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Archive for the ‘disney world’ Category

Oh, It’s Not A Ride

I love Animal Kingdom, but it is TOTALLY a half-day park. Of course, we haven’t been since they opened Expedition:Everest, so maybe after you wait in line for 2 hours for that ride, you might have reason to stay in Animal Kingdom for more than 4.5 hours.

For years there has been a persistant rumour that there would be a land of fantasy creatures added–so you could visit unicorns, dragons and other mythical beasts. I still think that’s the coolest idea, and I like to keep the rumour alive whenever possible in hopes that the Jungian Collective Unconscious will force the WDW suits to go ahead with the project.

Today on one of my favourite Disney blogs I saw that a new feature is slated to open in the Animal Kingdom. I was excited, because the NotAZoo needs some more non-zoo attractions. So I was happy, initially, to read about Yak & Yeti.

Until I realised it’s just another restaurant/store. Come on, WDW suits! You guys are opening 10 stores and restaurants for every ride you either add or refurbish. It’s getting stupid.

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Big News this morning for Harry Potter fans, fools and their money.
Universal Studios is set to open a Harry Potter theme park by 2009.

Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. and Universal Orlando Resort plan to open The Wizarding World of Harry Potter within Universal’s Islands of Adventure theme park in 2009, Tom Williams, chairman and CEO of Universal Parks and Resorts, announced Thursday on TODAY. The “theme park within a theme park” is the first fully immersive Harry Potter-themed environment based on the best-selling books by J.K. Rowling and the blockbuster feature films.

Can you imagine how this would go over if Harry were to die in the last book? Not very well, I’m sure. Death does not sell roller-coaster tickets.

Will this finally get me into the Universal Studios themepark, and away from Disney World for even one precious day? I doubt it, but we’ll see.

The good news for us Disney fans is that this announcement, coupled with the fanatical success of Expedition Everest, may finally get the much-rumoured Bald Mountain coaster off the drawing board. Disney World is not a coaster-park destination per se, but they do pride themselves in having a very popular roller coaster “Mountain Range.” Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad are the flakes of hot pepper on the Magic Kingdom Pizza. Disney Cast Members, fanatics and hopefuls have been tossing around rumours of a fourth “mountain” for awhile now. The Night on Bald Mountain coaster takes its name from that segment in the original Fantasia, and is said to be a villain-themed coaster. We’ve heard this rumour kicked around for at least 10 years now. I’ve personally heard it from at least four cast members at the parks and more than a dozen on-line Disneyphiles who claim to be current or former cast members.

So the news today looks as though the rumours of death for Harry Potter AND the Bald Mountain coaster were greatly exaggerated.

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Big Orange Michael has a post today that reminded me of a rant I’ve been meaning to have. Since I’m having a krep day, I figured now is as good a time as any.

According to an article in this morning’s Wall Street Journal, TV networks are courting bloggers for some much-needed publicity for their shows.

My first, big question is–why in the world isn’t there a message in my in-box from one of the myriad of networks? I will totally and completely sell-out to you if you’ll send me screeners of things or swag…So, any shows that want to reach out to me (esp. Lost, Battlestar Galactica, 24) and have me shill for you…drop me a line!

And here we have the problem with Viral Marketing versus Opinion. To me the true value of having a blog is in having a platform where your opinions and experiences can be accessed by anyone with a search tool. Viral Marketing compromises the worth of a blogger’s opinion. In my opinion.

My first real brush with Viral Marketing came from the Relive the Magic DVD folks. One day, seemingly out of nowhere, I started seeing Disney World bloggers and podcasters just raving about these wonderful DVDs. Just imagine! For only $250 you too could have the entire Walt Disney World universe on DVD, to revisit whenever you like. Now, these were bloggers, reviewers and podcasters I trusted. I trusted them because I’d been reading them and listening to their shows for years. So, as a combined birthday/anniversary present we bought a set last year. And they were awful. Come to find out, nearly everyone who recommended them did so because they received up to a FIFTY PERCENT CUT of all sales which came from their readers. In short, they were paid more than as much as $100 a pop to recommend a terrible product, so they did it.

I no longer listen to one of those podcasters and have stopped going to most of those blogs for that exact reason. They blew their trust with me.

::Ooops. I hit enter, then the phone rang. Bloggus Interruptus. Back to the tale::

So anyway, I think it’s great when bloggers’ opinions are taken seriously by the media. And I think it’s great that if you’re really a fan of something and blog well about it that the Powers That Be will occasionally send you a t-shirt or DVD out of gratitude. But it’s dangerous to rave about something that isn’t good just because you’re paid for it. I’ve had more than one occasion where I really liked something and wrote a raving blog review about it–only to find that later I didn’t care for it as time went on. My new policy is try something for an extended period of time before praising it here. If it’s a restaurant I’ll eat there more than once. If it’s a show, I’ll watch it more than once. If it’s a book I’ll only praise it once I make it to the end. Some writers just can’t sustain. (Lincoln Child, I’m lookin’ at you, kid.)

In the past I’ve learned that people take blog opinions very seriously. So I’m trying to be more serious about what opinions I put out here. And they are not for sale.

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Why Lileks Rocks

Because he gets it.

having spent four days in the realm of the Mouse, you could cut my wrists and I’d bleed Disney Kool-Aid.

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Tilt Shift Disney

mkts.jpg

I’ve been going ga-ga over the Tilt-Shift pictures I’ve seen everyplace. It wasn’t until Chris Wage said yesterday that it could be done in Photoshop that I realized I, too, could make “tilt-shift” fakes.

I’ve been playing with it on some old pictures. And of course, what better place to “fake” than Disney World?!

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