Ever since the official announcement that Phineas and Ferb were taking over Kim Possible’s World Showcase Adventure, I’ve been thinking that maybe the Phineas and Ferb meet and greet in Hollywood Studios should pack its bags and move to Epcot as well. I’m not being mean. I promise. But it is Muppets territory (see: Muppet Studios) and it would be awesome if they could acquire some of their own space back for something better. Like what? Well, the gears in my head have been spinning and here are a few of the ideas I’ve come up with.
1. A meet and greet. Whoa. That’s pretty mind-blowing, don’t you think? I would love to see crowds lining up to meet Piggy and Kermit, and maybe even Walter, since he seems to be everywhere these days. (As he should be!) Autographs, a merchandise cart, the works! I, for one, am not a fan of the HUGE Muppet characters (kind of like my confusion for the big Sesame Street characters at Sesame Place) because doesn’t that mess with a kid’s perception of these characters? That’s just me. But I’ll take what I can get. (Can you imagine a GIANT Walter? So cute!)
2. I’m still thinking of the Phineas and Ferb Meet and Greet space, but a show featuring an Electric Mayhem concert and some kind of big drama would be great. (Animal goes missing? The electricity went out?) The only issue I have with this is that its an outside space, and weather could affect whether (ha) it goes on or not. I love the space in Animal Kingdom for Flights of Wonder, but I’m not sure if something that size would be too much for the back of the Muppet space. I just think the Electric Mayhem is a group that everyone can enjoy together and it might be a nice way for the parents to be able to sit down and relax for a few. They could even sell fun drinks! Cocktails anyone?
3. I like to think of Walter as this bridge, a link between the newer and older Muppet fan. I’m imagining a tour of Walter’s Muppet collection, a deeper look into his inner geek. A fun way to experience some of the older Muppet show moments? Walter’s own Stacey-esque Top Muppet Moments? (How adorable and hilarious would that be?!) As far as placement, I’m not sure where something like this could go. Too bad Sounds Dangerous is too far away from MuppetVision 3D because I could see it somewhere like that.
4. When I was rewatching The Muppets last weekend, I realized how much Gonzo’s plumbing business (Gonzo’s Royal Flush) looked like the Pizza Planet building in DHS. It’s uncanny actually. If you think about it, Pizza Planet is a little out of place. (Especially now that Toy Story Midway Mania exists.) And ever since they took away the Woody and Buzz figures on top, it lost some of its appeal. (Is it sad I liked to see the guys up there more than the pizza?) Back in the day, Mama Melroses’ space was set to become Gonzo’s Pizza Parlor but after the initial acquisition deal with the Muppets fell through, so did a lot of the plans. The original idea was to have Swedish Chef cooking the food… which is cute! But my thought is to switch out Pizza Planet for another counter service featuring Gonzo and the chickens and the plumbing business somehow. Maybe a montage of Gonzo the Great’s best moments playing inside?
5. I love Mama Melrose’s. It’s one of my favorite restaurants on property and I find it truly baffling when I hear on podcasts or other blogs that it’s “not talked about much.” WHAT?! I feel like I’ve been going there since my first couple of trips to WDW. (They have the absolute BEST penne ala vodka and that’s coming from a girl who lives in Long Island with plenty of amazing Italian restaurants.) Anyway… this is just a small change but a lot of the celebrity photos hanging up inside are pretty dated. Why not switch a few out for some of the Muppets. I love the decor and the feel of the whole place so this isn’t a huge thing. But it would be nice to see the Muppets show up in there somehow.
6. Another easy fix. Sell more Muppet stuff in the Stage One Store (or the “Muppet Store” as I call it). Another shocking idea, right? Now that the Muppets are selling at Build-a-Bear workshop and considering the existence of the Muppet Whatnots Workshop at FAO Schwartz, I think it would be really smart for Disney to include this in DHS as well. If you have some sort of version of one of these in a bigger shop, that could also mean more shopping by guests while they are waiting for their Muppet or whichever. Plus, it’s pretty much the perfect Disney Parks souvenir. You have the experience of making something one-of-a-kind on your trip and you get to take it home with you.
With the Muppets, I truly believe the possibilities are endless. There’s a way to give a nod to the old-school Muppet fans and sort of reel new ones in. And DHS could really use some love. As much as it is a park I enjoy, it is in desperate need of an upgrade when it comes to a few spots. With the success of The Muppets (and announcement of a sequel), I think revamping the space around MuppetVision 3D is the perfect place to start.