Walt Disney Studios Paris is building the upcoming Toy Storyland as the center piece of the New Generation Festival, a promotion celebrating the new generation of Disney Characters like Stitch, Princess Tiana, Monsters Inc, Ratatouille, and of course, Buzz and Woody. There are certainly some things to say about this new area and I can say, that I….am not a fan. To me, this land is a big fat strike out. Here are my Park Thoughts:
Strike 1: It’s a Toy Story
Toy Story is a fanastic movie but lately, the movie has been getting simply too much attention. In Disneyland Paris alone, their is already Buzz Lightyear Lazer Blast in a land where it does not belong, the Toy Story floats in both of the park’s parades, Once Upon a Dream Parade and Stars n’ Cars Parade.
Since Toy Story is already so heavily used in the parks, it is an obvious choice to go with a different movie of choice for a major addition. There are proven Disney classics like Beauty and the Beast, the Little Mermaid, Mary Poppins, Aladdin and several others that are much more deserving then the fairly recent Toy Story. I fear this is just a fab the park is following right now to make a quick buck instead of a long term investment by diversifying the park’s offerings.
Strike 2: The rides are Ugly….and it’s not hard to tell
Disneyland Paris, the original park at Disneyland Resort Paris is easily the most beautiful Magic Kingdom style park in the entire world. From the whimsical castle, the re-imagined Tomorrowland, and the fantastic Frontierland all makes the park unique with it’s beauty. One of the nicest things about the park is how each land is very separate. There is nearly no way you can see one land from another, this completely immerses guests in their environment. However, Toy Story Playland disrupts this science.
Picture from DLRPToday.com
The Green Army Men Drop Tower is the tallest structure in the land. Sadly, it is also one of the tallest structures in the park as well. Because of this, from beautiful Frontierland, you can now see an over sized toy tower over the tip of the tree line. And it is not only Frontierland. Immediately entering Walt Disney Studios you can see the huge green structure off to the right. And it gets worse, the second major attraction in the land, RC Racer, a huge Intamin Half Pipe, is also very noticeable just like the green giant. These structures lack the beauty that the original Disneyland Paris creations did have, and on top of that, they are much more noticeable then the prettier land marks.
Strike 3: Lipstick on a Pig
Sadly, that is all this is to me. These are a collection of Off the Shelf rides that are dressed up to look nice. That is not the Disney way. Disney is suppose to offer, unique, one of a kind experiences that push the envelope. I certainly do not think that the RC Racer is unique when I can ride the same thing here, or here, or here, or here. And the same can be said about the rest of the rides in the area.
Unfortunately, this seems to be becoming more common with Disney. In Disney’s California Adventure, instead of bull dozing a standard Wave Swinger that can be found 10 minutes up the freeway at Knott’s Berry Farm! Is that what Disney should be doing? Dressing up Cedar Fair and Six Flags style rides? I certainly think not. Sorry Disney, call me back when you start to pump out more quality attractions like Mystic Manor and Grizzly Gulch. Now those are real Disney rides.
Well that is 3 strikes, but sadly this new addition is not out and will be opening to riders in 2010. I am not saying this land is all wrong; Walt Disney Studios desperately needs a sense of place and atleast Toy Story Playland does offer that sense of location, but it certainly is not reaching anywhere near Disney’s fullest potential. Today is the 15th Anniversary of the Indiana Jones attraction opening in Disneyland. The revolutionary ride is one of the best attractions on this planet, but recently we have not seen Disney produce these kind of attractions so much any more. Hopefully this is just a hiccup and we will return to top notch attractions in the coming era. Let’s hope so.
These are my thoughts, you may or may not agree with them. Weather you do or don’t, leave a comment with your Park Thoughts below.