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Eddie Sotto's take on the current state of the parks

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ClemsonTigger

Naturally Grumpy
Just speaking for myself, but when I talk about bringing Epcot Center back, I am not talking about the original rides. I'm talking about what FW represented when the park opened. And that is the view that innovation and free markets create improvements to our quality of life. Nowadays we are told corporations are the great evil in the land and only pollute and plot ways to take money. :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:


This would not only "placate" the traditionalists, these type fun and informative views of the future would thrill the "masses".

I agree with your statement wholeheartedly, because for me Epcot Center not only stood for that, but was an upgrade of the amazing '64 Worlds Fair that I had the pleasure of experiencing. That exhibition had as Eddie said earlier, Spirituality. It's our inner will that pushes us to seek the next Horizon , and from the beginning I saw EPCOT Center as a continuation of that. It's not Horizons or WoM, but the bigger heart. I think he also hit the nail on the head as to why Illuminations affects people so viscerally (but subconsciously).

It may not be as much Disney or Imagineers or CM's loosing that sense of spirituality, but rather too many of the guests have. In an attempt to cater to that population, it appears that Disney is in turn loosing some of its...

For us fanboyz then, crying for the return of Horizons, or Toad or EPCOT Center is not so much for that item as it is using that item to represent the larger spirituality.

In thinking about what Eddie discussed about that warmth or primal "magic" that seems to be part of Illuminations.....what will happen to Epcot if/when Illuminations is replaced as many seem to be wanting? Will they be able to integrate that spiritual/tribal/earthy essence into a new show or will it be just fireworks and colors? Now I've really gotten myself depressed...:(
 

jt04

Well-Known Member
I agree with your statement wholeheartedly, because for me Epcot Center not only stood for that, but was an upgrade of the amazing '64 Worlds Fair that I had the pleasure of experiencing. That exhibition had as Eddie said earlier, Spirituality. It's our inner will that pushes us to seek the next Horizon , and from the beginning I saw EPCOT Center as a continuation of that. It's not Horizons or WoM, but the bigger heart. I think he also hit the nail on the head as to why Illuminations affects people so viscerally (but subconciously).

It may not be as much Disney or Imagineers or CM's loosing that sense of spirituality, but rather too many of the guests have. In an attempt to cater to that population, it appears that Disney is in turn loosing some of its...

For us fanboyz then, crying for the return of Horizons, or Toad or EPCOT Center is not so much for that item as it is using that item to represent the larger spirituality.

In thinking about what Eddie discussed about that warmth or primal "magic" that seems to be part of Illuminations.....what will happen to Epcot if/when Illuminations is replaced as many seem to be wanting? Will they be able to integrate that spiritual/tribal/earthy essence into a new show or will it be just fireworks and colors? Now I've really gotten myself depressed...:(

I think we might be comparing two different things here. Anything "spiritually" based is by it's nature universal, at least by my definition. FW was uniquely American in that it represented, more or less, the "American dream" of invention, innovation and optimism and how great ideas bubble up "organically" to meet societal wants and needs. It was a celebration of enterprise which is not a universal concept though I think we would be better off if it was.

World Showcase and especially Illuminations represents something far different IMO. I have never really "gotten" Illumnations because I find it's message potentially threatening. It reminds me of "It's a Small World" for adults. And while the idea of a "world without borders" is romantic and even possibly noble, I think it is very naive. Just as our way of life has been protected by the concept of seperation of powers, so in a sense does individual nation-states hedge against the potential danger of a fascist one world system. I'd much rather have a presentation that celebrates the universal (and spiritual) desire of the natural human inclination to be free to achieve an individuals goals and dreams. I don't think that is what Illuminations does but I might be missing the message of the show as it is both difficult to see and hear. I disagree with you on the point the show is "warm". But it is pretty.

Perhaps someone can explain the show to me because I know it has hard core fans. I just don't see why. :shrug:
 

Eddie Sotto

Premium Member
It reminds me of "It's a Small World" for adults. And while the idea of a "world without borders" is romantic and even possibly noble, I think it is very naive. Just as our way of life has been protected by the concept of seperation of powers, so in a sense does individual nation-states hedge against the potential danger of a fascist one world system.

Wow. Mankind on it's own has never been able to establish world peace that lasts for long, so I guess this is a naive dream which is what Disney does best. Keeps it all in the simple eyes of a child. I'm the wrong one to ask. FWIW-I believe we are headed toward an 8th world power as depicted by the prophet Daniel, So who knows? (That's another thread for another board or PM's!).

Right now, I'm with you.. IASW for Adults with lots of great music. Not a bad thing. Your insights are really great.
 

figgyfan

New Member
I think the DVC concept sounds awesome. I also like the idea of an EPCOT or Universe of Energy overhaul.
 

RSoxNo1

Well-Known Member
Just speaking for myself, but when I talk about bringing Epcot Center back, I am not talking about the original rides. I'm talking about what FW represented when the park opened. And that is the view that innovation and free markets create improvements to our quality of life. Nowadays we are told corporations are the great evil in the land and only pollute and plot ways to take money. :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:

Here is th best example I can think of and one of the easiest. Rewrite the storyline of Test Track to be a test of self navigating vehicle technology which is at least 20 years away but is fun to think about. It would be easy to have a story where the inevitable "testing" goes wrong and the vehicle computer decides it's bored with the testing and goes on a joy ride, with guests in tow. So a fun, futuristic technology is introduced in a creative way and it's also a thrill ride. It also could have humor by poking fun and making "inside jokes" about Test Tracks original problems.

This would not only "placate" the traditionalists, these type fun and informative views of the future would thrill the "masses".

I think the idea of classic Epcot center rides doesn't meche well with Disney's current "Something goes wrong" approach. Even in your proposal they'd be hard pressed to find a sponsor for an attraction that makes use of a faulty future technology.

I do like the idea of using the attraction to showcase a future technology much in the same way that Horizons and World of Motion did, I just think the break needs to come away from that "Something goes wrong" approach.

Test Track is educational, albeit in a very sugarcoated way. I think the problem that people have with it is that it has remained unchanged for 10 years, and the educational aspect of it has grown stale, much like the educational aspects of Horizons and World of Motion grew stale by the early to mid 90s.

I think part of the problem with educational attractions is that their shelf life is shorter than a ride driven by story, thrills, or gimmicks.
 

MousDad

New Member
I think part of the problem with educational attractions is that their shelf life is shorter than a ride driven by story, thrills, or gimmicks.

Bingo. It's why the current Epcot model (incorporating the spirit of the original, expositional attractions within the better-faring storytelling/immersive setting) is better.

Some will call it "dumbing down" the attraction to the public, but I prefer to think of it as "smarting up" the public to the attraction.
 

hpyhnt 1000

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Bingo. It's why the current Epcot model (incorporating the spirit of the original, expositional attractions within the better-faring storytelling/immersive setting) is better.

Some will call it "dumbing down" the attraction to the public, but I prefer to think of it as "smarting up" the public to the attraction.

I like the way you spin that. :lol:
 

Eddie Sotto

Premium Member
I hope you are enjoying this thread as much as I am. There have been some really great discussions and for the most part staying on topic. Thanks to all!
 

EPCOT Explorer

New Member
Just speaking for myself, but when I talk about bringing Epcot Center back, I am not talking about the original rides. I'm talking about what FW represented when the park opened. And that is the view that innovation and free markets create improvements to our quality of life. Nowadays we are told corporations are the great evil in the land and only pollute and plot ways to take money. :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:

Here is th best example I can think of and one of the easiest. Rewrite the storyline of Test Track to be a test of self navigating vehicle technology which is at least 20 years away but is fun to think about. It would be easy to have a story where the inevitable "testing" goes wrong and the vehicle computer decides it's bored with the testing and goes on a joy ride, with guests in tow. So a fun, futuristic technology is introduced in a creative way and it's also a thrill ride. It also could have humor by poking fun and making "inside jokes" about Test Tracks original problems.

This would not only "placate" the traditionalists, these type fun and informative views of the future would thrill the "masses".
Well said, jt!:lol::D I agree with you....Odd feeling.;)

I think Eddie's outline of what FW was supposed to be (until The Living Seas), is exactly what I miss about the old FW.

I never got totally immersed in any of the attractions, but gosh darn, were they fun to sit through. Going through era after era of transportation in World of Motion was fun! Seeing what my future car might look like was cool. Even Horizons, as awesome as it was, never put you in the story. You were a bystander listening to what the "hosts" wanted to talk about. Almost like you were eavesdropping into their conversation about the future.

It was like going to a World's Fair. Now it's just kind of, let's see what we can "wow" you with in this pavilion.
Exactly. And in that, it was immersive. It was a showcase of the possible, the optimistic and ultimately, the future! You did the discovering on your own...Not having it pushed at you, like they want to do now, in a "Discovery Park" or "DiscoveryLand". Keep it moving forward... Taking us along for the ride is what made it fantastic. Entertain us...Enlighten us...Inspire us. Maybe the education part of the IEE should be enlighten, after all. Introduce us to a great thread of knowledge.

That's what EPCOT was...and easily could be again.:eek:
 

EPCOT Explorer

New Member
I agree with your statement wholeheartedly, because for me Epcot Center not only stood for that, but was an upgrade of the amazing '64 Worlds Fair that I had the pleasure of experiencing. That exhibition had as Eddie said earlier, Spirituality. It's our inner will that pushes us to seek the next Horizon , and from the beginning I saw EPCOT Center as a continuation of that. It's not Horizons or WoM, but the bigger heart. I think he also hit the nail on the head as to why Illuminations affects people so viscerally (but subconciously).

It may not be as much Disney or Imagineers or CM's loosing that sense of spirituality, but rather too many of the guests have. In an attempt to cater to that population, it appears that Disney is in turn loosing some of its...

For us fanboyz then, crying for the return of Horizons, or Toad or EPCOT Center is not so much for that item as it is using that item to represent the larger spirituality.

In thinking about what Eddie discussed about that warmth or primal "magic" that seems to be part of Illuminations.....what will happen to Epcot if/when Illuminations is replaced as many seem to be wanting? Will they be able to integrate that spiritual/tribal/earthy essence into a new show or will it be just fireworks and colors? Now I've really gotten myself depressed...:(
So then what is the solution? I think what you are asking for is impossible...We can't detach from our memories. It's still possible for us to be wow-ed,and appreciate new colors, and new music, as you say in a new IllumiNations, but do it so that it feels familiar. Do it so it feels like home. Perhaps that's why Horizons was so well loved. It was COP Part II.:shrug:
I hope you are enjoying this thread as much as I am. There have been some really great discussions and for the most part staying on topic. Thanks to all!

YES!:lol: I LOVE this thread.
 

ClemsonTigger

Naturally Grumpy
I agree about the permanence of memories...but also know that memories are wonderful in shedding their rough edges and getting brighter and more perfect with time.

As I remember my trip to New York in 64, I don't suggest trying to loose memories. What I was trying to say about Horizons however is not to forget it, but that the "fixation" with it's loss is less about actual Horizons and more using Horizons as a focus of the loss and change of many things from 15 years ago. It's easier to focus your feeling of loss or nostalgia on a specific thing, person or place than it is say for the year of 1982 or 1990.
 

mandstaft

Well-Known Member
"FWIW-I believe we are headed toward an 8th world power as depicted by the prophet Daniel, So who knows? (That's another thread for another board or PM's!)."

Couldn't agree more, Eddie. Couldn't agree more...
 

HMF

Well-Known Member
so the thing to watch for is "change for it's own sake", so that had to balance itself out.
.
A lot of times Disney will use the "Walt wanted change" defense to defend any decision made by WDI whether it's an improvement or not.
 

Eddie Sotto

Premium Member
A lot of times Disney will use the "Walt wanted change" defense to defend any decision made by WDI whether it's an improvement or not.

What they say happens to be true, Walt was about changing things that didn't work. But what are the motives for change? A better show or more revenue? Was it an improvement or a desecration? The eternal debate. That's the hard part as an Imagineer. If the mandate was to keep it pristine and not do anything it would be easy, but it's not. The Walt mandate is to run the gauntlet of change by keeping the park conceptually fresh while never betraying the core ideals of why it worked in the first place. So the drill is that you need to really understand exactly why people liked something before you "improve" it. It can be done, and as you point out, sometimes better than others.
 

EPCOT Explorer

New Member
I agree about the permanence of memories...but also know that memories are wonderful in shedding their rough edges and getting brighter and more perfect with time.

As I remember my trip to New York in 64, I don't suggest trying to loose memories. What I was trying to say about Horizons however is not to forget it, but that the "fixation" with it's loss is less about actual Horizons and more using Horizons as a focus of the loss and change of many things from 15 years ago. It's easier to focus your feeling of loss or nostalgia on a specific thing, person or place than it is say for the year of 1982 or 1990.

I fail to see what you are saying. I know about nostalgia...Trust me, I suffer (?) from it!:lol:

I don't fixate on the loss of Horizons, I fizate on the loss of it's spirit. There are guests out there today, that would love it, don't get to make those memories, and guests who miss it. If they would have replaced it with something akin to it, that produced the same feelings, it would be less of an issue.

(They had a chance....SSE07)
 

Eddie Sotto

Premium Member
I fail to see what you are saying. I know about nostalgia...Trust me, I suffer (?) from it!:lol:

I don't fixate on the loss of Horizons, I fizate on the loss of it's spirit. There are guests out there today, that would love it, don't get to make those memories, and guests who miss it. If they would have replaced it with something akin to it, that produced the same feelings, it would be less of an issue.

(They had a chance....SSE07)

Well said. Horizons had an hopeful optimism to it that if not injected in the proper dosage comes off as naive. Do people still dream of living in those spacey environments? I'm not sure. but you are right in that you want to conjure up the feel but with updated dreams that people today long for.

I think it goes back to the basic question of hope for the future. When you are young anything is possible, as we get older we become more jaded and as we look back, we realize we're not going to be the Astronaut or Rock Star or whatever we thought we were going to be. When I was a kid, I drank the Disney "Kool Aid" and believed "Progress City" was just a matter of time. I try to keep that naive openness alive and not close those doors (look at Richard Branson!) and if the opportunity arises, making a new "Progress City" happen.



PS (My first company was actually called "Progress City") It still could be! Here's an article on it. Never give up.

http://gdlarchi.com/bulletin/view.p...earchField=f_title&v_searchWord=&v_sortField=
 

ClemsonTigger

Naturally Grumpy
Well said. Horizons had an hopeful optimism to it that if not injected in the proper dosage comes off as naive. Do people still dream of living in those spacey environments? I'm not sure. but you are right in that you want to conjure up the feel but with updated dreams that people today long for.

I think it goes back to the basic question of hope for the future. When you are young anything is possible, as we get older we become more jaded and as we look back, we realize we're not going to be the Astronaut or Rock Star or whatever we thought we were going to be. When I was a kid, I drank the Disney "Kool Aid" and believed "Progress City" was just a matter of time. i try to the best of my own ability to keep that openness alive and not close those doors (look at Richard Branson!) and if the opportunity arises, making a new "Progress City" happen.


PS (My first company was actually called "Progress City") It still could be! Here's an article on it. Never give up.

http://gdlarchi.com/bulletin/view.p...earchField=f_title&v_searchWord=&v_sortField=

OK...now I'm depressed....:(

:animwink:


I agree though, as the pressures, realities and setbacks of the real world beat you down....it is easy to get jaded and very pessimistic. You do realize that while they do happen for some, that your dreams of being an astronaut or fireman or football star just ain't gonna happen...if you can get over that and take stock of the things you have accomplished (that were probably never close to the original radar screen), you can start to come around again to a different kind of optimism and magic....

I still see pure wonder and embracing of "perfection" in the eyes of Children at Disney. There are generations that don't know about Horizons or Toad or AI or even a pink cake castle...who's memories are about the awesomeness of Soarin', the thrill of Tot or the best shows at Disney starring JoJo or Bear or any number of characters I know nothing about. To them Pixar IS animation, and so be it. Being able to share their joy just might be enough, and when they are writing on this site in 15 years about how they miss Stitch or Test Track or the Big hat that was Studios to them....well...guess I could burst into a verse of Circle of Life or something...:eek:
 

EPCOT Explorer

New Member
Well said. Horizons had an hopeful optimism to it that if not injected in the proper dosage comes off as naive. Do people still dream of living in those spacey environments? I'm not sure. but you are right in that you want to conjure up the feel but with updated dreams that people today long for.

I think it goes back to the basic question of hope for the future. When you are young anything is possible, as we get older we become more jaded and as we look back, we realize we're not going to be the Astronaut or Rock Star or whatever we thought we were going to be. When I was a kid, I drank the Disney "Kool Aid" and believed "Progress City" was just a matter of time. I try to keep that naive openness alive and not close those doors (look at Richard Branson!) and if the opportunity arises, making a new "Progress City" happen.



PS (My first company was actually called "Progress City") It still could be! Here's an article on it. Never give up.

http://gdlarchi.com/bulletin/view.p...earchField=f_title&v_searchWord=&v_sortField=

Thank you!:wave:


Honestly, I think they do. Just look at the "space" ending for SSE07. The Jetsons with your face on it floating out in Space. Maybe if they emphasized the methods to get us there and the acuall possibility of it happening instead of it being "fantasy", we would feel more akin to SSE and be talking about Horizons less.:shrug:

And YES!:lol: I so believe in the Progress City! Still do...I think that if we use technology in the proper way, and not the way it's being abused, it is possible...(whole nother thread here...)

I even think that some of it has come true today.:shrug:
 

Eddie Sotto

Premium Member
I still see pure wonder and embracing of "perfection" in the eyes of Children at Disney.... and when they are writing on this site in 15 years about how they miss Stitch or Test Track or the Big hat that was Studios to them....well...guess I could burst into a verse of Circle of Life or something...:eek:

You make a good point. Sometimes its the things we grow up with regardless of quality that we end up loving and missing. I had designed my first ride at Knott's and when it opened it fell so short of what I wanted it to be, I sat on a bench and quietly cried. My wife thought I was nuts as I had been doing all-nighters for weeks trying to finish it. The show was not almost nonexistent and nothing worked. Embarrassing. I thought my ride designing career would be over in one shot. The ride system was fun and that made it popular, but that's it. 20 years later, I get mail about how much people remember loving that ride ("I can't believe they took it out!") because it was from when they were kids and it was fun. I guess in death, the "Soap Box Racers" gets better with time.

Look at this micechat thread.LOL!
http://micechat.com/forums/yesterland-discussions/41945-yester-knotts.html

Original TV ad.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09Pky08HRSY&feature=related
 
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