Monday, July 29, 2013

People Want Jessica Rabbit In Disney Parks

The question is, which version should we see? While barraged by complaints about the mask, one thing is certainly clear now - whether or not it's with an improved mask or as a face character, people DO want to see a Jessica Rabbit mascot in the Disney parks. The people who were displeased by the look of the mask took to the internet in droves to make their opinion known. However, it didn't keep people from favoriting or liking the photos of Jessica's park debut, and there are some people now showing their appreciation for not only the costume, but the fact that Disney did something amazingly cool by prominently including the characters from Who Framed Roger Rabbit in their event.

By now, I have stopped reading the negative comments. Rarely do I assert a very personal opinion on this site, however, there are two things I want to address. First, there was apparently some backlash against the Disney Dreamers Everywhere guests, as they are being called (and I am paraphrasing) 'mean, rich people who have selfishly taken over the park.' So, as it seems, while some people are calling this group "lucky," others are complaining about these guests receiving such special treatment. I find this news quite unsettling and unfortunate. The good people of were extremely gracious to me in letting me use their photos on this site and replied to me immediately when I asked, as did several others I asked. These people, while quite lucky, have been good enough to share their experiences of this event with the world - as have many other attendees. They received a very special opportunity and I am grateful to all of them for sharing their stories, videos and photos with us.

(Photo left by Mouetto) Next is in regards to the Jessica mask. People's observations of it, while some having valid points, were mostly laden with immaturity and inappropriate comments. No, simply having Jessica being portrayed by an "adult entertainment" actress in Disney Parks is not a workable solution. No, I'm fairly sure actress Christina Hendricks won't quit her day job to become the new Jessica walk-around in the parks. No, a woman should NOT be forced to wear a corset to have her proportions closer match that of Jessica Rabbit. The person in that costume has normal human proportions and isn't a cartoon. No, simply putting a woman in a dress does not make it Jessica. Obviously, this website is about Jessica Rabbit - and obviously I am going to want the best outcome for this situation, as I don't want Disney to see the inappropriate comments and do away with the Jessica walk-around altogether. One persons comment hoped for just that, stating the Jessica Rabbit costume "turns me off to accepting her as a park character." It's an interesting comment. I have seen many women depicting the Disney Princesses who look nothing like the character. Does that mean we should never see them in the parks ever again?

There are a lot of people in support of ALL human Disney characters becoming face characters. Characters like Captain Hook, Queen of Hearts and Geppetto are masked. The Mad Hatter and Cinderella's Fairy Godmother are examples of characters who were switched over to be face actors. The rarely seen characters from the movie Atlantis were on hand for the Disney Dreamers Everywhere event - and it does make you question why Milo and Kida are face actors, yet the Vinny Santorini character (also a human) is masked. The same could be asked about Carl Fredricksen and Russell from the movie UP. The two are human, but are completely masked characters without much complaint at all from Disney guests. One would have to wonder, would the effect be the same if they were face players and standing next to the costumed Dug the dog character? I've never seen the movie UP, and while I know what the character looks like, I'd never argue to just - put a man in a suit and make-up and that's sufficient to be Carl. The masked character already has a lot of charm and appeal. That same charm would be lost if the human Eddie Valiant character is included and would be with a face version of Jessica. Something wouldn't be quite right, or the face version Must be done up just so that the illusion really works well for there to be the element of human Eddie standing next to his cartoon friends. (Images right,below via DLRP Express)

Mouetto from Disney Central Plaza saw the Jessica Rabbit mask in person at the event and even with the language barrier, this is the most concise opinion so far:
Pour l'avoir vu en vrai, je peux vous dire que moi aussi, j'ai trouvé qu'elle faisait un peu peur. Cela aurait pu mieux passer si sa mèche avait couvert son oeil droit comme la plupart du temps dans le film. De plus, au niveau du front, son profil est convexe et n'est pas conforme au profil concave du personnage du film. J'ai justement posé la question pourquoi il ne s'agissait pas d'une Face Character et on m'a expliqué simplement que Jessica Rabbit est une toon, d'où le masque.

The rough translation:
To have seen it in person, I can say to you that me also, I found that she did look a little scary. It would have passed better if her hair had covered her eye as most of the time in the film. Of more, at the level of the forehead, her profile is convex and is not in accordance with the concave profile of the appearance of the film. I exactly asked the question why she was not a Face Character and someone explained to me simply that Jessica Rabbit is a toon, for which the mask.

Finally, the real issue! The profile and shape of the mask is wrong. This is an important piece because as you can see from the photos above, it's not Jessica's profile at all. The mask is also quite small, making the head look very tiny, and throws off her proportions. The expression also lacks the attitude and verve that we know of Jessica. Something I noticed upon close inspection of the mask in photos is Jessica's right eye is made slightly higher than the left. This had to be an error in making the mask, and while not always obvious when looking at it, it adds even more to your own eyes telling you the looks of the mask is off. Her eyes are also too big with the eyelash line curved. The lash line should be straight, and they could probably do away with the big fake lashes in favor of one painted on black line. The bottom black lines of her eyes should be removed altogether.

My assumption is that the eyes are big because that is the part of the mask the person can see through - and that the purple eyeshadow is painted on. To get the correct eye shape, the purple eyeshadow should also be see-through for the person inside so that the eye's can be made smaller, but wont be too small for the person to see out of. You've seen city buses using sticker wrapping covering it for an advertisement - you can see the picture in full color while people inside the bus can see out. Disney can surely perfect this technique for its character mask eyes. The body suit is great, but many people noticed how around the neck it bunches up, making it look like wrinkles. I have no doubt this is the reason they added that necklace - using it to take any attention away from those fabric folds. The rest of the costume though is very nicely done. As for people's fears that there may be a man in that costume, I'm not sure what to say other than we're talking about costumed characters in an amusement park - you have no idea what any of these performers really look like and it really shouldn't matter. (Photos left,blow courtesy of Bert Snyers)

The photos of Jessica, while garnering much negative feedback and other comments, are still getting lots of likes, shares and have some people feeling fine with the look. Another individual, Lolc, wrote:"j'aimerais une photo avec Jessica Rabbit.", which roughly translates to, "I would like a photo with Jessica Rabbit." Many were happy to see Roger, Jessica AND Eddie Valiant given some attention in the park. Some other comments on the video of Jessica's performance have been:

Roger et Jessica je les adore!!! - Roger and Jessica I loved it!!!

J'aimerais voir ça plus souvent sur le parc... - I would like to see this more often in the park ...

trop beau - Too beautiful

As we have seen with the current Merida Makeover debate - people care about their favorite characters. Other people, however, will naturally find no issue with Merida's makeover, just as they feel putting a woman in a dress is sufficient to bring Jessica to life. It simply does not matter as much to them if it's not their favorite character. Regardless if the solution is a better mask, a half-suit which covers the body and shows real face, or a full face character - there still needs to be something special and something Disney about the look - and THAT point was completely lacking in people's comments. (Photo right via the Radio Disney Club)

Even though it was not 100% what I expected, I was very excited seeing my favorite character included after 25 years in any way. This was probably THE biggest news for the site ever. I am extremely grateful they did make efforts to bring Jessica into the park. So, I will leave you with something I never thought I'd see and thoroughly enjoyed: Jessica Rabbit dancing with over 70 characters in a Disney Park.