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Sunday, August 05, 2007

Don't Sell Your Soul To Disney.

Have I really grown into the jaded, grumpy old cow I always swore I would never be? I've just spent four days in various Disney World parks in lovely, skin-blistering Orlando, and I could barely see the gleam I once thrilled at for the sheer magnitude of marketing. Just about every ride was sponsored by another huge business, making me wonder if Disney had to pay for anything beyond repairs and the doubtlessly nominal wages for their tortured staff... Even the paper towels in the bathrooms were proudly sponsored by Brawny.
What was really sad was EPCOT. There was an "attraction" that implied itself to be a tour through a house of tomorrow, with gadgets only the brilliant minds at Disney would come up with that would spark the imagination of budding future engineers and so on. Instead, it was a prettily set up ad campaign. Everything in the "house" was already invented, for sale, and you could get a flier on each company's product at the end of your sales pitc... Uh, I mean tour.
Instead of cry or get angry, my husband and I simply stifled our snorting as best we could throughout the whoring of various really cool products, especially when our tour guide made those sweeping gesture more befitting those grinning bints on game shows as they indicate the lovely three piece suite the contestant has just won.
We already knew Disney had sold out, but we didn't know Disney had turned its whole theme park into a business brothel!


humble simpleton said...

It's not you, it's the world that is changing, and the curse is greed, IMHSO. Once upon the time, filmmakers used to make films, now they are making money, musicians used to make music, now they are making money. Etc. etc. exceptions exist of course. You either make music for the people, or you make money for yourself, and that's the simple difference between Johnny Cash and Madonna. I believe good old Disney meant it good, but now his heirs are devouring his work to the bone.
And btw. all the people are pissed with ad campaigns and the whole ad business, but the same people pay for it in the price of the advertised products, ironic.

TeacherLady said...

I do believe that there are still people who care, but they tend to get stifled by the ignorance of big studios. I think Disney's best days went along with Howard Ashman's death and Alan Menken's eventual fading into the background. Now that they own Pixar, my hopes are that they'll leave the creative side to the artists and just whore the hell out of the products later on, as they tend to do.

I believe in capitalism, but I also believe in art for art's sake (thanks, MGM) and the desire to bring smiles to the faces of children without wondering how much money you can squeeze out of them. I guess that's why I respected Jim Henson far more than any other big name in the entertainment industry.

humble simpleton said...

Somehow I could feel that the Muppets will be included in your response ;-)