PHOTOS: Figment Little Golden Book Only Features Original Beloved Ride, References Kitchen Kabaret & More EPCOT Center

Shannen Ace

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PHOTOS: Figment Little Golden Book Only Features Original Beloved Ride, References Kitchen Kabaret & More EPCOT Center

As we reported on Wednesday, the “Figment” Little Golden Book is available two weeks early at EPCOT. We visited the park to pick up our own copy of the book, which tells the approximate story of the original Journey Into Imagination attraction, rather than the two subsequent versions of the ride.

Figment Little Golden Book – $5.99

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We found “Disney Figment” in Creations Shop.

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The cover features the little purple dragon in his yellow sweater and holding a giant paintbrush. He’s sliding down a rainbow while the paintbrush splatters pink paint behind the book’s title.

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In the background is the Imagination! Pavilion from EPCOT and the Dreamfinder steering his Dream Machine.

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On the title page, Figment is holding a rainbow umbrella as he plays in the jumping fountains of the Imagination! Pavilion.

Figment is written by Imagineer Jason Grandt and inspired by the lyrics to “One Little Spark” by Richard M. Sherman and Robert. B Sherman. It’s illustrated by Grandt, Scott Tilley, and Nick Balian.

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Just like the original Journey Into Imagination ride, the book starts with the Dreamfinder on his Dream Machine. He introduces himself with a much shorter version of the ride’s original speech before he introduces Figment. In the background are some of the same floating images that appeared in the ride.

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The next page shows the inner workings of the Dream Machine with the “One Little Spark” lyrics that describe Figment. Then the lovable dragon pops out of the machine saying, “Dreamfinder, I’m just right!” Dreamfinder’s speech is printed in red serif font, while Figment’s is in purple sans serif font. The pair have a quick exchange that is again a condensed version of the ride’s original dialogue.

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Figment and Dreamfinder then begin collecting sparks of imagination. Their dialogue (some of it direct from the ride, some of it altered, and some of it new) is between the original “One Little Spark” lyrics. Some of the artwork on this set of pages corresponds to the art section of the original Journey Into Imagination.

On the left page is Mr. Dairy Goodz from “Kitchen Kabaret,” which was a show in The Land Pavilion when EPCOT opened. The rocket blasting off from a yellow planet is a reference to “Man in Space,” a 1955 episode of the “Disneyland” TV series. The mustached man with a red top hat is Tony Baxter, co-creator of Figment.

The nature artwork on the right is reminiscent of The Land Pavilion as it appeared in the 1980s, particularly the “Symphony of the Seed” scene from Listen to the Land (the precursor to Living With the Land). This distinct artwork was by Walter Peregroy, who also worked on Journey Into Imagination. He designed the mural in the ride’s load area, the ImageWorks elevator shaft, and elements of the arts scene, including the fanciful paper carousel animals, which we’ll also see in the book.

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This next scene continues to reference the original ride’s art section, which had white tree props that came to life with color. In the book, Dreamfinder is painting orange tree leaves green and yellow while Figment pours colorful flowers into a pot. The text on this page refers to mixing colors and making rainbows.

Orange Bird, a mascot from Adventureland at Magic Kingdom, is sitting in the tree that Dreamfinder is working on.

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The art section concludes with an image lifted directly from the ride: Figment, wearing a beret and bowtie, pouring a rainbow out of a golden pot into a pond. He stands on purple cliffs surrounded by flowers and crystals. Three of the ride’s fantastical carousel animals are behind him.

While the ride then transitioned into a scary stories section, the Little Golden Book focuses more on books in general. In a reference to “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea,” Figment floats underwater in a diver’s suit, while the Nautilus submarine is attacked by a giant red squid in the background. In front of Figment is a book depicting the Nautilus.

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The next page features more imagery lifted straight from Journey Into Imagination. Dreamfinder is composing a story while sitting in front of an A-shaped volcano. Lightning descends from storm clouds behind him and the word “avalanche” is spelled out in the rockwork.

Figment is surfing on an avalanche of books featuring familiar names and iconography. Two pairs of glowing red eyes peer out of a book called “Nightmare.” Serpent-like monsters peek out of a “Monsters” book. A devilish tail sticks out of a book called “Tales of Terror.” And another book reads “Cat” and “Bat,” with the two creatures silhouetted against a moon. All these are references to elements of the ride’s original scary stories scene.

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Just like the ride, the book then moves on to the theater. Dreamfinder directs Figment as he juggles and dances on a stage in front of an audience. The stage is similar to the ride’s set piece, but the marquee reads “Magic Eye Theater.” Figment also appears to be dressed like Bert from “Mary Poppins” in his “Jolly Holiday” outfit.

The Magic Eye Theater is attached to the Imagination! Pavilion and opened in 1986 (three years after Journey Into Imagination). In the past, it hosted “Magic Journeys,” “Captain EO,” and “Honey, I Shrunk the Audience.” The Disney & Pixar Short Film Festival is currently presented in the theater and Mickey and Minnie meet in the lobby.

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The next page is inspired by the musical laser show Dreamfinder presented on the ride. But instead of more abstract laser images, there are white images of Figment playing different instruments, set against colorful swatches. The instruments and colors may be referencing a musical game that currently exists in the “What If?” labs of ImageWorks.

On the opposite page, Dreamfinder declares, “Now, Figment, what about science?” This transitions the book into the ride’s science section. Dreamfinder is rotating a lever in front of a large globe, just like the ride.

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On the next page, the Dreamfinder is steering a rocket version of the Dream Machine, with rainbows shooting out from behind it. This is new for the book, but the image of Figment in a spacesuit atop a ringed planet is from Journey Into Imagination.

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On the next page, Figment is excited to collect “Electron beams and crystal prisms, gyroscopes and magnetisms,” but Dreamfinder stops him because the Idea Bag is full. They head to the Dreamport to drop off their sparks. This section of dialogue is actually lifted from the first scene of the ride.

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The next pages show Figment and the Dreamfinder at the Dreamport — which was the original ride’s second scene. Figment, flying in front of the Imaginometer, tells Dreamfinder, “I’ve made a special spark just for YOU!”

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The last page re-creates a famous photo (below) of the Dreamfinder holding Figment in his arms in the now-extinct rainbow tunnel of ImageWorks. In the book, Figment is presenting Dreamfinder with a drawing he’s made of the two of them together.

Dreamfinder and Figment in the rainbow tunnel of ImageWorks

The Figment Little Golden Book is still available for preorder on Amazon, where it has a January 2, 2024 publishing date. Read our full history of Journey Into Imagination.

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