A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Kids in Space is a TV special full of adventure and excitement featuring the characters from the classic books and TV shows. The climax features a moderately scary scene in which a main character is in danger of floating off into outer space, but it never feels like she's going to meet her demise. The special also has very mild potty humor, like a monster character's green poop, and characters saying "'duties,' ha ha, I said 'duties'" and "pooga dunga doodie."
What's the story?
In THE MAGIC SCHOOL BUS RIDES AGAIN: KIDS IN SPACE, Mrs. Frizzle (Kate McKinnon) takes her class on a field trip to the International Space Station. The kids train for their mission on Earth with real-life astronaut Chris Hadfield (played by himself). They blast off into space and learn how astronauts do laundry and move around in microgravity. Then a series of miscommunications make one thing go wrong after another. Frankie accidentally uses the port-a-shrinker on a tardigrade (a usually microscopic animal). The tardigrade becomes giant, and the "monster" wreaks havoc on the space station. In the dramatic climax of the movie, Wanda goes on a dangerous mission outside of the space station, Frankie tries to save her, and their classmates have to work together to save both of them.
Is it any good?
This short movie brings all the humor, heart, and cool science facts typical of the series. The kids-turned-astronauts learn fun things about life in space, like why you can't actually eat "space ice cream" in space. Any kid into space, or really any kid in general, will love living vicariously through the Magic School Bus class. There's lots of silliness in The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Kids in Space, but also a great lesson about why it's really important to communicate when you're working with a team. And as a bonus, there's lots of STEM learning throughout.
Talk to your kids about ...
Talk to your kids about what life is like on the International Space Station. Is there anything about living in space that surprised them?
Would you like to be an astronaut? What kinds of science do you need to know to be an astronaut?
Lots of things go wrong in The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Kids in Space because the kids aren't doing a good job of communicating. Can you think of a time when you would have liked to communicate better?
- On DVD or streaming: August 7, 2020
- Cast: Kate McKinnon, Chris Hadfield, Matthew Mucci
- Director: Richard Weston
- Studio: Netflix
- Genre: Science Fiction
- Topics: STEM, Science and Nature, Space and Aliens
- Run time: 45 minutes
- MPAA rating: NR
- Awards/Honors: Common Sense Selection
- Last updated: October 23, 2020
Our editors recommend
For kids who love TV based on books
Themes & Topics
Browse titles with similar subject matter.
Top advice and articles
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
Streaming options powered by JustWatch