Defined as “mimesis that changes a person’s way of knowing, and by extension, their way of being.” (p7 Kara Reilly)
A typical way for individual’s to most powerfully experience mimesis is through spectacle. Some well-known examples are Chuck E Cheese and Most Disney rides. This is where my life comes in.
As I have told many people, I grew up in Orlando, Florida, a mere 25-30 minutes away from the most magical place on earth…depending on the traffic. A good few individuals down in Orlando know at least one person that has or does work at a Disney park, and because of this, it is incredibly easy to get into a park if you know someone on the inside. Cut to family friend that worked at Animal kingdom. While being a Florida resident does make park tickets cheaper, knowing someone that can just sneak you behind the rainforest café and slip you inside helps, too. She worked with the Rhinos and was, all in all, a very cool individual.
While the magic kingdom is the park with the most animatronics focused rides, animal kingdom has a number of them as well including “Its Tough to be a Bug.” This isn’t a ride, but more of a show, much like the laugh floor in the Magic Kingdom. In this, the cast of A Bug’s Life give you a number of giggles and thrills, including spiders raining from above and mosquitoes attempting to spear you from behind. Because I was so young and didn’t understand that it was fake, this form of mimesis has ultimately given me a deep fear of spiders.
On a more positive note, many of the rides were rather run and highly inspirational. For example…
Many of the older rides are steeped in semi-realistically displayed animatronics.
Walt Disney presented the audio animatronic of Lincoln at the 1964 worlds fair in New York, demonstrating an act of patriotism which is a lens to which we can see Disney’s version of reality. The park itself is an idealistic reality, crafted by many, but inspired by the man himself. Because of the spectacle, it has shaped an altered many individual’s ideas of how their realities are perceived at a young age.
Today, audio animatronics are still used, but instead driven by electronic motors to create smoother and more life-like motions to further immerse the audience into the deception.