As some of you may know (I legitimately don’t know how much I’ve posted about this in the past) I’ve been looking for a Jurassic Park Junior Novelization for quite some time now. Mostly this was because I wanted to see if it showed any deleted scenes like the Jurassic World novelization did, but also partially because of the Jurassic Park Legacy Encyclopedia article that says that Ian Malcolm was described as an ex-hippie in it (he was not). But I was unsuccessful in obtaining this bit of unique canon until my friend Mike Jenkins graciously sent me a package of Jurassic Park stuff that included a copy. Let’s dig in, shall we?
The book comes with some cool full-color photos. As you can see, there are a few shots of the cast members, the only prelude to which could possibly have been, “Picture time, get in character and make it snappy, we’re on a schedule here! Smile!… Eh, or don’t, the kids won’t care.” It also includes a snapshot from the deleted scene where Ellie grabs the fern. This one:
Just like the JW novelization, a couple of short deleted scenes and lines are included. For instance, the explanation of the sick triceratops’ ailment. Just like in the novel, Alan and Ellie figure out that the root of the problem is the triceratops swallowing West Indian lilac berries when she gulps down her gizzard stones:
As for deleted lines, there are quite a few of them. Muldoon drops some sick puns:
Malcolm snarks it up. Everybody say it with me— IAN, YOU COMPLETE DORK:
Hammond makes an offer that no sane person could refuse, yet everyone does. Why? Who hurt you, scientists, why would you throw away the opportunity to pet a dinosaur:
Nedry hurts the poor dilophosaur’s widdle feelings! He deserves what he gets:
And we learn why there were kids at the dig site, a question that people who are just into the movies enough to thoroughly question the logic in them but not enough to actually make an effort to find the answers to their questions have been asking for a long time:
Plus Mr. DNA gets one of the creepiest lines he could possibly have had—“I’m Mr. DNA. I come from your blood.”
But the novelization also leaves out some of the most memorable parts of the movie, leading me to think that most of said lines were either added at the last minute or ad-libbed (which would be awesome— can you imagine Bob Peck being really into character and surprising everyone, even himself, by saying “Clever girl”?). For instance, Ellie’s line about sexism in survival situations is gone (as well as the part where Malcolm took over instructing Ellie and reading the schematic despite being out of his mind on morphine; thanks for throwing out one of the most bad*** things he does in this, novel):
As is “Clever girl”:
It also leaves out something that bothers me as a Malcolm fan: it just says that Ian ran from the Jeep and got hurt (it doesn’t even mention the flare), therefore negating the extremely important reason why he did it. I realize that this is told largely from Grant’s perspective (which I’ll get to in a little while) and that this wasn’t exactly the time for deep character analysis, but it bothers me nonetheless. It’s a huge part of Malcolm’s characterization that he was completely willing to risk certain death to save two kids he’d known for less than a day, and that he was distracting Rexy with the flare to buy Grant time to get the kids to safety; this could’ve been shown with a quick mention that he was yelling “Get the kids!” while running. But eh, what are you gonna do:
Malcolm isn’t the only one who isn’t shown getting the redemption and character development that the movie gave him. In this version, Lex doesn’t hack the system, everybody does:
But what’s left out doesn’t ruin the book at all. In fact, compared to the JW novelization, I’m thrilled with how this handles the characters, as well as the scary subject matter. The scenes are very suspenseful and well-described, and it isn’t afraid to get a little gory now and then:
It should also be noted that the way it shows Rexy’s comeback is fantastic. The mighty T. rex!:
As for the different types of non-kiddie subject matter, this reminds me a lot of how the JW book handled Claire and Owen’s relationship. For instance, it skips over Malcolm’s incredibly awkward flirting attempt:
But it’s totally fine with showing his far less appropriate line about lifting up the dinosaurs’ skirts. No problem there at all, why on earth would they cut that out:
As I mentioned, this book is very much told from Grant’s perspective.
It shows a lot of really, really sweet moments between him and Ellie, which I would’ve loved to see in the movie. Heck, I would’ve even taken some of this adorable banter if it had happened in JP3:
Interestingly enough, we also discover that it wasn’t that Alan didn’t mind that Ian was hitting on his girlfriend in the car less than 2 feet away, it was that he legitimately didn’t notice. Interpret freely:
By far, though, my favorite parts of the book are the extra bits where we see him connecting with the kids and really growing to love them. If you ask me, he had plenty of development in that department in the movie, but this goes the extra mile with it and I love it.
In addition, Lex’s crush on Alan is played up a lot more, and although it’s cute, I can kind of see why some of it didn’t end up in the movie:
And in the final scene, the book does a great job of capturing the spirit of the movie’s end. You can hear the soft piano theme playing as you read:
So overall, I love this book, even more than I loved the JW one. Its writing was enthusiastic and fun, it kept the heart of the movie and I’m not kidding one bit when I say that I laughed and screeched out loud at the parts that weren’t included in the movie. I don’t know where you could get one besides Ebay, thrift stores or having an amazing friend unexpectedly send one to you, but if you can get your hands on one, this would be a great keepsake for any fan of the first movie. Oh yeah, and kids might like it too.