Now that we learned the history of the ride, how about we hop in our Doom Buggies and take a look at the mansion ourselves. Watch the video above, and I’ll talk about each ride scene and their story and my opinion on them.
1. Queue Line – Other than the ominous mansion before you, there really isn’t much in this queue. It’s just plants. Just be thankful you don’t get to stay there long. I’ve never seen the queue line go longer than 25 minutes. At least, from when I’ve been there.
2. Foyer – With the spider web flooring and the chandelier hanging down, this room serves as a perfect beginning to this ride. And do you see those candles on the walls? Look underneath them to see a Hidden Mickey.
And by the way, don’t you hate it when people keep talking over the Ghost Host’s dialogue? Half the time, I can’t understand what he’s saying!
3. The Stretching Room – The door opens and we enter a small, circular room filled with pictures of the mansion’s past residents in their “corruptible, mortal state.”
Suddenly, the room starts stretching and the paintings reveal the hilariously dark full painting. Then sounds of thunder are heard, and we see the Ghost Host’s body hanging from the roof. A secret door opens, and we are let out.
This is one of my favorite parts of the ride. The creepy music, the hilariously dark portraits, and the Ghost Host’s monologue beautifully said by Paul Frees.
4. Limbo – We go down a hallway with various changing portraits and two busts that stare you down. Then you enter a dark loading area, and you are loaded into your Doom Buggie. The Ghost Host lowers your safety bar, and the tour begins.
Man, is this place dark. I can barely see in this room. But I do love the creepy, dark void that we are entering. Apparently this is Limbo, and I can certainly believe it is. I love the Grand Staircase that the Doom Buggies travel through. It brings the idea that this house is somewhat possessed. Or something like that…
5. The Endless Hallway – Here we see a hallway that appears to be endless (hence “The Endless Hallway”). A candelabra is floating in the distance.
I was never a big fan of the scene, but I do like the idea of it. I never really saw it creepy or impressive.
6. Conservatory – A corpse desperately crying for help is trying to get out of his coffin.
This scene is actually sick if you think about it. Imagine for a second that this wasn’t a ride. Would you be freaked out by this? I certainly would.
7. The Corridor of Doors – A corridor line with doors with sounds of maniacal laughter and screaming are in this scene. It is freaking scary.
8. The Seance Room – The head of the ghostly Madame Leota is trapped in her crystal ball. She summons the spirits, and they respond.
This scene is really cool. The effect is cool, the idea is cool, and the voice of Leota is cool.
9. The Ballroom – The ghosts have responded. They are starting to materialize. The ghosts dance and party. They eat and get drunk (which is weird because they are ghosts).
This scene is an old trick made new again. I’m not going to get into it. I’m saving that for next episode.
10. The Attic – You climb the stairs to the attic. Eerie wedding organ music is heard. The story of Constance Hatchaway is unfolding.
If you don’t know the story, check it out. This is my favorite and least favorite part of the ride. I love the story, but the scene scares the living heck out of me!
11. Graveyard – You descend down the balcony and all the ghosts have materialized and are now having fun.
I’ve heard things about you dying in this scene, but I’m not really sure if that’s true. Either way, this is the best part of the ride.
12. The Hitchhiking Ghosts – The Ghost Host returns to warn you of the Hitchhiking Ghosts. You look in your mirror and one of the three hitchhiking ghosts are in your doom buggie.
I love this scene. This is possibly the coolest idea in the history of humanity. I know it looks cooler in Disney World, but you can’t beat the original.
But I am pretty sure one of them did follow me home…
13. The Exit – You exit your doom buggie as the Ghost Hostess tells you to “hurry back” in the creepiest way possible. You exit the crypt as the Ghost Host has the last laugh.
Coolest. Laugh. Ever.
So that is Walt Disney’s Haunted Mansion. I hope you liked this. Next time, I will be talking about the various effects and illusions used to bring this mansion to life.
See you later, Animators!