ZOOTOPIA+ is an interesting beast. It’s more juicy content from a world that we loved exploring but the reason for its existence is one that’s as confusing as it is entertaining. The train-ride back to Zootopia is ready now and only available on Disney+.
Now that we’ve seen all six episodes, we have a clearer understanding of what the dubiously named Zootopia+ is about. From the name, we thought perhaps it was some sort of take on its parent platform, Disney+ but after seeing the entirety of the first season, we honestly can’t tell you why the show boasts this particular name.
Still, the contents are fun. The 7ish-minute long short stories zero in not just on beloved characters from the 2016 film but actually the backstories and setups for their particular scenes. For instance, when Fru Fru (the shopaholic shrew who is nearly crushed by the giant donut during the chase with Duke Weaselton) we learn the events of exactly what lead her to be there in that exact moment.
So, basically, we have six short stories which all have tie-backs to moments from the original film — that includes cameos from the main cast including Judy Hopps, Nick Wilde, and Flash. Some episodes are more successful than others but it’s fantastic to really be living in this boom time for Disney Animation where filmmakers are allowed to not just stretch their wings and explore their talents but also up-and-coming talent can cut their teeth.
While each story basically play out like deleted scenes or extended versions of scenes you’d experience on the Blu-ray home release, they are still a welcomed return to a great franchise. Are they worthy of picking up a Disney+ subscription? Of course not, but that’s not the role these funny stories are meant to fulfil.
Here’s a breakdown of all six episodes, courtesy of Disney.
- Hopp on Board – When Judy boards the train from Bunny Burrow to Zootopia to begin her life as the big city’s first bunny cop, Stu and Bonnie’s youngest daughter, Molly, hitches a ride atop the train, forcing the down-to-earth duo out of their comfort zone and into an action-packed rescue mission.
- The Real Rodents of Little Rodentia – Newly engaged, Fru Fru kicks off wedding planning with enthusiasm and flourish—at least until her scene-stealing cousin Tru Tru arrives to assume the role of Shrew of Honor. A battle for the spotlight ensues until a close call with a giant donut reveals that for better or worse, no one knows you better than family.
- Duke the Musical – After being wrangled and arrested in a giant donut—compliments of Officer Judy Hopps—clever criminal weasel Duke reevaluates his life, pondering where he went wrong—in song. In a musical aptly staged in his own mind, Duke contemplates how to go from a small time crook to the Big Time!
- The Godfather of the Bride – A touching tale about the powerful arctic shrew known as Mr. Big revisits Fru Fru’s big day when he delivers a revelatory father-of-the-bride speech. Taking guests back in time to his days as Mr. Small, a new immigrant to Zootopia, he imparts the wisdom he gained then about the importance of friends, family and community.
- So You Think You Can Prance – ZPD dispatcher Clawhauser persuades his boss, Chief Bogo, to audition for “So You Think You Can Prance.” The stakes are high as the ultimate prize is a dream-come-true opportunity to dance on stage with megastar pop sensation Gazelle.
- Dinner Rush – As super server Sam urgently tries to finish her restaurant shift to make a once-in-a-lifetime Gazelle concert, Flash and Priscilla show up at the last minute with hopes of a once-in-a-lifetime dinner.
See it for Yourself
ZOOTOPIA+ is available now on DIsney+!