Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Sabrina's Brochure Spotlight: Six Flags Magic Mountain 2008

Opening day is fast approaching for all the seasonal parks across the States, and two of those parks are set to debut "new old" roller coasters which have been transformed into total multisensory experiences. I'm referring, of course, to Medusa at Six Flags Great Adventure and Superman: Ride of Steel at Six Flags New England. But let's not forget about the facelift project that started it all: The transformation of Six Flags Magic Mountain's X into X2, which occurred just one short year ago.

"New"? Kinda. New trains, new colors, and new effects maybe, but the ride itself has remained unchanged. Nevertheless, this makeover made sense. Given the shoddy reputation for downtime and repairs that the original X had earned during its brief life, Six Flags was wise to replace what was perhaps the most troublesome component--the trains--and re-market this engineering marvel as the first "5th dimensional" roller coaster. After all the money they had dumped--er, invested--in it, you have to give them credit for making one final attempt to breathe new life into this coaster.

As for this year's round of Six Flags coaster transformations, one can only surmise that the company is doing what it can to give the thrill-loving public something new in spite of a bad economy and the company's financial woes. I get that, and I give them credit for trying. At least the Medusa transformation makes sense, as this coaster's previous so-called theming was confusing at best and could even be likened to an identity crisis. I mean, "Medusa Mining Company"? HUH? Superman, on the other hand... Sorry Six Flags, but color me baffled! Why fix something that was never broken? Surely there were other coasters more worthy of a makeover than this one.

But I digress. And when I say I digress, wow I really digressed! I must be subconsciously overcompensating for the lack of pages in this brochure. Back on topic we go.

X(2) was more fortunate than its brethren Psyclone and Flashback, which bit the figurative and literal dust in 2006 and 2007, respectively. While I never enjoy seeing a coaster (or any other type of ride, for that matter) meet its demise, the good news is that Six Flags seems to be heading in the right direction at Magic Mountain: Quality over quantity. That being said, with the addition of Terminator Salvation in 2009 and another rumored coaster project in the works for 2010, they just may be able to strike the right balance and achieve both!

The truly "new" addition to Magic Mountain in 2008 was Thomas Town, a family friendly children's area featuring--who else?--Thomas The Tank Engine. This was another positive move by Six Flags, as Magic Mountain has long been viewed as an unbalanced park in the thrills-versus-family department. (Not very Griswold-esque, if you will.) It would be nice to see this park add even more family attractions and some good flat rides over the next few years.

I guess there's hardly a need to include an operating schedule in the brochure when you're open year-round. I will, however, take issue with their "Minutes North of Hollywood" claim. In what universe?! Technically speaking, I guess it is a true statement. It simply would be truer if they added the word "Many" at the beginning.

Geez, I feel like I'm cheating you out of content when the brochures are this short! But as they say, "it is what it is". I can only hope that my colorful commentary has helped to fill the inevitable void in your lives...