'iCarly': How the Reboot Explains Where Sam Is

The latest 2000s show to get a streaming service reboot is iCarly, but the new version is missing a key character—Sam Puckett, the former best friend of Carly, who was played by Jennette McCurdy.

In reality, McCurdy turned down the chance to appear in the Paramount+ reboot because she quit acting a few years ago. In the world of the show, however, a more bizarre explanation is given for Sam's absence.

How the iCarly reboot explains where Sam is

The Sam question is answered about 20 minutes into the first episode, "iStart Over," which is streaming now on Paramount+.

Carly (Miranda Cosgrove) and Freddie (Nathan Kress) are discussing her plan to relaunch her video channel in order to make her ex-boyfriend jealous. Carly says she wishes Sam were there so they could work on it together.

jennette mccurdy on icarly
Jennette McCurdy's character is absent from the 'iCarly' reboot. Getty

"I just want to make things again," Carly says, to which Freddie replies: "You don't need a partner to do that."

"Yeah," Carly adds. "I don't need a partner, I need Sam."

She then reveals where her best friend is: "She's off following her bliss with that biker gang."

Freddie mentions that the gang is called the Obliterators, before adding: "Hope she's OK."

Carly replies: "It's Sam. I hope they're OK … I just wish she was here so we could do iCarly again."

The biker gang might not even be the weirdest explanation given for a missing character in recent months. In Peacock's Saved By the Bell reboot, viewers were told that Screech was unable to attend a reunion because he was with his robot friend on the International Space Station. The actor who played Screech, Dustin Diamond, died of lung cancer a few months after the revival aired.

McCurdy has not acted since a 2018 short film called The First Lady—apart from in her own one-woman show, I'm Glad My Mom Died.

On her podcast Empty Inside, she said of quitting acting: "I resent my career in a lot of ways. I feel so unfulfilled by the roles that I played and felt like it was the most just cheesy, embarrassing … I imagine there's a very different experience to be had with acting if you're proud of your roles.

"I quit a few years ago because I initially didn't want to do it," McCurdy added. "My family didn't have a lot of money, and this was the way out, which I actually think was helpful in driving me to some degree of success.

"With [my mother's] death kind of died a lot of her ideas for my life, and that was its own journey, and a difficult one for sure."

The iCarly reboot Episodes 1 to 3 are streaming now on Paramount+.