In 2011, Pixar started releasing short animated films to supplement the feature length Toy Story films, called Toy Story Toons. The shorts pick up where Toy Story 3 left off, with Woody, Buzz and Andy's other toys now living at the home of Bonnie Anderson, and were first released in theaters before screenings of other Pixar/Disney films.
The three short films, and the film they opened for, include:
- Hawaiian Vacation (2011), played before Cars 2.
- Small Fry (2011), played before The Muppets (2011).
- Partysaurus Rex (2012), played before Finding Nemo's 3D re-release.
A fourth short titled Mythic Rock has been in Development Hell since 2013. The shorts were followed by two specials, Toy Story of Terror and Toy Story That Time Forgot.
The Toy Story Toons shorts provide examples of:
Barbie and Ken end up in Bonnie's bedroom after a failed attempt to stow away on her trip to Hawaii, so the toys all try to create their own island paradise.
- Didn't Think This Through: Ken and Barbie sneak into Bonnie's backpack under the belief she'd take it on vacation with her to Hawaii. They fail to consider the idea that Bonnie was unlikely to take her school backpack with her.
- Foot Popping: Gender flipped when Barbie and Ken kiss.
- Furry Confusion: The entire franchise already runs on this trope (in regards to living animal toys behaving like animals, or humans) but it was lampshaded in the scene where Barbie and Ken had their fantasy riding trip - Barbie gets Bullseye (a toy horse that behaves like a horse), who runs like the wind, whilst Ken gets Buttercup (a toy unicorn that behaves like... a human) who tells him to get off his back.
- Medium Blending: Ken and Barbie go scuba diving on an empty fish tank in front of a TV showing live-action fish. As a prank, Hamm changes the channel to a shark, also live-action.
- Shout-Out: An inside one: as mentioned in the DVD commentary, Chuckles the Clown's luau chant translates to "Bound and rebound", a reference to the Pixar short Boundin'. This trope gets double points because Boundin' was narrated by Bud Luckey, the voice of Chuckles.
- Vertigo Effect: When Ken realizes he's not in Hawaii.
- Wrong Turn at Albuquerque: Ken sneaks himself and Barbie into Bonnie's backpack to go with her to Hawaii, not realizing she probably wouldn't take her school backpack with her until the other toys point it out.
Buzz is left behind at a fast food restaurant when a kid's meal Buzz decides to replace him. There he encounters a therapy group of discarded kids' meal toys.
- Brand X: "Poultry Palace" is all about chicken-based meals, like Kentucky Fried Chicken. The kid's meals and associated toys look more like McDonald's meanwhile.
- Burger Fool: It's incredibly obvious how much the Poultry Palace cashier doesn't like his job.
- Easy Impersonation: Parodied. No one buys that Fun Meal Buzz, who is much smaller and smells like French fries, is the real Buzz; except for Rex, who buys Fun Meal Buzz's story that he shrank in the ball pit.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: If you pause at the right time when Buzz stacks the tartar sauce boxes before making his escape, you might notice the contents are practically inedible, since its ingredients includes "molted feather extract" and "distilled chicken perspiration".
- Kids' Meal Toy: Bonnie goes to Poultry Palace, where the Fun Meal promotion at the time is for Buzz Lightyear toys. Bonnie wants a Mini Buzz figure, but the only one Poultry Palace has is for display. The Mini Buzz figure on display manages to escape and swap himself out with Bonnie's Buzz, who gets mistaken for a Fun Meal toy and taken to a support group for discarded Fun Meal toys from years past. Buzz tries to escape while Bonnie's toys try to get the Mini Buzz back to Poultry Palace.
- Our Vampires Are Different: One of the discarded fun meal toys is a vampire engineer named Vlad. He was discarded because no one would board the Vampire Express.
- Public Domain Soundtrack: Fun Meal Buzz sings a short snippet of "Camptown Races" while skating around Bonnie's room.Fun Meal Buzz: Playtime's coming super soon, doo-dah, doo-dah! Playtime's coming super soon, oh playtime day!
- Punny Name: Pretty much all the Fun Meal toys have a pun-based name.
- Recycled Premise: Buzz Lightyear meeting a fast food kids' meal toy version of himself already happened in Toy Story Treats. Plus Woody commenting on the toy's greasy fast food smell.
- One of the discarded kid's meal toys was based on Condorman. On top of the obvious Disney shout out, there's a probably unintentional twist here in that this live-action hero was played by Michael Crawford — whose work in Hello, Dolly! proves important in WALL•E.
- The rejected Ninja Clown toy could be a reference to a certain old arcade game with the same name.
When Rex finds himself left behind in the bathroom, he puts his limbs to use by getting a bath going for a bunch of new toy friends.
- Baths Are Fun: Rex helps some toys to get a party going in the bath. The part before this in which Bonnie is having imaginative fun with the toys counts too.
- A Day in the Limelight: Rex has always been a supporting character. He is the main protagonist this time around.
- Here We Go Again!: At the end, the pool toys ask for Rex's help.
- Man-Made House Flood: Or rather, toy-made house flood. Rex can't turn off the faucet, causing the bathroom, and eventually the whole house, to flood.
- Opening the Flood Gates: Rex ends up flooding the bathroom, so when the other toys go in after him...
- The fuzzy toilet seat cover is Sully's fur.
- When the bath toys are lamenting how they can't play after bath time due to a lack of arms, one toy cries out in anguish, "No more tears!".
- Stress-Induced Mental Voices: Whenever Rex is worried about the party getting out of hand, he hears Mr. Potato Head calling him "Party-Pooper Rex" earlier and doubles down.