New photo of 1976 WDW bride added, Jan 2015.
This post and previous one have been massively revised, thanks to the remarkable new photos and film that surfaced in July of 2011. See the previous post for details.
This variety is obviously a throwback to some earlier Marc Davis concepts (see Part One). The Disneyland story is slightly different from the Orlando story, so we'll tell them one at a time. That one at the top of this post is an early Disneyland photo. Two round, glowing eyes in a darkened face. Hey, how about a "magic eye" 3-D image? Get used to these, folks; I've got a million of 'em. Use the practice thingy over there on the right and maybe you can get the hang of it if you can't already do it. At worst, you get two images for the price of one, so what is there to complain about? From 1990:
Some time in the early 90's, the Imagineers decided to beef up the attic scene (unnecessarily, in my book). They gave the bride a visible face, put in a phantom piano player plunking out a distorted wedding march, and re-dressed the pop-up ghosts as groomsmen, each of them shouting "I do" in a mocking sort of way. That "middle bride" version of BH debuted in September of 1995. This widely-reproduced photograph makes her look kind of sweet. Notice how the eyes have been dimmed, so you can read the face? What'd I tell you in the last post?
we are to the Marc Davis sketch showing a darkened upper face on the candle bearer.
Orlando went to a "middle bride" with a fully-visible face about the same time as Anaheim. The main difference was the hair, which was pretty crazy at WDW. They were forever fine-tuning her face, but a lot of people never liked this version ("the smurf bride") and preferred the spookier DL middle bride.
But just as was the case at DL, the middle bride doesn't look so much threatening as forlorn (yes, I realize I'm overusing that word). Still, WDW never got as melodramatic as DL did, since Florida was spared the mocking groomsmen shouting "I do." Never got those.
here are two handy murals of the bride down through the years.
At Disneyland, the Corpse Bride version of Beating Heart was the original, lasting from Aug 1969 until the mid 70's. The round-eyed, dark-faced Beating Heart replaced her and lasted until 1995. Then it's the first "middle bride" (Sept 1995—ca. 2000), the second "middle bride" (ca. 2000—May 2006), and Constance (May 2006—now).
At WDW, we started out with the Corpse Bride (Oct 71—mid 70's), followed by Ol' Round Eyes. They went to a "middle bride" about the same time DL did (ca. 1995). WDW continued to fiddle around with her over the years, but not as radically as DL did, and so I lump all the brides in the Orlando attic from 1995 to 2007 into one "middle bride" category. Constance debuted in the fall of 2007.