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Thread: My Disney Top 5 - Things I'll Miss About Splash Mountain

  1. #1
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    My Disney Top 5 - Things I'll Miss About Splash Mountain

    My Disney Top 5 - Things I'll Miss About Splash Mountain by Chris Barry

    Chris ponders about what he might miss when the current version of Splash Mountain bids us farewell.

    Read it here!

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  3. #2

    Nice article and I like your optimism. I generally agree with your sentiments about Song of the South as luckily I’ve seen the movie multiple times. I loved James Baskett as Uncle Remus and its shame people will be unable to see his wonderful performance.

    On to Splash Mountain. My apologies on my negativity but venting is necessary for me. I hate this change and my hope is somehow its get canceled. I liked Princess and the Frog but not enough to replace Splash. Splash is my favorite attraction of all time since it opened because of the happy music, the animatronic critters, details of the physical sets and the queue, and the Brer characters. I have little to no faith in the PatF redo. Since the 1990s, with exception of Soarin replacing Food Rocks, it seems when Disney replaces an existing attraction, the newer attraction is worse than the original. Since the likelihood Disney is taking a big hit financially with COVID19, replacing Splash Mountain is a major waste of money and the funds are better spent on the plenty of other projects or much needed refurbishments. I also hope Tokyo leaves Splash Mountain alone because I will be taking my tourist dollars over to Tokyo instead as soon as Splash Mountain closes in Florida.

  4. #3

    Nice piece, Chris. Your comments on the movie are spot on, noting it’s a “flawed film and a product from an unenlightened time,” with stereotyped characters and dialogue that are unsettling at least.

    And it should be watched and discussed and learned from. I agree with that, too, but for me, that should be done in educational interactions, with in-depth discussions about race and culture depictions in media and sharing of perspectives among varied peoples and cultures.

    I saw “Song of the South” in its 1972 re-release, in Montgomery, Alabama. I loved it. But I was 7....

    Today, I remember none of the story or the stereotyped characters and dialogue because I was only focused on Br’er Rabbit, Br’er Bear, Br’er Fox, and Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah. I just wanted to watch the handful of animated segments and hear the songs - basically what’s in Splash Mountain now.

    To others, though, the movie is fundamentally a depiction of stereotyped characters and dialogues. It’s offensive to so many, and those offenses are so defined and set out that Disney itself already won’t let it be shown or sold again. And understandably so.

    I would love to have Splash Mountain, always. It’s a fantastic ride, and I’m happy when we’re walking in WDW and it comes into view. But the idea of people being offended, by something that should bring joy, means a change is needed. And they’ve picked the right movie for the next version - maybe Splash Mountain could be replaced by a “Sugar Mill Slide.”

    So, like you: “I'm looking forward to seeing what the Imagineers bring us. I'm expecting a wonderful soundtrack, some beautiful scenery and I'm fully expecting to be dazzled by a room full of fireflies! With any luck, I'll get one last ride on Splash Mountain someday, but if not, it gave me plenty of smiles and thrills over the years. Change is good. Evolution is good.”

  5. #4

    Thank you for sharing your heart on this! I have the movie, Song of the South & always knew the written stories whilst growing up in the ghetto in S. F. California in the 50's & 60's..

    These stories are kindred to Rudyard Kipling, Aesop's Fairytales style stories & I have always treasured them as such!

    I too will miss the sweet simplicity of this ride. I agree with you in that a transition can be seen into the Princess & the Frog storyline, whilst including some hidden 'character' tributes to Splash Mountain.. just as there is a tribute to Country Bear USA after the end of the Winnie the Pooh ride in Disneyland!

    I have been visiting Disneyland since 1962!

    Let us go forth & become participants in the NEW imagineering that awaits our enjoyment!

  6. #5

    Sign this petition if you are tired of bowing to cancel culture. It is really gaining steam!

  7. #6

    Nice article, as always. Unfortunate subject this time, but nice article of positive memories. I'll have to see if I have a picture of your opossums somewhere. For me the goal was always shooting for a nice pic of the harmonica playing raccoon, but I have a bunch of other pics also, I'm sure. I know I've tried for the three main characters and many of the others, but not sure I ever got the opossums. Very hard to balance shutter speed an other settings to get good lighting in there without getting serious blur due to log motion (at least for me with my somewhat simple digi cam - more serious photographers may be able to regularly beat this challenge! ).

    Regarding the walk around characters, I have difficulty believing they survive, at least in CA and FL. If the whole reason for changing the ride is that the story it's based on is deemed problematic and/or flat out racist, and Disney is trying to expunge it's existence from the parks by eliminating the characters and theme from the ride, I just can't see how the characters live on. It's one more "what are these characters from" question Disney probably doesn't want to have to deal with.

    Unless you are in Tokyo.... (or maybe - seems there was a statement on evaluating it from Oriental Land Company a few days after the US announcement.). It's entirely unclear to me why it's possibly OK for the ride to remain in it's current form over there. The park still says Disney on it. I would think for something that is apparently this offensive, it would have been coordinated to be removed over there as well, before any announcement was made at all. Aside from being aware of the Tokyo parks' existence and some of the unique rides over there, I am not familiar with the dynamics of the business relationship. It seems unfathomable that Disney would not have 100% control based on how they handle US parks, but I guess the relationship really is such that they don't have 100% control? So anyway, if the ride can stay as it is there, I would think the characters could survive there too. Heck of a lot more involved to get over to Tokyo than it is to cruise down the East coast for a trip to WDW though!


  8. #7

    I'm sorry but I'm not sorry to see the current theme of Splash Mountain go away. I've enjoyed the ride many times with my family and I'll admit I really didn't think about the origins much. Of course I only saw the movie once as a kid many years ago. Having said that The Song of the South WAS a racist movie. It wan't a blatantly racist movie but it was still racist because it was basically propaganda. It was a whitewash of our history designed to make white people feel better about how black people were treated not just in the 1870's but in the 1940's when the movie was made. Black people can't have had it so bad, look at this beautiful relationship between this black man and white boy. Never mind the fact that no black man would ever assume he was more than a servant to this boy (not that he could not also be a friend) and any attempt to rise above his station is just as likely to get him strung up as not free man notwithstanding. I saw The Song of the South probably 40 some years ago and as a kid I thought it was great. At least I still remember bits of it so it must of made an impression but I have no desire to see it again or own it. It isn't part of our history. It's a lie to let people think was something other than it was. From this prospective The Princess and the Frog isn't perfect either but it does at least make a small effort to address reality and while I doubt that any of that will make it into the ride at least the source material will be a great deal better than The Song of the South. If you want a story about a black man and a white boy read Huckleberry Finn. At least it's a lot more honest about the time.



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