Ridley Jones premiered on 13th July 2021 on Netflix. Created by Chris Nee, the animated series stars Iara Nemirovsky, Sutton Foster, Bob Bergen, Blythe Danner, David Errigo Jr., Laraine Newman, and Ezra Menas alongside other cast members.
Night At The Museum
If you were fascinated with the 2006 film Night at the Museum, Ridley Jones can be seen as the simpler and animated version of the film for a younger audience. Our 6-year old protagonist here is Ridley Jones, a protector of the historic museum. Throughout the series, she sets out for various adventures with her team that includes a Dinosaur, a Bison, a mummy, a Dodo bird, and a space monkey. Creator Chris Nee has chosen Ridley as her protagonist here on purpose. Nee states that there aren’t enough shows with female-action heroes and Ridley is here to make a change.
There are lessons to be learnt here, such as when Ridley is eager to take on more responsibilities before she is mature enough to handle them. However, Nee and her writers do not preach gender equality, instead, they allow Ridley’s escapades to illustrate their point i.e., a lesson in each story. Ridley Jones is a simple and heartfelt series that young audiences can binge-watch any given day and as adults, if you find yourself entangled in the series, without doubt, the series is worth watching.
“The thing I was excited about in the character Ridley was telling an action-adventure story for a girl and more than anything, telling a hero’s journey for a young girl, because I don’t think we’ve seen as much of that, and I think it’s therefore not internalized in girls, this idea of the striving of the hero. So I’m excited about that.” -Chris Nee
Another aspect of the series that caught my attention was the non-binary Bison, Fred. In the first episode, Ridley asks Peaches the monkey if Fred is “she or a he.” “I don’t know. They’re just a Fred,” replies Peaches and the action resumes. It is in these small and aware moments that the 6-episode long series finds its base. Other than that, there are moments of friendship, responsibility, and truth in the series that form a part of the thematic concern of Ridley Jones
Summing up, while there are a lot of factors in Ridley Jones that you must have seen in every animated series targeted to the younger minds. Ridley Jones makes a difference because of its lead as all the 3 leading characters are female.
Stream It or Skip It
STREAM IT! For impressionable young minds, Ridley Jones is a good start as it focuses on learning and values. There is diversity in Nee’s works that viewers also mentioned in her series Doc McStuffins and Jones, with her adventures, add to it. Lastly, the characters are as adorable as they get.
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