Laughin' Place: Redefining Disney

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by HeX, Oct 18, 2018.

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  1. HeX Self-Proclaimed Disney Expert

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    Tezuka Productions is Disney's Japanese partner/ally. Disney is bringing over Astroboy to the US, remember?

    Dragon Ball/Dragon Ball Z will show up on a competitor TV network in the US.
     
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  2. HonestAbe1809 Abraham Lincoln 2020

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    Dec 1, 2013
    1. Why stop with Japanese culture? I'd say that Sun Wukong could be done well by Disney. The Monkey King is a ludicrously complex character that'd be interesting to see Disney adapt. They adapted 1001 Arabian Nights, so why not Journey to the West?
    2. I'd think that some form of ghost ship would be the perfect idea for a haunted house in Oceania.
     
  3. eldandythedoubter Well-Known Member

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    This right here.
     
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  4. PunMaster Well-Known Member

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    Sep 12, 2016
    Celtic myth has some great stuff too. The story of Lugh the Long Arm freeing Ireland from his evil grandfather Balor the Evil Eye and becoming its’ first king would be a great movie.
     
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  5. That one British guy Well-Known Member

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    By the way can I just say how munch I love this tl. My favourite parts so far have been the parks and Walt getting involved with the gaming industry.
     
  6. Kalvan Well-Known Member

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    Hmm...

    I assume Oceania won't feature Big Brother or The Four Ministries (R) even if it opens in 1984. Does this mean there is no The Living Seas at EPCOT, as the new park would make it redundant?
     
  7. HeX Self-Proclaimed Disney Expert

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    Thanks! Glad you're enjoying things. Unfortunately as school gets more intense I won't be able to post as frequently, but by late May or early June a somewhat more regular schedule will hopefully appear.

    Nope, no 1984 references here! Oceania takes its name from the real-world place, not the book, though it has little to do with actual Oceania.

    The Living Seas is at the Seas Pavilion at EPCOT already (it was an opening day attraction), but there isn't much overlap between it and the new park. The Seas Pavilion explores what is under the oceans. Oceania takes a bunch of disparate locations and ties them together with their relationships to the sea. But Oceania's lands are all about places above the water's surface, like an amusement park at a pier or a bunch of icebergs.

    Hope that clears it up.
     
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  8. Threadmarks: Home On the Range

    HeX Self-Proclaimed Disney Expert

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    "People don't just sit around and talk anymore. So, let's do just that! Pull up a chair and put on your listenin' ears, ladies and gents, because my stories can take you to faraway lands with mysterious compatriots. In fact, let me tell y'all about my favorite place in all the world, Cascade Peak."
    --The Prospector, the narrator of Cascade Peak at Disneytropolis

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    On November 5, 1979, Cascade Peak opened its gates in Disneytropolis. Westernland had been languishing for six years without a major expansion, watching in envy as both Disney World and Disneyland got their own new Frontierland attraction, the Western River Expedition. To make up for it, in 1979 Walt Disney Imagineering unveiled the steepest, most thrilling log flume ride ever created. At a staggering 53° drop from a height of eighty feet and with a top speed of forty miles an hour, Cascade Peak is a ride that draws in thrillseekers the world over.

    The ride has an interesting history. With dwindling space to be found in Disneyland, Disney World facing not only additional pavilions at the EPCOT Center but also an entire new theme park, and EuroDisney's design stage completed, there was no logical place for WDI to put Cascade Peak but Disneytropolis. The attraction's roots can be found in the scrapped concept of America Sings, a ride that could have potentially replaced the Carousel of Progress at Disneyland for the American Bicentennial. It featured singing animatronic wildlife, but the idea was shot down due to all resources at the company being put towards building the EPCOT Center. For a while, America Sings sat in limbo as the Country Bear Jamboree moved into the Magic Kingdom and no space opened up in Anaheim. Then, in 1977, with Imagineers looking to spice up Disneytropolis, the idea was revived with a more thrilling aspect to it.

    But that wasn't Imagineering's first choice as basis for the ride. Some wished to theme Cascade Peak around the controversial 1949 live-action/animated Disney film, Song of the South. Walt, having faced more than enough public battery because of the film, refused to follow through on that idea, even with all racist elements of Song of the South removed. Walt would later take a sharp 180° on the idea of locking away that movie forever, though, and as part of the Walt Disney's Animated Classics VHS series the film was included with an analysis in the special features, teaching viewers what was right and wrong with the film and allowing others to learn from Disney's past mistakes.

    Disneytropolis, as a result of Cascade Peak, gained a sharp boost in attendance and caused even more families to enter the Most Magical Place on Earth. However, this had the effect of also causing emerging Japanese organized crime groups (Yakuza) to take special interest in the park. Unable to touch Disney themselves, who with their status as an American company were deemed out of reach, the Yakuza instead began a shakedown of the Oriental Land Company, the organization who worked in conjunction with Disney to run their Japanese properties and owned 49% of the park. When Disney caught wind of those events in 1980, they were not happy, and immediately took a stand against organized crime in Japan.

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    The ride, as with all Disney attractions, begins in the queue. Guests enter a mineshaft and make their way past glimmering diamonds, gold veins, and sticks of sizzling dynamite embedded in the walls. The place gives off Big Lightning Mountain vibes, but also feelings similar to that of the caves the Seven Dwarfs mine in Snow White.

    After spending a while in dimly lit passages, guests then funnel through a narrow doorway and enter a large subterranean cavern, filled to the brim with sparkling precious stones and metals. A canal lies before them, filled with bateaux designed to look like lashed-together, hollowed-out logs similar to something one might see in a Mark Twain novel, seating eight people in four rows of two.

    The bateaux begin their journey by ascending a small hill and turning right, leaving the showbuilding and taking a soft curve past the big drop, before re-entering the mountain. Then the first setpiece appears, with an old man lazily reclining in a rocking chair on a wide Southern porch, strumming a banjo. He introduces himself as the narrator, and a retired prospector-turned-millionaire who had many adventures out in the American West.

    The boat then cruises into the next room, as the prospector's banjo tune picks up into the ride's theme, "Southern Symphony". A wagon train shows up on the horizon, with the people aboard breaking into song and singing along with the theme. There are many gags straight up Marc Davis' alley, including a mule and dog facing off while their owners are ignorant and a group of drunken men trying and failing to shoot down a flock of ducks. The prospector, in a younger form, sits at the front stagecoach, and begins to tell the tale of his greatest adventure, the wagon train ride to Cascade Peak. At the opposite end of the group is a stereotypical villain, a cowboy in black and purple clothing twiddling a handlebar moustache and discussing his evil plans to sic Indians on the train and claim the riches of Cascade Peak for himself.

    The boats head outside for a little bit and drop down a short hill, named Slippin' Falls. The track then takes the boats under the main drop of the ride itself and travels back inside. The prospector has struck out from the rest of the group, and is seated on a stump surrounded by cartoon animals. Opossums and owls hang from the trees above, prairie dogs pop out one by one from their burrows, and a bear, fox, and bunny sit side-by-side. All of them listen intently to the prospector, who is telling a story about an adventuresome rabbit. Obscured by the trees, the villain is being chased down by a swarm of angry bees, thwarted in his attempt to shoot the prospector.

    The scene shifts back to the wagon train, this time in the evening. The animals have joined the human travelers and everyone sits around a massive campfire, singing the lyrics of "Southern Symphony" into to the starry night sky. The boats then drift past the villain and his cronies, who can be found tricking a group of Indians into attacking the settlers.

    The bateaux return outside one final time, climbing the second hill, Splash Pass, dropping, then climbing higher than ever before. After that short thrill, the ride enters a scene of pandemonium. Indian warriors have encircled the wagon train camp, and are attacking it with flaming arrows and rifles. The villain stands with the chief, holding the prospector hostage, blindfolded and smoking a cigarette. He is being forced to "walk the plank" off the edge of the final drop, Geronimo Falls.

    Then, there's the final drop. This segment is what turns Cascade Peak from a pleasant family cruise to a pulse-pounding thrill ride, sending guests down a chute that is the highest, steepest, and speediest in the world. A photo is snapped on the way down, which can be purchased at the end of the ride if one so chooses. The boats splash down at the bottom, sending up huge amounts of water (and soaking the guests) before shooting below ground level and into one final scene.

    The last scene shows everyone happy in the shadow of Cascade Peak. The young prospector shakes hands with the Indian chief, realizing their mistakes and misunderstandings about each other. The animals frolic in the grass and greenery, while people cook food and wash clothing. Everyone is joyously singing one final refrain of "Southern Symphony", celebrating a safe passage to Cascade Peak. The villain has been strung up by his boots from the branch of one solid oak, where blindfolded children take swings at his face, treating him like a piñata (or, more fittingly, a pain-yata). One final swing around the corner brings guests back to the exiting docks, where the elderly prospector thanks them for spending time listening to his stories about Cascade Peak.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2019
  9. Nerdman3000 On the hunt for Great Caesar’s Ghost!

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    Interesting, so it looks like Splash Mountain essentially only exists in Japan ITTL, not Anaheim or Florida. Don’t know what to think about that.

    By the way, I know we’re getting what is basically DisneySea at Disney World ITTL as a third park, but part of me really hopes that a version of Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom will happen ITTL.

    Hell, I wouldn’t even mind if Disney World ITTL got up to six parks. Like, personally, if Disney ever built another park in Florida, I always wanted them to do something based based on World myths like Atlantis, as well as Greek, Egyptian, Norse, and Chinese Mythology, etc. Maybe call it Disney’s Mythica.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
  10. Unknown Member

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    I'm not surprised the Yakuza would find some way to make money off this park (it makes sense ITTL)…

    Good update, @HeX...

    BTW, I think we can safely rule out a park in Iran, given what's going on there at this time both IOTL and ITTL (BTW, the Iran hostage crisis led to the start of Nightline on ABC; that probably still happens ITTL)...
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
  11. HeX Self-Proclaimed Disney Expert

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    Yeah, the yakuza presence at Disneytropolis will have some big ripples in the pool pretty soon.

    The Iranian Hostage Crisis is still happening. Most politics will stay the same through George H.W. Bush's term. Also, the map on the first page of this timeline still stands as the official locations of the Disney Parks ITTL, in the modern day. So the park in the Middle East is in Cairo, as Egypt will be a more stable nation than IOTL.
     
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  12. Nivek Resident Videogame Expert

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    very unique rides and extension, nice one.
     
  13. Osakadave TexIowan

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    Sorry, but utterly unrealistic about the yakuza. They stick to the vice and shifty stuff. Shaking down families and other innocents going to a Disney park is not only way outside their traditional MO, it's going to bring down the cops faster than you can say Nobu Takahashi.
     
  14. woweed New Hippie

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    Florida
    Holy Jesus.
     
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  15. HeX Self-Proclaimed Disney Expert

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    Yeah, I'll try to fix it.
     
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  16. dmg86 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 9, 2014
    Speaking of Japan does it still have a relationship with Nintendo? In the 1950's they had a license to use Disney characters on playing cards. By the late 70's they had already made some single game consoles and were developing the Game and Watch series of portable games.
     
  17. HeX Self-Proclaimed Disney Expert

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    Yes, Disney still does have that relationship with them, as far as it goes with the Game & Watch series.
     
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  18. Andrew Boyd Resident Rail Enthusiast

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    What's the next Disney feature?
     
  19. Unknown Member

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    Corpus Christi, TX
    If there are Yakuza trying to extort visitors, well, it won't end well for the Yakuza at all; look at the effect the Rastafarian movement had on Jamaican tourism for an example of what could happen (hint: it went down until the Jamaican government cracked down on it, IIRC)...
     
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  20. Andrew Boyd Resident Rail Enthusiast

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    Can we at least maybe see some improvements to Amtrak ITTL?
     
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