ThrillRide! Special Features


Busch Gardens Williamsburg, Six Flags Great Adventure and Kings Dominion Trip Report
Sept. 6, 2010

After the swell day at BGW, we started the seven-hour drive north to Great Adventure, as the consensus was we needed to ride El Toro, as none of us had yet. Got into town very late, but still managed to get to the Safari by the 9:00 opening.

I didn't take any pictures of the animals, but there was this cool party/activity center or whatever. And the Safari really is awesome. I'd forgotten how big it was and how many types of critters there are. All the bitchen ones, that's for sure.

That area gives you a great backside view of Kingda Ka. Which we had every intention of hitting not long after the theme park's opening at 10:00.

Friday was much more pleasant, weather-wise, with blue skies and bright sun. Way hotter, and the crowds got pretty thick. But we still managed to ride just about everything on our agenda.

Another sad sight: the rapidly disappearing bits and pieces of the Great American Scream Machine.

How much more Arrow steel must fall before the madness ends?

Again with the sniffing... See you on the other side, Scream, The Great American Machine.

Surreal. Sad and surreal. Oh, well. Chang, or whatever it's going to be called, is hardly a poor consolation prize.

One real highlight, we all agreed, was The Dark Knight. Maybe it's cuz we had really low expectations, given all the crap that's been hurled at this ride, but it's really fun. Granted, if you're going to base a ride on one of the most kick-ass action movies from the last few years (and the best Batman movie ever made), you should probably do more than dress up a Wild Mouse and put it in a box. That said, Six Flags did a far better job with the theming than I think it gets credit for.

The pre-show is really well done. They spent some money here.

I like subway maps.

Mad props to Aaron Eckhart for reprising his role as the pre-defaced Harvey Dent.

Hey, my peeps! Darrell is digging the pre-show. That's Deanna in the middle, and Doug on the right.

Cool cars! Honestly, check this one out.

Bizarro was looking really rad in its new color scheme but the wait was an appalling two hours. Pass.

A little shout-out to its earlier incarnation. See, it's all bizarro now. (I love me some Medusa, but that really was one of the weirdest themes for a "Wild West" section.)

I'm not enough of a comic-book fan to really get into this. Sue me.

The King. Still a bit twitchier than Top Thrill Dragster. But holy cow, that view from the top cannot be beat.

The Parachute Drop's been dressed up different since my last visit, too. Nice.

We also hoped to ride the Runaway Train, but the poor guy got borked late in the day and we missed our shot. Oh, and that thing on the left? We'll get to that in a minute.

I am SO HAPPY that Houdini's Great Escape is back in what appears to be regular operation. This is very, very high on my list of non-coaster rides, and not only because it is so rare. My compadres had never been on and had no idea what to expect. It was great to share this with them.

Hey, Six Flags, build more of these, would you please?! Also, turn up the volume during the pre-show and force the damned kids to shut their gobs...




© Robert Coker
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