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Hollywood Baby (Or Universal's Version)

Universal Studios Hollywood: Jason Lester goes to yet another theme park. His advice: Put some more rides in, Universal!

From Jason Lester
Posted December 24, 2004 at 11:47 PM
So, here comes another trip report just a few days after the last one. This time I went to Universal Studios Hollywood which I admit to going to way too much considering I live 40 minutes away. At least I got to show my cousin's (who had never been) around. My cousin's incude Devin and Cortney and their parents Sean and Shean. Note the spelling so you don't get confused. Anyhow, we got a very late start and didn't arrive to 12:00 at which point my cousins decided they were hungry. We stopped outside the park for a quick lunch at some western resteraraunt outside the park. The food was mediocre to put it nicely. We then entered the park.

Once inside, we headed straight to Van Helsing: Fortress Dracula with a 5 minute wait. We walked right in. The sets are very good on this walk through but there is a lack of scare actors and only one good scare at the end. The movie was bad to though. We had time to kill until Waterworld so we walked around the Nick Blast Zone where I was soaked by a burst of water from a rocket ship. I was miserable the whole day. Waterworld didn't help much when I was hit with more water. Waterworld is a great show, don't miss it!

Next we headed down to the Lower Lot and walked right onto Jurassic Park being that it was freezing out. This is a fun ride, but gets boring after repeat visits. You don't get very wet either. Next we had to drag Devin on Revenge Of The Mummy which had a 30 minute wait. Note: Stick your hand in the hole in the wall during the line for a surprise. This is a very fun ride and we had a great picture. There is a fun launch and good backwards portion. Was that last room really neccesary though. I had no clue what was happening. We then walked on Backdraft, another stunt show. You can skip it.

We walked back up to the Upper Lot for our last ride, the Studio Tour. It was very dark out and we got the last tram. The whole ride was pitch black and we couldn't see anything except for the ride portions, a scale jumbo jet cut in half(which was extremly cool), and Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives. I also got hit with a tree brach when it poked into our tram. For a park that makes billions of dollars a year, you think they could trim their trees and install some lights.

We then left and ate dinner at the okay Tony Roma's on Citywalk. We left feeling satisfied enough. My advice: Put some more rides in Universal!


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.

From Justin Cornwall
Posted December 26, 2004 at 9:25 AM
Your right, They do need some more rides in there. I live about 15 minutes away and I have a pass so you know....I know my USH.

About The Mummy, You need to listen to the ramblings of that old woman on the mirror for the last room to make sense. Let me explain because I have nothing better to do: Imhotep has come back once again and until the sun comes around and the eclipse is over, He's got the power. In the last room, look at the celing, the sun comes around and TA DA! Imhotep is dead and you escaped the tomb.

Now about the Tour (some of you saw my 'highlighted' review of it) That jumbo jet has been changing every time I see it, which is about 3 times a month (my regular goings.) It will be used in Steve. Speilbergs new movie, War of The Worlds. I dont know about you, but when I went they said "LOOK TO THE LEFT!" and wouldnt shut up about how they filmed Fear Factor in the pool....Obviously a distraction for the thing you would see looking to the right (the jet).

Now to the bad part of the last thing that happened at WaterWorld one time, 3 days ago one of the firework "HOT" ashes hit some guys jacket, I didnt see if it actually hurt him, but I think there would be some lawsuit coming into action?

From Jason Lester
Posted December 26, 2004 at 2:45 PM
They told us to look at it and that it was for a new movie, but it was confidential. I can't wait for War Of The Worlds though. And we weren't in that chamber room long enough to hear her really.

From Tonya Gaddy
Posted December 26, 2004 at 11:33 PM
They do not need to get more rides in my opinion, but they can spicy up their old ones. They just got a new ride! And I still can't believe already someone died on... um... by it.

From Robert Niles
Posted December 27, 2004 at 4:55 PM
That was at Universal Orlando, not USH. And the deceased suffered from a preexisting medical condition that contributed to their death from what otherwise would have been relatively mild injuries from a fall.

From Tonya Gaddy
Posted December 29, 2004 at 2:12 AM
People are stupid sometimes. Yes, riding those dark rides are fun, but are they really worth your time when you have serious medical problems?

From Jason Lester
Posted December 29, 2004 at 10:20 AM
THe death thing was in Orlando, yes. I've heard their version of Mummy is better though. I'm going to Orlando for spring break so I'll have to check it out. And yes, Universal does need a few new things. Maybe a dark without a coaster part. We all know Backdraft is ready to move on, so take that out, and you have a large building. I like the idea of updating the building where Van Helsing is whenever they release new horror films with haunted house capable themes. Is White Noise a Universal movie? That might make a cool house.

From Robert Niles
Posted December 29, 2004 at 11:12 AM
Tonya, what on Earth is your comment supposed to mean?

First, you demonstrated that you have no idea what you are writing about when you confused the L.A. and Orlando versions of this ride. Then, you seem to be saying that a dead man was "stupid" for wanting to go to a theme park while awaiting an organ transplant. The person tripped and fell. The only reason he died was that his body in a weakened condition could not recover from the injuries from the fall. But he could have tripped off a sidewalk or down some stairs and met the same fate. Plenty of people awaiting transplants or suffering from terminal illness enjoy visits to theme parks, as they provide one of the safest entertainment environments for people in ill health.

I know Kevin's not around much anymore to whip new posters into shape... or drive them off the board, but please, folks, engage your brain before posting.

From Jason Lester
Posted January 1, 2005 at 7:01 PM
If I was dying I might want to go to a theme park also so I could visit one of the places I love before I die. It's not a stupid idea!

From mike brunson
Posted January 4, 2005 at 6:48 PM
they need to put more rides in

From Lisa Jones
Posted January 6, 2005 at 12:48 AM
Thanks for the trip report Jason. Fun as usual.

From Jason Lester
Posted January 6, 2005 at 4:22 PM
Thanks

From josh revani
Posted July 16, 2005 at 12:44 PM
wait, universal wants their rides to be in a story. They dont like their rides without a story in it.


How bout this

Fast and the Furious the ride (like back to the future)

King Kong 3D

Men in Black: Alien Attack

The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman

To you guys, how bout- Mummy for The incredible hulk coaster?

Now that will be a cool theme park!!!

From Jason Lester
Posted July 16, 2005 at 9:22 PM
And where's the space for all this?

From Danny Bernard
Posted July 16, 2005 at 9:57 PM
Build up? :-)

From Jason Lester
Posted July 17, 2005 at 9:22 AM
LOL! How about take out those stupid Sound Stage shows on the lower lot and kill Backdraft, which has seen better days. I mean the movie was out years ago!

Then put two new rides in those buildings. There is room. Now going with your build up idea. It might work. Add another level to buildings like the Backdraft and Sound Stage Shows building and put in a dark ride or something on the top floor. Sort of like the rumors about DCA putting in two dark rides on top of eachother in the Paradise Pier section.

Whatever Universal does, it needs to be done soon.

From josh revani
Posted July 17, 2005 at 1:06 PM
How about the effect stages for "Cat in the Hat". The Kids really need something to go on, a enjoyable, fun dark ride. How bout Backdraft for "Dr.Doom's: Tower of Doom" Universal really need a fearfall ride, so there it goes, and Van Helsing is the worst attraction, so how bout a men in black: alien attack ride.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 17, 2005 at 10:21 PM
I'm not sure there's enough room in those locations for the rides your describing. The only one that would work is Dr. Doom where Backdraft is. The problem here is, I don't want to see a bunch of clones. New, exciting rides draw many more guests. Look to TOT at DCA for proof.

From josh revani
Posted July 19, 2005 at 8:56 PM
well, first of all, dr. doom DOES fit in the backdraft area, trust me, but im not sure cat in the hat does, but lets do a Dr. Doom: Tower of Doom, a fear fall ride. now that will be cool. but mostly please take out the Van helsing ride, its not even scary at all1

From josh revani
Posted July 19, 2005 at 9:00 PM
AND I SEND SO MANY F*CKING IDEAS TO THE OWNER OF UNIVERSAL, HE DOSENT LIKE IT, HES AN ASS, HE SOLD OFF THE AMPITHATER TO GIBSON TO GET THE MONEY FOR FEAR FACTOR, HE ALSO LET NBC OWN UNIVERSAL TO BUILD UP REVENGE OF THE MUMMY. THAT IS THE STUPIDEST IDEA EVER!

SPIDERMAN 3D RIDE--> BTTF

TRUST ME THAT FITS, I KNOW, I STUDY UNIVERSAL FOR THE PAST 6 YEARS.

From josh revani
Posted July 19, 2005 at 9:04 PM
O YA, WAT DO YOU MEAN JASON LESTER...WAT DO YOU MEAN BY PUTTING CLONES? GIVE ME AN EXAMPLE

From Jason Lester
Posted July 20, 2005 at 9:00 AM
No need to get angry dude.

I agreed that Dr. Doom would fit in Backdraft, it was the others I had a problem with BTW.

And by putting clones I mean like when Disney put at TOT in DCA. They just copied the Florida one. Ya, they changed it a bit, but when you get down to it, it's the same ride.

And just curious, I'm sure Universal get tons of suggestions, why would you think they'd listen to yours above everyone else's.

From Danny Bernard
Posted July 20, 2005 at 12:29 PM
Obviously because it's written in all caps ;)

But I went to USH yesterday and I couldnt even get on Revenge of the Mummy because it was broken for around 3-4 hours. And tried Fear Factor but it was so packed I couldnt find any seats, but anyway they need some more rides to filter around the crowds on busier days. Maybey a King Kong attraction to take the place of Back to the Future? And to revitalize the shoot-em-up dark ride theme how bout removing the Special Effects Stage Show and putting in a "Doom" version based on the upcoming movie?

From Jason Lester
Posted July 20, 2005 at 7:44 PM
A Doom ride would be awesome.

From josh revani
Posted July 20, 2005 at 9:57 PM
Listen, im not 21, IM 12 years old, and I'm one smart, easily-angry kid and im a real themepark god, and ya a doom fearfall ride is excellent. But HOW BOUT THAT SPECIAL EFFECT STAGES, THAT NEED TO GO, I WAS BORED IN TEARS. AND REVENGE OF THE MUMMY NEEDS TO GO. ITS NOT EVEN THRILLING AT ALL!!! HOW BOUT MUMMY FOR THE INCREDIBLE HULK COASTER, WITH HULK DESTROYING BUILDINGS AND HELICOPTERS IN THE TOP SHOOTING HULK WITH SOME FIRE EXPLOSIONS. NOW THAT WILL BE COOL, DO YOU THINK THAT?

From josh revani
Posted July 20, 2005 at 10:01 PM
AND BACK TO THE FUTURE SHOULD GO IN FOR SPIDERMAN 3D RIDE WHICH WAS BUILT BY UNIVERSAL'S VERY OWN KING "ISLAND OF ADVENTURES." I WENT ON IT AND WAS VERY THRILLED. A+++! AND FEAR FACTOR SHOULD'NT ALWAYS PUT THE SAME STUNTS EVERY TIME!!! AT LEAST CHANGE THE STUNTS EVERY DAY. PLUS, VAN HELSING FOR MEN IN BLACK ALIEN ATTACK, THE MAZE IS LIKE 50 MINUTES FOR ME, SO WE CAN PUT A MEN IN BLACK FOR VAN HELSING. DOES THIS HELP?

From josh revani
Posted July 20, 2005 at 10:08 PM
AND I WAS F*CKING ANGRY DANNY, SO HOW BOUT SHUTING UP AND CONCENTRATE ON DIFFERENT SH*T.

From Ryan Milanio
Posted July 20, 2005 at 10:17 PM
OK, Let's think sensible here. Universal Studios Hollywood is very very small. Roller coasters are very hard to place in that theme park. Movies are made throughout the year, and roller coasters make a lot of sound. It will detract where Universal get's most of its money...the movie. The Hulk Roller Coaster is a big roller coaster. The only place I can imagine putting it would be the lower lot. If they want to expand, they'll have to remove Citywalk...in which they won't. Maybe get rid of the Gibson Theatre. Most of us, Los Angeles residents, go to Staples Center, Shrine Auditorium, and Anaheim Pond for shows, or concerts. BUT..Universal sold to Gibson and Gibson owns the property. Bad move. They could've expanded on that lot. Right now the most sensible thing to take out is BackDraft and Sound Effects. I like the idea of a Doom ride, but I have a feeling Universal will put some sort of show.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 20, 2005 at 10:35 PM
Thank you Ryan for calmly stating your opinions. And dude, I'm 13 and still manage to properly type and say what I want to say without putting everything in caps in screaming at people.

Think real. None of this stuff your suggesting fits in USH. There's simply not enough room. The studio never planned to have a huge theme park, they built the back lot, gave tours, and things took off. You can't blame them.

From Danny Bernard
Posted July 20, 2005 at 10:55 PM
Haha I'm 14 and just cause I'm young does not mean I have to scream to have my opinions heard. Why must you incesently use things like "F*** You!" and call me out by name? All I wanted to state was that you cant possibly belive that Universal would take your ideas over say any bum on the streets of Hollywood.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 20, 2005 at 11:37 PM
Exactly Danny. He doesn't seem to get this though.

From josh revani
Posted July 21, 2005 at 5:51 PM
well w.e, i thought u guys were like 21 or something. but universal needs space for rides, but do you guys have any ideas of which ride should fit in the van helsing: fotress dracula? like a dark ride with aliens (like men in black)

From josh revani
Posted July 21, 2005 at 5:54 PM
And also, I'm sorry, I just get angry really quick, sorry. However, I thought of an idea, that Fast and the Furious 3 is coming up for thaters, how about a ride for that. Will Terminator 2:3D crash down for a Fast and the Furious ride fit?

From josh revani
Posted July 21, 2005 at 6:03 PM
O ya, Fear factor is really horrible, what do you guys think which ride should belong in the building?

From josh revani
Posted July 21, 2005 at 8:09 PM
Or Van Helsing could go for a King Kong rollercoaster. Plus Fear Factor is the worst show, so how about moving the doom fearfall ride in their and making backdraft and special effect stages together and making one big rollercoaster. Probably, the Hulk ride, or Dueling Dragons ride. Go to this website if you think its a good idea...http://www.parkfunworld.be/coasterdumois/2003/DD_layout.jpg

O ya, don't forget the Revenge of the Mummy ride, its a big disapointment. Its not even scary, but it was fun. So how about King Kong rollercoaster going in, except for Revnge of the Mummy. And Van Helsing for Land of the Dead walkthrough maze. And Back to the Future is a Universal Classic, but needs to go for The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman the ride.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 21, 2005 at 10:26 PM
It's cool dude. I really doubt that Mummy will be taken out this early in it's life. Universal wouldn't be making a smart move if they took it away. There's still people who think it will be cool and don't know it's not all it's cracked up to be. I love the idea of any Doom ride and think Backdraft is the perfect building for a new ride. Out with the old, in with the new.

As I've said before, there's simply no room in Van Helsing for an actual E-ticket ride. Maybe they should just scrap Van Helsing and use a different movie. Van Helsing sucked, and it's ride counterpart sucks. Get smart Universal.

From Josh Revani
Posted July 22, 2005 at 3:36 PM
But They should put a Land of the Dead maze, will that be scary enough to kick Van Helsing's ass?

Plus, How about taking out for the Mummy for theses rides...

1) Hulk coaster
2)King Kong Coaster (where King Kong crashes buildings, helicopters in the top, The T-Rex fighting King Kong)


Do you think Spiderman 3D ride would fit in the Back to the Future arena?

Back to the Future is a gret ride, but it is a Universal Classic and needs to go, so how about these rides...

1)The Amaxing Adventures of Spiderman THE RIDE
2) Fast and the Furious the ride(Exactly like Back to the Future)


And your right Jason...Universal has to do a better job.

From Jeffrey Torres
Posted July 22, 2005 at 4:40 PM
hey first of all u keep saying that they should take off the mummy for a hulk coaster or a king kong coaster. they will never do that because the mummy is still new and they wont build a king kong coaster because kong is already in the studio tour and backdraft is extremely small. so is special effects so no ride will fit in there. unless it is a cheap small kids ride. universal doesnt do small rides they only do big rides. and they wont build spider man in back to the future. the only place it will fit will maybe be where the mummy is. and if they build fast and the furious the ride(which i think they are going to do) they will but it in back to the future.

From Josh Revani
Posted July 22, 2005 at 7:53 PM
I go with Jeffery, they will probably put a Fast and the Furious ride in Back to the Future, but I know that a doom fearfall ride would fit in Backdraft, but how about Special Effect Stages? We should now be concentrating on the Special Effect Stages

From Josh Revani
Posted July 22, 2005 at 7:57 PM
O ya, how abot the Jurassic Park Ride, or Terminator 2:3d? These 2 attraction will soon expire. And o ya, there is a King Kong in Studio Tour, So do you guys think that Jurassic Park will might fit for a rollercoaster. and Terminator could fit for another rollercoaster? O ya, if Jurassic expires, we need another water ride. Terminator could for somewhere a dark ride.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 22, 2005 at 9:52 PM
Terminator couldn't fit a roller coaster, maybe a dark ride. We already established Mummy won't go this early. JP is a classic attraction and Back to the Future may have Fast and Furious. The F&F is all I see working. The other suggestions don't jive.

From Josh Revani
Posted July 23, 2005 at 11:13 AM
I have a Question, What happened to the Wild Wild Wild West Stunt Show? Plus, At least fix Jurassic Park, Its always the same thing, except for looking at dinosaurs and getting wet, how about innocent dinosaurs sneeze and it sneezes out water, now that would be funny and fun. Also, Jurassic Park has to scare some people, so how about where your about to go up, a dinosaur pops out and trys to scare you. Do you think that will be cool, and ya Mummy is gonna be over like in years and years, so how about fixing this coaster, like how disney fixed Space Moutain, Universal should fix the Mummy coaster, they should put some muumy ghosts around you guys, smoke, a screen where muumy warriors are trying to get you, those muumy dog warriors that pop out of you, and put SOME effects, Universal is always about their special effects, why dont they put it? At least put these and people could think that the original mummy sucks and this at least is still a good coaster. and call is "Return of the Mummy" , cause the mummy returned and their coming back to get their revenge. lol now that would be cool :) Do you think that? Plus, Terminator always show the same thing, so how about a diiferent show like a Spiderman 3d show? And Special Effect should move, put the Monster make up, I heard its really funnyand entertaining
so put it for that crappy Special Effect stages.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 23, 2005 at 11:28 AM
I like the JP suggestions and do agree that it needs a rehab. I don't want it taken away though. BTW, isn't there already a dinosaur that comes out of the ceiling while you're climbing the lift hill?

Mummy isn't going to be worked on like SM. It's new, Space Mountain had been around for years. Give Mummy a rest dude.

From Jeffrey Torres
Posted July 23, 2005 at 11:59 AM
Jurrasic park is good the way it is right now. they just need to make you get more wet then it will be good. and if they ever think of taking off jurrasic park, they will just put another water ride in the same spot. and for terminator 2:3d, i hope they never take it off. it is the best attraction there besides the studio tour. and even if they did they will never ever build a rollar coaster there. they could build a dark ride but praboaly just make another show. but i do want them to take off back to the future for fast and the furious. that would be an awsome ride.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 23, 2005 at 10:01 PM
I also like the F&F idea. BTTF is showing it's age and just isn't thrilling anymore with all the better simulators around.

From Josh Revani
Posted July 24, 2005 at 8:45 PM
So this is what we got

1. Doom ride
2. fast and the furious ride

So we are mostly doing this great, but Terminator is always the same thing, same pre-show, and same show. I dont think they have space, so they should put a show or a 3d ride (with moving seats that go up & down, left to right).

From Josh Revani
Posted July 24, 2005 at 8:55 PM
To me, the begginning of JP needs to make the people whos on the ride wet and soaked. It is boring just looking at the dinosaur, let a dinosaur sneeze on us, :) Oh ya, Fear Factor need to be fixed FAST!

From Jason Lester
Posted July 24, 2005 at 11:04 PM
I haven't been on the new Fear Factor show so I can't really comment on that. I have a season pass to USH so I hope to check it out soon just to see.

I was thinking the same thing for making JP wetter. Have dinosaurs sneeze on you or spit water at you. I know that the dinosaurs at the bottom of the lift do this, but they barely hit you with anything. Maybe on the lift have water coming down in streams from the ceiling. It adds atmosphere and raises the soak factor.

I think were on the right track.

From Jeffrey Torres
Posted July 25, 2005 at 1:13 AM
I agree that they should build fast and the furious where back to the future is but i dont think doom ride would be a good idea because the one in islands of adventure doesnt have that good of a reveiw so i dont think it is worth. but i know backdraft is really really bad but i was thinking taking off special effects and backdraft and build men in black. that would be cool and leave T2 because it is just to good. and fear factor is bad and boring and needs to be make it more exciting.

From Jason Lester
Posted July 25, 2005 at 11:21 AM
As I said I can't vouch for Fear Factor, but yes, Backdraft is bad and needs to go. That's an interesting idea about taking out the SFX Stages and putting MIB in both Backdraft and the Stages.

Since were almost at 50 should I start a seperate thread on how to improve USH?

From Josh Revani
Posted July 25, 2005 at 4:25 PM
That is a brilliant idea, but Fear Factor is always the same thing, so how about thinking of new stunts...(ex. they have to jump on cars to get flags, hold on a pole outside, and they could film this on the two screens they show.) O ya, Speical Effect Stages and Backdraft to make it to MIB is a great idea, and the idea of making the water pour you on the top during the drop is a great idea.

This is what we got

1. The making of Jurassic Park
2. MIB ride
&
3. fast and the furious ride

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