Disney Did No Wrong in Assault Case

Here’s the background. This kid “allegedly,” of course, has CP and is autistic. At 2:30, Darth Maul comes along the route. What happens is history as far as his dad is concerned. You can click through to see the comments on the YouTube page if you want. Below is my take on it, and I’m interested in your view of the event.

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Watch the kid at the beginning. He walks right up to one of the parade members and is greeted warmly, thus making him think that this behavior is appropriate. It is NOT appropriate for any child to walk into a parade route. EVER. It’s dangerous and someone, heaven forbid it be his parents, should have stopped that immediately as if he was running into the street. Hey, that sort of looks like a street, doesn’t it? Dad, maybe you should shut up and stop filming the parade and reign your son in before he gets himself killed now or later in a real street.

So, Darth Maul approaches. What does the kid do? He runs straight at him with his arms up in what could easily be perceived as an attack on Darth Maul. The actor was simply protecting himself. He doesn’t know the kid’s mentally handicapped. That push off to the side (where he belongs) was very appropriate of someone being potentially attacked.

Maybe you should hang a sign around your kid’s neck that says,

“My kid’s got issues related to autism. He won’t attack (even though it looks like he might). Please discipline him calmly and gently in my absence from his development.” – His dad

If the Florida Attorney General ever sees this case, he needs to throw it out and fine the parent for lack of parenting. Hopefully, since this video has been around since last June, it’s already run its course.

Reviewing The Best of Broadway: The Lion King

The Lion King Broadway BillCue one of the spine-tingling-est songs of all time, add a huge stage with the coolest man-made sunrise known, and then toss in the most innovative animal costumes ever made, and you have the most captivating opening to any Broadway musical out there. From the opening note, The Lion King delivered everything that the banners, billboards, and posters hyped it up to be.

It is opening weekend of The Lion King and they will be in Tampa until May 22. Our seats were fantastic: right on the isle of the center section in the 10th row. That placed us spot-on level with the stage so that we couldn’t see the stage surface, but we weren’t missing the performers’ ankles, either.

The show brings a new appreciation for the talent that the performers have to sing, dance, and act in all of the crazy costumes they had. The ensemble had about 25 costume changes by my estimate, and some of them were quite elaborate. It was not your typical Broadway musical where the ensemble remains relatively human and does a quick change. We are talking about changing from a hyena to a lioness to a piece of savannah grassland, complete with makeup changes. Truly, though, words cannot describe the coolness of Mufasa’s and Scar’s lion faces and the way they could drop down in front of their face to create a very effective lion appearance.

If you have seen the movie as many times as most, the lines are right from the movie, with the exception of some live audience flair, such as the stage curtain looking “like a shower curtain from Target,” as Zazu so comically pointed out. As long as children can sit through the animated movie, they will have no problem being enthralled with Broadway’s interpretation, and this is an excellent opportunity to expose them to the arts in an attractive and entertaining activity. The running time is about 2 1/2 hours with a 20-minute intermission.

Don’t let this gem leave town without experiencing the Best of Broadway!