Disney Ride to Continue Promoting Global Peace, Obesity

Richard Lawson · 03/31/08 02:13PM

First "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride" and now "It's a Small World." The beloved and hysterically dated Disney ride, featured at both the charming old Disneyland and the horrifying specter of American doom that is Disney World, that takes you on a wee boat trip through the countries of the world, from darkest Africa through ching-chongiest Asia, isn't disappearing like "Wild Ride," but it's gonna change. Plans are afoot for an update, to both include well-known Disney characters and to accommodate the increasing waistlines of parkgoers. The family of Mary Blair, the ride's designer, along with the many people who are strangely devoted to the automated wonder, is up in arms, claiming that the inclusion of popular Disney folk will cheapen the ride's twee spirit of separate-but-equal internationalism. Atlantic blogger Virginia Postrel, while not mentioning the weight issue, believes that the ride is due for a makeover, because in this increasingly globalized society, the isolationism of its message is, at best, irrelevant.