Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Disney XIII

Next day we went to Disney Hollywood Studios; until very recently it was MGM studios and if I call it that, know that those two are the same. Enough with disclaimers, on to falling elevators and muppets.

You enter the park down Hollywood Avenue, passed lots of themed shops. The Hollywood Tower Hotel, Tower of Terror is at the end of the block but I can’t really see the building from the beginning of the block. The Tower of Terror is an elevator ride. The fa├žade looks ill-maintained or, I think that’s what it’s supposed to be. The card I got on the first day allowed me to use alternate entrances or fastpass lines but sometimes I like to use regular lines if the queue area has interesting scenery. I have no doubt that I miss most of the scenery anyway but what I can see is good enough for me. Tower of Terror is one such place. There are old boilers and the like scattered beyond the barred area of the queue. When you get to the end of the queue, you proceed through doors into another room of the supposed hotel. There’s a TV in there where Rod Serling comes on and gives a narration of what happened at the hotel. I won’t tell you what he says, if you want to know, you’re going to have to go somewhere else. There’s some illumination in the queue area but it’s completely dark in the pre-show room except for the TV. When it’s over, thunder cracks and pitch blackness descends; the doors open and your path to the Twilight Zone is almost complete. I usually grab Mark’s arm to make sure I don’t try to go through the entrance or a wall. You proceed through a little line and then the cast member assigns you to a specific elevator. You go into the elevator, strap yourself…, “hey wait, I thought this was an elevator?” The doors close and you go up like a normal elevator; the doors open and you look out onto a hallway, with people walking down it. Then lightning strikes and electricity sizzles in the hallway; the people turn to ghosts and the hallway slowly changes to a starscape. The window at the end of the hall remains unbroken, despite the starscape but then, you hear glass shatter and it breaks. The doors close and you go to the top; the doors open and you proceed along a track, with scenery changing along the way. Then you enter the drop shaft and the real fun begins. SNAP!!!

If you survive, it’s on to a nice, calm limo ride to an Aerosmith concert. You walk through the queue, where there’s some stuff to see and hear but not that much. Then you come to the preshow area, where you get briefed on arrangements for the concerts but then you are told you are almost last. You then proceed to the boarding area and your superstretch limos. You get in and the restraints…, “Why do I need restraints for a calm limo ride. The limos start moving, music starts blasting and you roar your way into the night. You go from 0 to 60 in 2.8 seconds and have close encounters with signs and loops.

Hello to Jennifer from Ireland and thanks for reading.

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