Friday, January 01, 2021

Two Beauties From Tomorrowland

HAPPY NEW YEAR to all your Junior Gorillas out there! I'm hoping it's a good one!

I wasn't sure what to share on this first day of the new year, and finally lamed out and went back to my scans of vintage Disneyland slides - but they are both dated from January, so they are sort of New Year-related. This first one is quite the stunner though, a beautiful closeup of the base of the TWA Moonliner (dated "January 1960"). That thing is just darned impressive - even at 1/3 (80-foot) scale. Just try to imagine how colossal it would have been at its full 240-foot height! 

In this photo the rocket is in the warm glow of the late-afternoon sun. The park is not exactly chockablock with guests! The Skyway terminal is in the distance to our right; there appears to be some scaffolding behind the Autopia sign, seen beneath the rocket's left landing strut. Any idea what that was for?


This next one is dated "January 1962", and shows a dynamic composition with the Monorail (Big Red!) heading toward us (I believe) in a graceful curve that mirrored the edge of the Submarine Lagoon. What a sight!

19 comments:

Nanook said...

Major-
There's no doubt about it, that rocket ship is awfully impressive-!

Thanks, and Happy New Year.

"Lou and Sue" said...

What a great way to start out the New Year, Major - with the Moonliner and the Monorail Swoosh!

Happy 2021 everyone!

TokyoMagic! said...

I assume that is a movie camera, mounted to that tripod in the first pic? Where is that footage, today?

Happy New Year, everyone!

Melissa said...

The Moonliner picture reminds me of those movie posters where we’re looking through somebody’s legs.

https://i.pinimg.com/originals/16/66/52/166652b11cf769a3880dca6ef18a1176.png

JC Shannon said...

Wow! What a great start to the year. I remember the first time I saw the Moonliner. I was 8 or 9, and standing next to it was awesome. The Monorail shot is a thing of beauty. Thanks Major.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, the Moonliner was powered by one million Estes rocket motors!

Lou and Sue, glad you like these!

TokyoMagic!, yes, I noticed that movie camera, I wonder if the film has managed to survive 60 years?

Melissa, I was trying to guess which poster you were going to link to, and did not expect 42 of them! For some reason, in my mind, I thought that “Bachelor Party” had a “through the legs” poster, but I was mistaken.

Jonathan, I’m sure I saw the Moonliner when I was a small child, but I have no memory of it. Unfortunately. And I always love a good look at the Monorail!

Andrew said...

Happy New Year, and thanks for the last 366 great posts, Major!

If you take a close look near that scaffolding behind the Autopia, you can see a sign for the Skyway. And Major, I don't have to merely imagine what the full-size Moonliner looked like...

Stu29573 said...

Wow, these are stunners!
On my flying Moonliner, that script "Moonliner" logo was the only part that was absolutely perfect. Why? Because I made the decal from a picture of the real deal.
There seems to be a planetary roving device to the right of the Moonliner...Soon, there would be many, many more...
Happy Mew Year everybody!

JG said...

Very appropriate to have TomorrowLand pics on NYD.

I remember the Moonliner, but pretty sure I never saw this livery. The McDonnell look just didn’t have the same panache, IMHO. Yes, this photo reminds me of a James Bond movie poster, but I can’t recall which one.

And, yes, that monorail is heading toward us, bearing many happy passengers back from adventures “outside the berm”.

Major, thanks for your hard work supplying our Disney habit.

Best wishes for the New Year to you, and all my fellow Junior Gorillas!

JG

Kathy! said...

Hey, get that stroller out of the way in the first pic! It’s so huge! Beautiful sense of movement in the Monorail photo. Happy 2021 everyone, and here’s to another year of posts from the Major. Hip hip hooray!

"Lou and Sue" said...

Major, after all these years, I’m surprised you still haven’t posted a picture of the Moonliner in flight - as it was another mode of transportation back to the Disneyland Hotel.

DrGoat said...

I'll add my appreciation of the Moonliner and it's beautiful logo. Nice touch on that Moonliner of yours, Stu. I guess if it's worth doing, it's worth doing right, as my aunt used to say.
I had always imagined that a 1/3 scale Moonliner would be just about the right size for a kid (like me) and maybe a cat. A cargo hold full of my Mom's lasagna, some Nestle's Crunch bars, 7-Up and a few cases of Chocolate Soldier. Perfect kid fuel for some fine adventures.
Sue, every time I tried to hitch a ride back to the hotel, I would get "sorry kid, we're full up".
Thanks Major, and hope everyone is having a first good day.

Major Pepperidge said...

Andrew, you are welcome! Um, you don’t have to imagine a full-sized Moonliner? And oh yes, I see that “Skyway” sign, maybe it was just before that attraction opened. Maybe.

Stu29573, I’d love to know how you made your decals! I once tried to make some using special decal paper and my ink jet printer, but they looked pretty lousy. I think a laser printer would have worked better. I wish I could figure out how to make crisp, clear, really nice decals at home, since it can cost big money to have them made at a printer.

JG, I agree that the TWA livery is the best, but the Douglas colors have grown on me over the years, and now I like it very much. Hm, a James Bond movie poster… ya got me, on that one. I’m glad you have enjoyed 2020s posts (most of them, anyway!), hopefully 2021 will be even better.

Kathy!, where are the other 40 strollers that should be in that image? Thanks for the kind words!

Lou and Sue, I guess you must have missed THIS POST. By the way, sorry about the Photobucket watermark on old posts… I discovered that Photobucket now wants me to pay over $180 a year for them to remove it. More than twice what I used to pay, and I don’t even really use them anymore.

DrGoat, it’s interesting to look at very early Tomorrowland concept artwork to see what the Moonliner might have looked like; I think they chose the best, sleekest, coolest design. Don’t you want some of Pillsbury’s “Space food sticks” with you on your journey? I used to love those things. Peanut butter, chocolate fudge, vanilla… you don’t need anything else! Did you ever used to hitchhike? I never did!

"Lou and Sue" said...

Major, I do remember seeing that photo—it’s definitely one of your best creations! Btw, when you click on that photo, the Photobucket watermark disappears.

Regarding Space food sticks, I recall loving the chocolate mint ones.

Fun post today!

DrGoat said...

Major, I never had that kind of adventure in my soul. Too many unknowns for my liking I suppose. Hitchhiking was frowned upon back then in most circles. Usually once a teen got his driver's license in Tucson (it was either 16 or 18), there was no need for it. I did have an acquaintance in high school who came from a wealthy family, an heir to McDonnell Douglass somehow, and he hitchhiked everywhere, so I guess it has to be in your soul to do so.
I do love that pic of the Moonliner taking off! Well done Major. That'll clear out the crowd pronto.
I feel bad because I don't remember Space Food Sticks. I looked them up and they came out in the early '70s so I don't know how I missed them. I was 23 by then so perhaps I was busy being 23.

Stu29573 said...

I use Testors decal paper and an inkjet printer. You have to remember to seal them with spray sealer (they sell the paper and sealer together, or you can.just get the paper). To save on decal paper, I run a test page of regular paper, and then tape a small bit of decal paper over the image and run it again. You have to make sure you put the paper in the same way, of course! One last tip: the paper comes in both clear and white backed. If your decal has white in it, you'll have to use the white backed, as most printers don't print white.

Major Pepperidge said...

Lou and Sue, it’s funny, I did two other April Fools images that I like very much (and others that I like less), but the first one really was the best in my opinion. I didn’t even know Space Food Sticks had a chocolate mint flavor!

DrGoat, growing up I was convinced that hitchhiking was a bad idea! I’m sure that most of the time it was perfectly fine, but all you need is one crazy person. Now that I listen to the true crime podcasts, I would definitely tell every girl or woman to never hitchhike. Yikes. When I lived in Huntington Beach, I knew older kids who thumbed rides everywhere, but mostly to the beach, which wasn’t even that far away. Don’t feel bad about not remembering Space Food Sticks! They were just a fun goofy snack that nowadays reminds me of that specific place in time.

Stu29573, gosh, I used Testors decal paper (still have some), and the spray sealer, but mine looked terrible. The ink jet ink kind of beaded up on the paper instead of looking smooth and professional. Yes, I printed on the right side of the paper! ;-) I wound up using the decal in question, and it’s “just OK”, but I still want to make a better example. Someday I’ll try again.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Major, yep, chocolate mint Space Food Sticks were really good, imo. See HERE for the different flavors and when they came out. When you click on that site, you'll see there'a a LOT of good stuff on that site, including a list of 129 ways to get a husband (from the 1950s) - hahahaha! One of the 129 ways is to "get a sunburn"?!?!. I have an old 1950s book that gives young brides some marital advice - it's hilarious!

Stu29573 said...

Lol, yeah that will make it bead. I've heard that if the paper is old or has become hot it can have that effect because the layer that accepts the ink breaks down. Is this true? Heck, I don't know, but it sounds good...