Comments for Video/Photos: Inside new Haunted Mansion interactive queue at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom


  1. Gordon

    Woohoo! A Gordon and a Frees tribute markers. What more can you ask for?

    1. Ricky Brigante

      You might as well just kick the bucket now… your tombs are already ready for you. 😉

  2. Dear Disneyland,

    Please, plant your corn in Frontierland, not beside The Haunted Mansion. I’m hoping that what happens in Walt Disney World stays in Walt Disney World.


    H. B.
    (In Need of Pants)

  3. Then again, Walt Disney World’s Haunted Mansion does have an Old West theme. Hmmm.

    OK, move all but the book and Imagineer tombstones to Chuck E. CHEESE.

    Yours ghoully,

    H. B.

    1. Walter Sobchak

      Yeah, if the Hudson Valley can be considered “Old West.”

      The outside of the Mansion is 1670s-1700s New York, while the interior is quite 1850s-1890s Victorian. The new tombs seem to fit pretty well into the theme. Just visit Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, where rich industrialists built strange, elaborate tombs for themselves that allows one to sense their personal taste and character. Seeing an Egyptian temple and a gothic cathedral next to each other is quite jarring, but it exists there. The Imagineers did exaggerate on this idea, but this is to be expected from an attraction like the Haunted Mansion and it is very much grounded in the reality of the area the Mansion is supposed to represent.

      1. Steven

        I’m sorry that some of you don’t like the changes to The Liberty Square Haunted Mansion. I liked what I saw. At least Frees gets acknowledged in stone where he didn’t before.

  4. On second thought, lose the book too. It’s too Fantasyland-sounding for a Haunted Mansion. It might be nice inside the Pinocchio ride or the castle.

    Some foolish mortals sure know how to kill an eerie vibe.

    1. Ricky Brigante

      Mr. Ghost,

      It’s clear you’re not happy with these new additions. So I think the best news you can get out of it all is… you can quite easily ignore it! 🙂 Unlike changes ON the ride, this whole new queue area is completely optional. You can walk right past it in the regular queue and barely even notice it’s there. Then those who want to have a little extra fun (such as children who otherwise may have been too scared to ride) can do so while you enjoy your eerie vibe. Everyone wins.

      Now, I’m afraid to find out what you think of the new animated Hitchhiking Ghosts when they’re complete in a few weeks…

  5. If us ghosts can’t scare kids, who can we scare!? And I quote, “Tender lumplings everywhere, life’s NO FUN without a good scare.”

    Son, in case you haven’t heard, it’s a “HAUNTED” mansion.

    1. Ricky Brigante

      And I quote,

      “Happy haunts materialize and begin to vocalize. Grim grinning ghosts come out to socialize.”

      I do believe this new graveyard is filled with happy haunts who are quite eager to socialize. And Jack Skellington hasn’t taken up residence at our Mansion, so your lyric doesn’t apply here. 😉

    2. — not a CHEESE FACTORY!

  6. If they wish to socialize in this manner, then they should go join the MAD TEA PARTY.

    1. Ricky Brigante

      I’m pretty sure there’s already a tea party inside the Mansion…

      …with happy haunts.

      1. Which is precisely why The Haunted Mansion doesn’t need another one outside.

  7. Shelly

    There’s a Pinocchio ride at Walt Disney World?

    1. If there isn’t, there’s a Mickey Mouse walk-through outside The Haunted Mansion.

  8. The tributes to Ken, Paul, Blaine, Rolly, and Harriet are welcome and well done. The rest of this is a disgrace and a mockery. It’s the first time stuff that cannot logically be fit into the world of the HM has been added to the attraction. It effectively denies that that unity exists and/or matters. The fact that you can bypass it is a small mercy, but the damage is still done.

    1. Triggernel

      Let’s hear it for the kids who won’t be as bored in line, making for a more enjoyable time for all. The kids are happier which will keep the families happier and having a better time, and the saps like you don’t have to deal with restless kids. On second thought, why don’t you just skip the ride all together and keep the line shorter for those who appreciate the time the Imagineeers spent on this. Win Win for all!

      Thanks for the Update!

      1. I believe “saps like you” is what is known as a personal attack. You do realize that you make yourself look far worse than you make me look, right?

        1. Ricky Brigante

          Let’s try to keep it civil here, please. I have no problem with the sharing of opinions regarding this update and even a few light-hearted jokes and jabs, but personal attacks are definitely not needed. Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

          1. Tryg

            Saps is a personal attack? More like a laughable jab at someone who I am guessing is older than me.

            Why in the world would someone make a personal attack on someone they have never met on a Diney Fansite?

  9. That Whack-A-Mole knockoff would work better as a bookcase somewhere INSIDE the mansion. Perhaps, the foyer?

  10. Ross

    Funny banter….I really don’t think this was needed….the line always seemed to move fine and I have been going to WDW since it opened. They should spend money fixing all the food and restaurants they ruined with the dining plans.

  11. They should spend the money on restoring THE HATBOX GHOST!

    1. Shelly

      The Hatbox Ghost was never at Walt Disney World.

      1. Duh! But two were built and one installed briefly inside Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion. The intention was for the second figure to be installed at Walt Disney World. But when the illusion proved to be faulty, Imagineers pulled the plug — literally.

        The technology exists today for the illusion to work and it’s a GREAT illusion. Even without the “leaping head” effect, it’s a rich character with A LOT of untapped potential. While Disney has been slow to realize this and has chosen to ignore more than a decade of Haunted Mansion fan outcry (more proof of how out-of-touch the company is), Director Guillermo del Tor hasn’t!

        1. Sorry, I made a typing error. It should be, “Director Guillermo del Toro.”

  12. ALC

    Ricky, Thanks for the great coverage, the new line looks really fun. I was wondering about the Master Gracey tomb – I always thought that Master Gracey could have been a child ghost and maybe this is why the tomb space is so small. I know that doesn’t really follow Haunted Mansion lore but Master is a title you can use for a little boy. Eep!

    1. Shelly

      Exactly. The “Master Gracey” being head of the household was not part of the Bloodmere backstory, but rather the invention of Walt Disney World Cast Members.

  13. OttoT

    I just love the edition. Although I think I rather had a new E ticket ride this is fine.

  14. Haley

    WDI are turning the beloved Mansion into a joke- degrading it to be something that can be ‘marketable’- for common children who are usually afraid of most anything alluding to death any how.

    Sure you can argue, “Simply ignore it!” but the fact of the matter is, this is an official addition to a classic, no matter what you say. Outside leads to INSIDE. What’s next on the horizon, hm? Oh yes– the matter of ‘improving’ the Hitchhiking Ghosts. I feel sick to my stomach even THINKING of what they’ve conjured.

    If they dare to replicate any of this tripe to the original one in Anaheim, I assure you fans, like myself, will NOT tolerate this. They are risking a very loyal fan base who already have to witstand the overly commercialized Haunted Mansion Holiday for a near HALF of the entire year.

    Rest in peace, WDW HM. I’ve always wanted to see you at your prime… but I’m afraid I wasn’t quite able to make it in time.

    Again, I repeat, stay far AWAY from Anaheim.

    1. Ricky Brigante

      You make a good point. It is indeed an official addition and shouldn’t be completely ignored. And I agree that what I’ve seen of the animated Hitchhiking Ghosts so far is less than appealing, but I’ll reserve judgement there until the final effect is revealed in the coming weeks.

      Walt Disney World is quickly updating many of its queues to be more entertaining and interactive. I don’t see that happening at Disneyland – at least not yet.

      I personally am entertained by the new area. It’s not particularly spooky, but it is fun. I would have LOVED it as a kid.

  15. I am a DIE HARD Haunted Mansion fan born in 1971 when WDW opened. I think these additions are fantastic and TOTALLY in line with the Mansion vibe. I was ready to hate them but I LOVE THEM completely.

  16. Ricky, as far as I’m concerned, your coverage is AWESOME. It’s the addition itself that I feel falls far short of the mark.

    Prior to this addition, The Haunted Mansion was a complete and consistent package. Every element flowed smoothly and artistically into the next, like the movements of a symphony — *almost* as the original Imagineers, by design or by accident of their combined brilliance, had created it for the Disneyland, Anaheim attraction.

    This addition is an abomination, a detraction from what once was. It’s noisy, haphazard, incongruent, ill-conceived and ill-placed. Why would there be a bookcase in a cemetery? (If that is supposed to be a wall of niches for cremated remains, it doesn’t look like one.) Why would the manor’s master have two plots? Why does the disembodied female voice of a ghostly entity from beyond write cheesy poetry and sound like a fairytale godmother? (There is no consistency with the quality of the voices or books inside the attraction.) Why is Thurl Ravenscroft commemorated on a bandwagon-shaped crypt that is supposed to also contain a single musician-composer but depicts a number of instruments?

    Shall I go on?

    The Haunted Mansion has always been that mysterious house in the distance with the inescapable lure. Its magic was its subtlety and how its ghostly inhabitants revealed themselves slowly from inside. With this addition, that mystique has been ruined. And one of its most beautiful and captivating outdoor effects, the Madam Leota tombstone, has been upstaged by a combination of loud and cheesy kitsch and schlock.

    As far as I’m concerned, Disney should be ashamed of itself. Art is supposed to raise the perception of the viewer, not sink to the perspective of the lowest common denominator. This *IS* akin to a mustache on the Mona Lisa. It’s sad, sad evidence of how thoughtless, uninformed and truly out-of-touch the current designers and decision makers at Disney really are.

    1. HB Ghost,
      I hear you! I really do – BUT – I have always found the Haunted Mansion (my favorite attraction) very disjointed. I mean – when you come out of the attic, you are coming out of an old Haunted House (not the mansion you just entered) and the graveyard is “inside” when it was just light outside when you entered. There are coffins in the hallways with guys yelling to “get me outta here” – In the HALLWAY? – I mean – come on – the whole thing is NOT a cohesive story. I really think the quality of what is outside is fantastic and has a sense of wonderment. I think it still retains everything I remember as a child.
      I am MUCH more concerned as to what is happening with the hitchhiking ghosts – They better return in same or better form, or I am laying down on the ground and will make the news cast LOL
      Don’t completely be off on it until you see it. Really.

      1. dee

        John – I 100% agree with you. I think some of the hard core fans are taking cannon as gospel instead of understanding that the mansion never really had a cohesive story. I personally love this queue.I am thrilled that the turnstyles are gone, those things were tiny!!! I love that it can be bypassed if you so choose because I know that after a few times it will grow old for me. But I cant wait to see it in person. I love all the tributes to the imagineers and I see some of the effects like the instruments, the bookcases and the captain as a “trailer before the movie” type of thing. Its kind of like, look whats coming!!!

        I am also more concerned about the actual Hitchhiking ghosts, but I am not freaking out yet. Gonna give them the benefits of the doubt because I love this and I LOVED what they did inside so far.

        What makes me laugh is the people who have never seen the Mansion at WDW from Cali are mentally placing this stuff in the cali mansion and not realizing that where this is located was “dead” space. If you all came to florida and got into the mansion queue you would realize this is nothing like Cali’s mansion….this is something I doubt would work to well in the Cali mansion.

        1. John

          I agree Dee

    2. Ricky Brigante

      Thanks for the compliment on the coverage, though it was not needed. I never thought you were putting me or my work down, only the subject matter at hand.

      This interactive queue is a strange beast. Despite the fact that I completely agree with most of you wrote above, I still like it. Technically, most of the new queue area has no business being at the Mansion. But somehow… it works. It’s fun and visually interesting. It’s entertaining and evokes the “spirit” of the Mansion.

      No, it doesn’t work well with the Mansion’s story (well, at least for those who can actually follow the story). No, it doesn’t serve as a proper introduction to the attraction. No, it is definitely not subtle in any way. No, each crypt’s details don’t necessarily make sense. And yet, it works as a whole.

      The Mansion has always been a series of scenes that don’t necessarily connect. You can try to draw a line between them but there are many inconsistent details. It’s also filled with sight and audio gags that are no less silly than what is presented here.

      If ghosts can be having a party on the inside, why can’t their tombs outside be just as wacky?

      1. I don’t agree. The scenes do indeed all connect. There are no inconsistent details. I’ve been studying this thing for years now, and whenever I’ve asked “why” about any show element, an uncontrived, logical, convincing answer has always lain at hand. The examples of alleged incoherence that John S. brings forward (above), for example, are all explicable without special pleading within the world of the HM. I won’t take the space here to try to do it, but I could. It’s what good writers and filmmakers do: envision a believable world and present it in a convincing manner. You don’t have to approach the HM this way, but at WDW now you no longer have an option. This is not like other “enhancements,” this is huge.

        1. Ricky Brigante

          Then explain why this new queue area is any less “believable” than any other scene in the Mansion. Just because you can interact with it instead of watching from afar?

          With the Mansion’s residents having been dead for decades, perhaps the caretaker finally decided it was time to honor a few of them by erecting new crypts. And once that happened, the spirit of the sea captain and poetess thought the crypts were so wonderful that they moved in and are now actively haunting them. The sea captain, after all, used to follow you with his eyes inside, but was evicted from that role in 2007. Now he’s lounging in his brine bathtub.

          Perhaps it is not the same old Mansion story being told here, but instead a sequel of sorts.

          And that’s just one explanation that brings this new area together with the old. I’m sure the Imagineers have their own.

          1. First of all, the Caretaker is not the caretaker of the Mansion. He’s the caretaker of the public cemetery behind the Mansion, so you’ll need to find another crypt builder. Why did the guy who supposedly decided to honor all these residents with new crypts (whoever he was) carve ghosts on them that have not materialized yet? I don’t mean “not yet” in the sense of show sequence, I mean “not yet” in the sense of “they’ve never done that before today; you are about to witness a unique event, their first successful materialization since arriving at the mansion.” Why are there realistic instruments carved on one side of the musician’s crypt, but Museum of the Weird inspired surreal instruments on the other side? And why do those realistic instruments allude to the graveyard band when those guys are from different historical eras and have never materialized to play together until the party that follows Madame L’s séance? And how is it that three hitchhikers, one of them a prisoner with his ball-and-chain, are now family members and residents at this New England mansion?

            The answer to all of this is simple: You’re not supposed to ask such questions. You’re not supposed to expect that kind of logical consistency. But before, you could ask such questions, and if you did you did find consistency. A sensible answer could always be found, based on reasonable inferences from the data supplied and nothing more. It is not so much a matter of “story” or “backstory” as it is about the artistic integrity of the imagined world in which such stories can be told (or not told).

          2. A “sequel” in advance of the attraction itself?

            I believe that’s called a “spoiler.” This addition lives up to that term.

          3. Ricky Brigante

            See, now we are getting into discussion that makes sense! It’s one thing to generally say the new queue area doesn’t fit in with the Mansion’s story. That’s guaranteed to draw criticism from anyone who doesn’t believe the Mansion even has a story.

            But I have been playing the devil’s advocate here. While I do not mind this new addition (as I’ve said elsewhere here, I think it’s fun), I do agree that it does NOT work as an introduction to the Mansion at all. It also makes little to sense with regards to the Mansion’s story (and yes, I believe the Mansion at least has a solid backstory).

            My notion of a “sequel” was rather tongue-in-cheek, just offering one perspective of how this could be explained away in a sentence or two that most guests would say “okay, that makes sense.”

            If you approach the attraction from the view you explained, as if it’s all a first-time occurrence, much like watching the same film over and over, starting the story from the beginning again and again, then having this new graveyard in front of the Mansion makes no sense. It would be better placed AFTER going on the ride – but that wouldn’t make any sense in that it’s supposed to entertain people waiting in line.

            To make a long reply short, this new area succeeds in being entertaining and fun. It does not succeed in making sense in the grand scheme of the Haunted Mansion’s story. But which is more important? The former is to most guests on vacation at a theme park. They expect high quality entertainment that’s fun. They’ll find that in this queue and then again (in a different form) inside the Mansion.

  17. ven

    H. B. Ghost:
    Jack does reside in our mansion in Florida, just in the shape of a book thrown on the bottom of the library floor and in a hat box in the attic. =D

    1. Ross

      Whoa! never noticed that!

      1. ven

        Of course you don’t notice it, it’s super dark! lol This was the only time I took flash because our tour guide let us. Other then that, I hiss at people that take pictures inside mansion.

  18. Scott B

    I dig these changes. It totally seems in line with the vibe of ‘the Mansion’. I think it is successful on all fronts in both keeping with the spirit of the ride and also evolving into this new era of queue interaction. It really shows Disney’s commitment in allowing things to evolve instead of letting them grow stagnant. True this won’t be the same mansion experience you had as a child, but so what? Now children will grow up with something new and they will have their own unique experiences.

    I know some people don’t like this new queue. I get it; we all sometimes hold on to things and hope they never change. But to me, that way of thinking just doesn’t make sense when it involves a theme park.

    1. Ricky Brigante

      While the opinions expressed in the comments above are well thought-out and understandable, it seems quite a few people in various other online discussions on this topic are quickly evolving into “grumpy old men.” You hit it on the head by saying “this won’t be the same mansion experience you had as a child, but so what?”

      Reading some people’s reactions to the interactive queue, I feel like they’re really saying, “When I was your age, we stared at the wall while waiting in line and WE LIKED IT! We didn’t have any of the fancy-schmancy, new-fangled interactive stuff. Fun and entertainment… BAH!”

      1. dee

        Which makes me laugh because these are the same people SCREAMING and CRYING for WDW to bring back ImageWorks upstair above Journey into Imagination. I see this interactive queue as imageworks “super-lite”!!!!

      2. Sean

        I’m 24 years old and hate the new queue, does that make me a grumpy old man?

    2. If you really think that the opposition to this queue is simply a case of “we all sometimes hold on to things and hope they never change,” then you certainly do NOT “get it.” I suggest you actually read some of the more substantive objections before resorting to such condescending platitudes.

      1. Scott B

        Okay, I definitely wasn’t being condescending. It was just an observation on how some people hate change. Hey, I am a huge proponent of Han being the one that shoots first, so I understand it in some situations.

        First lets get this clear, this isn’t exactly comparable to the glass pyramid being added to the entrance of the Louvre. This is a themed queue in a theme park. I would think theme-ing in a theme park would be a given. By your rationale, Disney should also abolish the stroller parking near the entrance and the soda vendors that are just across the way because it doesn’t fit in with the ‘story’.

        All I know is, it seems to be a good fit with the evolution of the park. And when I am in line with my three year old, I am sure she will love the queue. That is all I really care about.

        1. The HM is an imaginary world located in the real world, so all kinds of accommodations are necessary as the price you must pay in order to have such a thing. Hence, ghosts telling you not to pull down on the safety bar, green EXIT lights, and stroller parking out front. That stuff has no relevance to the current discussion, which is about a major addition to the imaginary world. And no one has said that the queue should not be themed, so that’s another straw man argument.

          But as a matter of fact, the HM queue was themed already. Grass, flowers, a big old house, a graveyard on the side. Looks so peaceful, so harmless, and yet it’s all kinda creepy somehow. And did that tombstone face move just now, or was it my imagination? This place is already starting to give me the creeps. Something’s weird and I can’t quite put my finger on it.

          There, that’s Act One. That’s good theming. You’re not supposed to walk into the foyer already overstimulated from overt ghostly activity.

          1. Scott B

            I think this is fodder for a larger discussion (it is an interesting one too!) You bring up good points, you honestly do. I guess it all depends ultimately on what your view of the mansion is and what it isn’t (and since you are posting as the Hat Box Ghost, your view is obvious). Is it simply a themepark ride or is it something more? To me that is a valid question. Surely the ride is iconic. No one is disagreeing with that (at least no one that would visit this site). I guess your point is that as an icon, isn’t Disney responsible to uphold the original vision of the pioneering artists who worked on it? Obviously you think Disney did a poor job doing this. I don’t agree with that view.

            Now if they did something like adding autotuned Bieber vocals to “Grin Grinning Ghosts,” that would make me want to lead an angry mob march through the kingdom with a pitchfork in hand! But this? I think its fine. Personally, I am reserving my final judgment for when I eventually see it in person (since I am a New Englander I can’t exactly run off like Ricky is able to as a local).

            I guess ultimately for me, I have viewed this revamped queue as being an added bonus to entertain the kids in line on a hot Florida afternoon. I haven’t really thought about what it does for the grand illusion of the ride as a whole. And to be perfectly honest, I won’t know how I will feel about it until I standing right in front of it and seeing it in person. But for now, I am fine with it and I think it is a harmless addition.

  19. I LOVE the Haunted Mansion. From my first trip to Disneyland as a kid this has been my favorite ride. I kind of like the interactive queue, as I watched the videos I found myself thinking that I couldn’t wait to experience it for myself. I have never been to WDW but am going for the first time this October and plan on fully seeing the new queue area.
    I do not want to be negative and feel like Disney is ruining things.. no matter the changes to Disneyland and DCA I still have an amazing time every time I go. I would much rather try to enjoy things for what they are instead of letting it put a damper on my day in the park.

  20. ridisneyfan

    Ricky: Thanks again for your wonderful coverage. Wish we were there. One guess: The opposite side of the calliope has relief instruments that are reminiscent of characters from a Nightmare Before Christmas. I wonder if that is a portent to the retheming coming to WDW this year? Hmmmm!!! Discuss!

    1. Ricky Brigante

      I thought the same as well. I don’t think they are intended to look like Nightmare characters, but they just turned out that way simply because of their concept. They’re ordinary objects turned “haunted,” much like they’re “making Christmas” with twisted toys in the film. I highly doubt the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay will come to Florida any time soon (if ever).

  21. Ricky, it *DOESN’T* work as a whole. It’s like staging “The Gong Show” as the opening to “Madam Butterfly”; McDonald’s served at The Last Supper.


    1. Ricky Brigante

      Can I have fries with my Mansion queue?

      But seriously, have you see it in person? The point I was trying to make above is that while it appears on video to be a bizarre variety of things smashed together in the name of interaction, it pulls together as FUN in person. Putting all other thoughts aside, it’s just fun. And that’s all I meant by “it works.”

      I bet if they had unveiled these as interactive games outside the Mansion during a Happy Haunts Ball, fans would have loved them… because they’re fun! You can’t get that sense of fun watching the videos above, reading descriptions, or looking at pictures. Imagineers tried to convey the “fun” aspect with their zany faces and antics in the video above. But it’s not completely clear until you try it yourself.

      1. You’re missing my point, Ricky.

        Fun, interactive games belong in an arcade. Voices that appeal to children and sound like fairy godmothers belong in lands where the attractions are based on fairy tales. They don’t belong where they create a cacophony and eyesore on the beautifully landscaped, stately grounds of a mysterious and foreboding mansion.

        Next, they’ll be adding Madam Leota’s Crystal Ball Bounce and Whack-A-Ghoul.

        As politically incorrect as what I’m about to write may sound, this addition is RETARDED.

    2. I am not opposed to change. I am, however, greatly opposed to ignorance and the lowering of artistic standards.

      1. Larry Mare

        HB Ghost – you sound like an ignorant ranter now and any point you tried to make has been drowned out by your insults and inability to see smothers point of view. I feel sorry for you actually.

        1. Insults? Who did I insult? I did not attack anyone personally. My remarks are aimed at the installation itself and the lack of or ill-conceived thought that went into its creation.

          Sir, you are the one who is insulting me by calling me an “ignorant ranter.” And what makes you think I “don’t see” but, rather, disagree and do so strongly?

          I’ve substantiated my claims and opinions. What have you done but attack me when you had nothing better to say?

          Feel sorry for yourself.

          H. B.

        2. Ricky Brigante

          Again, let’s try to keep this civil please. No insults. Just free-flowing opinions from either side.

  22. ridisneyfan

    Ricky: Whoops! They referred to it as the “Composer Crypt” with all the instruments on the outside. I thought it was a calliope because it played GGG! Sorry.

  23. walkingdisneyfreak

    Wow! I find this new interactive queue to be awesome! You guys can have your opinions but seriously, I think you’re going to have to get used to all of these changes, because they’re going to be adding a lot more “Scene Ones” to the rides. Just a heads up!

  24. I just HAD to copy and paste this here. It’s part of a comment on MiceChat written by member EvilQueen. It reads:

    “What I see in the new Magic Kingdom’s Haunted Mansion queue is a “busybox” of noisy distractions. It certainly is not “enhancing” the queue, as several have reported that one chooses the “fast” (normal) queue, or the “Fun Line” – which diverts you over into the Land O’ Leaking Tombs, Honking Horns, and a cul-de-sac of Chirping Chatty Poem Writers (there’s no mystery here why SHE is deceased…)

    He cast the fly
    to catch a bass;
    but slipped and fell
    right on his ….

    They designed this queue
    as “interactive art”;
    So pull my finger
    and hear me…

    Oh my! Do try and help me to finish my poem!!”

    Thank you,

    H. B.

    1. walkingdisneyfreak

      H.B. Ghost: you can have your own opinion. You have to expect people to disagree with you. I’m not exactly sure what you’re trying to prove… were talking about opinions here, not facts.

      1. Facts should be used to form opinions.

    2. Shelly

      Well, consider the source. MiceChat is the Mikey of Disneydom. They hate everything.

      1. No, I believe that many of the members of MiceChat are objective, more informed and less affected by blind devotion than the members of some other Disney websites and forums.

  25. Sirius214

    Love the coverage! Was there any sign of Madame Leota’s headstone? I have not seen it anywhere in the photos.

  26. Sirius214

    Duh… never mind…
    I somehow missed the sentence answering my question:
    “Madame Leota’s tombstone still resides near the entrance of the Haunted Mansion”

  27. Kevin

    Just to put my 2 cents in, my biggest problem with these additions is that they are artistically cheap. While squirts of water and blasts of air can be fun and amusing, they’re also easy to do and have been done repeatedly by Disney in the past few years. Show me something NEW and unexpected! The placement of Marc Davis’ and Xavier Atencio’s tombstones in the queue is downright lazy. Why are they in teeny tiny planter? How could anyone be buried in that? Yes, I know this is all fantasy, but come on, they could at least try to make it plausible. Put some thought into it, imagineers.

    1. I couldn’t agree more, Kevin. The illusion of realism was part of the mansion’s exterior effect. I know of no actual cemetery where grave markers are placed inside elevated narrow planters and walkway islands.

      The tombstones were created as tributes to the original Imagineers, many of whom have actually passed on. How much respect are they being shown when they are treated as afterthoughts? It really is a disgrace.

  28. What it’s going to succeed in doing is being a slip and fall hazard and source of lawsuits.

  29. Freddyfreak

    Heres what I think: It’s a way to tell the backstory (in a way) to people who don’t study it.

    1. The attraction itself did that perfectly well without the McMansion playground addition. In my opinion, the addition only serves to further confuse — and ruin the once subtle and mysterious ambiance of the attraction’s exterior.

      1. Freddyfreak

        Ok you have a point there. But I have yet to see a picture of the house from rivers of America.

        1. Ricky Brigante

          Now you can. I added a photo near the bottom of the post above showing what the Mansion and surrounding area looks like when standing on the river shore. You can’t see the new queue area at all from there.

  30. Years ago, Disney really cared about innovation and attention to details. With this new crop of Imagineers and the suits they work under, those ethics appear to be gone. They no longer see the bigger picture. And that is a horrible shame.

    1. WDWLocal

      Once again, you’re wrong. Disney still does care about innovation and attention to details! Knock it off!

      1. In my opinion, this “enhancement” demonstrates otherwise. It makes no sense. And what’s so innovative about it?

        A company that cares about details doesn’t put “Finding Nemo” and “Toy Story” in TOMORROWland.

  31. “This leaking crypt
    built for the dead
    is where TDO
    should soak its head!”

    – H. B. Ghost

  32. She’s still there. She’s just barely noticeable now because she’s been upstaged.

  33. Theonlyrideiliked

    Look- if you are a fan, then you will learn that the mansion was made to be funny and not really eerie. You would also know it was going to be ocean themed, so i enjoyed the leaking tombstone. the imagineers did great. I didnt like the talking ghost in the bookshelf thing, but the books look kinda cool… maybe if it moved slower… i like how you can skip this part, but i would like to check it out. it would be creepy at night if you think about it- the stuff spraying mist on you and the gurgling man from the leaking tombstone. i liked the technology of the musical tombstone. and also- wether you want to admit it or not, disneyland is mostly marketed to friends or to family. family means kids. and kids hate lines. i thought this was clever, but they do look a bit cheesy… maybe add some broken tombstones in the backround? add more creepy stuff…

    1. I’ve said it before many, many times and I’ll say it again: It’s no longer Walt’s Disneyland.

      If you’re really a fan of The Haunted Mansion, you would know that the attraction was NOT intended to be funny nor was it intended to be frightening. It’s a combination of many elements and the design ideas of several key Imagineers and Walt himself, all of whom sought a balance, particularly after Walt’s death. (Walt never saw the project finished. At least, not in his earthly form.)

      At the time when the attraction was completed, there remained A LOT of unused concepts. Entire rooms and features were omitted, along with a Museum of the Weird. And the reason that they were left out is because the original Imagineers had the brains and artistic instincts to know that they just didn’t fit or weren’t up to par — notions that appear completely foreign to this current crop of attraction developers. In the past, “kinda cool” would never have been good enough, and it shouldn’t be today.

      As for broken down tombstones and “creepy stuff,” Walt never wanted that for his haunted houses. Just like the rest of his park, he expected The Haunted Mansion and its grounds to be maintained meticulously. The deal he struck with the manor’s resident guests was for Disney mortals to care for the mansion’s outside while the ghosts kept house inside.

      Were Walt alive today, that cheesy hodgepodge would not be there.

      1. Theonlyrideiliked

        Look- you cant please everyone. I know how the outside was supposed to look clean, but the plants themselves seem to weep. I do believe the new que messes up the flow of the haunted mansion- the first half is eerie and environmental- gets you in the mood. the second half is more humorous. The que makes it humorous, then messes it up. If you hate it so much skip it. I believe at this point in time disnry has lost its magic- all this CG crap and taking out CLASSIC rides in disneyland pisses me off. Now i heard there adding a cars section in california adventure- disney really needs to go back and see what made them great. And i see the point of entertaining guests, ect, ect. I just wish they got rid of the book one, made the music one a single tombstone who has the organ keys move slowly every 55 seconds, and turn the captain one into a tasteful fountain that maybe makes a low grown and has an engraved marker. i do think they went overboard, but im trying to be positive-

        1. I’m positive too. I’m positive that I hate it.

          1. Theonlyrideiliked

            did you read what i wrote?

      2. Shelly

        It never was “Walt’s Disneyland”. Walt Disney World is located in Florida, and Walt never set foot in the park.

        And you have no clue as to what Walt would have or wouldn’t have approved of. His wife and daughter couldn’t second-guess him. His closest friends couldn’t second-guess him. People who worked with him their entire careers couldn’t second-guess him. Someone who never met him could?

        1. I’m speaking figuratively, my dear, and all of the Disney Company is Walt’s Disneyland. It was founded on his ideas and dreams. And I most definitely know what Walt would’ve wanted because what I wrote is taken from his own words. And what makes you think I never knew him? You have no idea who I am!

          He and I are both on the same side. ; )

  34. Ricky Brigante

    Leota is still there, but was not shown above as that area of the graveyard was still blocked from guests’ view when I was there. It will be uncovered again soon.

  35. Sje999

    WOW Really I understand the passion for the Mansion and the storyline and all of that but lets not forget the reality here. Its a Theme Park ride. You go you enjoy it. Yes there are some DIE hard fans who follow the storyline and try to make sense of it. But for the Majority of the park patrons its just a ride. You are arguing a moot point Disney isnt going to scrap the interactive Que. So please either enjoy it or dont its up to you but at least give it a try you might like it.

    1. But that is your choice. You have ALWAYS been able to enjoy the HM as simply a very good Theme Park ride, just some fun entertainment, without giving it any further thought. That’s fine. That’s what most people do. Not a problem. But there are also those who appreciate it not only as a great piece of entertainment but as a work of art, because it does everything good art does. It is a coherent, unified, believable, imaginary world, and it repays any amount of attention you want to give to it.

      But now, that mode of appreciation has been rudely shattered. Now, everyone is FORCED to enjoy it the way you describe, because there is no other. They have either denied that the world of the HM is a unified whole, or they have declared that such things don’t matter and can be discarded. Either way, shame on them.

  36. Shelly

    …and if you know anything about the Coats/Davis battles over the Mansion, you know there’s no cohesive story, and you know why.

    1. The storyline developed instinctively. No one had to sit down and write it.

      The difference between the original Imagineers and many from the current crop is that they were more than artists, sculptors and engineers. They were inventors and storytellers. They were recruited from Disney’s film and animation studios. “Story” was second nature to them. It was “organic” and flowed naturally from whatever they did. By what I’ve seen from TDO, especially with this latest installation, the Imagineers there barely know how to develop a character, let alone a story. And they certainly don’t know how to merge either with existing plot and setting. I’m sorry if you don’t like that but it’s true.

      1. Theonlyrideiliked

        It technically wasnt supposed to have a storyline- another reason they scrapped the sea captain story- plus they merged it with the museum of the strange, but i dunno if it changed the mansion at all

    2. We’re not talking about story per se, we’re talking about the imaginary world in which any such stories take place. There’s a difference. That world has always hung together very well, as if it really existed, like when a filmmaker or author imagines and presents a believable but imaginary world. It follows its own rules, you might say. So did the HM, until now.

  37. Melissa

    I’d hardly consider myself a never-change-anything person; the new queue at the Pooh ride is nothing short of perfect. And I’ve only ridden the HM’s a few times. And even I think this is silly, pointless, and distracting, for the same reasons the Hatbox Ghost outlines above. Moreover – why spend all this money on something that everybody was already enjoying, when there are so many things that actually need attention, like the broken Yeti in Expedition Everest? If it ain’t broke, spend the money on something that is!

    (Am I correct in assuming that you can bypass this new mess if you want to, and stay in the regular queue?)

  38. Gordon

    Well I respect Ricky’s passion for the Haunted Mansion and if he says it’s fun… well then I need to at least reserve judgment until I see it in person (December!).

    Most guests don’t give a whoop about any back-story, they just want to be entertained — and this new feature is aimed at them. We (die-hard fans of the Haunted Mansion) may not like certain (or all?) aspects of the new queue, but I suspect that WDI doesn’t care about us (but rest assured that marketing will be more than happy to wrestle some premium dollars from us). It’s a sad reality.

    That said, I do think they could have toned down a few things and struck a balance between entertaining guests and remaining true to the history of the Haunted Mansion.

  39. J-man

    Thanks for the walk through preview – I missed this by a month or so from last time I was there, and won’t be back until May/June.

    One thing you briefly mentioned has my attention: you said the queue splits where the turnstyles used to be. So, can you confirm: Have the 1970-vintage skeleton-width turnstyles finally been removed??!! I think I remember HM and the train station being the last remaining examples of these horrible contraptions still left over from the A-E-ticket days, after Pirates removed theirs some years ago. It would be wonderful news to know the ones at Haunted Mansion were finally dead-and-buried.

    1. Ricky Brigante

      Tiny turnstiles are gone. The attraction is becoming as wheelchair-accessible as possible.

    2. dee

      Dont forget those horrid ones at Country Bear Jamboree….seriously glad to hear those things are outta the Mansion Queue.

  40. I’ve updated my queue poem:

    This leaking crypt
    built for the dead
    is where TDO
    should soak its head!

    These grounds are not
    Why can’t you mortals

  41. dee

    Hey Ricky,

    Posted a couple responses above to other people but I just wanted to say, awesome job on the coverage. I think you mighve been the first to post, even laughingplace linked to your covered.

    I think the queue reminds me of a trailer for the attraction. Esp. after the video posted by disney came out. I love it and I cant wait to see it in person. I wonder, if your standing out in front of the mansion, out in liberty square to take pix of the mansion as a whole, can you even see this queue or do you pretty much have to get deep into the queue to really see it.

    I mean there is lots of complaining about it ruining the landscape but if I have my placement right, I cant see how this is visible until your close to the doors.

    1. Ricky Brigante

      Thanks for the compliments. And you bring up some great points. You cannot see this new area of the queue until you are either deep inside the queue, nearing the entrance doors, or you’re on the riverboat. It’s completely unseen from standing in front of the Mansion or even along the shore of the river. It does not ruin any landscape and occupies an area of land that was previously unused.

      AND… you can’t really hear the music or sounds from the regular queue. It’s tucked away far enough where if you don’t make the decision to enter this new area, you’ll barely even realize it’s there.

  42. Simon Pearson

    Superb Ricky its getting to the point now, where i no longer need to visit Orlando. I just need to visit your website. Superb keep it coming

    1. Ricky Brigante

      Ha! I don’t know about that. 🙂 This site is supposed to make you want to visit Orlando more than ever. Nothing beats experiencing it all in person. Videos, photos, and articles can only go so far…

      1. Scott B

        I agree with Ricky on this, the site always makes we want to head back down to Orlando. Except during the summer. Orlando during the summer is amazing, you can walk outside and instantly be drenched in sweat. Yeesh, no thanks.

  43. John Lay

    I cannot wait to see it in person. Thanks for sharing.

  44. Grinning Ghost

    I don’t need to visit it to know it does not belong in the queue area at all. I actually *like* all of it except the poetess and the Sea Captain. The whole thing should really have been at the end where the other crypts are. It makes much more sense there. It contributes nothing whatsoever to the attraction inside. It merely presents noisy spoilers of some of what lies ahead, and ruins the flow of build-up to the rousing jamboree at the end. Something much more subdued and subtle would have been appropriate in the queue. The writing book would work, but without the voice. It should have been used to give subtle hints as to what’s in store. THAT would have worked in the queue. The Sea Captain’s tomb is really tacky. It looks like it should have been in the queue for 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea.

    It should never have been installed in the queue just to entertain little children. Personally, I don’t think it would be appropriate to take a child under 6 through the Haunted Mansion to begin with, and so the entertainment for the young children wouldn’t ever be necessary. Most tend to freak out in the stretch rooms and – once upon a time – were truly frightened by the “pop-and-boo” attic and the creepy, noisy Corridor of Doors. I have chatted with an adult who, as a young child of about four or five, was traumatized by the original attic, and is still frightened of seeing it today in videos. Of course, it’s up to parents to decide what is an appropriate age for The Haunted Mansion.

    It’s just wrong for the queue. Period. But I still want to go in there and play, even if it is in the wrong place.

    1. Theonlyrideiliked

      you do know the sea captain was the first haunted mansion character though of? befor the stretching room, it used to be a melting captain, but the effect took to long to set up and use… look at the weather vein on the original mansion- its a ship…

      1. Grinning Ghost

        Yes, I am well aware that the Sea Captain was one of the first illusions developed for the Mansion when it was to be a walk-through attraction. It was scrapped when it became a ride-through because it took too long to accomplish from start to finish.

        Had they re-created that original illusion for the new queue, I would have been fine with it. This crypt of a the Captain drowning in a bathtub is just tacky and a very undignified representation of Captain Blood (his original name). It should have been more like the statue of the fisherman in Gloucester, Mass. It could have been more static like the Leota tombstone, with some more subtle effect associated with it. Perhaps by changing poses on an irregular schedule, or speaking to guests in hushed, haunting tones. Something of that nature.

        1. Theonlyrideiliked

          yah- that sounds epic

    2. Sean

      I went on the Haunted Mansion around the age of 4 and it has become my favorite attraction of all time. Getting scared on Haunted Mansion is part of the experience growing up. I encourage families to get their children on attractions like HM and Pirates, the earlier the better. These are the moments that children cherish for the rest of their lives because once they are grown up, attractions lose their realism.

      1. I find that attractions lose their realism is when they are diminished by additions that don’t belong.

  45. I can’t understand an argument that amount to, “Little kids like it, where they didn’t before.” Besides the fact that I don’t believe that for a minute, if that is the criterion, then changes that would make the ride enjoyable for a two-year old would be good ideas. Hey, let’s expand the ride’s appeal toward earlier and earlier age groups.

    The other argument I don’t understand amounts to, “This is a beautiful, wonderful, classic ride, and if the Imagineers don’t change it, it will be stale, boring, and worthless.”

    1. Grinning Ghost

      I don’t understand that last bit either. TDO already addressed the “stale, boring, and worthless” parts of the attraction in the 2007 refurb, and made it nearly perfect.* Why do they keep on tinkering with it by ruining the carefully crafted atmosphere outside that worked perfectly as it was (once they deleted the turnstiles)?

      *I say nearly perfect because I can’t stand the Chatty Connie attic with too much storyline to take in and a very noticeably flat projection. The original attic was great just as it was. I will reconsider my opinion if they ever fix Constance with a proper projection on a properly shaped bust and a shot of the right personality. Right now she’s just a flat soccer mom in a wedding dress. Great idea, lousy execution; and drop the unnecessary storyline.

  46. wazomike

    I really like the way everything looks! The only thing I feel would be slightly boring and that I don’t really care for is the whole helping Prudence write poetry. Other than that I can’t wait to get out there and see it!

  47. Walt Disney wanted his mansions’ grounds to remain pristine and give little-to-no hint as to what’s in store for approaching guests. In 1962, seven years before the first Haunted Mansion attraction opened, Walt stated plainly, “We’ll take care of the outside, and THE GHOSTS will take care of THE INSIDE.”

    It couldn’t be any more clear.

    This hideous McMansionland playground is a spoiler that ruins EVERYTHING. Were I in charge at Disney, not only would I take it out, I’d rethink the qualifications of the very foolish mortal who concocted it.

    1. Frank

      HB – I hope you learn to relax into these wonderful additions. I doubt they are going to remove it for you no matter how many countless times you repeat yourself. I am suspecting your not liking it LOL

      1. I hope that you learn the difference between quantity and quality, but not as much as I hope that Peter Carsillo does.

    2. Theonlyrideiliked

      I think walt meant he wanted the park to look nice and fresh- i do believe that theys are a little to big of spoilers- btw i miss the old ring in walt disney world- why did they take it out? it was that imprint of the wedding ring in the side walk from the attic bride—

  48. joshdarkensins

    first of all i never thought haunted mansion needed this. there are other rides that are way busier and need an interactive que.. there are several things that bother me. first thing the tomb stones that are situated in the line divider thing, it doesnt make any sense there would be no room for the body under the ground … dumb complaint i know but it will bother me every time i weight in the line. another thing that bugs me is the lack of cohesiveness, nothing really matches some of the additions are too cartoony and kidish looking. the last thing that really really bugs me is some of the interactive element which just seem tacky and pointless, particularly the moving books on the side of the crypt and the dumb ANNOYING woman who needs you to shout out a rhyme or whatever. one thing i really do like is the new graveyard on the hill side that looks really great and spooky…. i really hope this area changes a little bit a dont necessarily think the interactive que is a bad thing but it could definitely be improved and could be more cohesive, stimulating and detailed. hope it changes.

  49. Gordon

    In listening to Prudence Pock’s poetry on podcast 311, I felt like I was playing the Match Game…

    “Herb had relaxed in his jungle cabana, but a big monkey fought him off with a ____________.”

    1. Ricky Brigante

      I thought the exact same thing. I hope they give her a “Dumb Dora” poem.

  50. Rachel

    I was excited to see this addition after you posted it. I got a chance to visit last week and I really enjoyed it. I know there are several “back stories” to the mansion, and that there is no one unifying story or theme, and I’ve always enjoyed that it was a series of scenes. This is just another scene, one that is a little lighthearted.

    It’s fun, and though it’s not artistically genius, I think Walt would have enjoyed the interaction. Also, the ride itself is not scary–but many children are HORRIFIED. Crying in line and not wanting to go on. I went with my uncle who has downs syndrome (so yes h.b., that was a horrific choice of words), and the darkness and stretching room really freak him out, and he doesn’t want to go on, we have to coax him and then afterwards he says how he loves it. The new addition was fun, and took his mind off of the idea of it being “scary”.

    I had a hard time picturing the addition in my head until actually walking through it, then to me it made more sense. Overall I enjoy the addition. The Mansion is still The Mansion. It doesn’t “damage it”.

  51. futuremousemember

    i like many of the ideas added but i see major problems with the story line. Walt wanted his manson to be prestem on the outside and infested with ghosts. if grim grining ghosts lightly plays when you touch the orgain thats cool, if you hear gargiling and sea songs from the captins cript thats even berter with bublles. but when you are wrighting poems with a ghostly poet i think your pushing it.
    all in all i enjoyed most of the new additions. :/

  52. futuremousemember

    i like many of the ideas added but i see major problems with the story line. Walt wanted his Manson to be well Kemp on the outside and infested with ghosts. if grim grinning ghosts lightly plays when you touch the organ that’s cool, if you hear gargling and sea songs from the captains crypt that’s even better with bubbles. but when you are writing poems with a ghostly poet or solving a family murder i think your pushing it.
    also fix Gracy’s burial sight its just not right without a rose!
    all in all i enjoyed most of the new additions. :/

  53. Brett

    I found the new changes quite enjoyable, as I always do, but this time it was not only fun but helpful too! My little cousin, who loves the haunted mansion to death like I do, was so excited to go on his favorite ride. But when we all got there, it was a 45 minute wait, which made him really upset. I didn’t even know about the new queue, so I told him we’d play a game and count all the tombstones we see- of course, Disney has other plans. When the line moved within the grounds of the ride, i gasped a little at all the changes- as well as my cousin. Instead of hearing him complain about the wait all day, he was actually enjoying himself!! I also loved the ride, considering I didn’t have to hear a 5 year old scream for a half-hour, and it was fun trying to solve the murder mystery. We definetely both loved the sea captian crypt, where we tricked my parents into standing by the tomb just before he let out a sneeze, claiming we were gonna get a picture. We got a good laugh out of that, as well as watching my cousin try to convince us the tombstone of Madame Leota moved, which no one saw but him (and I admit me too). Disney, good job on this you turned a 45 minute wait to 45 minutes of fun!

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