Thursday, September 05, 2013

It's a Small World, August 1982

While waiting in line for "The Happiest Cruise That Ever Sailed 'Round The World", the mechanical clock began clanking and boinging, and a parade of children from around the world emerged from the façade. This photo doesn't look too different from older examples, but more color - mostly shades of blue - was gradually being added to some of the shapes. Eventually the entire thing was covered in pastel pinks, blues, yellows, and all manner of Skittles colors. Some people preferred it that way, but I am glad that it returned to it's original scheme a few years ago.

This from inside IASW featuring India was always one of my favorites, mostly becaused of the cool four-armed shadow puppet moving mysteriously behind the screen at the top of the steps. 


Nanook said...

It's a world of laughter, a world of tears. It's a world of hope, it's a world of fears...

Melissa said...

One of my favorite parts of a GDB post is the peoplewatching.
I love the forerunners of the Miami Vice look that would soon sweep the nation in their pastel Hawaiian shirts, and the white trousers on the guy in the pink shirt. It was a cool look, but hard to keep clean.
And the sad-looking girl in the white veil! Is she re-creating a happy ending look from a classic princess movie, just raiding her sister's old First Communion gear for pretty shiny stuff, or both? I don't remember the whole Bibbidi Bobbodi Boutique/dressing like a princess for a hot day in the park phenomenon having started yet in 1982, but I was too busy lining up for the Jungle Cruise to notice.
On second look, I think the man in the pink shirt may be a lady.
Is the man in the white floral shirt just scratching his head, or making the international sign for, "Just shoot me now?"
Looks like the boy in the red tee is wearing a little yellow hard hat. I don't blame him. You never know when one of those balloon kids in the finale room is gonna jump. ofr one of those crazy suns fly off its moorings.
If I had a kid, and I carried him around on my shoulders, I'd get a seven-foot long trenchcoat, put it over both of us, and peek out the gaps between the buttons to see my way around, just to weird people out. The kid would also have to wear a bowler hat and mustache, and carry fake hands on sticks. But he'd understand, because he'd be my kid. Either that, or he'd stop asking for piggyback rides in a damn hurry.

The Indian/Balinese/Indonesian shadow puppet in IASW always makes me think of Neefa Feefa the Eyeball Dancer from Pontoffel Pock, Where Are You?

K. Martinez said...

Never cared for the reversed queue they did on IASW. Less dramatic unfold when waiting in line. Same with the Disneyland Monorail and Tarzan's Treehouse. Traffic flow maybe?

Love the Thai Balinese dancers photo of IASW.

Alonzo P Hawk said...

Never cared much for the blue color scheme. Right now I would trade a blue IASW for early 80's ticket prices every day of the week and twice on sundays.

Where is Mr. Peabody's way back machine when you need it.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I wonder if that song is where the band "Tears for Fears" got its name. Also… I am impressed that you made those little musical notes!

Melissa, I agree that looking at the people is at least half the fun of these vintage photos. Yes, pink-shirt man is carrying a purse. The man in the floral print shirt was just stung by a bee, but it was a Disney bee so it didn't hurt too much. I think the little yellow hard hat is just a baseball cap (or a trucker's cap), but can't be certain! "Neefa Feefa the Eyeball Dancer"?! Looks like Doctor Seuss?

K. Martinez, I have heard talk about the reversed queue, but don't remember the old version. Do you really enter where you used to exit?

Alonzo, the blue color is nowhere near as bad as the pink-yellow-blue (etc) scheme. I'm sure in the 80's people complained about the high prices at Disneyland - little did they know….

Melissa said...

Oops, looks like I borked one of my info links. Neefa Feefa is from Pontoffel Pock, Where Are You?, a TV special written by - you guessed it - Dr. Seuss.

The whole thing is available on YouTube. The songs are catchy, and Neefa's not a bad dancer.

K. Martinez said...

@Major -

Yes, you now enter where you used to exit, but it was changed quite a while ago. The queue structure is mostly the same except the old entry queue "180-turn" bridge was modified to connect the Toy Shop so you exit right into it.

In the old version, two lines formed in front in a queue area under the old blue "Bank of America" sign. From there it lead into the "180-turn" queue bridge which in turn lead to steps descending onto the central platform. From there everyone loaded onto the boats from the same central platform on the left or right side depending on which queue line you stepped into. At the end of the ride, guests would exit the boats onto separate platforms and exit ramps out into the east side of Small World Plaza.

Now with it reversed, both lines have separate entry queues (the old exit ramps) and platforms with automatic safety gates to prevent accidents when loading the boats. After the ride is over, all riders exit onto the same central platform towards the Toy Shop.

I hope that all made sense.

Omnispace said...

The original layout of the queue made the boarding process more centralized though it did tend to feel more congested. Although it is not as direct, the reverse queue is a bit nicer as it passes more through the garden areas in front of the facade.

JG said...

Maybe there was some element of managing and "hiding" a longer queue also, similar to what was later done at Autopia.

But I always thought the primary reason for changing the queue was to route the exiting visitors through the newly built Mattel-sponsored (then)toy shop.

That was an expensive stop for us then. But I wouldn't trade the memory for the money now. On my desk, I still keep the Hot Wheels car my son picked out. He long ago abandoned it, but I remember that trip from that toy. I think my daughter might still have the Barbie something or other.

Back then, there was some pretense of having the toys match the themes of the attraction, but our last visit, the stand had the same generic schlock available in Frontierland and Main Street.