There are a few things to report on involving our trip. First of all, we watched Fantasmic! again on Tuesday, and this time, the dragon animatronic was working! And we think we figured out why it seems to be finicky again, after we thought they'd worked out all the bugs. The dragon seemed taller. Like they removed the original head they'd put on it, and gave it a longer neck. It also looked kind of inflatable, which makes it a little blah, but we always have and probably always will prefer dragon-head-on-a-stick, so there's probably not any pleasing us on that front. At least it's nice to know that they tried.
On Wednesday...oh my goodness, let me see if I can remember the important things. I almost completely forgot one of the little magical moments that happened--the type that doesn't happen every day but just makes things that much more fun. We suspect it had something to do with Rapunzel maybe being out sick or something. We went to the Fantasy Faire to watch a play, and I was happy to see that they were doing Beauty and the Beast all day, because that one's my favorite and we'd already missed all the morning shows. While we were on the way to the theatre, we passed the door that lets cast members in and out of the Royal Hall (a building we have yet to enter, due to our fear of interaction with characters), and saw none other than Flynn Rider poking his head out and looking around as if to see if the coast was clear. He must have determined that it was, because he came out the door and started heading in the direction of the theater. A girl stopped and asked him for a picture, and he replied, "Yes, but quickly."
We didn't think much else of it, and we continued on to get some seats. Not surprisingly, the place was already pretty full, but our usual spot in the second-to-last row was still free, so we went there. As we sat down, who should we see but Flynn Rider, walking across the benches on tiptoe, as if they were stepping stones over hot lava or something. He walked through the whole audience until he got to the front where all the little kids get to sit, and he talked to them for a while. Then he got up, told everyone to enjoy the show, and vanished. It was pretty awesome. We figure he had come in to do the show, but since Rapunzel wasn't available he decided to kill time in other ways. (Athena noticed that the Royal Theatre sign had changed to indicate that there would Tangled performances, so maybe Rapunzel was feeling better later in the day.)
After the show, we went on Big Thunder, after which point Gaston finally got a hold of his friends. A couple of his friends from a show he did were at Disneyland that day for Grad Night, so they figured they might as well hang out, at least for a while. We ended up staying with them until they kicked all the non-Grad Night people out of California Adventure, a strategy that worked in our favor when we ran into more of their friends, who let us join them in line for Star Tours...and then worked against us when the friends kept taking us on rattling rides that we did not have the energy for. All in all, it was pretty fun, though, even if we did end up with massive headaches.
The scary thing, though, was when we were in line for the Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, and I heard some of the girls in the group talking fondly about watching Toy Story when they were little, as if it were so very long ago. That's when I did some math and realized that most of these children hadn't even been born when Toy Story came out in theaters. And that's one of the movies that we were old enough, when it came out, that we don't even consider it a "movie of our childhood." Wow.
Oh right, there was one more thing I wanted to mention, kind of along the lines of the Fantasmic! "it's nice to know they're trying" thing. We also went on the...Ariel's...um. We can't remember what the official name of the ride is, but for all intents and purposes, it's The Little Mermaid ride. We went on that. And we noticed they'd made a lot of changes. When we saw them, we remembered that Kimee, who follows Disneyland news obsessively online, had told us they'd done some things. Mostly they just added fish...like, everywhere. Including Flounder in the grotto scene. It helped make the backgrounds seem less empty, and it makes the ride feel slightly more inclusive by having the fish watching the ride vehicles.
They also changed the hair on the Human Ariel and Eric animatronic figures. Before, the hair was foam or something, but now it looks like wigs! I'm not sure it's much of an improvement, because the texture on the hair is very strange, and the color on Ariel's kind of makes it look like a bad dye job or something? I don't know. Maybe more realistic hair would be too hard to maintain...but on the other hand, this is Disney. More importantly, they put Ariel's hair in a ponytail, and it's not supposed to be in a ponytail--in the movie, she wears it in a half-up.
...I think that was all I had to say. They didn't change anything about the Ursula scene (that we noticed), but we thought of some improvements for it (she says, as if they're the bestest experts or something). Like if they had the giant conch shell Ursula lounges in in the background, or, since they have Ursula looking at her crystal bubble thingie and singing the bit about "this one longing to be thinner, that one wants to get the girl...", maybe instead of projecting completely unrelated footage of Ariel, they could show the guests on the ride exactly what Ursula shows Ariel when she sings that part. It could be neat.
But to end on a more positive note, we decided to get some funnel cake on Tuesday, so we got the one with chocolate brownie topping, and it was super delicious.
Today I'm thankful for another great Disneyland visit, evidence that Disneyland is working to make things better, getting a ton of shiny new cards in Kingdom Hearts [chi], random Flynn Rider encounters, and chocolate brownie funnel cake.
And now, all the news we found out about after getting back to the internet (our beloved Masakazu Morita is coming to Anime Expo! What!) has pretty much sapped whatever energy we have left, so we're going to go lie down.