By now, it’s not a question of if you’ve watched The Baby-Sitters Club on Netflix but rather how many times. People of all ages are loving the series, which follows the lives and babysitting adventures of Kristy Thomas (Sophie Grace), Mary Anne Spier (Malia Baker), Claudia Kishi (Momona Tamada), Stacey McGill (Shay Rudolph), and Dawn Schafer (Xochitl Gomez).
When I say the show is exactly like the books by Ann M. Martin, I mean the show is exactly like the books by Ann M. Martin. Somehow, the creative team behind the Netflix series—which is basically all women—managed to keep almost everything the same. Considering the first book was published nearly 35 years ago, that’s a pretty impressive feat. The joyful nostalgia is all in the little details that they didn’t have to match but absolutely did. There are also some sly references to other pop culture titans in there. While we wait for Netflix to green-light The Baby-Sitters Club season 2, here are the biggest Easter eggs you might have missed in the show.
The credits in the show feature the sitters’ handwriting from the books.
If you read the books, you might remember that the chapters start with a handwritten letter or diary entry from one of the characters. Their handwriting matched their personalities: Mary Anne wrote in nervous slanted cursive, while Dawn had cool, carefree penmanship. Readers grew to recognize each individual’s handwriting, so LET ME TELL YOU that I screamed when I saw it used in the show. During the opening credits, you’ll recognize both Kristy’s perfectly proper cursive and Stacey’s cute handwriting, i’s dotted with hearts and all. (True story: I wrote my S’s like hers, chicly flat on top, for a full year. It ultimately didn’t take.)
Pretty much every character and location is the same.
Siblings, parents, peers, babysitting charges—you name it, the series kept it. From Kristy’s collie Louie to Burger Garden in Sea City, it’s all the same. (If only they’d included a shot of Claire Pike calling it “Gurber Garden.”) But nothing matched the book more than the boy drama. As is canon, Mary Anne has a crush on Logan, Claudia has a crush on Trevor, and Stacey has a crush on pretty much everyone else, including Kristy’s brother Sam, Scott the lifeguard, and Toby from Sea City. We didn’t get to see her have her first kiss in the Tunnel of Love—it happened just before they piled into the car and left town—but we’ll forgive that.
The BSC uses the same phone from the books.
Even though the show takes place in the present day, the girls still use a landline—it came with Claudia’s sister’s high-speed internet package. And it’s the same iconic see-through phone they had in the books. Nothing has ever been more ’90s than that.
Kristy writes the same essay on decorum.
In the first episode, after her teacher calls her out for being disruptive in class, Kristy has to write an essay on the importance of decorum. I have a vivid memory of her doing this in the book: It had to be 100 words long, and when she reached 98, she added “The end” to the bottom. An icon. In the show, Kristy takes it a step further with a feminist angle, lamenting that her teacher would never make a boy write an essay on the importance of decorum.
Kristy makes a Clueless reference.
The show could not go on without a lil nod to Alicia Silverstone’s most iconic role ever: Cher Horowitz in the 1995 movie Clueless. Alicia plays Kristy’s mom, Liz. And after a heart-to-heart about Liz getting married and Watson becoming Kristy’s stepdad in episode 1, Kristy’s internal monologue cheekily tells the audience: “My mom might have weird taste in men. But when it came to life, I guess she wasn’t totally clueless.” It was short, sweet, and incredibly satisfying.
Kristy and Mary Anne communicate using flashlights.
Now that everyone is glued to their phones 24/7, there’s no need for Kristy and Mary Anne to communicate any other way but via text. So it was an unexpected delight to see the two neighbors (whose bedroom windows face each other) reprise their old form of communication from the books: the flashlight code. Sure, it only happened when Mary Anne’s dad took her smartphone away. But still, we like to think they do it all the time. You know, for nostalgia’s sake.
Kristy invents Kid Kits.
Remember Kid Kits? In the books, every sitter arrives to their babysitting jobs toting a box filled with fun, games, and arts and crafts supplies to keep kids engaged and entertained. Because the BSC prides itself on actually playing with their babysitting charges—not ignoring them, like its short-lived rival the Baby-Sitting Agency. The Kid Kits are mentioned only a few times in the series, but it was a fun callback to the books to see Kristy come up with the idea.
Paris Magic is a callback to the books.
Mary Anne steps out of her shell at Camp Moosehead (Camp Mohawk in the books) and decides to put on a play called Paris Magic. Only TRUE fans know that this is the ultimate Easter egg. “In the final two episodes, Paris Magic, which is the play they do at camp, is mentioned by Stacey as a show that’s playing on Broadway that she wants to go see,” showrunner and executive producer Rachel Shukert told ET. “It’s not a real play, but it’s in the world.”
The BSC has a Queer Eye moment (as JVN would say).
Unless you’re living under a rock, you probably noticed that Claudia and Stacey go full Fab Five (er, Terrific Two) on the Spier household. Claudia acts as Bobby Berk redesigning Mary Anne’s room while Stacey attempts to give Richard some grooming tips à la Jonathan Van Ness. The Queer Eye theme song plays and everything, and honestly, we need a crossover episode ASAP.
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