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  1. #1

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    Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studios Hollywood Trip Report

    What's Universal Hollywood this past Saturday and a spicy sausage have in common? They're both Packed, Hot and leave you stinky. Which is NOT to say either aren't enjoyable, but just not for everyone.

    Crazylegs invited Dusty, MonorailMan, Capt.Phoebus, Al Lutz, Dan, CoasterMatt, and myself to go spend the day out at Universal Studious Hollywood. We had all planned on taking it easy as we knew the heat would be oppressive. The only Must do's on this trip, for the group were T2:3D (MonorailMan and I had not been on it), and Back to the Future(Since it is closing on Sept 3rd.) Personally I was just dying to go through the new House of Horrors walk through attraction, but I was pretty much alone on this one.



    We got to Universal at about 11:00am and easily found great parking. Al and Dan had not shown up yet so we POPPED into Popcornopolis.



    MMMMMMMMMMMM

    Soon enough Al showed up and we headed to the Main gates.

    The crowds were HUGE!



    Looking from the ticket booths out to the crowds

    The line leading towards the ticket booths.

    The main gate set up was a HUGE mess. Several lines had three or four different off shoots merging into one entry gate. There were screaming children, a random person cutting in front of us saying "'scuse me." every couple of seconds and the heat was unbearable. I spotted some entry lines further off to the side where people seemed to be understanding the concept of a line.

    Getting to the gate it became evident that the problem with slow entry was on account of the tickets some visitors had. Visitors had to actually sign their tickets, then get their finger print scanned, then they were allowed in to the park. This was a logistical nightmare as many were unprepared. I mean really who would be?



    Presented by Skynet

    Anyway, we got into the park and I realized the Carnival barkers that once lined the entry corridor were ALL GONE!!!!!! AWESOME!


    The main entry way was still uber crowded

    Our group passed the House of Horrors and turned left to head straight for Terminator 2 :3-D.




    We entered the queue and were herded into a partially shaded and misty waiting area. Shortly after that we were led into the preshow.


    T2's waiting area




    SUPER!



    This show was actually pretty impressive but WAY over the top on the cheese factor.

    Exiting T2 we called Dan and he said he would meet us at the exit. After a bit of waiting he showed up.



    T2:The Gift Shop!




    Children played in the adjacent Coke water playground.


    The chlorine smell was too much


    Hey Dan! Happy Birthday!

    For lunch we looked around and realized the park was way too expensive and crowded to eat in so we decided to eat at Tony Roma's in City Walk. While the group went ahead to the restaurant, Capt. Phoebus and I took a quick tour of the House of Horrors.


    THIS WAS SO FREAKING FUN.








    I loved this part in particular. We had to navigate around body bags that were hung up. Some of them had LIVE contents!





    CP and I loved the Maze. We made our way out of the park and to Tony Roma's. However, due to "Kitchen Problems" the majority of the menu was not available. The group had opted for Karl Strauss Brewery.


    Apparently not the place for ribs


    The food was wonderful, inexpensive and was quick.



    We quickly headed back to the park after lunch.




    Monkypaw


    The Nickelodeon Splash zone. (CHOLRINE FUMES!)

    The next MUST DO was Back to the Future. This once wonderful ride is closing on Sept 3rd and we wanted a last ride through time. I taped it for Crazylegs, since she didn't ride, and she should have it up soon.


    Closing September 3rd


    A display to the left of the attraction counts the time down to it's closing.

    We then met back up with the non time travelers and decided on our final destination. The Tram tour.



    Dusty asked, "What will they call Doc Browns Chicken once Back to the future is closed?" Al answered, "Doc Browns leftovers."




    Care for a cold one while in line?


    Come down here so I can EATCHA!

    The queue was PACKED. Al said he had never seen it so full down there. After a brief wait in the disabled queue, we were asked to board.






    MonorailMan says, "Is there a part of this park that is not SCORCHING?!?!"

    The tram tour was fun, but again, very very hot. Although many of the set pieces were staged during our tour, it got one very authentic Hollywoodism right; Hurry up and wait.




    Into the King Kong scene






    Remember when a collapsing bridge was a HUGE THRILL?


    The Tram tour was running at FULL capacity and it's seams were showing. During most of the "unexpected" stops on the tour there was a two tram back up. We waited a good 15 minutes just to see the Fast and the Furious demo.








    CRRRRRRAP!

    Despite that all, the Tour guide was SPECTACULAR having to come up with material on the spot to entertain a mass of hot sweaty tour goers who were on the verge of death or revolt.




    Pray for us all



    During the tour a lady lost her shoe. Nobody knew a thing until we were about to enter the Earthquake exhibit. A security truck pulled up beside the tram and it's driver waved a shoe at the tour guide. The Tour guide asked the crowd, "Did Anybody lose a shoe?" A very happy lady in the back of our tram yelled, "ME! ME! " The smiling Security guard returned her shoe to her.


    Funny he wasn't driving a Toe Truck. Get it?












    Home!


    You can even see the body in the trunk!


    Into the Mummy tomb.




    Spinny tunnel curse!


    All done


    We finished up the tour and had to wait even to get off!

    Well it was now time to go.

    We quickly made it to the top of the Tram tour entrance and made out way out of the park.



    In the elevator up Crazylegs and I spotted some water on the floor. She denied any responsibility for it.

    On our way out Coaster Matt joined us and we walked around City Walk with him for a bit.


    The crowds going out.






    Some Bats day shopping


    Hi Pezz!




    Refreshments



    Well, it was great fun, but all good time come to


    THE END!!!!
    Last edited by Fishbulb; 08-19-2007 at 10:05 PM.
    "All my life I've had one dream, to achieve my many goals.
    Homer Jay Simpson



  2. #2

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Awesome! Thanks for sharing. Glad you guys survived the heat!

  3. #3

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    looks like a blast was had by all thanks for sharing your trip Fishy!
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  4. #4

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Awesome TR!!!

    We haven't been to USH in about 2 years. It's probably time to go back.


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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Glad you had a good time!! We almost went too! That would have been fun. But after seeing the crowds, kinda glad we didn't. But it would have been fun seeing you guys! Miss you!
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  6. #6

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Ooh, awesome trip report Fishy! I'm glad you guys had fun despite the heat and crowds. The House of Horrors walk-through looks wicked. I think the body bags would totally freak me out though.

    Thanks again for sharing your trip here!

  7. #7

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Thanks for the pics. We didn't get to USH in june, maybe next time we get out there.

  8. #8

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Thanks Fishy!

    As I have said before, it was hotter than a DVD player at a garage sale.

    Glad you had fun!

    Chad

  9. #9

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Looks like a hot time was had by all. It's sad really, about Back to the Future the Ride...what are all the back surgeons in the greater LA area going to do now?

  10. #10

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Thanks Fishy. We always have a good time at USH. But, I do have to say, for the last 5 years or so, it has largely been a nostalgia fest. Not all that much new each time.

    Last time we took the 4 nieces and nephews, bought the all day food passes for $25 and it was a waste. If one were to open the park and eat 3 meals there, or were blessed with tummies of huge capacity, maybe. Our favorite time was when we popped for the front of line passes. The CM's were quick to make sure we got right on all the rides, sometimes waving at us, or walking towards us when we didn't immediately see the FOL entrance.

    Good to know your lunch experience was good. We've eaten at serveral places at CityWalk, and always were pleased.
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  11. #11

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    I have had that same tour guide!!! he is pretty good.

  12. #12

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Looks like a wonderful trip! I should really get back out to USH one of these days... I haven't been in forever

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    That is the first time I have seen Universal packed. Glad you all made it out ok and still had fun.
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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Quote Originally Posted by Simply Mad View Post
    Looks like a hot time was had by all. It's sad really, about Back to the Future the Ride...what are all the back surgeons in the greater LA area going to do now?

    Well they still have Knott's Ghostrider to bring people in. Anyway, I will miss BTTF as it was a major part of my childhood. I don't like the way Universal gets rid of so many classic rides and they pick the best ones to get rid of also. BTTF and Kongfrontation (at USF) are so much better than Jaws at USF.

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    Re: Fishbulb's 08.18.07 Universal Studious Hollywood Trip Report

    Nice trip report! Love your commentary

    The lines tend to be long between 11am to 1pm-ish. Yes, the heat is unbearable- AND THEY MADE ME WORK IN THAT FOR MY ENTIRE 8 HOUR SHIFT!!

    I believe your T2:3D Kimberely Duncan is the same actress playing MC for the Wicked Wednesdays events.

    The head honchos of USH are very aware of the park's crowded eatries. They were walking around near the BTTF patio seats talking about where to put more seats- this includes Larry the USH president. HINT: BUILD SECOND FLOOR SEATING AREAS.

    Although I love the BTTF attraction myself, Universal Studios usually let their attractions fall into decay and poor maintentance... but as long as it's "good enough" they'll keep it going...sigh. Not sure if I read it here, but the long closed BTTF store is rumored to be a Kwik-E-Mart and Doc Brown's Chicken into a Krusty Burger.

    I swear, they have no idea what to do with that Mystery Machine Van. It's been hanging in the backstage between Waterworld and Universal Studio Store in Citywalk and sometimes the Lower Lot backstage between Jurassic Park and the Restrooms for like the last month. At first it was hanging around the Studio Tram's garage. I've been told depending on the weather and how the character actors feel and time of day and of the week, they'll bring out the van. In otherwords= whenever they feel like it. Scooby & Shaggy were on the Upper Lot around Cartooniversal then Lower Lot infront of Lucy Tribute.

    Almost the same thing with The Simpsons characters. They were between BTTF and the old BTTF store (The characters rest inside the store). Then moved to Hollywood Photoland. And now Madagascar characters are in the BTTF meet n greet location. I saw Beetlejuice a couple times this summer, but not on a regular basis like the Madagascar.

    During the tram tour recently, a person somehow lost their cell phone near Spartacus Square, I heard a thump, too. Amazingly, they remembered to pull the emergency cord at the center of the tram. Actually, it doesn't really do anything, just something for you to tug on for the tour guide to see. Took a while for our guide to realize this. Oh, you pull twice when they ask you to if it's a medical emergency . Luckily the golf cart that was coming by didn't smash up the cell phone and was returned.

    I always get people who say they haven't been to USH in the longest time. Not uncommon at all.

    I can tell you guys went to Crepes in the last couple shots.

    Anyone say hi to the lonely, underpaid, overworked, tired people doing vending infront of the park entrance or the battery/film canister shaped Kodak booth near the red carpet?

    "You're not thinking fourth dimensionally!" -Back to the Future

    "With this place, I wanted to give them something real, something that wasn't an illusion, something they could see and touch. An aim devoid of merit."
    -Jurassic Park

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