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Article: The Mecca of the Mouse


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I've actually been reading this article as it has been posted to Slate. I'm not impressed. The guy has done a fair amount of research, but then goes on to blow easy details. For example:

 

(It's one of this park's two wienies—the other being a replica Mount Everest.)

 

Wrong. Expedition Everest is not a recreation of Mt. Everest.

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Pretty entertaining review!

 

Loved the 'there are black people in Africa' and the figuring out there were gay people in the club - and of course the geeky 'hetero' types.

 

It's a real insight into the boringness that is America, frankly. Disney is the king of RM (reputation management) and scrubbing clean its robots.

 

It is basically what this guy said. Take more and you might as well become a Disney fan-boy/slave. That's what they want. Buy all the plastic good (made in China).

 

Crap, I'd rather enjoy a day at a REAL thrill park like Lake Winnie or Indiana Beach! It sure filled for a fresh read, that's for sure!

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Pretty entertaining review!

 

Loved the 'there are black people in Africa' and the figuring out there were gay people in the club - and of course the geeky 'hetero' types.

 

It's a real insight into the boringness that is America, frankly. Disney is the king of RM (reputation management) and scrubbing clean its robots.

 

It is basically what this guy said. Take more and you might as well become a Disney fan-boy/slave. That's what they want. Buy all the plastic good (made in China).

 

Crap, I'd rather enjoy a day at a REAL thrill park like Lake Winnie or Indiana Beach! It sure filled for a fresh read, that's for sure!

 

I'm going to make a wild guess and say you're probably in your teens or early 20s. I like Indiana Beach quite a bit, but it's hardly a substitute for a Disney park.

 

I think the guy is just a smug idiot grasping for things to gripe about. This article is way below the normal level of quality you'll find on Slate.com.

 

I enjoy Disney parks quite a bit, but am not a Disney fanboy. I have seen maybe 5 or 6 Disney movies tops. And I don't collect their plastic memorabilia. I don't hold Walt Disney on a pedestal, but I found that comparison to L. Ron Hubbard to be nothing short of repulsive.

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I've been meaning to catch up on reading this article but haven't made the time yet. I read most of the EPCOT segment, and though I've found it well written and fairly entertaing, it made it sound like the guy is just going there trying to rip the place a part.

 

He seems to criticize every ride and concept as if there is no reason why people should be interested, and blasts the technology because it's not all up to date. Then he rips apart the World Showcase because it doesn't feel like you're stepping off a freaking plane or something into that actual country. It just annoyed me 'cause the guy just doesn't "get it." I don't care how lame those rides sound, when I was a kid, I still looked forward to each and every one of them. And to this day, the World Showcase is one of my favorites sections out of every Disney park I've been to. Why does it have to be spot on? It's a freakin' theme park in Florida. The whole article is about how everybody worships Disney, so he's going in (single and childless, mind you) with insane expectations as if every single detail should be perfect and the technology should be the top of the world.

 

While it's a very interesting article, it just seems like his intent is to tear apart Disney and make people feel like suckers. I mean yeah, I can see how a single, childless adult wouldn't get everything, and that's kind of the basis of the article. It just seems at times he's trying too hard to shred the place. Granted, I'm basing this all off of the EPCOT section that I read and not the entire article.

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I think the guy is just a smug idiot grasping for things to gripe about. This article is way below the normal level of quality you'll find on Slate.com.

 

I enjoy Disney parks quite a bit, but am not a Disney fanboy. I have seen maybe 5 or 6 Disney movies tops. And I don't collect their plastic memorabilia. I don't hold Walt Disney on a pedestal, but I found that comparison to L. Ron Hubbard to be nothing short of repulsive.

 

This is exactly what I thought. I think he had the intent on going to the parks and not liking them, because they weren't where he would go on vacation. Instead of going in with an open mind when he was asked,( I'm guessing it was an assignment and not something he decided to do) he just relegates himself to the fact that WDW is an outdated idea that still finds a way to make people spend a lot of money. I can just picture this guy drinking Pinot Noir on a rooftop deck in Manhattan ragging on the simpletons in the world.

 

For the record, I am semi Disney Fan boy, but like it was said before I don't think this guy gets it.

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I can just picture this guy drinking Pinot Noir on a rooftop deck in Manhattan ragging on the simpletons in the world.

 

That basically summarizes my gripe with the article. He's pretty nasty and elitist in his critique of WDW. I'm not that big on World Showcase either, but his criticism of that amounts to, "Get a passport and go see the real countries you midwest rubes." But World Showcase was never intended to replace going to the actual countries. It's just a different form of entertainment.

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Yawn . . . another "intellectual" takes on Disney. The opinions he expresses are hardly new, but he does make a good point here and there. I share his feelings regarding "Celebration," and the "indoctrination" into all things Disney has always been a bit much (even to a fan of the parks like me).

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I find it amusing that the writer thinks that Audio Animatronics are on their way out. I know I speak for many adult park-goers who actually want to see AA figures MORE present in their new rides. And I think Disney knows turning everything into computer-animation and motion simulation is not what they want to completely become. Universal and Busch and Six Flags can do a lot of that type of stuff. AAs are one of Disney's stamps of greatness. Maybe if people stop lining up for Pirates and HM, they'll rethink things. But that aint happening anytime soon. Sorry, dude.

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I find it amusing that the writer thinks that Audio Animatronics are on their way out. I know I speak for many adult park-goers who actually want to see AA figures MORE present in their new rides. And I think Disney knows turning everything into computer-animation and motion simulation is not what they want to completely become. Universal and Busch and Six Flags can do a lot of that type of stuff. AAs are one of Disney's stamps of greatness. Maybe if people stop lining up for Pirates and HM, they'll rethink things. But that aint happening anytime soon. Sorry, dude.

 

He makes the mistake of judging AAs based solely on their 1960s renditions. I noticed that he didn't make disparaging comments about the Yeti, which is just a giant AA. I think, if anything, you'll see more AAs in the future. Robotics technology has really advanced in recent years, as was demonstrated in the robot dog thread that Robb posted. I can't wait to see what Disney will come up with 10 years from now.

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The author just betched the whole time about stupid stuff. And then conveniently left out details of any good experiences on other rides. He basically just began his trip thinking that disney sucked and tried to come up with meaningless things to support his idea. Who wouldn't like an area of a park because there weren't enough flies in it?! O and btw, there would probably be more fuss if everyone in harambe was black. That would spark some racial issues. duh!

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I found it odd that his whole goal was to report on how a single male person would go about a vacation at WDW, and he did absolutely none of that. It was just bitching, all the while throwing in witty remarks.

 

Glad he isn't a real writer, he'd be broke.

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So he went to WDW for a week by himself with the express goal of analyzing and dissecting its invidious effect upon our social structure? Wow, can't imagine why he didn't have a good time!

 

I also find it telling that after a whole week alone at WDW he doesn't seem to have met up with any new interesting people there, or even engaged anyone in conversation while there. It speaks a lot as to his demeanor and attitude during his "vacation". It takes hard work to not meet people when you're alone at WDW. Queues and Disney transportation were practically designed to meet you up with folks when you're alone.

 

News flash. People go to WDW time and time again because they let themselves "go" when they're there. They have fun with their friends and family in a colorful, dynamic and clean environment. That's the secret he seems to have missed.

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Why would you even bother to go to any Disney park unless you were either a fan of Disney or a fan of amusement parks? Obviously this guy is neither so it's kinda silly for him to try to vacation there in the first place. The whole article was just him trying to make the parks look dumb with what he considered witty observations. If he's going to be that uppity on his vacations, he needs to stick to art galleries, expensive seven course dinner restaurants and wine tastings. I'll stick with my fast food and amusement parks.

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I'd love to see Bill Bryson spend some time at the Disney parks. He'd probably hate them, but the resulting book or article could be hilarious. (Could be great chapter for a new edition of The Lost Continent, his travel book about the U.S.)

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I can understand the occasional point he makes but most of the time I agree with most of the people on this thread, he's finding really bad examples to try and back up his theory that WDW is rubbish!

 

I also agree about his attitude - it does come across that he didnt talk to anyone or make any new friends whilst in WDW, how?! I left my family to go off on my own during spectromagic last year and after my second ride on Big Thunder Mountain I had already made some new friends who rode with me on Splash Mountain and other rides before I returned to my family! I am really shy and even I made friends and talked to people when I was on my own in Disney, it's impossible not to!

 

I can't say I am that impressed with this article - it is nice when people acknowledge that WDW isn't perfect but thats no reason to hate it, it still has some of the best theme parks, hotels and water parks in the world in my personal opinion!

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Hmm... I got to this part;

 

"There are two big problems with this ride (besides there being no Debbie). First, as best I can tell, the kids sitting all around me have no idea who any of these actors are. Never seen any of these movies. They perk up solely at references to films that were released after 2005.

 

Second, these aren't video clips we're watching: Those famous scenes are being performed by animatronic robots. They have waxy faces and whirring pneumatic limbs. Frankly, they're weird. And they, too, leave the kids completely cold."

 

 

 

 

 

And just kinda stopped feeling like reading. I remember being 8 years old and thinking the great movie ride was the coolest. I don't get his gripe about the animatronic actors. Its a long and boring rant that doesn't really go anywhere...

 

I'll probably keep reading it tonight, but meh, I'm not impressed so far. Sounds like he went in there already wanting to rip the place apart and b****, which to me means he wasted a few days of his life and plenty of money.

 

I wouldn't describe myself as a disney fan boy/slave person. But I always loved living in Orlando and going to the parks every weekend and still definitely love going to the parks once every few years for a few days just because its a really nice, fun experience. I guess some people will go for a ride on spaceship earth or splash mountain and think its fantastic, others won't... Whatever, everyone can have an opinion, but I certainly fall in the pro group. I also don't like it when people hate on Walt Disney... Ever since I did a presentation on him in the 4th grade I've always looked up to him and thought he was a great person.

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Hmm...seems like to me the fanboys (or the so-called "non-fanboys") are not pleased because the author didn't put Disney in high regards as they do. I honestly liked his take on the park and his article was pretty entertaining. I don't hate Disney(don't really like it either), but you won't see me praise that place like damn near everyone else on this site does.

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Hmm...seems like to me the fanboys (or the so-called "non-fanboys") are not pleased because the author didn't put Disney in high regards as they do. I honestly liked his take on the park and his article was pretty entertaining. I don't hate Disney(don't really like it either), but you won't see me praise that place like damn near everyone else on this site does.

 

Not really. I didn't like his superior tone and flimsy points. Had he made stronger points in a non-douchey tone, I would have had no problem with him. I read Slate.com nearly every day, and this piece is way below their normal level of quality.

 

As for Disney's near universal acclaim, maybe there's something to that. They didn't become the undisputed king of the theme park business by sucking.

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Intresting article. I went through with only 2 days of his adventure. Epcot can use a slight revamp, but it's not as bad as what this guys opinion is. I found the ball ride he previously talked about was quite amusing to ride in. Seeing as to what themings there was back then.

 

I see this article as a taste of opinions mostly. Millions, maybe Billions enjoy Disney, but he may be the other 10% that didn't flick a switch for him.

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I haven't read the article yet, but if he rips on The Great Movie Ride, which is one of the most horrible attractions ever, I certainly approve of that. If he also rips on Stitch and/or Imagination, he should be recommended for a Pulitzer. Not everything Disney builds is a quality attraction.

 

dt

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There's another thing that's been bugging me about this article. Did anyone else find it strange that he says he stayed on-property and never left Walt Disney World, but he repeatedly references his rental car and having to park and/or use the parking lot trams?

 

If he was staying on-property why wouldn't he use Disney transportation? Not trying to find a conspiracy or anything... it just didn't make sense to me.

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^He used the car to get to Celebration, and maybe he didn't care to wait for buses and such.

 

^^Dave, he does say good things about "It's a Small World," which should lose him some cool points. And, hey, he didn't ride "Dinosaur."

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