Dec. 04, 1969
86 min.
CBS TV Network

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A Boy Named Charlie Brown tv show photo

A Boy Named Charlie Brown

Poor Charlie Brown. He can't fly a kite, and he always loses in baseball. Having his faults projected onto a screen by Lucy doesn't help him much either. Against the sage advice and taunting of the girls in his class, he volunteers for the class spelling bee...and wins! Now the pressure is on as he is off to New York City for the televised national spelling bee.

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Lucy Van Pelt A Boy Named Charlie Brown
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Lucy Van Pelt

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  Played by:
Tracy StratfordTracy Stratford
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Character Bio

Lucy Van Pelt photo
Lucy van Pelt is a regular character in the Peanuts cartoon and TV specials. She is the older sister of Linus and Rerun.

Lucy was introduced into the strip on March 3, 1952 as a wide-eyed baby who constantly tormented her parents. Very early on, Schulz eliminated the circles around her eyes and allowed her to mature to the age of the other characters. She soon grew into her familiar persona of a bossy, crabby, selfish girl.

Lucy wears a blue-colored dress with white and black saddle shoes for most of the strip's original run. However, in later years, towards its end, she was seen more in a pink dress, until her dress was phased out altogether.

Perhaps Lucy's most famous gimmick in her long existence as a character is the one in which she pulls the football away from Charlie Brown right as he is about to kick it. The first occasion on which she did this was November 16, 1952, taking over for Violet, who had previously subjected Charlie Brown to this trick on November 14, 1955, for fear that Charlie Brown would accidentally kick her instead of the ball. Afterward, Lucy would always intentionally pull the football away from Charles Brown to trick him. The most infamous example of this is the animated special It's Your First Kiss, Charlie Brown, where her actions cost the football team the Homecoming game, yet Charlie Brown is blamed even though he is clearly not at fault. It became so bad, that later showings edited that part out.

For all her crabbiness and bad temper, Lucy did have a romantic side: she was in love with Schroeder, but he did not return the affection. In this Lucy is seen as insecure, as she shows a need for assurance from Schroeder and Charlie Brown that she is pretty (constantly asking them of their opinion of her appearance), and is known to react harshly when she receives an unfavorable, or even hesitant, answer. Indeed, Lucy seems to be rather thin-skinned when it comes to being insulted herself; once, when Linus countered her statement that he was a terrible brother by saying that she was not such a great sister either, Lucy burst into tears. Another time, her reaction to Charlie Brown's telling her she was not perfect was to storm off angrily without even a word, leaving Charlie Brown to comment, "I've never seen anyone so insulted!"

See main article: Lucy and Linus's relationship

Lucy is often annoyed by her younger brother Linus, and often bosses him around or calls him a blockhead. She hated many of his habits, and always tried to get him to stop..

Charlie Brown
Her treatment of Charlie Brown is just as bad. Aside from her infamous football trick, she gives "psychiatric advice" by insulting and belittling him. When Charlie Brown fails at something, Lucy is quick to point it out, as illustrated by the series of strips in early 1964 (later adapted into the script of A Boy Named Charlie Brown) in which she put together a slide presentation of all of Charlie Brown's faults, and subsequently demanded that he pay her a sum of $143 for her services.

See main article: Lucy and Schroeder's relationship

Lucy suffers from unrequited love for Schroder. Lucy's love for Schroeder has made her do crazy things. She even mentioned that the only reason she joined Charlie Brown's baseball team is because she loves Schroeder, who's the catcher. Schroeder usually does not appreciate her love for him, but occasionly he does.

By contrast, Lucy's relationship with her youngest brother, Rerun (who entered the strip as a baby in the early 1970s but didn't become a major character until the late 1990s), is much less turbulent. Despite her initial dismay over his birth (lamenting that she was experiencing a "rerun" with another baby brother, thus giving him his nickname), Lucy in fact took on something of a mentor role for Rerun, teaching him important things he needs to survive in life, such as how to tie his shoes. Rerun often shows a knack for getting around Lucy and weakening her defenses, whereas Linus is apt to give up and just let Lucy dominate him. In one strip, Lucy walked up to Rerun building a sand castle in a sandbox, and asked him what he would do if she kicked it down. Rerun responded; "Oh, nothing I guess. But years from now, when You and Your Husband come over to My house, and ask Me to co-sign for a loan for You, I might remember it". Lucy appeared to think this over for a moment, and then walked away grinding her teeth in frustration, while Rerun smugly continued building his sand castle.

Lucy is terrified of being licked or kissed by Snoopy, and usually runs off screaming whenever he does kiss her. Snoopy is naturally infatuated with her and likes to tease her about it. On several occasions, her flirting with Schroeder has inadvertently resulted in a kiss from Snoopy - Schroeder walks away as soon as Lucy begins flirting, but then Snoopy appears, hears Lucy talking about a kiss, and kisses her, which inevitably results in Lucy running off in hysterics. Schroeder also once had Snoopy kiss Lucy to get out of kissing her himself, by having Snoopy act as his "representative" to deliver a kiss on Beethoven's birthday.

Lucy and Snoopy have also occasionally found themselves in not-so-friendly competition - the two faced off in an arm-wrestling tournament once (the competition ended abruptly after Snoopy kissed Lucy on the nose and she recoiled in horror), and more than once in the course of the strip have actually come to fighting (again, Snoopy often wins by default by trying to kiss or lick Lucy's face). On several occasions, Charlie Brown has had Snoopy stay at Lucy's house while he and his family went on vacation, and Lucy usually treats her canine house guest inhospitably (i.e. forcing him to sleep outside in one of her old doll beds). Still, as it turns out, Snoopy is perhaps one of the few characters in the strip who usually winds up outsmarting Lucy.

However, one of the most famous Peanuts strips of all time shows a rare moment of Lucy showing affection towards Snoopy by hugging him and then saying one of the most famous quotes in the strip's history, "Happiness is a warm puppy." Lucy herself acknowledged in another strip that although there were times when Snoopy drove her crazy, there were also times when she felt like hugging him, which she then proceeded to do.

In the bed scene in Race for Your Life, Charlie Brown, Lucy admits that when she usually goes to bed, her mother kisses her goodnight first, Marcie, agreeing says that its hard to go to sleep without a kiss goodnight from someone, Seconds later, Snoopy comes bursting through the door and kisses all the girls except Peppermint Patty, when he kissed Lucy, she does not resist by doing anything and did not react when he did kiss her. This is one exception, but normally, Lucy will never let Snoopy kiss her.

Episode Screenshots

01x01 - A Boy Named Charlie Brown
Season 1, Episode 01
[More Episodes]

Lucy Van Pelt Photos

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