R.I.P. Splash Mountain

(Curiously, the resale value of a “Song of the South” VHS tape is well above the other Disney movies. Unlike most VHS titles is a genuine collectors item. Even the Chinese bootleg versions – DD)

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(The American Conservative) It is unbecoming of an adult to speak publicly about Disney theme parks, but I lament the demise of Splash Mountain.

The log flume coaster, which featured characters from the controversial 1946 film Song of the South, was one of the most popular features of Disney’s American parks, and revitalized a previously quiet corner of Disneyland. Yesterday, on its final day, a massive crowd stood shoulder to shoulder outside the attraction, waiting one last time to descend into its famous briar pit.

Splash Mountain opened in 1989 and was inspired by the animal characters in Song of the South, such as “Br’er Rabbit” and “Br’er Fox,” and the film’s award-winning musical number, “Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah.” Five years earlier, Disney executives had decided not to release Song of the South on home video given complaints about the film’s romantic portrayal of black life in the postbellum South. Splash Mountain designers had omitted one of the film’s lead characters, the black storyteller Uncle Remus, from the attraction to avoid controversy.

There were no references to race or slavery in the coaster, but some of the characters from the “forbidden” film were prominently featured in…

R.I.P. Splash Mountain – The American Conservative