"Old" EPCOT vs "New" EPCOT?

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Captain Schnemo
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Re: "Old" EPCOT vs "New" EPCOT?

Post by Captain Schnemo » Sep Thu 20, 2007 3:55 am

MansionButler wrote:The Universe of Energy has almost no relevence anymore, when it's based around a topic that is EXTREMELY important today.
It was extremely important in 1982, and if anyone had paid serious attention to the issue, the world would be a much better place today. I'd like to say Universe of Energy appropriately addressed the issue back then, but it was about as tepid and useless as Ellen's show. At least it didn't have Ellen.

Anyway, I just wanted to say how gratifying it is to read this thread. Millions of years ago (well, ten) I was complaining about the shift from "old" to "new" and almost everyone said I was making a big deal about nothing.

I just hope this sentiment results in positive changes at the park itself.

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Post by casrin » Sep Thu 20, 2007 2:15 pm

I dunno, Schnemo. I found it easier to stay awake at Universe of Energy with Ellen, because it was more amusing. 45 minutes of being lectured at vs 45 minutes of indirect learning (while laughing at Ellen being stupid).... know what I mean?
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Post by JWG » Sep Thu 20, 2007 9:41 pm

UofE needs to be brought into the 21st century and really dedicate itselft to energy of the future. Get away from fossil fuels and start discussions around the next generation of fuel.
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Post by Captain Schnemo » Sep Fri 21, 2007 3:10 am

casrin wrote:I found it easier to stay awake at Universe of Energy with Ellen, because it was more amusing. 45 minutes of being lectured at vs 45 minutes of indirect learning (while laughing at Ellen being stupid)....
Well, I half-agree. I found it easier to stay awake during the Ellen show because, while the old one was dry and dull, the Ellen version actually made me angry. While you were laughing at Ellen's stupidity, my blood pressure was slowly rising as I realized that I was being asked to relate to an idiot and that idiocy was ultimately rewarded in a park that's supposed to celebrate the achievements of the greatest minds on Spaceship Earth.

As for creating a show worthy of the topic, that's not going to happen as long as an oil company continues to sponsor it. That's one flaw that emerged from the strange combination of theme park and functioning business park that resulted from mutating the original EPCOT plans into Epcot.

Also, just because I see some new faces who haven't heard me spout all the same stuff over and over, I'd like to re-plug this awesome Universe of Energy site. It's just about the worst-designed web site I've ever seen in my life, but the detailed examination of the ride tech is fantastic nerd porn.

As proof of the goods, which you might not believe exist (even if you spend 10 minutes poking around the site!), this and this highlight some of the changes the dinosaur area went through. And if you want to get your geek on, the links on the right side of this page are particularly fascinating.

I will die a more fulfilled man knowing I've read the articles on the ride control system and operator consoles, as well as all the information about the special effects that I thought I imagined as a kid. If anyone has the vague notion that the dinosaur scene used to be a lot more dramatic than it is now, but you can't put your finger on exactly what is missing, that's the page to read.
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Post by yodiwan1 » Sep Sat 22, 2007 12:59 pm

This past week I have been copying old family videos to DVD. When I came across old footage of Horizons and World of Motion I got chills. Horizons was always a fan favorite, from when you walked in smelling the oranges, to the ending where you got to choose your destination of ending. Even though Mission Space is unique ride, after the first 2 times I have ridden it, I could only go on the lighter version now. With so much land available i dont see why new attraction always have to bump classic attractions out. I do like Test Track, and even the new Imagination ride. I don't think that either compare the their previous rides, but they would have been great if they would not have "replace" them. WOM had a great story and soundtrack. I also miss the original songs in SSE and LWTL. :mickey:
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Post by casrin » Sep Sat 22, 2007 1:09 pm

JWG wrote:UofE needs to be brought into the 21st century and really dedicate itselft to energy of the future. Get away from fossil fuels and start discussions around the next generation of fuel.
Good point.

Captain,

I agree with you that its an important issue and probably should be given more serious attention than they gave energy by using Ellen. At the same time (and this will sound bad), I often think of advice I was given on speech-writing when I was in college. Professors would say that - when addressing the "common audience," you had to write and speak for the assumption you're addressing a 6th grade audience.

In other words, not too technical, not too intelligent. You have to water everything down to a level that other people can understand... even though there's a wealth of information from the informed position.

Sad, huh?

I can see where the Ellen version of UoE would be a fishing hook in a lake. It was corny, but there'd be enough to potentially "hook" someone to do a little more learning on their own time, afterward. An exposure to the issues rather than a college dissertation on it, you know?
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Post by Esmeralda » Sep Sat 22, 2007 4:04 pm

It is true, very few people will be excited about a lecture on energy. They'll go once, but they often won't be interested in the real heavy technological stuff unless it's presented with a little humor. Having taken a lot of technical courses, that's at least how I see things!

Sure, Ellen may need an update, but the general idea of using multiple sources for energy, especially brainpower, is still relevant today. This is one of the few "new" Epcot rides I enjoy more than the original (which didn't really excite me when I saw it as a kid).
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Post by Captain Schnemo » Sep Sun 23, 2007 12:13 am

casrin wrote:...when addressing the "common audience," you had to write and speak for the assumption you're addressing a 6th grade audience.
Sure, but not moronic sixth graders. My beef is that Ellen is portraying a stupid person and they are asking you to relate to the stupid person, and then later reward her for being stupid.

Probably no one in history has a better track record of entertaining both children and adults simultaneously, from Snow White all the way up to the Pixar movies, but while those movies can be enjoyed by children (even stupid children!), they don't insult the intelligence of everyone else at the same time.
In other words, not too technical, not too intelligent.
I don't agree with that at all. You can never be too intelligent. I agree that it is necessary to keep the children (and the stupid) engaged or it's a failure, but that doesn't mean you can't fill it with brilliant details that most people won't notice but non-stupids will.

Attractions often work on different levels, and you don't need to get all of them to be entertained. Disney does (or at least did) this all the time, which is why elitist artists and scholars loved Disney as much has little kids and simpletons.
I can see where the Ellen version of UoE would be a fishing hook in a lake.
I don't see it as inspiring interest in energy at all. It wraps everything up in a nice little bundle at the end, refuses to challenge the audience in any way, and implies that the on-screen idiot and the audience now know all they need to know about energy after just a few minutes of talking to Bill Nye the Science Guy.
Esmerelda wrote:They'll go once, but they often won't be interested in the real heavy technological stuff unless it's presented with a little humor.
I don't have any objection to humor, but I think Ellen's brand of humor (pretending to be confused) doesn't lend itself to repeat viewings. No one is going to say "Here comes the great part where Ellen pretends to be dumb again!"...at least I hope not! It's a one-time gag, unlike situational humor which can be funny countless times. It's just like that overused "oh no, something has suddenly gone wrong!" gimmick so many thrill rides use. It works once, and then it's just lame.
...the general idea of using multiple sources for energy, especially brainpower, is still relevant today.
My point is that it was just as relevant 25 years ago (there are very few issues that are moreso both then and now), and it's never been a serious part of the attraction, because ultimately both shows left you with the idea that oil companies have got it covered, and you shouldn't spend any time worrying about it.

I'm not saying that a Disney attraction should bum you out, but it also shouldn't put dangerous ideas in the heads of the guests, particularly when it's alleging to educate as well as entertain them.
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Post by js3901 » Sep Sun 23, 2007 2:16 pm

because ultimately both shows left you with the idea that oil companies have got it covered, and you shouldn't spend any time worrying about it.
you know, I was just listening to this attraction (the Ellen version) and realized something to this end. they spent alot more time talking about the oil and ways to find (underwater/deep sea drilling platforms, outerspace/satellites). a good 5 minutes where all the they other sources had at most 2.
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Post by Captain Schnemo » Sep Mon 24, 2007 12:50 am

You'll never see this with the current sponsor, but I'd love to see a comparison between the current petroleum situation and ye olden tymes when we used to kill whales for fuel.

You could hardly come up with a better metaphor for unwise use of scarce resources. It would be cool if the families from the Carousel of Progress and Horizons looked back on the early 21st century's practice of burning petroleum for energy with shock, disbelief, and disdain: "You mean they still burnt coal for electricity?? Wasn't that 19th century technology?? What kind of lunatics would pollute the air they need to breathe like that??"

If it weren't Disney and we weren't trying to remain optimistic, we could even go so far as "What's a 'whale'?".

Anyway, from the point of view of the future, they could explain our current problems in a way that's not confrontational, and then move on to a positive vision of what's to come.

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Post by Captain Schnemo » Nov Fri 16, 2007 6:49 am

An interesting bit of perspective from the era of EPCOT Center's birth.

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Post by meticulus9 » Nov Fri 16, 2007 9:41 am

atari.....the good ole' days....lol


quick comment regarding presentations at UoE. i agree that ellen keeps me awake.....though it seems dumber....

BTW the comment regarding presenting at a 6th grade level is correct unless you are positive your audience will understand a more advanced talk/movie etc. and we all know disney caters to the intelligent and the not so intellegent

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Post by Jacca5660 » Nov Fri 16, 2007 10:13 am

Well, I half-agree. I found it easier to stay awake during the Ellen show because, while the old one was dry and dull, the Ellen version actually made me angry. While you were laughing at Ellen's stupidity, my blood pressure was slowly rising as I realized that I was being asked to relate to an idiot and that idiocy was ultimately rewarded in a park that's supposed to celebrate the achievements of the greatest minds on Spaceship Earth.
Did you see The Science Guy? Schnemo, I have to disagree with you on some of this. Let me collect my thoughts and I will post later with my counter points.
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Post by spaulo » Nov Fri 16, 2007 1:14 pm

Captain Schnemo wrote:You can never be too intelligent.
Agreed! Huzzah!

The fear/hatred/distaste for intelligence (or, more precisely, for greater intelligence than one's own) in this society will never, ever cease to amaze me. It doesn't mean Disney (or anyone!) needs to play into it.
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Cranium Command

Post by Leigh » Nov Mon 19, 2007 10:36 am

It was so awesome to hear Cranium Command this morning!

Does anyone know what they are doing with that show/building?

Every time I am there it is not open. I thought it was so clever!

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