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Disney Plans to Change Pirates of the Caribbean Ride

After multiple complaints, Disney resorts to altering scenes on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride.

Cinderella's Castle in Disney World in Orlando

Jessica Poley

Cinderella's Castle in Disney World in Orlando

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Walt Disney World has always been known as “the happiest place on earth,” and has been entangled with very little controversy. Serious complaints at Disney are rare, for the park works hard to ensure the comfort of their guests. However, this recently changed due to various concerns with a scene from Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean ride.

The ride contains a scene that involves the pirates auctioning women off. This section of Pirates of the Caribbean has a banner that says “Auction—Take a Wench for a Bride.” There are four women roped together along with a redheaded woman standing nearby. The auction includes voiceovers of the pirates naming prices for the women, and eventually resorting to choosing specific women they want with voiceovers such as “We want the redhead.” Although this ride depicts scenes in historical ways and shows the pirates as the corrupt people they were, there have still been numerous complaints about this specific scene. Many people have said that this portion of the ride objectifies women and has caused them to feel uncomfortable.

These complaints have caused Disney to develop plans to change this scene in 2018. Starting with Disneyland Paris in July 2018, the auction scene will officially say “Auction, Surrender Yer Loot,” and include both men and women auctioning off their unwanted belongings such as jewelry. This auction will still include the redheaded woman; however, she will be leading the auction and the voiceover about her will be removed. The same changes will be made for the Pirates of the Caribbean rides in Disney World Orlando as well as Disneyland in Anaheim later on in 2018.

This change to Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean ride has not been the first resulting from various complaints about the ride. There was a scene involving women being chased by the pirates that had to be changed to women holding food in their hands in 1997, in order to make it seem like the pirates were chasing the food. Changes like these should not have to be made, for this simply shields the public from true history. A recent Disney guest, Lizzy Evagelacopoulos shared her opinion on the issue saying, “It’s our history and it is a part of us. The scene allows us to see how much we have progressed since then. We can’t just forget where we started.”

The changes that are being made to the Pirates of the Caribbean ride involve censorship that is unnecessary because it is already known that pirates were not good people. Those who go on this ride have most likely seen the movies; therefore, they should expect the scenes in the ride to stay true to the films’ portrayal of the pirates. In order to prevent the issues that guests are having with the ride, Disney could place warning signs that state that there are controversial topics based on historical references. Because of these signs, the people could go to Guest Services for more information, and this would prevent the numerous complaints about the scenes on Pirates of the Caribbean. This ride has been an attraction at Disney for over 50 years, and the changes that are being made are simply a step in the wrong direction for both the parks and history.

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Disney Plans to Change Pirates of the Caribbean Ride