Written by Gregg Condon
It's a new month, which means there's new complaints about Disney.
Last month it was about Boo Bash, and that it's a "lesser event" than Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party was, but also more expensive.
And then what happened? Tickets went on sale, and there was a multi-hour wait to purchase them.
Before that it was the cost of 1-day Disneyland tickets.
And then what happened? There was a multi-hour wait to get tickets the first day they were available. And since, Disneyland has been able to bring in crowds without popular Annual Passes.
And this week, the newest Disney Villain is up charged Fastpasses at Disneyland Paris, and the fear that they may make their way to the states.
And what will happen if they do? People will still go, they will pay the money, and still complain about it.
I know I may sound like a broken record here, but if something you supposedly love makes you THIS unhappy, why are you still spending your hard earned money going there?
There are plenty of other theme parks that will take your money, that are a supposed better deal than Disney. Oh, but wait, those parks aren't worthy of your money, right?
I would have a LOT more respect, and listen to the voices of the people crying on Twitter about this latest Disney slight if they had changed their visiting and spending habits at Disney because of all this supposed "evil corporate" stuff. But they haven't. And they won't. And Disney knows it.
Disney doesn't care about what you say on Twitter, on your Blog (especially this Blog), or on YouTube. They care about the $$ you spend in the parks. They're a corporation. And the OVERWHELMING majority of people who visit their parks have no idea what a "DisTwitter" is, or what 99% of Disney Blogs are.
In 2012 we had Disneyland AP's. We had them every year from 1998 to then. In 2012 we had 2 kids in High School, with all of those extra-curricular activities that came with it. And we just didn't have the time to go to Disneyland, and thus couldn't justify the cost of the parks.
From Jan 2012 to Dec 2019 we went to Disneyland 4 times. Generally once every 18 months or so. And guess what, we absolutely LOVED it. Each visit was special.
In Dec 2019 my wife and I got the FlexPass. And we used them 4 times prior to the parks shutting down. And guess what, we absolutely LOVED it. Each visit was special.
Maybe some people need a Disney break. Maybe they need to remember why they love Disney so much. To be reminded of what they're so angry about all the time.
Disney isn't supposed to make you angry, it's supposed to make you happy. And if the Disney corporation is continually doing things that make you angry then there is a solution for that. And it starts not by yelling on Twitter, but by closing your wallet.
That's the only language corporations understand.
As for the "up charged Fastpasses". If and when they do come to the US parks, I will use them. Because my time is valuable, my leisure time even more so.
I've used similar type systems at Six Flags Parks, Cedar Fair Parks, Universal Parks, MaxPass at Disneyland and at Countless Halloween events.
Yet I don't see anybody complaining about any of those. Why is Disney so different?
For me, I'm going to continue to visit, because I don't let these things impact me. It's not "rose colored glasses" or "blind devotion". For me it's simply remembering why I love Disney, and the amazing times I've had there, and the amazing times to come.
Just watch the Luigi's Rollickin' Roadsters POV below. It's a silly ride. Listen to how much fun we had on it.
I go to theme parks to escape the world for a bit. It's my hobby. I started this blog as an extension of that hobby. If us being "not negative" means that we're accused of being blind to what's really going on with the corporation, so be it.
And don't let anybody tell you any different ...
Written by Gregg Condon
Originally Published 4/19/17
Look, I get it. Your favorite park is Disney, or it's Universal, or it's Cedar Point, or it's a Six Flags park. You think Disney is too crowded (OK it might be) or that Universal uses too many Screenz (maybe they do) and Cedar Fair and Six Flags don't theme their coasters (what's the point when they're going 70 mph). So for ALL of these reasons and more, you'll only visit one theme park chain.
But why? It's probably the greatest time in the history of theme parks to be a theme park fan. They are all trying to one-up each other and it's AMAZING.
In the 90's and early 00's we had the great coaster wars. Amusement Parks from, well really Illinois to New Jersey were trying to one-up each other with taller and faster coasters (California and the West Coast somehow got left out of this). But that didn't do anything for fans of Disney or Universal parks.
Disney was the king of the themed environment for decades. Not only themed rides, but lands around those rides. A recreation of New Orleans for a Pirates themed ride. Old west themed lands. Castles. World's of "tomorrow" that never really came to fruition (but that's a whole other article).
But the fact is, Disney was the top. Even after Universal Studios Florida opened Universal was really second fiddle to Disney and it seemed that's where they were destined to stay.
And then in the late 90's and into 2001 Disney built a couple of parks that weren't quite as successful as they probably should have been, because Disney was trying to save some money. Disney was always the "first offer" when it came to franchises to create themed environments for (yes, even Potter) but they were famously hesitant to give up any control when it came to the final say over what was in their parks.
And it is for that reason JK Rowling found the perfect partner to re-create her Wizarding World of Harry Potter ... and then everything changed.
On May 10, 2010 the Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened at Islands of Adventure and thus started the theme park war that we now see ourselves in.
No longer would off-the-shelf mouse coasters themed to Dinosaur parking lots or twisty roads in the Santa Monica Mountains be enough. Swing rides that looked like oranges, gone. Special effects shows featuring crappy war movies, gone.
But the impact wasn't just for Disney. It opened up a whole new era for Universal Studios across the world which has probably benefited the Hollywood Park more than any other.
Just look at the timeline for Disney and Universal just since Wizarding World opened:
Unknown opening as of this time: Tron Coaster (MK), Guardians of the Galaxy (Epcot), Super Nintendo World (USH)
And these are just the highlights, so much has been done at all of these parks since 2010. And we're just getting started.
In addition to these attractions at Disney and Universal, the other park chains are starting to catch on to themed rides and environments. We've seen the Justice League rides at Six Flags parks. Coasters with themed elements like Mystic Timbers at Kings Island, Cobra's Curse at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and Verbolten at Busch Gardens Williamsburg.
The complete re-do of Ghost Town at Knott's Berry Farm. Interactive dark rides at Legoland. Even smaller parks like Glenwood Caverns are opening themed rides that fit their parks.
And of course for the coaster fans we've seen the complete re-imagining of classic wooden coasters thanks to Rocky Mountain Construction, the continued success of B&M Hyper Coasters and the infusion of newer manufacturers (to the US) like MACK and Gerstlauer. Parks like Lagoon are even building their own coasters.
As I said, it's an AMAZING time to be a Theme Park Fan.
Sure, there are always there are those who will find fault with anything. Guardians of the Galaxy Tower, Volcano Bay, World of Pandora, Soarin' Around The World, duplication of rides at Six Flags. There is not ONE attraction opening up at any park that is beyond critique. No matter the chain, theme, ride system, fan-base ... inevitably somebody out there is going to hate it, or at least give the perception that they hate it.
But now that the theme park war is almost a decade old it shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, with all of the rumors going around with Tron coming to Magic Kingdom, Guardians and Ratatouille coming to EPCOT, NintendoLand coming to Universal, more Potter coming, Marvel and of course Star Wars Land there is going to be more choice than ever.
For those of us that can look beyond what company is creating what environment and enjoy lots of different things at different parks, it's absolutely amazing. For those that continue to support only one company while still criticizing everything that company does you are likely going to be continually disappointed.
IP's aren't going anywhere. Screenz aren't going anywhere. Overlays of existing rides to fit what's new and hip aren't going anywhere. Synergy is where it's at. And why not. When you have franchises that are pulling in BILLIONS of dollars every year at the Box Office it's no surprise that corporations want to capitalize on that with attractions and most importantly, merchandising.
So you can either continue to be disappointed with the highest quality attractions theme parks have ever created or just go with the flow and enjoy the ride ...
If you've been a fan of this site for awhile, first, thank you, but second, you'll know we have no sympathy for "Disney Complainers". You know the type.
The ones who despite having open theme parks in their back yard will complain about this not being centered.
The placement of this is mildly humorous at best, not something that needs to be endlessly mocked on social media or that you need to spend 2 hours complaining about on YouTube to get hits.
And I say this as somebody who has OCD about these kinds of things.
So I figured I'd be nice and share some things you can spend your disposable income and free time on, since Disney so obviously doesn't care about you and your want of things perfectly centered (and the other million things you always complain about).
Seriously, you're in Florida, go to the beach. Learn to surf. Ron Jon offers Surf Lessons for $65 an hour. And then once you know how to surf, the beach is free and stuff. Although you'll probably complain about something like too many fish in the water or something.
Speaking of beach stuff, The Dive Station in Orlando offers Scuba lessons. Maybe you can finally find nemo?
NASCAR Driving Experience
Physical activity not your thing? Sitting in a car your thing? Most NASCAR tracks have driving experiences. Check them all out! Here is the info for the one at Daytona. We promise, you'll still get to compare it to Tomorrowland Speedway.
National Parks Pass
Still want something to do with "parks", still need a "pass" of some kind? Look no further than our national parks. And you'd be doing something constructive with that hard earned money. You think 4 theme parks is a lot? How about 133 destinations your pass is good at.
You obviously LOVE to take pictures of stuff. Maybe branch out and find something else to take pictures of. Architecture. Nature. Cracks in the ground. It's all there for the taking! Literally!
Maybe you're tired of taking pictures of things, maybe paint them instead?
Ok, you may have to wait a bit for this one, but concerts are freaking awesome. Follow The Grateful Dead on a nationwide tour. You'll meet some interesting people that will surely be memorable.
Find your local Starbucks and finally get started on your great American novel.
You're a Disney fan, so maybe you're not into high thrills, but maybe you are. Jump out of a perfectly good airplane! We promise, the first time you have something to complain about with this hobby you won't have time to actually complain about it. Tampa even has a Parachute Rigging and Sales company.
Have that itch to flip things on eBay? Think Disney has the market cornered on it? Well think again. Air Jordan's. Purses. Used clothing. You can totally scam people and have nothing to do with Disney. It's still possible to make your dreams come true!
Other Theme Parks
You think you find a lot of things to complain about at Disney? Oh boy. Let us introduce you to the plethora of other theme parks out there. Coasters with exposed steel, front of the line passes you have to actually pay for, hotels not within walking distance to the park. Oh, and most of them aren't even open every day. (seriously, don't do this one)
This one definitely is the one for those of you who like to just stay home and rant online. But instead of putting those fingers to work on your keyboards, put them to work on a guitar fret. Or better yet, get an actual keyboard and become the next keyboard superstar. Even better still, get a Keytar!!
Still feel the need to take pictures around man-made things? Did you know there are entire cities out there just for the exploring? And those cities sometimes even have hidden (backstage!) things to find?
Jim Cantore can't chase those hurricane's forever. That could be you!!! You can warn all the people who still appreciate and love Disney to stay away from the parks.
We've saved the best for last. How about just going to Disney, being appreciative that you're alive at the same time that Disney Parks exist, maybe have some FUN in the parks (and online). I promise you, it's a much more fulfilling existence even if it may cut into your ad revenue a bit.