It'll be an annoyance to people who have to buy certain specials twice, but I'm still glad that the first six Charlie Brown specials will be released on DVD in a two-disc collection on July 7.
The non-seasonal specials aren't seen very often because they don't have a holiday peg, but the second special, "Charlie Brown's All-Stars," is actually my favorite of the specials. Bill Melendez and his animators had learned a few things from "Charlie Brown Christmas," so it's a bit more polished in animation and writing, but it's still early enough that it retains the awkward, rough charm of the first special. And the baseball theme allows them to use many of the best jokes from the strip without losing the story thread. (Almost any baseball-themed strip fits in with the theme of the special, whereas in other specials and movies, the repurposed strips can seem shoehorned in or awkwardly re-assigned.) And the baseball theme has one more advantage: on the baseball field, Snoopy can be a purely physical character and his lack of a voice, or any way of expressing his thoughts, isn't really a problem. In other specials, especially some of the later ones where they gave Snoopy a bigger part, he's severely weakened as a character by the decision to keep him silent. (I understand why they did it, and I think it worked for the first two specials, but by "Great Pumpkin," his World War I Flying Ace routine is just not as much fun without Snoopy narrating it himself.)
It might be nostalgia talking, because my introduction to Charlie Brown in other media was an audio record based on Charlie Brown's All Stars, but I really do think it's the best of the Melendez/Mendelson specials.