The original Magic School Bus became a kids cult classic for most of us '90s kids and babies out there. When the trailer for a Magic School Bus reboot graced our screens three years ago, the internet collectively freaked out – but not exactly in a good way. Fans are now re-experiencing those mad feelings about the reboot, especially when it comes to Netflix's handling of the new Miss Frizzle.
Some might be wondering what good reason could there be that the new Magic School Bus, voice led by SNL actress Kate McKinnon and with theme music by Lin-Manuel Miranda, is trending on Twitter again. Isn’t this old news? Well, I should sit all those Boomers and Gen Zers down and explain that the original show introduced a generation of kids to the world of science like never before. With this, it's material that any creative should tread lightly with in regard to a reboot. What is dead will never die, to quote Game of Thrones, and the diehard fans still have gripes with the reboot's animation and characters.
The biggest faux pas for fans regarding Netflix's Magic School Bus Rides Again series is the animation redesign. Instead of the hand drawn and lively animation from the original, the reboot opts for a sleek computer generated animation. Fans on Twitter are arguing that the reboot could have made some changes for the better:
In other words, for a number of fans, the new-age animation of the reboot took away the aesthetic nostalgia associated with the original. As one Twitter user put it:
As seen in the above tweet, numerous fans seem to be mistaking Miss Frizzle with the new lead, her sister Fiona Frizzle. That’s right – Miss Frizzle isn’t the lead of the reboot. This is disappointing to some because Miss Frizzle was the quirky heart and soul of the show. She has even become somewhat of a queer icon of late for her style alone, but many fans are claiming that the reboot has erroneously revised her as a straight woman:
Another huge reason fans are mad at the Magic School Bus reboot (again) is because Miss Frizzle’s students appear to be “white-washed.” Kids who were dark-skinned in the original show are now visibly lighter – and that's been frowned upon given that the entertainment industry has been aiming for more diversity and inclusivity. See this fan’s reaction:
Handling nostalgic properties can be tricky and, in the era of reboot announcements, this is something many studios are dealing with. Shows like The Magic School Bus are tied to countless childhoods, so audiences are going to be very particular when it comes to re-imaginings. In fairness, creatives ideally want to satisfy all viewers but, when reviving something as beloved as this show, it's likely that there will be a mixture of responses. One would hope that a reboot can strike a balance that allows it to appeal to viewers of all generations.