The vacations are wanting rather less Linus this yr for Peanuts followers hoping to catch Charlie Brown specials on community tv, as has been custom for many years.
As a substitute, Peanuts can be completely accessible on Apple’s streaming service—which has prompted a petition demanding the specials return to broadcast TV. It’s not the primary time a streaming service has snapped up a beloved franchise to spice up its subscriber numbers, however it does elevate new questions concerning the implications of exclusivity rights to cultural touchstones.
Apple final week introduced an expanded partnership with WildBrain, Peanuts Worldwide, and Lee Mendelson Movie Productions that may deliver extra Peanuts—together with “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving,” and “It’s the Nice Pumpkin, Charlie Brown”—to Apple TV+, which Apple has been trying to bulk up with a mix of its originals and a quantity of acquisitions.
In response to the information, a Change.org petition requesting the Peanuts collection return to broadcast tv is choosing up momentum. The petition, which says its objective is to “get our Peanuts again on tv and convey again the custom,” has amassed practically 200,000 signatures as of this writing.
An Apple TV+ subscription presently prices $5 monthly except unlocked with a promotional supply. Apple stated that it might make the aforementioned three specials accessible without spending a dime for three-day home windows close to their respective holidays, however customers would nonetheless want entry to the Apple TV app to observe them. Apple didn’t instantly return a request for remark concerning the particular phrases of exclusivity for the Charlie Brown specials, nonetheless, a supply cited by Vulture stated that the Peanuts specials wouldn’t air on ABC as they’ve for the final 20 years.
The change calls to thoughts HBO’s personal acquisition of a cherished household franchise with Sesame Avenue, which now premieres first on the current iteration of the service with HBO Max. Although episodes of the present nonetheless air on PBS, a person streaming service holds the keys to accessing newer episodes. And entry to HBO Max, very like Apple TV+, will largely rely on the expertise you’ve entry to and your willingness to pay for or in any other case subscribe to a particular streaming service.
As streaming companies compete ever extra aggressively for our cash and our eyeballs, we’re prone to see a better variety of goliaths hoarding legacy franchises. However most individuals can’t and received’t subscribe to all the things, and which means exclusivity comes on the detriment of entry to beloved characters and storytelling. That’s a disgrace.