The animated series “Xavier Riddle and The Secret Museum” shares the misadventures of Xavier Riddle and his two best friends. The PBS Kids’ show follows the trio as they tackle the everyday problems that children tend to face by traveling back in time to learn from real-life icons and inspirational people.
The show, which is based on the “Ordinary People Change the World” book series by author Brad Meltzer, has been popular among children five to eight years old since it first aired in 2019.
This story will walk you through everything you need to know about the show and its key characters.
Who Are the Main Characters of “Xavier Riddle and The Secret Museum?”
Let’s meet the show’s main characters:
Voiced by Aidan Vissers, Xavier is the show’s namesake and the leader of his friend group, which includes his younger sister, Yadina, and their friend Brad. The eight-year-old usually wears his signature red hoodie with a black “X” and alien-style antennae on it. His hoodie actually contains a translator, which allows him to understand different languages when the trio travels back in time. He loves adventures and learning new things, so he’s always eager to travel through time to meet historical figures, see new places, and try new things.
Voiced by Zoe Hatz, six-year-old Yadina is Xavier’s younger sister. Much like her brother, she’s eager to explore the Secret Museum and enjoy time-traveling adventures. She’s known for carrying her stuffed turtle, Dr. Zoom, around during their adventures. Yadina is also known as a smart, talented, outgoing, empathetic and honest child — sometimes blunter than she should be — who dislikes meanness.
Brad Scott Meltzer:
Voiced by Wyatt White, Brad is more nervous and neurotic about their adventures than his friends are, sometimes hesitating to join Xavier and Yadina because time traveling actually makes him dizzy. As apprehensive as he is, he winds up enjoying their adventures after his friends encourage him to try new things. Brad is also a talented artist who loves to draw comics. He’s inspired by Brad Meltzer, the author of the book series the PBS show is based on.
Xavier and friends wouldn’t be able to have their adventures without Berby, the small flying robot who lives at the Secret Museum and serves as the kids’ time machine. In addition to transporting the friends back and forth in time, she’s also the museum’s curator. In this role, she ensures the exhibits are organized and set up in the place where they belong. Though she’s unable to speak, she communicates by using beeping sounds. She’s also good friends with Xavier, Yadina, Brad, and Dr. Zoom.
Yadina’s stuffed turtle is also known as The Shell Shadow Queen. She always wears a yellow cape, which the group sometimes uses as a parachute.
Supporting Characters on “Xavier Riddle and The Secret Museum”
The premise of the TV show is based on Xavier and his friends traveling through time to meet historical and accomplished figures. This means there are also numerous historical, inspirational, and important real-life figures who appear in the series, including:
- Amelia Earhart
- Harry Houdini
- Abigail Adams
- Abraham Lincoln
- Alexander Graham Bell
- Beulah Louise Henry
- Billie Jean King
- Bob Ross
- Catherin the Great
- Charles Dickens
- Eleanor Roosevelt
- George Washington Carver
- Jesse Owens
- Johann Sebastian Bach
- Kate Warne
- Leonardo da Vinci
- Mary Shelley
- Neil Armstrong
- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- Susan B. Anthony
- Zora Neale Hurston
- Albert Einstein
- Alexander Hamilton
- Florence Nightingale
- Frederick Douglass
- Jackie Robinson
- James Naismith
- Jane Jacobs
- Julia Child
- Mary Anning
- Nellie Bly
- Rosa Parks
- Thurgood Marshall
- The Wright Brothers
Where Can You Watch “Xavier Riddle and The Secret Museum?”
If you’re interested in watching “Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum,” there are a number of ways to watch it. First, you can catch it on live TV on your local PBS station, on PBS.org, on the PBS Kids Amazon Channel, and on the PBS video app. The show can also be streamed through Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, VUDU, Spectrum TV, Apple iTunes, or Google Play Movies.
- Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
- Zoe Hatz, Wyatt White, Aidan Vissers (Actors)
- Cory Bobiak (Director) - Meghan Read (Writer) - Jennifer Bradley (Producer)
What Is “Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum” Based on?
New York Times bestselling author Brad Meltzer, working with award-winning illustrator Christopher Eliopoulos, wrote the book “Ordinary People Change the World” to inspire kids around the globe and to give them heroes to look up to. He began writing it after he realized his own children were more interested in reality TV stars and actors than historical and iconic figures.
That first book launched a series, referred to by some as the “I Am” series, as each book focuses on a different individual with titles like “I Am Harriet Tubman,” “I Am Helen Keller,” “I Am Ella Fitzgerald,” “I Am Marie Curie,” “I Am Tomioka Tessai” and “I Am Temple Grandin.”
Meltzer partnered with 9 Story Media Group to bring the animated television series based on his books to PBS.
“For me, ‘Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum’ isn’t just a show — it’s my dream for my daughter and my sons,” the author said. “My dream is for all of us to witness how the most ordinary person can become truly extraordinary through their actions. I want to show kids that there is potential in each of us. Every hero in the show was once a kid — smart, curious, and full of adventure — just like them. They too can be heroes.”
What Themes Are Discussed in “Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum?”
Like the biography book series that it’s based on, “Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum” is designed to inspire children by introducing them to historical figures and accomplished individuals who they can emulate. It also strives to help children build character, kindness, and compassion for others.
Many of the heroes Xavier and his friends meet along the way have to overcome challenges and adversity before they can celebrate their accomplishments. This teaches children the value of determination, hard work, bravery, and sticking with things even when they’re tough.
“’Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum’ is a truly special show that will inspire kids to believe they can change the world. I can’t think of a better way to empower the next generation,” Vince Commisso, president and CEO of 9 Story, said about the series.
The books also tackle sensitive topics — like slavery or abuse — that might be difficult for some kids to understand.
“We have to be careful but we also want to make sure that we never dumb our stuff down. Kids are far stronger than you think they are,” the author told CBR. “Whether it was dealing with slavery for Harriet Tubman or the Holocaust for Anne Frank or sexual abuse for Oprah Winfrey, these are all moments where you could decide not to deal with it, but we feel like we owe it to, not just these heroes, but to the kids reading them to know that anyone you look up to had moments that were really difficult and hard, it’s why we show Abraham Lincoln dealing with slavery or George Washington losing multiple elections.”
What Age Is “Xavier Riddle And The Secret Museum” Appropriate For?
The TV series is geared toward children ages four to seven years old, PBS said. It targets kids in this age range by teaching them about societal issues and historical events in a compelling — but age-appropriate — way. It focuses on character building, as well as the historical aspect of the people the main characters meet on their adventures.
How Many Episodes and Seasons of “Xavier Riddle And The Secret Museum” Are There?
Since the show launched in November 2019, there’s only been one lengthy season, which ended in January 2022. The season featured 37 episodes, each one divided into two 11-minute stories and based on a different historical figure.
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