Country Bear Playhouse

Attraction of the Week:

Country Bear Jamboree

or, Iago & Zazu Bear All at Grizzly Hall

Music for Going (Up)Country:

Quicktime is required to hear the music. Quicktime is available from Apple.

Iago: Hey Zazu, what's with the tux?

Zazu: Good heavens, don't tell me you've forgotten about that special performance we're attending tonight! You did get the tickets like I asked you to, didn't you?

Iago: Of course I did. I was just wondering why you're so dressed up.

Zazu: Iago, one does not attend this type of presentation in just any old feathers. By the way, Mr. Beakwell, where is your monkey suit?

Iago: My monkey suit!!?? That's been packed away in mothballs since we filled in at the "Journey Into Jungle Book" show over at Animal Kingdom. Speaking of which, I never wanna see another trampoline as long as I live.

Zazu: No, no, a monkey suit is a tuxedo.

Iago: Oh. I don't have one of those, but I guess I could borrow one from one of Mary Poppins' penguins.

Zazu: I hardly think their suits are removable, except by taxidermists. Here, you can borrow this sportcoat of mine.

Iago: Okay ... um, it's a little tight.

Zazu: Yes, a few more trampoline sessions might be just the thing for you.

Iago: Oh shut up! It's just because of my thick feathers. Besides, I don't see what all the fuss is about.

Zazu: When we get to the Bob Carr Performing Arts Center, you'll see that everyone else is properly dressed.

Iago: The Bob Carr Performing Arts Center? When did they change the name from Grizzly Hall?

Zazu: Iago, what are you talking about? Grizzly Hall is where the -- <GASP!> -- where those ursine bumpkins perform!

Iago: Don't be silly. It's where the Country Bears put on their show.

Zazu: Yes, Boo-Boo, I'm well aware of that. I happen to be smarter than the average bear. But you were supposed to get us tickets for the Orlando Opera Company's production of Wagner's "The Valkyries" at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Center.

Iago: No I wasn't. You specifically said you wanted to see Bruin Hilda. And where else would a bruin named Hilda be appearing but at Grizzly Hall?

Zazu: Is your teeny little brain completely filled with Pooh? I said I wanted to see Brunhilde. She happens to be the daughter of the Norse god Wotan. She is a Valkyrie. That's a mythological maiden who rides through the air and chooses heroes from among those slain in battle. She takes them to Valhalla.

Iago: I don't care if she takes them to Val Kilmer. I know what I heard. And I have the tickets to the Country Bear Jamboree to prove it.

Zazu: They don't even sell tickets to the Country Bear Jamboree, you twit!

Iago: Well, I must admit, the guy at the entrance gave me a funny look, but he was more than happy to take that C-note you gave me.

Zazu: So, not only will I miss the opera and have nothing to do tonight, but I'm also out a hundred dollars because of you?

Iago: It doesn't have to be that way. Let's go see the show. I wanna see the Bearnaked Ladies.

Zazu: Oh, allright. Just let me slip out of this tuxedo and into some dirty old rags.

Iago: I didn't even know you owned any dirty old rags.

Zazu: I don't. We'll have to stop at your place on the way over. I knew that red neck of yours would come in handy sometime.

Iago: Don't be so high and mighty. You look blue collar to me.

APPROACHING GRIZZLY HALL...

Iago: Wow, these bears must be good. This is quite a crowd. The line goes all the way down the street.

Zazu: Those people are waiting for SpectroMagic to begin, you Baloo-natic. The guests waiting for the bear show are inside, in the holding pen.

Iago: Oh yeah, I see. There's still a lot of people in here. Do you think we'll get in?

Zazu: Unfortunately, yes. This place eats up crowds faster than Yogi Bear swallows jelly sandwiches, and has been doing so since the Magic Kingdom opened on 1 October 1971. This so-called attraction -- inexplicably an E-ticket --didn't appear on the West coast until 24 March 1972. There are actually two theaters in the Disneyland version, but because of low demand, only rarely are both used. By the way, the California attraction was renamed "Country Bear Playhouse" on 4 July 1986. The show was changed from "Country Bear Jamboree" to "Country Bear Vacation Hoedown," also known as "Bear Band Vacation Show." There is also a seasonal show, "Country Bear Christmas," which debuted in November of 1984. That was the first time an attraction was reprogrammed to create a new show.

Iago: I don't remember seeing the theater in Frontierland when we visited Disneyland.

Zazu: That's because it's not in Frontierland. The bears do their pickin' and grinnin' in a section of the park with the unfortunate moniker of Critter Country. <shudder> It was originally called Bear Country, but was changed in 1988, while Splash Mountain was being built, to reflect its more diverse animal population.

Iago: I think Critter Country sounds nice. It reminds me of Ellie Mae Clampett. She lives out there in Southern California, you know.

Zazu: It doesn't take much to remind you of a pretty girl, does it? Personally, I was quite distressed when Bear Country replaced the Indian Village.

Iago: Ooh, now you've got me thinking about Pocahontas. So tell me, does Disneyland Paris have this show? I may as well think about Esmeralda while I'm on a roll.

Zazu: No, the French have been spared. Tokyo Disneyland does have the bears, though. The Jamboree opened in Westernland on 15 April 1983. All of these shows, by the way, last 15 minutes.

Iago: Hey look, the doors are opening.

Zazu: <sigh> As a former employer of mine liked to say, "Oh, goodie."

THE SHOW

Henry: Give me a little intro there, Gomer. <begins to play a tune>

Zazu: That little ditty is called "Pianjo."

Iago: How do you know?

Zazu: Because I pay attention to my libretto, instead of my libido.

Henry: Howdy, folks. Welcome to the one and only original Country Bear Jamboree, featuring a bit of Americana, our musical heritage of the past. But enough of this chit chat, yick yack, and flim flam. Just refrain from hibernatin' --

Zazu: I believe he's talking to you, Iago.

Iago: Zzzzzz ... Huh? Wha-?

Zazu: Stay awake. This isn't the Hall of Presidents.

Melvin: Hey! He's a regular Liberace.

Max: And he plays good, too.

Iago: Zazu, have we stumbled into a "Talking Heads" concert?

Zazu: No, that's Melvin Moose, Max Deer, and Buff Buffalo. The Counry Bears' counterparts to Waldorf and Statler.

The Five Bear Rugs sing:

The Bear Band bears will play now In the good ol' key of G.
Zeek and Zeb and Ted and Fred And a bear named Tennessee...

Iago: <tapping his feet> Hey, these Bear Rugs have quite a beat.

Zazu: <covering his ears> Beat? Yes, I'd like to take them outside, hang them up, and beat them. I can't believe that Xavier wrote these lyrics, and George wrote this music.

Iago: Really? Well, maybe they were distracted by Charro and Gracie. I know I certainly would be.

Zazu: I meant Xavier Atencio and George Bruns, not Xavier Cugat and George Burns! Can you please get your mind off the girls?

Iago: Well, you were obsessed with seeing that Brunhilde person. I guess she's a babe. What does she look like, anyway?

Zazu: <cough> Let's just say that she has long blonde braids, and ... uh ... horns.

Iago: Horns!? Oh, I know who you're talking about. I've seen that broad in the Haunted Mansion. Yikes, Zazu, I know you're a hornbill, but really --

Zazu: Don't be absurd, Iago. I simply admire her stunning soprano voice. Which is more than I can say for these bears. Oh, thank goodness they've finished that dreadful song. Only to be replaced by another dreadful song.

Wendell & Henry sing:

Well here's a fractured folk song,
Yeah, butchered by two birds...

Iago: What are they talking about? We don't sing this in the Tiki Room. And by the way, what's up with that live coonskin cap on Henry?

Zazu: That's Sammy the raccoon. These are apparently peaceable bears who don't belong to the NRA like Davy Crockett does.

Iago: Oh yeah? Then who's responsible for beheading Melvin, Max, and Buff?

Zazu: Er, good point. Maybe Pooh did it. We know he likes to kill Toads.

Liver Lips McGrowl sings:

My woman ain't pretty, but she don't swear none.
She's kinda heavy, don't weigh a ton.
She's my woman, through and through.
I love her only 'cause my heart is true.

Iago: Oh my God!

Zazu: What's the matter?

Iago: Just yesterday I met Liver Lips over by the Emu leg wagon, and I agreed to go on a blind date with some girl he knows named Trixie. Quick, how can I catch an incurable disease before Friday night?

Zazu: You already are an incurable disease. I can't seem to get rid of you no matter how hard I try.

Henry & Wendell sing:

Mama don't whip little Buford.
Mama don't pound on his head.
Mama don't whip little Buford.
I think you should shoot him instead.

Henry: <Bang!>

Iago: So much for that "peaceable bear" rumor. And where are the lady bears?

Zazu: Here comes one now.

Trixie sings:

Tears will be the chaser for your wine.
After you leave this love of mine.
Bright lights and taverns, That's where you'll spend your time.
And tears will be the chaser for your wine.

Henry: Beautiful, beautiful. That was a mighty big song, Trixie.

Iago: Never mind the freakin' song. That's a mighty big girl. She is one Ursa Major. What was Liver Lips thinking?

Zazu: Well, Iago, as bears go, Trixie is quite the babe. She's been known as the Calgary Charmer, the Alaska Allurer, the Vancouver Vamp, the Bewitcher of British Columbia and the Tacoma Temptress. Now she's hailed as the Tampa Temptation.

Iago: Not only does it sound like she's been around the block a few times, but all those names sound suspiciously like football teams. I think she's a linebacker in drag. But she's right about tears being the chaser for my wine. I'm crying just thinking about a date with her.

Bears sing:

Ring-a-ding-ding Mary, Prettiest little gal I ever did see.
Her name was Devilish Mary. (What a gal!)
Hadn't been married but about two weeks,
She got as mean as the devil.
And every time I looked cross-eyed,
She'd hit me on the head with a "shevil."

Iago: I'd like to give Mary a ring-a-ding myself. Getting hit with a "shevil" sounds better than getting crushed by a hug from Trixie.

Henry: Now, here they come. Those little sun bonnets from the sunshine state. Bunny, Bubbles, and Beulah.

Sun Bonnets sing:

Everytime I meet a guy who gets me shook,
All I ever get from him's a dirty look.
It's the same way, everywhere I've found.
All the guys that turn me on, turn me down.

Iago: <wolf whistle> Hey girls, I won't turn you down!

Zazu: You won't turn them on, either, Grisly Adams. Besides, they're too young for you. They're Ursa Minors.

Iago: Yeah, I guess you're right. But they'd sure make cheap dates. How much could a Happy Meal possibly cost?

Zazu: Have you been to a McDonald's on property lately?

Henry: Now, here she is. That delightful, delicate, dedicated, dimpled darling of the Dakotas. The last of the big time swingers. Swinging Teddi Barra. Swing it, Teddi!

Iago: Ooh, a swinger! This sounds good. I bet she's --

Teddi sings:

Well, there he goes. He hardly knows The heart he's breaking...

Iago: Never mind the heart breaking. What about that swing? I think Yogi Berra is more attractive. And I know he's got a better swing.

Zazu: Iago, you must stop thinking like a bird, and start thinking more like a bear. Brown bears typically weigh between 330 and 825 pounds, depending on the availability of food. They can consume 80 to 90 pounds of food per day during the Summer and early Fall.

Iago: No wonder there's never any Toll House cookies left at the Main Street Bake Shop whenever I drop by.

Zazu: Some male brown bears can weigh up to 1,500 pounds. Of course, they typically only live to the age of 25...

Iago: Yeesh, I wonder how much this Big Al guy weighs.

Big Al sings (sorta):

There was bloooood on the saddle.
And bloooood all around.
And a great big puddle
Of bloooood on the ground.

Iago: <yelling> Of course there was blood all around! You crushed the poor horse, fatso!

Zazu: <nervously> I wouldn't get him riled, Iago. Those front claws can be 4-3/4 inches long, you know.

Iago: <yelling> And you need a manicure, too!

Zazu: Stop it before there's a great big puddle of blood on your seat! You should be more respectful. That's Tex Ritter doing Big Al's vocals.

Iago: The guy from "Three's Company"? You think he can get Suzanne Somers to autograph my Thighmaster? On second thought, she can just autograph my thighs!

Zazu: You're thinking of John Ritter. He's Tex Ritter's son. And I'm fairly certain that Suzanne Somers doesn't want to get within 50 yards of your thighs. Now pay attention. Henry is singing about Davy Crockett.

Henry sings:

Born on a mountain top in Tennessee.
Greenest state in the land of the free.
Raised in the woods, so he knew every tree.
Tamed him a "b'ar" when he was only three...

Iago: Tamed him a b'ar? Wait a minute, those aren't the words --

Zazu: Shhhhhh! If these bears knew the real lyrics, Davy would be patching up cracks in his hide, instead of in the Liberty Bell.

Iago: The Liberty Belle has cracks in it? Remind me not to get on any Disney boats ever again. They seem to have a lot of problems.

Zazu: Not that Liberty Belle. The other Liberty Bell. The kind that Quasimodo rings. Which only serves to remind me that "The Valkyries" is part of Wagner's "Der Ring Des Nibelungen." And I'm missing it.

Iago: Who the heck is this Wagner guy, anyway?

Zazu: Do you mean to say that you've never heard of "Das Rheingold"?

Iago: Of course I have. I used to drink it out of my beer stein all the time. Are you saying that Wagner is one of those Beer Stein Bears?

Zazu: That's Berenstain Bears! And Wagner was a composer.

Iago: Ohhhhhh. Just like that Leonard Beer Stein -- I mean, Berenstain.

Zazu: No, that was Leonard Bernstein! Wagner was the mentor of Engelbert Humperdinck.

Iago: Oh, I've never liked him. Tom Jones is much better.

Zazu: <sob ... whimper>

Henry: Well, folks, this concludes our show. So thanks for bearing with us to the beary end, and bear-el around to see us again. What do you say, Sammy?

Sammy: I say, you all come back, ya hear?

Zazu: <muttering> Not bloody likely, but thanks anyway, Sammy. I simply cannot believe that A Night at the Opera turned into an evening spent with a bunch of Animal Crackers.

Iago: Oh, don't be such a Groucho. At least you didn't have to wear that Monkey Business suit. Now let's go strap on the feedbag and order Room Service back at the Tiki Room.

Zazu: No thanks, Horse Feathers. You're lucky I don't put you in the birdie boiler and add you to Aunt Polly's menu as Duck Soup.

Iago: Aw, come on. This show was better than the time we spent a day At the Circus with Dumbo. Or the time we got stuck on the Great Movie Ride and spent A Night in Casablanca. And I've done stuff that you wanted to do, too. Like the time you insisted we Go West to check out Disneyland. Or the time we went to The Big Store with all the books. What was that place called again?

Zazu: It was called the library, you Cocoanut.

Iago: Um, how did this post deteriorate into a Marx Brothers thingy?

Zazu: I'm not sure, but it could be worse.

Iago: How?

Zazu: It could have ended with the Monty Python "Dead Parrot" skit. Consider yourself lucky.


The music selected to accompany this page is "Flight of the Valkyries" by Richard Wagner.



This page last updated 26 August 2009.
Copyright © 1998-2009 by Bruce A Metcalf and Ronnie O'Rourke (JIROMI). The characters and attractions mentioned here are the property of the Walt Disney Company, and if you don't believe us, their lawyers will chase you up a tree!

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