On one hand I'm impressed with the improvements they've made to certain WDW attraction queue lines. The Haunted Mansion line is pretty cool and helps set the tone for the adventure ahead without spoiling too much of the fun. And, if you are a Mansion purist, you can simply bypass the interactive elements and move along without participating in them. While I haven't seen the improvements to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad's line for myself, from what I've seen on the message boards I think that they went overboard (...really the mine owner's last name is Bullion????).
The Little Mermaid queue jumps the shark (no pun intended) in that the crabs are cute at first but get repetitive and then, ultimately, annoying after you see them like 25 times. It's almost as annoying as having to wait 60 minutes for this C-ticket experience in E-ticket's clothing. I'm not really sure what the Space Mountain queue is trying to accomplish, and I've never really had a wait or been tempted to explore them but at first glance it seems as lame as the attempt at incorporating audio into the attraction. I know Pooh and Soarin' are "interactive" as is Dumbo and now here comes a PotC interactive queue as well. I guess these efforts by Imagineering could be viewed as "plussing the show" such that they are improving the ride infrastructure if not the ride itself and I guess that's OK but where is all of this going to end and is it really even necessary??
New ride construction aside, instead of spending what is probably $2,500,000 + per queue to design, build and install these elements why are they not focusing on adding new park attractions instead. Is the My Magic + expected to really book attractions such that the wait is so intolerable that Disney feels these interactive elements must be installed to pacify guests? Or, is this just another ego trip on behalf of certain management and Imagineers that think what quests want is interactive games and experiences (cheap fun house stuff). Quite honestly, I think these elements tend to bottle neck the ride line as opposed to keeping the line flowing - it seems counter productive to me to install these. Just like the restaurant menus in the theme parks are kept to limited choices in order to turn the tables over it would seem the ride lines should use these interactive elements in a scarce fashion as well.
Ultimately, what's Disney's end game with this? Can I expect to find an interactive queue for the Jungle Cruise, Hall of Presidents and Stitch's Encounter? If not, then there is inconsistency? Meanwhile, up the road, construction is progressing simultaneously in one park on three significant enhancements - short term Transformers and Simpsons offerings and only a year or so out the more incredible Potter expansion. What is Disney thinking? People don't come to theme parks to see the lines they come to ride the rides - honestly who is running Disney these days?
What are your thoughts on these lines? What's the official reason?