Tag Archives: Triceratops

Caring For Your Ingen Pygmy Triceratops™

Well, the hype has officially begun– filming for Jurassic World 2 has begun in England, in the Langley Business Centre:

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Considering the story of the movie will likely take place mostly on the mainland, this set could be used for way more scenarios than just someone’s house before they leave for Isla Nublar, so we don’t really have a definite answer for what exactly the Business Centre will have to do with the plot; it looks too small to be a dino-cloning facility or anything, but who knows? That’s the only real JW news we’ve gotten this week (besides more casting and a couple of character names) except of course for this:

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That was posted by Colin Trevorrow on Twitter with the caption “Walking in giant footsteps. #JW2” and I’d venture to guess that the little girl pictured is Lucy (although, since she hasn’t even been cast yet as far as we know, it’s probably just a Lucy stand-in). Whether this scene actually appears in the movie or not (remember that photo of the East Dock sign that he tweeted early in JW’s filming?) it’s a gorgeous photo and got me very, very excited for what’s to come.

Since that’s about all the news there is to report on, I thought I’d do something fun this time, so here’s an informative blog post from a different Raptor Dash in a slightly different time in a different universe– one that has a lot more dinosaurs in it.

Hello everyone, and welcome to the exciting and adorable world of InGen Pygmy Triceratops ownership! Whether you’re only considering adopting one of these little Cretaceous cuties or you’re already a proud owner who’s looking for some tips, I’m glad you’ve decided to look to me for advice (instead of an unapproved third-party source). Although my blog may receive a small amount of funding from the InGen Corporation, you can count on me to impartially show you the ins and outs of how to properly care for the unique pet that’s now a part of your life.

The InGen Corporation is devoted to satisfying all of the companies and people that benefit from its services, and after the regrettable Jurassic World Incident, it made a concentrated effort to use its amazing genetic technology to improve the world around us. In addition to the giant ceratopsians that plow the fields that grow your food, the docile stegosaurs you see in zoos, the velociraptors that serve as the next step in the United States’ military technologies and more, InGen also developed something much more domestic and certainly much cuter– a line of pet miniature dinosaurs that never get big, can never be dangerous and never stop being precious! Pygmy Iguanadons, Pygmy Ankylosaurs, Pygmy Stegoceratops and Pygmy Paralophosaurs are available for purchase at any pet store near you, but my favorites of the line are the Pygmy Triceratops; I love them so much that I adopted three, and today they’re happy to help me show you how to take proper care of your new little trike! Let’s meet the gang!

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On the far left is Jasper, a sweet little girl with a shy side who loves to cuddle and take long naps. Then there’s Sahara– as you can tell, she’s the playful one! Finally there’s Orion, who’s the strong and silent type but still gets excited enough to chase a butterfly every once in a while! It’s highly advisable to adopt at least two at a time, as Triceratops have always been herding animals and will get lonely if they’re left alone at home for too long; two isn’t small enough to form your own cute little herd, though, so the more the merrier. These three are all babies, so they’re tiny and cute as buttons, but I won’t have to worry about them taking up too much space in my dorm room when they get older: the full size of a Pygmy Triceratops™ is about a foot and a half tall (0.5 m) and less than three feet long (1 m). They’ll always have plenty of room to run and play!

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It’s very important to only feed your Pygmy Triceratops™ with certified InGen Health Blend Baby Triceratops Chow. This special food was engineered specifically for the genetically-engineered bodies of little Pygmy Triceratops and provides them with all the nutrients they need in their diet. Look how eager Orion is for dinner time! You can choose to feed them separate meals like you would a cat or dog, but Triceratops were grazing herbivores back in Cretaceous times, and their modern reincarnations still have traces of that instinct. Therefore it might make your little pets happy if you purchased a small trough or spread the food out among several paper plates throughout the house, allowing your Pygmy Triceratops™ to munch whenever they please. Remember to feed them about half to three-quarters of a cup of food per day– you don’t want them getting too chubby!

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If your trike’s been good and deserves a special treat, give them some Ingen Pygmy Triceratops YumYum Pellets! Made from sweet-tasting fruit, your little ones will love them! Just make sure you give them out equally– you can see how eager my babies are to get at them.

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The only thing Pygmy Triceratops™ love more than treat time is playtime! They’re not the most active animals– pick up a Pygmy Paralophosaur™ if you want a dino that’ll run and play with you every day– but they certainly love to hug and bat around their stuffed animals. Jasper and Orion love their stuffed penguin because of how soft (and easy to chew) it is, and Sahara is enamored with the stuffed triceratops that my friend Alex bought me when she visited Jurassic World a few years ago. As you can see, their favorite place to play is on the carpet, probably because its texture reminds them of grass; I would recommend putting down rugs or carpets throughout your home, or keeping your trikes in a carpeted “safe room”if you’re worried about them wandering around and causing trouble when you’re not home.

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Since this is only the first generation of InGen Pygmy Dinosaurs, there are still a few teeny little “bugs” that need to be worked out. In the Pygmy Triceratops’ case, it’s that their herding instinct may be just a bit too strong. As you can see, Sahara is very attached to this stuffed trike and refuses to let it go when play time is over. Judging by the way she clings to it, she probably thinks it’s another member of her herd, or perhaps even her mother. The next iteration of Pygmy Dinosaurs™ most likely won’t have issues like this, but until then, consider giving your pets toys that don’t resemble Triceratops.

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Instead, give them toys that were specifically made to be safe and fun, as well as teaching your Pygmy Triceratops’ growing brains! InGen now makes Pygmy Dinosaur SafeToys, which are fun for your little angels to chew on and are made to look like other herbivorous dinosaurs from the ancient times of the original Triceratops. This brown one is brand new; Orion is sniffing at it with interest, deciding if he likes it more than the red one that he’ll contentedly chew on for hours if I let him. Of course, these are far from the only toys from InGen that your little dino will love to play with. Just look how happy my babies were to see the brand-new Stegoceratops toy from the Hybrids line, designed to teach dinosaurs and owners alike about the marvelous new species developed in InGen’s labs:

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Playing with toys is far from the only way to entertain your Pygmy Triceratops. They love to be carried outside for walks and romps in the grass! Here’s Jasper admiring (and trying to munch on) some pansies:

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It’s important to be careful when taking your Pygmy Triceratops™ outdoors. If they eat anything but InGen’s special food, they’ll get sick, but they don’t know that, so be sure to keep a close eye on your trikes and keep them away from any plants that they might try to snack on.

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Another important thing to note about all Pygmy Dinosaurs™ is that they have a strong aversion to cold weather and vastly prefer warm environments, just like their ancestors; this is why they should spend most of their time in a temperature-regulated indoor environment. Jasper and I came across some snow on our walk, and she refused to go anywhere near it. For those of you who live in cold areas but still want a prehistoric pet of your own, head to your local pet store this fall and adopt an InGen Pygmy Woolly Mammoth!

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After your little ones are all tuckered out from their outdoor adventure, or if you just need to keep them entertained for half an hour, they’ll love watching television, especially cheery children’s shows. Mine always show a lot of interest when I put Dinosaur Train on for them, but that’s probably more because of the bright colors and funny noises than the fact that it’s about dinosaurs.

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At the end of their fun day, give your Pygmy Triceratops™ a nice warm bed to sleep in and a couple of soft toys for them to cuddle with. Because of their nesting instincts, mine love it when I make them a soft, cushy place for them to sink into, usually out of a bathrobe or soft towel. When it’s time to go to sleep, tuck them into their special little sleeping place…

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…and don’t be surprised when they come to your bed anyway, impatiently mooing until you let them go to sleep cuddled up next to you. You are their beloved owner after all, and since you take such good care of your Pygmy Triceratops, they want to give you all their love and affection to say thanks.

Thank you for reading, and I hope my guide helps you to have an amazing time with your wonderful new pet! Join me next week for an inside look at the Oviraptors that are being genetically engineered to be a tastier and more ethical substitute for poultry, and the week after that, when I look at and debunk the most popular Jurassic World conspiracy theories!

New Hybrid Toys!

The New York Toy Fair has begun, and at last we’ve gotten a look at what the majority of the Jurassic World Hybrids toy line will look like! We’ve really only gotten close-ups of a few toys– excluding the Hybrid Rex and Indominus– but what we’ve seen of the rest of them is sufficient. The first and most noteworthy one is one that you’ve most likely seen already on social media. And it’s a popular photo for a reason, because we’re getting human figures at last!

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I really, really like this figure. It appears not to be very poseable– it looks like only the arms and hip joint can move– but I’m in love with the face and the detail on the gun. I seriously hope that it’s somewhere near the size of the Kenner figures, because it looks to be on or near their level of detail and quality– and this is just a prototype. I really hope that Hasbro makes a Claire figure now, because if they do it like they did this one, then we have no reason to worry that they’d screw it up.

Now that we’ve seen the good, it’s time for a glimpse of the bad and the ugly. Treading in familiar territory, here’s what the Indominus Rex with battle armor looks like:

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That’s just weak. If they were going to put a killer dinosaur in awesome combat gear– which they’ve already done with the Basher-Biter Blue– they could have at least made it look like actual armor, instead of taking the same colors of plastic that they used to make the toy and just making a couple of crappy little caps with it. I like the concept going on with the back spikes, and if that kind of thing were extended over the whole body and colored differently, then this could be a much better toy. But it most definitely isn’t, so we’re left with an I. rex that, I just realized, looks like it killed its sibling and is mockingly wearing its skin as a costume. I’m really disappointed in what Hasbro did here.

However, there might be one upside to this– if the red Indominus that I discussed yesterday is indeed being used as a weapon in a Jurassic War scenario, this is the ideal armor to cover up its new modifications and solve the camouflage dilemma. If the animal went into combat wearing armor that just looked like skin (come to think of it, isn’t her skin bulletproof already?) it would be rather clever and possibly negate the stupidity of the added red streaks.

According to the product list we got not too long ago, the Owen is supposed to come with a Hybrid Raptor figure (also visible under the dilo and in the next picture). Here we see him with it and a dilophosaur of some sort:

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Not a lot of the dilophosaur is visible in the picture, so I can’t really judge it (although if it’s like the Wave 2 one, I have a feeling I won’t end up liking it very much). I am, however, a huge fan of the hybrid raptor. It looks more like Charlie than a hybrid to me (which makes me begin to wonder if they cloned Charlie and tampered with her DNA somehow) but it looks like a really good Charlie. It reminds me of the custom Raptor Squad repaints that a lot of talented fans did when the Growler Raptor Squad came out. The detail on her skin looks exquisite, and she’s a huge step up from the other Growler raptors as well as being way more movie-accurate. In fact, I think if I buy just one dinosaur from this line, it’ll be this one.

Now that we’re completely in hybrid territory, saddle up, because it’s about to get weird. Behold Carnoraptor:

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Even if the paint job weren’t lazy, even if it weren’t the blindbag-toy blazing red that so many people despise, even if it weren’t a blatant Growler Raptor repaint with a different head grafted on, I still wouldn’t like this toy. It looks very much like what would happen if a group of scientists genetically fused a carnotaur and a raptor, which means that it looks exactly like a freak of nature that lives in constant pain. The poor thing doesn’t look like it’s even sure how to hold itself upright, and just look at that face. I know I make a lot of “it looks like it’s begging for death” jokes, but that right there is a grimace of agony. Age 4 is a little early to be teaching children about the horrific results of animal experimentation, don’t you think?

Supposedly this is based off of the Carnoraptor from Jurassic World: The Game , which looks like this:

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If the toy had come out looking more like that, with the intricate colors, plausible anatomy and frankly adorable face, I would have been much happier with it. But Hasbro has gone the lazy route, and instead they made a cheap toy that’s just made for the discount shelf at Family Dollar. (It does look a lot like the carnotaur in Disney’s Dinosaur ride, though, so fans of the ride might like it as a keepsake.)

Finally, here’s a spread of the rest of the new dinos that we have pictures of thus far:

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Going from right to left: I can’t see what exactly is up with that Indominus repaint at the far right– although it’s more than likely a variation of the red-streaked one, as is the I. rex in the back– so I can’t tell you my exact opinion on it, although I do see some blue streaks on its sides that I approve of. If they’re going to cover I. rex with colors Holi-style, they may as well go all out with it instead of just putting a few little red paint streaks on her back. I like red, white and blue Indy (very patriotic, Hasbro) much better than I like her white and sorta red.I think the same thing about the I. rex in the back– a lot of red all over her body is better than just a little, and I like the way they did the colors to look sort of like a network of veins.

I don’t see any distinct differences between this Allosaurus and the one that was already released; once we get a closer look, we’ll be able to tell for sure. The next item is the much-anticipated Dilophosaurus Rex, which appears just to be a Basher-Biter Rex with a little brown frill glued to its face. I cannot possibly tell you how little this surprises me. I am thoroughly, completely, fully unsurprised that the D. rex sucks. I am simply overwhelmed by how right I was that Hasbro would take an awesome idea and turn it into a lazy cash grab. I may collapse. Fetch me the smelling salts.

On a happier note, I really do like the new Stegoceratops and Spinosaurus.These toys are also based on the JW mobile game, and as you can see, they’re very accurate to it:

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I like the funky-colored version of Stegoceratops (and Owen probably will too). The extra horns are a nice touch, too, and make me wonder if some Styracosaurus DNA has been added to Stego’s genetic code; if it has, then it’s now a hybrid of Stegosaurus and the scientifically-verifiable coolest ceratopsid to ever exist. I also like the purple-and-red Spino–purple really is her color– and I’m going to like it even better if it’s not just a repaint of the notorious Zombie Spino from the first Basher-Biter line.

Finally, the designers appear to have done the same thing to Ankylosaurus as they did to Indominus– they gave it armor that’s really just a tacked-on extension of what it’s already got on its body. I really don’t see the point of doing that in-universe, although I am willing to forgive if there’s a shot in the movie where a warrior anky impales someone on its back-spike armor. Even without the inherent impracticality of putting armor on a dinosaur that already has an armored body, this toy is thoroughly meh.

That’s all we have for today; I plan to add to this post as the Toy Fair continues and more pictures come in. (As a side note, if you or someone you know took or uploaded the pictures I’ve used here, please let me know so I can give proper credit.) What we have is a mixed bag of great, terrible and just all right. The theme for this line seems to be “Chaos Effect 2.0” and if I had heard that before I got a look at the toys, I would’ve been much more cynical about the line. However, some great things are going to come out of this Hybrids development. If the future of JP toys is detailed, colorful and mostly high-quality, then sign me up.

Update: Two more pictures came in! The first one is confusing! Look on the far left:

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That looks to me like it’s just a version of the Wave 1 Indominus toy with a slightly darker back. What’s the purpose? Why is her back darker, is she camouflaging into the night? Is there anyone out there who will actually buy another of the same toy simply because there’s a little bit more grey paint on its back? The world may never know.

We also got another picture of the Owen figure. No, not the face or anything. It’s of dat butt:

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Thanks to Scified for the new pictures.

Update: From the extremely angry thread on 4chan’s /toy/ on the subject, here’s another angle on the slow-motion disaster known as Carnoraptor:

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It has a yellow belly, which echoes the dinosaur from the mobile game that it’s designed after and which, I suppose, possibly makes it about 5% better. Also, it’s not a Basher-Biter, it’s a Growler. Hasbro will sell these things for a minimum of 15 dollars. We live in the apocalypse.

Update: From 16bit.com, we have a plethora of new photos. They’re all new angles on the toys we’ve seen before, but to me, the first three of them are the most important. In the photo above of the 7 or 8 Basher-Biters, I assumed the Carnoraptor on the left was just the Growler we see above, but it turns out that this particular hybrid is getting both a Basher-Biter and a Growler:

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Even though its joints are visible and its plastic is shinier, even though it has a giant screw hole in its neck and appears to be doing the Nae Nae, I still like this better than the Growler version. Its colors are more varied and faithful to the mobile game, its anatomy is better and more balanced, and it looks a lot more poseable. I still don’t consider it good enough to buy unless Hasbro makes some improvements on the prototype, but while this isn’t a great toy, at least it isn’t as terrible as its counterpart.

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Now that we can see enough of the dilophosaur toy to judge it, I think it’s a serious improvement on the Wave 2 dilo. While the questionable sculpt doesn’t seem to have been improved, the colors definitely have; not only are they more nuanced, they’re also far more movie-accurate, especially the frill and face. It could just be the lighting, but the green color could stand to be a bit darker. Other than that, though, Hasbro’s made significant enough changes to the toy that it’s actually worth the $15 this time.

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OK, well, I officially retract my previous statement about this being a good-looking toy. From above, it looked like an I. rex with red streaks and an undercurrent of blue– not the absolute most attractive thing in the world, but worse color schemes could have been chosen. Now, though, this is undebatably an I. rex that has just waded through a waist-high pool of its own feces. I have absolutely no idea what possessed the toy designer to  add that color to its lower half out of all the colors in the world, but it could seriously be argued that the awful vomit-brown even ruins the toy. I’m not even going to dignify this with a “walked through one big pile of s**t” joke.

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Diliphosaurus Rex is still a huge cop-out, and I still see no noticeable difference in the Allosaur. Also, the red I. rex seems to have puce smeared on its hands and feet as well, although from this angle, it looks more like gold; I don’t find that to be much of a good design choice either, but it’s way better than baby-barf brown. Moving on.

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Originally I had thought that the new Anky armor was brown with green spikes, but it appears to be made entirely of a shiny, metallic green. My opinion on it still stands– this is really only worth buying if you didn’t get the Wave 1 toy to begin with. (Or if you find a box in the discount aisle at Kmart, where someone stole the dinosaur but left the armor. I’ve seen that happen with My Little Pony toys, and it’s the reason why I own so many little purple dogs and suitcases.)

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This one isn’t red and purple as I said it was yesterday– it’s red and blue, and therefore more faithful to JW:TG. I’m OK with that particular change, but I don’t understand the need for gold to be smeared all over the toys’ appendages (will the next movie involve dinosaur attacking Vegas?). I’m also disappointed that the sculpt hasn’t changed, even though the colors make it look slightly less zombie-ish than the Wave 1 Spino. Oh well– at least it was made better in some capacity.

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Finally, we have Margaritaville-Colored Stegoceratops, and I see absolutely nothing wrong with it. This is the second-best Stegoceratops after the Wave 1 version, in my opinion. Plus, look at that self-confident little smirk on its face. Our new god is safe and sound.

More Cosplay & Dinosaur Behavior

This week, I got the opportunity to cosplay Ellie with a friend, who did Malcolm!

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That awesome girl is my friend Breezy, and after we did our photo shoot we went to see Jurassic World again. This was my fourth time seeing it, and even now I’ve noticed a few new things. Most of them had to do with the way the animals behaved, but not all of them. For instance, I’m entirely sure that, in the background and softly enough that you’d have to be listening very closely to hear it, someone dropped an F-bomb during the pteranodon attack scene. It was during a sweeping overhead shot of the attack, I think it was just after Zara’s death and just before Claire and Owen showed up, and no one believed me about it but it happened, dang it. I know that a couple of people who showed up as extras during the movie’s filming are on the Jurassic Park Legacy forums; if whoever was responsible for the Jurassic Park franchise’s sole “f***” happens to be reading this, then I congratulate you, sir (the voice sounded a lot like a man). You’ve made history. And by the way, speaking of pteranodons, I saw some sexual dimorphism going on with those animals. There were some red-tinted and blue-tinted beaks on them, and the different colors were most visible when the animals were flying upwards or swooping toward the camera. I don’t know whether the red-beaked pteranodons that were prominently featured in the movie’s marketing were male or female, though. I’ll leave that to the gender-studies majors.

It’s been hotly debated for a while among fans and critics (although the two have different reasons for debating it), but I really wonder what Indominus could have said to the raptors to make them turn on Owen so quickly. They had about a full minute’s worth of conversation, which isn’t that long, so what could Indy have said? It isn’t the fact that she turned them on Owen that bothered me; Owen and the raptors didn’t have a deep enough loyalty that the girls didn’t try to chase Owen and attack him toward the end of their first scene together, or that Owen could trust them not to get near him if he left the walkway during their normal training. I just wonder how Indy could have convinced them so fast, especially since it only took her a minute to reverse a lifetime’s worth of imprinting and training. I don’t know exactly how the raptors’ language works, so I don’t know if they have a “dictionary” where very specific sounds mean certain things. I do have a hypothesis, though—Indy could basically have said, “These people are easy food. They confined you your whole lives and kept you from hunting. Now you can hunt, so there’s some free snacks behind you. Go get ‘em!”

If we assume that at least some sounds in the raptors’ language can mean certain things—clicks could mean something negative, chirps could be an order to attack, for example—then they would have words to denote certain experiences and feelings that happen often enough that words to describe them would be necessary. It follows, then, that the raptors would have “words” or ways of communicating the feelings of hunger, the presence of prey and the feeling of confinement (with the resultant anger). The girls were locked up in those head-cages for long periods of time, so they probably came up with a “word” to communicate the feeling of “I’m locked up and I can’t move, I really hate this.” That word/feeling is probably what Indominus used to turn the raptors’ feelings around. She definitely had that experience of being confined, and since she was somehow fluent in the raptors’ language (which is a conundrum of its own; she could be intelligent enough to pick up the basics of a language after hearing it a few times, though, so maybe she heard the Squad talking in the jungle and got the hang of their language) she may very well have used that word that they associated with being locked up, and then said that the locked-up feeling came from Owen and Barry. Combining that with the words for “there’s easy prey behind you” and “if you follow me, I can help you get free and/ or bring you to more prey”, Indy could have won them over. Of course the raptors resisted and talked back to her (and there’s still the issue of how she became the new alpha that quickly), but I don’t know, maybe she’s just really charismatic. I’m saying that Indominus could have changed the Raptor Squad’s minds by using their language to say that Owen and Barry confined them and that the humans would make a good meal. I may not be right, but considering that nobody who worked on the movie has said anything about the scene and that it had to have some logic behind it, my guess is as good as any.

Speaking of the raptors, I think there might be a good reason for Hoskins’ blood spattering on the wall when he died, other than just for the horror of it. The raptor who killed him, Echo, probably killed him in a way that raptors usually don’t, and that probably resulted from her inexperience in killing. Assuming that the Squad has never killed anything other than a bunch of pigs (or at least that it’s been quite a while since they have), they would definitely be able to take down a human, but not as quickly and efficiently as the raptors in the other movies. The other films’ raptors had been able to kill people with little more than a sickle claw to the intestines, but these raptors had only one opportunity to kill humans in their lives—during the jungle attack scene—and they only had the chance to kill two or three people each, tops. That probably wasn’t enough to perfect the murderous arts, so when Echo was killing Hoskins, she might have swiped his jugular vein (or at least somewhere in the throat area) instead of going straight for the stomach; that would be because she didn’t know that just a slash to the intestines would do the trick. She didn’t ever get the chance to learn that there were cleaner ways to kill a villain, and so blood got everywhere. (Someone on the JPL forums said something like that last sentence, but I don’t know if they added the inexperienced-at-killing part.)

On a final raptor-related note, I think I found some good proof for the “Delta is still alive” (it actually concerns Echo being alive– in the canon set up by the junior novelization, Echo was the raptor thrown by Indominus, so she’s the one who’s most likely to have survived) theory that’s circulating and that I desperately want to believe because Blue is my baby and I can’t live with it if she’s all alone. Someone would probably have to record and look closely at the final fight scene’s audio to prove this, but I think you can hear Echo making noise at the very end of the scene. When the I. rex attacked Echo, she threw her off-screen to the right, and we didn’t see where she went or what happened once she landed. After Rexy and Blue were free to leave, though, Blue ran off and immediately headed right, to the area where Echo was just tossed. (Can I note, by the way, that Blue was completely free for the first time in her life and she could have done anything she wanted, and the first thing she thought to do was to run and make sure her sister was okay?) A few seconds later, we heard a chirp that sounds just like the one that Blue let out a minute before—and then we heard a much lower, different sound, but it was a sound that was definitely coming from a raptor. Again, you’d have to listen pretty closely to hear it over the heartwarming music, but it sounded a lot like Blue was talking to Echo and Echo responded. It’s not unlikely that Echo survived anyway—Blue got up and was totally fine after Indominus threw her in a similar way—but I still can’t wait to get the DVD and turn the sound way up to prove this.

I also noticed some interesting things going on with the Gyrosphere Valley animals. First, although I don’t know if Jurassic World’s scientists were trying to recreate an entire ecosystem like Hammond tried to, but some aspects of a growing ecosystem were showing up. For instance, there were little white birds flying around the valley and landing on the dead apatosaurs; I think those guys may have had a symbiotic relationship with the apatosaurs (like sharks and lampreys, or elephants and whatever birds land on them all the time). If they do, that’s a pretty good sign that at least some of the local, “more natural” wildlife is adjusting to the dinosaurs’ presence, and that the dinos are integrating into Nublar’s ecology—and after 22 years, it would be a bit of a problem if they didn’t. And on the topic of two systems integrating, I wonder what kind of relationship with the Gyrospheres that the herbivores have? The animals sort of milled around and did their thing while the pods cruised around, but when Zach sped their vehicle up, a lot of dinosaurs ran right alongside it. It’s possible that the animals just see the Gyrospheres as large, odd dinosaurs, or as things that their keepers arrive in; I’m thinking it’s the former. Since stegosaurs, triceratops and parasaurs are herding animals, they might see the Gyrospheres at least partially as animals and members of different herds. If the dinosaurs saw them that way, it would make sense for them to run when the pods “run”, because they’d be following the other “animal”’s instincts and running from what they assume to be a threat. In other words, they might run when the Gyrospheres do because they think that something must be chasing another animal, and so they need to run away too. That doesn’t tell us how they interact with the vehicles in other contexts, but I think it’s an interesting idea that the animals might have integrated with the rest of the theme park that way, and I’d love to explore it further.

I wonder, too, what the fact that the animals were fighting a lot means. Those two parasaurs got into a fight for seemingly no reason (I liked how accurately their fight was portrayed; the animals trumpeted at and tried to intimidate each other long before they got physical, just like animals today do) and in the first control room scene, someone is saying over a walkie-talkie that the “triceratops are going at it again”. If those two separate species are picking lots of fights for no immediately visible reason, then it might mean that mating season has come to the island. That raises a lot more questions. How often does mating season come—do the animals mate more often because they aren’t sure how long they have to live (if they do, it means that the animals’ lives aren’t nearly as peaceful as they’re made out to be)? What happens when the dinosaurs lay eggs—do park employees just swoop in and grab the eggs so that they can hatch them in the Creation Lab? If the paras’ and trikes’ mating seasons are at roughly the same time, does that mean that the different species cooperate especially well? Of course, I could be totally wrong about this. The animals might all be neutered. The Valley might not be anything like a real, full ecosystem (it probably isn’t entirely like one, what with keepers coming in and providing medical care, introducing animals that have outgrown the petting zoo, etc.) and even if it were like one, it would be unlike anything else in the wild, since the park’s zookeepers routinely come in and prevent the presence of any infants in the herds. Because of both of those, there might not even be a need for mating seasons in the Valley anymore. Those fights could be for different reasons—establishing territory or upheavals in the animals’ hierarchies, for instance. But if the fights going on at the time of the movie’s events actually are over females, then we might have a rough sense of the way that the park’s herbivores live their lives. They might actually be kind of normal.

I could go on and speculate all day about dinosaur pack dynamics and the way the captive animals interacted with their surroundings all day (can you tell that I like paleontological behavior study? I don’t know if I made that clear) but I’ll spare you any further rambling and add a final thing that I noticed—Jurassic World continued the “lucky pack” thing. Sarah had her lucky pack that saved her life in Lost World, Billy had a lucky pack that saved his in JP3, and now Grey’s had his life rescued by a bag too. During the scene where the I. rex is attacking the three guys in the gift shop, she grabs at Gray’s fanny pack instead of his body, thus saving him from a toothy demise. (I know, I know it took me four viewings to notice that, but before I thought she was just grabbing at his pants.) So CinemaSins was right; the Lucky Pack lives on.

Well, thanks for reading yet another of my Jurassic World-related essays. Next, hopefully, I’ll do the first Jurassic World-centered Fanfics You Should Be Reading!

Lego Jurassic World Part 1

Welcome to a series that I hope extends for a long time because I hate it when there’s nothing going on and I can’t post at least twice a week: my Lego Jurassic World review! For the first few posts I’ll be reviewing the game’s cutscenes, and after that I’ll start on gameplay. I know everyone’s way more excited about gameplay (probably because of the chance to make your own hybrid dinosaurs and everything) but I’ve been hyped for the cutscenes for quite a while. I can’t wait to watch and review all of them bit by bit, because it should be cute and hilarious.

From having watched this ahead of time, I got one thing clear in my head: My expectations were too high. I know, I know, I just said I was really excited about it and I’ve been saying that this will be the best game ever for a while, but I set the bar too high. I don’t usually play Lego games because I am not a gamer in any sense of the word, so I didn’t know what to expect in terms of the animation and stuff, and so I ended up expecting something on the level of The Lego Movie. I expected the level of detail and intricacy– both in the animation and the storyline– to be on the level of the movie and not a regular video game, which was a mistake. If I sound disheartened during this review, that’s why. Otherwise, though, the game met and exceeded my expectations! Let’s take a look, starting with the first movie. Keep in mind that these are just the cutscenes, so it’ll jump around sort of abruptly, and I’m really just reviewing the basic outline and the stuff I particularly like.

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We begin with the raptor-loading scene, of course, and with two recurring trends: hot dogs and the deliberate avoidance of anything scary or suspenseful. The first is silly but excusable, and I didn’t mean the second as a bad thing. It’s a LEGO game, we aren’t here for the Jaws treatment.

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The hot dog thing was because instead of Jophery’s arm being graphically devoured, the hot dog gets chowed on by the raptor instead. This is how the whole game is– silly, based off the source material with a couple of alterations, and food-based. Anyway, I don’t feel bad for Jophery’s hot dog. He should have been having a churro in the first place. That’s one of the official Jurassic World foods now, dontcha know? (Now that I think about it, I’m severely disappointed in the lack of churro mentions in Jurassic World. We could’ve had Churro Guy instead of Margarita Guy.)

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No yellowed, poorly-kept teeth on Muldoon. I am disappoint.

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There’s a short scene of these two at the dig site. I’m glad their outfits are correct and not just the ones they wear for the rest of the movie; also, does Alan say “No, not velociraptor” at any point during the movie? He says it here and it sounds authentic (a lot of these characters, such as Muldoon, are voiced entirely through clips from the movie) but I can’t remember that particular line. And someone should make that Paleontology Assistant lady into an OC. Technically she’s canon, so I wouldn’t be as annoyed as I am by other ~~super speshul assistant~~ OCs.

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I had to commemorate the hand-holding. A moment of silence for this beautiful, now-sunken ship.

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Hammond is, of course, voiced entirely by Richard Attenborough. The scene where he meets the two paleontologists is very rushed, but a lot of things are in this game; it plays very much on the assumption that you’re at least a moderate JP fan and that you know what happens in the movie by heart. And if you’ve spent $50 on a Lego JP game, this is a pretty fair assumption to make.

There are a couple of cutscenes that we’ve seen already and that I’ve consequently already reviewed. The helicopter scene is one of them, so I think it’s safe to mostly skip past it. Same with the brachiosaur scene, except for this bit with Lego Gennaro:

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The eyebrows live!

A lot of iconic lines (Hammond’s “In 48 hours, I’ll be accepting your apology”, Malcolm’s “Don’t you mean extinct?”) and scenes (the amber mine scene, Nedry and Dodgson’s meeting) are dropped; again, because they assume you already know the movie by heart. That’s fortunate, because without the setup for Nedry’s plot, not all of this would make sense. We’re really here for the jokes. Case in point, a minute of witty banter on the stairs is replaced by dead silence and a guy with a fossil stuck on his head:

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The Mr. DNA video bears very little resemblance to the original:

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That’s another assumption I made that turned out to be wrong. From the trailers, I thought the whole game would be a painstaking homage to the original, crafted by hardcore JP fanboys fueled by Mountain Dew and a burning desire for fame in their Jurassic Park forum circles. However, although I don’t know much about the game’s backstory so I can’t tell you about the creators personally, this doesn’t seem to be entirely the case. It’s a tribute to the movies, sure, but it’s not a recreation of the film like I thought it would be. These people took liberties, and there’s nothing wrong with that, they just went for the easy route sometimes by animating things in simpler graphics instead of taking the time to perfectly recreate these iconic moments (which isn’t true all of the time; for instance, the Jeep attack scene). In other words, the creators valued the jokes and wider audience appeal more than the approval of the movies’ serious fan base. And, again, there’s nothing wrong with that– not being screen-accurate doesn’t detract from the game’s overall value. It’s just not what I had my money on.

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It’s also disappointingly sparing with the Malcolm speeches, although it captures his looks of disgust beautifully well. I haven’t watched much of the Jurassic World cutscenes yet, but I really hope it does the same with Masrani. Here, by the way, is Malcolm’s idle animation. When he doesn’t have anyone around to flirt with, he just kind of stands around rolling water drops off his hands and grinning like a maniac about it. Just watch this loser:

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I feel like I should also mention that the game follows a storied tradition among bad fanfiction writers– it has him declare that things are “the essence of chaos”, even when the term barely applies and the phrase is sort of inappropriate for the situation (in this case, a man about to be viciously torn apart by raptors). Congratulations, Lego guys. Come by later to collect your FF.net membership card:

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But they did do something great in this scene. They recreated one of my favorite shots from the trilogy:

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Everyone else is horrified, but Hammond– Hammond can do nothing but smile and whisper, “But the fun is only beginning.”

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I have made it my personal mission to document every hand grab/ shoulder touch/ other bodily contact between Alan and Ellie in this game, simply because we haven’t had any new canon interactions between them in years since JP3 destroyed our dreams. Anyway, shoulder touch.

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The Lego kids are very adorable, and they show up during the raptor feeding for the sake of time. This means that the Hammonds have a delightful family reunion and share a hug while, for all they know, a man is being torn limb from limb right behind their backs.

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Just like in the movie, Malcolm reaches out and holds the kids back to make sure they’re safe. I don’t have any feelings about that at all. None. Stop looking at me like that.

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The car-flirting scene is cut down on, possibly in an attempt to play Ellie up as even more of an action heroine than she already is, not someone who just lets people hit on her in Jeeps. Actually, I just wanted to show this because of Alan’s (who, faithfully to the source material, manages to completely ignore the fact that a stranger is hitting on his girlfriend a foot away) expression.

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The triceratops scene is adorable and full of the original scene’s wonder…

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…until it isn’t.

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D’aww, happy ending!

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Grant, Muldoon and Malcolm are voiced entirely with the original movie’s clips, Ellie’s voice is a blend of a voice actress (who does an amazing job) and Laura Dern, and the jury’s still out on Arnold and Nedry. If their voices are indeed impersonators, wow. Hats off to them. I mean, I don’t know how lucrative the profession of “Wayne Knight impersonator” is, but you could probably make a good few bucks with this kind of thing and by posing for pictures in Times Square.

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You never quite know when Ellie will show up behind you, but when she does, she will be as silent as the breeze. She will stand behind you, completely still. She will wait. She will watch.

That’s all I have for now because I’m hoping to drag this out for kind of a while, but rest assured that I plan to actually follow through with this review. Next week we’ll get to the T. rex attack scene!

Jurassic Park: Myrtle Beach

That’s right, folks, it’s another post where I can show you my vacation photos and get away with it because it’s relevant to the blog’s theme! First, in case you’re not interested in seeing my vacation pictures (I wouldn’t blame you, although they are relevant to Jurassic Park, I promise) I ran into some new Jurassic World merchandise at Target the other day.

First, I saw the beginning of toy wave 2, the Dilophosaur Growler:

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All in all, unless you’re a hardcore Dilophosaur fan or you’re determined to buy every single JW toy, I wouldn’t really recommend getting this. The paint job is meh, the head sculpt is sub-par and it’s got serious frill problems. Seriously, this thing’s frill just flops around every which way– I had to lay it on its back to take this picture, because the frill just wouldn’t stay outward. It has the loosest hinges imaginable, and if you’d want to pose a Dilo, having its frill out would be pretty much a requirement. But you can’t do that with this one.

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The growling feature and the fact that you can make it spit venom might add fun points, but the overall look of the thing and the frill issue are such big problems that even I, a huge Dilo fan myself, am not going to bother with it. If they come out with a holographic Dilo toy, though, I may reconsider.

I also saw some JW tag packs:

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There’s a variety of tags to choose (or not, because they’re blindbags) from, including humans, dinosaurs and costume tags, whatever the heck those are. I didn’t buy any so I can’t give you a review, but if you ask pretty much anyone else on JPLegacy they’ll probably give you a good answer. Everyone seems to be going ape over these things. Oh well, whatever makes you happy. I also snagged one of the blindbag tubes of three mini-dinos; I haven’t taken adequately stupid pictures yet so I won’t post them, but I am now the proud owner of a teeny-tiny Dimorphodon, Pteranodon and Pachycephalosaurus (which apparently makes me a racist). I’ll get to those little guys on a slower news day.

Also, look at what the official JP page showed us the other day!!!!

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How awesome is that?! I’m so happy we got to see a high-def shot of the back cover, and I’m even more glad that the photo isn’t just a stock image from the Lost World promotional campaign! I especially love the dragon curve on the back and that he’s decided to start wearing all black again (he wore some brown and green in Lost World, which I find unacceptable). And if this is what he looks like in-universe at the time of the events, then he still looks pretty good (I know I’d have a few gray hairs if I’d gone to Sorna, but he doesn’t seem to) and it’s great to know that he’s doing okay. And probably rolling in dough, too!

The mystery of the Post-Its has been solved; it’s Lowery’s handwriting, and it looks like he took notes on the book as he read. I can see that he wrote something about hybrids, “the chaos”, and “Pepsisaurus” down. I can’t really decode the rest, so I’ll leave that to the more hardcore Lowery fans among us. Speaking of which, if anyone feels like writing a fanfic that involves Lowery being a squealing fanboy when he gets the chance to meet Malcolm, I will be forever indebted to you.

All right, here’s my Myrtle Beach adventure! The recurring theme on the trip was Being Dinosaur Trash, which I feel is adequately demonstrated by the fact that I felt the need to photograph this hotel sign:

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There was an exhibition there about animatronic, “lifelike” dinosaurs. I did not attend it, mostly because it cost $25 that I didn’t feel like coughing up, because I didn’t bring the cosplays that I’d want to take pictures in, and because I would likely have spent the entire time complaining because of how innaccurate/ shrink-wrapped the dinosaurs were.

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“Kill… me…”

But I did get a glimpse at one, namely their T. rex animatronic. I have to say, it looked so much like Rexy that I might have paid the admission price for a picture with her if I’d had my Ellie cosplay on:

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Everyone, I have a wonderful announcement to make. Friends, I have been so privileged and honored as to visit the home of the one and only Margarita Guy. Yes, I have, and the proof is before your eyes:

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This is the inside of the blessed location. I have walked in the shadow of Margarita Guy and felt the warmth of his light:

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A giant, rotating hurricane with shark fins inside, or The Most Florida Thing Ever.

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His mode of transport, akin to a magic carpet.

Fangirling aside, Margaritaville is actually the official restaurant of Jurassic World. For your enjoyment, here’s the full JW-ified menu:

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Next, I got to hit a Planet Hollywood. I know that isn’t too exciting, but I really love visiting them, it’s one of the things I get way too hyped up about. I got to see not one, but two items worn by Queen Geena Davis. I came close to touching one, and three of my most recent wounds healed instantly:

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I didn’t look at where this came from, and honestly I think it’s a lot better presented free of context:

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And I also got to see a uniform used in the beginning of the first Jurassic Park movie. I don’t know whether it was Jophery’s or not, but I could care less.

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Here’s me in front of it. I may have been crying.

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Next, I got to visit a magical place: Jurassic Golf, a Jurassic Park-themed mini-golf course. It was an awesome experience, and although the theming wasn’t everywhere, it was still fantastic.

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Spot the glaring innaccuracy, it’s fun for the whole family:

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Some dinosaurs were in better condition than others:

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“MY NAME IS RALPHIE AND I LIKE POTATO CHIPS.”

But the ones that were good were really, really good. For instance, the Dilophosaur:

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This was the centerpiece of the course, and although it didn’t move, it was downright awesome to be near:

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There was also a very cool raptor:

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I finally got the chance to Prattkeep with something! As I said, I didn’t have any JP cosplays on hand, so I just Disneybounded Lex instead and I think it turned out pretty well.

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This was the back of a “stick your face in the hole in this wall for a picture” thing, but I still like to think it was a wooden-shack bathroom:

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And, perfectly, someone put Owen’s name in the cement on the way out.

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Finally, something truly amazing happened. My mother has a super-power, and it it that she can win anything from an arcade claw machine. Seriously, the woman is uncanny. So we were looking all over for a boardwalk with arcades that she could gamble try her skills in, and we didn’t find one until a few hours before we left. But when we did find a good one, what did we see upon first walking in but a Raw Thrills JP arcade game (more on that in a minute) and this:

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Upon seeing it, I literally jumped up and down and screeched. Mom tried to grab one while I watched breathlessly. And sure enough, five tries later, look what fell into my arms:

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Her name is Indy, and she lives to snuggle kill and destroy. I will hug her and love her and name her George. She currently resides in my bed along with my Rexy and Mosa plushies, and I’ll do one of my Stupid Toy Photo Shoots once I figure out enough things to do with the three of them.

My mother also took some pictures of the screen while I was playing the Raw Thrills arcade game. Here’s the exterior of the game unit. If the pictures are a little blurry, sorry, it’s because I was so excited that I was jumping up and down, screaming loud enough to wake the whole coastline:

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It has a pretty cool console thing on the inside:

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And here’s the main control panel. Note that you’re not actually shooting the dinosaurs, you’re tranquilizing them. That sorta makes you wonder what happens to the dinos you freeze and then explode, but we’re not here for an ethics experiment:

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The game itself is tons of fun. It’s $1 a pop and 50 cents to continue a game, but it’s well worth the money. The objective is your basic “escape dinosaur island by shooting everything in the face” and the graphics aren’t legendary, but the game is so much fun that they don’t need to be. It’s a blast, plain and simple. Here are some shots from the first level, which has you evading attacks by Pteranodon, Archaeopteryx, raptors and others. This one was set in the ruins of the first park, which was awesome:

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But that’s only two levels out of, I think, somewhere around 12. I also played 2.5 of the T. rex levels, which were set on Sorna. They were even more awesome than the one I just showed you, and they included a sign that confirmed to me what kind of JP fans designed this game. The T. rex/ Spino fight is re-enacted in this one, except at the end, Rexy picks Spino up by the neck and holds her in the air, shakes her around and then throws her right off a cliff. It’s truly a thing of beauty that you need to see to believe.

Oh yeah, and there was a beach in there somewhere, too:

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Jurassic World Review #3

IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN JURASSIC WORLD BY NOW AND AREN’T PLANNING TO BEFORE IT LEAVES THEATERS, I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU’RE DOING ON SUCH A HARDCORE JP FAN BLOG. BUT ANYWAY, JURASSIC WORLD SPOILERS!

I’m back! Sorry for the break in posting, especially after such a momentous event in the fandom. I have a few post ideas queued up, I’m working on some actual art (not just mutilated coloring pages, but I should probably do another round of those now that I think about it) and I’ve gotten a story request for I think the second time in my writing career, so this blog won’t die, I promise. I saw Jurassic World again the other day (and some people on JPL have been seeing it every day since it came out; you guys are a true inspiration) so since I’ve already written my structured, 3,000+ word review and then a 2,000+ word follow-up to it, here are some assorted things that I noticed this time around.

· During the raptor jungle attack, Barry hid inside a log while Blue attacked him from above. Said raptor, who was equipped with a sickle claw AKA one of the most effective weapons ever devised by nature, was unable to puncture the log and feast upon her former trainer, but that’s an issue for another day. His hiding inside a fallen tree while dinosaurs attacked him was probably a reference to how Sarah Harding hid in a hollow log to avoid the angry stegosaur herd in Lost World.
· In Wu’s secret lab was a screen, which showed 3D models of I. rex, Stegoceratops and some other kind of pachy-looking abomination. Hoskins and Wu talked about a “deal” that the two of them had on a couple of occasions, and Hoskins said, “Our little side project is about to get shot in the arm.” Later, in his final scene, he talked about making a smaller I. rex to use in combat and inferred that there was I. rex DNA in the cooler of embryos that he had his men smuggle out. Does this mean that there was Stegoceratops DNA in the cooler as well, and/ or that the animal was part of the “side project”? If it does, then that means there’s a real possibility of a flesh-and-blood Stegoceratops in Jurassic Park 5. Lord have mercy on us all.
· In the secret lab scene when everyone was looking at Wu’s various experiments, one shot showed Gray looking at a little, fluorescent lizard that was either a species that I’ve never seen before or some variation on a Dimetrodon. If it wasn’t, the sail made it look just like one. I, for one, support the presence of glowy Dimetrodon in future sequels. Imagine one of those animals not giving a single ****, but shimmering while they did it.
· I can’t believe I didn’t notice this until the second viewing, but not only is Margarita Guy hilarious, he’s also played by Jimmy Buffett. Of course he’d prioritize the safety of his margaritas:

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· In the beginning of the movie, Claire’s clothing really evoked John Hammond, but as the movie went on and she was wearing a tied shirt and blue camisole, she looked a lot more like Ellie Sattler; that was basically the way her character changed, from someone detached and not concerned with the real world to an action star who would do anything to protect the people she loved. That makes her outfit brilliant on two levels, since Trevorrow also said that she represents the park and that she got torn up as it did. I could also discuss her heels, but other than her arc’s perceived sexism, that’s all that the general public can say about her character so I’ll let them do the talking.
· I was wrong—Delta, not Charlie, was the raptor who killed Hoskins. Boy, he really let the situation get out of hand, didn’t he? You’d think he’d get a handle on things by that point, but he didn’t and he got justice handed to him.
· I was also wrong about the final fight, as commenter rosa pointed out. I. rex slams Rexy to the ground and prepares to tear into her, but Blue attacks I. rex and provides time for Rexy to get back up.
· Seriously, the Raptor Squad was one of the best parts of the movie and I want one of my own more than ever (but I’d settle for just Blue if it came to that). Everyone else seems to think so too, and people are fangirling about the Squad all over the place. People who normally had just a passing interest in JP are making tributes to and screaming about raptors on the Internet, and it’s a really widespread thing. After all the time that serious Jurassic Park fandom was a really niche thing, Jurassic World is becoming a popular fandom really fast and it’s really surreal to watch. All I can do when people talk about the movie is be like, “You like raptors? I like raptors too! I love raptors! Everybody finally likes this thing I love!
· I still think Echo was the first one to die, but even without the dark lighting, I doubt I’d be able to tell anyway. The raptors’ colors were more in keeping with the original trilogy’s raptor colors, but their lack of distinctive coloration—besides Blue—made it so difficult to tell them apart that I think the JPLegacy forums just got the order of their deaths straightened out a couple of days ago.
· Masrani was much more of a good guy than I remembered, and his corporate greed wasn’t pushed quite so hard. However, I still find it interesting that he could be so enamored with the wonder of the park—and talk about how the key to a happy life is accepting that you’re never in control—while still assuming that they could contain and control this massive killing machine and waiting until it killed a whole troop of mercenaries before doing anything about it. He was wise and conscious of what he was doing while still succumbing to a hunger for money, which is what makes him such a layered and interesting character. Although he went out on a distinctly good-guy note and always kept Hammond’s mistakes in mind, I think his character shows the sinister side of the park (other than, you know, rampaging dinosaurs). Everything’s happy and full of wonder, and the park exists to humble mankind—right up until an asset breaks loose, and then everyone assumes they have all the power in the situation.
· The talk Henry Wu gave to Masrani about tampering with genes to create monsters—“Nothing in Jurassic Park is real, but you didn’t ask for reality, you asked for more teeth!”—was straight out of the first novel and served as great justification against the feather truthers. Masrani didn’t want actual dinosaurs, he wanted what the public thought dinosaurs looked like, and that included scales. Hopefully someone outside the fandom will understand that and spread it around. Scientific justifications like that don’t always reach casual viewers, as exemplified by how the person sitting across the aisle from me in the theater kept mumbling, “Idiots,” under their breath whenever any scientific discussion was brought up on screen.
· The one Gentle Giants Petting Zoo shot that we didn’t see in any of the trailers was of a baby apatosaur licking a little girl’s hand, which instead of the life-changing joy that anyone reading this would experience in such a situation, she replied to with “Yuck!” I assume this is a reference to Lex’s tree scene with the brachiosaur.
· There were some pretty big animals in the petting zoo, most notably the parasaur and stego that were visible in the background. I think one of the set visits (Slashfilm?) said something about this. It seems like another move to bring up guests’ interest (to interest older kids with the babies’ newly developed horns and thagomizers, maybe) but it’s pretty obviously a dumb move considering that a teeny triceratops can’t do much to a little kid that keeps poking it, but a ten-month-old trike with larger horns sure can. Handlers probably protected the kids from anything serious, but it still seems like a big potential safety hazard.
· Another chink in the armor was how the pachycephalosaurs’ tracking implants shorted out when they butted heads. The park’s been open for 17 years, head-butting is a very common behavior among pachys and they still haven’t fixed that glitch? I’m fully aware that I’m preaching to the choir here, but you’d think park management would work on something like Indominus after they, you know, got a handle on keeping the rest of the animals in their paddocks.
· One of my favorite exchanges was when Masrani asked how people were enjoying the park and Claire’s immediate response was, “Well, visitor satisfaction is steady in the low 90s…” Claire, you complete and total dork.
· A lot of people are saying that Rexy’s CGI was mediocre to terrible, but I think it looked okay. Not the greatest, but okay; I liked the way her skin glistened in the final fight scene and how her muscles moved.
· I. rex killed at least six apatosaurs simply by slashing at them with her claws. The claws on her hands are sharp enough to tear through at least three inches of skin, and since the slash across the main dead apatosaur’s throat was probably what did it in, her claws can cut through important body parts/ organs too. In the final fight scene, I. rex slashed Rexy all over, including but not limited to on her neck, across her sides and probably on the legs and chest. I’m not complaining that she got up after going through that—Rexy is a tough mother****er and she’s been through a lot in the past 22 years, she can take this newbie’s clawing attempts—but I do wonder how, in the shot of Rexy roaring over the island the next morning, no scars or wounds from the fight were visible. I could have missed them—like everyone else, I was mostly focused on the pure awesomeness of the final moment—but I looked a little closer this time and didn’t really see any marks. (EDIT: she had a few bloody scars in the final scene.)
· I. rex learned how to kill effectively and she did it very fast. Obviously the humans were easy pickings—we are little more than fleshy Pocky sticks to animals that big, after all—but she killed the apatosaurs pretty quickly, judging by how the area where they were killed was clean, mostly undisturbed and pretty much bloodless. She killed those by slashing at them, or at least that’s what she did to the first one (the one Claire and Owen watched die). She did a sloppy and unsuccessful job with that one, but then she went over the hill and killed five more in a much faster and easier way. She learned from her mistakes. Then, only a little while later, she killed an ankylosaur in the woods. With that one, she just clawed its side once and then twisted its head in her jaws, using exactly the right angle to snap its neck. For an animal who’d never had contact with any other living thing since she ate her sibling, and whose attacks on the humans were basically the first time she’d ever hunted anything in her life, that’s an extraordinarily short amount of time that it took her to master the skill of killing. That’s a testament to just how smart she really is (that amount of problem-solving intelligence probably rivals the raptors’) and makes the rest of her smart actions, like setting the trap in her paddock and clawing out her implant, more believable.
· The spot where I.rex clawed the wild ankylosaur is roughly in the same spot where the Dino Damage wound is on the JW ankylosaur toy. (“Hey kids, you wanna know something cool about your super-awesome ankylosaurus toy? He’s the one that died!”) Also, I can’t stress this enough—Indominus had never seen an anky in her life and she still figured out that she needed to slash its underbelly to kill one within the first few minutes she ever saw one.
· When Owen and Claire are running from the pteranodon flock in the jungle, Owen’s first instinct after running is to yank Claire to the ground and put his arm across her to protect her. It reminded me of Malcolm and Ellie in the Jeep chase scene:

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Actually, knowing Malcolm it’s distinctly possible that he was just trying to make one last pass at Ellie before he died, but if you look at it like he’s putting his arm across her to protect her, that’s what the pteranodon scene reminded me of.
· Another injury I missed was the spot where I. rex clawed out her tracking implant. I didn’t really see any skin missing from her back at any point after that. The piece of meat she clawed off was relatively bloodless, though, so maybe I just didn’t see the wound because it wasn’t messy.
· Hamada’s role in the movie was really, really cut down. In the original script he was Muldoon 2.0, a game warden bad@$$ who kept a wary eye on I. rex. In the final version, he has maybe four minutes of screen time and only one distinct line. Trevorrow also says that Barry’s role was cut down—he talked a few months ago about how he wrote the role specifically for Omar Sy and how the character would be so memorable, but that was not the case in the final movie. He mentioned a scene where Barry speaks French to the raptors and Hoskins pretends to know what he’s saying. The fact that that scene was cut for the final version shows that a lot of Barry’s other memorable parts were probably cut, too.
· When Claire and Owen find the wrecked gyrosphere, we can see dinosaur poop smeared across Claire’s chest, but not how it got there. We knew before the movie came out that the poop scene was cut, and it would have added a lot of unnecessary crude humor to the movie, but I still think it showed more of the funny and spontaneous “I am not one of your damn animals!” Claire that we glimpsed in the shirt-rolling scene at the waterfall. Hopefully it’ll be included as a deleted scene when the DVD comes out.
· There was surprisingly little rude humor overall, except Owen’s terrible attempts at flirting (I did like how he backed off flirting with her after that one scene, though; if he didn’t, then all the sexism complainers would actually have some good points). One of the investors in Claire’s tour also made a vaguely sexual hand gesture, but that was it.
· I really don’t think I. rex was killing entirely for sport like Owen said she was. With the ACUs it was partly self-defense, but when she was out in the valley, I. rex had no idea where she was or what these new animals around her were, and she may even have killed out of fear or the desire to establish the place as her territory. She wasn’t running around like a hyper little kid, slashing like crazy and screaming “WHEEEE!” like “killing for sport” implies, is what I’m saying.
· Zara’s line when she’s on the phone, “No, he isn’t having a bachelor party, all his friends are animals” pertains to her fiancée (Trevorrow said recently that she was about to get married before she died, to a man named Alex if I heard her line in the movie correctly; her death just got much sadder). I’m pretending, though, that it applies to Owen. Try to tell me for one second that Owen wouldn’t hold a bachelor party with the Raptor Squad as the only guests if he were to get engaged before the events of the movie. They’d all have steaks and Owen would play fetch with them, and he’d have too much champagne and put little party hats on them and just giggle about that for an hour.
· I. rex’s ability to sense infrared radiation came from her snake DNA, which Claire says but I somehow missed the first time. Considering that the different types of reptile DNA used in the different raptors influenced their appearances so much, I wonder what snake species Wu used when he made her and what other characteristics came with it. It probably helped her stand still for long periods of time, at least.
· Throughout the whole movie, Indominus never seemed to be affected by a single bullet or, other than when she got hit by that flamethrower, any weapon at all. I think I was right about the bulletproof skin. Even Rexy’s teeth didn’t appear to draw any blood until the very end.
· Zach’s transition from annoyed to loving brother, and the progression of the boys’ relationship, was a lot less rushed than I remember. Zach grudgingly becomes nicer in the gyrosphere scene, and he isn’t really in full-on protection mode until the Mobile Veterinary Unit scene.
· Overall it made his character more endearing to fans, and it was a nice way to show what the general public response was now that everyone in-universe knew what happened during the first movie, but I still think Lowery’s original Jurassic Park T-shirt was a little insensitive in-universe. If he wanted to worship a “real” dinosaur park that was based around Hammond’s vision and didn’t need hybrids, why couldn’t he have been the same way about Jurassic World when it first opened? When the new park started out, it was basically a more high-tech version of the original park and featured only “real” dinosaurs, plus nobody (to our knowledge) had their lives ruined or ended there. He could have been a hipster about this park—and the park had obviously changed a lot since it first opened—and it wouldn’t have seemed to Claire or anyone else that he was glorifying a serious incident that caused a lot of deaths. Of course, he might have only come to work at the park recently and possibly decided that he liked the old park after going out in the Restricted Zone and seeing what the original place looked like, and out-of-universe it was really cool to have a character who was a Jurassic Park fanboy and spoke for all of us. But still.
· I liked the pigeon-foot joke in the beginning—not only was it a funny little transition gag, like how Lost World skipped from the little girl’s mother to Malcolm screaming, but it was a nice little nod to the series’ consistent theme of dinosaur-to-bird evolution, which the rest of the movie didn’t mention at all.
· This is now my favorite Christmas movie ever. If it took place close enough to Christmas that “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” was necessary to set up the time frame, I wonder why the boys’ mother still had to go to work and the airplane hangar that the survivors were in (which, to be fair, may have been in Costa Rica) was in a completely bright and sunny area, but I don’t care. I’m watching this every December from now on.
· Other than when the original theme played, “Our Rex is Bigger Than Yours” and the main theme—the one that played when Rexy roared at the end—are my favorite pieces of music in the film. This is one of my favorite scores from the whole franchise, second only to the first movie’s. But then again, the highlights of JP3’s soundtrack were a symbolic Western song and a mangled version of the original main theme, so it’s not like there was too much to beat.
· Owen didn’t protect or save Claire in the sense that she hid behind a log while he beat dinosaurs down with a two-by-four, but he did do things like yank her to the ground to keep her away from the pteranodon flock and tell her to stay in the car while he investigated the remains of Gyrosphere Valley. I realize that some people might cry sexism because of that and say that Claire was constantly being looked out for by a man while they were out in the jungle, and I can’t say I don’t understand where they’d be coming from, but I actually kind of liked how that worked out. Owen might have protected Claire and saved her a couple of times, but that was in the jungle. Once they got back to the park, Claire was the one who did all the saving—she shot away that dimorphodon like a boss within five minutes of arriving back at the park, and she thought to release the T. rex when Owen probably wouldn’t have. Owen did his best when they were out in the wilderness and Claire didn’t because she wasn’t used to that type of environment, but when they got back into the park, she took over and kicked butt. The two of them had different areas of expertise and both of them had to rely on one another when they were out of their comfort zones, and I liked that. Their differences weren’t because of their genders—they were because both Claire and Owen were unique, complex characters.
· Finally, other than Claire’s obvious story line about learning to care for her family, the movie really returned to Jurassic Park’s more overt family- and parenting-related themes. This article makes an excellent point—the first movie had a lot to do with parenting and family-centric plots. The sequels had family drama subplots, of course, but none of them had as much to say about the importance of family as the first movie did, and this one definitely brought those themes back. There was Zach and Gray’s reconciliation, Owen’s relationship with his raptors (which was more like family than anything else) and the boys’ parents, all three of which dealt with different types of family relationships. That’s why I don’t feel bad or sexist about saying that Claire learned to be a good mother over the course of the movie. She learned something important about valuing family and being a parent, and it’s a good thing that she did. That’s what these movies have always been about.

We have something to celebrate– Jurassic World has shattered records with its opening weekend, and it had, domestically and internationally, the biggest opening weekend of all time. Let’s all pour out a couple of margaritas and protect them at all costs!

Leathery Wings

Yes, I wrote a Jurassic World fanfic (I mean, another) but I’m not the only one by far. There has been an absolute flood of JW fanfiction in the past couple of days, and nearly all of it is really, really great. I have my work cut out for me in the next Fanfics You Should Be Reading. In general news, Chris Pratt says he’s already signed on for the next movie, and Jurassic World had the third-biggest opening weekend of all time. So congratulations, guys– we made our mark on history. We threw our money at the movie and our voices were heard. 

This is the sequel to Gentle Giants Petting Zoo, and it was written for CJCroen1393, who’s having his birthday today (I was wrong and it wasn’t yesterday, oops). Hope you enjoy it!

Really, feeding a baby triceratops is like feeding any other baby. Which means that they both completely refuse to eat when they’re supposed to.

“Come on, don’t you want just one bite?” Ian Malcolm offers the carrot to the little baby trike, holding it right under the animal’s nose. The trike doesn’t even glance down, continuing to stare blankly into Ian’s eyes like an oversized terrier. He tries to encourage the animal—one of the khaki-clad Gentle Giants Petting Zoo handlers told him earlier that carrots are their favorite treats—by snapping the vegetable into smaller pieces, but the baby chooses to nuzzle the back of his hand with its beak instead. Ian gives in, rubbing behind its frill like the handler said they liked, and the creature grunts with satisfaction and steps closer. “Yeah, I know the drill,” Ian says good-naturedly as the leathery baby shakes its head to get more scratches on its frill and rubs its cheek against his leg. “You’ll eat anytime except when I, ah, want you to, right?”

From a few feet away, little kids and tiny orthiniscian babies milling around her, Ian sees Sarah look up and give him a knowing smile. He gives her a sardonic look and returns his attention to the baby, which has nearly crawled up on his lap. He keeps scratching behind its frill and allows a little grin as he mumbles, “You’re just a big baby, huh? Don’t wanna eat your carrots just like any other kid?” It gives a soft snort in response, and though Ian would admittedly like to have it stick around, one of its handlers whistles and it perks up immediately. The trike jumps to its feet and bounds across the dusty, fenced-in enclosure on its stubby little legs, and Ian’s left to sit on the ground alone. After a moment, he takes the effort to get to his feet, shaking off the twinges in his left leg. That’s when he gets the first sign that something is wrong.

The first clue Ian gets is the bird’s unusual wings.

He glances up at the sky for a second, and his eyes just happen to focus in on a single bird, about fifty yards away from them. He stares at it idly, and begins to turn away when he notices a sudden strange quality about the animal. There’s something about it that’s distinctly un-birdlike.

“Honey, look,” he turns and says to Sarah nervously. “Look at that bird up there. There’s—there’s somethin’ weird about it.” His kneeling girlfriend, engrossed in a squirming baby apatosaur whose neck bones she’s trying to inspect, gives no response. “It’s engineered, Sarah. What did I tell you about—ah—they probably wouldn’t just stop at dinosaurs. Didn’t I tell you that?” The only answer he gets is the bob of Sarah’s curly red ponytail as she shakes her head.

“Wouldn’t just stop at dinosaurs,” he mutters to himself, staring back at the odd bird and squinting in the bright island sun. “Trying to repopulate their entire island ecosystem with their—their own brand of animals, the—” He stops suddenly when he sees the bird’s wings. There’s a strange translucent quality to them, the sun shining through both wings and illuminating them like stained-glass windows. “Sarah, look, the—the wings don’t have any feathers. What the hell kind of bird is that?”

“Ian, sit down and help hold this thing still for me,” she calls back.

The second clue he gets is the bird’s call.

The noise definitely comes from the strange animal circling in the sky; it’s as audible as the average hawk’s call, except it isn’t emanating from any kind of hawk. Ian immediately jumps a little when he hears it. There’s a strange undertone to it, something different about it that touches a nerve deep down in his mind. It sounds a bit like a crow’s warble and an eagle’s screech, mixed with a visceral, angry scream. “I know you heard that,” he says, turning back to Sarah and gesturing at the sky. “What does that sound like to you?”

Her response is to get up, stand face-to-face with him and matter-of-factly plop a squirming baby Gallimimus in his leather-jacketed arms. “Just stay in the moment, Ian,” she says, reaching forward to help as he struggles to keep the tiny animal from leaping to the ground. “We came here for a reason, you know.”

“Yeah, I know,” he sighs as Sarah helps the baby find a stable footing on his arm. As she gently runs her fingers over its tiny scales, the little animal’s amber eyes meet Ian’s, and it gives a contented little chirp.

The third clue is the rest of the bird’s flock.

The baby galli starts to enjoy Sarah’s petting, bobbing its tiny head up and down and flapping its little arms like a young bird trying to fly. As he tries his best to be an unmoving perch, Ian glances back up at the sky and almost jumps. Where a minute ago the sky was clear and cloudless, now it’s half-covered in shadow. Tiny black dots have begun to fill the bright blue horizon, and the dark cloud they form begins to block out the sun and shadow the ground. Except it’s not so much a cloud as it is a swarm. And as they get closer, Ian sees that the dots are birds.

“Sarah.” Ian doesn’t bother to keep his other arm still as he points at the growing cloud. “Sarah. Look.”

Sarah takes one last look at the baby and sets it on the ground. It dashes away to join the herd of other little gallis, and Sarah rises again, brushes her hair out of her face and says in a distinct tone, “Remember what you said to your therapist about—”

“No, th-that’s not it. Look.” Sarah raises one eyebrow and turns her head to look where Ian’s pointing. The mass of flying animals has gotten much, much closer in the past few seconds and the weird calls are beginning to fill the air, along with distinctly leathery flapping sounds. Ian and Sarah see the birds’ faces about a second apart and react instantaneously.

“Oh God,” Sarah says before she begins to back up, waving her arms around and screaming, “Get out! Get out of the way!” Some of the kids follow her instructions and dash over to the protective arms of their parents, but others remain crouched on the ground and only give her quizzical looks.

“Everybody move!” Ian shouts at the top of his lungs, running around blindly and only thinking about getting these kids out of the way. A few little children stand still, petrified by his and Sarah’s screaming, but some of the older kids grab the younger kids’ wrists and drag them out of the petting zoo area. As more and more visitors look up to see what they’re running from, they let out piercing screams and practically trample one another to get to the exit. A few handlers try to usher the kids out of the area and keep them calm, some handlers almost run over the crowd trying to get out ahead of everyone else and a few stay behind, attempting to keep the dinosaurs under control. Their attempts are useless; the babies already know about the danger and have begun to run around in sheer terror, bleating and kicking up clouds of dust as they stampede around in their little herds and try to find an exit. In less than a minute, the entire area becomes a swirling, chaotic mess and only Ian and Sarah remain near the far end of the enclosure, making sure all of the kids are getting out and shouting that the crowd is blocking the exit. Everyone needs to get out, but they can’t pile up on each other, if they can wait just another second–

The fourth clue shows that the flock is most definitely not comprised of birds.

It happens all at once. One enormous pteranodon swoops in and reaches right for Sarah with its talons, and then every single one of them is right there in the petting zoo, flapping their gigantic wings and screeching in a big, leathery blur. There are larger ones and smaller ones, but Ian doesn’t think to look too close; there are just so many of them and they’re everywhere. A smaller one lands on his head in a burst of white-hot pain. He shouts and smacks it away when its claws start to dig into his scalp. He tries to turn around and make it back to the exit, but he can’t see a thing; he can’t even look two feet to the side and see where Sarah is, there are so many pteranodons around him that they seem to make up an undulating solid that fills every last bit of space. Blindly, little claws scratching everywhere and wings smacking his face with each second, Ian lunges forward and claws at the air with his hands, fighting to move forward.

It’s like running through an overgrown jungle that’s dense with elephant ears or trying to run underwater, but somehow Ian makes it through the swarm and feels a larger hand grabbing his. He gropes around a little more and when he feels shoulders and other people, he lets out a wordless yell and a couple of heads turn. He’s finally made it to the gate and there are other people here, although not many. All the children are gone, he notes with relief, but three or four adults are running around wildly, grabbing baby dinosaurs and shoving past him to get them out of the enclosure. A blonde woman in a khaki handler’s uniform bumps into him and, without warning, shoves him to the ground right before an enormous pteranodon swoops over them with its claws outstretched. “Get the babies!” the woman yells right into his ear.

“Kids okay?” he yells back.

“Kids are fine, but the babies don’t know where to go! Either help us or run!” She gets back up—she’s got a baby galli tight in her arms—and dashes off.

It doesn’t take long for Ian to get his priorities in order. “Sarah!” he roars, but she’s nowhere to be seen. “Sarah! Follow my voice! Sarah!” The pteranodon flock is partially dissipated but still there—they must have left when the little kids did. The reptiles seem to be focusing their attentions on the dinosaur babies now. Some of the bigger pteranodons are trying their damndest to grab up the baby apatosaurs; a few feet away, one pterosaur digs its claws into an apatosaur’s neck and tries to pull it up, but the little animal grunts and yanks itself away. Some, though, are more successful—a dimorphodon flies right in front of Ian’s face, carrying a screeching baby gallimimus. Without thinking, Ian smacks the reptile away and yanks the baby out of its grip, leaning over and dropping the little animal back on the ground before looking around wildly to find Sarah.

He hears her before he sees her. Around the middle of the enclosure, he can faintly hear Sarah yelling, “Hey!” above the still-persistent flapping of wings. She’s got something small tucked under her arm—probably another little galli—and she’s jogging over to where the biggest pteranodon in the whole flock is trying to lift something. Ian squints to see it better, and sure enough, the gigantic flying beast has a brown baby triceratops encased in its talons. The littler animal, a saddle still attached to its back, squirms and wails as the larger one strains to lift it. Sarah makes her way directly under the pteranodon’s long wingspan and pulls her free arm back.

“Sarah, no!” Ian yells when he sees what she’s about to do, but it’s too late. Dropping the baby galli under her arm, Sarah lets out an angry shout and punches one of the pterandon’s wings with every ounce of strength she has. Instead of letting go of its prey, the pteranodon screeches in surprise and attempts to bat her away, managing to whack her across the cheek and leave a bloody mark. She hisses and leans back to punch it again, but her form isn’t so good and her punch only has minimal impact. Ian swats another dimorphodon and decides, to hell with it. He runs with a slight limp over to the middle of the enclosure, where the pteranodon is still struggling with the baby and Sarah has begun trying to pull the trike out of the reptile’s grip. He’s just about to pull her out of the way when an earsplitting BANG rings through the air. Something dark clouds his vision and he nearly falls over; beside him, he’s vaguely aware of a high screech and something hitting the ground with a sickening thump.

He hears, “Over here, get outta there!” somewhere in the distance through the ringing in his ears. Sarah grabs his shoulder—he wipes his eyes with his sleeve and sees that she has something wriggly and scaly-looking in her arms—and insists, “Come on, Ian, come on.” She lets go and he blindly follows her through the pen, and when they head out of the gate he sees what they’re running to.

A sandy-haired man, wearing a leather vest and holding a still-smoking hunting rifle, is waiting for them on an ATV with the engine running; a red-haired woman in filthy white clothes clings to him. When she notices they’ve stopped, she shakes the man’s shoulder and says urgently, “Owen, why are we stopping?”

“I know these people,” Owen answers. “Claire, they can help us. That’s Ian Malcolm and Sarah, uh…”

“Sarah Harding?” The woman, Claire squints and looks at the both of them. “Are you Sarah Harding?”

“Yeah.” Sarah puts whatever she was carrying down and rushes Ian over to the ATV. “Thanks. You helping take care of this?”

“Yeah,” Owen answers. Looking around wildly to see where the rest of the pteranodon flock is headed, Ian notices a large, thin body lying where he was a minute ago and suddenly realizes what happened to the huge pterodactyl. The animal lies with dust swirling around it, blood oozing out of its chest, and Ian connects the sight with the gun in Owen’s hand.

“Look, you’ve done this before, right?” Claire asks. Her eyes are frenzied and she looks desperate. “Look, Owen’s helping ACU get these animals under control, but I have two of my nephews that I really, really need to find and if you could help him while I—”

“Whoa, you okay?” Owen cuts her off, staring at Ian.

“He’s fine,” Sarah answers for him, and Ian’s realization that blood from his claw-mark injuries must be the thick liquid getting into his eyes is immediately followed by a bewildering sheepishness. “What, are you just shooting all of them? Not trying to get them back in the aviary or anything?”

“We need to worry about fatalities first,” Claire says, her voice rising.

“I can help you,” Sarah insists. “Let me on, get me a tranquilizer gun or something. Do you have one? These animals don’t have to die.”

“Hop on,” Owen answers, moving forward on his seat. “Claire, give ‘em some room.” Claire moves closer to Owen, who digs around in a knapsack and produces a gray tranquilizer gun, thrusting it backward at Sarah. She climbs onto the seat behind Claire, grabbing the gun, and Ian instinctively follows, holding onto her waist. It takes them a few seconds to fit onto the limited amount of space, but they work it out, Ian and Sarah sitting sideways to fit better.

“Hang on, is that one all right?” Claire suddenly asks, looking to the ground beside Sarah’s feet.

Ian and Sarah see what she’s pointing out at the same time. Sarah lets out one of the sympathetic “Oh”s that usually indicate that they’ll soon be responsible for another animal if she gets her way, and she leans down and picks up, with great effort, the baby triceratops that she was just punching a giant pteranodon to save. The bulky creature wriggles its forelegs and squeals, and even Ian feels a pang in his heart when he notices the deep claw marks down its back and the obvious panic in its eyes.

Sarah cocks the tranquilizer gun and holds it up with one arm, and plunks the little trike across her and Ian’s lap with the other, protectively wrapping her arm over its back to hold it still. “Ready to go,” she says.

“Sarah—” Ian begins, moving the baby’s leg so it’s not so uncomfortable on his.

She looks up and gives him the raised-eyebrow look that simultaneously says that she’s thoroughly made up her mind and asks him if he really thinks it’s wise to question her judgment. “I’m not stopping at the animal hospital,” Owen says, looking back as he twists ATV’s handle and revs the engine.

“You don’t need to,” Sarah yells over the vehicle’s roar. “I’ll patch her up myself. Let’s go.” She grips the baby trike even harder, and it stills and nuzzles its little beak into her shirt. Ian notes this and sighs. At this rate, it’s distinctly possible that Sarah will want to take the little animal home with them.

“Ready?” Without waiting for an answer, Owen throttles the ATV forward and the four of them—well, five—speed off into Jurassic World.

New InGen Video & Awesome TV Spot Footage

Here it is, guys. You’ve wanted it for years, you’ve imagined it since BD Wong’s involvement was announced and you’ve dreamed about it. Here it is. Here is Raptorpass’s newest video about why Jurassic World won’t make Jurassic Park’s mistakes, and it stars Henry Wu getting sciencey up in your face.

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All RIGHT, the EGG is back! The egg they won’t stop showing has returned! The egg’s return is a good thing! All hail the egg!

The video opens with a voiceover from Dr. Wu, who narrates this video in a voice that seems really overenthusiastic even compared to what we’ve seen in the Masrani videos. The first thing he says is, “Nature’s been cloning organisms for hundreds of millions of years.” A dandelion releasing little spore-thingies is shown as an example. This line of reasoning is not elaborated on (um, a dandelion semi-asexually reproducing is nowhere near the same as artificial de-extinction. Plant reproduction has nothing at all in common with bringing back extinct animals)– instead, Wu goes straight to gushing more about how much InGen has accomplished in the field of genetics.

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After all these years, Henry still looks plucky and bright-eyed, ready for long days in the lab and putting up with his boss’ ^%$*. He’s rocking that Steve Jobs look with a buzzcut and black turtleneck. How very professional. Why, he doesn’t even need to wear a lab coat to get people to blindly agree with his arguments. (I’m not dissing on Henry here. He’s awesome. But InGen scientists are not a very bright bunch.)

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LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

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Dr. Wu shares the spotlight with these two. I know these movies are already pretty good with diversity, but hooray for lots of female scientists being prominently featured! And hooray even more for black female scientists being prominently featured! Man, what’s not to love about this franchise? They just show women being genius scientists like it ain’t no thing. Women can do really smart things that lead to stupidity-induced catastrophes, too!

I would love to dig deeper into the themes presented here, but really, most of the video is corporate fluff bordering on propaganda. As a fan, of course I love the worldbuilding and it’s great to see the sleek, scientific part of the franchise get explored more, but if I lived in this universe and saw this video, I’d roll my eyes and click ‘Skip Ad’. Most of the video is just scientists talking about how much InGen has accomplished in so little time. I’ll still analyze it, but it’s not totally groundbreaking. It’s a corporate feel-good spiel.

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Here’s their miracle genetic sequencer, the Hammond XP-20, with which they can decode the genome of any extinct animal in under an hour. Hey, Hammond actually mentioned using his technology to de-extinct the condor, maybe you wanna hop on something small like that before you start with the whole dinosaur business. Say, for all the harping on they do in this movie about “John Hammond’s dream” and “what Hammond would have wanted”, didn’t Hammond actually realize in the end that he made a mistake? Didn’t he tell Grant that he’d also decided not to endorse his park, and didn’t he explicitly say, “You were right and I was wrong” to Malcolm? I mean, he may have wished in the back of his mind that he’d found a right way to bring back dinosaurs, but by the second movie I’m pretty sure he knew that something like Jurassic Park would only end in disaster.

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There’s also this fellow, who may in fact be the quintessential model for the ‘dino-chow’ character. Look at him. Look at his dorky glasses and pocket protector. He’s food.

Wu says, “How do we do it? Wouldn’t our rival companies like to know,” and then looks at us like this:

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Oh Henry, you dog.

First, Biosyn! Biosyn! Chant with me! Biosyn! Biosyn! #BringBackBiosyn2k15. Second, wouldn’t literally the only thing you’d need to do to sequence genomes the way InGen does be to steal a Hammond sequencer? Seriously, with the right security clearance a disgruntled employee could Nedry out of the place with a sequencer under their arm, and their company could be hard at work dinosaur-makin’ by the next morning. And they’d know exactly what to do once they had the machine, too, because InGen gives away a pretty big secret in this video.

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They explain (using the original Mr. DNA animation! Although it doesn’t make much sense to, because in-universe the only people who’d ever get the reference would be Dr. Wu and the rest of the original Park survivors. Come to think of it, that seems like a bit of a slap in the face to them) that they don’t need to use frog DNA to fill in the gaps in DNA anymore. They do that with soft tissue found with dinosaur bones now, which contains complete genetic code. Well, that right there is the one other thing that a rival company would need to clone an extinct animal after they got their hands on a Hammond sequencer– otherwise they’d be left to assume that the only source of DNA was blood from mosquitoes and they’d be stuck with incomplete strands, leaving them at a dead end– so congratulations InGen, you spilled the beans all over the place. Also, I’m under the impression that soft tissue from dinosaurs is incredibly hard to obtain, but this is Jurassic Park science we’re talking about here.

Also, there’s no frog DNA involved and the animals have nearly 100% genome accuracy, but there are still no feathers? I know it probably goes back to the original novel and how Wu talks about the need for the public to experience the kind of scaly dinosaurs that the media has always shown them, but I’m still disappointed. I want fluffy raptors and someday I will get them.

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Oh boy. The Lego trailer argument-baited with the Rex/Spino fight, now this. Should we have a bunch more flame wars just to pacify Jurassic World’s producers? I feel like that’s what they want.

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Dino Chow the Geneticist talks about genetic modification and “designer life”, followed by a shot of a Microceratus growing trike horns. What exactly is the purpose there? Are they just Stegoceratops-ing every single animal in the park in a desperate spin on the “new hybrids equal money” idea?

Anyway, they basically talk about how they can manipulate animals’ genomes and play God however they want, which leads to any kinds of applications that they can dream of. Really, it’s a desperate plea for every viewer to throw on their leather jacket and do their best Malcom-argument impression to whoever they’re watching the video with so they look smart. The scientists talk about how InGen’s work isn’t just about dinosaurs, it can also be used for medical and defense purposes. Except that the bio-weapons in defense thing is actually about weaponized raptors, so… yeah, it actually does all go back to dinosaurs. Funny how that works out.

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They say in unintentionally ominous tones that there’s no limit to what InGen can do, and then Wu explains something that I’ve been saying for ages– “which came first, the chicken or the egg?” is a useless question, because chickens evolved from egg-laying dinosaurs and thus the egg came first. Finally, someone understands. Nobody gets me like you do, Dr. Wu.

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And that’s the end of it. The video, though awesome, doesn’t really reveal much. But what it does reveal is pretty important, namely the fact that soft tissue is now being used instead of amber-blood and frog DNA. Come to think of it, that would explain why Baryonyx and Suchomimus have little feather-crests and why most of the animals have more vibrant color patterns. The actual dinosaur DNA is starting to really shine through, even though InGen is probably tweaking with their genetics in order to keep them scaly, because of the whole public-expectations thing. But that doesn’t matter, because now we have a legitimate reason to expect feathered theropods and we haven’t gotten them. Feathers were waved before our noses like so many carrots in front of horses, and then they were cruelly yanked away. It’s time for another feather-based Internet riot. Grab your torches, we’re gonna burn stuff.

Yesterday, two new TV spots dropped, both of which bringing us a few new seconds of great footage! The first, spot #9, is here:

The only new footage is at the end, but boy is it incredible. Claire– who looks very roughed-up indeed, this is probably sometime around when she releases the T. rex– is driving the boys in the Mobile Veterinary Unit at night. Gray says, “We’re safe in here, right?” Gray, you have got to stop saying that. Whenever that line comes out of his adorable. clueless little mouth, something comes along and tries to rip him apart. And sure enough:

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Okay, how awesome is that? The shot is so cool, the scene looks suspenseful and scary and that raptor is animated so beautifully! Look at it, you can see the light and moisture on its scales and everything. We haven’t gotten a look at any wild Nublar dinosaurs yet, so I can’t say for sure if this is Blue going rogue (probably is, juding by her presence in the MVU attack Lego set)  or just some wild raptor. Either way, it looks so cool! This is without a doubt the scene where Claire says, “You can’t tell your mother about that, ever.” Yeah, I can see why that would be necessary.

Here’s the other one, #10:

Again, the good bit is at the end. You should really watch it because the GIFs don’t do it justice. Claire and Owen are out in the jungle; Claire says, “There are families out there!” and we see more petting zoo babies. Wait, PETTING ZOO BABIES!

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SO DELICATE AND STUBBY

Aww, how precious! I love their teeny horns and little frills. I imagine they’re not too thrilled with being saddled and ridden upon–

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Disregard.

–but at least they’re being sweet to the kids and not rampaging, right? I mean, if I were in their situation I’d be bucking like a madman and Spirit Stallion of the Cimarron-ing out of there. Actually, once they get old enough they’ll probably end up doing just that.

Owen answers, “On any other day they’d be fine,” and things take… well, a turn for the worse:

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Aww, poor baby Triceratops! If I were a visitor there, I would take a baseball bat to that Pteranodon like it was a big scaly pinata, but Triceratops don’t get no respect. I seriously hope that baby ends up being too heavy, because I’d truly feel sorry for whoever read my movie review and/or sat with me in the theater if a baby dinosaur died.

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But look what trilogy this is in.

As a bonus, there was a little shot added to the Main Street attack scene. It shows a Dimorphodon smashing through a restaurant window, snatching meat off a grill and generally refusing to give a &*^$.

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Overall, I’m really excited about what we’re being shown. The sequences are looking more and more exciting, not to mention the massive improvements in the CGI. Just look at the Pteranodon and Dimorphodon’s wings– you can even see the tiny veins! We’re reaching critical hype levels here. Concentration is increasing exponentially. Evacuate! Evacuate!

New TV Spot With BABIES

Another Jurassic World TV spot is out!

You probably know me well enough to guess what I’m gonna talk about first. If you’re new here, I tend to obsess a bit over baby dinosaurs; I’ve waited a long time for a good look at the dino babies of Jurassic World, and now I need to have A Moment. The spot gives us a shot of baby dinosaurs in the Gentle Giants Petting Zoo! Babies! Babies! BABIES!!!!!

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Look how tiny and precious they all are! The little tiny apatosaur who wraps his little neck around the boy who runs up and hugs him! That little boy loves dinosaurs so much he can’t help himself from hugging that one! And it hugs him back! And all the little Gallimimuses scampering around and trying to play with everyone! The teeny baby triceratops following their handlers like little puppies! I think I’m having actual heart palpitations right now– I just wanna pick them up and hug them and wrap them in little knitted blankets and snuggle with them forever! Aagh, I can’t handle this, it’s so cute. It’s my new favorite trailer shot and it just might be my favorite part of the movie. Also, why are all the handlers dressed exactly like Muldoon? Is it this franchise’s version of red shirts?

Seriously, though, here’s a clearer version. The little apatosaur settles its head on the boy’s shoulder and closes its eyes. It’s hugging him back. No one can convince me otherwise.

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In an extended version of the adorable shot from Spot #4, Claire and Owen get shippy in the jungle:

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I’m not entirely sure why their nearly taking a trip down the T. rex Throat Tunnel of Terror together makes me want them to kiss so much, but it does.

Edit: I knew this reminded me of something. Now I know what:

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You’ve gotta admit, there are parallels. Both pairs are grudgingly polite at best and adversarial at worst, right up until the point when they nearly get killed together– and then they’re adorable and squee-worthy. Are near-death experiences the best way for couples to bond in these movies? This universe must have some really grim dating sites.

And there’s a longer shot of when Owen tells Claire (completely unnecessarily, I think she’s actually past the Ellen Ripley horizon by this point) to get the kids somewhere safe:

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I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again– why is everyone but Claire so clean?! I guess she needs to get nice and grunged up to show her transition from cleanliness and order, but seriously, how is it possible for everyone to be mostly clean but her? Whatever. You get those battle scars, Claire.

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More pretty Gyrosphere scenery. I really feel like this scene will mostly be Trevorrow showing off his cinematography chops, and I’m totally okay with that. What would a Jurassic Park movie be without wondrous, peaceful, visual-based dinosaur sequences?

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JP3, that’s what.

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Here’s a panoramic shot of the lagoon and the woman who says the Mosasaur is “a little shy”. She gon’ get ate.

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In the control-room argument scene before stuff starts to go down, Claire yells, “We are not in control here!” and continues to set impossible beauty standards for anyone who wants to cosplay her.

And that’s it. Really I just did this as a full post so that I could properly express my many baby-related feelings. But how cute is that?! I seriously hope there’s an extended petting zoo scene in the movie. Even with just a minute-long scene, I’d die happy.

Less than a month to go until the worldwide premiere!

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All abooooooard!

Random News: Entertainment Weekly Edition

Hi guys! I still exist! I just haven’t had enough spare time to take a deep breath this week, so I haven’t gotten around to blogging a lot. But I made a way!

Are any of my readers in the One Direction fandom? I’m personally not, but if you hang around Tumblr enough you get wind of that particular group once in a while. Well, apparently one of their members had a Twitter feud with Naughty Boy, and they had a blast with it. Throwing shade over Twitter is a pretty popular thing now, especially in fandoms. And guess which fandom got its very own Twitter drama recently, regarding the MTV clip?

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I kinda wish he’d said it out loud so we could get an autotune remix.

I’m not getting into what he said here or encouraging people to argue with him, because Whedon actually apologized for saying this (he said it was “bad form”). But how cool is it that Joss Whedon threw shade at our fandom? I’m not being sarcastic here, this is great. Joss Whedon! Senpai noticed us! And we got memes out of it:

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I found this on a JPLegacy post; it seems to be from the official website, but I don’t know exactly where one could find it:

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According to the safety rules on the right, the dinosaurs have ‘sensors’ on them. I assume this is some kind of radio tracking mechanism? In that case, hunting the I. rex might be a lot easier for these people than we’d previously thought. If she’s got a tracker on her, they can follow her through the jungle, and if they go through a two-hour movie without capturing or shooting her, then obviously she’s very, very skilled at evasion and defense. Wait, I just had an idea. How cool would it be if there was a suspenseful scene, possibly with the ACUs, where their equipment shows her getting closer and closer to them until she’s right in front of them– and she camouflages so they know she’s right there but they can’t see her. I really hope something like that goes down. Now that would be terrifying.

More new merchandise photos came out recently. Via Jurassic June on Twitter:

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That appears to be a remote-control Jeep Wrangler car, and I dearly hope it’s scaled somewhere near the 90s action figures and/or dinosaurs. If it is, I’m getting one and driving my Ian Malcolm figure and/ or my various raptors around the house in it all day and no one can stop me. I think I’ll call it Rexy’s Pimpmobile.

From Jurassiraptor on Twitter, four new Hero Mashers sets:

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Raptor

Pterodactyl

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You know, I hate to give up on a good gimmick, but I actually don’t despise these. The more Carnotaurus the better, right? Plus we get another dilophosaur (although I’m noticing a bit of a disturbing trend towards blue coloration with these toys) and I love that Ichthyosaur. Ichthy might have been the marine predator that other marine predators put in their sandwiches, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t deserve to be recognized, and this isn’t a bad way to do it. I particularly like the snaggletooth and the little razor-edges on the tail. Will Raptor Dash sell out and buy the child of the creatures she once condemned as monstrosities? Stay tuned!

This is a popcorn bag that will be for sale when the movie comes out:

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They made a bag out of the insanely happy Mosasaur picture I liked so much! Look at that sweet grin on Mosa. Aww.

Well, a new Jurassic World game– Jurassic World Builder– was released this week, and frankly it’s something that I don’t have the time to tackle right now. But I can provide you with a detailed review: http://www.jplegacy.org/coranto/iSay.cgi?Page=Comments&ID=EukllVEluVBVCecCnx

Maybe sometime I’ll review screenshots of the dinos, but here’s something interesting from the game:

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I assume this is basically the entire cast list, plus a few additions; Grace Hudson (I swear, every time I see a black woman in official materials, there’s always that little spark of hope that Kelly’s back), for instance, seems like the type of character that walks you through the steps of the game judging by her architect-like dress. The guy in the Alan Grant hat looks like Hammond but will probably end up being another paleontologist expy (like Richard Burke to the real-life Robert Bakker); I feel like they’ll make a few scientific community in-jokes with him. Doug Malick looks like an ominous Man In A Suit and very edible indeed. And how about Patricia? I hope she shows up in the movie, it’ll be awesome if they include a disabled character, especially if she turns out not to be evil. Every type of kid needs someone like them to look up to, you know?

This was quietly added to one of the trailers:

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WHAT DID I SAY ABOUT THE HONEYCOMB WALLS? WHAT DID I FREAKING *pounds head on desk*

Micheal Giacchino continues to absolutely slay me with his music titles:

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Jimmy Fallon also narrates the guided tours at Universal Studios in Hollywood because, again, this park is NOTHING LIKE Universal.

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And spoiler alert, folks: we’re gonna cry:

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I’m not an expert sight-reader, but that’s looking an awful lot like the piano music that played in the helicopter at the end of the first movie. Jurassic World– sponsored in part by Kleenex.

A short segment in Entertainment Weekly magazine featured Jurassic World and a couple of new stills:

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I think I’m just gonna start calling them the Obligatory OTP.

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Wow that’s a gorgeous shot. I like what they’re doing with the dinosaur colors– Triceratops has some blue on her (and some beautiful skin-texture CGI) and Apatosaurus either molts her skin, rolls around in mud or has some brown streaks on her skin. The stegos look very nice too– seeing them from the side, they look very Lost World, an design that I personally love. I really think these animals are great-looking and awe-inducing, which they were definitely meant to be. Also, some people on JPL have pointed out that if you look closely in the background, you can see what might be a Parasaurolophus:

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“Some of our dinosaurs appear to believe they’re Bigfoot. We prefer to let sleeping dogs lie. Next on our tour…”

So if really blurry dinosaurs are your thing, I hope I just made your day. The written piece wasn’t very long, so here it is in its entirety:

It’s been nearly a decade since Hurricane Katrina, and the sign at the entrance of New Orleans’ Six Flags still says “Closed for Storm.” The rides inside may be shut down, but on this muggy day in June 2014, the enormous parking lot has been taken over by the $180 million-plus production of Jurassic World. In the fourth movie in the Jurassic Park series, the dinosaur island theme park that John Hammond (Richard Attenborough) was developing in the original 1993 film has finally come to fruition 22 years later. It is a thriving vacation destination, and the set reflects this. There is an elaborate main street with a visitor center, a gift shop, and restaurants. For the moment, everything is surprisingly calm. “It’s going to be super boring,” jokes Chris Pratt, who plays an ex-military dude living on the island and studying raptors. “It’s just, like, us watching dinosaurs for an hour and a half.” Hardly. Soon enough, Pratt and costar Bryce Dallas Howard are ducking for cover from flying pteranodons and screaming, “Run!”

Some things never change. In keeping with the previous films, Jurassic World is a tale of humans who get cut (or chomped) down to size when they try to outwit nature in the name of the almighty dollar. “We have seen that we will repeat our mistakes if there’s money on the table,” says director Colin Trevorrow. “It’s not about the danger of playing God. These animals are real, and they’re on our planet.”

To boost attendance at the swank new park, operations manager Claire (Howard) introduces a genetically modified dino into the mix. But of course the big baddie escapes and unleashes a rampage—right when Claire’s young nephews (Ty Simpkins and Nick Robinson) happen to be visiting the island. In one scene that pays homage to the first Jurassic’s iconic T. rex/Ford Explorer sequence, the unlucky lads come close to becoming the beast’s playthings. “There’s a ride at the park that allows you to get into a gyroscopic sphere and be out in the wild with dinosaurs and travel beneath them—and that goes horribly wrong,” says Trevorrow, whose only other feature is 2012’s time-travel indie Safety Not Guaranteed. “Imagine being inside a sphere and then suddenly it breaks and you’re rolling like a cat with a ball of yarn.” Enter Claire, who morphs into an Ellen Ripley-like heroine to protect her nephews. “Becoming a mother myself, I’ve realized being maternal is being wildly badass,” the actress says with a laugh.

Howard and Pratt also got to inject a bit of love/hate, Romancing the Stone-esque electricity into their characters. “They don’t like each other at all, and by the end that’s changed,” Trevorrow says. “We think that [classic conceit] absolutely can apply to a dinosaur movie.”

Making those kinds of decisions is all part of the job on a colossal operation like Jurassic World. It’s no small feat to jump from an indie like Safety (which cost $750,000) to a major franchise. But producer Frank Marshall and exec producer Steven Spielberg liked what they saw in Trevorrow. “Colin understood the [Jurassic] movies,” Marshall says. “That’s what Steven and I felt was the most important thing—he’s a storyteller.” Trevorrow is aware of the tall order he faced. “There are a lot of people in my generation who dreamed of being filmmakers who would love to have this job, and I feel a responsibility to all of them to make this everything that we all wish it could be,” he says. “If I can pull that off, that’s my gift back to Steven.” And to us.

So that hate supposedly turns to convincing love. All right, I can roll with that. It can be fun to watch a romance that develops through witty bickering and chemistry that starts out as total opposition. As long as the movie plays it right– and it definitely has the capability to– I’m sure this romance thing will work as a nice little subplot. Also, Claire is Ellen Ripley! Are they trying to hype us up for Claire or the dinosaurs here? I’m conflicted as to where my loyalties lie.

That’s all for today; hopefully I’ll have the time to look at Jurassic World Builder and its dinosaurs sometime this week (hey Dinosaur Guy, maybe you wanna get this one?). Oh, and a million blessings on whoever drew this:

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And this is semi-JP related, but I totally saw the world’s biggest fractal a few days ago and it was awesome:

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That is one big pile of squares.