Ok, time for the best part of the new Festival parade at WDW: the giant fire-breathing steampunk dragon!!
But first, a few fairies:
Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather come gliding out on special Segways hidden under their skirts. I love their new costumes; the cascading ombré effect is just lovely. Plus, check out those hats!
Prince Philip comes striding out directly behind them:
::Dramatic cape flip::
Philip starts out by battling these thorny stilt-walkers:
These costumes are a really cool way to bring Philip's battle through the thorns to life.
And once he's "vanquished" all the Thornies, iiiiit's SHOWTIME!
I'm not very happy with these shots, so here's a more dramatic one from Main Street:
And I promised you a little fire action, didn't I?
This also gives you a nice idea of the dragon's massive scale.
("Scale." Heh. Aheh. Heh.)
The dragon's legs move with the wheels, giving the impression that it's walking, and the massive neck and head have an impressive range of motion.
It's impossible to not feel a sense of awe as the dragon rolls past you, spouting flames:
Inside the dragon's belly is a thorn-encrusted spinning wheel; another fantastic nod to Sleeping Beauty's storyline:
Also inside the belly are a set of riveted metal doors, complete with gauges and piping reminiscent of an old industrial furnace:
I want to go to there.
The closer you get to the dragon, the more impressive she is. Every rivet, gear, and chunk of plated "skin" is exquisitely detailed:
I've read that all the parade floats (and many of the street characters!) have at least one hidden Mickey on them, btw, and that Maleficent's is on one of her back legs. Considering how big the floats are and how quickly they fly past you, though, finding them all is going to be a challenge!
Bringing up the rear of the Maleficent segment are more of my favorite costumes: these abstract ravens:
The filigree masks are gorgeous, but the real showstoppers - if you can believe it - are their boots:
See the talons? The boots are stylized bird feet!
Ok, pick that jaw up off the desk, folks, 'cuz we're not done yet!
Here comes the whole gang!
I know I keep going on about the costumes, but that Dopey-riding-Happy's-shoulders costume is GENIUS. The performer really works it, too, frequently looking down so the two dwarves appear to be making eye contact:
After the street load of characters from Snow White, Alice, and Pinocchio, come these fabulous Balloon costumes:
Apparently they sometimes arrange the balloons in their back bows into a hidden Mickey, but I didn't see one this time.
Love this pose:
These ladies have perfected the art of the sassy flounce, and I love it.
Next, the second massive float brought over from Tokyo DL: a three-parter celebrating Pinocchio, Dumbo, and Fantasia.
The little Ferris Wheel and swing set spin, along with the wind-up key in the side of the whale.
If you look closely (or click to embiggen) you can also see all the bubbles Dumbo is blowing. :)
You have to turn around to see Dumbo properly, since he's riding on the tail end (literally! Ha!) of the first whale section:
Donald and Daisy are in the middle float:
Everything about these circus tent dresses is pure fabulousness, right down to the swirly ribbon wigs:
Which brings us to the big finale float!
Hot air balloon!! Woot!
Like everything here, it's beautifully detailed. Look at the roof section over Mickey & Minnie:
One last view as the parade leaves us behind:
And two more from Main Street:
Hope you guys enjoyed all the eye candy! I'd be embarrassed to tell you how long I've spent editing all these photos, but the truth is, I had a blast doing it. :)
Congrats to Rose Dolphin, this month's art give-away winner! Please e-mail me your mailing address, Rose, along with your choice of prize from my Pinterest give-away board!