RECAP: If you’re just now joining us, where ya been? OK here’s the deal: me and the family went to Disneyworld with a dollar and a dream. Our dream was to see magic! We snatched Peter Pan and tried to make him fly…from the top of Cinderella’s castle. We made him fall. From the top of Cinderella’s castle. And then we ran. We got chased by the Mickeys (Disney’s mouse-eared security force), stole a tram full of weary patrons, made our way to Hollywood Studios, got stopped by stormtroopers, The Honey Badger became a rebel spy, The Boy had an “accident,” my Wife stole the ruby red slippers, we rode the Tower of Terror (and then it broke down), Tanner fell (HARD), and the Space Rangers took The Boy into custody. And we’re still stuck in the park…
Shit Shit Shit.
Now what are we supposed to do? My first inclination is to just walk and leave The Boy as a down payment on Peter Pan’s round-the-clock medical bills. I hope the fairy has AFLAC because there’s a pigeon chasing us, singing “Pays the doctors, Boyeee!!” But that actually isn’t gonna fly with my wife so we have to come up with a strategy to get him back.
After mouse-eared Mickeys, leapfrogging Space Rangers, fat Han Solo, and Janey and Tanner’s bullshit, I think a full-scale, hair-raising, skin-of-your-teeth, stunt mission is in effect. Lucky for us Disney can afford to license the premier motion picture stuntsman: Indiana Jones. Off to the show.
The Indiana Jones Stunt Show & Casino showcases a small selection of the Raiders of the Lost Ark stunts we’ve come to know and love. There’s the big-ass ball, spears that shoot out of the walls and floor, flames, the Nazi brute and the plane fight. It was pretty cool…well, it would be if time had been kind to Indy. It hasn’t. Indiana Jones has gotten a little old over the years. And fat. And drunk.
See, the stunt show has changed a bit as time as passed to accommodate Indy’s “maturation.” The ball is really a great big Whopper, spears are Nerf darts the size of potbelly pigs, and, to make Indy run, the attendants hide caches of Pabst Blue Ribbon throughout the arena. This is our solution?
But we have to find The Boy and I have no idea where to start. I lose it, grab the first freckled-faced stagehand clad in puffy clothes I can find and try to shake the teeth out of his head. “Where is my kid?!” He starts to cry because no one at Disney is ever upset, he tries to run and, in the process, I rip his shirt. Tattooed on his back, in glittering ink, is a full-color map of Hollywood Studios complete with a sticky You Are Here jewel. And then I see it.
In the center of the map.
The Big Blue Hat.
I spread the kid out on the ground, smooth him out like the map he is. “That’s where we have to go.” But the show is starting and Indy is shakily leaping over Nerf spears, shuffling toward a rocky ramp with a golden idol at the top. The idol! Wife starts moving before I do, pinballing through flashes of flame, smacking life-size Nerf darts aside, and crashing into Indy. “Hey!” he says. “Beer!” she says, pointing. “Where?” he turns and she’s gone, dashing up the ramp. She grabs the idol.
There is no beer. Indy says, “Give me the idol!”
“Help me find my kid!”
The crowd thinks it’s part of the show. They say, “Help me find my kid, I’ll give you the idol!”
Indy relents. “Where’s the beer?”
“In the Big Blue Hat,” the Wife says.
We’re off and running. Down the ramp to the Nazi warplane in the back. When we get back there, the big burly guy is laid out and the Honey Badger is in the pilot seat. I don’t even ask what happened but her knuckles are bloody. Fine. Whatever. We pile in. Indy finds a six-pack in the cockpit and we roll out of the arena to the center of Hollywood Studios.
We round the man-made puddle called Echo Lake into the 138th parade of the day. While the kids are singing old High School Musical numbers, Muppets and Monsters Inc. characters frighten the multitudes of children just trying to leave the park. And then we see The Boy. He’s underneath the Big Blue Hat, surrounded by a bunch of kindergartners dressed like Ewoks and the savages from the Recess Kids, getting slow-roasted over a bunch of multicolored glow sticks like Rotisserie Gold.
“You gotta help save him,” I say to Indy.
“There’s beer back there,” my Wife says.
“I’m too old for this shit,” says Indy.
The Honey Badger pops the cockpit, stands up and sings the Indiana Jones theme song: “Da-da-da-Daaaah, Da-da-dah, Da-da-DA-DAAH, Da-da-da-da-DAAAH!”
And Indy’s feeling it! He snaps out his whip, flips it around a powerline above and executes a beautiful Spiderman-style swing for The Boy. It is majestic! And poorly aimed. He misses. Badly. The parade stops. The crowd goes “Oooh!” The fake Ryan Seacrest from the American Idol pavilion says, “THIS is American—oooh! That’s gonna leave a mark.”
But Indy falls on the edge of the rotisserie and The Boy is flung in the air. He flips end over end, tumbling above the crowd and lands on the wing of the plane. Perfect!
But now everybody’s pissed. We screwed up the parade, stole the idol, broke Indiana Jones, deprived the kindergartners of their lunch (and they are cranky–waaaaayyy past nap time!) They turn on us like we spoke Voldemort’s name.
I yell, “Hit it!”
Honey Badger pounds the gas and we rumble out of Hollywood Studios followed by a fake Ryan Seacrest, imitation Troy and Gabriela, Mike and Sully, and 2 Space Rangers, and the extras from Indiana Jones
Now the thrilling conclusion!