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I was a week behind schedule, but I FINALLY made it a priority to get over to Disneyland last night to see the re-release of Captain EO!  No, when I say I made it a priority, I mean that in all sincerity.  I worked extremely early in the morning which wasn’t much fun, but luckily it allotted me time to head home and shower then run off to the park …and I mean run.  As it is the off-season, it’s not open terribly late on weeknights.  I literally power walked through Downtown Disney from where I was parked and charged straight through the gates to Tomorrowland.

Once I finished skipping through the entrance, hopping up and down from excitement and received my 3D glasses I got a little wary because I then smacked into a rather massive group of people and I wanted my viewing to be perfect.  Then I reminded myself of a couple of things:  First, there really isn’t such a thing as a “bad seat” in a 3D film, the floating meteor is going to hover in front of you no matter where you are in the room …that’s kinda one of the beauties of it. Second, and far more importantly, I was MOVED to see this many people gathered around to celebrate EO’s return (not waiting for Space Mountain, they were there for the experience of the film), on a Tuesday evening… I am willing to bet Honey, I Shrunk The Audience! NEVER saw that kind of buzz …not in the last decade anyway.  It was the most people I’ve even seen stood in front of the doors before, ever.

I know a lot of it is the novelty of “Oh, Michael’s dead …let’s go soak up the pop culture of that!”  I’m sure that’s part of it.  However, as the sign says “Tribute” under it, which annoys me to no end (Disney yanked him from the parks after the huge public scandals and speculation and had NO plans of bringing him back …and then this opportunity pops up to capitalize ….of course they’re going to do it! …tribute my ass).  It IS a tribute in the sense that it really was Michael at his absolute best (1986, heck yeah).  He was still a shade of brown and his face was still handsome with obvious “enhancements” but nothing freaky …in fact it reminded me he was once a handsome fella …in a fabulous glam rock sort of way.  He was in perfect form vocally and physically …it moved me a great deal to sit down next to what looked like a 3 year old girl and see her enjoy it and know that a new generation gets to grow up being exposed to what was loved and appreciated about him …not the sad, strange, isolated man that was a bizarre product of his upbringing and environment but his gifts and contributions to entertainment.

It would have made him feel so good to see an entire room grab for floating objects for the fun of the effect, cheer at his dramatic entrance of rising up into the shot, to sing along and bob to the music (okay, so some of the bobbing was the automated chairs…but I was sure as heck dancing in my seat),flip out when he moon walked …you get the idea.  People there were really enjoying themselves and celebrating.  It was a fantastic energy from the crowd.  Personally, I couldn’t stop grinning the entire 17 minutes.  I would just keep giggling because it was just like I remember it, thank goodness!  It would have made him feel really good to see that he could still bring that to people.

If you’re feeling nostalgic, I came across an okay copy of the original film.  As you well imagine, it’s NOTHING compared to going and seeing it with restored sound and accompanied with all the appropriate seats movements and laser light fixtures to embellish the experience.  Not the mention they painstakingly retained the original footage in its original film format …some might complain that today’s technology wasn’t utilized to make the production, or at least the 3D effects snazzier …but it’s perfect the way it is and it would have looked weird and out of place any other way.  If you are hankering for some EO and are POSITIVE you aren’t going to be able to make it to the park, HERE YA GO …but it’s not going to be the same.  Make a real effort to come check it out the way it’s meant to be seen.  It’s a really good time.  I’m going to take it in as many times as I can before Disney goes “Oh, we’re not turning much of a profit off it anymore, tribute over.”

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