To celebrate the release of the Park 9 Series Phantom Manor Ghost, I thought since many International readers from the US (and anywhere else) haven’t been on the Phantom ride, I’d give a brief background on this ride and character. And since the Haunted Mansion has its own series (coming soon), the Phantom is a lovely addition to Park 9 since it wouldn’t have fitted the Mansion series.
First and foremost, the Phantom Manor isn’t exactly the same as those located in Walt Disney World or Disneyland as it’s a much darker ride and a little more scary since it has a different story. There is much more decade and death on display on this ride however its still fine for kids as there isn’t any gore or blood on show.
One of the major differences is the language difference, since its primarily in French (as you might expect in France) which loses the story somewhat for English (or Spanish, German, Italian etc visitors) and my whole family didn’t really have a clue what the story was but the special effects are still as amazing as the ones in the USA but because of this, there isn’t much narration once the ride gets going, instead relying on just the special effects and music to tell a story.
There are some main parts from the original rides such as the heads in the domes, the dancing hall and the stretching room but they’ve added a extra few areas as the Phantom Manor is now part of Frontierland as apposed to Liberty Square which is a major twist of the story as the extra scenes take place in a “Western theme“ which incorporates the Thunder Mesa Mining Company into it. Personally the stretching room isn’t that much fun as everybody gets shoved into a dark room, squeezed together and the story is told in French, so if you have never been on the ride, you have no clue what is going on.
Other differences include the outside waiting area which is set up to look like it’s a empty area and left to almost rot as it looks overgrown and very un-Disney. But its missing my favourite part of queuing up in WDW is missing, the funny gravestones aren’t there, probably once again due to the language issue.
Basically the story follows the idea that the owner (Henry Ravenswood) of the Manor struck gold on Big Thunder Mountain and is killed by a Thunder Bird spirit, only to return on the day of his daughter’s wedding along with lots of other “guests” along with the Phantom who lures the groom to his death,
Just some facts for you, the Ride runs for about 6 minutes and holds 2 people per Doombuggies and uses 130 Doombuggies at any one time, which means over 2400 people per hour can take a trip through the manor. Phantom Manor also contains 92 Audio-Animatronics® characters, 54 animated props, 58 individual special effects and more than 400 special show props, making it one of the most elaborate attractions ever created for a Disney Theme Park.
There is little doubt that this character is one of the most popular vinyls from the Park 9 series as it stands out to all collectors even if they haven’t been to Disneyland Paris.
Will you be adding this one to your collection? And what are your thoughts on this Europe inspired Vinylmation?