I’m interrupting my sizable backlog of summer’s tiki vacation posts to write about the Shag Haunted Mansion Merchandise Event at Disneyland a few weeks ago. I’ve been a fan of Josh Agle‘s for years and you can pretty much trace my love for tiki and retro style back to his art.
Rather than spend the two Benjamins or so to attend the VIP cocktail party the night before, I decided to take my chances with the masses the next morning at The Happiest Place on Earth. I’d read horror stories about the anniversary product releases for The Enchanted Tiki Room—folks standing in three hour lines to find out that most things were sold out—but I was hoping that The Mouse & Co. would get their act together, and indeed they did.
We got there a few minutes after the park opened at 8 a.m. and there was already a large line of people waiting to get in to the Disneyana store. (This was likely due to the fact that on most days of the week, guests of the Disneyland Hotel can get into the park an hour before it officially opens.)
There were tons of “cast members” keeping the line organized and passing out print-outs with photos and prices of all the merch so you could figure out what you wanted ahead of time. You then marked off what you wanted, they rang it up and then shuffled you off to another table to collect it.
We got the lunch bag (shown), postcard set, art matte of the hallway portraits, Shag-inspired Mickey ears hat and the cookie jar urn (shown), which was sold out when I checked back later that day. I thought all the items were designed quite nicely and that everything looked better in person than it did online.
Knowing I would certainly be waiting in at least one long line that day, I hadn’t really intended to get any of the stuff signed as it would involve waiting in another line! However, that queue was significantly shorter than the previous one, so we decided to give it a go.
And I’m glad I did because Shag said he liked my shirt! (A tiki-fied number I’d just gotten from the BouTiki at Disney’s Polynesian Resort.) 🙂
You can see the rest of the Shag-designed stuff for the Haunted Mansion’s 40th Anniversary here—you should definitely check out the paintings at the bottom—plus I have a few more photos after the jump!
When we were at Frankie’s Tiki Room, I was tickled to discover the “Vice Tester” with illustrations by Shag. (You might have noticed that I really dig Shag.)
And the machine revealed to me that my secret vice is…I have no vice! Ha!
Mr. Baseball on the other hand…
Well, to protect the not-so-innocent I won’t reveal his results. So, what would be your secret vice? I suggest you go to Frankie’s and find out—it will only cost you a quarter. That’s gotta be one of the best deals in Vegas! 🙂
I know this may come as a shock to some of you…but I must confess that I’m a nerd. (I’ll give you a moment to compose yourselves.) Yes, in the summer of 2007, I did indeed attend a Star Wars convention (although they prefer the term “Celebration”). It was an epic event, even just in terms of pure people-watching (see above).
One of my favorites was “The Vader Project,” an exhibit of one hundred Darth Vader helmets re-imagined, embellished and customized by artists. (The show is currently in Pittsburgh at the Andy Warhol Museum, which is fitting.) All lined up, they looked like giant Pez dispensers!
The show featured designs from folks like Tokidoki, Paul Frank, The Pizz, Amanda Visell, and… Shag!
His was entitled “Darth Tipua,” a name which calls for a little Māori mythology lesson. Lieut.-Col. Gudgeon wrote this explanation in the Journal of the Polynesian Society in 1906:
“The word ‘tipua’ may sometimes be translated by our word ‘demon,’ for it does occasionally bear that signification, but more often it would be better rendered by the expression ‘uncanny thing.’ All that is out of the common or that would be seem to possess unaccountable powers or virtues may justly be dubbed a ‘tipua’; and under this heading may be included stones, trees, or even fish—provided always that the appearance of the thing in question is sufficiently curious.”
Sounds vaguely Vader-ish.
I think the shell necklace was an especially nice touch. It makes it look like Vader just came back from doing some souvenir shopping at Hilo Hattie’s.
More interesting, thought-provoking and truly terrifying Darth Vader helmets after the jump!