Ususally I post picutres of things I spot around the resort... New construction walls, new signage, new merch... Through all of this, I usually fail to notice the ugly... Sure, I'll spot the obvious stuff, but usually its never too notceable to worry about, especially during the whole 50th Anniversary celebration.
Unfortunately, however, I've been noticing a very slow, but steady decline in park maitenance lately. Maybe this can be attributed to two summers of exceptionally big crowds, the revolving door of Cast Members, or maybe even to the recent shuffle of management... But what is clearly obvious is the declining state of the parks...
I suppose what I'm getting at is that I forgot my camera when I went to the park yesterday, so instead of snapping pictures of the construction walls back up near Club Buzz in Tomorrowland, or the new Halloween decorations in Frontierland, I instead took mental notes of some of the bad show I saw around the parks.
Now, allow me to complain for a bit...
INDIANA JONES ADVENTURE:MiceChat's very own Sadako has been chronicling the very quick, very recent decline of Indiana Jones Adventure. I normally pass up Indy when I visit the parks because I'm too impatient to wait in the line. I love the ride, but it isnt a must-do like the Mansion or Pirates for me... Anyway, I went on Indy yesterday as I was visiting with a group of friends who dont get to frequent the parks that often, and I was amazed at the bad show throughout. Maybe its just because I'm a nerd, but it had to be bad - I've NEVER felt so strongly as to want to walk down to City Hall and file a formal complaint before. I didn't get the chance to, because we were on a tight schedule yesterday, but boy did I want to.
TEMPLE OF THE BROKEN ATTRACTION
Sadako's thread on this issue is a good place to go if you haven't heard about the problems with this attraction. Both major interactive elements of the queue are now completely defunct, the rope-in-the-well looks like it may be gone for good, and the bamboo pole isn't working - again. As for the ride, the lighting and rotating doors in the Chamber of Destiny are simply just not working at all. Yesterday, Mara told my Jeep that we had chosen wisely - our path led to timeless youth and beauty - all in darkness. Mara's eyes did not light up. There was not atmosphere lighting in the chamber, nothing. Even though we should have been going through the Fountain of Youth door, we went through the Treasure door. Once we went through the door, the room was lit properly to match the Fountain of Youth destiny, but Mara's eyes weren't smoking as they normally do, and a couple weak flashes of the strobe were all we got as Mara told us that our path now led to the Gates of Doom.
For the most part, the attraction was normal after that. But the ever-underimpressive smoke screen with the rats jumping onto the Jeep transport from the tree root was a bigger joke than ever. Even though the Jeep stalled before going into the show scene, the smoke screen was still forming, and the projection could barely be seen.
What I was pleased with, was that the final Indy animatronic wasn't extremely shaky as he has been in the past few months in the few times that I have been on the ride. I remember passing Indy a few times in the recent past and thinking that the thing was about to collapse right there. I don't know if it was just a fluke, but the animatronic was working as good as can be expected and wasn't shaky at all. So I guess that's good.
HAUNTED LIGHTINGThe Haunted Mansion, my favorite attraction, frustrates me like no other with one simple problem: lighting. Disney needs to arrange a way to get consistant lighting in the attraction. Maybe I'm the only one who notices, but it really kills the atmosphere when I can see the ceiling tiles in the Load Area (Limbo) and in the Graveyard. Another problem is the fact that CMs kill every ounce of mood and setting when they yell out "2 or 3 guests per Buggy!" I understand why they do it, because people are too busy chatting to listen when the Ghost Host tells them, but its really just bad.
The scrim throughout the attraction is a disaster. I don't know if Disney thinks that its just not that obvious, but seeing tears, runs, and loogies on the scrim in the graveyard is way more noticeable than they'd like to admit. It isn't just something they can ignore anymore: it's gotten to the point of BAD SHOW. The scrim isn't something that you should be able to notice in the Haunted Mansion. It's supposed to give an ethereal quality to the show scenes - to make the ghosts look more ghostly. If you actually notice it's there, it just looks like its some weird screen that Disney put up so people wouldnt be able to walk into the show scenes if they hopped off their Doom Buggies.
Another big problem of mine is that you can clearly see where the scrim meets the ceiling of the graveyard and see all of the ceiling tiles. Aren't we supposed to believe that we're outside in the middle of a haunted evening? Seeing the ceiling doesn't allow me to believe any of that. Also, as you exit the Attic window and enter the graveyard, I shouldn't be able to clearly see that strings are holding up the tree's branches/arms.
There is a new sign at the exit to the Mansion though, promoting the new Disney's HalloweenTime. Sorry, this photo is so bad, it was taken with my Sidekick and the lighting made the picture turn out really bad. I tried to fix it in Photoshop, but it just wasn't workin'...
Maybe it was because it was the end of the day, and the custodial CMs just hadn't gotten to it, but take a stroll through California Adventure's entry plaza and look at the ground. So much gum it's depressing. Isn't one of the big things that Walt wanted was that there'd be no gum littering his parks' floors? Hmm. Maybe it just doesn't apply to DCA since the park is more-or-less regarded as the anti-Walt park.
The sign reads:
DISNEY'S GUM ADVENTURE
SOARIN' OVER DIRTThis isn't a new issue, but its certainly an issue that STILL hasn't been addressed by Disney even though they know it's a problem. The IMAX screens over at Soarin' Over California are so filty it's disgusting. Not to mention, the film itself isn't hiding its age very well. It's getting grainy, shaky, and dirty. Starting the ride off with a blinding white screen fading into clouds isn't a dramatic, mood-setting take-off like the Imagineers had planned for with dirt, spit, and who knows what else mucking up the screen.
Somebody needs to get in there and fix this - it's out gotten of control.
GREEN CONE GRAVEYARDWe parked in the structure yesterday, but when I do park in the Timon lot and have to be subjected to seeing the Timon tram stop with all of the green cones and yellow bumps, it's saddening. Not only is this whole area deprived of any magic whatsoever, it's also a maitenance-neglected area. Gum everywhere, burnt out light bulbs in the strings of ugly lighting outside, green cones with chipped-off paint... It's ugly. It's unmagical. It's tacky. Who's bright idea was it to have the most unimaginative area EVER be the first thing a lot of guests see when entering the Resort? It's pathetic.
BUZZ LIGHTYEAR ASTROTURFThe linoleum in the halls of the Buzz Lightyear queue and exit hall needs to be fixed. It's bubbling up, and could probably become a saftey issue if it's allowed to get worse.
...Well, that's all that I've got. I know there was more I spotted, but I can't remember. I know this is just a big thread of complaining, but I needed to vent, and since I didn't get the opportunity to write a formal complaint about some of these issues yesterday, I thought this might be the next best step since I doubt that a cookie-cutter response from the Disneyland.com comment/complaint form isn't going to help anything. So here's hoping that Disney sees that things like this are noticed, even it is just by another AP holder...