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I really like Jaws a lot, but I'm not willing to spend 60 minutes in line for it...even on the very last day!

 

My thoughts exactly. Bring on the new credit...even if I don't know anything about Harry Potter.

Oh, I'm not saying that. I'd much rather have Jaws than anything Potter. I'd be more willing to wait 20 minutes for Jaws thsan FJ, for example. Wouldn't wait 60 minutes for either.

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Loving the photos of Jaws over the last few pages. I only rode Jaws once, way back in 2000 during my only trip to Florida. Interestingly the attractions I enjoyed the most at Universal were Jaws, Back to the Future and the Hitchcock experience, all of which I'll never get to experience again. Seeing the Photo TRs over the last few days have helped me relive the magic a little so thank you.

 

But for me Jaws was a strange ride. I remember when I went on it it was with my whole family. After the ride I thought it was a bit cheesy and lame. But over the years, when I look back at it, I realise just how much the ride stuck with me. The themeing was amazing. The ride, although still a bit cheesy, was a ton of fun and we laughed and smiled throughout the whole thing. The ride ops were so enthusiastic it was infectious. And really the special effects and the ride experience were quite good, no matter how fake the shark looked!

 

I'm not totally sad to see the ride go however, as everything must come to an end at some stage. However I'm not hugely enthusiastic about another Harry Potter ride replacing it. I've not had a chance to return to Orlando yet (hopefully I will in the next few years) so I've not had a chance to experience the WWHP so I'll reserve judgement until I do. But one thing I've noticed is that it's made for the fans of Harry Potter and not really as a way to introduce new fans. This worries me.

 

The one thing I remember about Universal was how most of the attractions gave a pretty good back-story, and even if they didn't you could still enjoy the ride as they didn't require previous knowledge to do so. I can understand how this could have been overlooked for the Harry Potter attractions as so many people have seen the movies and/or read the books. But still the vast majority of the population will not have read or seen a thing, or at the very least will not have total encyclopedic knowledge of the Harry Potter universe. From the ride-throughs of FJ that I've seen this could make for a very confusing ride. Why are we playing a game with balls, and hoops? Where did the spiders and dragon come from? Why is that tree moving? Yes the technology of the ride system is good, the movement of the seats and use of projections screens might be fun for a Harry Potter virgin but when they leave the ride they won't have a clue what just happened and will probably be asking questions, instead of talking about how much fun they just had.

 

See that was the beauty of Jaws. You didn't need to see any of the Jaws movies to enjoy the ride. It's almost as if Amity is a real place and the Jaws movies run along side it, rather than Amity existing because of the movies. It's simple, you go on a boat tour, you see some nice scenery, there might be a shark in the water, there is a shark in the water, you get attacked, you eventually escape with your life! Simple. Fun. Enjoyable. After the ride you can walk around a nicely themed seaside area and get your picture taken with the shark.

 

Now there's no reason why a similar process can't work with the new Harry Potter ride, but from the sounds of it they're once again trying to cram as much from the books and movies as they can into the ride, while at the same time adding a roller coaster element. The first time I read about the Gringotts bank in the Harry Potter books I immediately thought "This would make a great roller coaster!". In the books a normal trip to the underground Vaults is a roller coaster. Add a possible "rob the bank and escape" theme, throw in a few security "traps", a dragon, a giant, etc. and you have a ride right there. Harry and his friends don't even need to show up!

 

But I imagine that won't happen, especially if the leaked plans are to be believed. And that will be sad if true.

 

I'm still going to visit Orlando again sometime and I will go to Universal and IOA to give WWHP a go but I imagine, even for a wizard themed area, some of the old-school movie magic will be lost.

 

RIP Jaws. You've died of an electric shock so many times only to rise again, may you finally rest in piece!

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Thanks for that massive report Adam. I had really forgotten how awesome the queue/theming is on Jaws.

 

I think Jaws was one of the first rides I ever went on. I first went to Orlando when I was 4 and I remember being very scared! As I've gotten older, Jaws became more of a joke ride but I'll always have a soft spot for it.

 

I'm a HP fan girl, so anything HP related is fine by me!! Bring on Gringots!

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I was with my old friend Brian, who was visiting Universal Florida for the first time. He was very amused by how many attractions featured fire and explosions. Well, we rode Jaws, and he asked, "OK, how are they going to work fire and explosions into this ride?"

 

Then he saw this sign.

 

dsc02254_2.jpg

 

"Ah, the answer presents itself!"

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Wow, new parks allready, that's kind of sad to look at. I wonder how long it will be until

any demo work begins.

I wouldn't be shocked to see it start today. I'm sure one of us will head over to the park in the next week or two and get some sort of an update.

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I like Jaws, but what made it a hit or miss attraction was the skipper you got, I've had some really amazing ones that are just great at what they do, then I've had (I don't want to say bad because they weren't) but just kind of average skippers.

 

The ride will be missed but I'm even more curious as to what is going to be replacing it.

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Nice coverage, guys.

 

^ You just barely beat me to that point, which I agree with.

 

I think I'm mostly sad to see another "ride host" attraction disappear. What is Orlando down to now....four? The Great Movie Ride, The Backstage Tour, The Jungle Cruise, and Kilamanjaro Safaris....am I forgetting any?

 

Aside from the Safaris (which seems pretty pivotal to that park), with the Great Movie Ride and The Backstage Tour not real high on most peoples' lists, will we eventually see the Jungle Cruise as the only one left of its kind? Considering Living with the Land, Jaws, 20K, and even the front cab of the Monorail, we've either lost the human element or the entire ride. I gotta imagine the others might also be on somewhat borrowed time.

 

Personally, it's a real bummer to see these types disappear in favor of automation. There's something about the human interaction on rides like Jaws that was always enjoyable. Sometimes you'll get the host who's having a crap-filled day, but most of the time it's fun just to see an employee who's seemingly enjoying their job, and perhaps thinking, "Hey, my big break could come at any moment, 'cause you never know who's onboard."

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I unfortunately only had the operotunity to ride Jaws once, it was closed for the rest of the time I was at Universal, but I really did love it to death.

 

It was such a unique and one of a kind attraction that really ate through the crowds. I like Potter, but only to an extent. I would have rather seen a long rehab/update of Jaws with new theming and maybe a new tagline to bring in guests and then just kept the Potter Expansion in IOA and take out LC. But alas...

 

As for the slanted buildings, I believe that's a classic "forced perspective" effect that makes the buildings look bigger than they are when you're looking stright at them (ala Pottercastle).

 

EDIT:

 

If anyone is a Roller Coaster Tycoon fan, someone actually made the Jaws ride vehicle as a downloadable car. I can put the link up of anyone wants it!

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Wow, new parks allready, that's kind of sad to look at. I wonder how long it will be until

any demo work begins.

I wouldn't be shocked to see it start today. I'm sure one of us will head over to the park in the next week or two and get some sort of an update.

 

 

Amity is already all boarded up with walls. They wasted no time getting started with the progress.

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Wow, new parks allready, that's kind of sad to look at. I wonder how long it will be until

any demo work begins.

I wouldn't be shocked to see it start today. I'm sure one of us will head over to the park in the next week or two and get some sort of an update.

 

 

Amity is already all boarded up with walls. They wasted no time getting started with the progress.

If you're at the park today, please email me pics to robbalvey@themeparkreview.com

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Nice coverage, guys.

 

^ You just barely beat me to that point, which I agree with.

 

I think I'm mostly sad to see another "ride host" attraction disappear. What is Orlando down to now....four? The Great Movie Ride, The Backstage Tour, The Jungle Cruise, and Kilamanjaro Safaris....am I forgetting any?

 

Aside from the Safaris (which seems pretty pivotal to that park), with the Great Movie Ride and The Backstage Tour not real high on most peoples' lists, will we eventually see the Jungle Cruise as the only one left of its kind? Considering Living with the Land, Jaws, 20K, and even the front cab of the Monorail, we've either lost the human element or the entire ride. I gotta imagine the others might also be on somewhat borrowed time.

 

Personally, it's a real bummer to see these types disappear in favor of automation. There's something about the human interaction on rides like Jaws that was always enjoyable. Sometimes you'll get the host who's having a crap-filled day, but most of the time it's fun just to see an employee who's seemingly enjoying their job, and perhaps thinking, "Hey, my big break could come at any moment, 'cause you never know who's onboard."

 

Backstage Tour (At least the Tram Portion) has been automated for a while. So when your Tram gets stalled the "Narration" stops and you sit there in awkward silence, where as before at least the Host could stall. Whats even more Bizarre is that a live Cast Member still sits in the spieling position and occasionally will pick up the microphone.

 

Having a Live Skipper or Spieler on an attraction always adds so much life to an attraction. Thats another thing that Jaws I'm sad to see go.

 

*EDIT-

Wow those walls really want to make me pay 85 bucks to go to a park. Thats just pathetic. They could've at least taken down the signs.

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Not sure if I should like those walls as they are Jaws colored or hate them as they might be the most bland monochromatic construction walls in recent history.

 

 

 

 

 

`Chris "isn't really a construction wall snob and just wonders when they'll theme them to wizards" con

 

PS. Thanks Gregg for the pic.

 

 

Edited to say: Comcast is one of those rare corporations that actually ends their fiscal year at the end of the year (most end it in October and large corporations typically put off huge capital investments till the beginning of a new fiscal year), so I'd suspect that they have a huge crew of people that have been chomping at the bit for 1/2 to pass so they can immediately start demolition and then building.

 

Edit 2: Is there any sign of action over the walls?

Edited by Chroniq
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Wow those walls really want to make me pay 85 bucks to go to a park. Thats just pathetic. They could've at least taken down the signs.

 

You do realize that they just closed the ride last night, correct? Now that the walls are up, let the tearing down commence.

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