It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for all year — Laughing Place is ready to crown the 2019 Disney Turkey of the Year! This year saw many Disney successes, but there are always a handful of missteps along the way that we’ve collected as our nominees. As usual, we’ve whittled down these embarrassments to five, with only one of them being named our 2019 Turkey of the Year.
Before we reveal our champion, let’s take a look at the nominees and why each one made our list.
Disneyland (Temporarily) Adds Merchandise to the Main Street Cinema
Disneyland fans got quite a shock this past June when, suddenly, the famed Main Street Cinema tried something a bit different. While guests would previously pass through a turnstile to enter a darkened room showing several short cartoons, on this day you’d walk in to find merchandise displays and cash registers… while the movies were still playing. Naturally, DisTwitter proceeded to lose it. Thankfully, the resort soon abandoned the idea and, instead, added some benches to the area for guests to sit on while they watched the flicks. To their credit, that idea seems to have worked as, anecdotally, there’s been a noticeable uptick in Cinema attendance ever since.
ABC Shoehorns Galaxy’s Edge References into Several Shows
Here’s a fun game to play: whenever you’re watching ABC news programs such as Good Morning America or The View, count how many times they need to disclose that Disney is the parent company of the network. Hint: it’s an awful lot. Sure, it makes sense that Disney would want to use their broadcast arm to promote their other projects but they do have a tendency to get carried away these days. This was never more clear than when they made a “fun promotion” of having several shows in ABC’s primetime line-up work in plugs for the newly-opened Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Luckily, none of them were as over-the-top as you might see on General Hospital but most still earned a massive eye roll from us.
Docking Bay 7 Tones Down Its Menu Theming
Speaking of Galaxy’s Edge, some might suggest that the reason Disney needed ABC to stump so hard for the expansion was due to the low number of guests coming out to see it. While it’s true that the parks did see some surprisingly soft attendance days, we learned in the recent earnings call that those who did make the trip to Batuu spent plenty of their Earthly dollars while there. Still, the company has made some changes to make the deeply immersive land more approachable — namely altering some of the menu item listings at Docking Bay 7 to make it clearer what they actually are. These “off planet-friendly” monikers have continued to evolve since their debut, with a hybrid option currently in place, so we’ll have to wait and see what comes next.
Ever since the Disney Skyliner was officially announced, it seemed as though the project had been operating ahead of schedule. In fact, gondola testings had been seen throughout the Walt Disney World for months before they made their grand debut this September. And yet, not a week later, the resort’s new mode of transportation was closed indefinitely after a multiple-hour breakdown of the Epcot line made national news. Of course, the Skyliner would reopen a few days later, although downtime still seems to plague the system. In any case, it certainly wasn’t a good look for Disney — and definitely wasn’t so magical for those trapped in the sky that night.
Disney Parks Debut Costumes with Frozen 2 Spoilers on Film’s Opening Day
The Walt Disney Company has come to take spoilers very seriously. From Marvel to Star Wars, the company has become famous for instilling fear in its talent in regards to leaking secrets. That’s why it’s pretty ironic that, hours after Frozen 2 debuted in theatres, the Disney Parks debuted new costumes for Anna and Elsa that contained some major plot spoilers for the new film. Moreover, thanks to the way timezones work, photos of the all-too-telling outfits at Hong Kong Disneyland showed up on social media around the same time U.S. theatres were getting ready to start their first shows. Now, one could argue that the costumes are only obviously spoilers to those who have seen the film while those who haven’t might overlook certain aspects, but it still seems like Disney could have waited the customary two weekends or so before giving one of the film’s biggest “twists” away.
And the 2019 Disney Turkey of the Year is…
Docking Bay 7 Tones Down Its Menu Theming
Yes, it’s true that this is really a small detail that’s being blown out of proportion by fans, but hear us out. While it’s never fun to invoke the “slippery slope” argument, it seems fair to worry that this example of “dumbing things down” in what is meant to be a highly-themed project is just the first adjustment in toning down Disney’s ambitions. Then again, if Batuu guests can’t stop stealing sporks, maybe they’re also not quite brave enough to dip into some tip-yip. Regardless, rest assured that if we could think of a clever name for a Star Wars fowl, we’d give this development an award bearing its name. Instead, it will just have to be our Turkey of the Year.
Do you agree with our 2019 Turkey? Let us know what you think should have won!