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Old 04-15-2008, 01:51 PM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 491

Ooo-de-lally Tour September 2007: Day 12 (Dare you enter the twilight zone??)

Saturday 29th September: Terrifying Towers… and singing.

All you Disney maniacs will be thrilled to know this was to be a Disney Day. MGM Studios to be precise… and I know they have named it HollyWood Studios now but it was still MGM on our trip so will be described as such.

We had to be up promptly as the Disney shuttle to Epcot left the hotel at 8.10am. After numerous pick ups and another bus from Epcot we arrived at MGM at 9.30am. It didn’t seem quite as busy as AK had but we were still wary about getting seats at the shows so we picked up a fast pass for the Indiana Stunt Show straight away. Turns out we didn’t need it but that is not something I am about to complain about! The first actual ride of the day was to be Star Tours.

Obviously this is one for the boys but I really enjoyed it too. Simulators sometimes make M feel sick but this one was fine and we thought all the theming was great. Trying to make a sensible route around the park we took the opportunity to see Sounds Dangerous next, and very quickly wished we hadn’t bothered. It was a 6 minute wait so at least we didn’t waste too much time but we both agreed that this show is actually woeful. Even the kids weren’t finding it funny.

Moving swiftly on we hoped for a better time at the Muppet Vision 3D show - and thankfully we got one. I got very excited about Bean the rabbit as I loved the film The Tale of the Bunny Picnic when I was little, in which he had the starring role. The Muppet show was also great fun and put us in a lighter frame of mind after Sounds Dangerous. Whilst in the area we also met Buzz and got some pictures of other Toy Story characters.

We weren’t really up for queuing to meet them all though, and to be honest I feel really sorry for all the parents who have to. I’m sure it’s all worth it just to see little Jimmy’s face but it’s got to wear thin after a while! Anyhow, we seemed to be on a bit of a roll where characters are concerned as we also stumbled across the Power Rangers and Cars characters as we walked back through the park. It’s quite funny really as we always saw an ENORMOUS throng of parents and kids and were just saying “why are all those people…” before the character hove into view and the sentence petered off with an “ohhh” of realisation.

We were feeling a bit peckish but it definitely wasn’t time for lunch yet so instead we got a couple of churros - which we found to be ok but didn’t really hit the spot for either of us. While eating our churros we had our first High School Musical experience of the day. Let me just say that if I never hear this again:

“What time is it?
It's our vacation.
What time is it?
Party time!
That's right, say it loud.
What time is it?
Time of our lives. Anticipation.
What time is it?
School's out. Scream and shout!”

I could die happy.

It wasn’t so bad the first time - you hear them coming down the road and it’s mildly entertaining for a few minutes before you walk away. The problems start the second, third, fourth, and fifth time they prance down the road and sing the SAME SONG again and again and again. You’d think they’d branch out but apparently not! It’s the security that have to walk next to the float that I feel sorry for - imagine that being your job.

I would go a little bit cuckoo I think. Still - it was obviously super popular with the tweens and younger teens which is nice for them… again I guess as a parent it is the price you pay for choosing to have kids!!

Time was getting away from us though - it was 11.30am and we had to be at the Indiana Jones Stunt Show. As I said we did not need the Fast Passes but by the time the show started the audience was packed… and it seemed everyone wanted to take part too. They asked for volunteers and everyone jumped up and down. I had to wrestle with my distaste for the couple who were on their honeymoon and actually wearing Mickey Wedding Ears. I assume this is par for the course where ears are concerned (I think we have already established that I don’t really get that aspect of the Disney experience!) but is this not just a very unsubtle way of trying to get free stuff? Maybe I’m a cynic… or maybe I just don’t go in for ostentatious displays… whatever it is I don’t particularly like this kind of behaviour. I hope they had a fabulous honeymoon, but I also hope everyone else, who wasn’t wearing some kind of badge of why they think they should be singled out for special treatment, got a fair crack at the fun stuff too. Un-surprisingly the wedding ears couple did get picked… but enough of my grouchiness and on with the show. It was action packed and all sorts of fun. The stuntmen and women were great, as were the effects. I really enjoyed this and thought it was really well put together.

Being adrenalin junkies we were disappointed that Rock n Rollercoaster was in rehab during our trip so this only really left us with the Tower of Terror for thrills. On route to the tower we bumped into Mickey, Minnie, Donald (and his woman), and Goofy. Again we could not be bothered to queue up and got a little frustrated with the Disney photographers. Picture the scene - long queue of kids taking it in turn to get their autographs and picture taken with the characters. There is an approximate 5 second gap between each kid going up, and a group of other people trying to get a picture of said character on his own. A group of people with no desire to have Goofy’s autograph, and even less desire to have someone else’s kid in their photo. The Disney photographers DELIBERATEY stand in the way of this group in that 5 second window between kids… just to make sure everyone has to queue up and they get to try to sell their photos I assume. I fear the High School Musical Kids had started their favourite song again as well…

ANYWAY… the Tower of Terror. Fantastic! Loved the theming, loved the ride, and it was basically a walk on which always helps. Not much else to say other than I enjoyed it WAY more than I thought I would. I’m not a huge fan of drop towers but this one was just a little bit different! We wanted to carry on with the “Thrills” theme so dashed over to the Light, Motors, Action 1pm show. M left me behind somewhat and being dinky I got a bit lost in the crowd… we both made it though and got good seats for the show. The show itself was great - it rained a bit so there was a short intermission in the middle but they were soon back in action and what a spectacle it was. I have made a video of the show I liked it so much:

Lights, Motors, Action!

After all the action we had grown a little peckish and decided on the Sci-Fi Dine In for lunch. I was a little nervous about getting a table as they had the whole free Disney Dining Plan on at the time and we hadn’t booked anywhere as don’t really like planning our meals that much. We were seated fairly quickly, although there were lots of bigger parties who were not so lucky. I can’t say I am surprised as the service was really SLOW - but we found that a lot at Disney. We both opted for burgers - M had the Angus Steak and I opted for the BBQ Chicken. Both came with fries and diet soda and were perfectly nice but nothing special. The atmosphere was definitely different but not exactly conducive to conversation I thought. On the whole I think I would try somewhere different if we go again.

After lunch we went for a mooch on Mickey Avenue and took pictures of everything. Next up was the Backlot Tour - I remember it took us ages to find the entrance has part of the park was cordoned off and we just couldn’t work out the route! We found it eventually and once on we really enjoyed the whole truck / water / fire aspect, but found the rest to be a bit disappointing. The AFI Museum at the end was really interesting though and housed some very cool memorabilia.

We needed our ride photo and were keen on riding the Tower of Terror again so we walked back through the park via the Honey I shrunk the Kids Playground which was absolutely rammed with the little people. We also spotted Mike and Sully from Monsters Inc and took some pictures before arriving at the tower.

We had a great time second ride around and have a fantastic ride photo. M and I were ding the whole arms in the air thing and in the picture the kid next to me is looking at us as though we are completely and totally insane. It was a damn trial actually getting the photo though. WHY does it take so long to do everything - we were in line for about 30 minutes and there was only a couple of people in front of us. I dread to think what it’s like when it is really busy. You could spend the whole day riding one ride and trying to get the photo!

Our last ride of the day was The Great Movie ride - lets just say we both wished we had finished on a high note with the Tower of Terror. There were some fabulous attractions at MGM but this wasn’t one of them!

We needed to get the bus back to Epcot but stopped to buy a couple of souvenirs and our magnet before leaving. Believe it or not we couldn’t find an MGM magnet for love nor money so bought a pin that I have snapped the back off and will glue a magnet to just as soon as I buy one. Again the service really was painful with the man behind the counter struggling with the concept of travellers cheques and taking about four hours to do anything. I actually asked if the other girl could serve us as she at least seemed to understand her till but he was determined to wind me up as much as possible and insisted he serve us. While this was going on the High School Musical posse started with the “What time is it?!” song again and I very nearly killed them all with my death-stare. Thankfully server guy pulled it together just in time for us to beat a hasty retreat… only to run into probably the most damning of our poor Disney service experiences. Disney transport strikes again:

We boarded a bus at 5.05pm - everyone had a seat, no one was standing, but there was some kind of commotion at the door and were weren’t going anywhere. We couldn’t quite fathom what was going on other than another managerial Disney type was summoned and emotions seemed to be running high. Eventually it transpired that the driver had refused to let a young man in a wheelchair onto the bus - his reasoning being that the bus was full. The young man could see that this was not true and had quite rightly asked why people were being allowed to sit in the area designated for a wheelchair. The managerial type obviously understood this too and immediately did the sensible thing and asked if these people would mind standing - at which point everyone realised what was going on and half the bus got up and offered their spaces. The driver then proceeded to make a huge song and dance of loading the wheelchairs on the bus. I refuse to believe it's that difficult and surely the drivers should be pretty accustomed to using the controls and fastenings etc? I felt terrible for the young man and his party as they obviously felt bad that the bus driver had held everyone up, and was now doing his best to humiliate them all. I was appalled… and I wasn’t the only one. We finally arrived at Epcot at 5.50pm and I really hope that driver got the dressing down he deserved later. I know I have gone on a bit about the service we received at Disney but let me say now that slow and cumbersome service is irritating, whereas the attitude of this bus driver was completely unacceptable.

There was a huge thunderstorm while we were waiting for the Shuttle at Epcot - I saw it coming though and we had a nice dry bench to watch everyone else running for cover from which was fairly entertaining! We made it back to the hotel with no further mishaps and did a quick shower and change before heading out to Sizzler for dinner. M had the Classic Trio (chicken, steak, and shrimp), and I opted for Shrimp, Shrimp, Shrimp. We both had some buffet food as well and washed it all down with Bud Light. The dinner was very nice and a vast improvement on the similar style of meal we had had at Ponderosa. After dinner we were shattered do it was back to the hotel for TV and bed.
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Old 04-15-2008, 03:50 PM   #2
Did you speak to a 'human being'?
As you can see, all I have is a load of gobble-de-gook writing
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Excellent again .
Altogether now--What Time Is It? sorry.
Can't wait for more.x.

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Old 04-15-2008, 04:25 PM   #3
I need a cup of tea and a big bar of free chocolate now
Was born with my dancing shoes at the ready
I will be back later to stalk some more
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Originally Posted by Daysleeper40 View Post
[B]as a parent it is the price you pay for choosing to have kids!!
its not all bad, honest !
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Old 04-16-2008, 03:21 AM   #4

The Original 'Free Spirit'
Who's Next??
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Another lovely report
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Old 04-16-2008, 11:07 AM   #5
Who says these things pass you by.....
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Sounds like it's a good job I have high Disney and HSM tolerance levels! I'm glad you enjoyed the Muppets and Star Tours - those are my two favourite things at MGM (I know, I know). I can't understand why they haven't got rid of Sounds Dangerous yet. I love Drew Carey but even I think that show sucks!

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Old 04-16-2008, 02:41 PM   #6
Lost another competition
It's absolute bliss
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I can't believe you don't like the song "what time is it?"
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:55 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by DisneyJo View Post
I can't believe you don't like the song "what time is it?"
I thought that song went "What time is it?.....it's Chicco time!!!!!!"
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Old 04-20-2008, 03:58 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Girlsontour View Post
I thought that song went "What time is it?.....it's Chicco time!!!!!!"

Whoa there - I know I said it was bad, but not THAT bad!!

Arieljasmine - I found MGM a bit confusing as some of it fantastic (Muppets / LMA / Indy / Star Tours... I'm guessing the coaster is great too) and then there are things like Sounds Dangerous and The Great Movie ride which just aren't good IMHO
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Old 05-03-2008, 08:56 AM   #9
I keep trying to convert everybody, but they just don't want to be converted
I can only get a tag if its near the weekend. a monday, tuesday and some wednesdays are definately no tag days
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We only use the disney transport when we are drinking, but hey that's every night!!!

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Old 05-05-2008, 01:43 PM   #10

Pete and I wait and watch some lovely baby lizards
I have always booked myself
"Play Up Pompey"
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great day
Rachel "Play up Pompey, Pompey Play up"

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Old 03-19-2009, 11:21 AM   #11
Hasn't got a clue what a tag is
Christmassyfyed, yes I have had a glass of wine judging by that spelling
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Thanks I enjoyed reading your report, that bus driver had an annoying attitude.

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Old 05-28-2009, 09:23 AM   #12
Totally in love with Lisa_C
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Great day! I've never understood the whole HSM thing but the Mrs and Kacee who is 2 love it!
Totally in love with Lisa_C
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