Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (2024)

Inside Out 2 introduces an entirely new set of emotions to join those that were introduced in Inside Out. Each of these emotions add additional insight into Riley's (Kensington Tallman) emotional state of mind as she begins her teenage years. The original emotions of Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust, and Anger are disrupted by the arrival of new, darker emotions who upend Riley's emotional landscape. Each emotion, existing and new, reveal something new about Riley's personality.

Each emotion featured in Inside Out 2 continues Riley's character development. The new emotions of Ennui, Envy, Embarrassment, and Anxiety may be overwhelmingly negative. However, the story showcases the fact that there is room for all emotions, and that each emotion makes us who we are.

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (1)
Inside Out 2


Release Date
June 14, 2024

Kelsey Mann
Amy Poehler , Maya Hawke , Phyllis Smith , Lewis Black , Tony Hale , Liza Lapira

10 Ennui

Voiced by Adèle Exarchopoulos

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (2)

Inside Out 2 introduces Ennui as part of five new emotions for Riley. She captures the boredom and lethargy that characterize teenage emotional development. Ennui only ever speaks in a monotone voice and demonstrates her disinterest in absolutely everything. While she does show that she can take action in a crisis, she typically shows what can only be described as complete disinterest when tasked with managing Riley's emotion console.

Ennui is a frustrating emotion because she brings out some of Riley's worst personality traits. This emotion rarely benefits Riley. For example, Ennui makes Riley use sarcasm during a conflict rather than a mindful, empathetic discussion. Ultimately, Ennui is a defense mechanism for Riley. Ennui prevents Riley from engaging with emotions that make her less comfortable, which could ultimately stunt her overall emotional growth.

9 Envy

Voiced by Ayo Edebiri

Inside Out 2 introduces Envy, a sweet-looking emotion with big eyes. Like the other new emotions, she initially gets along with the original crew. Envy is jealous of everything that she sees and zeros in on anything she thinks she wants. This includes traits of other emotions. She is always quick to point out areas in which she thinks she lacks. Ultimately, her entire job is to be in tune with what Riley wants and ignore anything that she already has.

At her best, Envy allows Riley to advocate for herself and her wants and needs. However, this emotion often leads Riley to focus on what she lacks. It is devastating to watch Riley lose focus on what makes her special when she compares herself to those around her. Envy shows how she can be a powerful motivating and protecting force for Riley. However, it is clear that more often than not, this emotion exerts a negative influence over Riley.

8 Embarrassment

Voiced by Paul Walter Hauser

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (4)

Embarrassment is a pink elephant-like emotion who hardly speaks. In Inside Out 2, Embarrassment is tasked with keeping Riley out of socially awkward or embarrassing situations. Even though he is large compared to the other emotions, he evidently tries to keep himself as small as possible. Although Embarrassment is initially caught up in Anxiety's takeover of Riley's emotions, he ultimately helps the original emotions and restores them to their rightful places.

What makes Embarrassment so charming is that he simply wants what is best for Riley, and to protect her. His low self-esteem is deeply relatable. This low self-esteem is behind his ultimate goal to keep his head down, and by extension Riley's, so that he can remain in comfort. Watching him try his best to counteract Anxiety's actions makes him endearing. Even when the new emotions get swept up in Anxiety's plans for Riley, Embarrassment does his best to keep Riley and the other emotions calm and collected.

7 Nostalgia

Voiced by June Squibb

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (5)

Nostalgia is a minor character in Inside Out 2, and her appearance is brief. She appears as a small, elderly woman with a kind face and soothing voice. Although she has not been featured yet, Nostalgia reminds the other emotions that she has always been inside Riley's mind. Nostalgia tells the other emotions that she is not needed by Riley just yet, as there is still so much of life that Riley has not experienced.

Although Nostalgia says she is not needed yet, it is clear that she is a critically important part of Riley's emotional landscape. The fact that she reminisces about Riley's emotional history shows that she is already a part of Riley's emotional landscape. Nostalgia exudes comfort and care, and is content to simply exist in the present moment while considering the past. This care for Riley stands out, even though Nostalgia only appears for a brief moment.

6 Anger

Voiced by Lewis Black

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (6)

Inside Out introduced Anger as one of Riley's original emotions. The character is short, red, and flammable. He remains impulsive and prone to outbursts. Like the other original emotions, Anger is imprisoned by Anxiety, and has to find his way back to the control room of Riley's mind. When he and the other emotions return to Headquarters, they have to restore the balance that has been disrupted while Anxiety has been in control of Riley's sense of self.

Since Anger remains a part of the group of original emotions, his role remains largely in the ensemble. Like in Inside Out, it is clear in the sequel that Anger's main concern is justice for Riley. He never hesitates to point out any perceived slight, with sometimes mixed results. He is lovable because he is crucial in stabilizing Riley's sense of self. Although he has a short fuse, there is never a doubt that his primary concern is Riley getting what is best for her.

5 Disgust

Voiced by Liza Lapira

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (7)

Disgust is another emotion who was first introduced in Inside Out. In the first entry, the character was voiced by Mindy Kaling, who is currently involved in other projects. In Inside Out 2, Disgust must also adjust to the introduction of the new emotions that appear as Riley approaches her teenage years. As in Inside Out, in the sequel, Disgust is primarily focused on protecting Riley from anything she deems unworthy. Disgust never compromises her standards for anything.

Disgust has always been a fun emotion to follow since her introduction in Inside Out. While she can come across as aloof or mean, she really focuses on keeping Riley safe. It is clear from Disgust's story in Inside Out 2 that she just wants to help Riley develop her sense of self. While Disgust has to join the other original emotions in returning to Headquarters, she distinguishes herself by showcasing how well she uses her unique attributes to keep Riley away from all things distasteful.

4 Fear

Voiced by Tony Hale

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (8)

Fear is one of the original emotions who was introduced in Inside Out. He is a fast-talking, stick-shaped emotion. Fear was originally voiced by comedian Bill Hader in Inside Out. In the sequel, Fear has one of the most difficult times adjusting to the introduction of the new emotions led by Anxiety. Fear has to join with the other original emotions to return to Headquarters after Anxiety has the original emotions repressed and locked away.

Fear is most compelling in Inside Out 2 when he is compared to Anxiety. There could have been an entire story that revolved around the relationship between Fear and Anxiety, and how Anxiety is an extreme version of what is a healthy human emotion. It remains clear that Fear also only has Riley's best interests at heart, and never wants to evolve into an emotion that is out of control. Anxiety makes Fear look calm.

3 Sadness

Voiced by Phyllis Smith

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (9)

Sadness was the core of Inside Out. More specifically, her relationship with Joy was what carried the story. Here, Sadness has evolved herself, as has her friendship with Joy. Seeing them paired up again shows just how far these two have come in working through their differences. Sadness plays a crucial role in helping the original emotions get back to Headquarters, and in restoring balance to Riley's emotional state.

Like the other emotions, Sadness is extremely protective of Riley. It is devastating to watch her make such an effort to protect Riley from some of her worst impulses and not succeed. Sadness is an essential piece in re-building Riley's sense of self. There would be less stability in Riley's mind without Sadness serving as a voice of reason and a calm presence. Inside Out 2 showcases the fact that Sadness is capable of being a leader among the emotions in Riley's mind.

2 Joy

Voiced by Amy Poehler

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (10)

Joy returns as the leader of the original emotions introduced in Inside Out. While Joy is still the leader in Inside Out 2, she is trapped with other emotions when Anxiety takes control of Riley's emotional Headquarters. Joy is among the most impacted by the introduction of Anxiety, as Anxiety seeks to take control of Riley's emotional well-being. Joy has to make her way back to Headquarters, and help restore emotional balance. Joy's story continues to tie the Inside Out universe together.

What makes Joy so compelling in Inside Out 2 is that she has so much in common with Anxiety. The fact that they each have to overcome their impulses to control Riley's emotions allows them to understand one another. Watching Joy work together with Anxiety to do what is best for Riley makes her endearing. Joy could have so easily become a toxic emotion to counter Anxiety. Instead, her grace demonstrates why she should continue to lead Riley's emotions.

1 Anxiety

Voiced by Maya Hawke

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (11)

Anxiety is one of Riley's newest emotions introduced in Inside Out 2. She is the leader of the new emotions that represent Riley's transition to the teenage years. Shortly after being introduced, Anxiety takes control of Headquarters and suppresses all of Riley's original emotions. Inside Out 2 features Anxiety as a villain in an abstract sense. However, ultimately, Anxiety learns to integrate into Riley's sense of self, which involves her relinquishing control.

Anxiety is a complex and dynamic emotion, and initially causes Riley a lot of pain. However, the way she is portrayed is compassionate and validating. The way that Anxiety is allowed to go on a journey herself makes her easier to appreciate. While she does cause a lot of chaos, she too is just trying to do her best to help Riley navigate a new emotional landscape. The existence of Anxiety does not mean Riley must now exist without Joy. Instead, Anxiety creates room for Riley to grow and change and navigate the world in a new way.

NEXT: The Best Disney Movie From Every Year of the 2000s

Every Emotion in 'Inside Out 2,' Ranked (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Dong Thiel

Last Updated:

Views: 5392

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (59 voted)

Reviews: 90% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Dong Thiel

Birthday: 2001-07-14

Address: 2865 Kasha Unions, West Corrinne, AK 05708-1071

Phone: +3512198379449

Job: Design Planner

Hobby: Graffiti, Foreign language learning, Gambling, Metalworking, Rowing, Sculling, Sewing

Introduction: My name is Dong Thiel, I am a brainy, happy, tasty, lively, splendid, talented, cooperative person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.