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Little Mermaid Ride Adjustments

bubbles1812

Well-Known Member
There is only one big show scene in the roller coaster, and that won't and would be really hard with the current plans to change... Not that I'm insider lol but I have seen the designs for this particular attraction.
Yeah...and that's exactly why I don't think it will be an E-ticket attraction. One show scene? And then just grass and trees? They could have done so much more with the movie than that. With hearing that, it makes me think even more of Barnstormer and less of Everest or Big Thunder (who has good show throughout). Not that Barnstormer is terrible or anything but it's definitely not what I think of when I think of a "Big" attraction. I think, as I said with Mermaid, they should be really tempering peoples' expectations on the ride. I'm really looking forward to the ride because I love Little Mermaid, love it, but I recognize it's no E ticket. Which is fine, it wasn't mean to be that.. but I do think MK needs a new big attraction and I just don't think anything in NFE is really going to be it.
 

Donald96

Well-Known Member
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Yeah, there is only one show building which contains the largest lift hill, the show scene, train storage, the station, and part of the line. The inside part of the line isn't interactive, or at least from what I saw, it does have some pretty cool chandeliers though! The inside largest lift hill has some latterns, and the classic mine supports and there will be music. Some pretty cool aspects to the show scene though. No idea whats in the cottage however.. :(
 

RSoxNo1

Well-Known Member
Little Mermaid is a good ride. It's not a game changer but the reality is it wasn't meant to be. I like Little Mermaid more than any current Fantasyland dark ride but probably less than Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin. Having said that, I think that's a matter of preference, as the Little Mermaid is a more impressive attraction than Buzz Lightyear, I just like showing off my lack of depth perception.

Also of note, the full name of the attraction is Under the Sea: Journey of the Little Mermaid. When my favorite imagineer Chris Beatty was asked about the "Under the Sea" portion of this potentially being a link to 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea he said that he didn't make the connection but probably will in the future. I'm curious if that actually came up in the naming of it.
 

J03Y

Well-Known Member
personally, from what i've seen in YouTube videos, i want some more dark ride aspects. it really doesn't look that much like a dark ride to me at all. it's still good, but i'm just that kinda guy who wants what he was told. bleh, it doesn't matter i love the ride even if it's misnamed a bit. and WDW's version is going to kick rear ends so i'm not phased.

I'm all for this. THOROUGHLY looking forward to our version in WDW. It's clear that it'll be superior overall! Even now, just look at the facade!!
i truly see no lies ;)
 

Cosmic Commando

Well-Known Member
It also doesn't help the fact that the exterior of LM here looks like it should contain an E-Ticket inside. When was the last time Disney has built such an elaborate facade for a nice little C+ ticket dark ride?
As elaborate? I'd say that the Disneyland Fantasyland dark ride facades are as elaborate. The "problem" with Mermaid is that you see the whole show building. If any dark ride was built like this, it would look "bigger" than it is. I haven't seen it for myself yet, but I don't think it rises to the level of seeing an unthemed show building, so I'd rather have a fun ride that I can get onto with little wait.

Also, it doesn't matter if you have 100 people in the queue or 1000, it's still the same number of people on the ride. I've heard that Mermaid can sometimes be a walk-on, but that is the nature of the omnimover. If you could look at the total number of people who ride each attraction on a given day, Mermaid would probably be in the top 10% because it's an omnimover that usually has a wait.
 

Pixiedustmaker

Well-Known Member
Here's a pic that the Disney Parks twitter account gave us of the shipwreck: http://yfrog.com/z/eor6mdj
I'm not sure why the shipwreck stuff is supposed to have barnacles on it (unless the ship acquired them while in use I guess), but that doesn't explain barnacles on the rocks as presumably this area won't be underwater. Some of the "wood" is clearly connected to a rock and some of the rockwork, I guess made to look like sand?, flows over the wood. It is typical Disney construction of the past decade, made to look realistic but also cartoony . . . it doesn't quite work for me. Didn't Ariel's Mom die when a ship hit the coast or something? (Straight to DVD LM movie I think) I can't quite see the connection to Little Mermaid, but I guess I'll have to keep an open eye.

Given the prominence of Eric's ship in the film, I think they should have used the ship as the entrance to the ride, where guests can go down into the ship and thus under the ocean. And a ship that looked like the old pirate ship in Fantasyland DL wouldn't look so bad either. I don't get why the went with Prince Eric's castle
 

Pixiedustmaker

Well-Known Member
Little Mermaid is a good ride. It's not a game changer but the reality is it wasn't meant to be.

Also of note, the full name of the attraction is Under the Sea: Journey of the Little Mermaid.
Interesting, I think DCA's version is The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure. The Magic Kingdom's version sounds like they are putting the focus on the Under the Sea musical part of the ride, as opposed to an "adventure" as the ride is more of a music review than entering a wonderfully detailed environment like Pirates, or opposed to having an adventure like Peter Pan. With DCA's version, you don't get the feeling that your the one on an adventure, but that you're reviewing scenes from the movie from a musical standpoint.

Anyway . . . wasn't the Fantasyland Expansion meant to be an answer to Harry Potter? I gotta say that I never really visited IOA despite being to WDW dozens and dozens of times, when Potterland 2.0 opens, I'm going to spend at least a whole day.

FLE is sounding more like just some expected upgrades to Fantasyland, double capacity of Dumbo moved to a larger area for lines, added LM but took out Snow White, and adding a nice little ride like Casey Jr. in DLR which will be the Seven Dwarfs coster. Don't get me wrong, I like Casey Jr. train in Disneyland, and Seven Dwarfs will have a similar appeal, but a little extra, a little bit of dark ride, but all these changes, save for the B&B restaurant, don't seem like a reason for guests to come back again and again. I'll wait to see the final product, but I think that it will be more magical to walk around the Potterlands than FLE.
 

danlb_2000

Premium Member
I'm not sure why the shipwreck stuff is supposed to have barnacles on it (unless the ship acquired them while in use I guess), but that doesn't explain barnacles on the rocks as presumably this area won't be underwater. Some of the "wood" is clearly connected to a rock and some of the rockwork, I guess made to look like sand?, flows over the wood. It is typical Disney construction of the past decade, made to look realistic but also cartoony . . . it doesn't quite work for me. Didn't Ariel's Mom die when a ship hit the coast or something? (Straight to DVD LM movie I think) I can't quite see the connection to Little Mermaid, but I guess I'll have to keep an open eye.

Given the prominence of Eric's ship in the film, I think they should have used the ship as the entrance to the ride, where guests can go down into the ship and thus under the ocean. And a ship that looked like the old pirate ship in Fantasyland DL wouldn't look so bad either. I don't get why the went with Prince Eric's castle
It's hard to tell from the picture, but it's possible that the water will come up pretty high on the wreck. In the DCA version of the ride your ride vehicle does enter the ride through a ship wreck. Not sure if they will do the same thing in this version.
 

danlb_2000

Premium Member
Interesting, I think DCA's version is The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure. The Magic Kingdom's version sounds like they are putting the focus on the Under the Sea musical part of the ride, as opposed to an "adventure" as the ride is more of a music review than entering a wonderfully detailed environment like Pirates, or opposed to having an adventure like Peter Pan. With DCA's version, you don't get the feeling that your the one on an adventure, but that you're reviewing scenes from the movie from a musical standpoint.

Anyway . . . wasn't the Fantasyland Expansion meant to be an answer to Harry Potter? I gotta say that I never really visited IOA despite being to WDW dozens and dozens of times, when Potterland 2.0 opens, I'm going to spend at least a whole day.

FLE is sounding more like just some expected upgrades to Fantasyland, double capacity of Dumbo moved to a larger area for lines, added LM but took out Snow White, and adding a nice little ride like Casey Jr. in DLR which will be the Seven Dwarfs coster. Don't get me wrong, I like Casey Jr. train in Disneyland, and Seven Dwarfs will have a similar appeal, but a little extra, a little bit of dark ride, but all these changes, save for the B&B restaurant, don't seem like a reason for guests to come back again and again. I'll wait to see the final product, but I think that it will be more magical to walk around the Potterlands than FLE.
As a number of insiders have pointed out in the past, Fantasyland was never intended to be an answer to Potter. It's primary purpose was to increase Magic Kingdom's capacity since it is the most visited of the Disney parks.
 

Pixiedustmaker

Well-Known Member
It's hard to tell from the picture, but it's possible that the water will come up pretty high on the wreck. In the DCA version of the ride your ride vehicle does enter the ride through a ship wreck. Not sure if they will do the same thing in this version.
Yeah, this part of the ride is pretty cheap in DCA, they've got an Ariel mural and a little "shipwreck entrance", but it looks really fake. The original version of the queue had a 3-D ocean scene next to a more 3-D built shipwreck entrance, not a flat mural and the cheap shipwreck entrance which doesn't make sense given the mural right next to it.

I do think MK's queue for LM will be a good improvement, but I kinda wonder how using rock work to hide the show building will work with the look of the rest of the land, namely the B&B restaurant and the Seven Dwarfs coaster. I think a ship and much less rockwork would have worked better. Still a whole lot better than DCA, which obviously got the budget cut-back a lot.
 

Pixiedustmaker

Well-Known Member
As a number of insiders have pointed out in the past, Fantasyland was never intended to be an answer to Potter. It's primary purpose was to increase Magic Kingdom's capacity since it is the most visited of the Disney parks.
A lot of bloggers like Al Lutz and company watchers mentioned that Disney's decision to push forward with FLE was spurred in part by Harry Potter. Also, MK attendance is not growing, despite slight improvements in the economy.

Magic Kingdom

2008 . . . 17,063,000
2009 . . . 17,233,000
2010 . . . 16,972,000
2011 . . . 17,142,000


2011 attendance at IOA jumped 29% . . . to 7.7 million. Potterland was responsible for half of the overall increase in theme park attendance of 2.9%.

The fact of the matter is that WDW is competing with Potterland, though they also have said that Potterland will "rise all boats" and provide more guests for MK. This hasn't necessarily happened. Why did Disney suddenly realize that Fantasyland didn't have enough capacity? Yeah, there is the clogged corridor of death, but given flat attendance numbers, you can see why until 7 Dwarfs coaster was announced they were sticking with the "add a ride remove a ride" ethos. Take out Snow White, add LM. Increase capacity of Dumbo.

If Disney really is just undertaking regularly scheduled park enhancements, they why the big hoopla, announcements, and advertisements for FLE? I guess this means that if attendance doesn't markedly uptick because of FLE then that is "ok" . . .

 

danlb_2000

Premium Member
A lot of bloggers like Al Lutz and company watchers mentioned that Disney's decision to push forward with FLE was spurred in part by Harry Potter. Also, MK attendance is not growing, despite slight improvements in the economy.

Magic Kingdom

2008 . . . 17,063,000
2009 . . . 17,233,000
2010 . . . 16,972,000
2011 . . . 17,142,000


2011 attendance at IOA jumped 29% . . . to 7.7 million. Potterland was responsible for half of the overall increase in theme park attendance of 2.9%.

The fact of the matter is that WDW is competing with Potterland, though they also have said that Potterland will "rise all boats" and provide more guests for MK. This hasn't necessarily happened. Why did Disney suddenly realize that Fantasyland didn't have enough capacity? Yeah, there is the clogged corridor of death, but given flat attendance numbers, you can see why until 7 Dwarfs coaster was announced they were sticking with the "add a ride remove a ride" ethos. Take out Snow White, add LM. Increase capacity of Dumbo.

If Disney really is just undertaking regularly scheduled park enhancements, they why the big hoopla, announcements, and advertisements for FLE? I guess this means that if attendance doesn't markedly uptick because of FLE then that is "ok" . . .

Those actual attendance numbers don't really mean much because they happened when FLE was already under construction. It's possible that Disney thought that attendance would increase significantly and the capacity would be needed.

Before the 7 Dwarfs coaster was announced they weren't taking out Snow White so now ride was being sacrificed to add LM, although I am sure some will argue that 20K was sacrificed a long time ago for LM. I personally haven't seen much "hoppla" at all for FLE.

I really don't see FLE driving a large attendance increase. Unlike Potter I just don't see anything in FLE that would get a lot of people interested in making a special trip to see it. I'm not knocking the expansion, it's going to add much needed capacity to the part and especially Fantasyland and it appears that the area will be beautifully themed, I am just not seeing it as a huge draw.
 

donsullivan

Premium Member
For those who want to use selective data to justify their case on the topic, lets take a look at all of the data for IOA over the last few years.

IOA Attendance as reported by TEA
2003= 6,000,000
2004= 6,300,000
2005= 5,760,000
2006= 5,300,000
2007= 5,430,000
2008= 5,297,000
2009= 4,627,000
2010= 5,949,000- Harry Potter Opens in June
2011= 7,674,000

If you look at that longer term data trend it shows that IOA was in a long term decline in attendance prior to the HP investment. They had to do something to arrest the aggressive decline in their numbers if only to stay financially viable and competitive for the long haul. While they have certainly shown a solid uptick in numbers those numbers need to be kept relative to the long term decline they had been in prior to the HP investment.

Having competition in the marketplace benefits us all but these investments are made for the long haul (5+ years), not just to spike numbers for a year or two. The real impact of investments like HP and FLE need to be measured over many years to see if they have a sustained impact on the attendance numbers.

HP certainly had a positive impact on IOA but it's simply too early to know if it will have a sustained impact but the pattern certainly suggests that it will. However, there is no statistical data to prove it has impacted Disney negatively. WDW total attendance numbers have fluctuated in a range of about 1/2 million total guests for the last 5 years with fluctuations that can easily be mapped to economic trends.
 

TP2000

Well-Known Member
Yeah, this part of the ride is pretty cheap in DCA, they've got an Ariel mural and a little "shipwreck entrance", but it looks really fake. The original version of the queue had a 3-D ocean scene next to a more 3-D built shipwreck entrance, not a flat mural and the cheap shipwreck entrance which doesn't make sense given the mural right next to it.
At the end of the big mural along the load/unload belts at DCA...



This is the shipwreck your clamshell car enters at the start of the Mermaid ride at DCA, after the load/unload belts that parallel the big mural.



The WDW version of Mermaid also has a big long mural along the load/unload belts. But the artwork shown has the loading area in sort of a rocky grotto that continues the rocky shoreline theme of the extended queue prior to the load/unload area. The clamshells appear to just go into a rocky outcropping in the grotto area to begin the ride.

The WDW version of the ride itself, once you take a seat in your clamshell, will be identical to the recently rehabbed and updated Disney California Adventure version.
 

Pixiedustmaker

Well-Known Member
The WDW version of Mermaid also has a big long mural along the load/unload belts. But the artwork shown has the loading area in sort of a rocky grotto that continues the rocky shoreline theme of the extended queue prior to the load/unload area. The clamshells appear to just go into a rocky outcropping in the grotto area to begin the ride.

The WDW version of the ride itself, once you take a seat in your clamshell, will be identical to the recently rehabbed and updated Disney California Adventure version.
Murals are OK . . . for hotels and restaurants, and older dark rides have them in the loading area, but the concept art for MK's loading area looks a lot better, at least as far as the shipwreck boat actually being in a seaside cave with the ocean out in the distance,



DCA's load area looks horribly fake a shipwreck next to a mural, and having ridden DCA's ride, believe me, the load area does nothing to "tell the story."

Let's hope that the MK version is nothing like DCA's, below is DCA's finale scene with the recycled turtle dancing the same way as his twins inside the Under the Sea scene, what a cheap way to end a ride,



I think even the Sebastian is the same! Check out Triton's eyebrows, they look like racoon tails, I guess we know what happened with those extra Davy Crockett coonskin caps they couldn't sell.

It just doesn't make sense, the sea animals should be waving to Ariel and Eric, who are out of view on the left and just got married, yet they are singing away to the beat of "Under the Sea" though the music here is different. They got really cheap! The turtle is the same, and the lobsters look familiar too! Sebastian looks like he is the same throughout the ride, conducting away . . .



Yup, the happy lobsters were duplicated for the finale, as was Sebastian! You can see him at the top here!

More duplicates, one of the "happy fish" heading to the Under the Sea scene is painted another color and looks way too happy to see Ariel get married, (here's green below at the beginning of the ride, and then turns purple for the wedding). That's right they were too . . . cheap to mold new fish that didn't look like they were laughing at Ariel! Oh! and I just noticed that the orange fish looks the same as in the beginning and end! I am guessing that only Ariel, Eric and Triton at original for the finale scene, everything else is an exact duplicate. WDI talked about not revealing the special ending, looks pretty cheap to me that they just recycled stuff, including the best animatronic in the scene, conductor Sebastian. OH, by the way, who in the world is he conducting? The idiotically dancing lobsters?

 

TP2000

Well-Known Member
Pixiedustmaker, I don't know how to tell you this as you really seem to dislike the new Little Mermaid ride, but the WDW version of Mermaid is an exact duplicate of the DCA version.

There will be differences in the queue (Fastpass driven mostly) and exterior facade, obviously, but once you sit down in your clamshell it will be the exact same ride. WDW will get the 2012 Mermaid 2.0 version that DCA just reopened though, not the 2011 Mermaid 1.0 version with the first-version hairdo and different animation projections. ;)
 

Pixiedustmaker

Well-Known Member
Pixiedustmaker, I don't know how to tell you this as you really seem to dislike the new Little Mermaid ride, but the WDW version of Mermaid is an exact duplicate of the DCA version.

There will be differences in the queue (Fastpass driven mostly) and exterior facade, obviously, but once you sit down in your clamshell it will be the exact same ride. WDW will get the 2012 Mermaid 2.0 version that DCA just reopened though, not the 2011 Mermaid 1.0 version with the first-version hairdo and different animation projections. ;)
DCA's LM doesn't need FastPass, though I haven't been back since Carsland opened.

I do really dislike the DCA LM ride, as I do Disneyland's Pooh ride. I love MK's version of Pooh, which is just somehow better, and was hoping that LM in MK would be better as sometimes MK gets better versions of rides. Certainly, there's been a bit of time between the openings for two rides, June 3rd, 2011 and potentially late 2012 or later for MK's version. Maybe 15 to 18 months between openings. Certainly enough time to make some changes as DCA's version is kinda cheaply built.
 

danlb_2000

Premium Member
Pixiedustmaker, I don't know how to tell you this as you really seem to dislike the new Little Mermaid ride, but the WDW version of Mermaid is an exact duplicate of the DCA version.

There will be differences in the queue (Fastpass driven mostly) and exterior facade, obviously, but once you sit down in your clamshell it will be the exact same ride. WDW will get the 2012 Mermaid 2.0 version that DCA just reopened though, not the 2011 Mermaid 1.0 version with the first-version hairdo and different animation projections. ;)
There have been some rumors that the WDW version would be different, but I don't feel that any of them were credible. I think WDW is getting an exact copy, aside from the queue, of the ride from DCA.
 
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