Doesn’t it feel like everyone is raging around the internet screaming I hate Disney to every possible person that will listen? These days, it feels like articles and YouTube comments are full of Disney haters, as people are always threatening to boycott the House of Mouse.
Well, if you’re a little confused by this vitriol, and are curious to know why it seems so many people are in a tizzy over Disney (and Disney World), I’m going to break down five reasons people are viciously upset at the Disney brand.
Disney Is Taking Over the World
Okay, perhaps that’s a bit of an exaggeration. But Disney is certainly more popular now than it’s ever been, thanks to the global expansion of the Disney parks and the continued growth of Disney+.
This leads people into believing Disney is steamrolling over the entertainment business. And you know what—they’re not entirely wrong. Because as much as someone might love Disney, I think we can all agree that competition in the marketplace is a good thing. You never want to have a situation where one or two companies own a majority of the entertainment industry.
More competition means better consumer choice and prices. So yes, while it’s going to be awesome to see Deadpool running around with Wolverine in “Deadpool 3,” you have to wonder—at what cost to consumers and the overall competitive marketplace do the ends justify the means?
Disney Is Too Woke or Too Political
Listen, I can’t stand it as much as the next person—the idea that everything you dislike is distilled into a silly, dismissive comment such as “go woke, go broke.” Ugh. These comments are lacking in critical thought and analysis.
At this point, throwing around “woke” in a disparaging fashion is intellectually lazy and, at worst, the modern way to disparage people that appear different.
Still, I’m of the mindset that two things can be true at the same time. While I believe those that have taken the word “woke” and distorted it to “fight back” against the Disney brand, I can also acknowledge that those that are angry at Disney for their political stance or “agenda” aren’t completely wrong.
The fact is, most people that are upset, or have even gone as far as to boycott Disney, believe Disney is intentionally altering its stories or characters in order to reach a more diverse audience.
Whether it’s a gay kiss in the movie “Lightyear,” or the focus on racial inequality on the show “Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” people are upset that they can’t watch their favorite escapist entertainment without an “agenda” being thrown into it.
Here’s the problem: agenda’s have always existed in entertainment, and certainly politics has always been at the heart of superhero stories for ages.
Captain America punched Hitler on the cover of a 1941 Marvel comic.
Batman, Superman and Black Panther fought Ku Klux Klan members.
And the very first first X-Men film from 2000 features scenes from a Nazi concentration camp, for crying out loud.
This is not new.
Admittedly, some people are mad at Disney because they believe it’s not the political agenda that bothers them, but how it’s being implemented. Shows like “She-Hulk” intentionally trolled toxic fans on the internet, and even I’d admit that the way those writers went about it was a bit juvenile.
Too Many (Mediocre) Disney Properties
Who would’ve guessed that, when we all first witnessed “The Avengers” hit the big screen in 2012, that over a decade later people would be complaining that there’s too much Disney and Marvel content?
Well, if you’re a superhero fan, that’s kind of the reality we’re living in.
A decade ago, you’d be lucky to get two Marvel movies a year. Now, it’s not a surprise to see two Marvel movies hit theaters within six months—along with a three additional TV shows to round out the year.
Tack on some Star Wars shows for good measure, and it becomes a situation where there’s too much content to watch—and all of it is NOT high quality.
Much of Phase 4 of Marvel felt like a lab experiment, where things were being thrown at the wall to see what sticks. If all of these stories weren’t (to varying degrees) connected, I think people would be less disappointed. But when you feel obligated to watch mediocrity because you love the Disney and Marvel brand, it wears you down a bit, and your levels of disappointment and frustration begin to elevate.
Terrible Changes at Disney World and Disneyland
Let’s move over to the theme parks, which is a big piece of Disney’s overall business. And sadly, there’s a lot to not like here—so much so that you begin to realize why so many fights at Disney World seem to be occurring.
Many changes to Disney World over the years have taken a lot of the fun out of the parks—and money out of your pockets. From major perks Disney guests used to receive for free that are no longer complimentary or available (like the Magical Express, for example) to the entire nickel and diming ride reservation system known as Disney Genie+, it’s no wonder that people are less joyful when it comes to how they perceive the Disney brand.
I Hate Disney Because It’s Too Expensive
At the end end of the day, a person is going to be much more inclined to hate on Disney World when they can’t afford to visit the parks. But, I’d argue you’re going to get just as many angry letters and social media rants when people can afford it, but know they are getting far less for their money.
Everyone knows that Disney prices increase—it kind of comes with the territory of being a fan of Disneyland or Disney World. But people are less inclined to complain about price increases if they can clearly see that the park is investing in exciting activities and fan experiences.
But is Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway really an improvement over The Great Movie Ride? Of course not. Does it really make sense thematically for a Guardians of the Galaxy attraction to reside inside Epcot? No, it doesn’t.
These days, Disney just seems to be lacking a strong focus and passion for innovation. Instead, they opt to spend their time taking away the spontaneity of visiting Disney World and requiring you to be glued to your phone to make reservations instead of living in the moment during your $5,000 vacation.
It’s enough to make you hate Disney. And sadly, there are a lot of people that do.
People Hate on ‘Disney Adults’
I wanted to throw in one quick Honorable Mention regarding why people have such a hate for Disney, and that relates to the countless number of adults that love Disney.
Now, of course Disney is aimed at families, but that doesn’t stop adults from loving Disney World too. Frankly, if you’re a Disney fan and a grown-up, I salute you. You are young at heart and probably have a brighter and cheerier spirit than most people.
But many people have a foul disposition. They’ve been beaten down by life, and misery loves company. At the end of the day, miserable people don’t tend to enjoy seeing other people that are happy. And for Disney World and Disneyland fans, happiness tends to occur at The Happiest Place on Earth.
So, whether people refer to “Disney Adults” as juvenile or overgrown kids suffering from arrested development, there’s always going to be endless amount of people who can’t stand Disney because so much of Disney’s fanbase are adults.
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