Follow TV Tropes


Series / Bunk'd

Go To
The cast of Season 1-2, left to Right: Xander, Lou, Emma, Zuri, and Hazel. Not pictured: Ravi.

Bunk'd is a live-action sitcom that premiered on Disney Channel during the summer of 2015. It is a spin-off of the wildly popular series Jessie starring three of the characters on that show - Emma Ross (Peyton R. List), Ravi Ross (Karan Brar), and Zuri Ross (Skai Jackson).

In this show, the Ross kids (minus Luke, as his actor Cameron Boyce stars in Gamer's Guide to Pretty Much Everything, but still pops in every now and then with the In Universe explanation that he is attending summer school while the others are at camp) are forced by their parents to attend Camp Kikiwakka in Maine for the summer, the same camp where their parents met as counselors. While there, they will learn valuable life skills and make new friends outside of their posh Manhattan comfort zone.

The series premiered on July 31, 2015 after the Descendants DCOM and about a few months before the finale of its parent series Jessie, meaning that the two shows have actually run concurrently even though Bunk'd is supposed to take place after Jessie. As such the first half season of Bunk'd is careful not to reveal any potential Jessie spoilers.


Supposedly the series looked to have ended in its third season as Skai Jackson seemed to confirm on social media. However on November 2018, the season was picked up for a fourth season. However Skai meant that she wasn't returning to the series. It was likewise revealed that Peyton and Karan likewise had jumped ship as well, leaving the show with an entirely new cast come the next season. So in a way, with the departure of the entire original cast (along with Cameron Boyce's untimely death in July of 2019), it was truly the end of the line for the Jessie series.

On February 24, 2020, the show was renewed for a 5th season, being the first live action Disney Channel show to reach that milestone.


Tropes seen in Bunk'd:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Hazel is this for Xander.
  • Aborted Arc: The ending of the episode “Friending With The Enemy” has Tiffany and Ravi witnessing the Kikiwaka monster and get proof of such in the next episode, “Waka, Waka, Waka!”, yet Tiffany left the camera in selfie mode and they lost the proof. After that episode, the Kikiwaka was never seen nor mentioned again, and Tiffany and Ravi have never resumed their quest. However, the Kikiwaka and her son do appear in the season 3 finale.
  • Absentee Actor:
    • Xander was absent for two episodes in Season 1 and three episodes in Season 2.
    • Jorge was absent for four episodes in Season 1 and two episodes in Season 2.
    • Tiffany was absent for four episodes in Seasons 1 and 2.
    • Ravi was absent for one episode in Season 2.
  • All Just a Dream: The whole plot of "Fog'd In" is revealed in the final scene to be a story told by Jorge.
    • The plot of Destiny, Finn, and Matteo being transported into a action board game is revealed to be a dream Destiny is having.
  • Alpha Bitch: Hazel, who is The Dragon to her aunt, seems to fit this trope.
  • Animation Bump: A rare live-action version, specifically of the intro variety. The intro is filmed in a very slick, very high-quality way with high quality (at least for television) CGI and in single-camera format in contrast to the actual show's tightly budgeted multi-camera setup.
  • Artistic License – Physics: In "Town and Clown Relations", as part of a prank war, Finn pretends to levitate a box with his mind, but later reveals there was a drone in the box. However, a drone inside on an enclosed box will not be able to cause the box to fly.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: An in-universe version in "Finder’s Keepers, Lou’s a Weeper" with the story Babyface Munson tells. He and two accomplices robbed a bank decades earlier but he was caught while the other two not only escaped, but kept the money and, as Lou stated, became known as the richest people in Mooserump.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Subverted in "We Can't Bear It!". When Lou tearfully takes off with the gang in the bus except Finn, Matteo and Destiny who are lost at the moment, she abruptly stops the bus and realizes she left something behind, leading the audience to think she forgot the kids, only to forget it and go on. Then later on when she mentions Finn's name, that is when she realizes she forgot them.
  • Big Bad: Gladys has this role, as she makes it her purpose to make the Ross Kids' lives miserable because she hates their mom, Christina.
  • Birthday Episode: "Boo Boos and Birthdays" for Tiffany, and surprisingly, Hazel.
  • Book-Ends: Season 3 begins with the Ross kids purchasing the camp and becoming the new bosses. The season ends with them selling the camp to Lou when they get once-in-a-lifetime opportunities from their parents.
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs:
    Gwen: I thought that was a myth, like redheads and electric toothbrushes.
    Destiny: Actually, there are redheads and electric toothbrushes, there's even redheads who use electric toothbrushes.
  • Brick Joke: In the first episode, little Timmy is sent to the entrance of the camp to be picked up by his parents because their check bounced. A few episodes later... he's still there, still waiting to be picked up.
    • He's still waiting there in the Season 2 Halloween episode, where he recruits campers to play a prank on Gladys.
    • And still there when the season 3 campers arrive.
    • He eventually leaves with the Kikiwaka and her son in the season 3 finale.
  • Cassandra Truth: In “Waka, Waka, Waka!”, only Ravi and Tiffany witness the Kikiwaka monster and no one would believe them. When they get footage for proof, it turns out they left the camera in selfie mode the whole time and are humiliated.
  • The Chains of Commanding: A somewhat downplayed version happened in the fourth season premiere. Lou had a problem going from Counselor of the Woodchuck cabin to owner. While she was very competent, it took her a while to actually take over the owner's cabin.
  • Christmas Episode:
    • Season 1 had "Secret Santa"
    • Season 2 had "How the Griff Stole Christmas"
    • Season 4 had "Summer Winter Wonderland"
  • Continuity Nod: In the last episode of season 4, "Party Pooper", Destiny mentions that others campers recently had to be saved from a bouncy house about to go over the waterfall, mentioning it was strangely common, a reference to this happening to her, Finn, and Matteo in the second episode of the previous season, "Let's Bounce!"
  • Criminal Doppelgänger: Invoked in "Yes, Lies and Tower Escape". After Destiny and Gwen accidentally break a window, they blame it on a girl with blue hair and green glasses. Soon, they see a girl matching their description and, knowing Lou wants to kick her out, try to protect her until Lou finally told the girls that the girl is an actress she hired to mess with them.
  • Darker and Edgier: Season 2 has some moments of this. "Camp Kiki-Slasher" and "Fog'd In" had warnings at the beginning, and even "Luke Out Below" and "Queen of Screams" are a little disturbing. In Season 4, "In Your Wildest Screams" takes this a little further.
  • Dark Secret: One of the plots of "A Tale of Two Stackers" revolves around Destiny and Ava discovering Jedediah's Secret Diary and discovering a big secret — Jed quit Kikiwaka in terms of failure and started Camp Champion, which Lou hates. The two struggle to keep the secret from Lou throughout the episode.
  • Description Cut: Nearly subverted in "We Can't Bear It!". When Finn tells Matteo to calm down, and hopes the others realize they're missing, cut to Lou who abruptly stops the bus and realizes just that, only to give up and go on.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The theme song is sung by the actor who plays Xander.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: The Director, Gladys has signs of this.
  • Embarrassing Middle Name: Lou accidentally reveals her middle name is Dorcas.
  • The End... Or Is It?: "In Your Wildest Screams" ends with Cuddles' arm rising out of the ground, implying her power still lives on, probably because the others couldn't get the last part of the ritual correctly.
  • Enemy Mine: In some circumstances, Hazel will help the Ross kids and their friends, but only does so out of self interest.
  • Epic Fail: The entire episode "A Whole Lotta Lobsta" revolves around this.
  • Fish out of Water: The premise in relation to the Ross kids.
  • Five Stages of Grief: Ravi mentions these word per word in the Season 3 finale as Lou begins to get saddened over the Rosses not coming back next summer and having to sell the camp, though he messes up the last three (fear, bargaining and acceptance, when it should be bargaining, depression and acceptance).
  • Friendship Moment: In "Mo-Squito Mo Problems", Noah and Finn bond when Finn tries to cheer him up after learning Noah's parents are divorcing, something Finn's parents did the previous year.
  • Gainax Ending: The ending of "A Whole Lotta Lobsta" has Emma decide to start new food traditions over the next two years which also become a disaster.
  • Gender-Blender Name: In "Cramped Champions", the boys are one the only cabins not to host a Camp Champion camper, so they try to get one by sending out a questionnaire to see who best matches them. They finally pick a Taylor who is perfect for all three, that is until they realize the one question they forgot was to ask male or female.
  • Gender-Equal Ensemble: For the Grizzly and Woodchuck cabins, it was tilted by one girl in the first season, balanced in season two with Griff, tilted again by one girl in season three and balanced again in season four.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Some instances, like in the pilot, Hazel asking Xander to "freak em" and Ravi covering Jorge's eyes should be clue enough of what she meant. Also, Some dialogue between Xander and Emma implies their relationship is much more intimate than we're lead to believe.
    • More of this in the episode "Smells Like Camp Spirit":
      • When there's a pile up on the ground and Emma ends up landing front first on Xander's back (with Lou and Hazel around them), he says: "I've had dreams about this, only I was much happier."
      • Jorge suggests to Tiffany that they take a more hands-on approach to teaching Ravi how to swim: "We need to get physical!" to which she responds: "I don't like you like that!"
      • When the counselors are searching for a 'contraband' phone, Hazel insists on frisking Xander several times: "That's not a pocket, Hazel!"
      • The entire episode where Gladys bans candy is one big reference to drug abusers. Tiffany is very clearly on a drug high the whole time. Except with candy, so it's okay.
    • While this could just be a coincidence, the Weasel campers nickname Lou Reek, getting upset if anyone tries to call them their real name. This is eerily similar to when Ramsay Bolton kidnaps Theon and nicknames him the same thing. Keep in mind the show that this joke seems to be based on, and how different it is from the usual Parental Bonus on a Disney show!
    • It's even in the theme song! Substitute excrements which rhyme with "Kikiwaka".
    "What's that smell? It's on your shoe!"
  • G-Rated Drug: Candy, and later on, Video Games
  • Greater-Scope Villain: As of the eighth episode, the Kikiwaka seems to become the show's more prevalent Big Bad.
  • The Grinch: In season 2's "How the Griff Stole Christmas", Griff causes mayhem and mischief whenever he was tasked with helping to make toys for children for Christmas and was generally acting up. He finally revealed that in juvie, one special Christmas privilege for the kids was an extra visit from family, of which he had none.
    • In season 4's "Summer Winter Wonderland", Destiny came to hate Christmas as her grandfather died after the previous Christmas and she couldn't imagine having another one without him.
  • Halloween Episode: Season 2 had "Camp Kiki-Slasher".
    • Season 4 had "In Your Wildest Screams".
  • Happy Birthday to You!: Sung at Finn's (late) birthday party (really Ava's birthday).
  • History Repeats: This is the case with Emma, Hazel, and Xander. Back when Gladys, Morgan, and Christina were all campers, Gladys had a crush on Morgan but Christina "stole" him from her. Hazel is Gladys' niece, who has an obsessive crush on Xander, a good looking and all around nice guy. Xander, however, has a crush on Emma, who also has a crush on him.
  • Hot Wind: Happens the first time Xander sees Emma. Lampshaded by Lou, standing right behind Emma and annoyed Emma's hair is blowing on her. "Where did that wind come from?"
  • Intergenerational Friendship: Gwen and the senior dancing student Edna bonded over various things such as Edna's time as a forest ranger while Gwen lived in the woods and both enjoying squirrel meat.
  • Ironic Echo Cut: One occurs in "We Can't Bear It!".
    Lou: I can't wait to see our rebuilt cabins!
    (Cuts to the camp where the Ross kids are looking at their still-burnt cabins.)
    Emma: Oh, my gosh. Gladys didn't rebuild our cabins.
  • The Ketchup Test: In "Inn Trouble", after seeing Finn licking the "dirt" off of his arm, Gwen reaches over and puts her finger into the "blood" on his elbow, recognizing it as raspberry jam. Lampshaded by Destiny who asked her what if it had been blood.
  • Kick the Dog: A camper named Timmy is repeatedly shunned whenever he tries to get into the camp and left out. The last time he is seen, he has given up all hope to get in, just as Lou is considering it.
  • Last Episode Theme Reprise: The Season 2 finale ends with Xander and the gang singing the theme song as they leave camp.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall:
    Hazel: You know, Emma, you and Eric kind of look alike.
    Emma and Eric: We do not!
    • Eric is played by Peyton's twin brother Spencer.
  • Line-of-Sight Alias: When Gwen accidentally breaks a window, Destiny blames the accident on a girl with blue hair (blue chair) and green glasses (green grass). Lou actually turns around to check Destiny's line of sight, lampshading the fact she knows exactly what is happening.
  • Maintain the Lie: When Tiffany's mother comes for a visit, Tiffany freaks out as she's been telling her mother she's been attending a camp for the intelligent and gifted. The gang try to keep it up by pretending they're geniuses but it doesn't take long for Tiff's mom to see through that.
    • In Season 4, Destiny and Gwen invent a fictious girl to take the blame for their misdemeanors. Lou isn't fooled for a second and hires a local actress to pretend to be the non-existent girl, just to teach a morality lesson.
  • Meaningful Name: Discussed and subverted by Gwen's brother Jasper in "Lone Wolf". While in the city, he explained he came across three boys named Hunter and was disappointed that none of them was one.
  • My Life Flashed Before My Eyes:
    • Lou experiences this in “Queen of Screams” when Stephanie Queen first appears.
    • Luke experiences this in “Luke out Below” when he, Zuri and Griff are trapped on a mountain.
  • Nice, Mean, and In-Between:
    • The counselors from Season 1-2 has: Xander the nice and laid-back one, Hazel the mean and snobby one, and Lou the in-between and well-behaved one who’s friends with the Rosses.
    • For the new campers from Season 3, we have: Matteo the Nervous Wreck, Destiny the brassy pageant girl, and Finn The Pigpen who stays in-between most of the time.
  • Nightmare Sequence: We get three in "In Your Wildest Screams".
  • No OSHA Compliance: Camp Kikiwaka has so many health code and safety violations it's a wonder the place is still open.
    • This becomes a plot point in season 3's "Take the Cake" where a worker from the city threatens to shut down the camp due to its many, many violations.
  • Off the Grid: Gwen spent her whole life with this lifestyle.
  • Omniglot: Downplayed, but Matteo can speak English, French, Portuguese, as well as Sign Language. As for the first three, his actor is fluent in them.
  • Only Sane Man: As of Season 3, the only characters who know of the Kikiwaka's existence are Ravi, Tiffany, Finn, Destiny and Matteo.
  • Operation: Jealousy: Destiny hatched a platonic version of this plot in "The S'more, The S'merrier" after learning that Matteo invited Finn to Thanksgiving the previous year. To make them jealous, she found two boys that somewhat resembled Finn and Matteo to hang out with. The boys played this game as well and found a girl who looked like Destiny to hang out with. It worked on both sides leading them all to talk out their issues.
  • Our Founder: Jedediah Swearingen, Hazel and Gladys' ancestor. Turns out he's also this for Camp Champion. After so many accidents, casualties and a poltergeist being released in the camp director's cabin, he realized Camp Kikiwaka was a mistake so he faked his death and started anew.
  • Parental Abandonment: Griff's parents abandoned him years earlier, which led him in and out of foster homes, leading him to start to steal food and eventually larger things such as bikes, which got him arrested and placed into a juvenile delinquent facility.
    • Poor Timmy. His parents never picked him up after their check first bounced and they were still missing more than three years later.
  • Parent with New Paramour: While not exactly new, in "My Fairy Lady" Finn is upset that his mother's fiancee is coming to visit. Finn already has had issues with wanting to like him, even though he easily fits with Finn's personality.
    Gwen: I'm just woodsy strong.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Gwen. In one episode after Finn made her upset, she was shown taking her anger out by chopping logs with her hand.
  • Plot Tailored to the Party: Intentionally Defied by Lou in "Serf's Up-Rising". She gave each main character a role for Renaissance Week that was completely opposite who they were. The confident beauty queen Destiny was a chamber maid. Finn, the follower, was made king. Matteo, the scared was made a knight. Gwen, the girl who was reluctant with her reading and writing was made a bard. Noah, someone who was not good with girls was given a romantic role. Ava, the sardonic and sarcastic counselor was made court jester.
  • Pressure Point: Both Gwen and her brother Jasper can basically do the Vulcan nerve pinch to knock out others. Jasper does it to Noah to get him to sleep while Gwen does it to Jasper to prevent him from leaving.
  • Prophetic Fallacy: In "Dreams Come True", it's revealed that whenever Lou has dreams that are as clear as day, they're easy to remember, and they will come true. Sometimes though, the end result seen in said dreams are not what will happen, but rather what Lou subconsciously makes of them. In this episode, Lou's dream was that Emma gets stained with punch, walks on broken glass, runs through the forest dressed as a court jester wearing an argyle sweater being chased by a groaning shadowy figure, and ends with a bright light and Emma disappearing. All of it came to fruition true to Lou's dream, but when the final part came, Emma didn't disappear, and the shadowy figure was the County Services official erroneously thinking Emma was Griff.
    • Lou seems able to predict the overall events to come, but is wrong on the final outcome. Her next dream shows her accurately predict who Zuri's next package is from, as well as the contents and the reason they were sent. However, she incorrectly predicts that Zuri would give her the contents of the package.
  • Put on a Bus:
    • Season 3 drops Xander, Jorge, Tiffany, Gladys, and Hazel, with Gladys being said to have taken the camp's insurance money and run off.
      • Hazel comes back in the fourth season episode "Inn Trouble" where they, in a way, reconcile and are no longer foes.
    • Season 4 drops the Ross kids due to them going their separate ways in the Season 3 finale.
  • Retool: Season 3 features the core four main characters that are left (Ravi, Zuri, Emma, and Lou) becoming owners of Kikiwaka after their parents bought out the camp after Gladys ran off, and features three new kids as main characters.
  • Same Clothes, Different Year: Played Straight. In the flashback scenes of the episode "Luke Out Below," all of Xander, Hazel, and Lou's younger selves are blatantly seen wearing the same type of clothes they would usually wear as their older canon selves.
    • Hazel's younger self in the flashbacks wears her usual, distinct denim or corduroy overall shorts and button-down plaid shirt.
    • Xander's younger self usually wears his usual Camp Kikiwaka uniform shirt and khaki shorts.
    • Lou's younger self also wears her usual plaid button-down shirt and khaki shorts.
    • Even their hairstyles are pretty much the exact same.
  • Scarily Competent Tracker: In the first episode of the fourth season, Gwen tracks down Noah after he tries to leave camp by following his footprints at night. She stated she learned to track animals when she was a baby.
  • Series Fauxnale: The show was originally set to end after the third season with "Up, Up and Away", given that the Rosses are leaving for once-in-a-lifetime opportunities and Camp Kikiwaka is sold to Lou. However, due to extreme popularity, the show was given another season and continues without the Rosses from there.
  • Shared Dream: The events of "Gruel and Unusual Punishment" where Destiny, Finn, and Matteo are transported back to 17th century Moose Rump after inhaling some kind of powder in a box from that time. They are told they just hallucinated what they were seeing, however, the three discover that they may have made changes to history such as allowing for more colors in their dress to making others realize animals may be more than just for food.
  • Shipper on Deck: Lou when it comes to Emma and Xander.
    • Due to jealousy and a misunderstanding, in one episode Emma becomes this to Xander and Lou. They promptly sink that ship (after a glorious Ship Tease wherein the two almost kiss) and emphasize that they are Just Friends.
  • Shouldn't We Be in School Right Now?: Averted as this series is supposed to take place during summer vacation, but the summer camp setting ends up taking the place of a High School / Boarding School anyway. It is further established that each season takes place during another summer.
    • Could be somewhat played straight for a summer camp. Most overnight camps are very regimented with the campers doing specific activities at specific times with only certain times of free play. However, most of the time both the campers and counselors are just messing around.
  • Shout-Out: Zuri getting Tiffany to play volleyball better involves inciting rage, also done by Maddie to motivate London to win the volleyball tournament.
    This is not the phone you're looking for. Go about your business. Move along.
  • Shown Their Work: Matteo mentions a previous time the weather in Maine was very cold in the Summertime was in 1816. This event actually happened in the "Year of No Summer", which Matteo even referred to it as. There was even June snow in Maine, where the series takes place.
  • Smelly Skunk: "Camp Stinky Waka" where the Grizzly cabin hunts Big Stinky, the camp's skunk nemesis.
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: Gwen showed she "dabbled" in cricket language in "Yes, Lies and Tower Escape" after telling crickets to get back into a jar by chirping at them.
  • Spin-Off: Of Jessie
  • Special Guest: Cameron Boyce makes his appearance as Luke in "Luke's Back", and appears again in "Luke Out Below".
  • Stating the Simple Solution: The third season premiere has the gang rocked to find the camp still burned down and Gladys fleeing with the insurance money. They're sadly talking on how it will be shut down when Mateo says to Emma "Too bad you guys don't have a rich friend who can buy the place." The very next scene is Emma announcing her mother just bought the entire camp and gave it to her children to run.
  • Stepford Smiler: When Destiny is in her Pageant Mode, she becomes this, especially seen in "Toilets and Tiaras". She showed that she can be super polite and smiling while also being ruthless toward her competition.
  • Sure, Let's Go with That:
    • When Lou confiscates Tiffany's mobile phone during a conversation with her mother, the sound of loud rapid talking in Chinese can be heard. Lou asks if what she's hearing is affectionate and Tiffany responds with the appropriate line. Most likely, it was really angry yelling at Lou for interrupting the phone call.
    Lou: So, Emma, what'd you think of your gift?
    Emma: I'm speechless.
    Lou: Because you loved it so much?
    Emma: Yeah, let's go with that.
  • Take That!: In a written interview, Cameron Boyce pokes fun at Luke's explained absence from Bunk'd (see Written In Absence in YMMV) with, "and by the way, it's spelled s-u-m-m-e-r s-c-h-o-o-l".
    • In "A Tale of Two Stackers", as seen below in Tempting Fate, Gwen has to be honest with Noah about why she hates Star Battles (an Expy of Star Wars), she lists many of the issues from Star Wars, including how the Luke/Leah relationship was beginning to be potentially romantic. Made even funnier as Creator/Disney owns both.
  • Tempting Fate: After Gwen watches Noah's favorite movie and finds it horribly awful
    Gwen: The only good thing about that movie is that it's over and I'll never have to watch it again.
    Ava smirks and snickers.
    Gwen: Why are you laughing?
    Noah: After we take a break, let's watch the next 8 movies.
    Ava: That's why.
  • Toilet Humour: The Matteo/Gwen plot in "Party Pooper" is all about this. Gwen leaves their picnic at night (he wanted to show her his telescope) after he makes a comment that Gwen thinks is him reacting to her just farting while Matteo thinks she left because she thought the chocolate he accidentally sat on was something else.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Gwen, the outdoors girl who was raised to be independent is the tomboy to Destiny's pageant contestant girly girl.
  • Trash the Set: At the end of season two, the Woodchuck and Grizzly cabins were burned to the ground.
  • Treasure Map: The episode "Inn Trouble" had Hazel coming back with what Lou and Gwen believed was a map to a treasure. However, the map was actually to a time capsule from hers and Lou's first year at the camp.
  • Truncated Theme Tune: The theme song was shortened to the final chorus in the third season onwards.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Gwen got really angry with Matteo in "Mo-Squito Mo Problems" for turning her mosquito repellent cream into a spray and then taking all the credit for it.
  • Written-In Absence:
    • In the first episode, Luke's absence is explained by having him need to attend summer school instead of camp (allowing Cameron Boyce to star in Gamer's Guide to Pretty Much Everything). Since Season 2 premiered, and takes place during the next summer, and Luke actually has been doing well in Summer School during the first season, there's no real explanation as to why he isn't with his siblings this time around. Of course, he returns every once in a while, visiting once in Season 1, and again in Season 2.
    • Due to the Ross children leaving to do their dream jobs in the Season 3 finale, they won't be returning in Season 4 and Lou takes over as the boss when she buys the camp from them.
  • You Have to Believe Me!: Ravi and Tiffany's problem for "Waka, Waka, Waka!".

Video Example(s):


Emma falls in mud.

While Emma is doing a tightrope over a mud pit, Hazel throws a dodgeball at her, causing Emma to lose her balance and fall face first into the mud.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (1 votes)

Example of:

Main / CoveredInMud

Media sources:

Main / CoveredInMud