Disney Headlines for September 21st, 2021
Did you hear the one about the VIP Tour with no VIPs on it? How about the friend of the Muppets who looks eerily similar to Madame Leota?
For that matter, when’s the last time you watched a good Disney TikTok? It’s been a fun week for Disney Headlines.
The Not-VIP Tour
Have you ever taken a VIP Tour at Walt Disney World or at least noticed the Plaids who host these events?
These special cast members carry iPads that perform hidden tasks. When someone pays for a VIP Tour, Disney wants to take care of them.
As such, the Plaids must cater to the guest’s every need. Those iPads unlock the access that the cast members require to do their jobs.
Well, somebody figured this out…somebody named Tony. Apparently, you can find a black market in Orlando these days.
A mysterious individual named Tony is either stealing iPads or buying them without Disney’s consent.
In doing so, Tony gains those same powers as Disney’s VIP Tour hosts and hostesses.
A Disney investigator broke this story when he noticed a non-Disney employee carrying around one of these iPads.
You can spot them from a distance and easily distinguish them from regular iPads. So, you can imagine the Disney worker’s surprise.
A brazen thief wasn’t just carrying around Disney property! This person had brought a group of guests into the park and was using the iPad for them!
Specifically, the nefarious person masquerading as a cast member provided Lightning Lane access to his traveling party.
The Disney worker ordered the ride operators to cancel that access. Then, an interrogation started.
The iPad holder claimed that he worked for “A Class,” which is apparently the name of the (fake) company. He added that Tony had given him the iPad.
We’ve talked about stupid criminals at Disney several times. This guy wasn’t that. He sure was the most overconfident criminal in recent memory, though.
Poor Tony is also in trouble for trespassing on Disney property. Disney reclaimed its iPad, too. It was a total loss for A Class.
Chapek at the White House
Bob Chapek has (mostly) enjoyed an exciting first 18 months on the job as CEO of The Walt Disney Company.
I once described him as the unluckiest CEO ever, but he has weathered the maelstrom of bad luck.
Now, Chapek stands at the top of the Disney food chain and has even hired his own team of loyal executives to shape the company’s future.
Recently, Chapek garnered national headlines for a COVID-related vaccination.
The CEO chose to require vaccinations for almost all Disney employees. He even worked a deal with several unions to increase the number of vaccinated workers.
Most business analysts hailed this decision as the kind of leadership that companies like Disney need to succeed during these trying times.
Other companies like Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Fox News, and Walgreens followed suit. However, not all businesses have chosen this place.
For this reason, Joe Biden, the American President, requested that Chapek and his counterparts at Microsoft and Walgreens meet at the White House.
The administration wanted to discuss the best methodology for implementing these new COVID-19 policies.
He also wanted to pick Chapek’s brain for ideas on the best ways to persuade other companies to embrace this policy.
Chapek earned a ton of media attention for his meeting. But, more importantly, he rebuilt the bridge that his predecessor, Bob Iger, had burned on the Beltway.
Between this and Chapek’s decision to support Gavin Newsom’s (successful) bid to remain Governor of California, he has shown he has political chops, too.
This criticism had worked against Chapek during his candidacy to become CEO. So, it’s impressive to watch him embrace this part of the job.
Simultaneously, Chapek is keeping Disney workers and guests safe during what we all hope is the final phase of the pandemic.
The TikTok Update
If you don’t use TikTok, you missed some fun stuff this past week. For starters, a user recorded a video of a dude breaking the rules at Cinderella Castle.
Yeah, he is NOT supposed to be there. That dude is likely facing a park ban and a trespassing charge.
On the opposite end of the morality spectrum, here’s a TikTok of a little boy showing the proper respect to Disney Princesses:
That kid is my hero. I also tip my cap to the two Disney Princesses who, without missing a beat, curtsied in response to the gentleman.
By the way, 34.2 million people have watched that TikTok. So that kid’s gonna wind up an influencer by this time next year.
Speaking of TikTok influencers, everythingdisney133 has scooped up likes this past week for some controversial videos.
When I say controversial, I mean that people watch the TikToks and then think, “No, I didn’t like that!”
Specifically, this account shows quick clips of Disney rides with the lights on. Here’s Pirates of the Caribbean:
You can’t unsee that, can you? The one for Peter Pan’s Flight is much worse:
Finally, here’s the weirdest viral TikTok of the week:
Yes, that person actually accuses Disney of brainwashing guests. However, what he’s saying has some truth to it.
I’ve mentioned that Disney employs Smellitzers, which you can actually buy for home use. They’re called Sense HDs.
I literally have an unopened one sitting in a box right now, and I guess I’ll have to do a review of it now.
Anyway, Disney does manipulate your senses a bit by sprinkling the air with fragrant smells.
Still, that’s not brainwashing. Instead, that’s a way to make your trip more pleasant. Otherwise, you might smell the bathrooms and Florida swamp.
Kim Irvine Appreciation Thread
Let’s end the post with a bit of happy news about one of the most significant Disney people ever, Kim
Disney just revealed that beloved Imagineer Kim Irvine will appear in the upcoming Muppets Halloween special.
As a reminder, this one-off Halloween episode will marry two Disney IPs, the Muppets and Haunted Mansion.
Disney fans know why Irvine will show up in this story. Her mother, Leota Toombs, portrayed Madame Leota in the ride.
Since her mother’s death, Irvine has taken over the role as the modern Madame Leota, which is fitting since she’s the spitting image of her mother.
By the way, that’s not even the only significant bit of casting news. Disney also confirmed that the late Ed Asner will appear on this special as well!
Life’s kinda imitating art here.
Feature Image: CNBC