Sunday, October 31, 2010

Disneyland - Death in the Magic Kingdom - Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween Jungleteers!

For some reason, the holiday got me thinking about death - death as portrayed at the Happiest Place on Earth.

Sounds like a strange juxtaposition, but as I considered the subject I realized death lurks in almost every attraction in some direct or indirect manner.

The Haunted Mansion: the whole attraction devoted to death and the spirits of the afterlife. This is a no-brainer.

The Pirates of the Caribbean: guess who tells no tales? There's a skeleton around almost every corner and pirates are literally shooting guns and cannons at you trying to kill you.

The Jungle Cruise: my last crew did not laugh at my jokes---you can see them over there in the canoe to our right. From the way they're smiling, it looks like they finally got the joke.

Indiana Jones: skeletons, why did there have to be skeletons? The dead are omnipresent in the Temple of Mara.

Tarzan's Treehouse: what happened to Tarzan's parents??? Is that a skeleton by the old phonograph?

Splash Mountain: those vultures seem to be anticipating Brer Rabbit's demise---"If this is your laughing place, how come you're not laughing?"

Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln: an entire attraction devoted to our most famous martyred President, who presided over America's bloodiest domestic conflict.

Snow White's Scary Adventures: remind me not to let the Wicked Queen make me a prisoner in her dungeon---great for weight loss, bad for longevity. Oh yeah, don't forget the whole "Sleeping Death" spell. Steer clear of apples.

Peter Pan: Skull Rock stands as a dark symbol of what awaits those who leave "Neverland."

Mr. Toad's Wild Ride: ouch! Hit by a train and we're off to...hell. Nice. Wait, not so nice!

Innoventions: somebody killed America Sings! Seriously, though, a cast member actually died on this attraction back when it was America Sings.

Sleeping Beauty Castle: more Sleeping Death---being a Disney princess can be such a drag. The hair, the make up, the shoes, the small rodents everywhere, the step-mom.

Pinocchio: we get swallowed by Monstro! Oh yeah, and getting turned into a donkey after a night on Pleasure Island can be considered the ultimate buzz-kill. Thank goodness for Blue Fairies.

Storybookland Canal Boats: Uh oh, eaten by Monstro again. Good thing he sneezed his tail off.

It's A Small World: believe it or not, you'll find the "Day of the Dead" and a skull or two---even in this realm of singing children.

Disneyland Railroad: millions of dinosaurs---extinct.

Thunder Mountain: another dead dinosaur.

The Shootin' Arcade: Boot Hill, skeletons, ghost riders in the sky.

Winnie the Pooh: heffalumps and woozles---not to mention the heads of Max, Buff and Melvin.

The Matterhorn: the remains of the Wells expedition---and a none-too-friendly Yeti.

Space Mountain: not so much---though at Halloween Time it has its ghosts.

The Columbia, the Peoplemover, Big Thunder, America Sings, the Matterhorn, the Rivers of America and the Monorail have each claimed real lives, unfortunately, over the course of time.

Like any good fairy tale, there is a dark and dangerous side to the fantasy.

Now, as they say, look alive.

Hope your Halloween was fabulous.

As for Jungle is "101," all I can say is...

...hurry baaa-aack!

...hurry ba---aaaaack!