Toy Story Land Easter Eggs

Summer is almost over and for Disney fans, it’s been an eventful theme park season. While California has been caught up in the pageantry of Pixar Pier’s opening at Disneyland Resort, Florida has been having an “Incredible Summer” at Walt Disney World. The bigger ongoing gala at Disney World, however, has been the opening summer of Toy Story Land, a brand new area of the park at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Themed to Pixar’s beloved animated films, Toy Story Land is merely the first stage of revitalization for Hollywood Studios, which will also serve as the East Coast outpost for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the new land set to open next year on both sides of the U.S. There’s even a seamlessly connected Star Wars hotel on the way.

As the poet and philosopher Henry David Thoreau once wrote, “The unexamined theme park is not worth visiting.” That may or may not be an extreme bit of paraphrasing, but Toy Story Land is chock-full of Easter eggs; it even adds a few new wrinkles to movie continuity by fleshing out character origins and adding new in-universe elements to the mythos. If you haven’t made it down to Florida yet but you want to plan a trip or just take a vicarious visit to Toy Story Land, then get ready to shrink down to the size of the Green Army Men, because we’re about to enter Andy’s backyard from the Toy Story movies. Here’s your end-of-summer photo tour of Disney World’s Toy Story Land.

At the entrance to Toy Story Land, a 20-foot version of Sheriff Woody Pride welcomes guests into Andy’s backyard world of adventure. To hammer home the new sense of scale for guests, there are massive shoe prints on the ground, a reminder that humans would tower over them like giants if there were any around. (There aren’t, which emboldens the toys to come to life as all toys do when no one’s looking).

Strung up through Andy’s backyard is a canopy of Christmas lights that guests pass under on their way to attractions. Toy Story Land’s three Fastpass rides are Slinky Dog Dash, Alien Swirling Saucers, and the newly repurposed Toy Story Mania.

Slinky Dog Dash

The visual centerpiece of Toy Story Land is the colorful architecture of the Slinky Dog Dash coaster track.

The green dinosaur Rex stands perched atop a Jenga tower in the middle of the track. At the start of the ride, you will pass Rex’s toy box. Keep your eyes peeled for his price sticker, which reveals that Rex was, in fact, bought from Al’s Toy Barn. In Toy Story 2, Barbie led a Hot Wheels tour of this store’s aisles. It’s the place owned by Al McWiggin, the nefarious toy collector voiced by Wayne Knight who kidnapped Woody from a garage sale.

On a rescue mission to free Woody, Rex retrieved a strategy guide from Al’s Toy Barn for the “Buzz Lightyear: Attack on Zurg” video game. However, it’s a new bit of information that Rex was actually bought from the same store. The sticker shows that he was sold for $19.95—the same year the original Toy Story movie changed the game for feature-length animated films.

Jessie the Yodeling Cowgirl is busy stringing more Christmas lights up over the coaster track. You’ll see the Slinky Dog Dash ride vehicle whooshing past her from time to time. The backstory for the track is that it’s a “Mega Coaster Play Kit” that Andy customized. Slinky Dog was not part of the kit but rather part of Andy’s elaborate customization—which is detailed in a wall of crudely drawn crayon schematics inside the ride.

 

Of note on the ride’s stand-by entrance sign is the name on back, showing that it is the collar tag from Andy’s pet dachshund, Buster. The Elm Street address below his name (not pictured) situates the ride within the Toy Story 2 time frame since that’s when Andy lived on Elm Street.

 

After you’ve boarded Slinky Dog’s elongated body and taken it for a spin on the coaster track, you’ll be treated to the crooning of Wheezy the Penguin. Wheezy’s Sinatra-esque rendition of “You’ve Got a Friend in Me” comes at the end of the ride.

As it turns out, Wheezy was bought from Al’s Toy Barn, too. This bit of backstory may explain why Wheezy used to always, well, wheeze, since Al would be just the type to sell a repackaged toy with a defective squeaker. Eagle-eyed guests riding Slinky Dog Dash may notice that Wheezy’s head is drawing shade from a book with the title Partly Cloudy. This is an homage to the Pixar short film of the same name.

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