Toy Story Midway Mania control panel

The Toy Story Midway Mania queue was really quite enjoyable. The walkway was smooth and free of any significant potholes, as if it had been built only months ago. Interior areas sported fans mounted to the ceiling to move air about and keep everyone cool — a neat innovation that we hope Imagineers export to other locations, and perhaps even private homes.

At one point, as the queue is approaching the ride’s loading area, guests pass immediately behind the attraction’s control panel. Glancing at the panel, guests who have detailed knowledge of Disney’s ultra-secret covert corporate intellectual capital protectorate guidelines (volume 2, chapter 6, subsection 3, paragraph 2, second bullet, sentence beginning with the phrase, “Devastating breach of security or confidentiality”) will notice something interesting — this attraction’s self-destruct button does not have a double-action safeguard, meaning that only a single button push is required to wipe the computer core and set off charges in unique or proprietary equipment.

Toy Story Midway Mania control panel

Why might this be? Apparently, the competitive heat between Disneyland and other entertainment destinations in Southern California has increased significantly in recent months. Disney has seen Legoland sign an exclusive contract with a company that makes robotic arms that can be used either as ride vehicles or valet parking attendants, Universal Studios Hollywood just opened its new Simpsons-Themed Disney Parodizer (and closed its short-lived but highly publicized Giant Flaming Kong attraction), and Knotts Berry Farm and Six Flags Magic Mountain are both still not bankrupt for one reason or another. This means that the potential for corporate espionage and spying is currently quite high, and explains why those of us attending the attraction preview were photographed, fingerprinted, and asked to verify that we were not associated with anyone on the “Mickey’s Enemies” list.

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