This article is about the original character. You may be looking for the sequel character.
Janet Perlstein
Msb glis14
First Appearance The Magic School Bus Lost in the Solar System (1990)
Catchphrase "Prove it!"
Family Arnold Perlstein (cousin)
Mr. and Mrs. Perlstein (uncle and aunt)
Arizona Joan (great-aunt)
Unnamed grandfather
Alex (father or possible uncle, chapter books)
Unnamed mother
Voiced By Renessa Blitz (Season 1-4)
Annelise Forbes (Season 5-6)

Janet Perlstein is Arnold's cousin. She is voiced by Renessa Blitz in the original series and Annelise Forbes in The Magic School Bus Rides Again.


Janet is Arnold's abrasive, stubborn, arrogant, know-it-all yet lovely cousin who tends to brag about how she can be better at anything. She most often tries to sabotage the class in some way to gain something for herself. She initially appeared in the book The Magic School Bus Lost in the Solar System, where it was stated that she went to another school. In the the 1994 TV series, she visits from another class at the same school. She is considered by many to be the worst character in the series because of her rude personality.

Physical Appearance and Attire

Janet has curly orange hair, much like her cousin Arnold. She also wears attire similar to his and the same colors, except with short sleeves, and a skirt. She has the letter J on the front of her shirt. Her glasses are pink with oval frames. She wears yellow and white striped socks and blue Mary Janes. Her signature colours are blue and yellow like her cousin.

In the computer games in her only appearance in The Magic School Bus Explores the Solar System, her hair is blonde and her glasses appear about the same style but in red.

In Works Out, she wore a golden yellow hooded jumper with the letter J in blue, golden yellow trousers, and red and white sneakers.

In Gets Swamped, when she agreed to go with Valerie's class, she wore a yellow rain hat, a blue rain coat with the letter J in yellow, and yellow gumboots.

The Magic School Bus Rides Again Janet

Janet's appearance in the reboot.

In the new series, Janet's hair is longer and straight. Her glasses are now more square-shaped like her cousin's, and her yellow and white striped shirt is replaced with a fully green shirt, she retains her skirt to which she sometimes wears black shorts underneath, and brown ballet flats. She now has freckles.


Season One

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Janet's first appearance is in "Gets Lost in Space". She starts off as an insufferable know-it-all who constantly brags and redeems herself in the end when Arnold freezes himself to show what would happen if she stayed on Pluto. This is her only appearance in season one.

Season Two

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When she returns in "Butterfly and the Bog Beast", she's back to her old manipulative self, but she's more despicable than before. She successfully turns the class against Phoebe when she points out they're playing her old school in soccer that afternoon, but at the end, she sees the error of her ways. This is her only appearance on season two.

Season Three

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Despite redeeming herself in "Butterfly and the Bog Beast", Janet is back to her former self in "Gets a Bright Idea", where she uses Arnold to trick the class in order to prove that a magic show would have been a better class trip than a light show. Arnold isn't too happy when he realizes she was using him for her own personal gain, but he seems to forgive her at the end, laughing off the whole thing. In "Works Out", she has no moment of redemption, though Mr. Sinew, who she was supporting in the Teacher Triathlon, congratulates Ms. Frizzle for winning. She has a brief appearance in "Goes Upstream", her last appearance in season three.

Season Four

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Janet's next major role isn't until "Gets Swamped", when she's debating Carlos on whether or not a new mall should be built on the wetlands. If not for the flood, she would have been successful in getting the town to vote yes on the mall. She has another brief appearance in "Sees Stars", Arnold showing embarrassment when he sees that she's the one who buys the star the class wanted to get Dorothy Ann for her birthday. In "Makes a Stink", she deliberately sabotages the class when they make a fantastic smell for the scent competition. Like in "Works Out", she doesn't have a moment of redemption.



  • During the producer's segment in "Butterfly and the Bog Beast", the producer described her character as "insensitive and inappropriate".
  • Neptune is her favorite planet, and in the computer game The Magic School Bus Explores the Solar System, she does the report on that planet, and she is the one whom the player controls on that planet in search for the Ms. Frizzle Token. However, she also did a report on the planet Earth (the game's Classroom location) for extra credit.
  • Blue is her favorite color, being the reason Neptune is her favourite planet.
  • In "Gets Lost in Space", her eyes appear blue in a close up. This is carried over into the new series.
  • She's a fan of magic.
  • In "Janet's Mystery Gene" she's revealed to be lactose intolerant.
  • She seems to be an antagonist, because of her personality.
  • The first coin flip Carlos ever lost was to Janet.
  • Janet is mentioned in "Out of This World" and "Goes Cellular". In the latter episode, her cousin Arnold blamed her as one of the possibilities on how his skin became orange.
  • Janet has always stayed in normal size. However, in the episode "Butterfly and the Bog Beast", the class attempted to shrink her, but only for the plan to backfire.
  • She is by far the only female student in the original TV series whose human body was explored by Ms. Frizzle's class. It was inside her nose in "Makes a Stink".


* Debut | ** Briefly | --- Formerly

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