Inside Out 2, Riley (trailer still)
(Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Riley Is Growing Up in ‘Inside Out 2’

We are returning to Riley’s mind in the upcoming Inside Out 2, and things have moved on a little bit for our girl.

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We first met Riley, and her many emotions, in the Disney Pixar film Inside Out. This film had everyone, even the coldest of hearts, crying in theaters over an imaginary friend that Riley had simply grown too old to play with anymore (trying to hold back tears thinking of it).

Riley was still a child when she and her family made the move to San Francisco, a move that would turn her world upside down and leave her emotions scrambling. As Joy desperately tried to bring Riley happiness by simply ignoring Sadness and pushing the emotion down, Joy ended up doing more harm than good. Both the audience and Riley learned that feeling sadness is important and necessary. So what’s next for Riley to tackle then? Well, as was hinted at the end of the first film, puberty.

In Inside Out 2 Riley is no longer a kid, she’s a … teenager! Cue alarm bells in Riley’s parents’ brains. The trailer shows us that Riley has only juts turned into a teenager, celebrating her 13th birthday with her parents and blowing out the candles on her cake. The animators have aged her up, showing her dealing with the classic trials and tribulations associated with this time in our lives, such as acne and braces. Oh the joys of youth.

Along with her physical appearance changing, Riley has a few new surprises in the form of new emotions. Joy and the gang must welcome into the control room Anxiety, Ennui, Envy, and Embarrassment, as well as a quick hello from nostalgia. Riley has to contend with these new emotions crowding her head, which makes her feel the need to bottle up her older emotions, suppressing Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust, and Sadness. Joy and the gang will do whatever it takes to get back to the control room to help Riley, but perhaps they too will have to make adjustments now their girl is growing up.


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Laura Pollacco
Laura Pollacco (she/her) is a contributing writer here at The Mary Sue, having written for digital media since 2022 and has a keen interest in all things Marvel, Lord of the Rings, and anime. She has worked for various publications including We Got This Covered, but much of her work can be found gracing the pages of print and online publications in Japan, where she resides. Outside of writing she treads the boards as an actor, is a portrait and documentary photographer, and takes the little free time left to explore Japan.