Saturday, September 30, 2006
Where's Spaceship Earth?
It's a topic that's already been discussed here and, with some lovely visuals, at Re-Imagineering. Nonetheless, after this last trip to Epcot, it can't be repeated enough: Epcot's central plaza has become a overcluttered, carnival-style eyesore.
Look above at the way EPCOT Center was designed. If you're wondering where this image is taken from, it took me a while to recognize it as well. That large gray structure under Spaceship Earth in the 1982 postcard is the exit area of the attraction. To the left is Communicore East (now Innoventions East).
The peaceful, almost serene calm of the scene underscores the idea that our world of the future can be orderly, calm and quite lovely -- that technology can bring us some peace from the chaos. The future promises a well-ordered, but not stark, world unlike the noisy one in which we live.
The redesigned Future World (below) says exactly the opposite: We need fun! We need noise! We need to be busy and chaotic! (Heck, on my last trip, I even saw -- I'm not making this up -- a cast member throw a large ball directly at guests trying to "engage" them.)
And missing in the redesign? Well, where, exactly is Spaceship Earth? Oh, there it is, behind the clutter, behind the "festivity," behind the madness. It's not looming majestically over everything -- it's hidden. I'm beginning to think Disney might be ashamed of it ... ?