Carmen Sandiego Wiki

The following is a transcript of the March 20, 2020 interview with Duane Capizzi.

(Questions from the first half).

Currently, how old are the characters (especially from Team Carmen)?

Duane: In our minds, Carmen is about 20 during the present timeline of our series. The Player's about 16. Ivy is Zack's older sister, she's about 19, littler younger than Carmen, and a little older than Zack, who's about 18. In the backstory, the day that young Black Sheep first got the call from Player, we figure she was about 16 or so, restless teenager, and Player was a very precocious 12. 

What was the inspiration for Gray's character?

Duane: We knew we needed Carmen to be telling her backstory to someone in the pilot, so that we could learn it too. Then it became more interesting if we thought, y'know, "what if it was someone she knew in crime school, who chose the other side?" What made it even more compelling, was once we realized we can give Gray amnesia. That's when things got really interesting.

How do y'all get inspiration for the villains? They're all so unique.

Duane: Some examples of newly invented villains were, we thought the lore was missing a climber, a second-story-man, so we came up with Le Chèvre. And we were missing a tunneler, somebody who liked digging and tunneling, and so El Topo was born.  For a spy and a snitch, Mime Bomb seemed like the perfect choice.

What inspired the reboot? It's been a while since the older version from the WOEICS days.

Duane: We felt we needed to make Carmen Sandiego relevant for a new generation, and part of that was seizing on the opportunity to create a strong aspirational Latina heroine.  And the whole idea of her being a robin hood really came organically, it was not something that forced, and it just felt so right to us. So thank you for those who seem to agree out there! I think ultimately though, the two important things are, she's still a thief, and she is still perceived by the law enforcement as a villain. We're just seeing it from her point of view this time, not theirs.

(Questions from the second half).

Any characters that changed dramatically from your original concept?

Duane: I can't say that any of our characters really changed that dramatically from our original concept, it's been really organic — and of course we had the original takes on the characters to sort of work with, so when we tweaked them or turned things on their heads, it usually came from a place of feeling organic and natural, we didn't change it just to change it. I think if you want an example, the one notable example would be Paper Star and in a minor way. She was originally conceived to be a male student, and it didn't take us long to figure out that she had to be female, and clearly we were right.

Will Chase Devineaux change his mind about Carmen?

Duane: I’ve actually been asked this before, from a place of “I love him so much! Why won’t you let him change?!” and my philosophy is this: I want it to feel earned. I want it to be satisfying when you get there, and there is such a thing as too soon. I think Chase is definitely on a journey. That said, for those of you who might have not picked up on it, I feel like Season 2 was a major big step forward for him. Keep in mind, that it's the first time he acknowledged out loud that he needed Julia, and the only reason he got so close to finding V.I.L.E. island was because he actually listened to Julia, for the very first time in our series! Granted, it was Julia in a dream, but that makes it even stronger! It was his own psyche he was listening to, — I love those scenes. I love the whole grocery store [dream].

What do you think of the fan reception to the show? The fan art, the ships, all that jazz!

Duane: Without a doubt, one of our great joys is when a new season launches, and then we start seeing the fan response. We love that you guys are on our wavelength and that you get it, and we love hearing the specifics, so please don't stop. We love the comments and the fan art. So much great stuff out there, we really enjoy it. Thank you so much. And thank you by the way for these questions!