Friday, May 02, 2008

Snapshot: Disneyland! - Hey Goofy!

There is a much more casual dynamic to the characters at Disneyland. It was a refreshing change of pace from the long lines and general mob scenes that accompany character appearances at the Florida parks. A fun and spontaneous picture such as this is well nigh impossible most of the time at Walt Disney World.

9 comments:

Craig Wheeler said...

I think it is funny how Disney has turned the characters into a commodity in Orlando. Smart business decision, though. They get extra revenue with the autograph books and pens. Plus they have very cheap attractions. So instead of needing to build a new ride ($$$) to eat more guests they can just throw up another character greeting spot for little money and then have another "attraction" that guests will queue up for.

I remember going when I was young at it was as you see in the DL photo...very casual, no huge crowds, more interaction time, no handler there trying to speed the line through.

Old style = good for guest experience.
New style = good for the bottom line.

KINGCRAB said...

Plus they have very cheap attractions. So instead of needing to build a new ride ($$$) to eat more guests they can just throw up another character greeting spot for little money and then have another "attraction" that guests will queue up for.

I disagree on that opinion. I don't see ANY attraction at WDW as being cheap.

But I do agree that the characters at DL (with a few exceptions) and especially at the Tokyo Disney Resort do get to roam freely and run around and play more than WDW's characters and that it'd be nice if WDW's characters could regain those similar freedoms in the future.

3 other possible factors to consider:

1) The WDW folks are probably more concerned about the characters' safety at WDW--many Americans do tend to get quite unruly...and, unfortunately, the characters have always been frequent victims of physical abuse from guests.

2) It seems that WDW has to take different business approaches due to being a "tourist destination" as opposed to being a "locals' park" like DL or Tokyo Disney.

3) They want to make sure that the guests do get their chances to meet their favorite characters with a guarantee that they will get to see them.

So, at the end of the day, both the "old and new styles" of character greeting experiences are beneficial for both guest experiences and the bottom line.

Craig Wheeler said...

Sorry. That should have said "They are very cheap attractions" -- referring to the characters, not rides or shows.

Dr. Nigel Channing said...

I agree -- having been going to WDW all my life, seeing the character interaction at DL for the first time a few years ago was like a breath of fresh air.

Actually heard from a longtime WDW visitor who took their first trip to DL complain about how there were "no lines", etc. for the characters there!! What?!

Anywho -- we love the character interaction at DL...

KINGCRAB said...

"They are very cheap attractions" -- referring to the characters, not rides or shows.

I totally disagree with that assumption as well.

Just because an attraction features recognizable characters doesn't make it "cheap".

Jeff Pepper said...

Kingcrab--

You are totally misunderstanding what Craig is expressing. He is noting that the characters have minimal operating costs compared to shows and attractions and WDW has turned them into assets in that sense.

You need to chill, buddy. You can't keep jumping on people when they express anything that is remotely critical of the Disney Company. The company isn't perfect and open and critical discussions can bring about positive changes in many cases.

Acme Girl said...

Nice snapshot of my favorite character. Who knew Disneyland has free-roaming characters more often than Walt Disney World? ...way more often!

Glenn Armor said...

Thank you, Jeff, for pointing that out. I was about to do the same.

Oh! How I wish the characters were that free-roaming in WDW. I've never been to DL and didn't even know this was the case.

Do I remember correctly that years and years ago, it was also like this in WDW???

Peter said...

I agree that characters should be free to have what I call "streetmospheric moments" in WDW (prime examples of this are the Alice and Mad Hatter vids by YouTube user briberry), and it's sad that some people who have ruined it for everyone by being pushy and rude and abusive. All I can say is that characters like Goofy and his kind should be treated with alot more respect than what we give them.