Tag Archives: Disney Parks

Disney Kingdoms: Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (BTMRR) is an iconic attraction at the Disney Parks. They have a little bit different theme to them, but they are all run away mine trains! And Marvel Comics has taken that run away train and turned it into the Wildest Comic in the Wilderness and put it in their Disney Kingdoms collection!

This is my first post talking about Disney Kingdoms, but in fact BTMRR is the 3rd story to come out of this collection. The 1st to come out was Seekers of the Weird, based on Disney Legend Rolly Crump’s Museum of the Weird. (If you don’t know what Museum of the Weird is… in a nutshell, Rolly Crump made up some really weird stuff when Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion was being imagined. Walt liked what he had, but didn’t know how it would fit. So Walt decided to have a “Museum of the Weird” that guess would walk thru after riding the Haunted Mansion. After Walt passed away, the museum idea got scrapped… Until this comic.)

The 2nd comic to come out in the Disney Kingdoms was Figment, based on that little purple dragon in Journey Into Imagination in Epcot. This series did so well that Marvel is come out with Figment 2, due out September 2015.

I’ll do a post on those first two series later, this one is about Big Thunder Mountain Railroad!

Story of the attractions are this: Big Thunder was sacred ground for local Indian tribes and the spirit of Big Thunder was not happy with the gold being removed from the mountain. The town(s) (different at different parks) and mining company suffered accidents from earthquakes (in Disneyland and Disneyland Paris) and flooding (in Magic Kingdom). The trains themselves began operating on their own, possessed by mischievous spirits. The town(s) became abandoned, but visitors still come to ride the haunted trains. (I feel like I should be eating a s’more telling that story… or at least a churro! Haha!)

Anyway, writer Dennis Hopless, artist Tigh Walker, along with the cover artists Pasqual Ferry (issues #1, #2, and #3) and Marcio Takara (issues #4, and #5) did an AMAZING job putting names and faces into the story of BTMRR. Now I don’t want to do a big old review on this series, but I do want to show some of the artwork and lil’ gems that were put into the story.

First off, the 5 covers!

(Cover Artiest: Pasqual Ferry)

(Cover Artiest: Pasqual Ferry)

(Cover Artiest: Pasqual Ferry)

(Cover Artiest: Pasqual Ferry)

(Cover Artiest: Pasqual Ferry)

(Cover Artiest: Pasqual Ferry)

(Cover Artiest: Marcio Takara)

(Cover Artiest: Marcio Takara)

(Cover Artiest: Marcio Takara)

(Cover Artiest: Marcio Takara)

Now, have you ever watch a Disney movie and seen the little Easter Egg’s (Hidden Mickey’s) the animators slip in? I love to watch Disney movie and look for those… And Marvel does it in these comics. Some are part of the stories. Some are just in the background. But I think they are a perfect way to really connect the comic to the attraction.

Like good ol’ Banabas T. Bullion. (If you haven’t been on BTMRR in the Magic Kingdom at WDW in a while, take a look at this guy… he looks a little familiar…)

Tony Baxter looking out from his window on Main Street? Haha!

Tony Baxter looking out from his window on Main Street? Haha!

And there’s this smiling guy! No “bones” about it, you’ve seen him.

Bones

The busy town of Rainbow Ridge!

Rainbow Ridge

DUCK! …I mean GOAT!!!

The Goat

Like I said, I don’t want to give anything away. But here is a small look inside the mine… Ohh… colors!

Rainbow Caverns

And it’s not Disney without…

A Hidden Mickey

A Hidden Mickey

BTMRR is a must get for any Disney Park fan. As are the other two series, Seekers of the Weird and Figment. They are great backstories to the attractions we all love! But here’s what is cool! The editors have expressed a goal of creating a cohesive “Disney Earth” composed of these attraction stories with connections becoming more apparent as the imprint goes on. (I got this statement from Disney Wiki. I did read it a while back in Marvel’s website, but can not find it at this time.)

There are 2 options to get these series: 1) Get the issue, one at a time, as they become available. And 2) You can get the Hardcover after all 5 issues have been released. In the Hardcover you get ALL 5 issues!

The Hardcovers for Seekers of the Weird and Figment are out now! And Hardcover for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad goes on sale in October, 2015.

Anyway, Disney Kingdoms: Big Thunder Mountain Railroad… go get it if you want to know why that mountain is so upset! And while you’re at it, pick up Seekers and Figment! (I’ll have a post on those later.)

Thanks for reading! °o°

Art of the Disney Parks

One of my favorite things to see at Disney Parks is the attraction posters! Back when Disneyland opened, Walt had some of his artist create these amazing posters to give guests a little preview of the adventures they will see and live in his park. They are a lot like the movie posters you see at your local movie theater showing what is playing or coming soon.

IMG_20150727_182308

Attraction posters in the park (Picture is from the book)

Poster Art of the Disney Parks by Danny Handke and Venessa Hunt was a book I HAD TO HAVE! I started my collection of (what I call) Vintage Disney Attraction Posters when I was younger (don’t remember the exact year), and when this book was announced I knew I had to get it. I mean, it’s a book about Disney Parks, Disney History… and it’s mostly pictures! Haha!

Pirates of the Caribbean was my very first poster. I got it (ordered it) from the Disney Gallery when it was located in what is now the Disney Dream Suite, above the Pirates of the Caribbean in Disneyland.

Pirates of the Caribbean (1967), Disneyland by Collin Campbell (Picture from my collection)

Pirates of the Caribbean (1967), Disneyland by Collin Campbell (Picture from my collection)

In the book, they not only show you posters that you can see in the parks today. But also some concept artwork.

Pirates of the Caribbean concepts, Disneyland by Collin Campbell

Pirates of the Caribbean concepts, Disneyland by Collin Campbell

Who doesn’t love the Jungle Cruise!?

Jungle Cruise (River) (1955), Disneyland and WDW by Bjorn Aronson (Picture from my collection)

Jungle Cruise (River) (1955), Disneyland and WDW by Bjorn Aronson (Picture from my collection)

And here are some concepts that were drawn up for Walt Disney World.

Jungle Cruise concept, WDW by Sam McKim

Jungle Cruise concept, WDW by Sam McKim

Jungle Cruise concept, WDW by Sam McKim

Jungle Cruise concept, WDW by Sam McKim

Jungle Cruise concept, WDW by Sam McKim

Jungle Cruise concept, WDW by Sam McKim

The book gives you a quick example of the Screen Printing Steps.

Screen Printing Steps Example

Above I showed my Jungle “River” poster. It was there to help promote the Jungle Cruise at Disneyland in 1955. But the same print is also use in Walt Disney World. Sometimes they use the prints in more the one park. And other times they will just change a couple of details (adapt) to make them park specific. This first picture is of Disneyland’s Monorail, the second is of WDW’s Monorail.

Disneyland Monorail (1961), Disneyland by Paul Hartley (Picture from my collection, signed my Bob Gurr)

Disneyland Monorail (1961), Disneyland by Paul Hartley (Picture from my collection, signed my Bob Gurr)

Walt Disney World Monorail System (1971), WDW by Colin Cambell

Walt Disney World Monorail System (1971), WDW by Colin Cambell

(Side note on the Disneyland Monorail poster. This one is my favorite out of my collection. My wife got it for me for Christmas. And that ‘scribble’ under the Monorail is actually Bob Gurr’s autograph. No really, I have the letter of authenticity to prove it! ) 🙂

Kind of cool to see them side-by-side and see the little differences. Another couple of posters I like to see side-by-side is the Haunted Mansion posters.

Haunted Mansion (1969), Disneyland by Ken Chapman and Marc Davis (Picture from my collection)

Haunted Mansion (1969), Disneyland by Ken Chapman and Marc Davis (Picture from my collection)

Haunted Mansion (1971), WDW by George Jenson (Picture from my collection)

Haunted Mansion (1971), WDW by George Jenson (Picture from my collection)

Same poster design, the mansion is different in the background to match the park. This next poster is cool too! Still has that “haunted” feel, as the other ones, but a different style with more detail.

Phantom Manor (1992), Disneyland Paris by Dan Goozee

Phantom Manor (1992), Disneyland Paris by Dan Goozee

I can talk about EVERY poster in this book, but I’m not going to. Instead I’m going to just show posters from my collection and some in the book. So please enjoy this old school slideshow method… (you just keep scrolling down to see the next picture. I don’t have to a budget to get all fancy. Haha!)

Matterhorn Bobsleds (1959), Disneyland by Paul Hartley

Matterhorn Bobsleds (1959), Disneyland by Paul Hartley

Matterhorn Bobsleds concept by Paul Hartley

Matterhorn Bobsleds concept by Paul Hartley

Space Mountain (1977), Disneyland by Jime Michaelson, Ernie Prinzhorn, and Ruby Lord (Pictured from my collection)

Space Mountain (1977), Disneyland by Jime Michaelson, Ernie Prinzhorn, and Ruby Lord (Pictured from my collection)

Space Mountain (2010), WDW by Josh Holtsclaw

Space Mountain (2010), WDW by Josh Holtsclaw

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (1979), Disneyland and WDW by Jim Michaelson, Rudy Load, and Greg Paul (Picture from my collection)

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (1979), Disneyland and WDW by Jim Michaelson, Rudy Load, and Greg Paul (Picture from my collection)

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad concept, Disneyland and WDW by Jim Michaelson

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad concept, Disneyland and WDW by Jim Michaelson

Okay, stop scrolling of a sec. This next two posters I think are really cool. This first one is for the Flying Saucers. Cool design by Rolly Crump. The next one is for Luigi’s Flying Tires. (Yes, I know both of those attractions weren’t the best and aren’t around anymore. But here is why I think these two are cool.) Flying Tires came around about 50 years after Flying Saucers. Flying Tires was the same as Flying Saucers, just updated a little(ish). I think same can be said about the posters. The man sitting in the Flying “Tire” looks pretty similar to the man sitting in the Flying “Saucer”. And both posters have kind of the same “look” to them. I looked at these two posters and think of it as a nod to the original attraction!

Flying Saucers (1961), Disneyland by Rolly Crump

Flying Saucers (1961), Disneyland by Rolly Crump

Luigi's Flying Tires (2010), DCA by Greg Maletic

Luigi’s Flying Tires (2010), DCA by Greg Maletic

This book has it all! They show posters that can be found in the parks today, concept artwork, and even posters for attractions that are now gone and missed. I find it really fun to just thumb thru the book and look at the different posters up close. It kind of takes me back to the parks… you know? But I also like to use the book as a kind-of catalog to help narrow down which posters I would like to get the next time I’m at the parks. Haha! Here are some that are on my list for my next trip. 🙂

Casa de Fritos (1955), Disneyland by Bjorn Aronson (The birthplace of Doritos!)

Casa de Fritos (1955), Disneyland by Bjorn Aronson (The birthplace of Doritos!)

Mr. Toad's Wild Ride (2008), Disneyland by Danny Handke

Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride (2008), Disneyland by Danny Handke

“it’s a small world” 1964-65 New York World’s Fair by Paul Hartley (1963)

PeopleMover (1967), Disneyland by Ken Chapman

PeopleMover (1967), Disneyland by Ken Chapman

(All the pictures in this post were taken from my personal collection or from the book.)

If you have a chance, I highly suggest getting this book if you’re a Disney Parks fan. Totally worth it! Thanks for reading!