Disney’s California Adventure, 2017. Amid the glitz and the glimmer of a bustling, young theme park at the height of its golden age, Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! was a thing; a beacon for the shareholder elite.
Yes folks, it is official. As of a few hours ago at SDCC (San Diego Comic-Con), it was announced that The Hollywood Tower Hotel – Tower of Terror is going to be going under a transformation. Summer of 2017 it will re-open as an ‘all new attraction’ that’s being called Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! which is a mouthful, to say the least. But, to be fair The Hollywood Tower Hotel Tower of Terror, or THTHTOT, is not much better. I’m sure this will be casually called Mission: Breakout or just Breakout. Which makes me think of a much better Wreck-It Ralph attraction idea. That’s not important right now. What is important is the validity and severity of emotions that are currently being felt all across the nation and possibly the world over as well. I personally have only had the chance to ride the DCA version of Tower a few times.
However, being a Florida native with a parent who has worked at Walt Disney World for the last 24 of my 26 years, I have been on the WDW version a literal countless number of times. In fact, one day about 10 years ago now, I decided I wanted to do an experiment. I wanted to see just how many times I could ride ‘Towah’ as it is so affectionately known by a select few. From park opening to closing, including zero bathroom breaks, I rode that ride. I honestly just did not have to go to the restroom. That’s probably not healthy and may explain some…… anyway. 33.5 times. Yes, you read that correctly. 33.5 times. Point five?! Listen, and I’m not even trying to pull your leg, but I got stuck on the 13th ride up. All the way at the top of the drop shaft. The… 13th floor perhaps? Nope, just the fifth dimension.
It was for sure creepy. So yeah, 33.5 times. I was a kid that had nothing better to do. It was a lot of fun. But anyway back to the point…
I think that the things and concepts – explained by one of my Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI) personal heroes Joe Rohde – in the video below sound like it would be an awesome attraction. Somewhere else. That was my first reaction when I had heard the news. After giving it some thought, I completely understand why they are doing it this way. Though it doesn’t mean I have to like it. However the flip side to that attitude is that if I don’t like it I don’t have to go ride it. There are plenty of other people who are paying good money to experience this. And let’s be honest, I am going to ride this. I actually look forward to it. It’s weird. Something as iconic yet as trivial as a theme park attraction can carry a lot of weight. It’s not just a ride. But at the same time that’s exactly what it is. And that’s the key here. Remembering that this really is what Walt envisioned. In a way…
“Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.” — Walt Disney
And boy is there ever. I really think this can be a great thing if we let ourselves let it be. Can they screw it up? Of course that is a possibility. That’s always been the case, however. It’s just the fact that when the hits start to outnumber the flops, people start to forget about the flops. Except Stitch’s Great Escape. There’s always an exception to the rule. I’m mourning the loss of one of the best attractions on the west coast. But at the same time I am opening my mind for the new things that are coming. I mean worse case scenario we are still getting Star Wars land. So you know… up the fuck you can shut.
You are about to discover what lies beyond the fifth dimension, beyond the deepest, darkest corner of the imagination… to awesome mix vol. 1.