Netflix Is Releasing a Carmen Sandiego Series and 90’s Kids Everywhere Are Rejoicing
If you grew up during the ’80s or ’90s, then you probably knew about Carmen Sandiego. She was the trench-coated central character of a video game that came on the scene in 1985 and grew in popularity into the ‘90s.
Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? became somewhat of a cult classic, and now thanks to Netflix, the villain is back. Donning her signature red trench and matching red fedora, this Carmen is ready for action.
I remember playing the game for hours, chasing the thief and her accomplices all over the world as they stole landmarks and other objects. Remember? You had to solve riddles and jet-set to try and catch up with her, but you never saw her face. If you were a “Super Sleuth”, you were throwing everybody in jail.
Some of you may remember the live-action TV show that aired on PBS or the cartoon series, Where on Earth is Carmen Sandiego?. Back in those days, you wanted to nab Carmen, the mysterious woman who was the leader of the thieving crime syndicate, V.I.L.E. Things have changed, folks.
So, how does this animated version stack up? We’ll rely on you for that input, but let’s discuss. First off, we get to see her face. If you have seen any of the Netflix trailers (or episodes), you’ll notice it is no longer concealed by the wide-brimmed hat she is famous for wearing.
In this version, we meet a teenaged Carmen who is a thief, but is working against the V.I.L.E. organization. Voiced by Gina Rodriguez of Jane the Virgin fame, she and her trusty sidekicks try to stay two steps ahead of the bad guys. One of those sidekicks is Player, a tech whiz who is played by Stranger Things actor, Finn Wolfhard.
It is geared towards anyone age 7 and up, and adults may be drawn to it for the nostalgia. In a press release, Netflix describes this series as being an exploration into who Carmen is as a person. It is part adventure, part origin story, and Rodriguez is excited about playing the character:
“Playing the role of Carmen Sandiego is a dream come true. My sisters and I grew up playing Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego? We didn’t know who she was or why she was doing the things she did, but she was this smart, savvy Latina woman who was getting out in the world, seeing all kinds of places and exploring different cultures.
I idolized those things about her. And now I’m lucky enough to extend the story of a character who still inspires me every day, introducing kids not just to her adventures, but also revealing new details about her past.”
For those of who you want to join in on some Carmen Sandiego camaraderie, Netflix also created a separate website called thecarmeneffect.com, which examines and celebrates the impact of the character on her original fanbase. Will you be watching this show?
Let us know if you were a fan of Carmen back in the day! Were you a gamer or show-watcher? What’s your favorite part about the franchise: geography, mystery-solving, or catching criminals?