Tokyo Disneyland Winter Trip Report – Part 2

This post picks up where Part 1 of our Tokyo Disney Resort Winter Trip Report left off, midday through our second day at Tokyo DisneySea. (If you care about photos, don’t miss page 2–that’s where the good ones are!)

For page 1, we’ll start with everyone’s favorite: some rambling text. Our FastPass window opened as we finished lunch, so we headed there next. This was a new-to-us version of Tower of Terror, known as “Tower of Terror: Shadow of Shiriki.” There’s little info on this version of the attraction outside of this TDR Explorer post.

Suffice to say, it’s a more intense version of the normal Tower of Terror (which is very tame in Tokyo DisneySea–this brings it on par with the U.S. versions) and a few new visual effects. It’s a nice plussing of the standard version of the attraction, and I wish it would run year-round.

Normally, the drop sequence is the most disappointing aspect of Tokyo DisneySea’s Tower of Terror. Someone once described it to me as a walk-through attraction with a drop at the end, and I think that’s perfectly apt. As a walk-through, Tower of Terror is brilliant. The level of detail is staggering. The drop is (normally) a letdown. (WOW TOM, CLEVER PUN.) This remedies that issue.

Following Tower of Terror, we met up with some friends. If there’s one constant about Disney, it’s that no matter where you go, all fans speak the same language of Disney-dorkiness. This is enough to overcome the slight language barrier. They joined us for the rest of the day…

Big Band Beat was next on our agenda, and even though we lost the lotto (I was a bit surprised it was even running given the low crowd levels), we were able to grab seats via standby with ease shortly before the show.

Photography is not normally allowed in Big Band Beat, but we previously saw a preview show during which it was allowed on our last trip, but I’ll include some of those photos now to give you an idea of what this show is like.

We only had the chance to see the Tokyo DisneySea 15th Anniversary version of Big Band Beat once on our last trip, and lost the lotto every single time, so this was only our second chance to see the new show.

I think after the first viewing, my take on the new Big Band Beat was that it was slightly better than the original. Upon seeing it again (twice) this trip, I now think the old version was slightly better. I guess I was so caught up in the hype of the new show the first time around?

In any case, both versions are exceptional. The highlight of the original remains in the new version, and that’s what matters most. The reason for my change of heart is that I think things drag slightly at the beginning in the new version.

I also prefer some of the staging in the original, most notably the light-up stairway for “Jazz Babies.”

For most people, which version of Big Band Beat is better is probably going to be close to a toss-up. This is a good thing, as there was really only one direction to go if the show was going to change dramatically in quality.

There is something to be said to have something of the same high caliber, but that’s different. Helps keep Tokyo DisneySea fresh (although I probably could watch either version of Big Band Beat all day everyday, so I’m not sure how much ‘freshness’ is necessary here.)

After leaving Big Band Beat, we briefly wandered around American Waterfront. The “Sweet Duffy” celebration has spilled out of Cape Cod into portions of this area of American Waterfront, namely at Scrooge’s Department Store and New York Deli.

The Sweet Duffy taglines are comically cute. Phrases like “Duffy brings love” and other straight-forward statements of positivity. The sentimentality of it all struck me; I can’t quite articulate why, but it just seemed weird.

Perhaps I’m too cynical, or maybe Americans are too cynical (or both), but I can’t imagine seeing signs like these in the U.S. parks.

Despite the temperature, it really was a beautiful day. I’ll take cold weather if it means skies like this and low crowd levels!

We then wandered back to Cape Cod and caught the DisneySea Transit Steamer Line to Lost River Delta.

I love transportation attractions, and the Steamer Line at Tokyo DisneySea is no exception.

There are multiple routes, each with interesting visuals, and it’s a wonderful way to enjoy the ultimate Disney “ambiance park.”

Since we were in the neighborhood with some time to kill until Out of Shadowland, we decided to catch Sindbad’s Storybook Voyage again. This is another attraction I notice new details on every time. Here are a few of my photos from this ride-through:

(I just discovered there’s a Nippon Express a few miles from us. Even though I have nothing to ship, I think I’m going to use them to mail some random stuff, and explain it’s in thanks for their loyal support of #TeamChandu.)

Aside from one trip during which the attraction was closed for refurbishment, we’ve done Sindbad’s Storybook Voyage at least once every single day we’ve gone to Tokyo DisneySea. I think if I had to choose between every other attraction in Tokyo DisneySea or Sindbad’s Storybook Voyage being down for refurbishment on my trip, I’d pick the former option. No joke!

We still had some extra time, and Raging Spirits only had a 10 minute wait, so we…just kidding. Even 10 minutes isn’t short enough to convince me to bother with Raging Spirits. It’s a weak attraction, but at least it looks cool, I guess.

Instead, we just spent a few minutes absorbing some of the details of Lost River Delta. Due to its location in the back of the park, this is where we spend the least amount of time. Even though we enjoy the atmosphere, attractions, and restaurants of Lost River Delta, most of our trips are quick dashes to the Single Rider line of Indiana Jones Adventure, and then right back out. This is another reason a Scandinavian port would be a welcome addition–it would be adjacent to Lost River Delta and we’d likely end up spending more time in both. On page 2, we’ll review Out of Shadowland and share photos from sunset & night!


33 Responses to “Tokyo Disneyland Winter Trip Report – Part 2”
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