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Friday, March 5, 2010


Captain EO, Michael Jackson, Coppola and Lucas fans rejoice - Captain EO has returned for a limited engagement to Disneyland!

Copyright Disney

After Michael Jackson died, fans spoke up - they wanted to see the King of Pop again, one last time, however they could. Some scoffed, and Disney was wishy-washy, but the fans were finally rewarded - at least at Disneyland, anyway (the show wasn't just at Disneyland, and some were hoping that it would be revived in other locations as well).

I saw the show last weekend (a few days after opening) a few times, and I had a great time.

Look, the film isn't perfect. It wasn't shot with today's technology...the show opened 1986, after all. So the film is going to reflect that, in film quality and other elements (I know that every time I see the show, I will smirk at faux hawk man)...everything is a product of it's time. To help prep you for this time-warp back to the 80s, the pre-show really helps (the calming yet futuristic voice for the attraction that informs you what's what is superb, by the way); we are informed that we are about to see the pre-show video, exactly how it was shown back in 1986. The video is very 80s, and still enjoyable.

The film itself is entertaining. I had hoped that Disney would insert the deleted scenes as rumored, but that did not happen. It was understood that a lot of the original effects would not reappear (after all, another show has been in that theater since 1998), but, because of Honey, I Shrunk the Audience, the theater now shakes, bumps and rumbles (I loved it, but another one of my friends didn't enjoy that effect).

I know there are some people out there grumbling (silently or publicly online). Maybe you dislike Michael Jackson. Maybe you're afraid that the budget for reviving Captain EO will cut into the budget for a future attraction in that location. Maybe you're afraid Captain EO will overstay it's welcome. Or (doubtfully) you love Honey, I Shrunk the Audience.

Nothing anyone can do or say would convince you to not hate Michael Jackson. You will probably never like his music if you don't now or never think him a good person if you feel he's a bad person now (nevermind all of the work he's done for humanity and the environment).

Here's a newsflash: Disney can be stingy, and that's not going to be the fault of one specific attraction (especially one that was able to be implemented so quickly and didn't get all of it's effects back). If Disney decides to cheapen out, it's not going to be because of EO. And let's not forget all of the money that's being spent over at California Adventure right now.

Disney has not officially stated how long Captain EO will be sticking around. Honey, I shrunk the Audience is listed on the official Disneyland website as down for refurbishment...which is rather laughable, if you ask me. Considering how many people have packed the houses to show EO as opposed to the empty seats Honey saw, bringing back the other show would not make a whole lot of sense. Some people want EO out after a few months, but come on - to be fair, you should give the public at least a year to make it out to Disneyland. And do you really want Honey to come right back? If Disney is smart, in my honest opinion, they should wait until the planned Tomorrowland redo gets underway, which is in the not-too-distant future, if Tony Baxter gets his way.

If you love Honey, I Shrunk the Audience...well, there's nothing wrong with that. And it's a cute show. But the crowds had dissipated for a long time before EO returned. In the entirety of the time that I've had a Disneyland Resort Annual Pass (about 5 years), I think I only saw Honey once, at the behest of a friend (probably to calm her little brother down). There seems to be a more general consensus that people would see EO repeatedly as compared to Honey.

The crowds certainly have not failed the revived attraction. While I never had to wait a horrendously long time for it, the show played to packed houses every time I went. People screamed and applauded before the show, at the first entrance of Michael, and at the end of the show. And once people exited the theater, guests pounced on the Captain EO merchandise in Star Trader. Trying to look at anything was entering into a madhouse...on Main Street it was a little more calm, but all of the posters were gone.

The good captain has returned - rejoice!

1 comment:

  1. I can't say I have ever been a fan of Michael Jackson but I have to say that I was thrilled to hear that Captain EO was coming back. I was a freshman in high school when it opened and I can't wait to see it again. I actually made an effort to see it everytime I when to Disneyland, which usually was once a year. I certainly hope it does stick around for a while. Very Cool!