Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Universal Horror Make-Up Show at Orlando, and then some


Another little stage event for me this past weekend was the Universal Horror Make-Up Show at the Pantages Theater replica at Universal Studios in Orlando, basic link here. Universal's own link is here

Let me make a note about the pricing.  Parking at Universal was $22 and covered, whereas at Disney it is $17 and outdoors.  The admission prices are about the same.  A multi-park at either company for a singleton is about $155 (a single park ticket is about $95).  Both offer express-line passes for as much as $100 extra a day (is that for a whole family?), which, while completely legal, I think sends a bad message to kids (that you can morally buy yourself out of the inconvenience others face).  You don't need them.  The longest line I faced was about 20 minutes (at Shrek) without the pass. 

I'll also note that it may sound absurd to visit Orlando in July.  The humidity and heat are OK if you can get into the shade; there is usually a breeze.  Thunderstorms in the afternoon are frequent and unpredictable, but provide quick relief.  I have some hip arthritis, which actually goes away in heat (probably because of low barometric pressure). 

I went to this particular show on late Friday afternoon.  The show lasts about 25 minutes.  The most remarkable event is the slicing off of a woman’s arm.  The woman is chosen from the audience, but I believe was pre-selected. 
  

It may giving away too much of the magic to explain “the prestige”, but knives can be fake and can fold, and secret pockets of red ink (like that of an octopus) can exist.

I had actually visited the original Universal (in LA) in  December, 1969 on a job interview trip (for Rand) just before getting out of the Army, and actually acted in a mock “Day in Court”.
  

I’ll mention also Diagon Alley, where there was a vaudeville group in the town square.  The Hogwarts Express train shows, as a film on the indoor windows, both Modern London and then scenes from Harry Potter’s countryside.  Hogwarts Castle and ride is at Islands of Adventure, which otherwise is nothing special (rather like a Busch Gardens).  But the Universal Studios park is quite interesting, as is Disney's Epcot (the Magic Kingdom shows its age, and the Tomorrowland area looks dated and passe, if retro).  I didn't get to Downtown Disney or Disney Hollywood, but  the Disney Hollywood looks interesting and would be similar in spirit to Universal's (it looks a little smaller on the map).  

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