Walt Disney World (FL)

Top Ten Magic Kingdom Attraction Earworms

Share This!

An earworm is a snippet of sound that gets stuck in your head, rolling over and over (and over and over and over …) as if on constant replay. Typically this refers to a musical phrase that repeats in your head ad infinitum. I’m probably a weirdo (well, I’m definitely a weirdo, but this may be just a minor factor) because this sometimes happens to me with phrases or spoken words, not just melodies or lyrics as is normally the case. I hear a specific sentence and it can roll around in my head for hours, or days, or more.

Buzz has a little know earworm superpower.
Buzz has a little know earworm superpower.

For me, this persistent semi-conscious auditory loop is most often triggered by a trip to Walt Disney World. Maybe there’s a sense memory factor, maybe it’s a latent childhood tic, or maybe it’s just that the notes and phrases are repeated so often during the attractions that they have become the background music of my mind. In any event, here is a list of the top ten Magic Kingdom words or phases that get lodged in my brain, begging to take up eternal residence.

10. “It’s A Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow”: Carousel of Progress. Maybe it’s the singalong aspect of the song’s appearance during the attraction, but once I start singing, I just can’t stop.

9. “To infinity and beyond”: Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin. I don’t care what else Tim Allen does, he’s always Buzz buzzing in the back of my brain.

8. “Backside of water”: Jungle Cruise. There is a fair amount of variability in the Jungle Cruise patter depending on the preferences of your skipper, but I’ve never had a Jungle Cruise journey where they didn’t mention the backside of water. I wait for it; it clicks; and it holds on tight.

7. “Wazoooooooowski”: Monster’s Inc. Laugh Floor. It’s not just the word “Wazowski” that sticks with me, it’s taskmaster Roz’s guttural moan of the green guy’s name that digs a hole in my subconscious. And the fact that I know Roz is watching, always watching doesn’t help.

Roz's vowels burrow in my brain.
Roz’s vowels burrow in my brain.

6. “Lovely, lovely”: Country Bear Jamboree.” There are several Country Bear earworm contenders. I do have occasional bouts of “Blood on the Saddle” infestation, but more often than not it’s bear Henry’s laudatory words for Teddi Berra that swirl in my subconscious.

5. “In the Tiki, Tiki, Tiki Tiki, Tiki Room”: Enchanted Tiki Room. I should know better than to even enter the Tiki Room. Nothing good can come of it, most especially the grip of this most odious and inevitable of earworms.

4. “Yo, ho, yo, ho, a pirate’s life for me”: Pirates of the Caribbean. It’s groovy the first two or three thousand times it runs through the back of your brain. I’ve even played this song at home for fun on the semi-regular, but when it takes hold, this one is particularly challenging to evict. Pirates are like that.

The worms words are even written above the attraction entrance.
The wormy words are even written above the attraction entrance.

3. “And a ghost will follow you home”: Haunted Mansion. “Grim Grinning Ghosts” is the Haunted Mansion tune that spooks many guests with its earworm capabilities, but I rarely find that the song sticks with me. On the other hand, the spooky “ghost will follow you home” admonition often haunts me for hours.

2. “Por favor manténgase alejado de las puertas”: Monorail system. Yes, technically the monorail is not in the Magic Kingdom, but the driveby counts in my book. Not only do I get the earworm after riding the monorail, but those “por favor” sounds wiggle around in my head almost any time I’m in a conveyance with automatic doors. If you’re in the elevator with me at the mall, you’re going to hear muttering some Spanish under my breath. Sorry.

Many people find that these dolls have earworm potential, but I am somehow immune.
Many people find that these dolls have earworm potential, but I am somehow immune.

1. “It’s the wildest ride in the wiiilllderness”: Big Thunder Mountain Railroad queue. With so many other catchy notes and noises present at the Magic Kingdom, it makes no logical sense that this would be the sound that is the hardest for me to shake. Perhaps it’s the interval of repetition while you’re waiting for the ride to start or the coupling of the phrase with the pre-thrill anticipation of the attraction, but no matter the reason, once I hit the Big Thunder queue, my mind will be taking a wild ride for an indefinite period.

You’ll note that I’ve omitted the Disney soundbite that would most stereotypically fall into the earworm category: the song from It’s A Small World. (Which I’ve recently learned is perhaps the most played song OF ALL TIME.) While others complain that the singing dolls use subversive trickery to burrow their siren song into their brains (that sounds sort of zombie-eque, doesn’t it), I’ve never found that song to be particularly sticky. Sure, you hum it while on board, but I find that the melody dissipates as soon as I’ve disembarked from the happiest cruise that ever sailed.

So folks, it’s time to sound off on your favorite (or least favorite) Magic Kingdom earworms. Is there a particular song or phrase that stays with you long after the attraction has passed? Have you ever skipped an attraction to avoid inviting an earworm? Let us know in the comments below.

You May Also Like...

Erin Foster

Erin Foster is an original member of the Walt Disney World Moms Panel (now PlanDisney), a regular contributor to TouringPlans.com, and co-author of The Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line. She's been to WDW, DL, DL Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, Aulani, DVC Vero Beach, and DVC Hilton Head. She's a Platinum DCL cruiser and veteran of 10 Adventures by Disney trips. Erin lives near New York City, where she can often be found indulging in her other obsession - Broadway theater.

19 thoughts on “Top Ten Magic Kingdom Attraction Earworms

  • We are horrible about quoting things from Disney World all the time, both on trip and we take it home with us!

    Last October we attended our first MNSSHP, so that trip I had Boo to You’s “It’s really not so scary” stuck in my brain. Hubby and I both kept saying it during the whole trip. It still is imprinted on my brain.

    Other than that, I guess my top bits are:

    “Take small children by the hand” – this one’s heard everywhere it seems

    Grimm Grinning Ghosts – it’s really the “now don’t close your eyes and don’t try to hide or a silly spook may sit by your side” that sticks with me

    “It’s all pure magic, wrapped up in pixie dust, welcome to a place where dreams come true” – The welcome medley gets me teared up each time and sticks with me

    “There was blood on the saddle” – how can you not love the Country Bears? We randomly quote this all the time.

    The tiki tiki tiki room – need I say more 🙂

  • I drove my family crazy when I was 8 years-old singing “Tiki tiki tiki in the tiki room.” Same trip my brother (12 year-old) would randomly burst out with “There’s BLOOOOOOOD on the saddle.”

  • If you go on small world with smaller lines, it’s not so bad. The song gets irritating if you’re backed up in the white room for 30 boats. Otherwise, it’s not that pervasive in the beginning of the ride.

  • I assume that since you do not have “it is a small world” as Number One (nor on the list at all), you did a list of the top 10 after that for it should clearly be number one. I brace myself every time before I get on that ride that I will have that song in my head for awhile.

  • “Yo Ho, Yo ho” gets stuck in my head alot, my son plays Assains Creed Black Flag, and even though the song is not on the game, I will still start singing it.
    As far as the Jungle Cruise. This happened a very very long time ago at Disneyland, but my brother and I will still tell this story. A very talented cast member decided to do something different than the back side of water. out of nowhere the cast member said “Batton down the hatches, hang on tight, we are going in. DIVE DIVE DIVE UGA UGA UGA.” To this day when I go on the Jungle Cruise you will hear me say under my breath “Dive Dive Dive UGA UGA UGA”

  • Oh Great now I am going to have the Tiki Tiki Room stuck in my head. LOL Actually my son plays Assains Creed 4 black flag and even though the song is not on there every time he plays I start singing Yo ho Yo ho.
    As far as the Jungle Cruise: My brother and I will tell this story all the time because it only happened once and I wish I remembered this amazing cast members name. This is what I rember of it “Batton down the hatches. Hang on tight, Were going in. DIVE DIVE DIVE UGA UGA UGA. So now even though its been more than 20 years ago whenever I go on the Jungle Cruise you will hear me mutter under my breath Dive dive dive LOL

  • “it’s a small world” is by far the worst earworm at the Magic Kingdom for us. So much so that even walking by the bloody ride gets the song stuck in our heads. 😀

    –Lee & Robin

  • “Hurry baaaaack, hurry baaaack” from HM is one for me. Not in a bad way though.

  • Great list, but I’d have to include “Good Morning, Good Morning” and “Walking right down the middle of Main St. USA.”

    • yes. “Good Morning Good Morning” sticks with me until I chase it out with “Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow,” “Zip-a -dee-doo-dah,” or “It’s a Small World.” I’m usually good after that.

  • My Number 1 is “Por favor manténgase alejado de las puertas” but Zipideedoodah is a very close second!

  • Good list! After I read your first paragraph, the monorail warning popped right in my head.

    The Haunted Mansion one for me is, “this chamber has no windows, and no doors” with the laugh.

  • I’m with you on the Monorail warning, I say it all the time.

  • It’s a Small World is the Worst earworm by far ! Maybe it doesn’t stick in your head but I think you are in the minority. It tortures me for hours after I ride it.

  • I think “it’s a small world after all” is the grand prize winner in the ear worm contest.

    • Completely! It’s a Small World!

  • Zip-a-dee-do da! This is a great list 😉 Just missing one… I can’t seem to remember which one though… oh darn, now it’s in there.

    • You know, I did think of this. But much like the Small World song, this obvious choice never sticks with me long term. I’m perfectly happy to sing along during the attraction, but after I’ve taken the plunge, the melody disappears.

      I’m curious if others find Zip-a-dee-do-da as sticky as Small World.

  • I always get ‘it’s the wildest ride in the wiiiillderness!’ stuck in my head too! I love it though


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *