Friday, October 31, 2008

Scary Disneyland!

For Halloween, I could have copped out and just posted a Haunted Mansion image or two, but instead, I’m going to post what I think are/were some of the more scary things at Disneyland, beginning with the Old Hag on the original Snow White’s Scary Adventures Dark Ride. We’ve all heard how terrified children were of the original attraction, and even today, just riding around in the dark and having the Old Hag appear can be quite unsettling for the little ones.

Having the Evil Queen guard over the attraction is also a nice subtle touch of foreboding:

And while we’re on Dark Rides, how about Mr. Toad?

Can’t you just hear this mom? “Tommy, you’ve been a bad boy, and now I’m going to make sure we scare the crap out of you!” The helmet-head hairdo is scary enough as it is!

What little kid wouldn’t be terrified of a train coming right at them, or being eternally sent to Hell?

Nothing is more unsettling than viewing The Burning Cabin! In this early shot, there is no settler dead/drunk at the front of the cabin.

Walt upped the creep factor and added him shortly thereafter. Oh yeah, and for good measure, let’s stick an arrow through his heart, okay?

Originally, this Mr. Hyde/Phantom character used to terrify children in front of the Main Street Cinema. I say bring him back!

As you can see, these little weirdos LOVE it! They can’t wait for mom to get frightened!

And for the ultimate in scary, how about these original incarnations of Mickey & Minnie?!? Smiles or no smiles, you know these little tots are going to need a diaper change soon! This shot was taken on opening day in front of the Fantasyland Theater (now the Pinocchio Dark Ride) with comic Jerry Colona.

Walt understood that kids LIKE to be scared. How many times have you heard a kid scream bloody murder and then say, “Hey, let’s do it again!” So readers, what scares you at Disneyland? Happy Halloween to all and here’s to Trick or Treat! UPDATE: for you Gabrielle, here’s Monstro!

See more vintage & current Disneyland photos at my regular website.


The Viewliner Limited said...

Absolutely nothing more freaky and scary than Mickey and Minnie. Great post.

Katella Gate said...

I love the little rubber devils from Mr. Toad. Why hasn't Disney reproduced them yet?

We Want Our Red Rubber Devils!

Daveland said...

Great idea, Katella! Those things would sell like hot cakes!

Katella Gate said...

By the way, any idea when the Mr. Toad interiors were shot? I am looking at the little boy in the car and I NEVER remember seeing the "realistic" backdrop paintings... Only the sketchy, black light art.

When did it change over?

Daveland said...

Katella: The shot of the boy and his mother is one that is from Kevin Kidney; if I had to guess, I would say 1960’s, judging by mom's helmet head!

gabrielle. said...

i am ashamed to admit that the scariest thing about disneyland to me is the part in the pinoccio dark ride where monstro the whale pops out at you. i never sit on the left side, i always hop in the car first. it freaks me out so bad. one time i was brave enough to sit on the side closest to monstro and i snapped a pic of it. i broke some major disneyland etiquette by doing that, i know. but it was worth it.
great post!

Daveland said...

Gabrielle: I have just added Monstro - look at your own risk!

gabrielle. said...

hahahahah!! ok, Dave. that just made my day. when it comes to Disney, you are totally BOSS. that was awesome. i can't believe i got a "shout out" on your blog! i feel like a celebrity now!!!

Major Pepperidge said...

Nice creative post, Dave! That first photo of Mr. Hyde (or is he the Phantom?) is so great, the low angle really adds to the feeling that he is a threat!

Daveland said...

Major - I think that costume did double duty, as the marquee over the years has featured both movies.

John Rozum said...

Great Halloween post. As much as I love the Haunted Mansion I'm glad to see you showcasing some of the other spooky aspects of the park.

WitchsDungeon said...

I love that shot of the original "Old Hag"when I was a kid that sculpt is far more intense than what they have now. I also am thrilled to see the shots of the Phantom outside the Main Street Cinema. I wish I had seen it before I just wrapped up a documentary on all the Phantom films - I would have asked you if I could use it. Those shots bring back fond memories. I knew animator Ward Kimball, some great stories he told me about both the park & Walt.