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Friday, April 30, 2010
My 1980s Monster Plantation Model
At some point in the 1980s, I made my own Monster Plantation ride.
I started with a great battery-operated Water Coaster toy. This used real water, and it was great fun watching the little people race through the tiny water flume and up the lift hill over and over again. The rafts would actually splash water out of the track sometimes.
I made cut-outs of the monsters using the Monster Plantation Postcard book illustrations as a guide. I drew the monsters on pieces of plywood, then my Dad cut them out for me, and I painted them. You can see the high-tech hot glue and wood triangles used to stand the monsters up.
I included the Boat Eater character from the ride for the "finale." There was a great picture of him in an issue of the National Geographic World magazine that I used as a reference.
Also part of this model is a PVC figure of Fuzzball, a little alien creature from the 1986 Michael Jackson 3-D film, "Captain EO." This movie was shown at Disneyland, Epcot, Tokyo Disneyland, and Disneyland Paris. "Captain EO" recently returned to Disneyland, and is expected to return to the other Disney parks in the near future.
Snarf from the Thundercats animated TV series can also be found here (twice!). These are Snarf "strawholders" from a Thundercats Burger King Kids Meal from 1986. I was thrilled to get these.
The pink, bat-like plastic figurine seen here is a character named Belfry from the 1986 Filmation animated TV series, Ghostbusters (not to be confused with the famous Bill Murray movie from 1984). Filmation based this cartoon off of their own live-action TV series from 1975. I thought Belfry looked similar to Mizzy Scarlett's pet, Tatty-too, from the Monster Plantation ride.
Audrey 2 the plant from The Little Shop of Horrors is also here. This toy had been filled with candy (just open Audrey 2's mouth!). Feed me!!!
I painted the ride track and the Boat Eater with glow-in-the-dark paint so I could run the ride at night.
The Water Coaster bit the dust many, many years ago and wound up in the trash. I miss it.