Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Disney Vacation Thoughts: Addendum

This is a continuation of my post here because I remembered I forgot about this on my commute home Thursday evening.

Disney needs to update their hotel rooms. And that surprises me. Usually Disney is on the forefront of the service industry so it’s weird to find them behind on this front. What are they behind on?


Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Disney Vacation Thoughts Round Up

I went on a vacation to Walt Disney World last month and wanted to blog about a few things. There won’t be much rhyme or reason to how I put everything together, so please excuse it.

  • It’s time to update the Carousel of Progress. I know people panic every time it’s closed, even just for standard refurbishment, but it’s time. Watching the final scene, it struck me how dated it is. Sarah’s laptop looks so old and clunky. Controlling household items with our voices is reality now and more advanced than the skit lets on. And daughter Trish mentions a car phone. No child is going to know what the heck a car phone is. And I’m pretty sure this was created at a time when car phones were giving way to cell phones, so I’m not sure why it was included in the first place. So, yes, it’s time for a change.
  • (Also, it’s totally Sarah’s fault the turkey got burnt, not John’s. She’s the one who programmed the oven and didn’t know that it would respond to any numbers he said. That’s very inconvenient, isn’t it?)
  • Can we get something that appeals to picky eaters on the menu? Something beyond rather spicy chicken nuggets, cheeseburgers and hamburgers? Maybe some good salads? Sans cheese or Caesar dressing? Just something that we can order without having to remove nearly everything else. Just…please think of the picky eaters. Please.
  • Also a pastry wall in every hotel would be great. Like the one in Pop Century. I love that thing.
  • Please work on the bus schedules. I mean, most wait times are pretty good. However, there were a few times where I was definitely waiting longer than 20 minutes for a bus. I waited close to 45 minutes for one to the Magic Kingdom because I had just missed an earlier one. My sister missed the park opening because there was such a long wait between Magic Kingdom buses from Riverside. So maybe see which parks take longer to get to from each hotel and add more buses as needed?
  • Does the Frozen ride really deserve such a long wait? (The answer, in my opinion, is no).
  • Disney Springs is a mall.
  • More places to get milkshakes please. My old place no longer has the machine and I’m sad.
  • Also, I think it's time to update the ending video of "The American Adventure." We need to take Lance Armstrong out. 

I think that’s it for now. Just a few suggestions from what was otherwise an enjoyable trip.

Anyone else have suggestions?

Monday, June 26, 2017

Pandora: A Whole New World

Confession time: I was not a big fan of the movie “Avatar,” James Cameron’s big spectacle several years ago. I found it overrated with it not really giving a fresh take on a plot I’ve seen before (one friend calls it “the live action Ferngully”). I believed it was more celebrated for the technology than anything else.

As a fangirl myself, I could understand why it had such a devoted following. It was a whole new world with a new mythology to explore. Pretty much a fan’s dream come true. I’m sure the fandom is still there, creating and expanding the universe. (Hi, Avatar fandom!)

Cameron himself plans two sequels, which keep getting pushed back. But he also partnered with Disney to bring his world, Pandora, to life in the Animal Kingdom. That debuted last month over Memorial Day weekend. Guests staying at a Walt Disney World hotel during the month of June were invited to spend time at Pandora during special hours (11 PM to 1 AM). I was such a guest and decided to go visit the new area my last night there.

And I’m glad I did.

Friday, May 19, 2017

More Time for Timeless

Last week was a crazy one. Jennifer Morrison announced she was leaving Once Upon a Time, it got renewed but most of the cast was joining Morrison in exiting. And amongst all of that, NBC cancelled Timeless.

So come Saturday, I desperately need Eurovision--even if I'm American. Four hours of Europe getting drunk off its ass while performing some weird pop songs? Sign me up!

As I got ready to tweet about the craziness, I saw some good news on my Twitter--Timeless had been uncancelled by NBC! This is an unorthodox move we don't often see from networks and usually not so soon after cancellation. (I'm thinking Jericho here). But Timeless' fanbase was pretty vocal. We kept the show trending on Twitter for almost twenty-four hours after cancellation. So NBC realized they made a big mistake.

Here's to more adventures with Lucy, Wyatt and Rufus. Hopefully we'll be able to find Amy, figure out what happened to Jessica and see if Wyatt and Lucy ever get together.

And I promise to try and finish my recaps of the first season.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Once Upon a Cast Shake Up

Once Upon a Time has officially been renewed for Season 7. As I said in this blog post, Season 7 will feature a "reboot" of the series. What that looks like will only start to be known after tonight's finale. But we do know it will be moving forward without a significant number of current cast members.

Actress Jennifer Morrison, who has played Emma Swan since the pilot, announced Monday morning that she will not be returning for Season 7. She made this in advance of the show's official renewal notice on Thursday, but it seemed that someone was going to announce her departure anyway. She said she wanted to spend more time with her friends and family as well as pursue other projects, all of which are perfectly valid. Morrison did confirm she'll return for one episode of Season 7, though she doesn't know if it will be the premiere or some other episode.

After it was announced that Once would come back for a seventh season, Rebecca Mader (Zelena) posted a message to her Instagram announcing that she was leaving after season six. In it, Mader stated that her departure was not her choice but rather a "creative" decision. The same was the true later when Emile de Ravin (Belle) confirmed that she was leaving as well.

Adam Horowitz and Eddy Kitsis, the co-creators, also confirmed that Josh Dallas (Prince Charming), Ginnifer Goodwin (Snow White), and Jared Gilmore (Henry Mills) will also not be regulars anymore either. Nothing has been said about whether they chose to leave or if it was a creative decision on the show's part. Based on everything I've heard from within the fandom, I believe Dallas and Goodwin opted not to renew their contracts. And if the speculation that Andrew J. West is playing an older Henry is correct, then Gilmore was mostly not asked back.

So is anyone coming back? Yes, the show has confirmed that Lana Parrilla (Regina Mills), Colin O'Donoghue (Captain Hook) and Robert Carlyle (Rumpelstiltskin) will be returning for Season 7. What that means and how the show will now appear is yet to be seen. I know many fans are not happy over this development and I'm not sure how much the General Audience knows yet. I do believe ABC is taking a gamble on the reboot but it could pay out for all we know, bringing new life to the show and new fans. Or it could alienate an already dwindling audience while displeasing a very passionate fanbase.

As I said, everything waits to be seen.

In the meantime, vote for which character you will miss the most.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Beauty and the Beast: Evermore

I was five years old when Disney released “Beauty and the Beast” in 1991. I remember being in the movie theater with my dad and one of my best friends from school, watching the movie. It became my favorite movie right then and there, with Belle being my favorite Disney princess. My dad always credited her for the fact I’m a bookworm, but I always credit my parents for that since they read to me every night and took me to the library often. But Belle always reminded me that there wasn’t anything wrong about being a bookworm or being considered odd. It also reminded me to value a person for who they are, not how they looked. And to never shun someone for being odd.

At first, I was skeptical about them redoing Beauty and the Beast as a live action movie. Naturally, I was worried they would screw everything up. But soon I heard Alan Menken was once again composing, Tim Rice signed on to write lyrics and finally, the cast was announced. It was so top-notch, I got excited.

I decided to go see the movie for my birthday, which was two weeks after it opened. I put on my Belle t-shirt and my Beauty and the Beast watch necklace. (Which needs a new battery). Then we headed down to the theater and watched the movie.

SPOILERS as old as time…

Sunday, April 2, 2017

OUAT: Regina Embraces Herself

Last time on “Once:” Rumple captured Gideon and promised to help him, not wanting to see him turn to darkness. They discovered that the sword could only be reforged using the magic of the one who made it—the Blue Fairy. Gideon caught his fairy godmother but Rumple drained her magic, saving his son from the darkness. He kept the Blue Fairy in a catatonic state, hoping to restore her magic once he and Belle save Gideon.

In flashbacks, we met Beowulf, from one of the first Anglo-Saxon epics. He led an army against the ogres but were soundly defeated. Beowulf was about to be killed when Rumple showed up, using his powers as the Dark One to destroy all the ogres and end the First Ogres’ War. He was hailed as a hero by all—especially Bae—but Beowulf warned he was really a monster.

As villagers gave Bae a hard time due to his father, they came to ask Rumple for his help. They told of a monster called Grendel terrorizing nearby villages and that it killed all the warriors they sent to fight it. So they hoped Rumple would be able to do so. He and Bae set out to find him and Rumple admitted to feeling tempted to use his magic. He entrusted his dagger to Bae and promised to prove to everyone he wasn’t a monster.

Father and son discovered Grendel was really Beowulf. He was going to pin everything on Rumple, turning the villagers against him and letting Beowulf to be a hero again. Rumple tried to reason with him, tried to bring him to the village to prove he was the real Grendel, but Beowulf kept taunting him. Finally, Bae grew so angry, he ordered his father to kill the man and he did.

The darkness started to claim Bae so Rumple made him forget about what happened. Bae then believed his father had given in and ran away, repulsed by the monster he thought Rumple had become.

Meanwhile, Robin made an alliance with Zelena to break out of Storybrooke. They tried to use magic he stole from Regina to break the protection spell on the town line but it didn’t work. Regina caught them and she had it out with Robin. She then agreed to help him get out of dodge, as it were, and he thanked her. Later, she and Zelena had a conversation where she took responsibility for her actions as the Evil Queen. They then discovered Snake!Queen had escaped. The snake found Robin, bit him and turned back into Queenie. She immediately began flirting with him and he seemed intrigued.

Hook spent his day drinking at Granny’s, telling Archie that he was debating telling Emma he killed her grandfather or not. He said he wasn’t the man she deserved but Archie disagreed. Finally, Hook went home to discover Emma had found the ring. She told him yes but he still asked…without revealing his big secret.

Uh oh.

We open in the Enchanted Forest. Two children run into a cabin and then the black guards surround it. The Queen’s carriage pulls up and she asks where Snow White is. One guard tells her that Snow was spotted going into the cabin early that morning and there’s been no movement since. She orders him to gather the villagers so they can see what happens to their princess. Her father pleads with her, saying that killing Snow won’t endear the people to her. She doesn’t want that—she wants Snow’s heart.

Regina enters the cabin and approaches the bed where she thinks Snow is sleeping. She sticks her hand in…and comes out with a handful of straw. Regina storms out, killing a guard as she declares that Snow isn’t there. She tells the gathered villagers that they shouldn’t protect Snow because she doesn’t care for them or love them. But Regina does care and love them.

A familiar voice says that she’s lying. Everyone turns to find Tinkerbell emerging from the woods. Welcome back, Rose. Congrats on the success of iZombie! You rock as Liv! Anyway, she says that Regina doesn’t know anything about love and says she knows it because she was there when Regina threw away her chance at love. Regina asks if she should be living in a tulip somewhere. Tink ignores the dig and tells her that she’s there because it started with her. Because she showed her a future full of love with the Man with the Lion Tattoo. Tink tells Regina that he’s still out there and she should be with him. Regina replies that nobody and nothing dictates her future—especially pixie dust. Tink tells her that pixie dust only shows possibilities and it’s up to us to act on them.

So no, Regina wasn’t obligated to be with Robin. She chose to be.

Anyway, Tink’s not done. She says Regina doesn’t go after love because she feels she doesn’t deserve it. That hits a bit too close to home for Regina and she snaps at Tink. She then tells the villagers she’s going to spare Tink to prove that the pixie is wrong, that she is able to love and that she loves her people. She tells Tink to appreciate her gift.

(It's the Captain of our Ship! Hi, Tink!)