Just like the actual universe, Mall of America’s Nickelodeon Universe is doing a bit of expanding in the near future. Starting in the summer of 2020, it will morph to Nickelodeon Multiverse, bringing together every character that’s been created for the cable network since its inception back in 1977.
“A lot of people called me crazy when I brought this idea to the table,” mused Nickelodeon Experiential Director, Gavin Pugh, who walked us through the park after hours. “But our audience is ready for an all-encompassing, self-contained multiverse of seemingly unconnected freaks colliding inside the same hamster ball.”
Pugh was brought in last year by Nickelodeon to reimagine the park’s image. When asked who was requesting this kind of highly ambitious change to the park, Pugh said “no one.”
“I started by taking two shows that had no reason to exist in the same universe and I’d mash them up. Ah, perfect example!” Pugh exclaimed, pointing to an oversized figure of the Wonder Pets at the feet of a character from Good Burger. “You may be asking how Kel could possibly be serving fries to these wacky creatures? That’s the genius: it’s all chaos.”
During the tour, Pugh showed off the Turkey Television/Spongebob Squarepants Tilt-a-Whirl, a Eureeka’s Castle/Avatar the Last Airbender Bounce House, and a petting zoo inspired by Hey, Dude and The Angry Beavers. There’s also Pugh’s Salute Your Shorts/iCarly Freefall, which suspends riders upside-down for 10 minutes before dropping them an exhilarating 35 feet.
Other rides slated for Nickelodeon Multiverse include a Pinwheel/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Log Flume, a Fred Penner’s Place/Dora the Explorer Dark Ride, an Are You Afraid of the Dark?/CatDog Gravitron, and the Ren and Stimpy and Drake and Josh Lazer Tag.
Families can experience these cartoon monstrosities any time of day, any day of the week.
“Mark my words,” Pugh exclaimed while surveying the construction of Danger Mouse/Nick News with Linda Ellerby Bumper Cars, “In a hundred years, kids will still be enjoying this place and wondering who could’ve possibly created such a perverse playland. And I’ll look up from Hell and say, ‘You’re welcome.’”