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Since I was a kid, the improvements to EPCOT have been drastic. Think about it from a child’s perspective (or anyone under the age of 21, for that matter); what was there to do in EPCOT as recently as the 1990s? Not a whole lot. The Disney Imagineers or whoever the hell obviously figured this out, because they went to work: they added Test Track, Mission Space and they imported Soarin’ from California Adventure, as well as adding character meeting places, Turtle Talk with Crush, and that Nemo thingy that used to be educational. However, they still have that one farming thingy where they’re like, “See those fish we’re farming? You can eat some of their brethren later!” That always rubbed me the wrong way.
But if you wander around EPCOT in it’s entirety (forcing you to say things like, “Every Person Comes Out Tired”), you’ll notice one glaring omission: no roller coaster. Which brings me to the Maelstrom, a Viking inspired log flume ride in Norway at World Show Case. If you would argue that the Maelstrom counts as a roller coaster, I’m inclined to disagree because it’s boring as hell.
But I’m not anti-Maelstrom; in fact, Disney owns a property that could easily lend itself to not only making the Maelstrom more exciting, but turning it into a destination attraction – after a significant upgrade to the ride, of course. I call this new ride The Mighty Thor!
Yeah, Thor. Disney owns Marvel, and they have a Viking themed log flume ride in one of their parks; it’s a no brainer, right? Instead of traveling the Nordic Seas, let’s re-imagine it as the Rainbow Bridge.
As far as I know, the Rainbow Bridge did not inspire the Care Bears or Rainbow Bright, because frankly, didn’t they already live in paradise?
I would totally like to see an animatronic Chris Hemsworth taking me on a voyage to Valhalla or Asgard or where ever the hell the Rainbow Bridge dumps you off. The rest of the ride could effectively be a tour of the Norse Gods… think “It’s a Small World” meets “Pirates of the Caribbean,” except without the prostitutes.
That last drop could be the voyage back the Midgard – that’s earth to you non-dorks. Then Thor could welcome us back and let us know that he pledges to protect mortals, yada yada yada, and we’re into the gift shop to purchase plastic versions of Thor’s hammer and helmet. This would be a good spot for a replica of Thor’s hammer to be welded to a table with that inscription, “Whoever holds this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of Thor.” Note: the only person to ever lift Thor’s hammer was Steve Rogers, aka Captain America.
Now you’ve got a theme park! Beer from all over the world (that suspiciously tastes a lot like Coors), Gary Sinese at Mission Space and Thor in Holland – that would be some combination. You’ve got your orders, EPCOT – now make it happen!