Monday, August 16, 2004

Bat vibes

Never mind why, but the Hub and I found ourselves in a theme park outside Gotham City last week. The only "attraction" either of us was particularly interested in was called something like "Batman: The Adventure". We'd seen a very hot Batman at a party several years ago and learned that his suit came from this same attraction, so we wanted to see it in action, ideally hugging the skin of some athletic stud.

The exterior set was appealing--an amalgam of Gotham and the Joker's hideout--but the actual show (which is simply a "show," and not a ride of any kind, which was fine by me) took place on an indoor stage, big enough to accomodate a cast of 10 or 15 plus several motorcycles. And flame-throwing devices.

Motorcycles and fire: that was pretty much the whole show. Bad guys on cycles shooting fire, Batman on his cycle shooting more fire. Back to the bad guys. Back to Batman. The main bad guy turned out to be the Joker (wearing a rubber Joker mask), and he, too, employed the m/f combo. (On second thought, he had no motorcycle--more like a customized dune buggy.) All the dialogue was prerecorded--a wise choice, since it's performed 3 times a day for months on end, and you don't want your cast (mostly athletes rather than actors) losing their minds, particularly not when wielding flame-throwers. The entire thing was over in just over 15 minutes. No deathtraps, no threatened unmaskings, no kinky bondage to warp the psyches of the pre-teen audience for life, nothing but motorcycles and fire. Even the batsuit was a letdown: sort of like one of those grade-Z Halloween outfits; nothing like the sexy one we'd seen at the party.

In short, a real bat-bummer. Nice gift shop, though--and in this world of branded "experiences" and synchronistic "attractions," is't that what's it all really about?

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