The Wheel of Invention
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June 15, 2016
What I liked
The Twist To Reality: This is clearly a show designed for those who recognize the attractions/places that it mimics. For those of us who do, the twist is both brilliant and devastating. It’s like a funhouse mirror that made me laugh and damaged my soul in equal measure. I loved it and I was saddened by it at the same time—and that’s amazing. One of my favorite shows at Fringe this year.
The Bears: Brilliant.
The Birds: Brilliant.
The Wheel of Invention: The Whole Damn Thing. Brilliant.
What I didn't like
I sort of wish that the show had music that WASN’T actually coming from Disneyland itself in the production. Everything else is so CLOSE to but not ACTUALLY Disney that it almost seems like a cheat to use anything at all that’s ACTUALLY Disney. So if the production is going to keep going anywhere, I’d suggest finding a way (if at all possible) to get original music that’s inspired by the Disney music made so that it’s ALMOST that music…once again, take my childhood/Disney memories and destroy them!
My overall impression
When I saw the description for this show, I immediately bought tickets. I also did not tell my roommate what we were seeing for this one, as she’s a Disney fan and I wanted to see what her reaction to a show like this was going to be. And I almost feel like EVERYONE should take a real Disney fan with them when they go to see this show if they aren’t one themselves—because this show is SO INSPIRED by Disney that you need to know HOW GOOD it actually is, and it IS THAT GOOD.
Welcome to the terrible, awful theme park that Disney never built—but that is a far closer example of what humanity has actually REACHED, instead of what we ASPIRE to become. It’s a place where consumerism won. Where happiness falls to capitalism. Where love fails before desire and randomness happens to everyone. Where justice has no place and darkness comes for us all. It’s literally the Unhappiest Place on Earth—and for an hour, you’re trapped there with the rest of the audience, and your tour guide may or may not be an ally…or an enemy…or not even human any more.
And that’s just the first half of the show. Then we get to experience the entire attraction known as “The Wheel of Invention”, a rotating animatronic adventure that’s going to show us what mankind is going to be like for the next century. And the first section is such a SPOT ON parody of the actual Walt Disney World attraction “Carousel of Progress” that I was having nearly acid flashback-level moments that I could never have—because I’ve never done acid and the attraction doesn’t have a 2016 segment. And then it moves forward from there to a place that’s so dark I don’t want to spoil it and don’t want to even remember it, except to say that Disney fans need to experience it…and those who love to make FUN of Disney fans need to make fun of Disney fans by forcing them to experience it.
This is hands-down one of the best attractions at the Fringe theme park. You may have to be this high to ride it—but ride it you should. Before it breaks down for good, because no one in their right mind would EVER fix it.
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