Just because YouTube largely gave up on a streaming service-type channel (YouTube Red, which Cobra Kai premiered on) doesn’t mean they aren’t still delivering original content. It’s just going, appropriately enough, in their YouTube Originals subsite. And the latest addition is Super Sema, produced by the Nairobi-based children’s edutainment media and technology startup Kukua.
The center of Sema is Sema herself — a young girl who runs a secret laboratory with her twin brother. They use their discoveries not just to improve the quality of life in Dunia, the city they live in, but to defend it from the evil schemes of a robotic villain. The series takes place in a futuristic version of Africa (which is where the show was made).
Super Sema was written by four-time BAFTA winner Claudia Lloyd (Charlie & Lola, Mr. Bean, Tinga Tinga Tales) and directed by Lynne Southerland, the first female African-American director for Disney (Mulan II). The press release doesn’t mention who is voicing the main characters, but it does reveal Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave, Black Panther, Us) plays a major character in an upcoming two-part episode. She also narrates the trailer.
The first episode of Super Sema is available now on YouTube Originals; more episodes will be released through March and April.
In each Super Sema episode, Sema and her twin brother MB use their “technovating” powers to save their town of Dunia from a heartless robot uber villain. From their Secret Lab — an amazing den of invention and ingenious recycling — they code world-changing apps, create energy from waste, engineer solutions for their community, develop virtual worlds, and might even launch a space rocket, but be home in time to print 3D pizzas!