Disney is one of the shadiest companies when it comes to the abandonment of their parks and rides. From the Skyway, which had stations that were left abandoned for a dozen years to two entire theme parks: an island and their first water park (River Country). Many Urban Explorers have explored a few of these, mainly River Country and Body Wars, a ride within the semi-abandoned Wonders of Life. But none of these YouTubers have gone to the caliber that Urban Explorer MattSonswa has gone to. In his first couple months of documenting abandoned Disney rides and parks, he has become the first person in ten plus years to explore Discovery Island, and one of the first people ever to explore Cranium Command, as well as documenting parts of River Country that few others have accessed. This post is mainly to give him some recognition and to promote his channel, because he has been able to do things others couldn’t dream of.
The first time he uploaded a video on YouTube was about a month ago. It was a video about River Country, even though he called it River Country Island (Which doesn’t exist). It was just a normal River Country exploration with about an average quality. His second video was amazing: He and a friend took a raft out to Discovery Island and got some really crappy footage of it. I analyzed this footage (You can see that post here: https://thedisneyjournal.com/2017/05/10/disneys-discovery-island-new-footage-from-inside-analysis/). But, no one had seen the island for over a decade, and it was astonishing that someone went out there. But, after getting some tips from BrightSunFilms, he went back to the island and got better footage. He got in AGAIN. No one went to the island for ten years and he goes twice in a week. The Millennial within me just keeps shouting “I can’t even” at the thought that he got in twice.
He then went back to River Country to get better and very interesting footage, including him going down the slide and getting up close to the slides and rockwork.
The next UrbEx of note that he released was an exploration of the Wonders of Life, which included Body Wars and Cranium Command. I plan on analyzing the Cranium Command video, but until then here are the links to the videos:
I believe he went back a second time to get better footage of these too, and these links are to the new footage.
Matt gets into these places with such ease that I don’t know how others haven’t explored these places sooner. He’s either really clever or just really dumb. And the best thing is that he hasn’t been caught by Disney security. He was escorted out of Wonders of Life, but that’s because he ventured into a CM filled area called the Metlife VIP Lounge. I’m excited and also a little scared to see what abandoned thing he explores next, be it ImageWorks, the Millennium Celebration pavilion, Discovery Island again, or something completely different.
Click HERE to visit his channel. Click HERE to visit his Twitter.
I really want one of those Do Not Destroy tags for some reason. I don’t know what I’d do with it, but I find its’ existence to be funny. Moral of the story: I want to have a collection of stuff from abandoned places (I’ve got a DI brochure/ticket, and a sign from Begin Oaks. Need a logo from Four Seasons Mall and Brookdale Mall. I’ll just steal some dirt from River Country)