Disneyland takes Inside Out fans on an Emotional Whirlwind

June 28, 2019, 10:43 AM · One year after its opening at Disney California Adventure, Pixar Pier is now (finally!) complete. This morning, the park officially dedicated the land's "newest" ride, Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind.

If this spinner ride looks familiar, that's because you might have ridden it in its previous life as Flik's Flyers over in the now-demolished A Bug's Land. Disney has completely redecorated the ride as "memory orbs" from the Disney/Pixar film Inside Out, creating a colorful and kinetic display to anchor Pixar Pier's western end.

Here's the off-ride and on-ride POV from the ride:

Others have used this simile, but programming a theme park is like cooking an omelet. You've got to get the right mix of ingredients to make some tasty. Emotional Whirlwind gives California Adventure a solid kiddie ride to replace those it lost when it closed A Bug's Land. It takes what (I think) was the best ride in that land and improves it with superior decoration, designed to appeal visually to little kids... and anyone else who appreciates a colorful, ostentatious display.

For many children, a love of theme parks begins with the first attraction that lifts them over the legs of the crowd and lets them see the world above. Flik's Flyers did that... but failed to offer much to look at in the scaled-down universe of A Bug's Land. Emotional Whirlwind instead offers superior views of Pixar Pier and everything around it, creating a junior version of the Silly Symphony Swings next door. And the big, colorful memory orbs (which light up at night) offer a much more enticing overhead view than the rather dreary, nut-like leaf "balloons" on Flik's.

Of course, Inside Out provides much more thematic and narrative material for a world-class theme park attraction than a spinner ride delivers. But there's nothing keeping Disney from coming back to this franchise should it find the right opportunity in its parks.

But if you want, go ahead and get angry with this ride. Or frustrated. Or happy that there's finally something running in the long-empty space once occupied by the Maliboomer. Or thrilled for the kids that will love this spin in the air. Feel what you want. That's the nature of an Emotional Whirlwind, after all.

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Replies (1)

June 28, 2019 at 2:00 PM

If anything, these kind of rides bring a ton of kinetic energy to an area on a modest plot of land.

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