Carmen Sandiego (TV series)
|Based on||Carmen Sandiego|
|Theme music composer||Jared Lee Gosselin|
|Opening theme||"Carmen Sandiego"|
performed by Raquel Castro
|Country of origin|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||20|
|Running time||24–33 minutes|
|Original release||January 18, 2019 –|
Carmen Sandiego is a Netflix animated action-adventure series with educational elements, based on the media franchise of the same name created by Broderbund. The series is produced by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt with WildBrain serving as the production company, and contains a "serialized look at Carmen’s backstory that is told from her perspective". Serving as an origin story for the fictional thieving villain of the same name, it is the fourth Carmen Sandiego television show after the PBS game shows Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? and Where in Time is Carmen Sandiego?, and the Fox animated series Where on Earth is Carmen Sandiego?; it is also the first Carmen Sandiego show since the end of Earth in 1999.
The series sees many characters drawn from the franchise's 35-year history: Carmen Sandiego herself who debuted in the original World video game; The Chief who took her current form in the World game show; Player, Ivy, and Zack who featured in the Earth animated series, Chase Devineaux who debuted in Word Detective, and Julia Argent who featured in Treasures of Knowledge.
An interactive episode, titled "Carmen Sandiego: To Steal or Not to Steal", was released on March 10, 2020.
"Carmen is a modern day Robin Hood, traveling the globe, stealing from V.I.L.E. and giving back to its victims. Cloaked in red, she is accompanied by her hacker Player, and her assistants Zack and Ivy. Carmen is publicly perceived as a criminal by most law enforcement agencies – or actually, make that a master criminal due to the sheer scale and theatricality of her heists. We will follow her escapades and get to determine not only where in the world but “who” is Carmen Sandiego?"
A recurring theme is that both V.I.L.E. and A.C.M.E. make mistaken assumptions about Carmen's actions.
In season 2, Carmen seeks answers about her past, while V.I.L.E. attempts to keep their finances from plummeting even further into the red; the Faculty attempt to find a new fifth member as well. Thanks to Julia's encouragement, Carmen and the Chief make a loose alliance to take down V.I.L.E.
- Carmen Sandiego / 'Black Sheep' (voiced by Gina Rodriguez) - The eponymous heroine seeking to dissolve V.I.L.E. and donate their stolen funds to humanitarian causes; the proceeds go through Carmen's charity Black Sheep Inc, as subtle taunt to V.I.L.E. This Carmen is notably different than previous incarnations, who were leaders of V.I.L.E. and lady thieves. The story she knew was that she was found as an abandoned baby on the roadside of Buenos Aires, Argentina 20 years ago. At a young age, she used to be a student at V.I.L.E. Academy until she left when she didn't want to take the life of anyone who gets in her way after stowing away on a mission and seeing what really goes on in V.I.L.E. She takes her name from the brand name tag in the hat she used in her escape disguise. She is also nicknamed "Carm" by Zack & Ivy and "Red" by Player. By the end of the second season, Carmen learns that her mother may still be alive, and thus makes it her new secondary objective to find her mother.
- Player (voiced by Finn Wolfhard) - A white-hat hacker from Niagara Falls, Ontario who helps Carmen plan her heists. He also gives Carmen intel about the places she visits, keeping her updated on the local authorities, and possibilities she may have missed. Player is inspired by the live-action character of the same name from Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?, who in turn is a reference to people playing the video games; this version, however, has met Carmen in person at least once, as he has the stolen V.I.L.E. drive which he uses to plan out Carmen's trips to the caches of V.I.L.E.'s stolen goods. He cares for Carmen as a friend, and helps Shadow-san uncover The Chief's identity.
- Zack (voiced by Michael Hawley) and Ivy (voiced by Abby Trott) - twin siblings from South Boston helping Carmen after they met during a Donut shop heist which was a V.I.L.E. front. They are inspired by the A.C.M.E. detectives of the same name from Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?, voiced by Scott Menville and Jennifer Hale respectively. Ivy, the older of the two, often runs interference for Carmen, either through disguises or her engineering skills; she also is much more well-read than Zack, who habitually makes mistakes about their discoveries and is less experienced with going undercover (almost giving himself away when tricking the Countess), hence why he more often serves as Carmen's wheelman/getaway driver.
- Shadow-san / Suhara (voiced by Paul Nakauchi; main - season 2) - A master thief, skilled swordsman, assassin, and a former-member of the head faculty at V.I.L.E. teaching stealth and covert thievery. He gave a test where students had to find and steal a dollar from his coat when Carmen was still in school, and emptied his coat so she wouldn't be able to find the dollar, which caused Carmen's need to outdo Tigress. In the season one finale, Shadow-san revealed that he was really on Carmen's side all her life, and that he was the one who found her in Argentina when she was a baby. He emptied his coat in order to protect her from joining V.I.L.E. He is a secret member of Carmen's team as well, providing her with a new drive on V.I.L.E.'s financial data at the end of the season. By season 2, his treachery is revealed and he becomes an enemy of V.I.L.E. while helping Carmen foil their plans. In the Daishō Caper, his real name is revealed to be Suhara, having stolen his katana from his brother decades earlier and regretting the life he chose. In the season 2 finale, he reveals to Carmen that he was sent to kill her father Dexter Wolfe, a.k.a. The Wolf, a V.I.L.E. Faculty member, but witnessed his death by Tamara Fraser who then became Chief of A.C.M.E. He joins Carmen's search to find her mother, who went into hiding just before Wolfe's death.
A.C.M.E. (short for Agency to Classify & Monitor Evildoers) is the organization that often combats V.I.L.E., and in this iteration seeks to find proof leading to the dissolution of the criminal organization.
- The Chief / Tamara Fraser (voiced by Dawnn Lewis) - Head of A.C.M.E. and supervises all of the organization; she is inspired by the Chief from the PBS game shows, played by Lynne Thigpen. She has only appeared via hologram in most of the series, but believes Carmen may be a lead to helping A.C.M.E. prove the existence and downfall of V.I.L.E. By the end of season 2, it is revealed that her name is Tamara Fraser, and that she was the one who killed Carmen's father, Dexter Wolfe, the night she was taken in by Shadow-san; it's possible that due to her error in judgement that caused Wolfe's death, The Chief does not tolerate incompetence and issues agents with capture only gear, despite her own mistaken assumptions about Carmen. The Chief has been obsessed in her pursuit of finding evidence on V.I.L.E. ever since, for as yet unknown motivations.
- Chase Devineaux (voiced by Rafael Petardi) - A French Interpol Agent turned A.C.M.E. Detective. He, along with Julia, is one of the only two officers to get close enough to see Carmen's face. He is arrogant, pompous and constantly over-estimating his own abilities. By the end of the first season, Chase is put into mental strain caused by a device Brunt and Shadow-san used to force him to answer their questions. In season 2, after waking up from his coma, he provides a lead but is dismissed and returned to Interpol with a desk job, only to be fired for going off the grid in pursuit of Carmen and finds the Isle of V.I.L.E. only after it was destroyed. By the season 2 finale, A.C.M.E. rehires him after Carmen steals from their databanks.
- Julia Argent (voiced by Charlet Chung) - Chase Devineaux's partner and opposite: she usually does the logistics and fact finding that Chase would otherwise overlook or disregard; is more highly intelligent, competent and perceptive; and, unlike Chase, who constantly blames Carmen for the actions of V.I.L.E., is more open to believing Carmen is instead stealing from other thieves (in season 2, she in fact actively tries to recruit Carmen as an A.C.M.E. agent despite being undermined by the Chief's focus to outright arrest Carmen to gain intel on V.I.L.E.). She, along with Chase Devineaux, is one of the only two officers to get close enough to see Carmen's face. She is also the only A.C.M.E. agent to visibly keep her job for the whole of both seasons.
- Zari (voiced by Sharon Muthu; main - season 2) - a longtime pursuant of Carmen Sandiego's, who becomes Argent's partner in season 2. While focused and efficient, her loyalty is shown to lie with the Chief and not her partner, as seen in Stockholm when her team swarmed Carmen in talks with Argent to secure loyalty after Zari realized she was following a decoy (Ivy).
V.I.L.E. is short for Villains' International League of Evil (under cover as "Valuable Imports, Lavish Exports"). They make their headquarters on one of the Canary Islands and use the academy there to train their new recruits. As of Season 2, V.I.L.E. Island was destroyed after V.I.L.E. believed that A.C.M.E. had found them out.
- Professor Gunnar Maelstrom (voiced by Liam O'Brien) - The Swedish teacher of psychological manipulation. Unlike the 1994 animated series, Maelstrom is a member of V.I.L.E. Sinister and quite psychotic, often the classic Machiavellian type villain and coming off as creepy to the V.I.L.E. graduates. He often acts as a mediator and spokesperson for the head faculty as a group.
- Coach Brunt (voiced by Mary Elizabeth McGlynn) - The Texan teacher of combat and physical training. She was Carmen's favorite teacher, and the two had soft spots for each other. Carmen always thought that Coach Brunt was the one who found her, so the two shared a good relationship. Brunt, like the other faculty members, was quite upset over Carmen's betrayal. However, it seems that Carmen still has a soft spot for Coach Brunt. This is thought when Carmen gets altitude sickness and mistakes Dr. Pilar as Coach Brunt, saying that she always knew it was Coach Brunt who found her as a baby (however, that honor is revealed to go to Shadow-san). However, Brunt denies still having a soft spot for Carmen, saying that Carmen was dead to her after she left; it is still unknown if what Brunt said was true or not.
- Dr. Saira Bellum (voiced by Sharon Muthu) - An Indian mad scientist and V.I.L.E.'s master inventor; teacher of technology and science. She is shown to be slightly more reasonable than the other faculty, and has trouble understanding metaphors, but is willing to destroy the food supply of Indonesia just to shill in a market for an artificial commercial brand. She is of Urdu ancestry in this incarnation. She tends to multitask even during council meetings, focusing on numerous screens of information, much to Maelstrom's annoyance. It is shown on multiple occasions that she enjoys watching cat videos.
- Countess Cleo (voiced by Toks Olagundoye) - A wealthy Egyptian debutant and teacher of culture, class, and forgery. She seems to not really care that much about Carmen, and always tries to use her etiquette lessons to get rid of Carmen's rebellious streak.
- Roundabout (voiced by Trevor Devall) - An MI6 double-agent who takes the place of Shadow-san in the end of season 2. He utilizes his influence in British Intelligence to give V.I.L.E. a leg up on any law-enforcement that may zero in on their operations, as well as divert attention away with proper diversionary substance. Like his namesake, he speaks in the manner of one who received a prodigious education, but also uses that vernacular to imply something without saying so and leading people into how he wants them.
- Cookie Booker (voiced by Rita Moreno) - V.I.L.E.'s bookkeeper and financier. Rita Moreno was the voice of Carmen Sandiego in the 1994 animated series, a connection subtly referenced when Carmen steals her trademark outfit from Booker as a kind of "passing of the torch".
- Tigress / Sheena (voiced by Kari Wahlgren) - Also known as Sheena, Tigress is a spy with a cat-suit and mask, who is particularly antagonistic toward Carmen, even while at the Academy. She is the longest-running combatant against Carmen, who felt like she needed to prove she was better than Tigress at pick-pocketing due to Tigress acing a test set by Shadow-san that Carmen failed (however, this is only because Shadow-san cheated so Carmen could fail).
- El Topo / Antonio (voiced by Andrew Pifko) and Le Chevre / Jean Paul (voiced by Bernardo de Paula) - V.I.L.E. partners who used to be in Carmen's group of friends before she left. El Topo, also known as Antonio, is a wisecracking Spanish spy with streamlined powerful digging gauntlets; while Le Chevre, also known as Jean Paul, is a no-nonsense French spy with incredible parkour skills. It is implied that they are in a relationship, although it has not been confirmed.
- Paper Star (voiced by Kimiko Glenn) - A psychopathic master of origami weapons and a V.I.L.E. agent; she is Maelstrom's favorite pupil. While on the contrary, Shadow-san rightfully believes Paper Star to be too psychotic to carryout orders, as Paper Star refused to hand over the stolen goods to Le Chevre per V.I.L.E. protocol.
- Mime Bomb - A silent spy and snitch; dresses as a mime artist for public camouflage. He is usually used by the faculty to spy on the students, which is also how the faculty found out that Carmen had stowed away. However, they sometimes wonder if it was a good idea to hire a mime as a spy since they can't really understand what he's trying to say.
- Graham (voiced by Michael Goldsmith) - Also known as Gray or Crackle, Graham is Carmen's former best friend at V.I.L.E. However, after a failed mission, Graham had his memories erased by Bellum. He returned to Australia where he met up with Carmen once again (only this time, he didn't remember her) and asked her out on a date. However she left before she even got there, because she thought that Gray had a chance to start over, and that ‘Carmen Sandiego’ would ruin all of that. In "The Crackle Goes Kiwi Caper", Carmen recruits him to help her infiltrate Dr. Bellum's New Zealand lab, but upon his realizing Carmen's true mission, he helps destroy Bellum's experiment; they then finally have that date and talk more.
- Dexter Wolfe - Also known as The Wolf, Carmen's father and Shadow-san's predecessor as V.I.L.E. Faculty and Stealth 101 Professor. Wolfe was a master thief who was often allowed to leave V.I.L.E. Island due to his expertise. However, when Carmen was born, the rest of the faculty realized that he was planning to leave the organization and sent Shadow-san to assassinate him. By this point, he was attempting to make his escape with Baby Carmen to be reunited with his wife "Vera Cruz" but was accidentally killed instead by the current Chief of A.C.M.E. after hiding Carmen in the closet, leaving her to be taken to V.I.L.E. Island by Shadow-san.
|1||9||January 18, 2019|
|2||10||October 1, 2019|
|Special||March 10, 2020|
Season 1 (2019)
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|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|1||1||"Becoming Carmen Sandiego" (Part 1)||Jos Humphrey and Kenny Park||Duane Capizzi||January 18, 2019|
|In the present, Carmen Sandiego robs the Poitiers estate of Countess Cleo, a V.I.L.E. Academy professor, and is pursued by French Interpol Inspector Chase Devineaux and his junior partner Julia Argent. Fleeing the scene on a train to Paris, Carmen is cornered by her old classmate Graham, a V.I.L.E. Agent codenamed "Crackle" - as she lured him to a train knowing there was a tracker in the item she stole. In the past, Carmen, a mischievous orphan, grows up on V.I.L.E. Isle and enrolls in V.I.L.E. Academy, a school for thieves, the academy’s youngest person to do so. Given the code name Black Sheep by her mentor Coach Brunt, she makes fast friends and enemies. When pickpocketing a phone from a staff member, she is called by a white hat hacker called "Player" who hacked into the V.I.L.E. network, and the two build a covert friendship. When Black Sheep takes her final exams, she fails a test with Professor Shadow-san, and cannot graduate.|
|2||2||"Becoming Carmen Sandiego" (Part 2)||Jos Humphrey and Kenny Park||Duane Capizzi||January 18, 2019|
|Seeing her classmates going on their first mission, Carmen crashes the graduates' caper, touching down at an archaeological dig site in Morocco. There, Carmen meets with the dig leader and develops an appreciation for history and culture, but the camp soon comes under attack by the graduates. She saves the dig leader from Gray, but is captured and returned to V.I.L.E. Isle. Now, knowing the truth about V.I.L.E., she makes a new plan: stealing from them to dissolve the organization. Recovering her phone, she calls Player and narrowly escapes, stealing a hard-drive with all of V.I.L.E.'s funding and prospective capers for the next year. As she leaves, she takes the name "Carmen Sandiego" from the fashion store brand stitched onto her hat. Back in the present, she recounts her origin to Crackle, who she defeats and leaves for Inspector Devineaux. Meanwhile, Agent Argent finds the stolen diamond from the dig in Morocco; Carmen left it to be recovered by the authorities, instead taking back her old matryoshka dolls that she had left behind.|
|3||3||"The Sticky Rice Caper"||Kenny Park||May Chan||January 18, 2019|
|Escaping on the River Seine, a pair of unidentified agents pursue Carmen, but she escapes with the help of her partners: Boston siblings Zack and Ivy. Player navigates the trio to a secret lab in Java, Indonesia, where V.I.L.E. is developing a fungus designed to destroy the country's rice supply- after which, they would promote their V.I.L.E. imitation rice (although according to Carmen, the imitation was terrible, so even if V.I.L.E. succeeded, it’s likely that no one would buy it). Meanwhile, before Devineaux and Argent can interview Crackle, the "Cleaners" pick him up and take him back to V.I.L.E. Isle, erasing all evidence he was there. V.I.L.E. also orders Tigress, Carmen's class rival, to intercept her. Carmen's team track the supply truck carrying the bioweapon to a shadow-puppet festival, planning to covertly disperse the fungus in fireworks. Carmen engages Tigress in combat and is defeated, but Zack and Ivy successfully remove and destroy the fungus during the fight. Back on V.I.L.E. island, Crackle is brought before Dr. Bellum for debriefing, and she plugs a device on his head. The next day, the two unknown agents get a call from their Chief to begin "Plan B".|
|4||4||"The Fishy Doubloon Caper"||Jos Humphrey||Becky Tinker||January 18, 2019|
|While exploring a shipwreck off the coast of Ecuador, Carmen stumbles upon hidden treasure, but her old classmate "El Topo" battles her underwater while his partner "Le Chevre" confronts Zack and Ivy. The chase continues to the mainland after a tuna swallows an old coin; Chevre and Topo pursue the coin, believing that if Carmen is after it, then it must be worth a fortune. Carmen meets with Dr. Pilar Marquez, who tells Carmen of the historical value of the Ecuadorian doubloon back in the 19th Century, prompting Carmen to find it and return it to the doctor. Reaching a fish market in Quito, Carmen faints from altitude sickness, but Pilar finds and treats her. After Zack and Ivy find the right fish, a fight with Topo and Chevre allows Carmen a chance to reclaim the coin without their knowing. Carmen gives the coin to Pilar, and the two part ways as friends, as Carmen must intercept another V.I.L.E. target in the Rijksmuseum. Meanwhile, as Devineaux and Argent part ways after a long day, the two agents kidnap Devineaux to have a holographic conference call with the Chief of A.C.M.E, who is determined to prove the existence of V.I.L.E. and believes Carmen can lead them to it. But during the call, Argent finds them; both she and Devineaux are recruited to A.C.M.E.|
|5||5||"The Duke of Vermeer Caper"||Kenny Park||Greg Ernstrom||January 18, 2019|
|In Amsterdam, Carmen goes undercover to stop Countess Cleo, who's been replacing priceless paintings with forgeries. Carmen steals the last Vermeer painting on the list, and sets up a meeting. But awaiting their contact, Zack mistakenly opens the door to Cleo's assistant, Dash Haber, giving them only 24 hours to save the mission; Devineaux and Argent search for "The Dutchess", unaware that she is Carmen's alias. After preparing and following Zack, Carmen spots and eludes a following Devineaux. As Zack meets the Countess, Carmen infiltrates her manor to switch the stolen Vermeer collection with blanks. When dessert is being handed out, Cleo serves Caviar, and Zack - who has a fear of fish - is saved when Devineaux arrives to warn them that Carmen Sandiego is near; coincidentally allowing Carmen more time to steal all the paintings. Cleo then sees a woman with a red cloak motor-skiing away and finds her collection gone; Devineaux catches up with "Carmen", but it's Ivy pretending to be a tourist in a red cloak, while Zack and Carmen escape with the paintings. The next day, A.C.M.E. finds the chateau destroyed and no trace remaining, as well as all Vermeer paintings returned. In Sydney, Crackle gets off a bus in front of the Sydney Opera House.|
|6||6||"The Opera in the Outback Caper"||Jos Humphrey||Becky Tinker||January 18, 2019|
|In Australia at the Sydney Opera House during an Opera, Carmen finds Crackle, unrecognizing her and going by Graham. Carmen finds Le Chevre, who deploys a low-frequency device and leaves; Player analyzes Carmen's comms device data, finding a hypnotic suggestion by Dr. Saira Bellum directed at Jeanine Dennam, a Helio-Gem rocket scientist in the audience. Outside the opera, Graham asks Carmen on a date. Reaching the outback next day, Carmen and her team tour around Uluru as a Helio-Gem base is nearby. Player deduces V.I.L.E.'s plan: launch a defective "Boomerang" rocket to rain debris over the outback, forcing Helio-Gem out and V.I.L.E. to take over their contracts. At the launch station, Zack and Ivy protect Dennam, while Carmen keeps the rocket grounded. As El Topo hacks the station's audio system to play trigger music, Zack and Ivy restrain Dennam, but Carmen starts the 3 minute launch sequence. Zack and Ivy handle Topo and Chevre respectively, and once Carmen returns to normal she stops the rocket. When Carmen goes to meet Graham, she decides that he'll be better off without 'Carmen Sandiego' in his life. On the Isle of V.I.L.E., Professor Maelstrom assigns the next agent to fight Carmen Sandiego.|
|7||7||"The Chasing Paper Caper"||Kenny Park||Greg Ernstrom||January 18, 2019|
|Professor Gunnar Maelstrom schemes to steal all 17 pages of the Magna Carta, with origami weapons expert Paper Star; despite Shadow-san's viewing Paper Star as unpredictable. In Mumbai, Carmen predicts Maelstrom's plan and fights defensively, but is restrained and unable to stop Paper Star. When Le Chevre meets Paper Star at the rendezvous, she paper-cuts his hands to make him confess the next drop location, seeing him as an "easy mark" for capture. Player finds Paper Star on surveillance and tracks her to a train, where Devineaux and Argent are also on. Carmen cuffs Devineaux to a seat and swipes his A.C.M.E. ID Card, then greets Argent for a short talk before leaving; Argent realizes that she met Carmen and looks for Devineaux. Carmen and Paper Star clash again, but Carmen gets the upper hand by leading the fight to the roof where the wind counters the origami weapons. As Carmen retrieves the Magna Carta, Argent finds Devineaux, and Carmen covertly leaves the Magna Carta for Argent. When asking Player to hack Devineaux's A.C.M.E. keycard, she finds that Paper Star took it off her during their fight. On The Isle of V.I.L.E., Paper Star submits the A.C.M.E. keycard as a consolation prize.|
|8||8||"The Lucky Cat Caper"||Jos Humphrey||May Chan||January 18, 2019|
|In foggy San Francisco, Carmen attends an elegant charity auction. After buying a car for Zack, she discovers Mime Bomb stole a rare stamp worth $10,000,000. Following him to Chinatown, he stashed the stamp in a maneki-neko. Shadow-san sends in Tigress to pick up the stamp, and Coach Brunt secretly sends the Cleaners as unseen backup, while Bellum is trying to hack the A.C.M.E. ID card. As Carmen battles Tigress over the maneki-neko, tricking her with bait & switch, the statue was Mime Bomb's diversion to hold the real stamp. After encountering Devineaux and Argent, he slips the stamp into Devineaux's coat. At Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, Tigress rendezvouses with Mime Bomb and covertly steals the stamp from Devineaux's coat; leading Carmen, and by extent Devineaux, on a car chase to the Golden Gate Bridge. Devineaux crashes his A.C.M.E. car into the bay, while the Cleaners rendezvous to get Tigress, but Carmen manages to swipe the stamp from her and escape with Tigress' phone to call V.I.L.E. and gloat. Despite the defeat, Dr. Bellum announces she learned the owner of the A.C.M.E. ID Card: Chase Devineaux.|
|9||9||"The French Connection Caper"||Kenny Park||Duane Capizzi||January 18, 2019|
|Studying Devineaux, the Faculty find he is always where Carmen appears, seeing him as a partner. Shadow-san and Brunt are elected to interrogate Devineaux. After debrief with Chief, Devineaux accuses Argent of being Carmen Sandiego's "silent partner", and upon returning home, the Cleaners capture him and leave a message on the Dark Web for Carmen. Arriving in Poitiers, Zack & Ivy each disguise as Carmen to lure the Faculty members out, but when Brunt corners Zach, she realizes the trick and races back. Before passing out, Devineaux calls the Chief, who greets Carmen before alerting Argent to his location. Before Carmen can move Devineaux, Brunt returns and overwhelms Carmen, making one final offer to return, which Carmen rejects. As Brunt attempts to bear hugs Carmen to death, Shadow-san returns and stuns Brunt unconscious. He then helps Carmen escape before authorities arrive, but Brunt awakens also and escapes before capture. Elsewhere, Shadow-san reveals it was he who found Carmen 20 years ago, intentionally failing her knowing she'd reject V.I.L.E.'s mission. He tried joining her escape, but she got away without him, so he sabotaged the Cleaner's air-transport. Argent reports to Chief of Devineaux's condition, and The Chief believes Carmen took his keycard to lure Devineaux into a trap; Argent remains uncertain. As Shadow-san vanishes, he leaves behind another V.I.L.E. hard-drive for Carmen's next series of capers.|
Season 2 (2019)
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|10||1||"The Hot Rocks of Rio Caper" (Part 1)||Jos Humphrey||Becky Tinker||October 1, 2019|
|One week after learning Shadow-san's true alignment, Carmen's mind is too distracted and fumbles on a mission in Prague, but still gets a clue of uncut Alexandrite, learning V.I.L.E. is selling the stone source for funding in Rio de Janeiro, planning to use Rio Carnival as cover. The Faculty debate Shadow-san's fate as he is missing, as Le Chevre reports mission success in the Alexandrite mining. Meanwhile, Devineaux wakes up and gives details of Brunt & Shadow-san, but Chief has him put on permanent leave for his recklessness and is forced to go back to Interpol to work a boring desk job; Argent is partnered with Agent Zari and sent to Rio after CrimeNet deduced Carmen to be there. In Rio, Ivy & Zack get information from a dealer, and come upon Le Chevre who flees. A distressed Carmen is invited by a kind family to dinner, and they inform her of a likely V.I.L.E. safe house. There, Carmen finds a tunnel to the V.I.L.E. mining operation, but is caught by Tigress, Le Chevre and El Topo. Shadow-san then steps out of the shadows to congratulate them.|
|11||2||"The Hot Rocks of Rio Caper" (Part 2)||Kenny Park||Greg Ernstrom||October 1, 2019|
|Shadow-san elaborates to the V.I.L.E. agents his scarcity as being on Carmen's trail while pretending to earn her trust, but he drops a code phrase which informs Carmen of his true allegiance. When Le Chevre states an inaccuracy, Shadow-san uses his position to detain him and takes Carmen away. Tigress informs the Faculty of Shadow-san being there, relaying his story which reveals his treachery, and they contemplate the extent of his infiltration. Elsewhere, Carmen's crew work with Shadow-san, while Argent and Zari follow sightings of Carmen. During Rio Carnival, Carmen's team realize V.I.L.E. will use a Duck boat to covertly deliver the gems from Rio to Prague, and find a stray Dragon float. Intercepting on the water, Carmen and Shadow-san successfully retrieve the gemstones, and disguise the float as a duck to escape. Carmen uses her charity foundation, Black Sheep Inc., to open a community fund for the family that gave her dinner and their neighbors, with the value of the gemstones. As Shadow-san ponders what to do now that he blew his cover, Carmen invites him to join her. Agents Argent & Zari find them, but lose the thieves in the crowd, but an image capture of Shadow-san inadvertently links Carmen to V.I.L.E.|
|12||3||"The Daisho Caper"||Kenny Park||Greg Ernstrom||October 1, 2019|
|As Carmen awakes in Matsumoto, Nagano, Shadow-san has once more vanished. At Matsumoto Castle, she learns Shadow-san's Katana is part of a Daishō, realizing he stole the other half of the pair. Meeting with him, Shadow-san aims to return the katana, having stolen it as initiation as a thief. Carmen encounters Paper Star, who distracts her so Lady Dokuso, a veteran V.I.L.E. agent, can retrieve the Tantō; reporting her success, she is offered to replace Shadow-san should she prevail. Carmen meets Shadow-san, learning his true name 'Suhara' from the curator, who is his elder brother- Hideo. Shadow-san explains that, while Hideo was content with his scholar's livelihood, Suhara was not content living poor and became a thief. To prove himself, he stole the katana while Hideo saved the Tantō, and has regretted the choice ever since. Now understanding, Ivy covertly disarms the guards before Shadow-san fights, while Carmen fights Paper Star for the Tantō and entraps her. As Dokuso poisons Shadow-san, Carmen arrives and forces Dokuso to flee. They return the Daishō to Matsumoto Castle, and Suhara pleads with Hideo. While he still does not forgive Suhara, he allows him to return the sword. Shadow-san then joins Carmen's crew, no longer calling Japan home.|
|13||4||"The Fashionista Caper"||Jos Humphrey||Becky Tinker||October 1, 2019|
|After failing to stop V.I.L.E. Agent Dash Haber from stealing smart-fabric in Greece, Shadow-san deduces that Countess Cleo and Dr. Bellum are working together on a caper, likely an idea from an operative aiming to replace him as Faculty. Player finds chatter leading the team to Milan, where V.I.L.E.'s plan will be enacted. V.I.L.E. accountant Cookie Booker, in a bid for Shadow-san's old seat, coordinates with Bellum & Cleo in a plan to save V.I.L.E. from debt. Eavesdropping, Carmen learns Dash Haber is adding the smart-fabric to supermodel attire to mind control models, part of the plan to abscond with original Medici 14th Century attire. After evading A.C.M.E., Carmen enlists Argent's aid in securing the gowns, and fights off the mind-controlled models in a secluded space. Once Shadow-san swipes Haber's weaponized chapeau, he and Carmen destroy the mind-control hats, and stop V.I.L.E.'s plan. Taking Shadow-san to a clothing store, he changes his attire to something not as ostentatious as his Wafuku and Player finds a possible HQ location for the crew to have, which coincidentally happens to be the warehouse of the same brand of Carmen’s hat. On the Isle of V.I.L.E., as Booker's application as Faculty is denied, other operatives are looked at for the position.|
|14||5||"The Boston Tea Party Caper"||Kenny Park||Becky Tinker||October 1, 2019|
|As Carmen's team look at a building for a possible stationary HQ, they tell Shadow-san of their first heist: the Donut Shop Caper. One year ago, Zack & Ivy were a brother-sister racing team trying to earn prize money so they could get out of Southie, but after Zack loses against his rival racer silver spoon Trey Sterling and busts up his car in the process, the siblings had to ask gangster Shark Head Eddie for help, as he was the one who loaned them the money for the car. Eddie gave them a simple job- rob a donut shop which was a front for, according to Eddie, the Mob. It was there they encountered Carmen, who had to keep them safe as V.I.L.E. used the donut shop as a front for printing money with stolen treasury plates. V.I.L.E.'s plan was to print money as a way of buying prime real estate in Boston to expand their influence and enterprises. Despite Carmen's efforts to keep them away, the siblings still gave her help in finding and destroying V.I.L.E.'s money printing, making their own tea party. Realizing they have nothing in Boston, and to avoid Eddie, the siblings opt to join Carmen on her globe trotting capers. Hearing their story, Shadow-san adds that the V.I.L.E. Faculty had no idea how dangerous Carmen was to them. Following the story, Player relays V.I.L.E.'s plan to steal the world's fastest electric car in Dubai, and the team sets out.|
|15||6||"The Need For Speed Caper"||Jos Humphrey||Greg Ernstrom||October 1, 2019|
|V.I.L.E. operative 'The Mechanic' comes from London with a plan: steal the most advanced car in the world to make a fleet of V.I.L.E. super-getaway-cars. As Shadow-san coordinates with Player, Carmen's team go to Dubai to steal the super car to keep it away from V.I.L.E. As they infiltrate a Palm Jumeirah gala, Zack and Ivy come across Trey Sterling and his father Sterling Sterling, the latter who is supportive of the two unlike Trey. As the caper goes off, Zack is triggered by posters of Trey and makes a scene stealing the car which lands him and Ivy in jail. However, an impressed Sterling Sr. bails them out and offers them a job under him, while Carmen is angered that they risked the mission and calls them amateurs. This leads to the siblings coming to the conclusion that they weren’t meant for the life of thievery and ponder on whether or not to take Sterling Sr.’s offer. The next morning, Ivy & Zack find Trey tied-up realizing his "girlfriend" was a V.I.L.E. agent, 'The Driver', and follow her across Dubai. Clashing with The Mechanic & The Driver in a getaway blimp, Team Carmen save the car. Afterwards, Carmen waits for Zack and Ivy, who have turned down Sterling Sr.’s offer and rejoin her. As thanks, Carmen buys a warehouse to give the two roots to call home, and Player calls with a lead in Moscow; Carmen and Shadow-san go, while Zack and Ivy remodel their new home.|
|16||7||"The Crackle Goes Kiwi Caper"||Jos Humphrey||Steven Melching||October 1, 2019|
|In Moscow, Shadow-san and Carmen encounter Neal the Eel at the Kremlin, but he escapes. Player learns Neal stole schematics of "The Trip Wire" EMP weapon, which Dr. Bellum will likely improve upon. With Neal involved, Shadow-san deduces Bellum's lab to be in New Zealand. Player urges they have a skilled electrician on-site to manage the power grid hack, suggesting Crackle despite Carmen's wish to protect Graham. Still recruiting him in Sydney for 'a charity opera', they fly him to Auckland. As Graham's memories in V.I.L.E. were wiped, Shadow-san stays at their San Diego HQ, not risking triggering any V.I.L.E. memories or impulses. In the lab, Carmen deletes all Trip Wire data, but runs into Neal upon exiting. As Graham starts the "encore," he realizes the deception, enters Bellum's lab and finds Carmen mid-caper. She exfils Graham to the roof, but Bellum holds Auckland hostage for her capitulation. At the roof, Graham's subconscious V.I.L.E. training allows him to sabotage the Trip Wire, which Bellum destroys activating. Carmen finally has coffee with Graham, content V.I.L.E. is unaware of his involvement. Elsewhere, A.C.M.E. tracks Carmen and learns about Graham, believing him to be of use.|
|17||8||"The Stockholm Syndrome Caper"||Kenny Park and Mike West||Benjamin Townsend||October 1, 2019|
|With only Four members, V.I.L.E.'s Faculty reach an impasse on whether or not to abandon V.I.L.E. Isle. They ultimately decide to do so once their current class graduates, and motivates them to hunt down Carmen Sandiego. Elsewhere in Stockholm, Ivy dresses as Carmen to play decoy with A.C.M.E. agents, while Argent petitions the Chief to allow her a chance to recruit Carmen- which is approved. Alone, Carmen finds and talks with Argent about stopping a major V.I.L.E. plan; but when Zari spots Ivy is a decoy, Argent's plan is revoked and Carmen is swarmed by ACME agents. Barely escaping, Carmen is hit by tranquilizer gas while escaping, causing her to glide crashing into a forest; and Argent is incensed by Chief's actions. Meanwhile, V.I.L.E. agents Otter Man and Moose Boy capture Ivy, thinking her Carmen. With both the girls missing, Player directs Zack to find Ivy, trusting Carmen's survival skills. As Ivy escapes Otter and Moose, she also recovers stolen Gold Codes to complete Carmen's original mission, and reunites with Zack. Carmen reluctantly uses Argent's A.C.M.E. pen, having swiped it earlier, as a last resort. She activates it to call Chief for help, but faints from the cold before she can ask. She is later given over to her team to get medical help as a show of trust between them. It is believed she got frostbite|
|18||9||"The African Ice Caper"||Jos Humphrey||Steven Melching||October 1, 2019|
|Carmen's team admit her to a hospital for treatment, then move her to HQ while Shadow-san completes her missions as she recovers. Meanwhile, Devineaux analyzes all of Carmen's past capers, realizing the only anomaly is an isle of the Canary Islands with no data. As Carmen works to recover, she heads to Botswana which Player connects to an illegal diamond mining operation. Meanwhile, V.I.L.E. operative "Roundabout" informs Maelstrom of Shadow-san's involvement on a mission, compromising their mining operation. As Carmen's team discover the operation's extent and locate Brunt, Tigress corners Carmen until Zack and Ivy help to subdue her. Carmen calls the Chief for help, and Player transmits a visual of the Chief to Shadow-san, who recognizes her. As the authorities raid the mine, they narrowly escape a trap, giving "proof" to V.I.L.E. of Carmen's collusion with A.C.M.E. On a train to the airport, Carmen promises Chief a better outcome next time, later captured by Brunt and the Cleaners. Waking up, Brunt doesn't kill her, but informs her Shadow-san killed her father the night "he found her", leaving her tied-up to reel from the revelation.|
|19||10||"The Deep Dive Caper"||Kenny Park and Mike West||Duane Capizzi||October 1, 2019|
|Carmen ventures to the now destroyed Isle of V.I.L.E. to crack the main databank. Devineaux, stranded on the island following Carmen's trail, starts a fire and is then rescued, but was fired during his absence. After recovering the data, Carmen learns her father was Dexter Wolfe, V.I.L.E. Faculty and Shadow-san's predecessor as professor of stealth and thievery. Confronting Shadow-san, he reveals Wolfe was mostly absent as a teacher, but always delivered results. The Faculty then learned of his planning to leave V.I.L.E., ordering Shadow-san to remove him. After finding Wolfe's secret family life, Interpol swarmed Wolfe's home that night before Shadow-san could carry out the mission, and Wolfe was accidentally killed by Agent Tamara Fraser, the now Chief of A.C.M.E. After burning Wolfe's house, Shadow-san saved baby Carmen and her Matryoshka dolls; the Faculty then voted to keep her lineage secret and induct Shadow-san. After Player tracks the Chief, Carmen leaves her a V.I.L.E. data-drive, which allows Player to hack A.C.M.E. and corroborate Shadow-san's account. From that file, Carmen also learns her mother "Vera Cruz" faked her death and is somewhere in the world. Enraged by the hack, Chief Fraser reinstates Devineaux to hunt down Carmen, which he gleefully accepts.|
In early March, Netflix released an interactive game called Carmen Sandiego: To Steal or Not to Steal. While attempting to steal from a VILE building, Carmen learns that her friends, Zack and Ivy, have been kidnapped by VILE, who threaten to brainwash Zack and Ivy into VILE henchmen unless Carmen steals some objects for them. There are multiple endings that can be taken. Upon finding the good ending, a bonus scene will be unlocked, with all of the cast members but Carmen and the Chief singing the theme song from the 1990s game show.
On April 14, 2017, Hollywood insider information site The Tracking Board reported that they had exclusively learned of an animated Carmen Sandiego project at Netflix, that Gina Rodriguez as the voice of the titular character. The site reported that the 20-episode series would aim to be "as educational as it is entertaining", in keeping with the style of the franchise. It was later confirmed that the series will be called Carmen Sandiego. Rodriguez confirmed the story via her Twitter feed the following day in response to a Hypable story, which compared the news to that of a Kate McKinnon-led revival of The Magic School Bus. Carmen Sandiego was set to appeal to a wider audience (ages 6–11), plus the parents of those kids and fans of the original series. On April 18 and 19, the news began to be published by reputable news sites, where it was confirmed that Netflix had rebooted the franchise on TV by ordering twenty 22-minute episodes of Carmen Sandiego, which would premiere in 2019 and with Gina Rodriguez in the starring role. Rotoscopers noted that this was "more than most Netflix Originals receive". The Hollywood Reporter noted that Rita Moreno, who voiced Carmen in the FOX animated series Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?, had recently guest-starred on Rodriguez's show Jane the Virgin. The new series was described as having "thrilling adventure and intrigue", while offering an "intimate look into Carmen's past" and what inspired her career choices, essentially answering the question "Who in the world [is] Carmen Sandiego?" while simultaneously following her on her thieving escapades.
Caroline Fraser, Head of HMH Productions, is the Executive Producer of the series. Duane Capizzi, known for Transformers Prime and the Batman, is the showrunner and Co-Executive Producer. Kevin Dart serves as visual designer. It is a production by DHX Media, providing animation, and Chromosphere, providing the design work. DHX Media is the current owner of the library of DIC Entertainment, the animation studio which produced the Earth animated series. The series is produced by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, who own the rights to the franchise after their corporate predecessor Riverdeep acquired the property in 2002. The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the series followed in the wake of Bill Nye Saves the World and Julie's Greenroom. Finn Wolfhard is signed on to lend his voice to the character Player, who is described as Carmen's chief accomplice and friend. Another character called "Player" was featured in Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?, but this character was a fourth wall-breaking live action boy who bookended the show and interacted with Carmen, implied to be the player of a video game featuring her. E Online reported that the new series would be called, simply, "Carmen Sandiego".
Rodriguez, who had first learned about the series through the PBS game show Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?, asserted that the new Carmen Sandiego origin series was "tight", "well written", "really, really good", and "unbelievable". She mentioned that Netflix was a home for great programming and that the show had partnered with talented illustrators. She added that despite being entertaining, the show would still provide geographic and historical education.
Andy Yeatman, Netflix director of global kids content, explained “We think there’s a huge benefit of having a program that parents remember fondly and grew up with. We are giving them the opportunity to introduce it to their kids and spark a conversation", explaining that while the service pitched reboots of many '80s and '90s shows, Carmen Sandiego was one that "made sense" and "really stood out". They responded to the fact that this is not a show that is perennially rebooted, as the last Carmen Sandiego series ended 20 years before this new series would premiere, and that there are interesting ways to retell the story.
In March 2018, Netflix also ordered a live-action film of Carmen Sandiego, once again with Rodriguez as the titular character.
On February 15, 2019, it was announced that Netflix had renewed the series for a second season.
The announcement saw a positive response by the media, who appreciated the throwback, and a return for the Carmen Sandiego franchise to the small screen. TVShowsOnDVD wrote "It's awesome to see this franchise return to television". The Rolling Stone thought the TV series' origin story subject matter offers what was once one of "golden age of television's favorite thematic trappings". Commenting "children of the 90's rejoice", Maxim suggested that Netflix enlist the talents of World game show theme song performers Rockapella to provide music for the show. ScreenRant noted that "those who still hold fond memories of the property" would be intrigued as to what type of shape the new series will take; adding that it has a "storied legacy" to live up to and will likely take some inspiration from Earth. Dark Horizons expressed sadness that the show was two years away. WXIA-TV's Michael King said the news "has the Internet buzzing wildly". Toonzone wondered if the new show would maintain the established backstory of the red fedora-wearing villain, which in mid-to-late ‘90s canon involved Carmen Sandiego beginning as an A.C.M.E. agent before finding the work too easy so wanting to outsmart her former colleagues. Gizmodo thought the new series would "bring the character's trademark blend of edutainment to new audiences". Mashable said "fans demanding the series NOW". Pedestrian thought the trend toward series such as this was a sign that producers were aiming to " trap people in a downwards vortex of nostalgia ". Fortune suggested that the new show offered Netflix "huge merchandizing potential", and that the company could follow in the footsteps of Disney by creating a merchandising arm to support its shows. Rom-Game saw this as a sign that Netflix was "indirectly interested in gaming heritage". MiscRave mentioned how much potential the franchise with its interactive edutainment in a compelling package it previously had. NerdHQ noted that the new series offered an opportunity to resuscitate the "once-dormant" and "dying" franchise.
The show currently holds a 93% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 14 reviews, with the site's consensus reading, "Vivid animation and creative reconstruction of the Carmen Sandiego backstory elevates this property beyond its edutainment roots."
Awards and nominations
|Year||Award||Category||Recipients and nominees||Result|
|2019||Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Outstanding Individual Achievement in Animation||Elaine Lee as background painter for "The Chasing Paper Caper"||Won|
|Outstanding Children's Program||Caroline Fraser, C.J. Kettler, Kirsten Newlands, Anne Loi, Duane Capizzi, Brian Hulme||Nominated|
|2020||Annie Awards||Best Character Design — TV/Media||Keiko Murayama for "The Chasing Paper Caper"||Won|
|Best Music — TV/Media||Jared Lee Gosselin, Steve D'Angelo, and Lorenzo Castelli for "The Chasing Paper Caper"||Nominated|
|Best Production Design — TV/Media||Eastwood Wong, Sylvia Liu, Elaine Lee, Linda Fong, and Emily Paik for "Becoming Carmen Sandiego"||Nominated|
|Best Storyboarding — TV/Media||Kenny Park for "Becoming Carmen Sandiego"||Won|
|2020||Daytime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Special Class Animated Program||Caroline Fraser, C.J. Kettler, Kirsten Newlands, Anne Loi, Duane Capizzi, Brian Hulme||Nominated|
|Outstanding Directing for an Animated Program||Jos Humphrey, Kenny Park, Mike West, Flávia Guttler, Jamie Simone||Nominated|
|Outstanding Casting for an Animated Series or Special||Jamie Simone and Sierra Leoni||Nominated|
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