Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Part 2: Universal & Fun Spot America
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby cfc » Sun Oct 20, 2013 8:03 am

Aw, I made Joey sad . . . :(

Well, life goes on--in this case, to Universal.

Universal had made a lot of changes since my last visit: Springfield, Transformers, Despicable Me, "new" Spider-man. So, Erik Johnson (and later, just to confuse things, Eric Johnson) and I hit both the Studio and Islands of Adventure. My thoughts:

Even though I haven't watched The Simpsons regularly for a few years, I've always thought that the good people of Springfield were ideal for theme-park treatment. This Springfield redo was long overdo, and Universal did a good job. Duff Beer, which is the product of a local microbrewery, while not the greatest beer ever (especially for $7.00 a pop), is a cut above mass-produced beers like Budweiser. And although I wimped out on the the chicken-and-waffle sandwich, the pink doughnut was pretty good. I'll definitely go back to check out their other food offerings.

I'm not a fan of the Transformers movies or cartoons, but I like the ride quite a bit (more so than Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, but not quite as much as Spider-man). They story made at least some sense, even if you haven't seen the movies, and the mix of animation with physical effects was very well done. We rode it three times that day (thanks to the very useful single-rider line).

The "new" Adventures of Spider-man was excellent--the new animation looks great and has much more detail. This remains the best of the Universal Orlando attractions.

We skipped Despicable Me due to horrendous lines (we should've rode it first thing in the morning, when there was but a ten-minute wait). I'm not a big fan of the Minions, anyway, although I do find their master, Gru, amusing. Maybe next time.

Revenge of the Mummy and Men in Black were great, as usual, and Rip, Ride & Rockit was running quite well, despite all the national media attention it received earlier in the week. ;) One of these days, I have to try that mini-golf course, too.
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It's always important to remember where you parked; in this case, we were on the roof.
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Good morning, Universal. They were open from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm due to Halloween Horror Night, which I skipped this year.
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Well, time to purchase my one-day, two-park ticket (and part with about $130--sheesh!). Word to the wise: Park tickets are about $20 cheaper when purchased online. (I was kind of winging it that weekend.)
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What? Didn't this ride suffer a MAJOR NEWS-MAKING BREAKDOWN earlier in the week?
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Does Universal not care for the safety of their guests? ;)
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Not from the Walking Dead. Just thought I'd make that clear.
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"Hmm--I must find a way to relate to my human allies . . . Greetings! I am Optimus Prime . . . er . . . um . . . smoke 'em if you got 'em?"
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This is a very good ride, indeed.
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Must . . transform . . . and . . . steal . . . All Spark . . . for . . . Megatron . . .
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OK, here is the typical Hollywood interpretation of a useless government official who simply doesn't understand that the military is right about everything. (Then again, movies tend to stack the deck a bit.)
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"My apologies for that 'smoke 'em if you got 'em' message earlier, freedom fighters. So, er, fight the good fight, give 110%, and any other football-game platitudes you may care to emulate. Or just sit well in your seats. That's really all we can ask of you."
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Apparently, this is a "scare zone," so I acted appropriately.
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"Lame! Get your butt outta our zone, mortal moron."
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Yay! I've always wanted to visit Springfield.
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I think I see two of my role models down there.
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Yep, I've always patterned my life after Lard Lad . . .
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. . . and Chief Wiggum, like any good American.
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I wonder if you can get a Krusty-Partially-Gelatinated-Non-Dairy-Gum-Based-Beverage here?
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"A noble spirit embiggens the smallest man."
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Yay!
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Surly is the greatest Duff of them all.
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Duff Man--oh, yeah!
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Hmm--why am I suspicious of Kang and Kodos's intentions here?
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Anything you say, oh overlords of the galaxy!
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I love the signage in the queue. It speaks the truth.
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I didn't know that the ride was interactive. If you raise or lower your saucer to the level of the sensor, the signs spin around and there are appropriate sound effects (in addition to being taunted by Kang).
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There was no wait while we were there, but I imagine this sign speaks the truth on busy days.
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Yes, any misspellings and Kang or Kodos will smite you with their futuristic weapons, such as the dreaded board with a nail in it!
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Eric! Quit destroying Springfield!
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"Remember to tell all your Earth friends about how great this ride is--but leave out all the 'Armageddon' stuff. Thank you." More to come.
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby cfc » Sun Oct 20, 2013 8:30 am

Yes, I have some more stuff. Thank you for your patience. Why, I'll even throw in a bit of Fun Spot America, if you like.
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I understand that at least some of these games used to be over in Amity, but were re-themed to the Simpsons and moved over here.
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"Ex-x-x-x-cellent!"
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Well, when in Springfield, you may as well visit Krustyland. (I do prefer this ride to Back to the Future.)
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Oh my god, dreams really do come true at Krustyland!
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Screw Harry Potter! Universal needs to build this attraction now!
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Disney owns the rights to the presidents, vice presidents, and Speakers of the House, so Krusty was left with this.
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Has Krusty already forgotten about how Sideshow Bob has tried to murder him in the past? (Well, we all believe in redemption, don't we?)
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Hmm--it appears that something new is being added.
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Walking Dead nerds!
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Hey, Bruce! I didn't remove your ride! Don't take your anger out on me!
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You know, this seems like a lot of trouble just to put in a Smokey and the Bandit attraction.
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I'm not sure if the new Breakfast Club simulator will be worth it, either--unless you get to punch Emilio Estevez and Anthony Michael Hall in the face.
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I can't believe they took out Jaws to install a Smokey and the Bandit/Breakfast Club attraction, but I guess we all need to get on with our lives.
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Maybe a visit to Moe's will cheer me up.
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Yes, the dank atmosphere and pervasive funk of failure are making me feel better already.
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"You said it, friend . . . bu-u-u-u-u-u rp!"
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The pink donut was pretty good.
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OK, two old citizens of Springfield getting down to Bart Simpson's rap is more terrifying than anything you'll see during Horror Night.
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Yay! Still the best ride here!
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Super cool Spidey shades.
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We also rode the Diagon Alley Backstage Tour.
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Yes, we did, indeed, visit the Whizzing World of Harry Potter.
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The single-rider line for "Mega-Bench: The Ride" has been re-routed since I last visited.
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Back to the Studio for a Duff with my pal, Surly.
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"Hah! I can play the PR game every bit as well as Optimus Prime! Greetings, Earth insects! Those who grovel the best will die last! I think that went well."
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Well, may as well snag a couple of credits while I'm in town. (I skipped the kiddie coaster, though.)
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Such a deal!
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This is a pretty good ride.
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It's GCI's version of an old-fashioned out-and-back, with some 90-degree goodness thrown in.
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Two trains at once! I rule!
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Once again, America is safe--but for how long? That's all. Thanks for reading.
Last edited by cfc on Sun Oct 20, 2013 7:51 pm.
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby simon8899 » Sun Oct 20, 2013 8:49 am

As said before I think Universal did a great job on Springfield but they should have made Moe's Bar a little darker - it looks way too bright.

Did you also visit Wheelie that day?

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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby cfc » Sun Oct 20, 2013 9:01 am

^Nope--just White Lightning and Freedom Flyer (not that into flat rides).
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby larrygator » Sun Oct 20, 2013 10:17 am

Emilio Estevez's character would never punch Michael Anthony Hall's character in the punch. His weapon of choice was duct tape. Can't wait for that Breakfast Club simulator. I haven't forgotten about you, Breakfast Club crew.

Chuck, I know you didn't ride it , but do you have any pictures of the kiddie coaster for the Park Index?
Last edited by larrygator on Sun Oct 20, 2013 10:21 am.
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby cfc » Sun Oct 20, 2013 10:33 am

^Sorry, Larry. We were only at Fun Spot for about 20 minutes or so, and I never walked over to the kiddie coaster to check it out.
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby Erik Johnson » Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:16 am

I did get a picture if the sign Larry. Sorry Chuxk, I guess we should have done the Minion ride first. I had no idea the line would get so long so quickly. It did not get below 75 mins after the first hour.
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Last edited by Erik Johnson on Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:19 am.
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby cfc » Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:21 am

^No worries, Erik. I'm indifferent toward Despicable Me, and it was worth it to take multiple rides on Transformers.
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby ernierocker » Mon Oct 21, 2013 11:03 am

^Great seeing you again, Chuck. The Epcot day seemed like ages ago but it was an amazing day.
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Re: Photo TR: Chuck's Epic Orlando Weekend

Postby Mrlittle » Mon Oct 21, 2013 11:21 am

I need to get back to Universal soon to check out the new Springfield area. Fun TR.
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