Our close, personal, online semi-acquaintances over at Theme Park Adventure have gone public with a blog post in which they make exactly, precisely clear why they will not be attending the Disney press event for the opening of World of Color at Disney’s California Adventure. It is an impassioned, gut-wrenching, tale of intrigue, betrayal, and abandonment revolving around Disney’s miserly withholding of all but one ticket to this press event. To quote from an imaginary but thematically related blog post, “Bleh!”
After due consideration, we at DisneyLies.com have decided to join Theme Park Adventure in not going to the premier of this new entertainment, not just because we feel that Disney should have more important considerations that cost and capacity when planning these events, but also because they even went so far as to never send us an invitation in the first place. Some might ask why a site such as DisneyLies that prefers to stay completely off Disneyland’s radar (in order to maintain our journalistic “integrity”) would even want an invitation, but there’s a big difference between desiring not to be sued into oblivion and not wanting to accept cool free stuff! In fact, if Disney would spend more time sending us awesome things we don’t need but can brag about out sell on eBay, perhaps we wouldn’t have felt the need to publish such articles as our recent “Robert Iger, Secret Zombie?” and “The Ducks of Disneyland: Their Diseases, Mutations, and Homicidal Urges.”
And we’re not the only ones joining in this protest. DisneyLies contacted (though secret means known only to professional bloggers) other prominent online content developers and asked if they would be attending this premier if offered only a single ticket. The response was incredible, ranging from “You’re aware that I live in Florida, right?” to “Why are you even writing to me?” to “554 permanent problems with the remote server.” Truly the online community has spoken!
We received one particularly impassioned reply from Peter “the Pan” Poultry at the Attraction Watchdog in Mom’s Basement Report: “There was a time when Disney would invite media from all over the country to fly down to Disneyland at their expense to attend grand parties for events as minor as the unveiling of a new Main Street trash-can paint scheme. They’d provide catered meals to us and as many guests as we could cram in a hotel suite, showing us an awesome time in return for a few choice ‘unbiased’ words on our blog. But now that the cheapskates have take over at Disney — quoting excuses about ‘shareholder value’ and ‘the economy,’ whatever that is — you’re lucky to get so much as a free jacket or tote bag to go along with your invitation. And the press events are toned down to the point that they hardly even have open bars any more, and how are you supposed to report on this kind of thing when you are sober? And just one invitation is just stupid. I need two assistants just to manage my luggage and churros. I’ll bet that if someone at ABC News wanted more than one pass they’d get it. It’s like those guys have some kind of secret ‘in’ with Disney or something.”
Now, some of you will say that Disney has every right to manage its press events as it pleases, or point out that even though original estimates for World of Color’s capacity were estimated at 9,000, they turned out to be more like 6,000 with viewing spots that have perfect conditions numbering in the dozens and this means that ideally only a limited number of press should attend. But what about history? What about loyalty? Theme Park Adventure has been reporting on Disney for almost-16 years, and DisneyLies.com has been at it for 7 (14 in dog years). But that’s nothing compared to some of the people that Disney snubbed on this occasion.
Let’s look at the grassroots Disney fan who I’m sure we can all agree is most deserving of an invitation to this grand event. Helena VanDerMcVonO’Donalley has been President of the Northern Arizona Mickey Mouse Club Fan Club from its inception back in 1955. Since that time, she has delivered the venerable “NAMMC FaCluNe: The Northern Arizona Mickey Mouse Club Fan Club Newsletter,” in hand-typed form to everyone on her dwindling list of fan-club members almost without fail whenever time and health permits. But did she receive an invitation to the World of Color premier? No. Although Helena was unable to comment on the situation (do to a persistent vegetative coma that overtook her in 2003), she is certainly disappointed. And even if she had been invited, would Disney have insisted that she be content with a single pass? Couldn’t she bring her nurse? Or her husband’s remains? Or someone to push her hospital bed around for her? And what if she had wanted to attend with her sons, Mickey and Donald, or her daughters, Minnie, Pluto, and Goofy, two of whom are not on speaking terms with her for reasons the family says should be obvious but who might have wanted to finally end their silly feud and allow Helen’s final days to be lived in familial unity if World of Color premier tickets were in the offering? But no, Disney would rather leave Helen and those like her to their misery rather than make the DCA lake a little bigger to accommodate everyone that really deserves to be included at this historic event.
So, in closing, good for you, Theme Park Adventure for sticking to your guns and rejecting an invitation that is really nothing more than a backhandedly flattering, highly desirable insult. We at DisneyLies will proudly not attend the event with you.
(Unless we’re invited, of course.)