Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Rejects - Unrejected!

There are a few hundred never-scanned slides in my old boxes - they were rejected for any number of reasons, and in many cases they will remain rejected. Too dark, too blurry, etc. But there are some that are worth a look now! All of today's photos had turned red, and all were taken aboard the Jungle Cruise.

This first one is from August 13, 1955 - Disneyland was less than a month old! This is certainly my earliest view of the back side of water. From what I understand, the Jungle Cruise was more of a serious affair back in those days - none of the corny jokes and puns that we are so familiar with today were used.

This next one is dated August 14, 1956. A year and a day after the first picture! It's not much of a photo, except perhaps as a "you are there" view from 62 years ago. The Skipper's outfit has changed a bit, though I'm not sure what it is supposed to resemble. Looks vaguely Guatemalan to me.

And finally, another view of the back side of water, this time from June, 1958. The silhouetted heads partially block second jungle launch that is viewing the very boring and horrible front side of water.


Nanook said...


Perhaps all those slides turned red, as "... all were taken aboard the Jungle Cruise". (I understand that sort of journey can be hard on photos-! A-hem...)

Isn't it amazing how 'the back side of water' looks just as fresh and youthful today as it did waaaaay back in 1955/1956. (I wish I could say I've worn just as well).

That second Skipper's outfit has a different style of stripes as the Imagineers were monkeying-around with the Helmholtz illusion as it applies to fashion. (Yeah... go ahead, look it up-!)

Thanks, Major.

Chuck said...

Those costumes are...interesting. The launch in the first photo seems to be skippered by a lost gondolier. I guess he needs something to do for the next 11 years as he waits for it's a small world to open.

Note the underside of the launch canopy is a solid color in 1955 but is striped by 1956. A quick look through the JC archive at Daveland doesn't give clear views of the underside in the first months of first year, but it looks to me like they all might have been solid at the beginning.

Not sure I agree, Nanook. The back side of water looks a lot less vigorous these days, and he doesn't get around as well as he used to. He hasn't been seen in Frontierland or Fantasyland in decades.

K. Martinez said...

I really like the silhouette pic. It kind of reminds me of one of the early black-and-white Disneyland episodes from the Walt Disney TV anthology show. Love all three of today's Jungle Cruise launch interior shots today. Thanks, Major.

Chuck, the stripes leapt off the underside of the launch canopy onto the Jungle Cruise skipper's shirt. Anything's possible at Disneyland!

Chuck said...

I was just reading the copy for Walt's dedication speech for Adventureland, and it definitely had a more serious tone than what we see today:

"Adventureland. Here is adventure. Here is romance. Here is mystery. Tropical rivers — silently flowing into the unknown. The unbelievable splendor of exotic flowers — the eerie sound of the jungle … with eyes that are always watching.

"This is Adventureland.”

Ken, that's the only logical explanation. They were probably freaked out by the "eyes that are always watching." ;-)

JC Shannon said...

Always a pleasure to see an attraction that hasn't gone the way of the dino. I loved this ride as a kid and an adult. Anyone from 2 to 102 could enjoy it. The hippos were always my favorite. I was always envious of the CM who got to steer the boat and tell all those corny jokes. Thanks Major.
Hey Nanook, do these stripes make me look fat?

Anonymous said...

I remember when very young, one of the shore attendants made a comment about there being snakes in the thatched cover over the queue. My mom just about fainted. She remained very nervous about this ride for many years, even though she knew the big animals were fake, there were still spiders, lizards and bugs, which might not be.

So yeah, there was a darker side to the JC once upon a time.

Fun comparisons of tiny changes over time.

Recent additions and changes here haven't been as noticeable or soul-crushing as the typical recent edits, with the notable exception of the utterly wretched "Jingle Cruise" overlay. That was like fingernails on the chalkboard. Fortunately it is removed after the holiday.


Melissa said...

They didn't have time to add jokes to the Jungle Cruise until they finished adjusting the horizontal hold.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, the heat, humidity, and pythons ALL contribute to slides turning red. They didn’t have a chance. OK, now I have to look up the Helmholtz Illusion!

Chuck, I do wonder why the striped shirts were chosen; why not something like a nice sweat-stained khaki, or an outfit along the lines of what Bogart wore in “The African Queen”? I also wonder if the canopies (on the outside) were originally solid colors, and striped canvas was added later? There’s one particular photo I’m trying to locate on my blog, but so far I can’t find it. Arg. And yes, old Schweitzer Falls is a mere trickle compared to the old days.

K. Martinez, yeah, that third shot makes me think of “Disneyland U.S.A.”, the wonderful “People and Places” film. You can watch it on YouTube.

Chuck, maybe audiences in the 1950’s were more inclined to accept the Jungle Cruise in a serious manner, and later, “hipper” crowds wanted something more jokey. I once went to see the 1931 version of “Dracula” (with Lugosi), and the audience laughed at everything, essentially ruining the experience. Wouldn’t you love to go through the Haunted Mansion’s stretching room without everyone looking at their phones, saying the spiel along with the Ghost Host, and screaming like children? I know I would!

Jonathan, I assume that there must be some sort of hierarchy among CMs, with Jungle Cruise skippers way up there. Maybe the railroad and monorail operators are the cool ones too? That being said, our friend Huck was a sweeper and he loved that job. Girls, friends, what could be better.

JG, ha ha, I wonder if that CM had any idea how much he freaked out your mom?? My great aunt was terrified of bats flying into her hair at night, no joke! I used to think, “Trust me, bats don’t want to be in your hair at all!”. The ill-conceived “Jingle Cruise” truly makes me worried about the upcoming changes to the Jungle Cruise once the movie (with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) comes out.

Melissa, I just watched “The Outer Limits”, somebody else has control of my TV. BUT WHO??

Melissa said...

I once went to see the 1931 version of “Dracula” (with Lugosi), and the audience laughed at everything, essentially ruining the experience.
Yeah, after I had similar experiences with House of Wax and The Shining, I've mostly given up on the idea of seeing vintage horror on the big screen.

Chuck said...

Major, looking at Daveland photos from August 1955, it looks like the tops were always striped just like the concept art, the boat from The Naked Jungle, and the tiny awning on the African Queen herself. And nothing reflects Walt's vision for a clean family park like sweat-stained khakis.

And yes, I would love to experience again the HM the way it was supposed to be experienced. The last time for me was probably October 4th, 1994, a cloudy school day during the off season (back when there was an off season). The Stretching Room wasn't filed to capacity, the guests were actually paying attention to the spiel (and several even chuckled in places), and there wasn't a huge crowd on the other end waiting to board doom buggies, which meant we could follow Paul Frees' voice down the hallway as intended. It was awesome. I miss that.

JC Shannon said...

If I had my choice of CM jobs, it would hands down have to be a Mine Train Engineer. I could eat lunch with the bears, and live in a house in Rainbow Ridge. As my wife is fond of saying, I grew old but never grew up!

Major Pepperidge said...

Melissa, wow, people even laughed through “The Shining”? My “Dracula” experience was so bad that I passed on a similar chance to watch “Bride of Frankenstein” at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery.

Chuck, it just seems odd to me that the outsides of the awnings would be striped, but the insides weren’t. Unless they were lined on the inside?? I just figured that it was one piece of cloth, but I guess not. The Skippers could still wear khakis, just leave off the sweat stains! My last great experience riding the Haunted Mansion is when I went with my girl, late on what had been a rainy day. There was only one other couple in the stretching room with us, and they walked ahead of us, leaving us in the portrait hall, just the two of us. It was AWESOME! I wish it had been the regular Mansion instead of the Holiday version, but I’m still glad I experienced it.

Jonathan, yes, that would be way up there if I could do any job from Disneyland, past or present. Monorail Pilot tho….!

Chuck said...

I wonder if the original awnings were lined, but it was cheaper to buy unlined replacements? Odd that they would wear out so fast, though.

Anonymous said...

Those of us working Adventure/Frontierland always thought we had a good thing going vs CMs from the other lands. Those of us who had speaking roles in the JC, Keel Boats as well as Storybook considered ourselves somewhat unique. Remember though that we rotated among other attractions, so many of us filled these positions at one time or another Those who worked RETLAW were sometimes considered a 'cut above'. We all seemed to find a 'home' that we enjoyed...except in the shooting galleries! KS