A Divisive Ride Trend Has Been Taking Over Disney World

Okay, hold up Disney. We’ve gotta talk!

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

So I don’t know if you’ve realized this or not, but there’s been this whole “re-theming” trend that’s been sweeping through the parks over the last few years, which has (understandably) gotten quite a lot of reaction from Disney fans. The point is that this re-theming trend is getting kind of divisive, and with the most recent ride to receive a makeover set to officially open later this month, we’re wondering if this is a trend that’s going to keep on keeping on. Let’s see if we can get to the bottom of it all!

As we said, Disney has definitely been on a re-theming spree over the last few years that has gotten a lot of people, shall we say “talking”, basically sharing their honest feelings.  And with the newest re-theme project, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure in Magic Kingdom, about to officially open up later this month, we’re wondering if this is the new normal. Are none of our childhood rides safe? Let’s talk about it.

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

First off, do you remember Maelstrom in EPCOT? If you recall, it was that epic Viking boat ride through Norway. It got a MAJOR makeover and became Frozen Ever After.


At first, people were all like, “Why mess with a classic?” But let’s be real, Frozen Ever After has been a huge hit. Have you noticed that those lines are STILL among the longest at Disney World? Insane!

Frozen Ever After

Overall, it’s turned out to be a crowd-pleaser and feels like a win for Disney, even if the OG Maelstrom fans are still feeling a bit salty.

Now, the Tiana’s Bayou Adventure situation is a whole different beast. I love Princess and the Frog, but for many people, Splash Mountain was a classic, and let’s be honest, the internet kind of went into a meltdown when the news dropped that they were going to have to say goodbye to Br’er Rabbit and the crew.

Br’er Rabbit

Obviously the ride hasn’t officially opened yet, so the jury is still out on how it’ll all pan out for Disney. Some are super stoked about the new storyline and fresh vibes and others are not so enthused about the change. The big question is will it be as successful as Frozen Ever After, or will it flop? In the meantime, the re-theming doesn’t stop there. We’ve got other projects like Country Bear Jamboree and Test Track to talk about. First, let’s talk about our bears.

“Bear” with us

As you know, the Country Bear Jamboree is getting a fresh coat of paint and coming back with a new name and a new show — the Country Bear Musical Jamboree!

Country Bear Jamboree opening date

We’re going to experience the new show next month on July 17th!

OPENING DATE Announced for NEW Country Bear Jamboree Show at Magic Kingdom!

Then there’s Test Track, which is gearing up for a MASSIVE retooling.


This one looks to have us drive through some kind of forest, and the ride vehicles look to be referencing those seen in World of Motion when the ride opened back in 1982.


We’re still waiting to know more details about it and when it’ll open back up.

Why We’re Worried About the Major Test Track Ride CHANGES in Disney World

The “fun” doesn’t stop there as Disney has shared that there will be a re-theme of “It’s Tough to Be a Bug” in Animal Kingdom to a Zootopia theme.


There are sure to be all kinds of thoughts and reactions to having to say goodbye to Flik and his bug friends.

NEWS: ‘Zootopia’ Is Coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom

All in all, we know Disney has to continue to innovate to stay relevant, so we’re just hoping that Disney can be strategic with these re-themes. We’re fans of giving classics a refresh to be sure, but we’d love to see Disney consider new locations for new properties. That way they have their own space to shine. It’s like a win-win for everyone.

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

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6 Replies to “A Divisive Ride Trend Has Been Taking Over Disney World”

  1. I’m just going to leave these two quotes from Walt right here…

    1. “The park means a lot to me in that it’s something that will never be finished. Something that I can keep developing, keep plussing and adding to—it’s alive. It will be a live, breathing thing that will need changes.”

    2. Times and conditions change so rapidly that we must keep our aim constantly focused on the future.

    I’m not complaining that “If You Had Wings” is gone, because I’m a grown up.

    If the loss of a ride triggers you so much, you lead a very privileged life indeed.

  2. Rides are periodically updated to remain relevant to children and younger adults. It’s just good business.

    Tarzan’s treehouse used to be the Swiss Family Robinson treehouse, which was based on the largely forgotten live-action film from 1960. The Finding Nemo submarine ride used to be 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, another live-action film from 1954.

    Splash Mountain was based on Song of the South, released in 1946. This movie is racially insensitive and has been unavailable for viewing for decades, so most people under age 30 have never seen it.

    Rides are often retooled to remove outdated, offensive content. This was done for The Country Bear Jamboree, but also for Jungle Cruise and Pirates of the Caribbean.

  3. All of this to ignore the fact that they needed to expand to a fifth park years ago. Iger/Chapek/Iger has been the least productive leadership in years. The current parks are overcrowded, but instead of offering additional space and venue for everyone to enjoy, Iger and his puppet, Chapek held on to the draconian reservation system that every other park dumped ASAP once COVID was debunked and installed a pay wall to keep those who just want to pay the already exorbitant price of admission from accessing the attractions. Iger then further instilled this by making one of the most discriminatory disability access programs in the nation to ensure that as many people as possible have to pay to play. That’s not even getting into the politics, grooming, and destruction of classic attractions. Disney just isn’t Disney anymore, and more and more people are seeing that everyday. Once Epic Universe opens at Universal, I think you are going to see Disney fading from the top spot as Iger has proven that he just doesn’t have what it takes to be competitive in the industry. All these changes and the new clinging to IP approach are red flags for guests and investors, but too many are stuck in this “don’t be negative” mindset to see that giving honest feedback and criticism might just be what saves Disney completely.

  4. I couldn’t agree more about new spaces for new rides! That way, the classic rides (which are nostalgic favorites for so many guests) may remain. PLUS, more rides means more opportunities to disperse crowds better.

  5. You can take the characters out of the mountain…but that’s that. It’s no bayou, it’s a mountain. Long live splash mountain, may its memory be a testament to James Baskin, Uncle Remus, whom was the first African American male winner of an Academy Award for his role. Hmm, maybe Disney should have remembered that!

    1. I, for one, look forward to sharing the mountains and waterfalls of my native South Louisiana with the world.