Toy Story is 24 years old. You’d have to literally be made of plastic to not know about Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Rex, Slink, Hamm and the Potato Heads by now. We love them. We have a friend in them. Rest assured that the original gang are still in play mode for the magnificent Toy Story 4, which revolves around a rollicking adventure in an amusement park. Rest assured, the sequel: The hype for this latest Pixar creation is the real deal. I loved it and so will you. (And, phew, it’s not nearly as traumatizing as Toy Story 3). But this time our regulars are joined by a trunk-load of wacky, weird and altogether wonderful newbies. Here’s a rundown of all your future favorites. To infinity and . . . eh, you know how it goes.
Voice: Tony Hale (Veep)
The back-Story: Young Bonnie — the proud young owner of all the classic toys, now that Andy has gone to college — crafts Forky out of pipe-cleaners and a plastic spork during kindergarten orientation. He’s not amused and desperately tries to go home. Home = the garbage bin.
Memorable line: “I’m trash!!!!”
Why you’ll love him: He’s not the sharpest spork in the drawer. Still, once Forky realizes that Bonnie needs him and finds comfort in him, he embraces his newfound role in her life.
Voice: Keanu Reeves
The back-Story: Mr. Caboom is a proud Canadian stunt man. He comes equipped with cool costume and a motorcycle. Just do not get him started on the boy who unwrapped him on Boxing Day, only to ditch him soon after.
Memorable line: “Yes I Canada!”
Why you’ll love him: Yeah, like you need a reason to fan over Reeves — i.e., the Internet’s current boyfriend — in two-dimensional comedy mode. Wait until you see him do his upside-down pose on the bike.
Voice: Christina Hendricks (Good Girls, Mad Men)
The back-Story: This poor doll is all dressed up with no place to go. Because her pull-on-the-string voice box is broken, she’s been relegated to a dusty shelf in an antiques store. You know who does have a working voice box? Woody the cowboy (Tom Hanks).
Memorable line: “You have what I want.”
Why you’ll love her: With her blinking doe eyes and sweet voice, Gabby Gabby may seem like a manipulative villain at first glance, but she’s really just a doll that wants to be taken home and loved. Can’t fault a girl for that.
Voice: Ally Maki (Cloak & Dagger, Wrecked)
The back-Story: Giggle is the tiny-yet-resourceful friend of Bo Peep (Annie Potts). When the Bo infiltrates the antique store for a rescue opp, she’s got her back. And her sheep’s backs.
Memorable line: “Coming right down”
Why you’ll love her: Wonderful things come in small packages.
Ducky and Bunny
Voices: Keegen-Michael Key (Ducky) and Jordan Peele (Bunny)
The back-Story: These two fur-ball partners-in-crime are not at all pleased about hanging out on a wall as carnival prizes. When they finally break free, they join in on Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen)’s grand escapade.
Memorable line: “Winner, winner chicken dinner” (You gotta be there, trust me.)
Why you’ll love them: Do not look to ducky and bunny as tragic characters that will make your heart swell and eyes water up. The Key & Peele stars have reunited to deliver pure comedy hijinks. I’m willing to bet big money the two improvised their dialogue, which comes as rapid-fire pace.
Toy Story 4 is in theaters on Friday, June 21
Also published on Medium.