This week’s Retro 71 apparel concept is another gone-but-not-forgotten attraction from the Magic Kingdom, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. I have fond childhood memories of my dad and I hitting up this E-ticket late in the evenings while jumping back and forth from Mr. Toad. The lines were always so short . . . ah, hindsight. When the Nautilus took its last voyage back in 1994, it came as no surprise to me. I was, however, shocked to see it replaced by a simple playground. Once again, thank goodness for progress and the new Fantasyland expansion. There IS a great big beautiful tomorrow!!!
The shirt design is simple and appropriated from an attraction poster that was featured in The Art of Walt Disney World by Jeff Kurtti and Bruce Gordon. According to the Disney Park Attraction Posters blog, this particular poster was never used in the parks—it was only a mock-up and never made it off the drafting table. I can't see why, though! The poster is simply amazing in detail and complexity. It is completely hand-illustrated (because it was only a comp). I love the stylized look of the attraction name formed from coral, and how the dynamic use of implied movement conveys the flow of seaweed under the ocean. I also enjoy the custom type treatment of “Fantasyland” in the poster. How cool is that logo? It's Victorian, it's steam punk, it's sleek, and it’s Jules Verne.
The poster that was actually used in the parks was based off of Disneyland's poster, with the submarine modified to match Captain Nemo's from the movie, but when compared to the “lost” poster, I find this version a little lacking. The poster that never made the cut reminds me more of those deep-sea adventures late at night with my dad.