Sunday, July 29, 2012

Monorail wrappings - why aren't there more?

Walt Disney World only has a brief history of "wrapping" monorails: once for the second Tron movie, and once for the Avengers. Both were promotional concepts, and both came from the Walt Disney Studios (and probably came as a command to the park operations people, not a request). 

Reaction to the monorail wrappings online is mixed. But I was surprised to read one worker report online that people want so badly to get that perfect picture of a wrapped monorail that they sometimes interfere with the tight scheduling they need to keep on these transportation systems. That got me thinking. At least a portion of the regular visiting population (not necessarily the same crowd as those who post online) obviously really likes the wrapped monorails.

If true, that has me wondering why the Park operations folks, or the Imagineers, haven't jumped on the idea. Instead of Avengers and Tron, why not make the monorails something uniquely Disney, something that bespeaks the Disney brand?

It might look really wild to have the Seven Dwarfs represented by a monorail each. People wouldn't talk about Monorail Red any more (because apart from us nerds, who does now?) - but they will talk about the Dopey Monorail, wouldn't they?

Disney has taken a baby step here in this direction in Anaheim, where the monorails took on a "Cars" look/feel with eyes, partly to celebrate the opening of Carsland at DCA. But with Pixar moving from the Cars movies to Planes movies (set in the same universe) in the near future, I could see WDW using those eyes on their monorails, too.

Do you agree? Would it look good or bad? Less classy?

Kevin Yee is the author of numerous independent Disney books, including the popular Walt Disney World Earbook series and Walt Disney World Hidden History.