Archive for May, 2009

Beauty and the Beast and…

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

We’re still in the process of sorting through all the photographs taken during our recent Walt Disney World sabbatical, but a piece of news came across the DisneyLies desk (in an unmarked envelope, addressed in crayon) that we just can’t wait to share.

Apparently, Disney plans to announce on Monday that in 2010 they will be rereleasing the animated classic Beauty and the Beast with all-new additional animation. Said supposed Lead Animation Director of Animating Animation Jade Austin, “This will be the first time that Disney has reworked one of its animation classic, not just to add new footage, but to add additional characters and animation to existing scenes, completely changing the tone and plot of the film.”

Austin continues, “Beauty and the Beast and Zombies will be much darker than the original film, and though the plot will be more significantly about how the cruel beast’s massive strength and claws make him the epitome of warriors against the undead, we haven’t lost sight of the love story that is at the heart of B&B.”

Rumor has it that the final battle between Beast and a certain stuck-up undead hunter has to be seen to be believed, and when animated furniture returns to life after being smashed in the castle invasion, a chill is guaranteed to go up every spine. The (much more threatening) version of “Be Our Guest” should also be quite a hit. It is possible that the ending — in which the titled couple is devoured after Belle’s love turns Beast human — will prove controversial.

We asked Austin how this project was developed. “It’s something that’s been floating around the halls for years. We thought of a number of possible ways to go with the ‘add a zombie’ idea — The Fox and the Hound and Zombies, Lady and the Tramp and Zombies, 101 Zombie Dalmatians, Snow White and the Seven Brain-Eating Undead Dwarfs — but Beauty and the Beast just seems perfect for this treatment. We hope you find it as horrifying as we do!”

’50s Prime Time Cafe: Menu

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

To give you an idea of what’s available when you dine at Disney’s Hollywood Studios’ ’50s Prime Time Cafe, here are a few sample items from a recent menu.


  • Lightning McQueen Raceway Punch: Raspberry lemonade served by your “older brother” who gives you a punch in the arm for ordering “a sissy drink with a light toy stuck in it.”
  • Mickey’s Bee Bop: Cherry soda served with an ice cube that has a bee frozen in it.
  • Flavored Sodas: Coke blended with vanilla, cherry, or maple syrup, “depending on what what ol’ cousin Buford whipped up in the bathtub.”


  • Chicken Noodle Soup: Served “just like Mama used to make” (to sick guests only).
  • Mixed Green Salad: Served with house dressing that tastes a little off but if you take a bite and make a face, “your face is going to freeze like that.”
  • Onion Rings for Two: Because you don’t need to be a pig and eat all of them yourself.

Main Course

  • Grandma’s Chicken Pot Pie: Just like Grandma used to make, but without the complaining, lame old-time stories, and occasional incontinence.
  • Mom’s Old-Fashioned Pot Roast: Proving that, even though it’s the ’50s, Mom was a child of the ’60s.
  • Crazy Cousin Buford’s Stuffed Pepper: Nobody has any idea what’s in this thing.
  • Trendy Little Sister’s Fish Sandwich: We’re guessing that she doesn’t understand that fish isn’t vegetarian.
  • Dad’s Traditional Meatloaf: Thick ground beef with thick sauce and a mound of mashed potatoes. (Not recommended for individuals with heart conditions.)
  • Stacked like the Cheerleader Next Door Sandwich: Mounds of chicken breast wrapped tight in a fried-dough “sweater.”


  • Dad’s Brownie Sundae: No, you can’t have a bite.
  • Grandma’s Bread Pudding: Seriously, get your own.
  • Baby Brother’s Ice Cream Sundae: Sorry, he’s not going to share.
  • Mom’s Fruit and Cottage Cheese Plate: This you can have.

When we visited, we checked out the menu and decided to order a Diet Coke. Here it is:

'50s Prime Time Diet Coke

The Diet Coke was delicious and nicely matched the restaurant’s decor and atmosphere. It also went well with the rest of our meal, which was quite good.

’50s Prime Time Cafe

Monday, May 11th, 2009

’50s Prime Time Cafe is a unique, atmosphere-rich eatery found in Disney’s Hollywood Studios (it was moved there from Disney MGM Studios in 2008). The restaurant is decorated like a gigantic stereotypical 1950’s family sitcom house, from the plastic flowers to the tacky knickknacks, to the ankle-height end tables, just made for wacky slapstick antics.

There are no cast members here, but rather family members. If your server is a woman, she isn’t a waitress, she’s “Mom,” ready to make sure you eat your peas, clean your plate, and feel guilty for not calling her more often. If you’ve got “Dad” waiting on you, he’s wearing a suit, smoking a pipe, giving out advice, and calling “Mom” over from another table whenever actual work needs to be done. And of course there’s “Brother,” bussing tables, giving out random wedgies to unsuspecting diners, and saying “good boy!” to Fido, who is constantly underfoot.

Each table (either a Formica counter or a TV tray) has a small television on or near it, showing clips from old black-and-white family sitcoms. Observant guests will notice that every show has a common theme — something wacky or embarrassing that happens to someone who harasses or under-tips a waiter or waitress.

The dining experience is quite unique. Mom makes you set your own table and gives you “homework” to do while you wait for your food to arrive. (For example, she might ask you to calculate the corporate profit on an annual pass or list the atomic weights of everything on the table.)

We’ll talk more about the food in a future post, but suffice to say it has a heavy emphasis on comfort and sitcom-like fun. For example, here’s the meatloaf, a popular entree:

'50s Prime Time meatloaf

After you eat and Mom has confirmed that you cleaned your plate (because there are children starving in China), you bring your dirty dishes to the kitchen and wash them before you are allowed to pay your bill, brush your teeth, and “go out to play until bed time.”

A few entertaining bits of dialogue overheard in the Cafe:

  • You want what they’re having? If they jumped off a bridge, would you do that, too?
  • That napkin isn’t going to pick itself up.
  • I’m not going to ask you again — what would you like to order?
  • How do you know you don’t like it if you haven’t tasted it?
  • You want me to take that back? What am I, your maid?
  • What part of “we don’t serve Pepsi” don’t you understand?
  • It’s no use crying over spilled Lightning McQueen Raceway Punch.
  • Don’t put that in your mouth; you don’t know where it’s been.
  • If you’re going to the restroom, call me when you get there, just so I know you’re okay.
  • Why are glowing ice cubes extra? Because I said so, that’s why.
  • If I told you once I told you a thousand times, appetizers aren’t included.
  • I know it isn’t fair that the dining plan no longer includes a tip. Well, life isn’t fair.
  • This bill is going to hurt me more than it hurts you.
  • I brought you into Disney World and I can take you back out!
  • Don’t eat that — you’ll get worms!
  • You call that a tip? Do you think I’m made of money?
  • Everyone got clean underwear?

Stilt workers arrive

Sunday, May 10th, 2009

During our recent trip to Walt Disney World, we were lucky enough to make the acquaintance of “Bugsy” — a Magic Kingdom cast member who assured us that he was a lead with special privileges (but, unfortunately, had forgotten his ID and name badge that day). After hearing that we were researching material for our Web site, he let us into the Magic Kingdom via the pre-opening employee entrance (a fence near the rail yard that must be scaled when the guard dogs are between rounds).

We learned quite a bit about how the Magic Kingdom prepares before opening. We photographically captured one highlight —

Stilt workers arrive

— the daily “arrival of the stilt workers.” It was truly spectacular!

Return from WDW

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

The DisneyLies team has returned from its research trip to Walt Disney World and is busily digging through piles of paperwork, photographs, and credit-card bills so we can put together a whole mess of high-quality (sic.) content for our loyal readers. We’ll have attraction descriptions, restaurant reviews with photos, and all sorts of cool stuff (assuming we actually can get our acts together — WDW’s time zone is six over and two up from our home, and the jet lag is horribly disorienting, as is the prospect of having to go through so much material on our Tivo).

A few quick things we picked up during the trip:

  • The nice folks in Epcot’s Mexico pavilion have heard all the swine flu jokes already.
  • The nice folks in Epcot’s France pavilion seem unable to grasp even the simplest “wine flu” pun.
  • Yelling “swine flu” after sneezing in a crowded airport can get you arrested.