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Saturday, August 17, 2013

Mr. Negativity Looks At Disneyland Again

Who's the clown that thought Vinymation was a good idea?
Mrs. DisneylandTraveler called me at work a couple of days this week and talked about making a trip to Disneyland. Given our present situation of taking care of her father who cannot care for himself makes thinking about a trip to Disneyland seem like an impossibility. But she tries to keep my mind in the Disneyland game and one thing about Mrs. DLT, she never stops trying to figure out ways to do anything.

But her phone calls made me smile. A co-worker brought back some park maps from her trip to Disneyland a few weeks ago and I pinned them up on my cubicle wall. After I hung up the phone, I stared at the maps and thought about the sounds of Disneyland - the music playing on Main St, the drumbeats of Adventureland. I thought about taking a nice trip around the Rivers of America on the Mark Twain. Yeah, a trip to Disneyland - just what the doctor ordered.

But also while staring at the maps, I looked at the things that kind of rub me the wrong way about the place, the bad ideas, the eyesores, the things that should have been removed years ago. Yes, out of my momentary joy comes Mr. Negativity.

Captain EO: - Disney retired the dated attraction back in the 90's but brought it back to either 1) remember the musical legacy of the late Michael Jackson or 2) sell a few more t-shirts and trinkets based on the talents of a musical artist who died far too early and tragically. The story is that after this summer Captain EO will close again for good to prepare for a Star Wars based 3D movie. If it closed to tomorrow, that would not be soon enough. Incredibly silly and horribly dated - goodbye forever Captain EO.

Pinocchio's Daring Journey: - The dark rides of Disneyland's Fantasyland are a mixed bag for sure but bringing up the rear is the Pinocchio ride. My family has an ongoing discussion of the worst / most boring ride in the park. Pinocchio gets my vote. Who doesn't love Jiminy Cricket or When You Wish Upon A Star? Neither the character or song can save this ride. At lease it is very (very) short.

Innoventions: - Yeah, the display of the Iron Man suits is pretty cool. And I find Honda's ASIMO robot incredibly fascinating but Innoventions, as a whole, is one gigantic waste of space. Everyone knows it including Disney.

ToonTown: - My position through the years is clear. Keep Roger Rabbit's Cartoon Spin, keep Mickey's House, and move the Gadget Go-Coaster over to DCA's It's A Bug's Land. The rest of ToonTown can be bulldozed for something much better. 

Finding Nemo's Submarine Voyage: - The subs are cool. The Finding Nemo animation the ride forces you to look at it not. The subs need a real adventure as they were intended - not a cartoon.

Critter Country: - Splash Mountain is a great ride, and Disneyland classic. Heck, I may be one of the few who actually likes the Winnie the Pooh ride. The Hungry Bear Restaurant is in an absolute lovely setting away from the maddening crowds and constant noise of the park. I object to the name Critter Country. Just seems like the area could be called something better.

Rancho del Zocalo Restaurant: - The absolute worst place to eat in Disneyland from our experience. A lovely setting for horrible Mexican food. The place used to serve up ribs once upon a time. Those were much, much better.

Aladdin's Oasis: - Nice building facade. Too bad there's nothing behind it any more other than a place to sit down.

The Golden Horseshoe Saloon: - Yo....Disney....This stage, in this building, is to be used for performances of Billy Hill and the Hillbillies and nothing else. They pack the place each and every time. Quit trying to change things.

"Ah...quit your nit-picking, belly aching, and complaining" some of you might say.

All right. I will. There's at lease 150 things to love about Disneyland. I'll go think about those instead.

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