Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Meet Merida at the Magic Kingdom

Last weekend was the first chance to meet Merida, the new heroine from Brave (opens in theaters in late June). Although the movie isn't here yet, the character is, and the lines are low for now!

Merida's home is in the vaguely European "block garden" that was home until recently of Rapunzel. While Rapunzel's lines were long, Merida's are less so for the moment. That may change once the movie comes out. Apparently the arena holds about 50 people at a time.

The core of the experience, unlike Rapunzel, is just a meet and greet. There is no central "show" to it; you just get in line. That said, kids can either color a Merida sheet of paper, or partake in the archery practice (which is obviously much more dynamic). A guide will show you how to hold the bow, how to aim, and then you let your arrow fly! The arrowhead is a big piece of foam, though, and there are safety nets around.

Once you meet Merida, you see bears popping out from behind her; this will all make more sense after the movie comes out. The bears are not animatronic; they are puppets, controlled by a puppeteer, and they react to conversations. Try it!

Around the corner, the merchandise cart is crammed full of gear for sale themed to this new princess:

Kevin Yee is the author of numerous independent Disney books, including the popular Walt Disney World Earbook series and Walt Disney World Hidden History.