Mb Images Upload 04-Sparrow In Hiding-WebWhile the world worries about the Reds’ Rocket Dare, and what really killed Ken Lay, there is really only one topic keeping us up at night us here at Stately Beat Manor: what is the revamped PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN ride like? One Seth Kubersky over at Jim Hill Media has sampled the always inferior WDW version of the ride and has an encouraging report, accompanied by stills that seem to indicate that pirates are allowed to engage in rapine again — at least with dressmaker’s dummies.

Just past them is the 1st Jack Sparrow AA, and he’s truly a work of art. Unlike Ellen, Bogie, or just about every other celebrity AA, this isn’t some fugly Halloween-mask approximation. It is Johnny Depp in the flesh, down to the last fleck of eyeliner. Taken from a life-mask, and built with obvious care, it’s a dead ringer standing still, and eerily accurate in motion. Hiding behind some dress forms, Jack leans and cranes his neck in a way that is not merely lifelike, but that captures the quirky essence of Depp’s performance. I was initially wary when I heard they were doing a “realistic” AA, as opposed to a stylized caricature in the classic Marc Davis style. But when you think of it, the POTC films feature attractive leads surrounded by a grotesque, almost cartoonish cast of characters – much as the rides now do. Whatever qualms I might have had, now that I have seen it first-hand I can only applaud the decision to add Captain Jack.

Smashing news! As the world swelters beneath imminent heat death, we can only rejoice that the most wonderful place on earth will go down swinging.


  1. I must defend my east coast brethren…..I challenge why Disney *World’s* version of Pirates is so “inferior” as you claim?

  2. Have to credit Dan Goldman for recommending it to me, but especially any WDW fan or anyone who’s even ever been should check out boingboinger Cory Doctorow’s first novel, Down and Out in The Magic Kingdom…. just essential supersmart sf….any more spoilers would spoil it…