It's no secret that Disney's Hollywood Studios isn't exactly the Mouse's most loved park. It's got the lowest attendance of all four WDW parks. It was opened quickly, cheaply, and with little to do. And most of all, it receives a lot of hate on this board...a lot. That being said, it may come as a surprise that when I received, as a gift, two one-day one-park Disney tickets, I chose to spend the day at DHS.
Now, I have many means of getting into the park so it's not a huge deal when I come into contact with some tickets. And even though the fact that they weren't parkhoppers definitely was a bummer, it really wasn't a big deal because I know I'll be getting in again soon for free. But of course, no trip to Disney should be taken for granted so I spent quite a bit of thought deciding where to spend my day. And Hollywood Studios was my choice.
But here's the real surprise...I loved it. I really had a great time, and so did my guest. And I had to share my feelings about it on this board because this is where I see it get the most flack. First off, I want to address the half-day park concern...not at all. Granted, the Sunday on MLK weekend drew some crowds, but I was never bored once from about 10 to 7 (the park's official hours were 9 to 8 but we really could've stayed later if the crowds weren't so heavy). After getting Fps for Toy Story, we rode the Great Movie Ride, the best Disney dark ride IMO to date. The sets are so incredibly elaborate and the concept (live narrators with hijackings and interactions with AA's) is always astounding to me, and I always find new details or something to marvel at. After an early lunch at Sci-Fi Drive-In (great concept for a restaurant with good food), we headed over to Tower of Terror (one of the world's best thrill rides; stellar theming, solid storyline, great atmosphere, and best of all, super fun ride). After riding Star Tours (a ride well-deserving of its praise), we headed over to the Backlot Tour, where I was a little nervous about spending 45 minutes after hearing sub-par reviews...however the ride really wasn't bad I thought. It was interesting, if not just to see the backstage areas of the park. And I think Catastrophe Canyon is pretty underrated, as is the look inside the wardrobe room, and the vehicle props. We also saw Lights, Motors, Action, which blew me away. Wow, the stunts were just incredible and there were honest to God a few places where I gasped--the stunts were pretty friggen cool!
Then we went on a riding spree using the Fps we had collected through the day, hitting Toy Story, Rock n Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror back to back to back. Again, these are all just great attractions. By then, we got some ice cream and it was about 6:45...I didn't want to leave but the lines weren't letting up. Still, I could've seen myself spending lots more time there, and the day went by super fast. Even without any lines, I would love to have gone on Tower of Terror at least five more times, and maybe Rock n Roller Coaster a few times too. Oh, and Star Tours because I've never seen the Death Star sequence which is really bugging me lol. Not to mention that I would've really liked to see MuppetVision 3-D, and wouldn't have minded taking a peek in the Walt Disney exhibit, the Art of Animation pavilion, or Indy (though I generally agree that that one's outdated).
Anyway, I really wanted to come out and say that for a park-hopper lover like me, my attention span was easily satisfied by a full day at DHS, commonly known as a half-day park. And I realllllly think that The Great Movie Ride, Backlot Tour, and especially Lights Motors Action are severely underrated attractions undeserving of the flack they receive. Considering all the shows and overall length of each attraction you can easily spend a full day here and have a blast doing so. Also, please don't add Cars Land. I know the place is a sort of jumbled mess thematically but it works as it is...adding a big desert themed to Arizona would really make things worse I think...it just doesn't fit. If you really need Cars, put an attraction in Pixar Place.
Well, that's my review. Thought I'd get some positivity out there and show the underdog some love.