Post by Hannah Heath
As some of you may be aware, Disney’s California Adventure recently replaced their beloved Tower of Terror, an beloved accelerated drop tower ride.
As a die hard Tower of Terror fan, I was pretty annoyed with this at first. Why would you replaced Terror? What is wrong with you, Disney? I trusted you.
Skip through my tantrum to the point in time when I learned it was being replaced with a Guardians of the Galaxy drop tower. Yup. Faith in Disney restored.
After way too many days of waiting, this new ride, called Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT (though, let’s be honest: People will never say that. It’s just called Guardians), become open to public on March 26th.
Like a true fan (or possibly an incredibly brainwashed person), I went down today (May 31st) to see if this ride lived up to the hype.
The short answer? It absolutely does.
I got there 30 minutes into Magic Hour and jumped straight in line for the Guardians fastpass. 45 minutes later I had my ticket window: 12:25 to 1:25.
I thought, “Hey, maybe I can just go wait in the regular line.” But the line, which had only been open for 20 minutes, was 2 hours long. So I grinned at the poor suckers waiting there as I headed over to check out the Hero of Summers area (totally worth the look).
Also spent some time admiring the exterior of the ride. It’s beyond cool:
It wasn’t sunny when I was there, but I’m pretty sure this building will sparkle in the sunlight. Glorious.
Finally, it was time to get in line. The fastpass line only took 20 minutes, which, as absurd as this is going to sound, made me a bit sad. Why? Because the inside of the building was AMAZING. Seriously. It was like I’d died and gone to nerd heaven.
The two people standing in front of me apparently had never seen the movies and thus didn’t seem to share my enlightenment. I overheard this conversation:
Girl 1: “Do you understand any of this?”
Girl 2: “Nope. I don’t know what any of this is. What’s the raccoon’s name, again?”
I almost tapped her on the shoulder and asked “What’s a raccoon?” but didn’t. Now I’m really wishing I had.
Anyway. All that to say: This ride is geared towards massive nerds….Which isn’t to say that non-nerds still can’t enjoy it. It’s epic either way.
On with the review.
If you don’t want spoilers for this ride, scroll down until it says end spoilers. Got it? I’m only saying it once. Okay:
You walk in and the first thing you see is a giant golden statue of the Collector. It’s pretty dang awesome. So shiny…Tamatoa would have been jealous. Unfortunately, the line moved so fast that I couldn’t snap a picture.
The main inside area looks like it’s right out of the Collector scene in the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie. There were glass boxes displaying tons of Marvel easter eggs (and several non-Marvel, Disney easter eggs). The pictures turned out horribly because of the lighting (totally the lighting. Nothing to do with my pathetic camera skills), but I’ll let you see it anyway:
These two turned out okay. Leave a comment below and try to identify each piece!
Inside the briefing room, a video pops on of the Collector, explaining his beautiful collection. An animatronic Rocket interrupts a few seconds in, mocking the Collector and then explaining his “mission.” He’s going to get us into where the rest of the Guardians are. He can’t go in himself because it requires a hand-scan, something his claws make impossible for him to do personally. He proceeds to tell us to raise our hands so that he can scan them and give us access.
Everybody raises their hands, because yeah, why wouldn’t you raise your hands when an animatronic raccoon/trash panda/ain’t-no-thing-like-him-‘cept-him tells you to? I mean, he was pretty life-like. You half expected him to jump down and rail at you if you didn’t raise your hands.
Fast-forward to getting into the actual drop tower. We see Rocket’s shadow as he rips apart wires and plugs in various cords. Then the music starts blasting: “Hit me with your best shot.” We’re launched upwards and downwards, various doors flying open to show different scenes: Star-Lord and Gamora fighting off guards, baby Groot dancing happily as a prison war takes place in the background, Drax taking out an abilisk and yelling “you’re welcome!”
The ride ends by showing the Guardians (plus Mantis and Cosmo) reunited and ready to get back to their Galaxy-guarding. Which I’m hoping means Cosmo will be an official Guardian in vol 3….?
The entire experience – from the line to the actual ride – is ridiculously fun. Rocket is by far the highlight of the ride. The actual up-and-down part is not only thrilling, but hilarious. You’re trying to watch the scenes, take in the music, and the anticipate drops. This results in people trying to point out: “Look, it’s baby Groot!” but being cut-off mid-sentence by a large drop. Awesome.
This ride gets a Mint rating, hands down. Exciting, funny, and incredibly nerdy. It’s everything I was hoping for and more.
Have you been on this ride yet? If not, when do you plan to? Leave comments below with your thoughts!
Author of the YA Christian dystopian "Skies of Dripping Gold," I'm a voracious bookworm and avid writer. I wince every time I hear the phrase "I don't like to read" and often wish someone would invent candles that smell like hardcovers. When I'm not being nerdy or fighting Lyme disease, I'm off seeking representation for my YA Christian Fantasy novel, The Stump of the Terebinth Tree. My writing tips blog full of sarcasm and geekiness can be found here: http://hannahheath-writer.blogspot.com