For starters it is two stories. The Headless Horseman and The Wind and the Willows. The stories are completly unrelated. I suppose neither one was long enough to fill an entire 90 minutes. Of course, that never stopped the makers of White Chicks, but that's another story.
In the film, Mr. Toad is a little frog who becomes enamored at the idea of owning an automobile. His quest for wheels causes much hilarity.
When Disneyland opened up in fabulous Anaheim California, Mr. Toad was one of the original rides. A few decades later Walt Disney World opened in Florida. It too opened with a Mr. Toad's Wild Ride.
The ride was rather unique. It involved a bizarre high speed journey through colorful sets illuinated by black light. Along the journey you get hit by a train, you die and go to hell.
I'm not kidding.
Granted it is the Disney version of hell, but there is no denying that it was hell. Devils with pitchforks, fire, and Hitler high fiving John Belushi.
OK, the Hitler thing wasn't there. That's at the Carousel of Progress.
The ride in Walt Disney World (to be referred to as WDW from here on) was VASTLY different than the one in Disneyland (to be referred to as Kangaroo Bob's Chicken & Ribs from here on).
For starters in WDW the ride let out in 2 directions. Each direction offered a DIFFERENT ride. The one at Kangaroo Bob's Chicken & Ribs only has one side.
Fantasyland was the home of Mr. Toad in both Florida and California. The exterior of the building, however was different. WDW offered a midevil tent structure and Kangaroo Bob's Chicken & Ribs offerers a large ornate brick and concrete building.
Sadly, WDW's Mr. Toad was torn down in 1998 to make way for The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. Despite the "many adventures" claim, it is only one ride, not 2 like Toad was.
Over the years, Mr. Toad's Wild Ride has (probably) become even more popular than the movie it was based upon. It is frequently referenced in TV and movies.
For example in the Kevin Smith film Mallrats the following exchange takes place:
Tricia Jones: I heard that you were going to propose to Brandi Svenning at some theme park. When are men going to learn that women want ROMANCE, not Mr. Toad's Wild Ride...
Brodie: Hey, now, be fair. EVERYONE wants Mr. Toad's Wild Ride.
Or this quote from Saturday Night Live:
Christian Slater: (when asked about his dating techniques) I'm crazy! I'm like Mr. Toad's Wild Ride.
Or this quote from Titanic:
Jack Dawson: You're going to die an old woman, warm in your bed, not here, not this night.
I know, that had nothing to do with Mr. Toad, but I love that quote. It always makes me cry!
Other Quotes that make me cry:
Mother Teresa: The hunger for love is much more difficult to remove than the hunger for bread.
Julie Andrews: All love shifts and changes. I don't know if you can be wholeheartedly in love all the time.
Bill Clinton (to Monica Lewinski):It doesn't matter what anybody says; you just deny it."
That still brings a tear to my eye.
So, in closing, WDW is an emptier place now, without Mr. Toad. You can. however, still enjoy Mr. Toad and his wild ride in Kangaroo Bob's Chicken & Ribs!
The oldest theme park in the world
Kangaroo Bob's Chicken & Ribs, Arkasas