Ranking the Disney Cruise Line Shows
We have been fortunate enough to cruise on all four Disney Cruise Line ships. These are my opinions of the Disney Cruise Line shows. All of my 0-10 scores are for Disney standards. If they were compared to any other shows, then the ranking on all of them would be much higher.
9. Toy Story the Musical
Toy Story the Musical, thankfully, is retired. It was terrible. I could write for hours about it, or I could write for only a couple of minutes. The villain of the show, Sid, is awful. Fortunately, you will not have to watch this show. It is being replaced by Frozen the Musical. Score: 0/10.
8. Disney’s Wishes
While Disney’s Wishes is a good show, it is in my opinion, the weakest of the Disney Cruise Line’s musicals (now that Toy Story the Musical is no more). Disney’s Wishes follows three teenagers who are about to graduate from high school on a trip to Disneyland. While the storylines of other Disney musicals are predictable by Disney standards, this one seems more like a run of the mill high school musical sprinkled with a little Disney.
The characters are a brother and sister and the sister’s best friend. They are all very sad about going to different colleges and go on a magical journey to find their inner child again. This seems like pretty textbook Disney stuff, but the rest is like a typical Hollywood rubber-stamp. The brother falls in love with his sister’s friend. They will be together at the same college, but the sister reveals that she is going to a different school. In the end, they all say that they are happy for each other and live happily ever after.
The show has some fairly good songs. I enjoyed the scene where the three go on Splash Mountain. Overall though, the show is cheesy, boring, and poorly written. Score 5/10.
7. Disney’s Believe
(Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy)
I have seen Disney’s Believe twice, but appreciated it more the second time. The story is about a father and daughter on her birthday. The dad is a scientist, very rational. He is bent on showing his discoveries to a science board and is not paying attention to his daughter. His daughter is just the opposite. She loves magic and believes in her dreams.
The father finds a lamp, rubs it, and poof! Genie from Aladdin appears. He takes the father on a magical journey to learn to believe in magic and dreams. On the way, the father meets some of Disney characters, including Merlin and King Louis (two of my personal favorites). He finally learns to believe in magic and dreams; and learns that his daughter is more important than prestige.
It is a good show. While it did not catch me the first time, I liked it much better the second. Score: 7/10.
6. Villains Tonight
As a twist for Disney, Villains Tonight centers around the villains, instead of the heroes. Some of my favorite Disney characters are villains, and some of my favorite songs are sung by villains. So, I am a bit biased towards giving this show a good review, even if it is not one of the better shows.
Villains Tonight centers around Hades, who Disney uses as an unofficial head villain in this show ( and in Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom). Hades is told that the underworld is too happy. If he does not make it awful again, then he will be stripped of his title “Head of the Underworld.” Hades then, frantic to get the worst people to make the underworld scary and terrible again, tries to recruit some other Disney Villains.
I do not remember much about story line, honestly. I had to google search to glean as much as I have said already. The songs, I do remember, though. Unfortunately, the one that stuck out was an awful rendition Cruella de Ville. Cruella is my favorite villain, making it that even harder for me to listen to the song being butchered. The characters were well acted, though, especially Hades’ goofy assistants, Pain and Panic.
Overall, Villains Tonight was good, but not great. Score: 7/10.
5. Aladdin the Musical
No one can replace Robin Williams as Genie, and I knew that going in. However, the actor who played Genie in this show and in Disney’s Believe later that cruise, played the role extremely well. He was funny, sang well, looked the part, and was the best part of the show.
The rest of the show was good also. The effects made for some of the best, and worst parts of the show. In a fight scene, from our seats, we could see that punches were whiffing by about a foot. This makes sense because of safety, but it looked awful. A scene where the effects excelled is the The Cave of Wonders. It is a talking, tiger shaped cave, which they made look surprisingly good with what little room they had. Even better was when Aladdin and Jasmine hop out of Jasmine’s window and onto Aladdin’s magic carpet. They begin flying among clouds made by smoke machines.
That entire scene, and the singing which took place during it, was fantastic. Another great song came during the fight scene. Genie’s songs were wonderful, though;, again, not like Robin Williams, but how could it be? Score: 8/10.
4. Tangled the Musical
Tangled the Musical follows the story of one of my all-time favorite Disney movies, Tangled. It is only shown on the Disney Magic; so if you’re on the Disney Magic, this is a must see.
The acting was the high quality that would be expected from a Disney Cruise Line show, and the vocal talent of the cast ranged from good to amazing. The woman playing Mother Gothel, Rapunzel’s evil kidnapper, hit all the notes and sounded exactly like her character in the movie. The only voices that bugged me, were those of Rapunzel and Flynn. If I had never seen the movie Tangled, I would think that their voices were great. Since I love the movie Tangled, I know the songs by heart and noticed each note that was different from the movie. This being said, their voices were amazing. I never expected them to be as perfect as those in the movie, and I walked out of the theater thoroughly pleased. Score: 10/10.
3. Twice Charmed
Twice Charmed is the best redo of Cinderella’s story I have yet to see. It starts like the 1950’s Disney movie version of Cinderella, but adds an amazing twist. The star of the show is not Cinderella, but the step sister’s, evil fairy-godfather.
The story is as follows. Cinderella marries the prince, and lives happily ever after. But, the same is not true for her wicked stepsisters and evil stepmother. They are left back at their home, disgraced and furious at Cinderella’s fortune. While they bemoan their misfortune, they are visited by their own fairy godfather, who offers to make it as if Cinderella had never met the prince. The wicked stepmother then does her best to make the prince fall for her horrible daughters. This leads to an amazing looking black and white scene that is meant to look like a distorted reality. The Prince, of course, ends up remembering Cinderella, and all of the characters clothes magically become colorful again.
The singing is great. The effects are amazing. Twice Charmed has become my favorite version of Cinderella. I highly recommend this show. Score: 10/10.
1. (tie) The Golden Mickeys
(Disney Dream and Disney Wonder)
I have seen The Golden Mickeys twice, and both performances have been excellent.
The outside of the Walt Disney Theatre is decorated with golden banners with Mickey Mouse on them. Outside the theatre, it is as if you are entering a Hollywood awards show. A “TV correspondent” broadcasts from the entrance, interviewing little girls and boys coming to the big awards show, The Golden Mickeys. Inside the theatre, you can watch the woman on the screens on either side of the stage, interviewing the children and asking things like their favorite Disney character, movie, etc.
The plot of The Golden Mickeys revolves around a low level Disney cast member who is thrust into emceeing The Golden Mickeys (an Oscar-like awards show), when Bob Iger, president of Disney, cannot make it. During the coarse of the presentation, she overcomes her stage-fright, embraces her true self, and lives happily ever after. Tra-la-la. This is honestly the most boring part of the show.
Throughout the show, though, she introduces favorite Disney characters who sing their songs. There are songs from Snow White, Pinocchio, Tangled, and others. The Tangled scene with Rapunzel singing from a balcony while lanterns float in the sky is especially well done and is my favorite.
The songs and Disney characters more than make up for the weak emcee understory. The Golden Mickeys is a wonderful show. Score: 10/10.
1. (tie) Disney Dreams
(Disney Magic and Disney Wonder)
Finally, by the end of the show, the girl learns to believe in her dreams and flies. The flying scene is done way beyond expectations, just like the rest of the show. Score: 10/10.