“Dude! Way to go!”
Don McCoy, Park President of Six Flags’ Discovery Kingdom, had just learned that a visiting reporter from Petaluma was a recent passenger on the park’s brand new Wonder Woman: Lasso of Truth ride – not just once, but twice in a row. It certainly says something that the same guy who greenlit the attraction’s recent installation would actually be impressed that any sane adult would willingly experience Lasso of Truth more than once within the same 15 minute period.
“I just rode it myself, a few minutes ago,” McCoy says, gesturing with pride at the glistening new attraction, into which a new crop of nervously giggling recruits is now being loaded. “It’s amazing! But you did it twice? That’s impressive, man. I’ve seen kids go on it over and over - but once is enough for me. For today, anyway.”
The delightfully equilibrium-adjusting attraction officially opened to the public on Saturday, May 28, with a grand ribbon cutting and an appearance by Wonder Woman herself (well, an impressive impersonator, anyway). It’s the latest DC Comics-themed ride in a gradually expanding corner of the park, where Superman and the Joker already have roller coasters bearing their names. The new attraction – versions of which have been in use at other Six Flags parks for the last few years, is essentially a giant swing.
It starts out gently, eventually propelling riders to heights of 24 stories, at speeds of up to 70 miles per hour. Lasting about four-minutes from start to finish, Lasso of Truth’s capacity is 40 riders, who sit around a large ring with their legs dangling into space, a surprisingly secure restraint system locking each guest into place as they plummet into the air, the ring gradually rotating so riders can see out across the area in every possible direction.
As if to emphasize the gravity-challenging risks of Lasso of Truth, a quick-acting attendant can now be seen hosing off one of the ride’s shiny plastic seats. Evidently, one of McCoy’s fellow riders experienced a bit of surprise reverse-peristalsis.
Perhaps that’s why the park sells Dramamine in so many of its gift shops.
“Weightlessness affects everybody differently,” McCoy explains.
Among Lasso of Truth’s other first riders was the Bay Area blogger known as Twisted Coaster Girl, whose professional assessment, after completing her own first ride on the thing, was, “It was a lot colder than I thought it would be.”
Talk about ‘thrills and chills.’ For the record, Twisted Coaster Girl also rode Lasso of Truth twice in a row.
“It was so awesome,” she says.
Awesomeness aside, Coaster Girl does make an astute point. Part of the experience is the rapidly shifting temperature change, as riders rise up into the air, where it’s noticeably chiller than it was on the ground. That’s a factor that is emphasized by careening forwards and backwards at 70 mph. All of that is part of the fun of such thrill-ride experiences, says McCoy.
“With some thrill rides, you clench up and close your eyes, and stay that way, scared to death, the whole time,” he says. “But this one actually invites you to open your eyes, stretch out your legs, and look around. The views are amazing and the wind – when this thing gets going the wind is intense.”