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USA Part II – The Conan that wasn’t, and other adventures in LA

Jun
06

As we bid adieu to San Francisco, it was time to head to the City of Angels, Los Angeles.

With only 3 full days available, we decided to rent a car to save time on public transport, and keep our core itinerary to a very distilled 3:

  • Warner Brothers Studios Tour
  • Disneyland
  • Universal Studios

If we had time, we’ll include side attractions such as the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Santa Monica Boulevard etc. Turned out, time was on our side.

Hollywood Boulevard

Hollywood Boulevard

This is where Jimmy Kimmel tapes his shows, right along Hollywood Boulevard. Where’s Guillermo? Coincidentally, Matt Damon’s (with whom Kimmel’s had a long-standing “feud”)┬áStar was right opposite of Kimmel’s studio.

Harry Potter Walk of Fame

Star Wars Walk of Fame

Hollywood Boulevard

To the extreme left is the Chinese Theatre, where Happy Hogan was injured in a blast in Iron Man 3. Cool huh!

Superheroes Hollywood Boulevard

It was a slow crime day..

Disneyland

Aahhh.. Disneyland, a place where adults and children alike fight for rides.

Disneyland Tickets

Disneyland

Aladdin Disneyland

We were literally the only adults in THAT queue

Storm Trooper Disneyland

Who’s more badass?

Its a small world Disneyland

Nicely done, photobomber!

Of course, one of the main events would be the daily Disneyland Parade along Main Street, which happens every evening, where many Disney characters come together in a song and dance float parade!

Disneyland Parade

Disneyland Parade

Warner Bros Studio Tour

When we were selecting our hotel in LA, we sort of knew that our highlights would be Warner Bros, Universal and Disney. With that in mind, we went about searching for a hotel that would be near one of these spots.

Finally, we settled on Tangerine Hotel in Burbank, literally a 10 minute walk to Warner Brothers Studio. The hotel also had a Subway across the street, as well as awesome mexican food.

The hotel staff were also great, and though a pretty small hotel, they had free wi-fi, a small pool, and free parking. It was cosy and awesome. So a shoutout to Tangerine, and if any of you are looking to staying in Burbank, it’s a damn fine choice!

P1120782

We called ourselves “the Boons” way before WB did.

WB Studio Tour

Filming in progress. Looks like shit just hit the fan! And we found the culprit below! Check out the identical cars, pre and post accident.

WB Studio Tour

WB Studio Tours

As we went along various sites of the Studio lots, we were introduced to a lot of facade buildings. You could only film from the outside, and they are made of plywood, or something.

Warner Bros VIP Tour

He’s the hero Gotham deserves, but this is the car I need right now

Last but not least, one of the most loved TV shows in the history of television!

WB Studio Tour

WB Studio Tour

Can we BE more touristy?

The set of Central Perk!

Now, here we come to the part where I explain the title of this post. Right at the end of the WB Studio Tour, our very friendly guide asked if we were keen to be a part of the Conan audience that night. He had some standby tickets to give out, and he said chances were pretty good that we could get on.

We weren’t diehard Conan fans (or even casual fans to be honest), so we wanted to know who the guests were.

He said five words, two of which blew my mind:

JJ Abrams and Jesse Eisenberg

Holy shit JJ Abrams! I didn’t mind Eisenberg either! So we snatched the tickets and proceeded to pee my pants in excitement.

But as you can guess from the title, when we turned up at the allocated time at the allocated place, this lady said that all the seats have been taken up.

Man, I was sadder than Sad Keanu.

Universal Studios Hollywood

Brushing off the disappointment, we drove on to our next destination.

Universal Studios

Universal Studios Hollywood

Universal Studios HollywoodUniversal Studios Hollywood

We first went on the Universal Studios Studio Tour. The Tour (video hosted by Jimmy Fallon) brought us around the studio lot, and showed us some of the sets including Bates Motel below, as well as the actual plane crash set from War of the Worlds.

The tour also included many interactive elements where we were shown rain simulation, flood simulation, earthquake in a train station platform, as well as in immersive 360 King Kong experience. It really was one of the more interesting aspects at Universal.

Universal Studios Hollywood

Bates Motel

Universal Studios Hollywood

Set of War of the Worlds

Then, all of a sudden, as if everyone knew who we were, we had bunches of very strange people come take pictures with us.

SpongeBob Universal

Beetlejuice Universal

Maybe its time for a gritty and realistic reboot!

Minions

Meeeeenions

Scooby Doo

Shaggy’s expression is spot on

Curious George

What’s he curious about?

Dora

Frankenstein

It’s Aliiiiiveeee!

See what I mean?

Oh, a quick tip. If you’re looking to have a good time, shell out a bit more for the “front of line” passes. Really saves a lot of time and energy from queuing!

Santa Monica Pier

Last but not least, we snuck some time out to visit Santa Monica Pier!

Santa Monica Pier Santa Monica Pier

Santa Monica Pier - Pacific Park

What a perfect and scenic way to end the LA leg of the tour!

Watch out for the Epic Finale to the USA Triplogy – Las Vegas.

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