“Step right up and come on in, here’s where the fun begins! There’s so much to do, getting ready just for you. Everybody’s busy bringing you a !”
If you’re of a certain age, those words take you back to your childhood, excitedly setting down in front of your television set for the best cartoons around – Adventures of the Gummi Bears, DuckTales, Chip ‘n Dale: , TaleSpin, , , Gargoyles, and the many other that made up the created-for-syndication, two hour block of animated television .
Running throughout much of the 90s, the was responsible – along with the “Disney Renaissance” of animated classics starting with 1989’s The Little Mermaid – for inculcating an entire generation of Disney fans. It’s no surprise, then, that now that this same generation is old enough to have kids (and disposable income) of their own, the has become a popular source of nostalgic content including the recent DuckTales reboot and Chip ‘n Dale: feature film on Disney+.
However, the has also appeared beyond the small screen, and we’re not just talking about DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp. The beloved programming block, and its individual Disney Parks on more than one occasion. and characters, has made its way into the
The at Mickey’s Birthdayland
When Mickey’s Birthdayland opened in the in 1988, it brought with it not just Mickey, Minnie, and their closest friends but also the entirety of DuckTales‘ Duckburg in the form of cardboard cutout buildings. In Mickey’s Birthdayland, many of the ‘s characters would appear, and it was there that the first took center stage at the Disney Parks.
Mickey’s Magical TV World – which was later changed to Mickey’s Starland Show when the land itself underwent a revision to become Mickey’s Starland – featured alongside the stars of the . Each year the show would get an update to reflect that year’s lineup of cartoons, and its run lasted until 1996 when Mickey’s Starland was closed and rethemed as Mickey’s Toontown Fair.
Much shorter-lived than its east coast sibling, Disneyland’s edition of the characters to its Park was called . The temporary “land” was essentially an overlay of the walkway between the Storybook Land Canal Boats and Videopolis (the Disneyland dance club that was itself a product of the 80s, long gone and now the site of the Fantasyland Theatre).
Several pop-up spots along the Avenue provided locales for Guests to get stamps on a special souvenir map, and in between those spots, the characters from the roamed around for pictures and autographs. In addition, several attractions were temporarily rethemed, including:
- The Train Depot (a retheming of the Fantasyland stop on the Disneyland Railroad)
- The Motorboat Cruise to (retheming the Motorboat Cruise attraction to The Adventures of the Gummi Bears)
- The Raceway (retheming the Autopia to Chip ‘n Dale: )
What’s more, Guests could enjoy special treats like frozen Gummi Berry Juice bars while watching a special show called Plane Crazy on the Videopolis Stage. The fast-paced production featured the stars of the teaming up to recover a stolen X-22 spy plane (because even in 1991, it was still the 80s) from villains and Fat Cat.
Disneyland After Dark: 90s Nite
Fast forward from the 90s to 2019, and the kids who loved Mickey’s Magical TV World and were now nostalgic adults. Bolstered by the critical success of the new DuckTales reboot, the realized that the was a viable property once again.
That’s why March 17, 2019, saw a special Disneyland After Dark event called 90s Nite, which featured beloved characters from the showing up for photo opportunities, a re-imagined , and (of course) plenty of themed food, drinks, and merchandise.
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The capstone to this event, though, was the 90s-themed fireworks show, which opened with the theme song before running through other favorite themes from individual , culminating in “I2I” (or “Eye to Eye”) from 1995’s A Goofy Movie (which, though not a part of the itself, was a continuation of the programming block’s show starring, Goofy as a single father to son Max).
The , Today
Even today, some aspects of the Disney Afternoon are still to be found at the Disney Parks.
For example, Donald’s Dino-Bash! at Animal Kingdom features flotillas that include DuckTales’ and Launchpad McQuack. What’s more, a new EPCOT attraction will feature the entire cast of DuckTales as part of a World Showcase scavenger hunt called DuckTales World Showcase Adventure.
Now, both of these attractions are based on the DuckTales reboot, but hopefully, if they remain popular, it will auger good news for fans of the that want to see it represented even more at the Disney Parks.