Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Eating with Shamu

I just flew in from Orlando and boy are my arms tired!

Get it?

Whoo hoo! I flew! Arm pain!

Wocka wocka!

Before I started my flight I saw a billboard for an amazing talk station:
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Bin Laden in the morning, Kim Jong Il mid-days and Saddam Hussien drives you home.

But I didn't fly all the way to Orlando JUST to look at billboards. No, not this time.

This time I went to Sea World.

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At Sea World I attended the "Breakfast with Shamu and Crew" at the Seafire Inn.

At the door you see posters advertising an appearance by Jacques Feudelemer. I overheard another tourist say his last name is French for "full of crap." Can any one verify this?


Was it Jacques? Or the tourist?

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Here is one of the stars of the show. He's a penguin. I asked him if he was in March of the Penguins and he pretended to march. Then I asked him if he was in Madagascar and he laughed. Then I asked if he was in the film The Pebble and the Penguin and he punched me in the ribs.

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The show starts just a few minutes after breakfast is served so there wasn't much time to get food if you wanted to catch the whole show. This was a buffet, but not a self-serve buffet. Servers stood on the other side of the glass and prepared your plate.

Service was slow and many people were waiting in line long after the show had started.

I didn't really mind because I was hiding from that penguin.

Sadly, once I got it, the food wasn't very good.

The show starred "Team Seafire" which consisted of Shamu and 4 or 5 of his friends.

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I posed for a picture with this dolphin. Dolphins are amazingly smart. This one slipped me her phone number.

The show also starred Jacques:

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Yes, he has a mullet, but remember, this is Florida.

The show was a whole lot of fun. Jacques stood on stage and the characters stood in the audience for most of the show.

On the stage, a screen played video clips and featured other characters interacting with Jacques.

The basic plot was:

Jacques is scarred of the water after losing a friend at Sea... World. (And you though MY jokes were lame!) His friends are trying to encourage him to get back in the water, because if he doesn't they lose their charter.

I was more worried for this bird who looked like he was suffering from the bird flu.
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The plot was really incidental, however. Really, the show consisted of jokes and songs and lots of audience interaction.

By "audience interaction" I mean lots of women stuffing pancakes in their face and saying to their husbands "Oh god I hope he doesn't try and talk to ME!"

I vaguely remember Shamu doing a monologue about the war in Afghanistan, but I do have a habit of "zoning out" at theses things.
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The actor that played Jacques was very, very funny.

There was a family there with a kid that was celebrating his birthday. However, he was terrified of Jacques. Every time he came within ten feet of him, he cried.

So, he sang "Happy Birthday" from across the restaurant with his back to the kid and (in his words) "a much more handsome" customer lip-sync the song.

O.K., the little boy was me. And, I wouldn't really say I was "scared" as much I was "disturbed" by him.

And yes, that other dude was handsome.

After the show is over you get a final photo-op with almost THE ENTIRE CAST:

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Overall, the show was great but the food was below average. It certainly is aimed at kids, but as they say "you are only young once, but you can be immature forever."

However, they also say not to lick pennies and that is sooo much fun!


  1. Gotta run, Jong Il is doing some "wacky prank calls" on AM 580!

  2. Anonymous6/14/2006

    First of all, this show fails mainly due to the 3D effects 'cause they wanna be more than they're. Sometimes, they look laughable, but the physical effects are awesome (the great great white). I appreciate this show 'cause this is my childhood. I saw and recorded it on TV, and I grew with the characters, my right heroes!!!. I grew up in the 1960's and the NBC television show "Flipper" was my favorite childhood show.

    I feel Elijah Wood is the best actor of our time. With respect to Luke Halpin I feel Elijah Wood has more of a range of acting talent and emotes more as an actor which makes his performance excellent and more believable. I think Elijah Wood is the best young actor working today in films. However, I hate the way they treat Elvis, especially Jesse that treats him so badly. He's always screaming at him. That's a bad example. Even Glen and Annie don't treat Elvis very well, but the worst in that is Jessie.

    The plot outline is about that fact that the oceans during the late 1860-92s are no longer safe; many ships have been lost. Sailors have returned to port with stories of a vicious narwhal (a giant whale with a long horn) which sinks their ships. A naturalist, Professor (Pierre) Aronnax, his assistant, Conseil, and a professional whaler, Ned Land, join an US expedition which attempts to unravel the mystery. The show sets out with a 12 year old kid out with his mates and doing naughty things, the young boy named Jesse is arrested as he caused vandalism in the sea life center and putting graffiti on the glass windows where the while can be viewed from.

    Now, I'm conscious about the shows factual mistakes, but, for a third installment, the result isn’t so bad. The plot couldn't innovate the genre, but the idea of a baby shark and his angry mother is... so childish and imaginative. Otherwise the idea of a shark attack in an aquatic park is fabulous. I think that if they did this show without the 3D effect it looked better. Sometimes, the scales don't agree, and the "lake" looks deeper than it is, for example. The ending, with the mother breaking the control room's glass is... funny (and ridiculous) ...

    This show is far for being the worst of the series. I originally saw this show on my birthday, May 31st of 1996. It meant a lot to me. I have it on numerous video versions. The VHS versions are in "pan and scan". The laserdisc version is "letterboxed" 2.35:1! I even have a VCD in 2.35:1 from Hong Kong which is "letterboxed". But my most prized possession is an "original" 16mm theatrical feature print which I will treasure for the rest of my life! It’s clearly weaker than the first ones, but...worthy and entertaining. If the effects weren't 3D, the movie was totally fabulous. But, furthermore there was the 80s. It doesn't look so bad for being 80s. Isn't it? Great acting by a beautifully trained seal (how do they do it?) based on a true story. One more animal movie for children and families, but with a twist. The interaction of seal and humans is heart warming. Prepare for a lump in the throat with a happy/sad ending.

    Universal Studios has a similar show that is a great heartwarming show for the entire family with good values and sentimentality. As much as I liked the NBC television show and MGM theatrical feature films with Luke Halpin as Sandy in the 1960's I liked this feature the best! Another very nice thing is that Mr. Shapiro gave the "original" Sandy Ricks (Luke Halpin) a small part in this remake. He portrayed Bounty Fisherman #3 in this film. This was a very kind gesture on Mr. Shapiro's part! Thank you Mr. Shapiro, Elijah Wood, Paul Hogan and everyone involved for making this a memorable show for me to enjoy!

    This show is more realistic than the first one, showing sea animals’ lives and problems. It's not just that. It is also more "familiar" and has some romance, besides the obvious adventure, comedy and some drama. We can also see many more orcas; however, none of this makes it better than the first one. The first one is the best of the trilogy.

    Now it's just getting dumb. We get it now, hunting animals is wrong, whales are majestic and all that jazz etc. How many times is this whale going to get caught? Honestly, this made me almost scream out natural selection buddy too bad! Because this whale apparently doesn't know a net from the hole on his head.

    In all fairness, for a 3rd installment this wasn't terrible. It is just nothing new at all. For kids or for perhaps a "family night" (that is desperately out of ideas) this movie will suffice.

  3. Anonymous6/14/2006

    Hey Bomb, Thanks for the props. Peace Out.

  4. Nice to see a new post. I was starting to go through junk withdrawl.

    I wonder if any kids were sad it wasn't with the real Shamu? Nothing would beat trying to eat your pancakes while a large whale is flinging water at you. Soggolicious.

  5. Sorry for the lack of posts I was flying to Orlando. Get it?

    Oh wait, and boy were my arms tired. Get it?

  6. I don't get it. Did you have to win an arm wrestling competition before they'd let you have your bag of peanuts?

    Wait, now I understand. There were no posts because your arms were tired. I was confused by the mention of Orlando.