Actor and rapper Ludacris discussed the influences and inspirations behind his animated series, “Karma’s World.” The series represents and explores the joys and challenges of Black girlhood. With the recent challenges North West and Cardi B’s daughter, Kulture, have faced on social media, the show may provide important lessons for how Black girls can safely navigate the space.
Karma’s World: The Show Ludacris Wanted
Actor and rapper Ludacris, when coming up with ideas for a children’s show, said he wanted it to be one where his daughters would be represented. What he created was “Karma’s World,” an animated children’s series following and depicting the life of Karma, a 10-year-old Black girl, and aspiring musical artist.
Season 2 premiered on Netflix, Thursday, March 10, and covers body shaming, setting boundaries, and other important topics in a way that is both entertaining and taught in a manner that children can understand.
With four daughters of his own, his youngest being 7 months old and his oldest at 20, Ludacris is keenly aware of the challenges faced by black girls in a social media-driven world. Recently, rapper Cardi B privatized her daughter Kulture’s accounts after trolls posted cruel and racially offensive messages to the four-year-old’s Instagram page.
Karma’s World addresses identity and self-worth, themes that were inspired by the experiences of Ludacris’ 20 years-old daughter Karma. In a season two episode, “We Dance Full Out,” Switch, who is Karma’s best friend, suffers from bullying due to her looks. Ludacris explained that the episode was inspired by his daughter Karma when she became self-conscious about her weight.
Ludacris serves as not only the executive producer but also plays the voice of Karma’s father, Conrad, who displays the pertinent role parents have in supporting children’s dreams, ambitions, goals while being a guiding force with any challenges that they face. The role of the father as a guiding force is a topic recently addressed by Kanye West, who says he is determined to have a say in the social media presence of his 8-year old daughter, North West.
Ludacris said that he feels so many children and families resonate and see themselves within the show because young viewers face these exact same challenges both on social media and in real life.
The show is set to follow the experiences of the main character, Karma, as well as her friends, Karma’s World provides Black and Latino children representation on screen, who are most often left out and have very limited representation in children’s cartoons. Ludacris stated that this representation in “Karma’s World” is empowering and enriching.
For my own daughters, I would love for them to see a show like the one I’ve created,” Bridges said, “where they can see their hair represented and the texture represented, and hear about real life situations that they’re going through … and just constantly reminding kids that the sky’s the limit — and they can go after their dreams, and they can make change, no matter how young they are, starting in their own neighborhood.
Season 2 of Karma’s World is streaming now on Netflix and includes a line of dolls with Mattel as well as an official album out with songs including “Proud of My Hair,” “Open Your Heart” and “Reach the Top” – three tunes that promote self-confidence.