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  1. #1

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    So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Here's the thing.

    I do believe TL, right now, is a complete mess. But there's a deeper problem underneath it's chaos - it's that it doesn't have a unified vision, IMHO. Frontierland, Adventureland, Fantasyland - they all have a really strong sense of what they should be. TL should be the same - at least, that's what Walt and Co. originally intended, but right now TL is a submarine voyage to find a fish's dad, a toy playing against his nemesis, a Best Buy, an old movie and two space trips (one of them based on a story that happened "a long time ago" -how futuristic!). All against the shadow of defunct attractions (the cherished PeopleMover, Mission to Mars, and the ghost of the Carousel of Progress).

    Every now and then I think - what would I do differently if I was in charge? First -I'd drop prices and raise CM's wages (but I digress). About Tomorrowland - that's the part of the park I'd definitely focus my efforts on. I guess there hasn't really been a single version of the Land that is satisfying, except for TL '67. Which was focused on, well, the future - a moving target that never came to be. But oh, what a future it was!

    So, I was considering the old Mary Blair murals, and suddenly, I got the idea. There's a vision of the future that hardly ever changes: the future as seen through the eyes of a child. That future would mean world peace, understanding, cooperation, friendship and excitement. It's not a moving target - it's an ideal, a true goal, a real vision.

    Sort of Fantasyland meets EPCOT Center (the old one).

    That's what I'd try the new TL to be. If its true that the old murals are still there, I'd rip those horrible, cheap things that are covering the Mary Blair ones and start from there. The unifying vision would be peace through understanding, knowledge and happiness. Forget Star Wars; that's the real future, our real challenge.

    The old Carousel of Progress could be brought back to its roots and have rotating displays of technology. Create 5 stories of what the future may be, and keep replacing a scene every 4 or so years. Sort of like Spaceship Earth - but don't let the future keep up with you - just keep moving (there goes Finding Nemo again).

    Keep Space Mountain, but update it with the highest tech possible and focus on transportation and adventure. Get the subs back, change the theme to underwater colonies, exploration, ecology, etc.. Turn Buzz Lightyear into a solid D+ ticket dark ride, focused on great achievements of mankind and possible future ones - and keep an interactive element, so it doesn't get boring. PeopleMover - think about a really novel means of transportation - solar energy, whatever - and send it back into operation. Build something on the empty space between TL and Main Street - perhaps an updated Mission Space E-ticket? Focus on movement, data transmission; use NFC and Wi-Fi to deliver new interactive experiences all around the place (but don't even try a MyMagic+ or whatever it's called Big Brother thing! Send information, trivia, ideas - engage the crowd through technology), fill the land with fiber optics that make the area become alive at night, have different groups play in a small arena where the Magic Eye Theater now is, remove the rockets, send them back to their rightful place... and yes... style it all just like the murals of Mary Blair. Forget about all white 60's style future, or brown and algae green of TL '98.

    The future is more than futuristic or abstracts looks and shapes, or about an (admittedly awesome, great, epic and incredible) movie trilogy that has no place at Disneyland; is about our capacity to love and get along one another. That's what we should look forward to.

  2. #2

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    I think that Tomorrowland has always been a "plug-and-play" kinda land where attractions have been added, and removed, over the years, which is better or worse depending on who you'd ask.

    So, I don't think that they'd gut more than one attraction at a time to add something new. Star Tours, Space, Buzz, Nemo, Autopia all, IMHO, seem to be popular and beloved by various cohorts of guests.

    I think some key areas for improvement are:

    1. Innoventions. I don't like much there, it can go and it's space, and even the space above TL could be used for a new ride.
    2. Autopia, I say go electric and add a new theme, like maybe a foreign planet or something, they could also add new motion effects to the cars if they really wanted to make the ride unique.
    3. Old People Mover station, people mover track, Tomorrowland terrace, room for improvement.
    4. Captain EO could be replaced with something else, like something based on Pixar's "Inside Out."

    Tomorrowland is popular with most guests given the wait times and that it can get packed, adding a brand new E-Ticket would wow guests for generations to come.

    I kinda think that in terms of a more Epcot-style Tomorrowland, that that boat has kinda sailed. Sure, technology can be amazing, but its so omnipresent, folks have cell phones, MagicBands, and cars that drive themselves and Amazon's idea for drones deliveries. People need an escape, IMHO, when they enter a theme park, and more folks work in a high-tech world than ever.

    Don't get me wrong, I love the old Epcot rides, and even today Spaceship Earth is the optimistic/utopian vision of tomorrow, but there are so many rides in Disneyland's tomorrow land that *don't* have that vibe that they'd have to basically take out everything, IMHO.

    1. Space Mountain. We've got probes going to Mars, even to land on comets, it's very retro, and dated, IMHO. What does the Halloween overlay have to do with the future?
    2. Star Tours is Star Wars, a great workhorse ride for Disneyland, not Epcot.
    3. Buzz.
    4. Nemo
    5. Astro-jets
    6. Jedi Academy

    Sure, I like 1982 Epcot, the old Journey Into Imagination was great, but they're not going to remove all of these rides in Tomorrowland. It's a new Tomorrowland more focus on space-related Fantasy, different, but also enjoyable in its own way, IMHO.
    Last edited by chesirecat; 12-04-2013 at 09:29 AM.

  3. #3

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by fjhuerta View Post
    So, I was considering the old Mary Blair murals, and suddenly, I got the idea. There's a vision of the future that hardly ever changes: the future as seen through the eyes of a child. That future would mean world peace, understanding, cooperation, friendship and excitement. It's not a moving target - it's an ideal, a true goal, a real vision.

    Sort of Fantasyland meets EPCOT Center (the old one).

    That's what I'd try the new TL to be. If its true that the old murals are still there, I'd rip those horrible, cheap things that are covering the Mary Blair ones and start from there. The unifying vision would be peace through understanding, knowledge and happiness. Forget Star Wars; that's the real future, our real challenge.
    Bingo!

    This at the core is what Tomorrowland is all about. It is this loss of vision statement which really is the reason Tomorrowland no longer works. Ever since the Cold War the world has become cynical and fearful about its technology. I say show a future where technology makes the world a better place. And a big step in that direction is to uncover those murals once again. If Disney is so gung-ho about making Tomorrowland futuristic then put the kids in space suits. As much as I would hate that I would welcome the idea being presented - a future world living in peace in part because of the advances in modern technology.

    (And btw this vision is carried out also in iasw. It's no coincidence that Tomorrowland and Fantasyland sit side by side.)

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by fjhuerta View Post
    I guess there hasn't really been a single version of the Land that is satisfying, except for TL '67. Which was focused on, well, the future - a moving target that never came to be. But oh, what a future it was!
    A lot of the futuristic movies that have come out the past couple decades portray a future which is a war zones/big adventure, or a false utopia like Oblivion or iRobot where danger lurks underneath the surface. Look at the Aliens/Promethesus movies, corporations doing bad things and alien monsters. Jusy say that today's kids play uber violent video games like Halo and there isn't this idea that the future, or outer space, is going to be wonderful because of technology. You've got Snowden/NSA, and every new technological invention is just a new way for a terrorist to make a bomb, like using cellphones to blow things up, and so forth.

    So . . . the future as a concept isn't a utopia, its a world much like this one, where there are still criminals and maybe even more evil corporations, but a lot of new technology that can be used for nefarious purposes.

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyIPresume View Post
    a future world living in peace in part because of the advances in modern technology.
    Only people can decide to sit down and talk together and make peace, technology is just a tool for good or bad. Walt Disney had trouble putting food on the table in the early years, and the idea of big agriculture and new agricultural techniques seemed like a great idea. These days people realize that agriculture is being pushed to limit we're losing topsoil, and how long can production increase before there is famine?

    Monsanto's house of the future, these days people protest against Monsanto and genetically modified crops (personally, I think they're perfectly safe), but you can't with a straight face make a film about how technology will make the world more peaceful anymore. It would look too naive, too retro . . .

    Look at drones heavily used by the military, this isn't a non-violent use of smaller computer control systems, what about Amazon's drone delivery system? The sky could become an eyesore every couple of minutes as drones fly-by, not to mention a danger.

    Some countries have, for various reasons, eschewed modern technology and human rights and moved backwards to a kinda dark ages sort of world.

    Even if they invented a cheap to run flying car it might be a disaster as terrorists could fly them into buildings!

  6. #6

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    If you don't think technology can make the world a better place, you haven't been looking hard enough for stories about it. I really like Bill Gates efforts. Check it out:

    5 Things We Hope Will Inspire Everyone to Help Change the World | Impatient Optimists

    Technology can change the world for the better. Always has. Always will.

  7. #7

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyIPresume View Post
    Bingo!

    This at the core is what Tomorrowland is all about. It is this loss of vision statement which really is the reason Tomorrowland no longer works.
    I don't think anybody would buy the old Tomorrowland vision, even kids these days have internet access, and they're aware of stuff like the war in Syria and famine/cannibalization in North Korea. The world is a scary place, and countries are fighting over resources.

    I mean, you can't have a "Drones of the Future" exhibit and have it be about peace. You can't much talk about great medical discoveries as there are serious infectious disease issues which are getting worse, you can't even celebrate the Age of Penicillin as antibiotics are increasingly becoming ineffective.

    Sure there are some bright spots like solar power, but it's more a fact of everyday life, can't be made into an exciting exhibit when your local school has solar panels over the parking lot.

  8. #8

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    1)Replace "Captain EO" and the Magic Eye Theater with ~The Space Bears~. Yes, our friends from the old Country Bear Playhouse have been traveling in space for lightyears looking for some new talent to join them.....now they're back, with out of this Galaxy song and dance numbers.

    2)Strengthen and enhance supports of roof to old Magic eye theater in order to enhance Space Mountain's queue so entire upper section can be utilized.....with the extra queue space the Speed Ramp entrance out in front can be brought back too.

    3)Move Innoventions to your nearest home electronics shack

    4)Refurbish former Innoventions building and insert a 21st Century Carrousel of Progress/Horizons type attraction.

    5)Insert time travel attraction to replace Buzz.

    6)Build a Skyway transportation center, with destinations to Fantasyland and Hollywood Pictures Back Lot(DCA).

    7)Re-do Starcade with all unique to Disneyland arcade attractions.

    8)Enhance food and theme of Pizza Port as if it were a space station orbiting Jupiter.....cozy, semi-private booths to have wonderful views of the giant planet below.

    9)Alter Autopia's track with thousands of air jets, allowing the newly designed futuristic vehicles to hover as they make their way around the highway of Tomorrow --Hovertopia--

    10)Eventually, re-do Submarine Voyage with all new subs and an all new, Nemoless story.

    11)Change PeopleMover tracks to new "SkyTubes"......add a little extra track for a stop near It's a Small World....add even more track to go across Harbor(see below). Have individual cars so people can choose to go round trip or one way to FL or TLH(see below) without affecting the traffic flow.

    12)Buy Howard Johnsons and remodel it into Tomorrowland Hotel.....featuring studio units inside current, but totally refurbished and remodeled buildings, and individual 3 Bedroom Vacation Club Units built within the landscaping....these units should be somewhat familiar to many a Disneyphile; Home of the Future in outward appearance.

    14)In the former Motor Boat Lagoon, bring in an attraction using Aquatopia(Disney Seas) technology...perhaps ~The Rescuers~ could be showcased here. This would be a Fantasyland attraction, of course, but it would add to the feeling of motion that is so important to Tomorrowland since many TL attractions intertwine over the Motor Boat Lagoon.

    15)Relocate the jets to the top of the new "SkyTubes" platform and give them additional range of motion.

    16) Mary Blair Murals returned to their rightful place.

    For starters anyway
    Waiting for Godot Micechat.com

  9. #9

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by chesirecat View Post
    I don't think anybody would buy the old Tomorrowland vision, even kids these days have internet access, and they're aware of stuff like the war in Syria and famine/cannibalization in North Korea. The world is a scary place, and countries are fighting over resources.
    Hey, DL'55 was opened just 10 years after WWII. There has always been ugly stuff about mankind. That doesn't mean a cynical vision of the future prevails.

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by fjhuerta View Post
    If you don't think technology can make the world a better place, you haven't been looking hard enough for stories about it. I really like Bill Gates efforts. Check it out:

    5 Things We Hope Will Inspire Everyone to Help Change the World | Impatient Optimists

    Technology can change the world for the better. Always has. Always will.
    Your right that optimism sells. I love Epcot's Spaceship Earth, and I hum "Tomorrow's Child", heck, Disneyland opened during the Cold War, when folks were building bomb shelters and stuff like that. I'm much more in Sci-Fi that most guests, so I probably get more out of the older Epcot stuff.

    But in the end . . . the old Tomorrowland was an escape, and it had the World's Fair flare of optimism and kinda being the future's official preview booth. Much, much, harder to do these days as tech is more prevalent, people work in tech firms and industries that didn't exist decades ago. People have a negative view of big corporations, of Google, of big agriculture.

    There is a realization that big tech, and the makers of big tech, don't necessarily have your best interest in heart, so I think that the "technology will change the world into a utopia", the realization nowadays is, "technology improves every year, how well we use it and the rules and regulations, will decide the future of the world, but there are also a lot of dictators and corrupt governments that, until they change, we will always have a dangerous world."

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    But Disneyland is all about imagination. Tomorrowland is not about the future. It's showing people that by thinking outside the box modern technology can in fact lead to a better world.

    That's both the beauty and the future shown or should be shown Tomorrowland - encouraging guests to use their imaginations to take them outside of the real world and into one that doesn't exist but hopefully one day will.

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by fjhuerta View Post
    Hey, DL'55 was opened just 10 years after WWII. There has always been ugly stuff about mankind. That doesn't mean a cynical vision of the future prevails.
    Exactly!

    The 80's was also a very hopeful and optimistic decade...even though we were under the very real threat of nuclear Armageddon back then.
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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by fjhuerta View Post
    Hey, DL'55 was opened just 10 years after WWII. There has always been ugly stuff about mankind. That doesn't mean a cynical vision of the future prevails.
    That's true, but in the 1950's there was a lot of commercials and stuff about new consumers products, new technology, you could believe that technology would change the world for the better. These days not so much, look at high speed rail, very Epcot-ish, but only a small percentage of the population in California would even use it for daily commute, there are just many more people commuting than in the past.

    If I saw a display/show about how technology would improve the world today, I would probably think it was a retro-world's fair/Tomorrowland view point. I mean, tech companies like Apple are updating their products every month it seems, it's just such a part of today's culture it's not special anymore.

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyIPresume View Post
    But Disneyland is all about imagination. Tomorrowland is not about the future. It's showing people that by thinking outside the box modern technology can in fact lead to a better world.

    That's both the beauty and the future shown or should be shown Tomorrowland - encouraging guests to use their imaginations to take them outside of the real world and into one that doesn't exist but hopefully one day will.
    I think that in the 1950's, even the 1980's, most people didn't factor technology into their future career possibilities. Nowadays, technology is everywhere, it's a tool, and sometimes a bane, but its something we all think about. Mission to Mars was cool before there were Xboxes and video games, but kids and even adults are now "gamers" and living in virtual worlds, they don't dream what a future world is like because they go there every weekend to kill alien monsters, IMHO.

    You can see the comedic element, if they had a parade with the "Make Way for the Future" song from Iron Man and cast members dancing around in spacesuits. A lot of people work in R&D, and for IT firms these days, what about the poor guys working on the Obamacare website, they'd barf before they'd sit through a 20-minute show about how technology would save the world, IMHO.

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    Re: So. We all know Tomorrowland is in dire need of help. What changes would you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyIPresume View Post
    That's both the beauty and the future shown or should be shown Tomorrowland - encouraging guests to use their imaginations to take them outside of the real world and into one that doesn't exist but hopefully one day will.
    Hard to do when Disneyland doesn't have a monopoly on what Tomorrow will be like, even more so than in the past, it seems like there are more futuristic video games, movies, television shows than ever. Check out Continuum, I think that's what today's audience thinks of when they think of the future. A complex place where technology can be used for good or bad, like today.


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