With Wreck-It Ralph John C. Reilly channeled his quirky charms and unrelenting energy into a video game villain who was sick and tired of being the bad guy. It was a sweet and salty story with a glitchy girl sidekick (Sarah Silverman), an ass-kicking lady commando (Jane Lynch), and a chipper handyman (Jack McBrayer) who all learned to look past their differences and game coding to band together and save the arcade from a egomaniacal madman.
It’s a marvelous movie I personally feel we just don’t revel in enough. And thankfully, Disney’s giving its cast of colorful characters a second go with a sequel. Oh My Disney has just unveiled its Kim Kardashian-styled title:
As you probably guessed, this spunky sequel will pitch these pixeled pals into the wild realm of the Internet, where of course Ralph will—by definition—wreck it. Reilly, Silverman, Lynch and McBrayer will all reprise their roles for the movie. And co-director Phil Johnston promises it too will center on the friendship between Ralph and Vannelope. While co-director Rich Moore promised, “Our production team has been hard at work designing a world that takes something we all think we know—the internet—but shows it in a whole new, imaginative way.”
Now, I want more Wreck-It Ralph, period. But I’m admittedly nervous about this premise. The internet is such a fast-shifting and expansive culture, how can the filmmakers hope to capture it as fully and with as much verve as they did old-school video games in the first film? And if they lace in new characters based on memes (more Nyan Cat, less Pepe The Frog), won’t the movie feel instantly dated?
Presumably, the Disney team has been working on this pitch since Wreck-It Ralph hit in 2012. So, hopefully the same brand of diligence and emotional insight that’s gone into subsequent Disney animated offerings—like Frozen, Zootopia and Moana—is going into this sequel. And yet, I worry. The internet is a strange, strange place. Are the filmmakers biting off more than even Pac-Man can chew?
Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 opens March 9, 2018.
Kristy Puchko has no time for those who don’t recognize the greatness of Wreck-It Ralph.