Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Disney almost did WHAT?

Did you know the future of Disney's atmosphere characters was in peril? Apparently it was. In an effort to hold down costs, the parks were planning to do away with the atmosphere characters, instead only having the "meet and greet" photo ops, where families wait in line to be photographed with their favorite characters.

How many different ways would this absolutely suck? Several, in my book.

One of the main ways California Adventure just didn't work in the beginning was that there were very few characters inhabiting it. We walked through the park and Ben, especially, was struck by the lack of character, which adds a special level of magic to a Disney park.

"I mean, how can this be Disney without at least a few Fab Fives walking around?" queried Ben, referring to Disney's five main characters: Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald and Pluto.

When you visit Disneyland, you expect to see the characters walking about, waving at the kids, posing for pictures and occasionally receiving a kiss from a cute little girl in pigtails (well, it's been a while since I've worn pigtails, but...). To see Minnie and Mickey walking down Mainstreet is to know that's where they live. Having atmosphere characters adds a certain layer to the space, creating more of a sense that you're in their particular world. You're in a place of wonder, where the fantastical can be found around every corner.

The news about this plan found its way to the Internet and the blogosphere and people went wild. Apparently many a well-placed post and email found its way to the suits at Disney and the cutback plan has been scrapped. Hopefully for good.

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