The Kids from Room 402
|The Kids from Room 402|
|Created by||Betty Paraskevas and Michael Paraskevas|
|Country of origin||Canada
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||52|
|Running time||22 minutes|
Fox Family Channel
|Original release||August 29, 2000– December 22, 2001|
The Kids from Room 402 is a Canadian-American animated series produced by CinéGroupe and Saban Entertainment that premiered in 1999 on the Fox Family Channel in the United States, and on August 29, 2000 on Teletoon in Canada. It consists of 52 half-hour episodes, the last of which aired in 2000, with reruns airing until 2002. The series was also seen in Latin America and Europe on Fox Kids, with the latter region still airing the series after the Fox Kids channels were purchased by Disney and changed their name to Jetix; remaining on their schedule until the Jetix channels were once again rebranded as Disney XD.
The series is focused primarily on a group of elementary school students. Miss Graves, their teacher, is usually shown as an interlocutor in the problems and injustices that are inflicted upon the students, whether the dilemmas be internal or external. Each episode usually ends with a substantiated moral or lesson resulting from such aforementioned situations.
The series is based on the 40-page children's book Gracie Graves and The Kids from Room 402 by Betty Paraskevas and Michael Paraskevas, published in 1995. This was rebranded in 2000 as simply "The Kids from Room 402" to match the show.
The cartoon was developed for television by Cindy Begel and Lesa Kite who wrote all 52 episodes.
Kids from Room 402
- Nancy Francis (Mindy Cohn in US version, Patricia Rodriguez in the Canadian and International versions) - Nancy is a red-haired girl with horn-rimmed glasses. Nancy is always trying to fit in and helps Jesse out a lot because he is picked on. Albeit good-natured, she is sometimes bossy. She is always trying to befriend Penny, but she is unsuccessful at that, and will sometimes end up being "friends" with Polly McShane who she resists instead. She is the main protagonist as well as Jesse.
- Jesse McCoy (Spencer Klein, Shawn Pyfrom, Justin Bradley) - Jesse is not the smartest kid in the school, and he is often picked on by friends including Vinnie because his mother treats him like a baby. Whenever he has a task or homework to do, he usually gets out of it by telling a lie to Miss Graves or sometimes his mother, but both of them catch on and give him different punishments. Jesse is bald and wears an orange sweater with blue jeans.
- Vincent "Vinnie" Nasta (Andrew Lawrence, Pamela Adlon) - Vinnie is the prankster of the class. He is a tall boy who likes to pull pranks on people. Even Miss Graves. Based on that, he tends to be a thorn in her side, to the point where she so often threatens to call his mother on him whenever he tries them on her. Vinnie wears a football shirt and has spiked up brown hair. He is also friends with Jesse, and the two pull pranks together on occasion, although sometimes he picks on Jesse mainly due to how his mother treats him. Vinnie has a big brother named Tony, whose former school projects Vinnie often tries to pass as his own but Miss Graves always remembers having already evaluated them during Tony's time. Vinnie once lost his friends when they learned his aunt married Mr. Besser but fortunately the wedding was short-lived.
- Polly McShane (Colleen O'Shaughnessey) - Polly, a proud Lithuanian, is considered a "teacher's pet" in both demeanor and appearance. Polly is very smart and has glasses, brown hair and a plaid dress. The other children, including the staff, can usually detect her presence due to her constant yodeling and obnoxious and intense disposition, especially on a count of her loud voice. She has an obsession with spoons. She is also well known for wanting to be the life of the party and be on top of everything, and for being a gossip and tattle tale to the heads of the school over other children she catches behaving badly. For all of these reasons, she is a major thorn in the flesh of everyone, especially Nancy and Miss Graves. She has a pet goat named Schnitzy.
- Penny Grant (Tara Strong) - Penny is one of the wealthiest girls in the entire school, as well as a very charitable and kind person. Penny is not a snob despite the common stereotype following rich kids in modern-day cartoons. She has blonde hair that helps her fit in very nicely. Nancy and the other girls from the class try to befriend her because of how wealthy and kind she is, but sometimes Penny doesn't even realize that she is rich, and that Nancy and the other girls are always trying to befriend her (although she doesn't despise them).
- Arthur Kenneth Van der Wall (Christopher Marquette) - An upper-class boy who is usually attempting to sell abnormally extravagant goods to the other children in the class. He has brown hair and wears a blue suit.
- Charlie (Crystal Scales) - A boy who looks slightly similar to Sanjay, with dark hair and a red shirt. He often wins what Nancy should have won. In one episode, the class switched seats to fool Mr. Besser when he became a substitute teacher, and when Nancy's report was worth an A, Mr. Besser mistook her for Charlie due to the seating arrangement plans (since he knew few of the students' names except Jesse and Vinnie, whom he often put in detention). And when Jesse got glasses that he couldn't see with, he was the swing vote between Nancy and Charlie, and, while intending to vote for Nancy, voted for Charlie by mistake because he couldn't see the names clearly.
- Jordan (Lauren Tom) - A Chinese girl who is very rich, but keeps that in a secret. Nancy finds out in one episode, promising Jordan to keep the secret out of fear her friends will think she's a snob. To keep them from knowing, she never invites anyone to her house, which ironically caused some people to think she's poor. However, when Nancy bragged so much about having a wealthy friend (without telling anyone she was referring to Jordan) her other friends started avoiding her like Jordan feared would happen to her if they knew she was wealthy.
- Gabrielle (Olivia Hack) - A girl who is usually seen with Jordan and Nancy. She mostly goes along with everything Jordan thinks or does, and although she is Nancy's friend, sometimes argues with her.
- Freddie Fay (Bryton McClure) - Freddie is basically classified as a nerd in the school and he often bemoans that fact. He has glasses, black hair, wears a yellow shirt and sticks out as an easily found school nerd. In one episode everyone picked on him because they thought he had wet his pants, when actually the water fountain sprayed him by accident.
- Tillie (Tifanie Christun) - Another of Nancy's friends, a tall redhead who is somewhat self-absorbed.
- Jenny (Jane Woods) - A girl with red glasses who doesn't have much participation in the class.
- Piggy McCall (Justin Jon Ross) - A slightly fat boy with glasses who is also a minor character, and doesn't interact much with the others.
- Melanie Bellanchof (Debi Derryberry) - A newer student to the school, she is Mrs. Bellanchof's daughter, her parents are either divorced or split up, as Melanie comes to town to live with her mother. She doesn't like living with her, and when referring to anything that she doesn't like will say either "Don't know", "Don't care" or "Smells". At her house, she is mostly seen on the phone talking to a friend from her old school named Gloria.
- Sanjay (Tara Strong) - An Indian student with dark hair, a dark red shirt, and speaks with an accent, who looks slightly similar to Charlie. He is often annoyed by Polly.
- Mary-Ellen (Colleen O'Shaughnessey) - A girl who is one of Nancy's friends. Doesn't have much participation in the series.
- Zack (Sam Saletta) - The bully of the school and a recurring antagonist.
- Miss Gracie Graves (April Winchell) - Miss Gracie Graves is a really great teacher. She acts as the voice of reason, which is why most of her students go to her whenever they seek help or advice.
- Mr. Stuart Besser (Rodger Bumpass) - Mr. Stuart Besser is the incompetent principal of the school. Noted for his stupidity and overweight stature, he is often satirized, whether it be vocal or written, by his students. His negligence and ignorance serves as recurring comic relief within the television show. Mr. Besser was once married to Vinnie's aunt, much to the shock of both males (Vinnie didn't know Mr. Besser was his aunt's husband and Mr. Besser didn't know Vinnie is his wife's nephew until the two of them met during the wedding party) but the wedding ended when she learned he expected to live at her expenses. Mr. Besser was oblivious to the fact Vinnie didn't like being his nephew.
- Nurse Pitts (Lori Alan) - The school nurse. She's obsessed with illness and also talks a lot about death. The kids, as well as the teachers, are scared of her.
- Coach (Bruce Dinsmore) - The school gym teacher.
- Roberta McCoy (Edie McClurg) - Jesse's overprotective mother. She usually treats Jesse like a baby and embarrasses him near his friends who sometimes mock him.
- Mrs. Amy Bellanchof (Pauline Little) - Melanie's mother who is a teacher attending Melanie's new school. However, as she didn't have a lesson plan, her students made little progress, which put her on the verge of getting fired. Although Miss Graves helped her improve her class by sharing her lesson plan, Mrs. Bellanchof dishonestly passed Miss Graves' plan as her own to win an award. In other acts that show her lack of honesty, she got custody of her daughter by lying to the judge about which parent Melanie would rather live with, and used her position at the school to have her daughter join the cheerleading squad despite Melanie trying to tell her she doesn't want to be a cheerleader. She also loses her temper easily, especially when Melanie complains and tells her she wants to go back to live with her father, pulling her hair and screaming when she is overly angry or stressed.
- Mrs. Francis (April Winchell) - Nancy's mother.
- Mrs. Myerson (April Winchell) - She is an obese woman with a very pleasant and respectable disposition. She wears a pink dress and has yellow hair. She lives in a neighborhood around the school. She briefly appears a couple of times in the episode "Bing, Bing, Bing, and a Shot".
- Mr. Miller (Mel Brooks) - He is the pool official of a pool in Miami that Nancy goes to visit. He gives her a hard time about things like hygiene. He appears in the episode "Squeezed Out".
|#||Episode title||Summary||Original air date (Teletoon)|
|1||Son of Einstein||Jesse gets the math book with the answers to the tests by mistake and it helps him become "smart". Because of this, he wins a prize at the math competition, but finds out that he has to answer the math questions in front of the whole school. Meanwhile, Nancy pretends that she has difficulty listening so she can sit up front with Penny, but instead she is sent to see the school nurse.||August 29, 2000|
|2||Welcome to Safety Corner||Nancy returns from her vacation in Mexico with a charm bracelet and soon she becomes popular at school, but the bracelet vanishes and Nancy believes that it has been stolen. Meanwhile, Polly and Arthur are selected to be crossing guards, and Arthur immediately sets up a toll booth.||September 2, 2000|
|3||The Used Gum Chewer||Jesse becomes an outcast after Freddie tells everyone that Jesse ate a piece of chewed gum that he found under his desk. Meanwhile, the kids try to watch a part of a documentary named "Chinook from the North".||September 3, 2000|
|4||The One Man Committee||Jesse is thrilled when he is teamed up with Freddie and Polly (the smartest students of the class) to present a committee report, because he figures they'll do all of the work and he'll get the credit. Meanwhile, in order to match with her friends' fashion, Nancy buys a fur hat, but it's too big and everyone laughs at her.||September 5, 2000|
|5||The Half Wit||Jesse wants to be the funniest kid in class, so he memorizes a joke book of insults. His popularity makes him to be invited to Mary-Ellen's birthday party, but then he runs out of insults and decides to use his own stuff - with disastrous consequences. Meanwhile, Arthur loses his ring and, in order to find it, he's hired to the Lost and Found office where Polly and Mr. Besser work. He manages to get Polly to get out of his way and keep all of the lost things to himself.||September 9, 2000|
|6||Shy Kidney||Nancy is excited when she is partnered with a new boy on a trip to a museum, only to learn that he doesn't speak any English. Arthur and Freddie try to find the vacancy toilet around the museum. Jesse tries to run away from his mother who joined the trip as a chaperone.||September 10, 2000|
|7||Is Your Refrigerator Running||Jesse and Vinnie obtain a faculty phone list and use it to make prank phone calls until Mr. Besser finds out, but catches Vinnie only and makes him his helper for a week as punishment. When Jesse listens that Miss Graves wants to talk with his mother about something, he's convinced that she wants to tell his mother about phone pranks and fakes illness to stay at home and guard the phone. Meanwhile, Nancy pretends to be Polly's friend to join her and Penny in a weekend trip to the Lithuania Dance Festival.||September 12, 2000|
|8||The Arthur Kenneth Vanderwall Library||Polly becomes a junior librarian and is determined to reclaim all of the library's overdue books, driving everyone crazy in the process. Arthur collects the books from his friends and opens his own library.||September 16, 2000|
|9||Free Lunch||Arthur pretends to leave his lunch at home when he learns that the cafeteria workers give great free meals to kids who forget their lunches. Meanwhile, in order to get revenge on Zack after he bullied her, Nancy tries to learn karate.||September 17, 2000|
|10||The Moocher||The kids get tired of Jesse's constant borrowing, so he finds a new mark in Freddie and even takes his homework. Meanwhile, Nancy tells the girls that she got a boyfriend named Jeremy, but Tillie suspects that he doesn't exist.||September 19, 2000|
|11||The Girl in the Plastic Bubble||Nancy is disappointed when she finds out that Penny is paired with Tillie at the sack race during Sports Day. However, Nancy becomes worried about illness before Sports Day. Meanwhile, Jesse is told by Miss Graves to take it easy in class after he bumps his nose and has to wear a bandage, but he takes advantage of the situation and wears it longer than he needs to.||September 23, 2000|
|12||Over the River and Through the Swamp||Arthur prepares to sing a solo at the school music festival until Polly barges in and turns his song into a duet. Meanwhile, Jesse cuts pictures from a book to put them in his report about mammals, but fears that someone will find out.||September 24, 2000|
|13||Pretty As a Picture||Freddie discovers that he and Polly are wearing the same cowboy shirt on picture day, so he tries to cover his shirt. Meanwhile, Jesse forgets about the biology test and tries to study until the test.||September 26, 2000|
|14||The Anti-Mucous Forming, Artery Clogging, Energy Zapping Diet||Penny begins to eat healthy food, so Nancy decides to eat healthy food too to match with her. Meanwhile, Freddie plans to take 10 friends to Monsterland, but Jesse and Vinnie want him to take fewer kids, so they can go on more rides.||September 30, 2000|
|15||All Polly All The Day||Polly takes over reading the announcements over the school's public address system and soon starts to broadcast everyone's misdeeds. Meanwhile, Jesse stays at home for few weeks due to his ankle injury. At first, he wants to have fun, but Miss Graves decides to make him participate in the class with the help of the camera.||October 1, 2000|
|16||Spoons, Spiders and Space Beasts||Jesse and Vinnie enter a science fair when they learn that the winners get to go to Space Camp, but they are caught cheating. Nancy and Penny do a project about bugs for the science fair. Polly chooses Freddie and they make a project about spoons, which Freddie sabotages.||October 3, 2000|
|17||Mercury in Retrograde||Nancy is convinced that her bad luck is determined by the stars, so she turns to a Web astrology chart for guidance. Meanwhile, Freddie is accidentally sprayed by the water fountain, with everyone thinking that he had wet his pants.||October 7, 2000|
|18||Bad Seed||Jesse takes credit for a prank and is sent to Mr. Karl's class, where he encounters the school's toughest kids, who seem to never do any real work. Meanwhile, the school's classes prepare for a fire test, but most of class 402 sneak to the pool party at Arthur's aunt's house.||October 8, 2000|
|19||There Must Be A Pony||The girls try to avoid Polly, only to meet her in a park where she is riding a pony, which then makes them all (except Nancy) want to become friends with her. Meanwhile, Jesse tells Miss Graves that he sent his report about Tom Sawyer to his grandparents.||October 10, 2000|
|20||Mrs McCoy's Baby Boy||Jesse loses friends when he complains about missing a turn in a volleyball game and his mother gets involved. She treats him like a baby in front of his classmates and they begin to treat him like a baby too. Meanwhile, Nancy finds out that Jordan is very rich.||October 14, 2000|
|21||Eenie Meenie||Jesse and Vinnie start using swear words at school after some tough boys curse at them for playing a babyish video game. When Polly catches them, they must stop swearing to prevent Mr. Besser and Miss Graves from contacting their parents. Meanwhile, Nancy and the girls play many games to choose the first pair to play ping-pong which all end up failing.||October 15, 2000|
|22||Bing, Bing, Bing and a Shot||Polly updates the school's medical records and discovers that Jesse didn't have all of his required shots, thus making him get six of them. Meanwhile, the girl Squirrel Team delivers cookies from door to door and the two best delivery girls will go to the Squirrel camp. Nancy tries to be the best delivery girl, so she can go to the camp with Penny.||October 17, 2000|
|23||The Hand That Rocks the Cradle||Nancy and Arthur try babysitting to make extra money.||October 21, 2000|
|24||The Low Sodium, Adult Swim Only, Early Bird Special Vacation||Nancy is surprised to meet Polly when she visits her relatives in Miami.||October 22, 2000|
|25||Jesse Magoo||Jesse cheats on an eye exam, which results in him having to get glasses. Meanwhile, Nancy and Charlie compete for the best sportsmen at school.||January 17, 2001|
|26||Your Body is Changing||The kids watch a movie about the facts of life and have different reactions to it. Jesse misses most of the movie because of his mother, making him still not knowing where babies come from. Meanwhile, Polly opens a spoon hospital.||October 28, 2000|
|27||I Got a Boyfriend||Nancy becomes Vinnie's girlfriend. Meanwhile, because of his aunt having a pool party, Arthur learns how to swim, but the teacher is Polly.||January 4, 2001|
|28||The Peep and the Sheep||The kids compete in a Halloween costume contest. Jesse and Vinnie make a deal that they don't wear the Space Beast costume, but they end up breaking the deal. Nancy goes as Little Bo Peep and sees someone as a sheep, thinking that is Penny and not realizing that is actually Polly.||January 9, 2001|
|29||The School Fair||The kids compete at the school's fair to create the best booth.||January 11, 2001|
|30||A Visit to Nana and Pop-Pop's||Jesse visits his grandparents and he misses the spelling test. Meanwhile, back at school, Vinnie is sent to detention with Mr. Besser.||January 18, 2001|
|31||Chi Whiz||Nancy tries to convert her class to Feng Shui.||January 25, 2001|
|32||Simon of London||Nancy wants a haircut made by Simon from London, but she realizes that he makes the haircuts for celebrities only. Nancy gets a haircut made by Nigel the cleaner and now she looks like a poodle. Meanwhile, Polly refuses to accept anything less than a perfect grade on a school paper.||February 1, 2001|
|33||The Dumb Bunny||Jesse skips his remedial math class. Meanwhile, Polly sells commemorative spoons.||February 8, 2001|
|34||A Very Nancy Christmas||Everyone wants to get even with Nancy when she takes over as writer, director and star of the school's play about Christmas. And they plan to do so on the night of the performance.||December 22, 2001|
|35||Mr Beeser the Liver Butcher||Mr. Besser is compelled to substitute for Miss Graves when she calls in sick. When she finds out that there was a mix-up, she decides to have a day off. Meanwhile, back at school, Vinnie does a report about Mr. Besser, the Liver Butcher. Vinnie fears that Mr. Besser will punish him when he finds out. Luckily, Vinnie wrote Mr. Besser's name wrong.||February 15, 2001|
|36||The Election Show||Polly runs for school president. When she wins the election, she decides to change all at school. Her plan backfires.||February 22, 2001|
|37||The Clique||Nancy is thrilled when she breaks into a cool clique at school. Meanwhile, Jesse receives some nifty gifts for his good behavior.||March 1, 2001|
|38||The Gazotski||Polly teaches Sanjay a dance called the Gazotski. Meanwhile, Miss Graves shares her lesson plans with Miss Bellanchof, who is at risk of being fired from the school.||March 8, 2001|
|39||The Sidewalk Boys||Nancy manages to obtain a hard-to-get press pass to see the hit group, The Sidewalk Boys.||March 15, 2001|
|40||Uncle Bonehead||Mr. Besser marries Vinnie's aunt. Meanwhile, Polly teaches a class on fire safety at school.||March 22, 2001|
|41||Squirrel Girls and Boys||Arthur is nervous when he goes camping with the Squirrel Scouts because he's afraid to change his clothes in front of the others. Meanwhile, Nancy tries to spend time with Penny, but she gets stuck with Polly instead.||September 6, 2001|
|42||Don't Know, Don't Care, Smells||Miss Graves has trouble reaching a new student who's Miss Bellanchof's daughter, Melanie Bellanchof. Meanwhile, Nancy chooses to study India for an assignment and comes to believe that she had a previous life as a Hindu princess. Polly and Jordan argue about their assignments about Lithuania and China.||September 13, 2001|
|43||Don't Put Your Fingers in the Light Socket||Polly becomes Jesse's new babysitter, and he tries to keep that as a secret from the kids at school, but they eventually find out.||September 20, 2001|
|44||Squeezed Out||Nancy becomes the center of attention soon after she joins the garden club because of her knowledge about growing vegetables, but when she returns from a trip to Miami, she discovers that she's been forgotten.||September 27, 2001|
|45||By Invitation Only||Melanie is grounded, but her mom lifts it when Melanie starts to receive numerous party invitations. Meanwhile, Vinnie draws a picture called "Two Peaks" which annoys Miss Graves, but he insists that it is only a drawing of two mountains.||October 4, 2001|
|46||It Takes Your Breath Away||Nancy suffers from asthma and she tries to keep that a secret from the kids at school.||October 11, 2001|
|47||No Refunds, No Exchanges||Jesse sings to the exchange program to copy from the exchange student. An exchange student, Lars Svenholm, from Outer Maledonia comes to Jesse. However, Lars turns out to be the same as Jesse. Jesse realizes that as a part of the exchange program, he'll have to leave to Outer Maledonia. Meanwhile, Polly opens the spoon school.||October 18, 2001|
|48||The Slam Book||Fed up with that nobody from the class likes her, Melanie decides to create a slam book and write something about someone. The girls begin to fight when they write bad things about themselves on the slam book.||November 1, 2001|
|49||Schnitzy R.I.P.||Polly's goat, Schnitzy, has died, and Polly becomes very depressed. Nancy is forced to help Polly.||November 8, 2001|
|50||For Whom the Bell Tolls||After watching Amber Amberset's new music video, Nancy and the girls begin to wear rebellious clothes and the bells. The only one who isn't happy with all this is Mr. Besser. Meanwhile, to be more cool than Zack, Jesse and Vinnie decide to wear earrings. Jesse fears that he will get hurt while putting on the earrings.||November 15, 2001|
|51||Believe It or Not||Miss Graves struggles with driving Nurse Pitts to school. In order to make sure that she doesn't find out that he didn't write his report about the planets, Jesse convinces Miss Graves to become forgetful because of Nurse Pitts. Meanwhile, Nancy is frightened by the tales about Billy Woofchuck who died when he answered the phone during a rainstorm.||November 22, 2001|
|52||HIQ||Mr. Besser mistakes Jesse and Polly's scores of their IQ tests. Because of this, Jesse goes to the class for geniuses and Polly is forced to hang out with the dumb kids. The truth comes out when Jesse and Polly reveal their true school intelligences.||November 29, 2001|
- "Gracie Graves and the Kids from Room 402". Publishers Weekly.
- "GRACIE GRAVES AND THE KIDS FROM ROOM 402". Kirkus Reviews.
- The Kids from Room 402. Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books. 2000.
- "Television Program Logs". Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission. 2016-03-02. Archived from the original on 2016-05-16.