"Chessington Zoo NEW DARK RIDE" wrote:
CHESSINGTON DARK RIDE
Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls, while you are queuing for this delightful ride, I would like to assure you that there is nothing to be worried about ... absolutely nothing at all. Rumours that may have leaked out to the effect that there is a terrifying computer-created monster hiding out in the complex building, to which our passengers are being sacrificed, are completely fanciful, highly exaggerated and probably not even true.
Nothing nasty has been created in the area ride at all. And it certainly isn't eating visitors. Absolutely not.
In reality the ride is a little trip into a computer where jolly, fun, adventures happen. Its all rather innocent - almost boring, and under no circumstances would the management of Chessington be prepared to allow its paying customers to be eaten by any giant green slavering alien form, with laser beam eyes and razor teeth, even if we were all scared witless by it, which we aren't because it doesn't exist. So no need to worry on that score. Nor will you be killed by robots. Other things you don't need to worry about are this noise -
... which has been dealt with and won't be troubling anybody any more.
(even worse and longer terrible roar)
Just ignore it.
Now I want you all to look at the floor, or each other for there is nothing to see on all the TV monitors whatsoever.
These TV monitors have nothing to do with our ride and are not showing the visitors who just went on our ride a few minutes ago.
Please do not press backwards, but move forward through the aisles in a happy, orderly manner, and once we have cleaned the slime from all the seats, we will soon have you on your way
(Passengers take a seat and the ride begins)
Train begins journey by climbing incline, passing through a gigantic computer TV screen. The screen is a vapour layer + green lines radiating from the two top corners and intersecting throughout the flat area of the 'screen'.
Having passed through the screen, the train ascends inside an inclined reducing cone. The radial lines of the cone and circular hoops of lines may simply be steel rods in reds and oranges, etc., light by U.V. light. If possible, the whole cone should revolve. The top of the cone is a blacked-out corner.
Train emerges around corner and in the darkness at near distance is a computer graphic line drawing of a landscape of rocks with a robot leaning against a rocket transporter. The robot drawing moves and pulls a large hand lever connected to the ride track and the train stops.
Slowly the lighting begins to change and the landscape, transporter and robot become a three-dimensional reality upon an island floating among the surrounding computer graph.
Both robot and transporter are rather worn and dilapidated, though they have a cheerful appearance. The robot wears a Second World War leather flying helmet with goggles set above on an elastic headband. His mouth opens to reveal a large set of flashing teeth in a fixed broad grin. His prominent 'ping pong' eyes blink. Around his neck he wears a small, very tatty fur collar and spotted neckerchief. His metal chest has bolt heads, inspection plates, one or two adjusting controls and a bedraggled medal on a ribbon. He wears a form of scruffy riding breeches and high lace-up boots, the breeches are held up over a rubber concertina mid-riff section by large cloth and leather braces. On his feet are roller skates with scarlet wheels. From his waist hangs a cowboy-type gun belt and special laser hand gun. His metal arms are protected by shoulder pads, flexible rubber concertina elbows, and very worn three-fingered yellow pigskin gloves.
He leans on his transporter which is stationary and floating. It has no wings but a jet engine bulges at each side of the open cockpit. It has an aircraft tail with a small section broken out of it. It is rather dusty, has exhaust soot stains from the nose. Behind the cockpit is a flashing yellow 'police type' light. It has old coach lamps on each side, a rocket missile clipped to each side and a large clumsy-looking machine gun mounted on the front cowling. The whole appearance and finish is somewhat dented, old and worn.
The robot speaks -
'Hello everyone - I am 'Zapomatic 5' all computerised, fully automated ... automated ... automated (he slaps the side of his head with his left hand)... adventure ride guard."
"You have nothing to fear. I am with you."
"Normally, I would be able to send yon off on a very delightful journey through our computer generated fairy grottos - but first I must re-assure you that the unfounded and ridiculous rumours of the green hideous monster have not been spread by people coming off this ride - because no one has come off this ride alive for the last two days."
"Anyway - "never fear - I am here" - and I'm going to travel with you, and although the monster and the robots do not exist you can help me destroy it should it try to eat you - as it has with the others."
"Never fear - you must be joking!" The metallic voice floats above us and is finally located coming from a strange metal sphere which has a number of projections, attachments and winking lights. It hovers closer to Zapomatic - "How you have the nerve, I don't know... you've been condemned three times, they don't even programme your spares any more."
Zapomatic speaks "Ignore it! ...Her! Nag, nag, nag. You shouldn't be here anyway - you are supposed to be on a fixed monitoring orbit."
"Now Folks, I must warn you that the computer can create any environment and even non-existent creatures, like this scrap metal above, but only an evil monster, like the one that isn't, could make horrid festering primeval slimly swamps, etc., - so let's begin to enjoy ourselves and go on a lovely merry ride through the fairy glen and grottos."
"Now, once I start the Zapmobile, we will be ready to go (train starts off) ... wait! ... not yet! ... stop! ... wait! ... I'm coming ... hold on ... you can't go yet! .." (The train disappears down the track to sounds of Zapmobile coughing, whirring, exploding, back-firing, etc., fading away.)
The train follows the track into the first area which is an arctic wasteland covered in snow floating within the computer graph which also forms a sky network receding behind the hills. Close by the track it passes the remains of an old burnt out and rusted, wrecked train, partially covered by drifting snow, odd skeleton passengers are just discernable.
There are no signs of life, there is a moaning wind, the atmosphere is dark, stormy and grey; there are flurries of snow; it is cold. The only sounds are flapping material and cracking ice. There is a pale blue light as if from the moon and it is periodically obscured by cloud shapes hurrying across.
The sphere appears amongst us still muttering disparaging remarks about Zapomatic - "Didn't I tell you, I knew it, always the same." ... Suddenly an explosion hurls snow in the air. The sphere gives a feminine scream before continuing .,. "I told you, I knew it ..."
This is followed by larger explosions even nearer. In the distance, the passengers can now see snow creatures in space helmets. They are equipped with rocket launchers which flash immediately prior to the nearby explosions. One bandit rides a creature which looks like part-brontosauras, part-Tyrannasauras Rex.
In the middle of the attack, cries are herd from the approaching 'Zapomatic 5'. He appears, through a cloud of smoke, desperately clinging to the outside of his out-of-control Zapmobile, hurtling past at great speed with sparks issuing from his overheating roller skates, he barely has time to scream - "Get out, they are coming, keep going! Never fear - I am here!" before he disappears round a pile of rocks. The sphere floats out from its hiding place behind a rock - "Did you hear him ... never fear ... a lot of help he is!"
The train reaches the safety of the rocks, travels through a narrow rock gorge. It becomes warmer, there is a smell of damp. The train passes Zapomatic working in the open engine section of the Zapmobile with greasy, dirt-covered face and arms, loose tubes, pipes, springs, etc., hang out of the open section as he attempts to complete a repair. He shouts - "I'11 be with you in a moment, Never fear - I am here!" Sphere hovers ... "Big deal, some adventure ride guard you are."
Round a bend we arrive in a swamp of primeval slime. The trackway is built up to keep it above the slime; it creaks, groans, slips and partially gives way.
Zapomatic has arrived alongside now and sits proudly in full command from within the cockpit. Sphere - "About time, just look at the mess they're in now." Zapomatic warns the visitors to hold on tight and keep very quiet as the trackway has previously given way dropping all into the slime. Mist swirls around us as large bubbles rise to the surface, vague green flows can be seen under the water. As the train lurches, the passengers suddenly see swamp creatures come up above the surface to inspect the visitor before popping back down. A large crocodile ominously appears to menace the train - but we are re-assured that he is on our side. He idly appears to swallow a swamp creature as it pops under the water.
The train slowly progresses over the creaking track. Zapomatic re-assures everyone how safe they are now he is in control. His jet engines cough, splutter and stop . . . In the silence the Zapmobile slowly sinks into the bubbling water! Left behind once more he shouts - "Beware of the Green Ogre." Sphere "1 don't know why I'm here, I could be in a safe orbit."
The train approaches a rock face to the growing noise of an impending earthquake. We hear and possibly see the ground crack, the train passes perilously close to a series of boulders which shake and wobble under the effect of the earthquake. Thankfully, we gain the safety of a large cavern. Ominously we see in the darkness pairs of winking lights moving in the background. They are eyes watching, then without warning, a laser beam shoots across us to explode amongst the rocks. This is followed by more until we see that we are under a laser attack from the punkamatics who guard the cavern. We hear a strange beat amongst the rocks and our ears are tortured by weird, unearthly cries and grunts from the half-hidden Punkamatics. Suddenly, another cry heralds the call "I am here - never fear!" and Zapomatic cruises into the cavern, his orange light flashing and heroic music issuing from Zapmobile's quadrophonic speakers. He half rotates the floating Zapmobile and fires his left hand rocket. There is a clatter as the rocket falls out of its holder onto the floor, It splutters, fizzles with sparks, and finally goes out, leaving a small cloud of smoke. Amongst all the laser beams, Zapomatic leans over to look at the rocket. From different areas of his Zapmobile, we hear metallic sounds of ricochets and sparks fly off as the craft is apparently hit numerous times.
Suddenly towards the end of the cavern, a light begins to glow, we hear approaching giant feet crunching the rock and echoing through the cavern. The lasers fall quiet, the Punkamatics jabber to each other in anticipation. The sounds of enormous breathing grows with the approaching feet and light. A rumbling, volcanic voice demands - "Who dares disturb the peace of the mighty green slavering Ogre?" A spot light falls directly down onto Zapomatic who replies in a small voice - "I ... I ... I ... (slaps head) ... I do!"
Above the rocks we see the monster guardian grow bigger and bigger as he comes into view, his shadow spreads across the cavern until he stands 12' - 15' high, a great wobbling inflated monster. The glowing light 1s behind him. Zapomatic shouts once more in an heroic voice - "I do" and pivotting his machine gun, he fires a series of shots - he misses. The monster inflates even larger. Zapomatic calls to the sphere - "Help - do something!" Sphere - "Now he asks me, what does he think I am, I shouldn't even be here! Its always me that has to think of something!" A hum issues from the sphere, a section of it spins, it winks brighter and brighter and with a loud bang, a beam shoots from the sphere to the monster.
It hits the monster - a great jet of green smoke issues from the hole. There are a series of flashing red lights and a computer voice shouts metalically - "Erase, Erase, Erase" - and with the noise of a deflating balloon, the monster groans and collapses in a pile of rubber £olds. (As it collapses, the red lights and the voice fades into silence.)
The lights on Zapomatic increase in brilliance as he waves, accelerates and shouts to the passengers - "Come on, we are free!"
The Zapmobile accelerates faster, disappearing behind the next rocky outcrop; there is a pause and we hear the most appalling crash of metal, splintering wood, glass and rolling metal discs. The sphere mutters - "I knew it! Didn't I tell you - I did - I told you."
The train comes round the bend to find the remains of the shattered Zapmobile embedded high in a giant computer column. Steam and smoke rise from the scene and amongst it all Zapomatic dangles by his braces below the cockpit. He bobs gently up and down, and his feet float above the ground. As we drive past, he waves, grins and calls - "Thank you ... I hope you all ... you all ... you all ... you all ... (slaps head) enjoyed the trip! Tell your friends you met me!" "Remember, I am here, never fear." The sphere - "What about me - huh! no mention of me - bye folks!"
The train of happy, laughing, holiday ho-downers climb out of the train and make their way to the entrance to queue again and laughingly pay once more for another hilarious trip with Zapomatic!
1st November 1985