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Jungle Cruise Re-Imagining

jeanericuser001

Active Member
I stand corrected.
Yeah alas this is just one of several people who have been pushing for years on this whole stereotyping issue. The splash mountain push was just the latest one which finally built up enough controversy to force disney to make a change. Its similar to what universal use to get all the time with their shows. HHN was particularly known for being a popular target for those looking to get attention by complaining about the humor. Inevitably though they managed to force universal to make changes. Rocky horror got the axe and then later on bill and ted. Now all they have is a flash mob show with dancers and music but none of the great comedy we use to get all the time. BG did the same not to long later with Fiends though later on they brought it back by popular demand. Sea world had a lot of great shows using animal performers but now they are slowly getting the axe. Honestly this problem is becoming so wide spread with people constantly creating a cause just to get attention and put "stamp of approval" on how the theme park should do things. If that kid had actually cared about disney at all he would be more focused on enjoying the attractions instead of not getting the "title" he wanted.
 
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Animaniac93-98

Well-Known Member
I fear for my Tiki birds. I really do. I'm a complete hypocrite for letting (well, Disney doesn't need my permission!) Disney rethink/redo attractions to reflect the times but then scream about my fears that they'll change my favorite attraction. I understand, I really do. But I'm truly stubborn and contradictory.

"I don't mind if they change the attractions that are not my favorite" is both an understandable and pretty universal opinion.
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
IMHO, it's not Disney bowing to pressure, per se, it's Disney playing corporate CYA...it's no longer "if it ain't broke, don't fix it", it's trying to head off the (pardon the pun) tweens that should be outside enjoying life, but they have their extra large posteriors glued to their computers (notice I didn't use the term fat, lest I offend them, lol), the same group that think it's perfectly ok to entice their friends on tictok (and gather clicks) to use Gorilla Glue in their hair and go into a supermarket and open an ice cream container, lick it and put it back...to them that's hilarious but it's not ok to have a comedic, caricature of real, past examples of life in some portions of the world... now that Disney owns National Geographic, I guess all of those old articles and photos of life in those areas of the world will soon disappear too. Judging by the amount of South American tour groups that have been visiting, (pre-COVID), they apparently don't have a problem with it...one would think if Disney got complaints, it would come from them, but alas, it isn't or hasn't that I'm aware of.

We are very quickly becoming a sterile, vapid society. I would imagine those same people causing the uproar all will laugh like h**l at a Richard Pryor or Chris Rock comedy routine in their bedrooms but behind the keyboards, they are woke warriors.

And since I'm still on my soapbox, kudos to Me TV for keeping Pepe Le Pew and Speedy Gonzales on their cartoon shows...I saw Pepe last Saturday morning...it gives me hope that there is still SOME sanity in our world.

OK, I'll get off it now...the soap box, that is...
 

RSoxNo1

Well-Known Member
Nice list of 50¢ words.

The mob that expects cartoons to accurately reflect real life probably doesn’t have a sense of humor anyway.

I don’t mind the idea of updating the (admittedly creaky, outdated) Jungle Cruise, but we also have to acknowledge that this department will only have jobs as long as they keep finding problems—real or imaginary. Targeting live-action cartoons such as the JC, POTC, and Tiki while the culturally-sensitive DAK is down the road is a perfect example of this nonsense.

If Disney’s own leadership can’t distinguish between ***innocent*** (important word!) cartoon caricatures and real-life cultures, they’re politicizing their theme parks. I keep seeing these “refrain from politics” warnings across the forum, but most fans aren’t interested in politicizing WDW. That’s Disney’s fault.

(And I know, someone could argue about what’s an “innocent caricature,” and I would ask if everyone is lampooned equally.)
I understand your sentiment, but I also recognize that Disney is making these changes to avoid negative press in an ever evolving society. You mentioned DAK and I'm sure on the heals of Blackfish they were fearful of the next documentary criticizing them for housing elephants.

This is a company that has become exceptionally risk averse, often to the detriment or even destruction of things that were previously beloved. It's an impossible balance, but for me I'm far more comfortable with changes like this than otherwise poor decisions like unnecessary character integration or breaks to thematic integrity.
 
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RSoxNo1

Well-Known Member
IMHO, it's not Disney bowing to pressure, per se, it's Disney playing corporate CYA...it's no longer "if it ain't broke, don't fix it", it's trying to head off the (pardon the pun) tweens that should be outside enjoying life, but they have their extra large posteriors glued to their computers (notice I didn't use the term fat, lest I offend them, lol), the same group that think it's perfectly ok to entice their friends on tictok (and gather clicks) to use Gorilla Glue in their hair and go into a supermarket and open an ice cream container, lick it and put it back...to them that's hilarious but it's not ok to have a comedic, caricature of real, past examples of life in some portions of the world... now that Disney owns National Geographic, I guess all of those old articles and photos of life in those areas of the world will soon disappear too. Judging by the amount of South American tour groups that have been visiting, (pre-COVID), they apparently don't have a problem with it...one would think if Disney got complaints, it would come from them, but alas, it isn't or hasn't that I'm aware of.

We are very quickly becoming a sterile, vapid society. I would imagine those same people causing the uproar all will laugh like h**l at a Richard Pryor or Chris Rock comedy routine in their bedrooms but behind the keyboards, they are woke warriors.

And since I'm still on my soapbox, kudos to Me TV for keeping Pepe Le Pew and Speedy Gonzales on their cartoon shows...I saw Pepe last Saturday morning...it gives me hope that there is still SOME sanity in our world.

OK, I'll get off it now...the soap box, that is...
A few summers ago I saw Dave Chapelle and Jon Stewart do a show together. Beyond it being a great show, there were some interesting take aways. Chapelle claimed that comedians having their feet held to the fire for jokes is Jon Stewart's fault. He gave an heir of credibility to comedians on important topics and this eliminated context for all.

The problem is people simply can't make the distinction anymore. There's a level of hypersensitivity that stems from the larger issue of our unwillingness to talk with each other anymore. But in Disney's mind, people shouldn't be going to a Disney park and be offended. I understand the mindset that trying to hit that moving target is an impossible task and you need to find a definitive line. This is where Disney is at, they're picking and choosing, and presumably going down the line of items that are clearly problematic first.
 

Animaniac93-98

Well-Known Member
I don’t mind the idea of updating the (admittedly creaky, outdated) Jungle Cruise, but we also have to acknowledge that this department will only have jobs as long as they keep finding problems—real or imaginary.

There's a growing cottage industry of "inclusion directors" and one has to wonder what are the qualifications for such a role and are companies actually taking their opinions seriously.

We used to joke about how bloated the bureaucracy of WDI was. That there would be people who would make ridiculous, time consuming and expensive demands to justify their positions. This seems to be no different, despite the good intentions.
 

Brer Oswald

Well-Known Member
I think the biggest issue with the “Trader Sam” debacle is that nobody can seem to decide on what the problem is. Some say it’s because he was black (Trader Sam is but “Trader Sam” wasn’t). Some say it’s because he was a cartoonish caricature (which Disney does in all of their animated films). Myself and a few others have pointed out the way it jokes around with the head hunting and shrunken heads is bad. Some point to his outfit.

This right here. THIS is why context matters. Even if the context is bad, it’s important to know what the issue actually is. I’ve seen plenty of people talking about how it’s great that they removed the figure, but that they can keep the head hunting jokes up. I’m not so sure that would be right.
 

LittleBuford

Well-Known Member
I think the biggest issue with the “Trader Sam” debacle is that nobody can seem to decide on what the problem is. Some say it’s because he was black (Trader Sam is but “Trader Sam” wasn’t). Some say it’s because he was a cartoonish caricature (which Disney does in all of their animated films). Myself and a few others have pointed out the way it jokes around with the head hunting and shrunken heads is bad. Some point to his outfit.

This right here. THIS is why context matters. Even if the context is bad, it’s important to know what the issue actually is. I’ve seen plenty of people talking about how it’s great that they removed the figure, but that they can keep the head hunting jokes up. I’m not so sure that would be right.
I don't think it's a debacle, nor do I think the problem is difficult to describe: both versions of the character are crude stereotypes of "native" tribesmen. Sure, there are differences between them, as well as a number of additional factors that are interesting to consider, but the basic issue seems straightforward enough to me.
 

Brer Oswald

Well-Known Member
"I don't mind if they change the attractions that are not my favorite" is both an understandable and pretty universal opinion.
It’s understandable, but not exactly fair or rational. “So and so’s favourite ride can go, but if they touch Suicide Plantation House, I will not go to Disney anymore.”

That’s obvious hyperbole. However, I’m not quite sure why people in the fan base feel like they can go around claiming to be morally superior to people for liking certain attractions that are being changed, but will die for their own “problematic favorites”.

Disney’s gonna do what Disney’s gonna do. I just expected more from the community. But perhaps I was foolish too? Oh well.
 

Brer Oswald

Well-Known Member
I don't think it's a debacle, nor do I think the problem is difficult to describe: both versions of the character are crude stereotypes of "native" tribesmen. Sure, there are differences between them, as well as a variety of contextual factors that are interesting to consider, but the basic issue seems straightforward enough to me.
But again, we’re simplifying. Why is it offensive? We all know that it is, but why? The basic issue isn’t the problem. Because if the only issue is his costume, then Disney can go around selling $15 Shrunken Drunken Heads and making the “ahead” jokes. But if that’s an issue as well, then that needs to be addressed. These need to be learning situations, not morality ego boosters.
 

LittleBuford

Well-Known Member
But again, we’re simplifying. Why is it offensive? We all know that it is, but why?
My earlier answer to this question was indeed simplistic, so if you'll allow me to reformulate it with some additional context: Trader Sam is offensive (or at least considered by many to be offensive) because he's a crude stereotype of a "native" tribesman in a park that currently lacks positive representations of people of colour and in a world where racism remains a big problem.
 

Smiley/OCD

Well-Known Member
I don't think it's a debacle, nor do I think the problem is difficult to describe: both versions of the character are crude stereotypes of "native" tribesmen. Sure, there are differences between them, as well as a number of additional factors that are interesting to consider, but the basic issue seems straightforward enough to me.
You may not think it's a debacle, but it kinda is...I haven't heard from any relatives of the "native" tribesPEOPLE (you should be PC here), complaining about it...all of the complainers should just heed the immortal wisdom of Sgt. Hulka in Stripes..."Lighten up, Francis".
 

LittleBuford

Well-Known Member
You may not think it's a debacle, but it kinda is...I haven't heard from any relatives of the "native" tribesPEOPLE (you should be PC here), complaining about it...all of the complainers should just heed the immortal wisdom of Sgt. Hulka in Stripes..."Lighten up, Francis".
For something to be a debacle, doesn't it have to be a fiasco? You and others may disagree with Trader Sam's removal, but what about it is shambolic in your view? They quietly took the figure out without closing the attraction, having already given fair warning that the ride was being modified, and they'll presumably put something in his place before too long. As Disney renovations go, this one is going pretty smoothly and to plan from what I can see. The only tumult is here in the thread (and, I imagine, in other angry corners of the internet).
 

Brer Oswald

Well-Known Member
My earlier answer to this question was indeed simplistic, so if you'll allow me to reformulate it with some additional context: Trader Sam is offensive (or at least considered by many to be offensive) because he's a crude stereotype of a "native" tribesman in a park that currently lacks positive representations of people of colour and in a world where racism remains a big problem.
That’s still incredibly simplistic. Why is he crude? What aspects about him are the issue? I’m not saying this because I disagree with the sentiment, but these are questions that people, and the decision makers at the company, should be asking themselves.

It’s not as simple as “Older depiction = bad”. Disney is going to continue making animated/cartoon humans of different cultures, and it is important to know what are the issues so they do not repeat them. It’s also important so that we know how to assess future cases.
 

LittleBuford

Well-Known Member
That’s still incredibly simplistic. Why is he crude? What aspects about him are the issue?
Others have already enumerated what is problematic about the two versions of Trader Sam, and I don't really have anything to add to their observations.

I’m not saying this because I disagree with the sentiment, but these are questions that people, and the decision makers at the company, should be asking themselves.
We don't know what questions the people making these decisions are asking themselves. I've seen nothing to suggest that they're asking the wrong questions.

It’s not as simple as “Older depiction = bad”. Disney is going to continue making animated/cartoon humans of different cultures, and it is important to know what are the issues so they do not repeat them. It’s also important so that we know how to assess future cases.
I said nothing about the age of the depictions! And while I hope whatever we create today will stand the test of time, I wouldn't be at all surprised if attitudes shift again in the future, requiring further adaptations. Such shifts are simply an unavoidable part of human history.
 

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