Mission to Mars. It’s the show that nobody wanted. Even Disney. I go into the history of the attraction in almost too much detail on Episode 31 of the RetroWDW podcast, so check that out if you want a deep dive into the attraction.
The Tropical Serenade (a.k.a. The Enchanted Tiki Birds) was a “must-see” during my family’s yearly visits to Walt Disney World in the 1970s. It was my niece (who was a year older than me) who insisted that this be the first attraction we always experienced (I went for the Jungle Cruise as our second). As the years went by, I appreciated the attraction more and more. By the early 1990s, I stumbled across Martin Denny reissue CDs, fell in love with exotica music, and my path ...
Fantasyland at Walt Disney World stayed fairly untouched though the mid-1990s, with attractions receiving modest upgrades for capacity but being otherwise left in their original state. Of course, this all changed with the closure of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and eventually Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. But while it existed, it was a wonderful place full of passing aerial trams, flying elephants, and dolls singing about world understanding.
Test Track may be thrilling, but the attraction which preceded it, World of Motion, was the unadulterated spirit of Disney through and through. Although solely attributed to Ward Kimball, the attraction contains many humorous scenes designed by Marc Davis using his trademark style of show scenes punctuated by audioanimatronic figures making subtle movements. It’s the robotic equivalent of today’s Cinemagraph photography.