Way back when Disneyland opened and later Walt Disney World in the 1970's, the way guests experienced attractions was to take tickets from their coupon book to experience whatever attraction they wanted up until 1982. Attractions were grouped from A through E, with E-ticket attractions being the super-headliner attractions and A ticket attractions being not as popular, with B, C and D in the middle. This ticket system has since been replaced with the ability for park guests to ride any ride they wish in the parks without worrying about separate admission. What if we were to transport Hollywood Studios back in time and assign the attractions to the old ticket system? Which attractions would be measly A or B ticket attractions and which would be exclusive E-ticket attractions? Let's examine today's attractions to see how they rank.
It's probably easiest to start at the top and work our way down, and that means with the E-Ticket attractions. E-ticket attractions are the supreme attractions in the park that are for the newest and/or most popular attractions. Without a doubt, the Tower of Terror and Rock 'n Roller Coaster are embodiments of what an E-Ticket attraction is. They are incredibly popular attractions that are signature attractions for Hollywood Studios and among the most popular. There's little doubt or argument among these two, so we'll move on.
The real question for me is if Toy Story Midway Mania is an E-ticket attraction. When it was announced and designed, I don't think Disney Imagineers envisioned Toy Story Midway Mania to be an E-ticket attraction. While the scope of the attraction was a family friendly ride, it largely was a surprise just how popular the ride has become. So if I were constructing this list in April or May of 2008, I'd have told you it was a D-ticket attraction. However, the crowds it has generated would have forced Disney to move it to become an E-ticket attraction so let's throw it in there as well.
Speaking of D-ticket attractions, when we are talking of attractions of this caliber, we are talking about attractions that are headliner attractions, but are just one step down from an E-ticket. They are certainly popular attractions, but not the most popular attractions in the park. The Great Movie Ride, American Idol Experience, Star Tours, Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show and Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular. Some are older attractions without the ability to pull guests in anymore like they used to while Lights, Motors, Action is by no means a top-tier attraction. They are all popular enough in their own right and bring guests in, but they fall just shy of being E-ticket attractions.
Next on the list are the C-ticket attractions. To give you an idea of what a C-ticket attraction is (or was), The Mad Tea Party and Dumbo were both C-ticket attractions. I feel like many of the stage shows will fall into this category. To start off with, Muppetvision 3D would be the perfect C-ticket attraction in my opinion. Large capacity, not as popular as D or E-ticket attractions but yet not something overlooked, as we'll see with the A and B ticket attractions. While we're at it, I'm going to add the Magic of Disney Animation and Backlot Tour as C-ticket attractions. Due to the cutbacks with both of these attractions over the years, I feel they have slid down to this level, whereas 10-20 years ago, they would have been closer to D-ticket level. To be honest, I could make an argument for B-level for Backlot Tour, but I think I'd be giving into some personal opinions more than trying to remain objective. Let's also include Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Playhouse Disney-Live on Stage and Beauty and the Beast in this category.
When it comes to B-level tickets, now we're looking at the least popular attractions that aren't quite distractions, but still have some value. Basically, we ask if they are A-level tickets and if not, place them here. Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Play Area is really the sort of attraction I think about when we're talking B-ticket attractions. If it were open, I'd add Sounds Dangerous to this list as well. Journey into Narnia will be on this list as well.
There are two obvious A-ticket attractions, the Streets of America and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame because frankly they are among the least popular attractions out there and the ones that you would least want to see. Keep in mind that back in the days of this ticket system, guests would have the most tickets given to them for A and B level ticket attractions as Disney didn't mind guests spending time there because they had a large capacity with little demand. I'm going to add another attraction to the A-level and it's not for any of the reasons I just listed. Walt Disney: One Man's Dream is an A-ticket attraction not because it's a distraction or because no one wants to see it. Quite the opposite really, as it's a great tribute to Walt that does bring guests in. I think One Man's Dream is an A-ticket attraction because I would think Imagineers would want as many people as possible to learn about Walt as possible and by making it an A-ticket attraction, it would give guests the most potential to do so. In addition, if it were ranked honestly, then I'd peg it as a C-level attraction but I think guests, if given the option of how to use their C-tickets, would opt for other attractions over the tribute, and it's another reason to make One Man's Dream an A-ticket to ensure no one misses this fitting tribute.
So there you have it, all of the attractions in Disney's Hollywood Studios ranked for a ticket system that hasn't been used in almost 30 years. This is the sort of geeky thing I sometimes ponder while waiting in a line to ride one of these attractions and I'm curious what you might think as well. Agree with me? Or more likely, disagree? How about my assessment of One Man's Dream? Share your thoughts in the comments (and if you don't, I'm going to assume everyone thinks I'm right and a genius!).