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  • The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

    Is it any wonder that people think of Disney's Animal Kingdom as a glorified zoo?

    Animals are fairly limited subject matter for a Disney theme park.

  • #2
    Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

    Ummm..... I tend to disagree.

    You can't argue that animals are a limited subject matter when there are billions of different ones in the worls, so of which haven't even been discovered.

    Ever heard of the giant squid? After centuries of "fish tales", scientists actually found one in deep, deep water last year. Go figure.

    And what about man's facination with the unicorn? Or the dragon? Or the spinx? Animals that have never existed, yet we find countless stories, fables, tales, ideals devoted to man's facination with the creature world and imagination?

    Further, we lookin animals for similarities and characteristics to draw with ourselves. Ever seen a man who looks just like his dog? What's your favorite animal? Why? Further, I dare you to name a disney movie without a friendly pet or vicious wild villian. Come on... I dare ya!

    So, I think we're being a little short sighted on the concept. Sure, there's a wild animal safari as the main attraction, but with a little time, I have faith Disney's Animal Kingdom is becoming so much more.

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    • #3
      Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

      Originally posted by iluvstitch
      Further, we lookin animals for similarities and characteristics to draw with ourselves. Ever seen a man who looks just like his dog? What's your favorite animal? Why? Further, I dare you to name a disney movie without a friendly pet or vicious wild villian. Come on... I dare ya! .
      If when you say "Vicious Wild Villian" as in an animal that is a villian...
      The Incredibles has no animals what so ever .

      But if when you say "Vicious Wild Villian" as in a normal human villain then nevermind....I take back The Incredibles

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      • #4
        Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

        Originally posted by Disney Wrassler
        If when you say "Vicious Wild Villian" as in an animal that is a villian...
        The Incredibles has no animals what so ever .

        But if when you say "Vicious Wild Villian" as in a normal human villain then nevermind....I take back The Incredibles
        well when I said "visious wild villian", I'm meaning scar, the hawk in mulan, Malificant's crow, ect.

        And by the way, the old lady's cat in the tree in the beginning of the movie counts

        "Back off, Lilo... he's all mine!"
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        • #5
          Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

          Originally posted by iluvstitch
          well when I said "visious wild villian", I'm meaning scar, the hawk in mulan, Malificant's crow, ect.

          And by the way, the old lady's cat in the tree in the beginning of the movie counts

          oh yeah . What about Hercu....No wait nevermind it has Phil and pegasus. Pinnoc....No wait that has Monstro, Gideon. Foulfellow, & the Donkeys. I'm stumped now.

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          • #6
            Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

            Humans are animals...Animal Kingdom has one of the strongest themes and stories of any park Disney has ever built--certainly the most unified. Its attendance patterns seem to suggest guests don't think it's a zoo. Compare its attendance to even the most popular zoos in America. No contest. There are infinite possibilities for animal-themed attractions. I would argue "entertainment" is far more limited.
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            • #7
              Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

              Notice, though, that aside from the occasional allegory (Bambi, The Lion King, etc.), animals are usually relegated to supporting roles.

              Disney's Animal Kingdom is yet another of the failed concepts of one Michael Eisner. Someone needs to rethink the park before it continues expanding so haphazardly that it can't be salvaged.

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              • #8
                Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                Originally posted by PragmaticIdealist
                Notice, though, that aside from the occasional allegory (Bambi, The Lion King, etc.), animals are usually relegated to supporting roles.

                Disney's Animal Kingdom is yet another of the failed concepts of one Michael Eisner. Someone needs to rethink the park before it continues expanding so haphazardly that it can't be salvaged.
                I disagree, it's hardly failing, it just suffers from a lack of attractions. Look at the back story of Dinoland, Asia, and Africa for example. Animal Kingdom is much more than a zoo or an animal park, instead it celebrates the natural beauty of nature, man's role in protecting it and destroying it, and the natural cycle of life.
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                • #9
                  Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                  Originally posted by PragmaticIdealist
                  Notice, though, that aside from the occasional allegory (Bambi, The Lion King, etc.), animals are usually relegated to supporting roles.

                  Disney's Animal Kingdom is yet another of the failed concepts of one Michael Eisner. Someone needs to rethink the park before it continues expanding so haphazardly that it can't be salvaged.
                  Well, Mr. PragmaticIdealist, we finally disagree. I've read your posts and found myself nodding and thinking...well I don't need to say anyting because the PragmaticIdealist has already said it, and better than I could have. But here we part ways.

                  If DAK were allowed to fully explore it's original concept of a park filled with animals real, extinct and imagined, as it says on the plaque, it could be a wonderful park. No, it is not about the Human Experience, but that's okay because Epcot is about the Human Experience. I think the two parks compliment each other rather well (theme wise). The theme of Animal Kingdom is the awsome power of nature over man--which is why all human structures are short in compaison to the magestic Tree of Life and powerful Forbidden Mountain (Everest is Eisner's name and I don't like it). The theme is consistent throughout (expect for the odd-ball Dinoland thing, that needs to go). I think DAK is in good shape and would be even better if we could have Beastley Kingdomme complete with Dragons and Unicorns. I am fond of Dragons, ya know.

                  And just for the record, the park was more of a Wells project than an Eisner one. Don't forget Wells was the Seven Summits guy.
                  Last edited by Pete; 01-08-2006, 08:28 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                    Originally posted by PragmaticIdealist
                    Is it any wonder that people think of Disney's Animal Kingdom as a glorified zoo?
                    And Sea World is a glorified aquarium, Epcot is a glorified world's fair and Magic Kingdom is a glorified amusement park. Aren't generalizations fun. [smilie=1,2,24]

                    I'd like to know who these "people" are that consider DAK a glorified zoo, since the people I see going through the gates when I visit don't seem to subscribe to that opinion.

                    Originally posted by PragmaticIdealist
                    Animals are fairly limited subject matter for a Disney theme park.
                    At last count there are approximately 250,000 known living animal species out there. Add to that the number of undiscovered, extinct an imaginary creatures available (Expedition Everest will feature the Yeti), I fail to see where this is a limited subject matter.

                    Originally posted by PragmaticIdealist
                    Disney's Animal Kingdom is yet another of the failed concepts of one Michael Eisner. Someone needs to rethink the park before it continues expanding so haphazardly that it can't be salvaged.
                    How do you think it is expanding haphazardly? The current expansion (Everest) fits so well into the Asia theme, if it weren't for the construction walls, I'd have sworn its been there all along. And I'm pretty sure Joe Rohde and the other imagineers who do the planning for DAK don't plan on putting a Six-Flags style unthemed megalooping coaster right in front of the Tree of Life [smilie=1,36,14].

                    Granted I do have some problems with DAK, mostly with the lack of a table-service restauraunt within the park (and Rainforest Cafe doesn't count in my books), and the short ride list the park currently has (but I think Everest will help in that aspect).

                    But I don't see this great lack of direction in DAK speak of. Could you please elaborate? Where do you see it expanding haphazardly?
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                    • #11
                      Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                      Beastlie Kingdomme seems like it could have been the Tomorrowland of the Magic Kingdoms. A large, popular, and attraction oriented land.

                      I too fail to see the failure in the park's theme.

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                      • #12
                        Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                        Originally posted by Pete
                        If DAK were allowed to fully explore it's original concept of a park filled with animals real, extinct and imagined, as it says on the plaque, it could be a wonderful park. No, it is not about the Human Experience, but that's okay because Epcot is about the Human Experience. I think the two parks compliment each other rather well (theme wise). The theme of Animal Kingdom is the awsome power of nature over man--which is why all human structures are short in compaison to the magestic Tree of Life and powerful Forbidden Mountain (Everest is Eisner's name and I don't like it). The theme is consistent throughout (expect for the odd-ball Dinoland thing, that needs to go). I think DAK is in good shape and would be even better if we could have Beastley Kingdomme complete with Dragons and Unicorns. I am fond of Dragons, ya know.

                        And just for the record, the park was more of a Wells project than an Eisner one. Don't forget Wells was the Seven Summits guy.
                        I like real animals. I like extinct animals who were at one time real. My problem is with the imagined animals and fictions that are part of the equation since zoology is just one of the natural sciences.

                        Dragons, unicorns, and yetis appear to be ways to merely "Disney-fy" and differentiate what is essentially just a zoo.

                        I would prefer that the dragons be left to Fantasyland, and that D.A.K. explore and theatrically present all the natural sciences through cohesive storytelling.... a true, true-life adventure, if you will.

                        If EPCOT's Future World is about human industry, technology, and the applied sciences, D.A.K. should more fully explore the natural sciences in order to be a complement.

                        While naturalistic allegories such as Bambi and The Lion King may be represented there, other fictions certainly do not fit, such as those from "a bug's life", Pocahontas, and Tarzan. Chester and Hester's and Camp Mickey-Minnie also seem to weaken the overall effect of the park. It does have potential, but Disney is simply going in the wrong direction.

                        Disney's Busch Gardens is, ultimately, not a valid idea for a Disney attraction.

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                        • #13
                          Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                          By only being about real animals then the park is just a zoo.

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                          • #14
                            Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                            Originally posted by Slartibardfast

                            I'd like to know who these "people" are that consider DAK a glorified zoo, since the people I see going through the gates when I visit don't seem to subscribe to that opinion.
                            Disney has been having trouble marketing the park ever since it was first opened. Its slogan insists that the attraction is "not a zoo" but, rather, "a new species of theme park". However, I do not see how Disney will ever be able to sell the park in the long term if the attraction continues to restrict itself to zoology.

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                            • #15
                              Re: The Concept for Disney's Animal Kingdom

                              Originally posted by lazyboy97O
                              By only being about real animals then the park is just a zoo.
                              Including unreal animals is a contrivance.

                              A park about zoology, crypto- or otherwise, is far too limited in scope.

                              A park about all the natural sciences, conversely, is something worthy of the Disney name.

                              What is the park wanting to say? Disney needs to justify its creative decisions. Why animals? Why zoology? What do they have to do with Disney, and why are they more important than: astronomy; biology; anthropology; botany; chemistry; etc.?

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