One of Universal Orlando’s most popular thrill rides was recently entombed for a long-overdue refurbishment, but Revenge of the Mummy has now reopened. We’ve unwrapped the details on the attraction’s newly enhanced special effects.
Although it wasn’t one of Universal Studios Florida’s opening-day attractions, the Revenge of the Mummy indoor roller coaster has now been in operation for nearly half a decade longer than the Kongfrontation dark ride it replaced, which certainly qualifies it as a theme park classic. It’s long been a favorite of the Unofficial Guides, but many of the ride’s signature special effects had started to look less spectacular with age. All that has changed, thanks to a recent unpublicized upgrade of Revenge of the Mummy’s lighting and projection effects, giving this ancient undead creature a new lease on life.
Revenge of the Mummy, which was based on the Brendan Frasier film trilogy (and no relation to the Tom Cruise reboot), closed for refurbishment on January 4, and it reopened on January 16 with little fanfare. Universal Orlando didn’t advertise the ride’s renovation the way they did when Spider-Man and Forbidden Journey were converted to 4K, but observant fans instantly noticed some important improvements that went far beyond the usual seasonal maintenance.
There are no signs of the alterations ahead as guests enter the attraction. If anything, the archaeological artifacts might have a fresh new coat of dust, but I didn’t identify any significant changes inside the queue.
One major recent change, which was actually implemented ahead of the Christmas crowds, was the installation of Plexiglass dividers in the boarding station.
When the park first reopened, alternate rows on ride vehicles were left empty to socially distance guests. Now, riders are seated in every row, although each party (including single riders) still gets a row to themselves.
It isn’t until your expedition vehicle departs the station that Revenge of the Mummy’s upgraded effects really become apparent. Cameras obviously aren’t permitted during this wild ride, so until you can experience it for yourself, you’ll have to rely on my description of the updates found within:
- In the opening chamber, the lighting is more vibrant and textured (a common change seen throughout the attraction), and the shadowy shape moving up the stairs to the left is more distinct.
- Reggie’s wrapped-up animatronic now thrashes vigorously, and the Imhotep animatronic exhibits a better range of upper body movement after leaping from the sarcophagus. However, he still isn’t as expressive as he was when the ride originally opened.
- The lighting leading up to and inside the treasure room is brighter and more colorful, and all flame effects are working full-blast.
- In the dead-end insect room, the wall projections are far brighter and sharper than before, and the physical bug effects have been fully restored.
- The ride’s biggest change comes in the turntable, where a brand-new digital animation follows your car as it rotates. The dialogue remains the same, but the ghostly purple mummy face is now far brighter and more detailed.
- The large mummy head that cars are launched through has been similarly enhanced with additional color, and the ghostly flat figures glimpsed during the coaster portion seem more vibrant.
- The Imhotep animatronic in the window of the false unloading station appears less arthritic than before.
- The cutouts along the finale track are brighter and more colorful, especially the smoke-breathing mummy head.
- The fiber-optic Med-jai symbol at the end sparkles brighter than ever.
Revenge of the Mummy may be middle-aged by themed coaster standards, compared to newcomers like Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. But it has always managed to hold its own against upstart E-Tickets in the thrill department, and now it has up-to-date effects to match. Best of all, Brendan Frasier’s video farewell is exactly the same as before; hopefully, he’ll still be yelling about his cup of coffee for many years to come.
For all there is to see and do at Universal Orlando, check out The Unofficial Guide to Universal Orlando.