Years ago I wrote a rather poignant essay which posed the question "Where have all the pirates gone?" Frankly, the enitre premise is now obsolete. They are everywhere and on everything.. especially movie screens. I'm not sure why I've been drawn to these smelly anti-heroes since I was a toddler, but I just have. My parents first fed my pirate cravings with the Weebles Treasure Island set. Soon after, I was introduced to the fine record pictured above. It's easily in the top three "most played" on my lifetime playlist. And if you too would like to have an eighteen minute audio tour of a village in chaos that's narrated by the brilliant Thurl Ravenscroft then you can grab it here via Rapidshare (sorry.)
What really kept me coming back to the album was the picture book that was glued into the dust jacket (until it was inevitably ripped out.) It's full of awesome shots of the ride from 1967, the year that it opened. I thought I'd share some of my favorites here. These photos are best viewed while laying on your stomach with your fists holding up your head by your chin as your elbows dig into the shag carpet...
Just imagine the anticipation and the excitement of having zero knowledge of what was ahead. Not one of those ladies in the front had ever seen a home video of the entire Pirates ride posted on YouTube. At best they might have seen some behind the scenes footage on The Magical World of Disney on some Sunday night. (All of these enlarge slightly when clicked.)
Disney World has one drop while Disneyland has two. This is mere trivia unless you really dislike drops.
I love it when the inside of buildings are designed to seem like the outdoors. Disney has certainly mastered this art.
Well, if all of that isn't enough to swash your buckles, take a listen to this marvelous 1967 radio commercial for the classic ride. Click, or do a "save as" on this link.
That's the way it was back when it was "an entirely new kind of family entertainment." Be sure to stop by the souvenir shop on your way out.