Superman Returns Back to Six Flags New England!
(Photos by DJ and Vinny)
Originally, when Premier Attractions went through a $40 million investment in 1999 to turn Riverside Park in Agawam, MA into Six Flags New England, the star attraction of that expansion was Superman: Ride of Steel, an Intamin Hyper Coaster. It was (and debatable, still is) really THE star attraction at Six Flags New England that brought the people through the turnstile until 2015, when Wicked Cyclone, an Rocky Mountain Construction rebuild of the old Cyclone roller coaster, was introduced (that’s pretty debatable.)
Unfortunately, the ride suffered a major incident in 2004, when a guest fell out of a ride. It was reported that he was too large for the ride, and the ride’s then T-bar restraint system failed to properly close on him.
Superman: Ride of Steel won 3 Golden Ticket Awards. It was a super popular, and highly regarded ride in the coaster community.
In 2009, under the regime of Mark Sharipo, Superman: Ride of Steel got reintroduced as Bizarro. With that, came new trains with on-ride audio, special effects such as flame throwers throughout the ride, special lighting and fog effects. In order to meet the state of Massachusetts’s requirements, the new trains came with a new restraint system. Although it was at first reported that Bizarro would get El-Toro (At Six Flags Great Adventure) style restraints, it ended up with a different style of restraint, causing a lot of complaints. Bizarro met a lot of criticism throughout the coaster community, due to factors including bulky headrests and uncomfortable restraints. Bizarro got only one Golden Ticket Award in 2009.
Six Flags management went through a drastic overhaul in 2010-2011. Mark Sharpio was let go as CEO, and then park president Larry Litton was replaced by now park president John Winkler. John was even vocal during ACE (American Coaster Enthuasists’s) Coaster Con event held in 2013 about wanting Superman to come back.
On September 3, 2015, as part of the Six Flags chainwide new for 2016 capital additions, Six Flags New England announced that they were going to transfrom Bizarro back into Superman: The Ride. It was something many people wanted for years, however, some were upset by the fact that their weren’t new trains.
Let’s take a look at Superman: The Ride in 2016!
New signs have been posted directing people to Superman. Let’s head this way!
The Superman logo looks super duper nice!
Welcome back Superman! The park isn’t fully done with painting everything, but in general, the red better than purple on this world class steel coaster.
Here’s a look at the test seats. Nothing really has changed with the restraints, but new, less bulky headrests were installed.
Also, the park took the effort to repaint the seats blue in addition to the new headrests. It’s great to see the park take the effort to do the little things that make a great impression.
Also, the old mist tunnels got new lights.
Doesn’t the lift hill look great in the red?
The first drop’s tunnel got rethemed into Superman with the standard Six Flags sunbrust.
Here’s a close up of it.
Here’s some of the fun things to look at in line. The park also but some headlines in the queue saying “Superman defeated Bizarro!”
Here’s a look at the trains making it’s way into the tunnel.
The tunnel also got new lights. We don’t have a super great pictures to show you, but they are much brighter.
This is what the view outside the tunnel looks like.
Here’s a look at the van outside the tunnel. It got added with the Superman transformation, and looks great.
The audio box didn’t get removed and replaced with 2 new seats, since those would’ve costed extra money, and quite frankly, doesn’t help capacity that much. I’m sure the park will use the audio box for the VR sensor once the VR component debuts on June 11th!
The ride experience hasn’t changed much, but it’s great to see Six Flags New England remarket a popular attraction by giving it a popular brand, Superman, instead of Bizarro, which many people don’t know of! The transformation looks great, and some elements aren’t done yet, but the ride is great the way it is.
We can’t wait to experience the VR component on Superman in June!