Originally, the ride was not a comedy. It was designed to simulate a safari, allowing guests who had not--or would not--ever experience one to do so. It's narration took an educational tone.
Remnants of this still exist in the script. Sometimes factoids are used to begin a new scene, which offers a break from the corny humor and restores some gravitas to the experience, but usually, they're used to set up punchlines.
The Amazon River Edit
Welcome aboard the [boat name]! My name is [the skipper's name], and I'll be your skipper and guide for the next two weeks down these rivers of adventure.
This is a cruise you could only take in a place like the Magic Kingdom. We'll travel across three continents and down four rivers of the world, and you won't even need your passport! All you'll need is some imagination. If you're a little short of it today, borrow some from the person next to you.
Our first destination today is the river they call "the Jungle Sea;" the Amazon River of South America.
The Amazon is by far the mightiest river in the world, carrying four times as much water as any other.
As we leave civilization behind, we enter the mighty Amazon of South America, where rare plants and lush vegetation grow in abundance.
This is a tropical rain forest, where it rains three hundred and sixty-five days a year. Many of the plants you see require no soil to grow; they get their nourishment strictly from the moisture in the air.
Scattered through the trees are rare and beautiful bromeliads. These colorful plants have no roots, and get all the moisture they need directly from the air and rain.
Everything in the Amazon is larger than life. Take a look at the butterflies!
The Amazon carries four times as much water as any other river. A lot of it comes from waterfalls like this one.
The Congo River Edit
As we round the bend, we change not only rivers, but also continents! Now we're on the Congo River of Central Africa: the deepest, darkest part of the jungle.
The Congo River has been described as a giant snake, stretching across the African continent, with its tail in the jungle, and its head in the sea.
Those native war canoes belong to a local tribe of pygmies.
If you don't mind, we're gonna stop by my camp and pick up a few things.
The Nile River Edit
We've left the Congo River, and are now traveling on another famous river of Africa--the longest one in the world. Who knows what it is? That's right! The Nile River!
The Nile flows for four thousand, one hundred miles down to Egypt, but it starts in the heart of Africa, where it's not unusual to see elephants along the banks...
Along the banks of the river now, you can see papyrus, Nile cabbage, elephant grass--[The skipper notices the elephant.]--speaking of which, that is the largest blade of elephant grass I've ever seen!
Do you know how you can tell this is an African elephant? Because we're in Africa! [Note: this sets up a joke that's paid off in the Indian Elephant Bathing Pool.]
On the left bank, the enormous ears and huge tusks tell us that's an African elephant, the world's largest land animal. And for those of you with short memories, there on the right bank, the enormous ears and huge tusks tell us that's an African elephant, the world's largest land animal.
I'll try to get us through here quickly. They sometimes like to use our boats as stepping stones.
Unlike the Indian elephants, both male and female African elephants have tusks. These tusks make it easier for them to forage for food, and to terrify our Jungle Cruise skippers!
You think your family eats a lot? These elephants eat between three and six hundred pounds of food a day!
Here it is: the Great African Veldt! Home to a huge array of wildlife!
When elephants trample through the jungle, they make paths other animals can follow, like the ones up ahead, on the African Veldt. This is where zebras, wildebeests, impalas, and giraffes come to the Nile for water. But not all of them will return to their herds. That pride of lions up on the rocks will see to that. This illustrates a basic law of the jungle: never be a zebra.
Up ahead of us: the expansive grassland region of the jungle known as "the Great African Veldt." As you can see, many animals come here to find water...and some, to find their dinner!
The Nile flows past the African Savannah, or Veldt, where great herds of animals roam free.
We've been having a dry spell lately, and when that happens, all the animals come down to the river for their water.
That pride of lions has made a kill. This illustrates the basic law of the jungle: survival of the fittest.
That pride of lions has made a kill. This illustrates the basic law of the jungle: survival of the fastest! Er...I mean, fittest.
Even though a rhino can weigh over two tons, he can still run as fast as a horse! Too bad they can't!
We're entering Crocodile Country, and as you can see, danger lurks around every bend in the jungle, so keep your favorite family members inside the boat!
Does everyone know the difference between alligators and crocodiles? The crocodile has a longer, more pointed snout, and the alligator's nose is wider and more square at the tip. Here, I'll show you. [The skipper indicates a specific guest.] Would you stick your hand out and get us a bite pattern?
Crocodiles are just one of the dangers of the jungle. You also have to look out for others, like monsoons and rapids and waterfalls.
I've heard that more water comes over Schweitzer Falls in one minute than the average person drinks in a lifetime. I dunno about you, but I find that a little hard to swallow.
We're approaching a fork in the river, and there's a strong current pulling the boat. I'd better not fight it, or we might run ashore! [The skipper steers the boat to the right.] Phew! That was close! The river has a mind of its own.
We're entering a pool of hippos. Just one of these six thousand pounders could easily sink our boat.
We're entering a pool of hippos, some of the most dangerous creatures in the jungle Their teeth can reach up to two feet long, which can easily punch a hole in our boat. Keep a close eye out in case they try to charge us.
Easy, now. No sudden moves. We're entering the pool of hippopotami, and they could easily upset our boat.
Here they come! I'll scare them off. [The skipper fires the gun in the air--not at the hippos.] They hate that. [The skipper wiggles their finger in their ear to "unplug" it.] Actually, so do I!
[The skipper fires the gun.] That should scare them off. They hate loud noises! [The hippos puff out air and water as they retreat.] It also makes 'em sneeze. Maybe they're allergic to gun powder.
The worst thing about firing a gun in the jungle is that you never know who you'll wake up! Everybody stay real quiet and keep an eye on these warriors.
Wow! It's the secret celebration of the lost Umbala tribe! No outsider has ever been permitted to witness this ceremony and survive! That means we're...in a world of trouble!