watching the show.
 
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MatthewA

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Because it's still a source for news, sports, weather, and entertainment for millions of people every day.
And it's a number that has been getting smaller and smaller since the 1980s and is never going to get bigger again. Under those circumstances, it's a wonder Mendelson didn't take his business somewhere else sooner since he had no trouble licensing the rights to non-holiday specials to multiple cable channels and home video companies.
 

Ejanss

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It's just where the media has moved on to. The days of little plastic discs to watch media on and poo pooing streaming are almost behind us and I feel bad for those that won't embrace the next step in home entertainment.
Yes, but the reality is, streaming having become a "replacement" technology and our neato-honeymoon with it over and now becoming a common fact of life, we're moving from Luddite poo-poo'ing of streaming, to the experienced voice of burned-customer paranoia and mistrust that streaming (and the "greedy" studios/companies behind them) is going to double-cross us in the end. For every Disney+ Mandalorian fanboy, there are three or four complaining about the lack of content diversity and ignoring of vintage catalog, and planning to drop the service to experiment with others.
Those younger single apartment-dwellers who feel like they have a personal "relationship" with their favorite service are going to feel a lot more resentment over some particular indiscretion, and the bad-breakups aren't going to be pretty. Some might still forgive Disney+ after Mulan, or think HBO and Gone With the Wind was "overreacting", but NOBODY messes with the Peanuts holiday specials. Least of all the "uppity" AppleTV that nobody watches.

Now, the trick is just convincing them that plastic disc didn't "go away" just because Netflix started creating pretentious series, and that it's better to stockpile for emergencies. Like, um, this one, for example.

I would say it's a run on the product similar to the Gone With the Wind incident except for the fact that it isn't that big a story, and I think stock may have been depleted for some time now and no one noticed. So my guess is that yes the Peanuts specials are going out-of-print on disc for the foreseeable future.
Have the Peanuts specials been IN print for the last few years?
With Warner, we're lucky that the Peanuts holiday trilogy is still one of the few franchises they think they can sell retail (too bad if you're waiting for them to bring back the Decade Collections)--But I don't recall the Holiday boxset for sale last year, with or without any retail ornaments/tsotchkes that Warner sticks on because they think they can't sell it without one.
 
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Clinton McClure

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It's not about those of us here who stream and/or own the discs lacking access. You are, of course, entitled to your opinion. But I don't think @Osato's reaction is extreme at all. You just don't seem to understand why the rest of us think this is an issue.

The point, as I tried to explain to you yesterday, is that having these on broadcast television provides wider potential access than any streaming service. I'm guessing from the content of your posts that you probably do a lot of streaming, which is great if it is something that you like and value. But just because it's up there for free for a short window of time does not mean that it will reach the same level of audience on the streaming service that it would have had it continued to air on network television. There are people who simply don't stream, or who can't afford the equipment and/or high speed internet access required to do so. Those folks are going to lose out for the foreseeable future without making a disc purchase or rental, and that is unfortunate.

Christmas debuted in 1965, Great Pumpkin in 1966 and Thanksgiving in 1973. They have aired on network television consistently every year since, first on CBS through 1999 and then on ABC starting in 2000. This will be the first year since I've been alive that the shows are not on broadcast television. I have the discs now, so I can and will watch them at my leisure, but that is still very strange and sad. I'm having trouble wrapping my head around it. It's a big deal for them to be gone from broadcast.

I don't see any problem with Apple controlling the subscription streaming rights. But I do think it is unfortunate that they took it exclusively. I understand why they would want that, but it's too bad that the licensors chose not to grant a broadcast window as to a network as well. There is a big difference between Apple paying to produce new Peanuts content which is behind their paywall (which they do) and hoarding the existing classic specials. I'd love to know what price Apple shelled out in order to get that exclusivity.

If streaming had existed when these specials were originally made in the way that it does now, and they had never aired on broadcast television at all, they would not have had anywhere near as much cultural impact and resonance as they have enjoyed over the years as network television staples. This is a great deal for whoever accepted Apple's bid for exclusivity because they undoubtably got a whole bundle of money. But I think that it is a particularly shortsighted long-term decision for the future audience size and commercial value of the specials. If they are not on broadcast television for several years, and then the owners wish to take them out to networks again when Apple's exclusivity runs out, they might not be able to command as much. Their disappearance from network TV will have meant that the holiday season traditions of watching these specials will have bene broken as a result of their absence, and once you break a ritual it could be very difficult to bring people back to it later. So, overall I think this isa very bad move for the long-term health of the brand and the specials.
To add to this a little bit. I love the Great Pumpkin and watch it every year. As a matter of fact, I streamed it last night and enjoyed the hell out of it. The “city” I moved from this year only got broadband internet 10 years ago and there’s no competition so it’s very slow, way overpriced, and mostly offline so streaming anything there is a 50/50 gamble that usually doesn’t pay off. If I lived there today, there’s a good chance that I wouldn’t be able to watch the Great Pumpkin since it’s not available on broadcast or satellite. I really love Apple as a company but I think this was a misguided step that is going to cause them a lot of heat.
 
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Jake Lipson

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I really love Apple as a company but I think this was a misguided step that is going to cause them a lot of heat.
I really don't get the hate towards Apple on this one.

All we know is that Apple made a bid for the specials. This is just good business, especially since they already have new original Peanuts content on their service. The company that controls the licenses for Peanuts accepted that bid and also granted them the license exclusively.

It seems to me that the "bad guys" here (for lack of a better term) are not Apple, but the licensors. They could have chosen to go with a broadcast partner. They decided not to do that. That's not on Apple. That's on them.

I do not see anything wrong with Apple controlling subscription streaming rights to the specials. But there is a difference between them having the exclusive rights to new specials which they will produce (which they also do) and the original specials being taken away from broadcast.

What I would have done if I owned the rights is give Apple the exclusive streaming rights, and then carve out another window for a network (ABC/CBS/whatever) to carry the specials as a linear television broadcast only.

All we know is that the deal didn't turn out that way. We don't know why or what the circumstances of the negotiations were. But ultimately, the company that controls Peanuts had the final decision as far where the specials would land. I understand the disappointment over the situation, but I don't get the hate for Apple specifically here.
 
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AlexNH

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My guess is that Apple won't allow any new discs to be printed under their new licensing agreement. Really sad.
 
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Jake Lipson

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My guess is that Apple won't allow any new discs to be printed under their new licensing agreement.
Their licensing agreement is for streaming rights. If the owners of Peanuts would allow Apple to dictate what they can sell on physical media, they're crazy, because that cuts off an additional revenue stream for them.

I would be really surprised if the discs don't turn up for sale again in the future.

They're sold outright now because people realized they won't be available on network television in the near future, so people bought up discs like I did. It seems clear that that sudden surge in demand for titles which don't normally experience such a concentrated spike obviously wiped out present stock. But I think they will come back as soon as Warner Bros. can get new discs pressed. With the virus, that might take longer than normal.
 

Mark-P

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It seems to me that the "bad guys" here (for lack of a better term) are not Apple, but the licensors. They could have chosen to go with a broadcast partner. They decided not to do that. That's not on Apple. That's on them.
I don't know Jake, if Apple offered someone ten times what a broadcast partner could afford, does that make them a "bad guy" for accepting the offer? The old saying goes, everyone has a price. What this leads to are monopolies by the giants. Buying the rights to franchises, is kind of like buying out your competition. That’s why so many people hate Disney. Personally I don’t have a problem with any of it. As long as the content is still available somewhere, I’m good.
 
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Jake Lipson

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I don't know Jake, if Apple offered someone ten times what a broadcast partner could afford, does that make them a "bad guy" for accepting the offer?
No. It was poor wording on my part. That's why I said "for lack of a better term" because I couldn't think of a more appropriate one. But it ultimately does make the licensors responsible for deciding where the specials will air. They aren't bad guys, but I think they made a bad call. So if people are going to be mad at a particular entity, be mad at the ones who accepted this deal. Apple is not at fault for making the best offer they could.

I think it is shortsighted of the licensors to take Apple's bundle of cash over recognizing the value to their brand of having the specials available on broadcast television. There is a big difference between Apple having new series and specials that they are paying for exclusively and having exclusivity on the classic specials. But that's their choice.

I don't know Peanuts because of the comic strip. I mean, I know that the strip exists, and occasionally I would look at the comics page back when my family used to get the newspaper, which we don't anymore. I always enjoy the strip on the occasion I see one. I Facebook like pages that periodically post a random strip. But it isn't like I ever read the strip all the time. My entry point where I became fond of the characters was really from watching the specials every year (and, when I was younger and it was on, The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show) moreso than the strip itself. I don't say that disrespectfully to the strip at all, but TV just has a broader reach. If you take the specials away from broadcast television and put it exclusively on streaming, there is a high probability that a new generation of kids will not see the specials as the holiday staple that they have been for multiple generations now.

A friend of mine from college had a baby this year. She doesn't stream much. I don't think she owns them, but I'm sure she's seen them on TV over the years. Will her kid be exposed to the specials the same way I was? I don't know. If she isn't, will she become a fan of the characters the way that I did? I don't know. If she does't, that will ultimately hurt the value of the brand in the future when new generations are less acquainted with and fond of the characters.

If they consider the money that they got from Apple to be worth that risk, that's their choice to make. But I think it will hurt the longevity of the brand in the end.
 

Johnny Angell

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When he was alive, Schulz merchandised peanuts more than any other comic strip. He was happy to commercialize Peanuts. Perhaps his estate is just continuing that. From time-to-time I would end up thinking “Now Peanuts is selling that?”
 

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