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Disney+ Review: Zootopia+

November 9, 2022

By John Corrado

★★★ (out of 4)

Disney returns to the richly populated world of their 2016 animated film Zootopia in the aptly titled Disney+ series Zootopia+, a collection of six short films set in the animal metropolis.

But rather than being a direct sequel to the movie, Zootopia+ is instead a collection of off-shoot stories that are meant to be taking place during the same timeline as the film.

Directed by Josie Trinidad and Trent Correy, the twist is that each of the half-dozen episodes plays around in a different genre. The first one, Hopp on Board, is a madcap chase that embraces a comedic, slapstick tone as Bonnie (Bonnie Hunt) and Stu Hopps (Don Lake) try to retrieve their youngest bunny child after she hops on the train with Judy (Ginnifer Goodwin) going to her new job in Zootopia. The second episode, The Real Rodents of Little Rodentia, is a parody of Real Housewives reality shows, with little shrew Fru-Fru (Leah Latham) preparing for her wedding day.

The third episode, Duke the Musical, switches gears again, offering a song-and-dance number that finds weasel Duke (Alan Tudyk) imagining himself moving up the ladder from petty crime to the big time. The fourth episode, The Godfather of the Bride, is the best of the bunch, a nicely done riff on The Godfather Part II that finds mob boss Mr. Big (Maurice LaMarche) reflecting on first immigrating to Zootopia as a child with his mother and helping build Little Rodentia, at his daughter Fru-Fru’s wedding.

The fifth episode, So You Think You Can Prance, is a riff on dance competitions, with Clawhauser (Nate Torrence) getting his dream chance to dance for pop star Gazelle (Shakira) with Chief Bogo (Idris Elba) as his partner. Finally, the sixth episode, Dinner Rush, finds notoriously slow sloths Flash (Raymond S. Persi) and Priscilla (Kristen Bell) settling in for a nice dinner at a restaurant, as their hurried server Sam (Charlotte Nicdao) tries to finish in time for Gazelle’s big concert.

With the amount of potential there was to build on and explore more of this world, Zootopia+ doesn’t always do as much as it could have. In fact, a lot of little moments with the main characters are simply recycled directly from Zootopia for context purposes, with the focus being on what these supporting characters were doing in the background during the film (it’s similar to the WALL•E short BURN•E in this way). So it’s not quite the true follow up that fans may have wanted, but as a Zootopia fan, these six shorts are still cute and diverting enough to easily recommend on streaming.

The six episodes all clock in a little under ten minutes, making Zootopia+ an easy and enjoyable series to watch in one sitting. It offers a number of funny moments throughout, with The Godfather of the Bride as the clear standout of the collection.

The Godfather of the Bride

Zootopia+ is now available to stream exclusively on Disney+.

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