Thursday, November 07, 2013

The Jungle Cruise, March 1958

The Jungle Cruise is a "must do" attraction on my once-every-two-or-three-years visits to Disneyland! This is one ride in which I welcome regular changes and upgrades (unlike all other rides, where any alterations make me roll around on the floor, screaming and weeping).

Waiting in line is usually not a problem, since I could watch the jungle launches come and go all day. The Tahitian Lanai (just visible in the background) would be one of my favorite places to dine... if it was still there. 

There's the bull elephant's mother-in-law. I think. She looks a lot like her son-in-law; no offense, ma'am. I don't know about you, but the last boat I was in was full of stiffs, almost nobody laughed or reacted at all, even though our skipper was good. So I decided that I had to make up for it and laughed enough for 40 people. Ha! Ha! Hee! Like that, only a lot more.


Nanook said...


It would certainly be too bad if today's "sophisticated" 'guests' feel the spiels are so "low-brow" as to miss all the fun that they're intended to invoke from them. But nothing surprises me anymore. In the meantime...

"Here's something you don't see everyday... but I do-!". "I'm sure he'll get the point". "Bottoms up-!" "...Business is shrinking". "...And those crazy southern California freeways". And so on.

Thanks, Major.

K. Martinez said...

In reference to your comment about welcoming changes and upgrades to the Jungle Cruise, I'm with you on that. It's as good today, if not better than it's ever been.

It's still my favorite original attraction and despite the rerouting of the river to accommodate Indiana Jones Adventure, I love the whole worn and grungy look the jungle boats took on when Indiana Jones moved in next door.

The two-story boathouse queue with it's 1930s big band music playing overhead is a structure and experience worthy of any 'E' ticket attraction queue line. It's an attraction that's been plussed and has aged very well.

While I admit the skippers are a big part of this attraction, I'm probably one of those stiffs who doesn't laugh at it much. I suppose once in a while I could get with the program and belt out a "Ha ha, he he" or a "ho ho".

Anonymous said...

"Only the yellow cushions float..."

I agree, this may be the one major attraction that has changed least since my salad days. I used to think the apes trashing the camp were added as part of Tarzan, but it seems they were added before that.

Anyway, it's mercifully free of damage from the Pressler era, and the 2 story queue is a great move, there isn't much pre-show, but the boats themselves are enough.

I recall when I was a boy, the quayside announcer used to warn about snakes in the thatch overhead, they didn't do that last trip.

I have a copy of that new music soundtrack loop, over an hour before repeating. It's really great.


Nanook said...

"Ha ha ha, ho ho ho and a couple of la-de-da's..." Hey - wait a minute, I think I've mixed up both the properties and the studios. Oh, no matter - The Land of Oz - Adventureland - What does it matter when you're having jolly-good fun-?

K. Martinez said...

@JG -

The safari camp with overturned jeep was added during a revamp in 1976 along with a lot of other scene ideas imported from the Jungle Cruise in Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom. So that scene was actually created in 1971.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I know that on at least a few occasions, if I happened to be sitting far back, it would sometimes be hard to understand some of what the Skipper said, as if he was talking through a Pringles can. However, I think a lot of the people had either heard most of the jokes before or just weren't that engaged.

K. Martinez, the worn and grungy look makes more sense, but I do miss the old colorful striped tops and clean white boats. As far as responding to the bad puns, I sort of feel like the guests are part of the show in a way, but maybe I'm mistaken.

JG, I am pretty sure you are right, the Gorillas that were "trashing the camp" were there before Tarzan. I'm sure that jokes come and go all the time - at least I hope they do, it's always nice to hear something new.

Nanook, as long as they don't incorporate anything from that overblown eyesore that came out a year or two ago. What a terrible movie!

K. Martinez, thanks for the info!

Melissa said...

Sometimes a big old groan is easier than a laugh, and since it's drawn out it gives the sluggards among the passengers a change to join in belatedly.

The most recent skipper was the most entertaining I ever remember having. She was an adorably petite blond girl, but she had an incongruous husky voice with a sort of backwoodsy accent, and the most straight-faced delivery I've seen in a long time. Big props to Skipper Nicole.

Anonymous said...

I'll vouch that the gorilla scene was WAY before Tarzan. Mid 70s. All the jokes were 'tounge-in-cheek' intended. Groans were common...your guests WERE listening! Grad nites were different...the 'blue spiels' came out and a good time was had by all since we couldn't get away with that stuff under normal operations. It was an all male fraternity back them. We tried a few (3) girls but many guest complaints were made...they couldn't be heard and there was a perference for a male guide. The new load structure is definitely a big plus from my day, the loss of the Terrace is a HUGE loss. Ths sounds of the performances made a great backgound environment to Adventureland.
--Former Skipper.