I am an adult. I attend college. I can drive a car. I can vote. I have traveled many places on my own. Yet there is one place on Earth where I can’t be found without a stuffed animal; Disneyland.
That’s right, folks. I carry around a 15″ plush Baymax stuffed animal with posable arms at the Happiest Place on Earth.
His name? Baymax. His movie? Big Hero 6.
I was excited to see Walt Disney Studio’s newest animated feature Big Hero 6 when it came out last November mostly because I had just gone away for college and had made many hardcore Disney fan friends. See? Look how cheesy we all were going to see it on its premiere date:
While Big Hero 6 is not my favorite Disney animated movie, I still liked it very much. It was beautifully animated, hilarious and heart-wrenching all at the same time, as only Disney can somehow manage to do. But the movie’s scene stealer was undoubtedly a gigantic white robot with a non-threatening, huggable design named Baymax, who has a love of cats, a firm moral code, and cannot fathom fist bumps.
Baymax is voiced by Scott Adsit. You would know him from pretty much everything, as he has played bit parts in many movies! Most notably (and my personal favorite), he played Pete Hornberger on 30 Rock:
Now, unless you don’t possess a soul, there is no possible way that you can come out of Big Hero 6 having not fallen in love with Baymax. It is truly a wonder that an oversized marshmallow with only two dots and a line for a face can make an audience smile, then bring them to tears once the film hits its emotional core.
I attend college nearby Disneyland, and I am the owner of an Annual Pass to the park, which is both a blessing and a curse! Before the movie came out, there were two 15″ Baymax stuffed animals on sale; regular Baymax, and action Baymax. A week after the film’s release, regular Baymax was gone, much to my dismay, and only action Baymax remained. However, after another two weeks, all Baymax plushes were sold out park-wide.
In early February, another shipment of Baymax plushes (both forms) were released, and regular Baymax quickly became the fastest purchase I had ever made in my life. I returned to the store from where I bought it not four hours later, only to find all of them gone again! Disney has not made another restocking of these toys since that day.
The day I bought Baymax, I put him in the small backpack I take to Disneyland and carried him around the park. I have not been to Disneyland without him since, because the reactions I got were incredible. I melt every time I hear a child exclaim “BAYMAX!” at the top of their lungs. I have given SO many fist bumps in the past six months (“Ba-da-la-da-la-da-la!”)! I actually have started keeping tally on how many park patrons ask me where I got my Baymax per day (and no, the park no longer sells them, but you can find them online).
The happiness I feel every time someone smiles because they see this little stuffed animal is irreplaceable, and is the reason why he comes with me when I go to the park. I even started an Instagram documenting his travels around The Happiest Place on Earth, @baymaxonthetown.
I sincerely hope that Mr. Adsit and the creators, writers, and animators of this character know how much happiness just his appearance brings. Walt Disney would be proud!