Mattel introduced its Hot Wheels line of die-cast toy cars in 1968, the year of an ugly and deeply divisive presidential election pockmarked by violence. The tiny model cars were able to provide some degree of distraction back then, so perhaps they’ll be able to do so again in the nearly as ugly election year of 2016. Gavin Free and Daniel Gruchy, the benign lunatics of the popular British-made web series The Slow Mo Guys, have put their Hot Wheels to the test with a series of ludicrous, experimental, Rube Goldberg-esque tracks employing such unlikely props as cotton candy and balloons filled with glitter. And, as is their wont, they have filmed their experiments in extreme slow motion using a high-speed camera, enabling viewers to savor every last millisecond of miniaturized automotive chaos.
In the hands of the excited Free and Gruchy, these unfortunate Hot Wheels toys are pressed into extreme service, passing through literal walls of ice and glistening bubbles. The most astonishing of the sequences in this video, however, might be the fourth track, the one with the bubbles filled with glitter. The experiment is a spectacular success, if “success” can be defined as “glitter going absolutely everywhere in a sparkly cataclysm.” The effect even impresses the lab-coated hosts themselves, who exclaim, “That I did not expect!”