It’s Tough to be a Bug! is a 4D film attraction created by Pixar and designed by Walt Disney Imagineering and is located at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. This attraction also used to be located at Disney’s California Adventure at Disneyland, but was removed in March 2018 to make way for a new Marvel attraction. In Animal Kingdom, the attraction opened with the park on April 22, 1998 and is located in the Discovery Island area of the park. As always, in this review I will be breaking down the experience as well as giving my thoughts on it!
This attraction is located towards the right side of the main hub. If you branch off the main hub to the right, the entrance will be right there. If you are waiting stand-by you will enter to the left. If you have a Fastpass+ reservation you will enter on your right. If you enter stand-by, you will first walk through the extended queue which gives a great view of the park’s icon, The Tree of Life. This will give you a great opportunity to take a closer look at the detail that was really put into it. Though this queue is not being used 90% of the time as you can almost always make it into the next show. Once you are through the queue, you will recieve your “Bug Eyes” (3D glasses) and wait in the waiting area. This waiting area is filled with a bunch of movie posters filled with bug puns.
Once inside the theater, you will move all the way down your row, per Disney standard, and take your seat. This theater sits 430 people, so if you want a good seat, stand in the middle of the line when going in.
Before the actual show starts, an animatronic Flik appears from the ceiling of the theater, telling the guests to put on their 3D glasses and to enjoy the show. The butterflies on screen then fly away and the show begins. The title card appears and Flik introduces the first bug of the show, the tarantula. The tarantula will shoot acorns at the audience while small blasts of air is aimed at the guests. The tarantula than leaves and the next bug is introduced, the termite. The termite believes the audience are intruders and proceeds to spray the guests with water. After the termite is the stink bug, who unleashes a bad smell over the entire theater. The villan Hopper then interrupts the show in impressive animatronic form. Hopper tries to exterminate the “honorary bugs” in the audience by spraying bug spray (smoke that fills the theater). The theater then goes dark and spiders lower from the ceiling to scare the guests. Hopper then gets scared off by a lizzard, the bees perform a finale, and the animatronic Flik on the ceiling tells tells the guests that is the show, and that magnifying glasses are for looking at little things and not hurting little things. Before you get up to leave, all bugs leave under you first, which is an effect triggered by small wheels at the bottom of the seat.
After the attraction experience ends, you will recycle your 3D glasses and head out the exit, which takes you back into the Discovery Island area of the park.
My Thoughts: I think this is a really solid attraction that is kind of a hidden gem at Animal Kingdom. I haven’t experienced this attraction since 2013, but I remember liking it. The 4D effects are really well done and are well incorporated into the film, and the Hopper animatronic is amazingly done. Despite all the positives I have to say, this is currently my least favorite 4D attraction at Walt Disney World (I’m not counting Short Film Festival over at Epcot). I think Muppet Vision 3D and Mickey’s Phillharmagic both are better than this. Reviews for those two will be up in the future to go more in depth with each experience. This one is by far the most intense because of the bug effects though. I believe this is the shortest of the 4D attractions at around 8 minutes, but it does so much in those 8 minutes to the point where it doesn’t waste a second. Although it’s my least favorite 4D attraction at Disney World, it is still a good experience and sometimes I forget just how cool it is.
Tips: This attraction normally sees the shortest waits in the park on any given day. This is a great attraction to go to in the late morning/early afternoon when it starts to get very hot. You can normally get into the next show no problem at any time of the day. If it is a very packed day at Animal Kingdom, the line may back up into the extended queue, but that rarely happens. This is a Tier 2 Fastpass at AK, but I would not even bother since you can usually get into the next show in the stand-by line anyways. Also, I have mentioned that the show is intense and I can easily see young kids being frightened by this show. If you or your kid are prone to being scared easily, hate 3D, or have arachnophobia, don’t bother with it.
Final Thoughts: It’s Tough to be a Bug! is a cool 4D experience that is well themed, intense for a Disney World attraction, and effects that are very well done. If you need to cool off or need a break at Animal Kingdom, I would recommend experiencing the show!