I love using my imagination to "complete" the story on many theme park attractions. Why is this ride here? Where does it fit in the canon of the franchise it represents? What's the backstory? And what's the future hold for these characters, after I exit?
With their emphasis on narrative over thrills, Disney theme park attractions especially have elicited this sort of consideration from their fans. You give us a little bit of story, and our imaginations will take it the rest of the way. One popular term for this is "headcanon," and that's the topic of my Orange County Register column this week.
What's your favorite headcanon for Disney theme park attractions? Or for attractions from Universal and other parks, as they dive deeper into immersive narrative in their parks?
Stories that answer every question, tie every loose thread, and resolve every conflict, frankly, can bore me. As much as I love resolution in a story, it's nice to have something to think about — and debate with other fans — too. Was Snape ultimately a good guy? Why is the Pirates' treasure cursed? Why is Taneleer Tivan's collection in Disney California Adventure?
Reading or hearing other fans' headcanon often inspires me to think about stories I thought I knew in different ways. And that, ultimately, just makes me more of a fan.
I want to make clear here that we're talking headcanon and not urban legends. The difference? Headcanon exists in the world of fiction, while urban legends are about things that are supposedly real (Walt frozen under the castle, emu instead of turkey legs, etc.)
So what's your favorite, or most twisted and thought-provoking, headcanon from the stories we see in theme parks? (One of my favorites: From Snow White's perspective, the apple worked. Think about it from her perspective....)
Read Robert's column:Tweet
This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.