Tag Archives: Fantasmic AP Event

Fantasmic! And GIVEAWAY!

First of all, don’t forget to enter the popcorn bucket GIVEAWAY! Details at the bottom of this post right here. Click on these words. To get to the post. Contest closes at 11:59pm PST on Thursday, May 17th!

So Fantasmic! turns 20 this year. Wow! I very distinctly remember when Fantasmic! opened. It was a huge deal back then. You know, 20 years ago, before we had flying cars and teleporters.

Which is to say exactly like Disneyland is right now, except it was less expensive to get in and the popular hairstyles required significantly more hair product than they do now.

Anyway, at the time it was revolutionary. The first show to project on mist screens of water–brilliant!

You saw this in the last entry, if you were paying attention

It’s still kind of revolutionary now. Also, when Fantasmic! first opened, the dragon was basically a head on a crane that moved around and spit out fire and sparklers and tried to look really intimidating. Except in its very early days, the dragon caught itself on fire, and a quickie repair was done with what looked like a bunch of black GLAD trash bags. The first time I saw Fantasmic! was a few days, no more than a week, after this unfortunate incident happened. So it was totally awesome but it did leave you thinking, “Are those GLAD trash bags?”

Anyway, Fantasmic! got a new dragon.

So there I am at the Annual Passholder event which I thought was going to be not very crowded but turned out to be crowded. About an hour before the show I staked out my spot. I actually got a great spot for viewing the show, just a few people behind the rope so I could see it.

Waiting for the show to start

Unfortunately, as you will see, I was not standing in an ideal area for photographing the show. There were a few lights pointed directly at me, and a nice big light post in my way. Oops.

Also, I should probably mention that Fantasmic takes place on Tom Sawyer’s Island and the Rivers of America and it’s a show with Mickey Mouse and stuff. The show is basically Mickey Mouse’s dream and his imagination and stuff and then a cool dragon gets killed and the river light on fire and Beauty and the Beast sail by dancing on a barge.

Not necessarily in that order.

Given that this is the 20th anniversary, the opening of Fantasmic! included a montage of coverage from the original opening of Fantasmic!. This included news coverage, construction shots, and so on.

A reporter

A construction shot

I think these short snippets really capture what a Big Deal Fantasmic! was when it opened. Nobody had done anything like it before. Showing movies on a screen of water? Combining live people with all of that stuff? Fireworks? A dragon that may or may not light itself on fire? GENIUS!

What was really nice was that the end of the intro gave a roll of credits for everyone involved in the original production.

As you can clearly see in this picture

The story is essentially this:

Mickey Mouse kicks the show off by directing the water.

Whee!

Then the screens show pictures of Mickey as the Sorcerer’s Apprentice. At this point you’re part of Mickey’s imagination, and it’s apparently kind of a strange place to be.

Barges of neon colored monkeys go by, while on the island, live dancers take the shape of different flowers and bring out Kaa, the big snake from The Jungle Book.

And it’s all blacklit and things

Naturally this leads to a rather hallucinogenic rendition of Pink Elephants On Parade from Dumbo, and the mist screens feature really strange-looking and somewhat scary dancing elephants just like from Dumbo the move.

From this, a clear segue proceeds to Pinocchio, where you see Pinocchio and a couple of dancers hanging on strings.

Not a bad picture, actually

Back on the mist screens, we see Jiminy Cricket swirling around in the water with a lot of bubbles looking completely panicked before being swallowed by Monstro, who is also big and scary. While Monstro is just on the screen, there are a lot of splashes and stuff in the water that make you think that Disneyland has imported Shamu from SeaWorld or something. But fear not, it’s just an illusion.

But next comes the Columbia!

It’s a nice big boat, and I haven’t been on it for years

Onboard are Peter Pan and the gang, fighting the good fight against Captain Hook and the evil but bumbling pirates.

Take that!

Captain Hook gets quite the stunt role in this feature.

As Theo would say, “there he is–up there!”

However, the Columbia is followed by Captain Hook’s old nemesis…

The goofy-looking crocodile

Then comes the dancing princes and princesses on barges! Obviously! The colors go from plain blue to multi-colored. Here’s a collection of images:

Yeah, sorry, my photography kind of stinks there.

Anyway, then the evil queen from Snow White shows up, and boy is she pissed.

She’s in the middle there–I swear

She gets her panties in a bundle after this guy:

The mirror

says that pretty much everyone else is more attractive than she is. So she turns herself into the old hag and then curses poor Mickey and turns his dream into a “nightmare Fantasmic!”

Then Ursula joins the party.

Here to gloat, are you?

Ursula turns into that really scary demon dude from Fantasia, which is freaky.

Then I have a number of pictures that look like this:

I AM AN AWESOME PHOTOGRAPHER!!

Maleficent comes out, and she’s a total badass.

With, like, pyrotechnics and stuff

This is the dragon that formerly looked, at one point, to be covered in GLAD trash bags. I think this one’s a big improvement.

The dragon is all into fire and stuff

This dragon is affectionately known to fanatics as Murphy. As in Murphy’s Law, since Murphy the dragon tends to have a lot of things go wrong with it.

More of Murphy

Mickey vanquishes Murphy with his sword. Murphy is not pleased.

Ahhhhhhh…CHOO!

Once Mickey does away with Murphy, the other villains on the projected screen die some sort of off-stage but surely horrible death.

I’m melllllltttiiinnnnggggg!!!!!

To celebrate, the Mark Twain comes out, sprinklers a’blazin’.

It’s so jolly!

The Mark Twain is driven by none other than Steamboat Willie himself!

And there are other various Disney characters onboard.

It’s like a totally awesome party.

Then Mickey comes back and he’s like “some imagination, hunh?” and he directs all kinds of cool pyrotechnics.

And then…

MICKEY!!!

And that, ladies and gents, is Fantasmic!

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

Fantasmic! 20th Anniversary Annual Passholder Event–GIVEAWAY!!!

Fantasmic! opened on May 13, 1992, which doesn’t really seem possible to me, since I still consider it a “new-ish” show. I mean I also consider Splash Mountain (Fall 1992) to be new-ish and Indiana Jones Adventure (Spring 1995) to be really new-ish, so basically what I’m saying is that my Disneyland brain froze in 1991 and everything afterwards is new.

And when “new” means 21 years…well let’s not think about that too hard.

Anyway, Disneyland threw an Annual Passholder-exclusive event celebrating the 20th anniversary of Fantasmic! and I got to go on Monday the 14th. (the other dates are the 15th, 21st, and 22nd)

A celebratory banner not exclusive to the AP event

This event was similar to the Soundsational AP Event in that it was open only to annual passholders who had RSVP’d in advance. We could get our wristbands anytime after noon, but the event actually started at 10pm and went to 1am with a showing of Fantasmic! at 11:30. Only Frontierland, Adventureland, and New Orleans Square were open for attractions.

And the show’s actual name is Fantasmic! with the exclamation point, so I’m not just throwing! that! in! there! for! fun! Because that’s irritating.

Other fun things about the Fantasmic! event are the commemorative t-shirts

The commemorative t-shirt, featured by my excellent photography

and a hoodie with the same design. It was quite cool, and the silver parts were all sparkly and stuff, but I’m cheap and it was expensive, and besides, black shirts just show all the dog hair leftover from this guy:

Digory the beagle

The other exclusive merchandise available was the popcorn bucket, which is the subject of the GIVEAWAY!!! See below.

There was also special food!

See if you can read this!

If you can’t read it, the menu was:

Churro Cart (Frontierland, New Orleans Square): Churro with Spicy Chocolate Sauce
French Market: Popcorn Shrimp Basket with Slaw, French Dip Sandwich with N’Orleans Chips, Apple Yam Salad, Fantasmic! Cupcake
The Golden Horseshoe:  Premium Chili Cheese Dog
Harbor Gallery: Premium Chili Cheese Dog, Bacon Mac-n-Cheese Dog
Lemonade Cart (New Orleans Square): Cinnamon Rolls
Mint Julep Bar: Blueberry Blast Drink
Popcorn Cart (Frontierland, New Orleans Square): Souvenir Popcorn Bucket
River Belle Terrace: Open Face Turkey Sandwich, Open Face New York Steak Sandwich, Fantasmic! Cupcake
Ship to Shore: Cinnamon Rolls
Royal Street Veranda: Apple Fritters
Stage Door Cafe: Chili Cheese Corn Dog
Bengal Barbecue: Berry Brownie Skewer, Chocolate Crispy Skewer

So basically the food ran the gamut from “Yum!” to “Uh, really?”

Now I know what you’re thinking–I went straight for the churro with spicy chocolate sauce, right? Well…I didn’t. I’m not a huge fan of spicy foods, and I didn’t know how spicy the spice was going to be, and the lines were long.

The skewers at the Bengal BBQ were almost identical to the ones from One More Disney Day, so I’m just going to recycle that picture here:

In this picture, it’s marshmallows between the crispies, but at the Fantasmic! event it was berries

Cause you know, digital photography, gotta save the film. Heh.

What I ended up going for was the Chili Cheese Corn Dog.

They had these really fancy, cool-looking signs

Once I saw the corn dog, I began to doubt my ability to actually eat it.

I’m kind of getting heartburn just looking at it

As you might have guessed from the picture, it was a corn dog covered in chili and cheese with fries on the side. And as a reminder, these are the same hand-dipped corn dogs you can get from the corn dog cart on Main Street. Anyway, at this point it was 10:30 and the viewing area for the Fantasmic! show (at 11:30) was filling up fast, so I figured I better go stake out a spot while I ate. So I did. With a giant corn dog. Slathered in chili. Standing up.

It was not, shall we say, graceful. Luckily it was dark.

The corn dog was indeed a bit much for me. I got about halfway through it before I had to throw it away. It tasted pretty much like what you’d expect a giant hand-dipped corn dog with chili and cheese to taste like. I had also considered the Mac-n-Cheese hot dog, but that looked even more intimidating than the corn dog. Anyway, so I ate half of it.

Here’s a picture of one of the Fantasmic! balloons decorating the area!

I also wanted a cupcake, but after the show they were sold out–boo. I did check out the cinnamon roll.

I actually tried to get a cast member to sell me one of these little signs because they look so awesome, but he refused and looked at me like I was crazy

The cinnamon rolls were the size of my head. I’m not joking. Well, if my head were flat and cinnamon roll-shaped.

Covered in red frosting

Did I mention the food was available starting at 4:00? Because the food was available starting at 4:00.

I also wanted the Blueberry Blast Drink, which had some kind of light up flashing ice cube thing in it that looked really cool, but the line was long after the show was over and I was kind of ready to go to bed.

The show itself was amazing, but I’ll cover that in my next post. Here’s a sneak peek.

Awesome

It was actually quite crowded. Much more crowded than I remember the Soundsational event being.

New Orleans Square right after the show

I don’t know why. Maybe they let in more people, or just the area is different than the Fantasyland layout they used for the Soundsational event, but we were much more packed in.

Looking toward Adventureland

I’ll be honest–I was a little disappointed. I really had hoped that with an AP-only crowd, it would be easier to get a good spot for the show without waiting too long, and I’d get a chance to ride some of the rides, but that really didn’t happen.

Well, I mean I chose not to ride the rides–I thought about the Haunted Mansion but there was a long line right after the show. I mean basically “right after the show” is the time period I’m talking about, since I’m getting old and midnight is starting to push my limit (except for One More Disney Day).

The crowd did thin out quite a bit in Adventureland after the mass exodus from the show cleared, about 12:30ish, but the Jungle Cruise, which I wanted to go on, was closed.

On my way out

All-in-all I had a good time. A bit disappointed by the crowds, but the opening of Fantasmic! was really cool, and I actually haven’t seen the show in years, so that was fun as well.

Oh yeah, and POPCORN BUCKETS!!!

There’s a special popcorn bucket, available only on the 14th, 15th, 21st, and 22nd for Fantasmic! And guess what? I got one for you! here it is!

Correction–I got two for you! One I’m going to give away right now, the other I’ll give away some time next week.

When next week?

You’ll have to keep checking! The easiest thing to do would be to subscribe using the link on the right, or just liking MYWTM on Facebook.

To enter, leave a comment here saying, “I! Love! Fantasmic!” Don’t forget to use a legitimate email address.

Giveaway ends Thursday, May 17 at 11:59pm PST. Good luck!

 

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