Liebster Award from Nicole

I received a Liebster Award nomination from Nicole! If you’re not familiar with her site, Nicole’s Book Thoughts, head on over and check it out! Nicole reviews a nice variety of books, managing to give key details for those wondering if a book is right for them while still avoiding or clearly marking any major spoilers. You’ll also find fun posts with tags, lists, and general updates about life and reading. I am endlessly impressed with the way she took a school project blog and turned it into this wonderful, personable site. Thank you, Nicole!



  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and give a link to the blog.
  2. Answer the 11 questions given to you.
  3. Nominate between 5-11 other bloggers.
  4. Ask your nominees 11 questions.
  5. Notify your nominees once you’ve uploaded your post.

Questions from Nicole:

1. What’s the hardest part about blogging?

It’s always a challenge to keep up a regular schedule. Every time I think I’m getting into the swing of things, other parts of my life flag me down. I am trying a new idea based on a tip from CW at The Quiet Pond, plotting out my ideas further ahead of time. The original tip utilized an organization app for this scheduling, but I’m testing it out with pen and paper to start. Yeah, I’m old-fashioned like that. I’ve learned to keep my plans flexible, but writing down a basic plan does seem to be helping me stay focused.

2. What is your favorite book cover?

That honestly depends on my mood and what books I’ve just discovered. For today, I’m going to say that my favorite cover belongs to Foxfire, Wolfskin, and Other Stories of Shapeshifting Women by Sharon Blackie. This is technically two covers in one because I love both versions. One has a blazing fox seemingly circling with a smokey wolf containing a woman’s face. The cyclical, fluid motion and the dance of light with dark are both elements that I frequently enjoy in covers. The second cover has the other set of elements that usually appeal to me, an intricate visual tapestry that teases the content within in a cool palette of silver and blue.

3. Do you prefer movie or TV adaptations?

It seems like I should like TV adaptations best. A show generally has more room to explore and interpret a story than a movie, but that doesn’t always happen. The Dinotopia mini-series is one of my most-hated shows because it threw out most of the best philosophies from the book and replaced them with a shallow YA narrative with adults restricting teens. That’s especially annoying since I loved the YA Dinotopia novels where teens and adults often show a refreshing mutual respect and support for each other. Because I’ve been burned before and because a TV show is a longer commitment, I often hesitate to watch shows based on books I’ve read. I do have several based-on-books shows I love—like Ice Fantasy, TrollHunters: Tales of Arcadia, and Lupin—but I watched them without reading the books first.

I guess that means I prefer movie adaptations, though that’s still a case by case basis. For instance, I was initially annoyed by how much was cut from Lord of the Rings in the movie versions, but I’ve since realized that the parts they cut really made the story more coherent. I never really understood the whole Sharkey bit with Saruman. On the other hand, Ella Enchanted was a decent book that I almost didn’t read because I disliked the movie so much. The movie seemed like it was trying to make some important points, but even the attempted social commentary felt rushed and superficial.

4. Who’s your favorite book character and why?

Hmm, another tough one. Let’s go with A from the Every Day series by David Levithan. A is a being of pure consciousness who wakes up every morning inside a new body, borrowing it for one day. I find it fascinating watching A take on each new life, initially just trying to avoid disrupting it before finding ways to occasionally help their hosts and still live their own unique life. One of the few places A can achieve a consistent identity is online, where the faces behind words are often automatically masked. It makes me think of my own forays into the digital world. A’s hatred of the children’s book The Giving Tree also gave me cause to ponder. I still carry some nostalgia for that book, though I can see A’s point about how it portrays love as endless sacrifice even when the recipient never gives back.

A close second is Diana from Chasing the Moon. Anyone who can find a practical solution to being suddenly immortal and stuck in a room that won’t release them until they let a devouring monster out of a closet deserves my attention. And she’s human enough that she still runs screaming down the street after releasing said monster, before befriending him.

5. Which author have you read the most books by?

I’d say Patricia A. McKillip for adult fiction. I’ve read 16 of her books so far and I’m working on Kingfisher for a 17th. She is one of my favorite authors for the vivid, dream-like worlds she creates, with storylines that often meander far from the beaten path. For graphic novels, it would be Adachitoka since I’m caught up with Noragami to volume 21. The pen name is shared by both of the women who create the artwork and story.

6. What is your least favorite trope?

I’m going to say the “make someone jealous to make them love you” trope. That whole idea promotes so much toxicity in my opinion. First off, jealousy is not a sign of a healthy or deep love. It is a sign of possessiveness, which can occur without any true concern for the object of that urge. Second, trying to “make” someone love you does not really seem like an act of love either. Thankfully, I’m seeing less of this trope and more attempts to explore relationship-building by healthier routes, but whenever I see it, it really sets me on edge.

7. How do you feel about splitting movies into two parts? (I jus watched the Twilight saga lol)

If it truly warrants it, I have no problem with a two-parter. I didn’t feel like Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows suffered from being split up. What I don’t like is when a story is stretched thin and stuffed with filler because someone wants to get more money from it. The Hobbit movies had good points, but quite a lot of the added material just felt pointless and weird. Of course, the “Blunt the Knives” song was original material, but it still felt off because it didn’t match the more serious tone other parts of the movie struck.

8. What’s your absolute favorite mythical creature?

Currently, I’d say the kitsune, a Japanese fox spirit. Their style of shape-shifting is the kind I most covet, the ability to change into anything from specific people to animals, plants, and even inanimate objects. They’re also tricksters, another thing I love, clever illusion-masters who are still more likely to co-exist peacefully with humans than their Chinese and Korean counterparts, húlíjīng and gumiho. Though some types of kitsune are considered good and some evil, I prefer the ones who exist in the moral gray zone, capable of compassion but also with their own agendas. They’ll keep their promises, but if you harm them or their loved ones, watch out!

9. When’s the best time to read?

I generally prefer to read in the evening, when I’ve either done most of my to-do list or decided to call it quits for the day. With nothing else prodding my mind, I can sink fully into the story. A cup of tea to sip is always nice too.

10. What genre do you not usually read but would like to try?

Lately I’ve been thinking about reading more horror. I was fairly sensitive to violent and gruesome imagery as a child, but my tolerance has increased over time. Visual media can still be too intense for me, but in print I can usually handle it. This may be partly from my accidental strong-stomach training resulting from reading Elizabeth Bear novels while eating lunch (I always hit the grossest parts right in the middle of eating). A lot of recent additions to the horror genre also explore thought-provoking and socially relevant themes rather than just being about flatly evil monsters chasing people, so I think it’s a good time to give it a try.

11. What is the best book you’ve read in 2020 so far?

Well, at the time that I received this nomination, it was Slay by Brittney Morris. I mentioned Slay in my lineup of book recommendations for my last Sunshine Blogger Award, but let me just reiterate that it is awesome! I loved Morris’ vision of a game space that could provide cultural celebration and safety for diverse Black players, who so often find the opposite online.

Looking back from now, I would also add Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas, which features a trans brujo trying to help an energetic spirit, and A Song Below Water by Bethany C. Morrow, which does an amazing job of developing the relationship between found-sisters Tavia and Effie. Like Slay, both are among the few books where I had not wished for even one thing to be slightly different.

My Nominees:

Lotus Laura



The Alchemist’s Studio

Whispering Stories

Emerald City Bookworm

Myth Crafts

My questions for you:

  1. Name one place you really want to visit someday.
  2. What is the perfect end to a day?
  3. Which do you prefer: Cooking for someone, having someone cook for you, cooking for yourself, or takeout?
  4. For reading, what format do you like best (print, electronic, audio, etc.)?
  5. Other than looking at a clock or phone, how do you check the time?
  6. What kind of ending to a story makes you mad?
  7. If you had a time machine, what would you use it for?
  8. If you could control an element, what would it be?
  9. Are colors more or less vivid in your dreams?
  10. What kind of sky lifts your heart?
  11. Where do the lost things go?

100 thoughts on “Liebster Award from Nicole

  1. Congrats! Very deserved! And I had to laugh at your responses to some of the questions! Like keeping a regular schedule is the hardest thing about blogging. Lol oh you’re telling me! Also that abomination of a miniseries Dinotopia really truly deserves so much scorn, I’d love to see a particularly cruel reviewer smash it to bits!! Also those Hobbit movies was the best example of how bad things can be when studios try to shamelessly milk a property. Lol! So anyway kudos again!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you! 😊

      Hmm, maybe I should play cruel reviewer sometime on that Dinotopia miniseries. 😈 There’s so much bash-worthy material there. Except then I might have to watch it again. 🤢 Thanks, I was pretty sure other people found it awful, but it’s good to know for sure!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You definitely need to review Dinotopia. I understand the revulsion to watching it again, but you know great artists all suffer for their art. It’s just a sad fact of life. So anyway I say do it! Lol tell me you will!!

        Liked by 1 person

          1. So I think I’ve found it on YouTube. Starts off with a scene clearly aping Titanic. We cut to a cesna with two bickering dudes and their dad who sounds (and somehow looks sorta like) McGruff the crime dog. He’s taking them out for flying lessons. One son vaguely resembles Anakin Skywalker and the other looks like a young Chris Isaac. They’re flying out to sea, way way out, I can’t see land anywhere. Is that a good idea when you’re teaching someone how to fly? I’d never question McGruff’s methods, but at least keeping visual contact with the coastline seems smart. So anyway they fly straight into a huge storm and crash. What was McGruff doing during all this? There is a brief shot earlier where he appears sort of slumped to the side. Was he asleep? Did he fall asleep while giving his unlikable sons flying lessons?!?
            Anny and Chris (actually Davey and Carl) wash up on a beach. They briefly whine about McGruff-dad, then immediately start heading inland. Wow, a whole 10 seconds of mourning. Your father obviously meant so much to you. By the way, this place is clearly Dinotopia. HOW FAR OUT DID THEY FLY?? IN A CESNA?!? FOR FLYING LESSONS?!?!?

            Liked by 1 person

            1. So as I said they head inland, hoping to find a phone. For two people who’ve been tossed around in the stormy sea they’re very dapper. I would have probably collapsed from exhaustion after such a taxing experience. Chris Isaak looks right at home on the beach. And well he should, I mean, he’s Chris Isaak after all.
              The scenes of them marching along is supposed to instill in the audience a sense of isolation which slowly builds into wonder at the natural beauty that surrounding them. The locations are amazing, the movie they’re found in is not.
              They glimpse a dinosaur statue and exclaim that they don’t know what it is. It’s a dinosaur statue, guys. It explodes. Muh dudes are thrown back by the force. A comic relief Englishman emerges from the smoking hole of the statue to explain he has permission from some council to “explore ancient sites” – and destroy them I guess?!? Btw, where he was positioned during the blast would have left him totally deaf, if not dead. He also seems unconcerned that his reckless methods of “exploration” via explosives sans properly securing the blast area might have injured/killed two innocents. The two dummies don’t seem much alarmed either though, so perhaps I’m making a mountain out of a mole hill.
              I’m skipping ahead till I see some dinosaurs…

              Liked by 1 person

            2. Ok, I think you just wrote the first episode of this review. 😂🤣 Oh, wow, that is terrible. Thanks for the tip! I’ll see if I can track the full thing down. I actually have an idea of how to work this, although now I’m thinking your review would be way funnier.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Thank you for the encouragement! I wrote it imagining like I was a foreign correspondent reporting back to you with what I found – with all snark the subject deserves, lol. I still think you should write up a review. Your sensibilities would lend it a uniqueness that I very much want to experience. I’d like to continue too… I don’t like to disappoint… but where would my review go? Not on “burnt thumb”, I wouldn’t want to post it there. Eh I’ll have to just figure it out. So anyway, I’ll do that while you do your idea, ya? I anticipate your idea will work great! Dearly hope I’m not being pushy. 🙂

                Liked by 1 person

                1. I think that was the perfect tone for dealing with that bewilderingly bad mini-series. And you were making connections I never would have seen, so that’s why I was enjoying it so much. You had me laughing even harder than Honest Trailers usually do! 😄

                  I was initially wondering the same thing about whether the review would fit in with Fool’s Mirror or if I’d have to find some other place. I think my idea might allow me to slip in some mythology references, but I’ll have to do some thinking. I will definitely keep it in mind, though!

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. That’s some breathtaking high praise, and it means a lot coming from you, thank you.

                    Ya I’m at a loss for where my review will go. I’ve written a lot more already and I JUST hit the 20 minute mark of this 4(?) hour garbage fest. I’ve even pulled some punches to cut down the length of the review so far. I can’t stand these two brothers and a scene I just saw just showcases how poorly realized their characters are. So they’re stuck in some human outpost that looks like a shantytown, and the people here look like Dickens Faire players mingling with the cast of an Aladdin stage play. David and Carl have determined they should head out to Waterfall City. They’re settling in for sleep under some gross, mildewy looking blankets (remember how everyone in the book looked disheveled? Neither do I.) when they pitch little hissy fits at one another. Carl says when they reach Waterfall City they’ll find a means of escape or call for rescue. I think the by the wording of the dialogue that the script means for him to be frustrated or angry, but the actor’s delivery doesn’t rise above a casual conversational tone. David sneers (and I use that word _only_ because it seems like that’s what the writer envisioned given the context of the scene, because the actor playing David is somehow even more bland): “Do you really think some place called Waterfall City is going to have telephones?” Uh… why not? “Waterfall City” is just some prosaic name, like Atlantic City, and that town has telephones. His rejoinder is just baffling. David continues by saying that this place has “new rules” and that they better learn them. What does that mean? Maybe he means this place has a different culture/perspective/set of laws than what they’re used to? If so he phrased it in the dumbest way possible. Carl shoots back “screw the rules! I’m not giving up on dad!” …Excuse me what? Honestly, does Carl have early onset dementia? Those two phrases he utters (in a completely stale tone remember) aren’t linked in any logically coherent way. This whole exchange is nonsense. They continue bickering like brats and I get disgusted.

                    The point is: viewing this scene brought to mind your op about how Dinotopia’s real downfall how petulant and quarrelsome the protagonists act. This really REALLY clarified just how right you are. When you were a kid did you ever read Jules Verne’s book Two Years Vacation? To sum it up it’s like a Victorian Lord of the Flies but instead the schoolboys band together overcome every daunting adversity they face. Very positive story. This miniseries would be so much more powerful like that. Maybe it will reverse course, I’m sure they’ll have to work together since the English guy is _obviously_ going to be the antagonist.

                    Jeez sorry for the wall of text. Didn’t realize. Don’t worry I don’t feel entitled to your reading it. 😂

                    Liked by 1 person

                    1. Oh, I am enjoying every word of this “wall of text”! 😂 I’m sympathizing with you for slogging through that junk, but your commentary is pure gold.

                      You know, at the time that I watched this I didn’t have a clear concept of what bad acting looked like, but in hindsight, oh, so much bad acting. Not that even good acting would have made some of those conversations understandable, let alone impressive.

                      The only Jules Verne I’ve read so far is A Journey to the Center of the Earth, but now I’d really like to read Two Years Vacation. I’ve always steered clear of Lord of the Flies precisely because it sounds like it gives up on cooperation from the get-go. I don’t deny that competition and violence are part of human nature, but I also think our cooperative side is often ignored or trivialized. Thanks for the recommendation!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    2. Thanks Ceridwen it’s tremendously exciting to read your words. It’s really gratifying. Also! I’m feeling wary of your wrath for hijacking your comment section for my review. Lol, feel free to use mine in some act of revenge.
                      It’s refreshing to hear a nuanced view of competition/cooperation. Yes the human condition requires both, depending on the situation. Verne’s story just really blew my mind as an impressionable kid. I’ve never read Journey! Recommend?
                      Ya, I barely remember anything at all about Dinotopia except that I really didn’t like it. Couldn’t really judge acting performances lol. But really there are so many people to blame.

                      In fact, after watching more I’ve got a new theory about this movie. We first have to return to the scene that introduces our leading men: as they board the Cessna McGruff impatiently urges David on, grumbling about David’s bookreading habits. 🤔 Carl on the other hand is enthusiastic (or as approximate to enthusiasm as the actor can emote) about getting the chance to fly. 🤨
                      Now, recall their petulant tantrums the night they’re in the shantytown. Carl takes charge immediately by flat out informing his brother what their strategy moving forward shall be, spotty and questionable as it is. David “pokes holes” in Carl’s plan, though his points are bs nonsense. He posits learning the different “rules,” whatever that could mean. Carl responds with harsh words that would lead viewers to suspect anger, though it conflicts with the thespian’s dispassionate delivery.
                      My gut tells me that this is the scriptwriter’s feeble attempt at characterization. I suspect Carl is envisaged to be something like a brash go-getter; he loves his previous life and eagerly want to leave Dinotopia. David, even more improbably, is intended to be a bookish, cerebral thinker. He is cautiously open minded about this strange new world. Now that’s why no matter how bland the actor playing Carl is, the actor playing David comes off even blander. It’s the actor’s poisonously sad attempt to portray a contemplative nature. In sum, the script is weak in developing its characters, so weak that the viewer has to waste his energies concocting theories to explain the near complete absence of personality traits in its leads.

                      I’m stopping right there before you ban me.
                      You’re always the best!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    3. No worries about wrath or revenge! I always prefer a lively comment section. Besides, I wouldn’t want to miss this. I don’t know if your review will get the traffic it deserves here, but I’m glad at least one version of it will be living in my comment section. 😁

                      About Journey to the Center of the Earth: No, not recommended at all. That book is the reason I never read any more Jules Verne and howled with laughter to discover he criticized H. G. Wells for “making things up” as a sci-fi writer. 🙄 It was kind of like the Dinotopia mini-series but underground and with only two characters. Somewhere between the giant cavemen and prehistoric sea reptile battles underground (with an underground sea and sky) and them exiting through a volcano, my belief lost all suspension. Anyway, I’m glad to hear that he’s written some better stuff.

                      Your commentary is showing me how much I did forget about the mini-series, but I do remember a fair amount because I brooded on it so much. It was especially annoying to recognize the bland characters you’re describing as flat versions of types in the books. David and Carl are a lot like Raymond and Hugh from Windchester, except they’re brothers and barely developed. Just curious, did you read many of the books?

                      Liked by 1 person

                    4. I don’t trust you, I know you’re trying to get me to drop my guard so your revenge will be all the more exacting. Alright well if you’re down with my posting, I’m down. And I don’t care if no one else actually sees my review, it’s fun just as it is.
                      Yikes Journey sounds atrocious. Now I’m worried I’m seeing Vacation through rose colored glasses. It’d be sad to find out all my fondness for it comes from boyhood lack of discernment…
                      I had the first couple Dinotopia books. You know really, much like the miniseries I only have hazy memories of those books, beyond knowing I relished the world-building. Do those characters appear in the main trilogy or the spinoff (y.a.?) series? I did not read those.
                      So cool, let’s keep the party going:

                      So David and Carl are guided by the Englishman to the grungy human settlement that he calls a “bus depot”. For a place promising mass transit it exists in a state of pre-industrialization. The brothers partake in some weak verbal repartee.
                      Then an ankylosaurus bursts into sight. The prehistoric creature crashes madly through every structure in its path. The people scatter in terror. The brothers’ English guide acts completely unperturbed, yet everyone else is screaming in panic. Why is he so positively disinterested? The brothers duck behind a railing to watch the proceedings. They aver dismay, but of course the actors’ energies don’t rise to the intensity that this scene calls for. The ankylosaur swings it’s massive club tail at a fleeing human (!) and the shot cuts away. He had fallen to the ground as the club was crashing down on him; I can’t imagine he wasn’t killed. This is a major departure from the books that I remember.
                      A young sleepy-eyed woman emerges from around the corner and confidently but delicately confronts the dino. She places her palm on its head. It opens its mouth and she yanks something out. As she turns and departs she calls to the cowering townsfolk: “toothache.” So the dinosaur was driven into a deadly rampage because of a toothache. Glad that that one guy’s family will get some closure. Anyway, the people show their appreciation to the woman with a polite golf clap. Very resilient people.
                      Englishman explains to Carl and David that the woman is “Dinotopian, 20th generation.” I recollect something about humans developing psychic bonds with dinosaurs from the books. I may be wrong, but I thought that any human could form this kind of connection with a dinosaur. This dialogue implies you have to be magical. Englishman informs them he’s now abandoning them, but presents them with his card. The card is professionally manufactured cardstock and conveniently wallet sized. It’s just like if a movie’s prop dept. ordered them on Amazon, rather than take the time to handcraft something the Dinotopians would have created. The card reads “Crabb’s Curios” and it’s painfully obvious that the lettering has been printed from a computer printer. It’s really jarring. What a lazy props dept. Englishman aka Crabb then leers evilly at them as he takes his leave. This is to foreshadow the treacherous turn he’s going to take later in the film. “I’m not sure I trust him,” says David in his characteristic dull drone. I love how he hedges his words. “Why not..?” asks Carl with expression vacant. Wow, this conversation is as soaring as Sir Isaac Newton having a round-table with a bunch of Sir Isaac Newtons.
                      The pair then decide to find a map. Not a bad idea, finally!!! The map they find was also printed at Kinkos. They decide to take “the bus” to Waterfall City in the morning.
                      We then cut to nightfall and they have their insane squabbling match that we discussed earlier.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    5. So I was looking into Two Years Vacation, and a couple things: First, it was published almost 20 years after Journey, so his writing probably had improved by then. Second, I saw a review that implied Vacation helped inspire Lord of the Flies, though I’m not sure I trust it given it lists Journey under his “truly extraordinary adventure stories.” I’m still definitely interested in reading it if I can find it.

                      Of James Gurney’s Dinotopia books, I’ve read the first two. Those have similar characters, but I’m pretty sure the other two he wrote both take place at other times. A few of the initial characters make cameos in the related YA books, like Bix in Windchaser. It’s more like Rick Riordan Presents than a series, though, since a variety of authors contributed one-off stories with a different cast in each. Scott Ciencin was one of my favorites, though I also really loved Hatchling by Midori Snyder.

                      Oh, wow, the Kinkos map! That is hilarious! 😂😂 I remember the special effects were kind of gimpy in places, but I don’t think I paid much attention to the props. And you’ve confirmed my suspicion that they did away with the cool “3 mothers Irish” way that Dinotopians used to identify their background. Guess they didn’t want to think that much about their characters.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    6. I have to find it again too, no matter how bad it may turn out to be that can’t take away my fond childhood memories.

                      Ya the special effects: I can believe it was mind boggling for tv in 2002 but I noticed they reused dinosaur animations to save money. I don’t want to me too nitpicky though, this is already turning into a novilization more than a review. But anyway, how’re you doing today?

                      So the next scene opens with the morning sun already mounting the sky. Our heroes shamble over to an odd looking building representing the “bus station” or whatever. By the look on their faces they are mildly happy to see that the sleepy-eyed young woman from yesterday is milling around there too. They greet her and she introduces herself as Marion. David, who can’t be younger than twenty, gives her some polite praise for yesterday in the manner of a well behaved child. I say that because his body language signals a shy boyishness to me. Is this an attempt to convey bashfulness towards Marion? A budding romantic subplot? That should be amusing. When he fails at remembering the species of the rampaging dinosaur Marion gently cuts in: “ankylosaurus”. She pronounces it like “ankle-uh-sore-us”. That sounded wrong to me so I youtube’d an educational program from pbs and the paleontologist hosting it said it more like “ang-ky-low-sore”. Perhaps there isn’t a standard pronunciation, or perhaps the filmmakers didn’t care about diligence.
                      Marion explains in a staid Mid-Atlantic accent that she’s “training to be a leader” and that she must be “calm in a crisis” to “inspire others”. That’s all fine, but this is the moment when it hit me: the actress is playing Marion practically as sedate as David and Carl. What the hell is going on here?!? I’m imagining the director standing behind the camera shouting to these actors, “Less emotion! Yes, yes! I want more languish!” It doesn’t make any sense. I think we all were hoping for a character with a little (lot) more energy to balance out the “subtlety” of the brothers. By the way, Carl is behaving all sheepishly around Marion too. Love triangle?
                      She comforts the guys in regards their situation and states that everything will be explained once they reach Waterfall City and “register”. Hot-blooded Carl interjects that “they don’t want to register for anything.” He delivers his lines with the gravitas of ordering from a dollar menu – and nothing looks appetizing. The director must truly have been in the thralls of ecstasy! Brainy David just stands there and says nothing. Marion gives them a sympathetic look. They carry on walking. Aren’t the brothers going to ask what she means by “register”? What does registering entail, and what’s the purpose? Why is there such a shroud of secrecy around Dinotopia? The boys don’t even stop a moment to rethink the wisdom of going to Waterfall City.
                      Next we see a dinosaur. It’s a giant brachiosaurus being fitted out with plates of armor. You’d think the pair would be reluctant to get near it after their first encounter with a dinosaur, but they aren’t particularly fazed. Instead they ask what the armor is for and Marion replies that it’s protection “to stop him from getting killed.” They fail to press her for more information about this possible threat. Even David, and he’s a brainiac. Some person shouts that “the bus” is secure. Haha, they’re referring to the dinosaur as a bus, like this is Dinotopia’s version of public transit! Haha, why that’s so silly!… ha.. I’m so disappointed in you, Dinotopia. Are you really stealing gags from the Flintstones? The brachiosaurus turns to the camera and grumbles, “Eh, it’s a living.” Carl yanks on a bird’s tail and it shrieks like a factory whistle. David triumphantly exclaims “yabba dabba do” and Marion merrily slides down the dinosaur’s big long tail. Lololol no, none of that last bit happened, but if you’re going to steal the “dinosaurs as modern conveniences” gag you might as well steal everything.
                      Anyway, the trio climb aboard and set out for adventure. Destination: Waterfall City!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    7. I’m doing fine, and a lot better for reading the next installment of your review! I always end up smiling and laughing. The Flintstones “bus” really cracked me up! 😂 And honestly, that would have made a better scene because there would have been personality in it. What was that director thinking?

                      Hmm, yeah, how special effects look tends to change based on what we’re exposed to. I remember thinking the original Jumanji movie had really cool effects when it first came out. Then I saw a clip of the monkeys and it was just like, wha?! Their fur looks so fake! 😲

                      There definitely is a standard pronunciation for ankylosaurus and there are no “ankles” in it. I have heard a few people say “an-kee-low-sore-us,” but the official one is what you heard on pbs. Ugh, even the Dinotopia books are now outdated compared to paleontology, but at least they got their scientific names correct. I actually learned of a few new species from them (Yes, I am a total dinosaur nut).

                      Liked by 1 person

                    8. Pleased to hear you’re well and having fun with the review, too! I hope you like it as much as I enjoy your feedback and encouragement! That “bus” stuff was just do out of place for Dinotopia…

                      Jumanji. Wow that takes me back, I don’t think I’ve thought about that movie in decades. Lol, I read the skimpy little children’s book and was bewildered that the movie was so different. I bet the effects look bad; just think what must go into modern effects to just be boilerplate for audiences!
                      Thanks for the clarification about ankylosaurus! That’s really cool to know hear your a dino fanatic; I used to love dinosaurs too, let me ask how did you kept the magic about them alive for yourself?

                      We find our heroes traversing the Rainy Basin atop their majestic brachiosaur steed. It really is kind of cool looking and I remember it from the book. Marion informs them that this place is the abode of the carnivores, but they have little to fear as they’ve brought extra food to appease any would-be prehistoric assailants. “Besides,” she adds, “it’s only 1 in 5 convoys that get attacked.” She pronounces this unnerving fact in a deadpan, like she had recently taken a bunch of medication to suppress her humanity. David actually notices her odd behavior and responds with a sarcastic snicker! He even elects to inquire what kind of “carnivores” she means. You could bowl me over with a feather. The answer he gets is Tyrannosaurus Rex.
                      They get to a wooded area and the dinosaurs halt. They’re spooked. The driver, Marion, and the brothers disembark the sauropod to investigate! They find “hundreds” of tyrannosaurus footprints and fresh droppings. They decide to leave the relative safety of the caravan and follow the tracks on foot!!!!!! Oh good, this movie is about to be over.
                      There is an outpost that Marion wants to check on. A human outpost in tyrannosaur country?!? I don’t know, that sounds sorta foolish. Also, Marion already mentioned that expeditions in the Rainy Basin were rare due to the danger, so how would the outpost receive necessary outside supplies? It sounds like the scriptwriters needed an excuse to put the three in harm’s way for an action scene, and didn’t trouble themselves with how stupid it all appears.
                      Anyway, stormy night falls before our intrepid friends arrive at the fortification. This has a very “Jurassic Park” vibe to it. The outpost looks like a pile of crap just like the “bus depot” or whatever, so I didn’t realize it was meant to appear ravaged until Marion says so. They hurry into the interior of the compound and Marion is shocked to discover something in the rubble. The driver recognizes it too, “The sunstone has failed,” he bleats. Really it sounds like the actor is reading from a cue card. Marion exposits that sunstones are Dinotopians’ source of power and “keeps the outposts and settlements safe”. Safe from what? She suggests getting back to the caravan. The driver says that “the next outpost is 5 hours away. The ‘brachs’ will never carry us through the storm.” I think those sentences sound be reversed. I assume what he means to say is that the brachiosaurus won’t move in this storm and it’d be a long, dangerous trek on foot. But I’m just trying to cull meaning from this drivel. They opt to shelter in the ruins overnight. As the group trudges along 1 or 2 shadowy human figures are visible in the background. Who are those people? Our gang doesn’t acknowledge them.
                      They find a suitable refuge, and Marion and Carl squabble over vegetarianism. I don’t know what to say; it’s world-building but I feel it’s inappropriate given the present circumstances. Once Marion removes herself from earshot David quips to his brother with a grin, “I see you haven’t lost your touch Carl.” OMG there _will_ be a romantic subplot! I’m so excited! We cut to Marion and David chatting. She keeps asking him about Carl and what she calls his “restless spirit.” Lol poor David. He informs her that they’re only half-brothers and have little in common.
                      We cut again to David on a bunk. He’s been shaken awake by the movie’s sound design (tiger’s growl blended with thunder and the creak of timbers). He wakes Carl to report that he heard something. Carl rises from his cot and peers out the window. “Nothing but jungle out there,” Carl affirms. They banter a short time before a tyrannosaurus foot smashes through the roof. I think the scale is off in this shot; the chamber is too tall for a properly sized Rex to literally step on. The group flee outside. We’re treated to shots clearly mimicking Jurassic Park as a tyrannosaur noses around for our heroes. It’s not thrilling because you know the trio won’t die. They’re saved by a squad of flying skybax riders. Their saviors alight to land and greet them. Bookish scholar David deduces “I think… you just saved our lives.” Carl is curious about the pteranodon and begins striding foolhardily towards it. He’s stopped from his reckless action and scolded for being a jackass imbecile. Seriously, he was nearly dino chow moments ago and he still hasn’t grown cautious around dinosaurs. Btw, the skybax captain was apparently awarded the movie role for his baritone voice – it wasn’t his acting ability. He declares that there are still some individuals from the outpost m.i.a. and that our gang better skedaddle while the gettin’s good. The group agrees and depart.
                      That’s all for this chapter, but what a pulse pounding ride! Action! Suspense! Magic gemstones! The promise of unlikely love and some blatant cribbing from the Jurassic Park playbook! What will our friends stoop to quibbling about next? We’ll find out together next time on Dinotopia!

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                    9. Yes, it’s been the highlight of my WordPress time and sometimes of my entire day lately!😊

                      Hmm, that’s an interesting question about preserving the magic of dinosaurs. I don’t know that I ever had to work on that. I’m always excited and thrilled to catch up on dino news. Movies and fiction are less likely to interest me now because most just make them monsters, which is boring. I’d rather have the science. Maybe it’s the sheer diversity of their species that keeps me fascinated, or maybe it’s how what we know about them keeps changing so fast. Or maybe I’ve just been at it for so long, it’s a habit. 😅

                      Ok, after reading your review, I had to go look a few things up. First off, Rainy Basin is at the center of Dinotopia on the map, with most of the towns sensibly outside it. It’s very unlikely they’d drag dolphinbacks (maybe wetbacks, since there were no dolphins in this series) through there to get to Waterfall City unless they started in Treetown. Since no one was living in trees, I’m going to have to go with your guess that they just wanted an action scene. And oh, wow, a T-Rex foot actually crashes through their roof? That’s beyond bizarre. 😂

                      And the sunstones…I don’t even know where to start. Well, how about, if it’s raining, duh, of course the sunstone “failed”! They’re powered by the sun, hence the name. Also, pretty sure the last one to make it to the surface got tossed in the ocean after it seemed to go One-Ring on Lee Crabb. Even if this is present-day Dinotopia rather than 1800s Dinotopia, I doubt sunstones would make a comeback after that stunt.

                      It’s weird that I remember the vegetarianism argument but not the sunstones. Though on that note, I thought it was very artificial-feeling. Who asks for chicken in the middle of a jungle anyway? Meat spoils quickly in hot humid climates. I didn’t see any refrigerators on the brach-“bus.”

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                    10. I like sharing some laughter together!I hope your rl isn’t getting too stressful, though. You can let off some steam now! Btw, when do I get some details about your plans for Dinotopia?

                      Reading your reply I see you’re an obviously intelligent person with a genuine love for paleontology. It’d be more fun imagining you in the Dinotopia movie than watching brothers pokerface and pokerface jr. On the other hand, it’d be bad being stuck in this Dinotopia/Jurassic Park mashup universe. I understand about lackluster fare featuring dinosaurs. There was a film called Veloci-Pastor that got some buzz recently for its hokey title and premise. Ugh, what awful bait!

                      Thanks for the information! The writers definitely workshopped it and decided they needed some action to hold viewers interest. The sunstones sound like they’re going to be magic to me. How else could these smallish rocks protect the human towns from… something?

                      “Artificial” is a good word to describe a lot of the dialogue heavy drama. They’re all nitwits, in the case of Carl asking for a burger or chicken he seems to have forgotten he’s been in Dinotopia the past several days. It’s so crazy.

                      But speaking of crazy…

                      We open on a smooth grassy veldt; hills and mountains cascade gracefully in the distance. The caravan is continuing the long march to Waterfall City, and we find Marion and Carl already in a “heated” exchange. It’s so good to be back in Dinotopia. They’re debating self defense and dinosaurs’ place in Dinotopian society. It would be some nifty character development except that it’s weighted down by their unabashed stupidity. I don’t want to wade into the ethical minutiae myself, but here’s a lowlight showcasing their level of discourse: “I love my dog back home, but he’s not getting a driver’s license,” Carl reasons, completely impressed with himself. First off, I believe that that’s missing the point. I _think_ the argument is that in Dinotopia dinosaurs are rational beings capable of reasoning, therefore they deserve a certain level of rights. Seriously, Carl’s seen dinosaurs telepathically communicate with people, and Marion has at least presented herself as possessing the ability to understand dinosaur grunts. Also, purely on the basis of rhetoric, would Marion even know what a driver’s license is? Evidently she does and is astounded that he feels superior to dinosaurs. It goes back and forth and Marion says some very dim things as well. The scene dredges up vague recollections of ungifted classmates debating civics back in high school. Or college. 😦 David coyly asserts that he agrees with Marion. Kiss ass.
                      (Btw I’m not saying I’m gifted; lol needless to say I’m not.)
                      Then we get a pan of glorious Waterfall City from the books rendered in decent computer animation. The brothers take in the marvel with tepid little grins. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” confirms David. You. Sure. Look. It…
                      A huge globe over the arching gateway depicts Pangea. David informs Marion that “your world map’s a little bit off. America isn’t joined to Europe.” She describes Pangea to him. Jeez. I’m surprised you didn’t know that, David. Carl declares, “I’m surprised you didn’t know that, David.” I’m red with embarrassment that Carl and I are on the same wavelength here. This also really undermines David’s nerd cred. Just imagine what his coworkers at Geek Squad would say! Honestly, being “smart” is David’s single informed attribute. What were the scriptwriters thinking?!
                      Legions of finely dressed denizens throng the streets and palisades to welcome the newcomers. The brothers are considered celebrities, there have been few new arrivals to Waterfall City from the outside world. That sounds like a contradiction from an earlier statement – oh well I’m not going back to check.
                      The brothers are ushered along to the palace with pomp and spectacle. At the steps of the palace they find a man in Elizabethan attire descending to meet them. “Who’s that guy?” Carl drawls, “He looks like a clown with all those robes on!” “Hello father,” Marion says warmly. Oh Carl, your loose lips have have betrayed you again! Har har! But really, Ceridwen, do me a favor and say “who’s that guy?” aloud in a deep, dull monotone. Lol that’s exactly how the actor delivers it! I love it! Father and daughter engage in a bout of small talk before he turns to the two brothers and officially extends Waterfall City’s hospitality to them. The crowd erupts with applause. Carl and David hastily interject with their concerns about McGruff-dad. They want search parties!!! Excuse me? I’m mystified. When they talked to Marion at the “bus depot” they said they “just wanted to go home.” Now there’s hope that McGruff is alive…?
                      We cut to the senate while Marion’s father, Waldo Seville, has the floor and is concluding his address. It’s some exposition about where Dinotopians come from. The senate bursts into cacophonous cheers. These folks sure are easy to please. David and Carl observe the chamber around them. They’re encircled by masses of Elisabethans and dinosaurs. It’s surreal. The pair are presented with a book that contains all the names of castaways on Dinotopia and are made to sign. David must have taken a calligraphy course because his penmanship is simply elegant. Btw, certainly almost everyone who washed ashore would have been illiterate sailors, right? Most of those signatures would be X. They are congratulated and informed that soon they will take a “saurian life partner,” which Marion explains is a human/dinosaur relationship “like a marriage.” The boys are understandably nonplussed, and I am too. I would laugh in their faces, turn right around and run. David, in a shot that’s awkwardly framed and I suspect is meant to be comedic, answers “Thank you for the offer but we have to get home.” Carl tags this with: “Our dad’s still out there.” Does this dialogue have the ring of schizophrenia to you, too? These guys are impenetrable. Waldo avers that escape from the island is impossible. They take this news in stride. Impenetrable!!! They are requested to address the senate and describe the current state of the outside world. David uses this opportunity to embarrass himself. Also, frankly speaking, the Dinotopians don’t cover themselves in glory during this scene either as they scoff and guffaw at David’s fumbling pronouncements on the moon landings and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Where’s the spirit of inquisitive enlightenment? Is it meant to be a humorous reversal of circumstances to see a room full of foppish Tudors and dinosaurs sneering at the ridiculousness of the real world? The scene does have a bizarre “Gulliver’s Travels” vibe about it. Carl next mounts the stage. He has fire in his eyes. Evidently he is not taking things in stride after all. You know what? Good for him. He lambasts his hosts as he recounts the plane crash that stranded him in Dinotopia. He storms off, and a musical sting lets the audience know that they should feel tension right now. It seems that for all the cheer and celebration, trouble is rumbling in Dinotopia!

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                    11. It is fun! Aside from delaying my ability to read and respond to your comments, rl is actually on an upswing. Of course, that could be my rain-joy talking. Hopefully it’ll see me through when the sun comes back.

                      Since you ask about plans…I’m going to give myself a month or so to get started, partly so I can look for those last two Gurney Dinotopia books. I’m thinking I’ll bump one kind of complicated topic down the line to make room for the review. I have a hard time writing when it’s hot, so it’ll be nice to have something quick and fun. I’m thinking I’ll do a bit of a comparison between the books and the mini-series so that I can work in a little mythology-related stuff. Your review has given me more to work with there by reminding me about the sunstones. They’re part of the downfall of a Dinotopian Atlantis, so really the opposite of protective. I figure referencing the books will also put my gripes in context. 😁

                      Hmm, yeah, I don’t know that I’d want to be physically inside this disaster revision of Dinotopia. Then again, I might be able to actually get the boring characters to emote by complaining and poking them until they run screaming for the hills. What would be really fun is if I could enter the mini-series as a narrator in the style of George of the Jungle! I could argue with characters, maybe change things here and there…😈

                      Veloci-Pastor? Ugh, that sounds nearly as bad as Hot Pterodactyl Boyfriend, a real book I once encountered in the teen section of the library. I was hoping it was a metaphor, but no, it’s literally supposed to be a young woman falling for a pterodactyl who is somehow attending her school as a student. That was even more unsettling to see published than (also a real book) Amish Vampires in Space.

                      Good point about Marion just taking “driver’s license” in stride. Didn’t she ask what a chicken was? Unless this Dinotopia has brach “bus” licenses. 😅

                      Waldo Seville?! Is that actually his name? even if it isn’t, that’s how I’m going to think of him from now on. If I think of him at all. I’m going to have to see these Elizabethan clothes they stuck the Dinotopians in. They seemed to favor brightly-colored patchworks in the books.

                      Another good point about the signatures. I think they did deal with that in Windchaser where Raymond comes from a privileged background Hugh is a pickpocket, but overall the people who are profiled arriving on Dinotopia are kind of well-to-do. Maybe it’s a bit like how more rich people survived the Titanic, though you’d think the dolphins would be fairer.

                      Seriously, “saurian life partner”? That was not a thing! A lot of people on Dinotopia have close friends who are dinosaurs, which is just expected given the number of them. Neither Arthur Denison nor Lee Crabb end up with a close dino buddy, though. Lee even hates the “scalies” to the extent that he often avoids them. No one gives him any grief for it. They just let him be. This looks like part of a pattern that really shows how the mini-series abandoned the “utopia” part of Dinotopia. Everything is so controlled, and even though they frame it as having a “spiritual” sense, it ends up just being shallow and rigid. Kind of like the acting style. 😂

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                    12. Wow I got a morning comment, assuming time zones lol. I’m going to go ahead and say good morning, Ceridwen! Btw, how’d you choose the moniker Silverhart?
                      Obviously take your time reading, glad you’re rebounding! What’s rain joy, is it literally joy that there’s rain?
                      Ya I’m excited to see where you go with the topic. Complicated idea? It’ll be hilarious to see a review contrasting the books and the show. Lol. I can’t guess what sort of mythology would go along with it.
                      I don’t like the heat either. I sunburn.
                      Having you just tagging along and complaining or narrating would be infinitely funnier.

                      Hot Pterodactyl Bf you say? How was it, recommend? … lol j/k that’s bizarre. Amish Vampires in Space sounds like genius though. Haha another idea for your posts is a list of the craziest books you’ve encountered.

                      Waldo Seville is his name! And the character is played by the butler from Downton Abbey!!! That’s cool! I’m easily impressed I guess.

                      That is odd that the elite strata tend to wind up in Dinotopia? Perhaps it’s due to utopias as an idea tend to skew “high minded” and lofty, therefore the middle and lower classes get shut out.

                      Shallow and rigid are brilliant descriptors of the series. I don’t understand what they thought they were doing. But speaking of hot hot dino boyfriends…

                      The trio are exploring the shaded colonnades of Waterfall City. David wonders aloud about the likelihood of Dinotopia staying hidden from the rest of the world. “Is that so surprising?” inquires Marion. Yes, it’s absolutely shocking, in fact it’s not at all believable. I thought the filmmakers would pull some kind of “Narnia” explanation for how Dinotopia has managed to elude modern satellite imaging, shipping routes etc. Does this universe just have a little blacked-out area on every world map? Do they draw little sea serpents on it with the caption “thar be dragons heer”? Marion asks if there are no more secrets where the brothers come from. They admit that there are, and she shoots back “well this is another one.” Sorry Marion but “this” is a plot hole, plain and simple.
                      They enter a library. There is some recognizable imagery from the books. David judges that the library must be 100 years old. Not sure how he comes up with that number. The gang then bump into an English speaking dinosaur!! He announces that he is also fluent in French. The cgi effects here are less than stellar. Do you think the script will try to explain how a creature with entirely distinct jaw, tongue and larynx biology could articulate human speech? I doubt it, too. Oh, he learned English in school… Ok… 🤪
                      His name is Zippo, and the brothers will be temporarily quartering with him. We cut to Zippo’s dining chamber. Carl and David are seated at the table tucking into their meals as Zippo waits on them. David (?) praises his cooking and Zippo makes light conversation in his nervous, meandering style. Eventually David inquires if Zippo has a human partner, and the dinosaur replies that he had been partnered with “Sylvia of the hatchery” but that he never sought another after his “soulmate’s death.” His eyes dart anxiously to a large painting glowering over the room. The palette is cold and dreary and Sylvia is imagined by the artist in cartoonish forms. It manages to be both menacing and laughable, it’s like something out of Disney’s haunted mansion ride. Carl likes it though: “Wow! How’d you score a babe like that?” David is repulsed and Zippo starts babbling even more excitably. It’s then that I begin to wonder if Carl is just a massive troll.
                      We cut to a ankylosaurus slopping up it’s food with boorish throaty grunts and chewing noises at the end of a lengthy table. Marion takes her seat beside her father Waldo. He heaps kind words on her. She wants to consult him about the failed sunstone and the troubling behavior of the tyrannosaurs. She posits that “attacks” on the “outer settlements” are occurring because the sunstones’ powers are weakening. Waldo is smitten with her theory and immediately promises to send skybax riders to investigate. Then we move to the next scene. Wow, Dinotopians sure are easy to persuade!
                      Anyway in the next scene a door opens into a darkened interior. David is dazzled by this space despite it being quite mundane. Carl responds with something unintelligible about “nuthouse.” David agrees with whatever Carl said but can’t help but feel this “place” is “incredible.” Does he mean the room that they’re in, or Dinotopia as a whole? I wish David would articulate a complete thought. Just once. Carl then gravely admits to his brother that he thinks that “saurian life partners” is a creepy concept. He refers to it as getting a “lizard girlfriend.” David looks angry at the idea that someone would disapprove of lizard girlfriends. David COULD have said that it’s not a romantic relationship (and that the scriptwriters are incompetent at articulating concepts like “friendship” and “brotherhood” and should have been fired). He doesn’t, though. He just looks angry that Carl would dare besmirch his dream of lizard waifus. “Why do you always turn against everything before you’ve even started?” complains David. Lol I don’t hear David deny that it’s romantic. “What’s the point when we’re going home anyway?” Carl retorts. Wait, I thought the plan was searching for McGruff? They descend to bickering. David asks if Carl “sees that something amazing” has happened to them by arriving here. Carl growls that “no, watching dad die has kind of ruined it for me.” So… no more search parties, then? “You know I didn’t mean that,” David whimpers. It’s like each actor received a different draft of the script and the director told them to just wing it. The verbal contest ends with Carl essentially calling David a loser and hotly retreating into the night of Waterfall City.

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                    13. Ha, yeah, my cat woke me up early, so I decided to finish my reply to your comment. Thanks for the greetings!

                      I think the “Silver” came first in “Silverhart.” I love silver, its look as well as its symbolism. Since I was thinking of this as a pen name, I initially thought of “Silvertongue,” but that seemed kind of self-aggrandizing. Then I thought of “heart,” which led me to “hart,” and I liked the possible double-meaning. Not to mention I have a lot of harts/does visiting my place, so it kind of fit. 😁

                      Oh, I just made up rain-joy, but yes, I do love the rain.

                      Oh, yeah, Dinotopia being hidden in the era of Google Earth is completely unbelievable. I’m pretty sure that’s why all the stories seem to be set around the mid-1800s.

                      Oh, don’t get me started on Zippo. He is such a horrible Bix substitute. 😤 And I can’t believe they had the gall to connect him to Sylvia! Especially when they didn’t make it clear that it wasn’t a “lizard girl/boyfriend” kind of arrangement.

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                    14. Cool cat you have, then.
                      You’re very welcome for the greetings. ???
                      I knew there was some interesting backstory to your handle. It’s symbolic! How mysterious…
                      Yes Zippo is so lame, but I wouldn’t mind reading your ruthless smack down. Lol. Bix was way better, even if solely bc the protoceratops couldn’t actually speak any human languages! I don’t think she could… right?
                      I’ve been throwing in names the show brings up to specifically see if you have anything to add. Yep that “partner” thing is infuriating. Just the insinuation is bad, but also that it leads to a misunderstanding that’ll probably drive Carl to the “dark side.” If Carl even approached being a realistic character he’d ask for unambiguous clarification, and David should really understand his brother’s apprehension and clarify straight up. It brings to mind the old adage: if your characters have to act stupid to keep the plot moving then you have a bad movie. That’s it right there. This is a bad movie. There’s one more teeth grindingly inappropriate gag in this installment, but thankfully I think the show eases up on it after that.

                      Waldo and Marion gaze upon the city’s nightlife. Plumes of exhalation escape their lips, but the poor actress playing Marion is wearing what appears to be a two piece that exposes her midriff, with only a sheer gown covering her bare shoulders. She must have been freezing on set!
                      Waldo turns to his daughter and announces that he has something for her. He fishes in his pocket and retrieves a letter. “Before your grandmother Ariana died she gave me this,” he divulges. It was to be handed over after Marion’s 18th birthday. Good Lord. She reads aloud: “Find the light.” Her father happily produces what appears to be a large, felt jewelry box. She delicately opens it to reveal the huge gem within, beaming with an intense light. “ A sunstone!” she gasps. Evidently it had been found by Arthur Denison about “a 100 years ago.”
                      It’s been fitted to a necklace which Marion enthusiastically dons. Perhaps she hopes it will warm her up? But sheesh it’s colossal, and it shines like a car’s high beams. It would work as a handy flashbang but what woman would ever want to wear such a gaudy, unwieldy trinket, and to what occasion? Oh, the “sunstone parade” apparently.
                      Carl can be seen eyeing them from the street below. It might have been emotionally impactful to the viewer except that the actor playing Carl is once again completely blank faced. Crabb emerges from over his shoulder. (Damnit!!! I knew I should have written my predictions about the protagonists’ character arcs in the last installment! I suspect that Carl will have a redemption arc similar to Edmund from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.)
                      “Don’t let the mayor catch you staring at her like that or he’ll run you out of town. She’s not for the likes of us ordinary people.” Crabb poisonously advises. Carl blathers some weak denials, proclaiming that he’s just “looking around.” Anyway the romance subplot is officially underway, I suppose? Are you team Carl or team David?
                      Crabb butters up Carl a bit, calling his brother “an odd sort,” and also wishing him condolences regarding McGruff’s passing. How does Crabb know what to say to perfectly manipulate Carl? Did the fictional character get ahold of the script? Crabb invites him to his workshop whenever he’s inclined, “whenever you get tired of the scalies trying to change you.” Does Crabb have a crystal ball or something…?!
                      The next morning David and Carl are reunited (?!) and strolling along a broad avenue that resembles ancient Egypt. They find Zippo leading a class of small children. Before he said he was a librarian, but now he’s a teacher? I guess he could be both, but I feel like I detect sloppy writing. When the dinosaur glimpses the duo he ceases his instruction and informs his class that the brothers will be joining them today. It would be a clever little comic idea except that the children look possessed; their eyes wide as they chant mottos in unbroken unison. David looks (vaguely) pleased to make their acquaintance but Carl (half heartedly) tries to back out. He is persuaded to stay when he learns Marion will be there too.
                      We cut to a scene of Marion teaching class. She gets annoyed after catching Carl carving a crude image of a stegosaurus on his desk. This is interminable. She scolds him for his childish vandalism before informing him “that that’s _not_ how stegosaurus’ reproduce.” Huh? Wtf, Carl? Was this joke really necessary ?? Btw Carl has the same insipid expression as always, of course. You know, had he just been graffiti’ing his name or something like that the scene might have had some charm; but even for that to succeed the filmmakers would’ve had to make Carl a likable character first, i.e. endow him with some positive traits. For Dinotopia’s preproduction crew: these could include intelligence, gregariousness, selflessness, competence, sympathy, leadership skills, ethics, etc. If you want to aim for a fully realized character you could throw in some relatable personality flaws too, like internal conflict, anger or self doubt. If they DID strive for this they failed. Carl is a zombie 98% of the runtime and the 2% time he breaks from the mold he comes across as petulant and immature. Stegosaurus… isn’t this a family oriented show? What were the scriptwriters thinking?
                      Then they go on a field trip or whatever to see the tablet with the entire code of Dinotopia inscribed. I remember it from the books, “don’t p…” They also briefly discuss the World Beneath. Carl prattles some flippant comments. When Marion discloses that the class has homework Carl gets all huffy and stomps away. The last shot holds on Marion and I can’t tell if her lips faintly pucker into a smile or if she slightly purses them with concern. Or maybe she’s just absently staring into NOTHINGNESS ITSELF.
                      We cut to an establishing shot of the library. Zippo encounters a sulking Carl and strikes up conversation. Their chat eventually leads to an improvised game of table tennis. I think this is as near to positive characterization as we’ll ever get. I might be grasping at straws, but one could interpret this as sort of cute, and promises character growth. Seeds for his redemption?
                      We cut to Marion and David conversing. She wants to talk about Carl. Lol this is the second scene they share together and Marion is once again fixated on Carl. Poor David, again. She’s upset that Carl would quit on her and David retorts that Carl quits “almost everything. He doesn’t know what he wants. I mean I think I know… sometimes. But… sometimes I’m not so sure.” Compose yourself Einstein, before your brain explodes! Heh his wordplay is like a Buddhist riddle: when are you sure of something you’re not sure of? Their talk snakes around to the topic of destiny, which Marion firmly believes in. Then Marion’s lips broaden into a bright, disarming smile. The light in her eyes dance with delight. Whoa. She leans a little closer to David. OMGOMGOMG. She proposes that David come with her to see “the prime sunstone.” David’s stale expression indicates that Marion’s sudden exuberance is simply too subtle for him, and he’s practically a genius, remember. But freaking who cares; did that crusty toad David just get a date?!? OMG this might be a date!! The little man-child is growing up! Also, this is a breakout moment for Marion btw. The actress’s performance could honestly be described as vivacious! Believe me I was beside myself witnessing these approximately 3 seconds! She actually comes across as a human being. For real, a human being in Dinotopia: the miniseries! Maybe this show has turned the corner, and I’ll start giving a shit about these characters. I admit this is the first character moment that I enjoyed unironically. There’s just been so little to get emotionally invested in. David better run home and wash the pit stains out of his filthy shirt. Actually I notice he hasn’t had a change of attire since he first boarded the Cessna. David, go get some new clothes. I suggest a pirate costume would do you well in these new digs. It might even classify as formalwear in Dinotopia. I want to see David try to woo Marion dressed as a Halloween buccaneer.
                      You know, this is the third time this episode I’ve busted this production’s chops for wardrobe issues. Although these actors are clearly 20-somethings, they might be playing high school aged characters. Well Marion definitely is. Thinking back, honestly we all made bad fashion statements as teens, I remember I was the twerp who’d wear like a black hoodie over a dress shirt and tie. Lol. Holy crap with pinstripe dickies!!! 🤣 I swear I _just_ remembered now! I’d be trying to go around on a skateboard falling on my ass all the time. I tried to be so punk rock/goth adjacent. OH I SUCKED!!! I must have been doing that the same time Dinotopia was premiering on tv… that’s too funny. I totally forgot. Know what? I haven’t thought about that in years, you’re my favorite person to chat with. 😎 I’ll ask if you have any funny memories of fashion disasters, but if you decline to answer I completely understand.
                      Anyway, I think I’ll end this chapter here at the threshold of, perhaps, some wonderful new beginnings for the Monkey-Brain Brothers.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    15. Bix was supposed to speak human languages in the book, though the word “speak” is in quotations. Since Arthur had no idea what she was saying in their first encounter, I assume she kind of approximates in a squawky tone. I’m guessing Gurney imagined ceratopsians as having parrot-like vocal tracts, which are capable of producing recognizable words but not the querulous tones of Zippo. Doesn’t he also have human-like teeth too? Ugh. Most Dinotopians just learn to understand multiple dinosaur languages because the majority are, realistically, unable to form human sounds.

                      Oh, no, more sunstones! These things are driving me crazy. 😣 And wait, this mega-bling sunstone was found by Arthur Denison 100 years ago? So this is set in the ’60s? Because the book had Arthur’s journal dated to the 1860s. I don’t recall the clothing looking particularly ’60s, though. 🤔

                      “She’s not for the likes of us ordinary people.” And once again, this highlights the total lack of the egalitarian social structure that was supposed to exist in Dinotopia.

                      What team am I? Let’s go with Team Meh. I know and knew even then who the scriptwriters chose, but characters have to be interesting before I really care much about romances.

                      As for Carl and his intimate stegosauruses…I’ve got a new theory about why the preferred acting style in this series is so dead. It must be to keep viewers from gagging by engaging our mirror neurons so that we keep a straight face through all the “whaa…?” moments. Though at least Marion FINALLY got a chance to be a person. Maybe the director/producer was on break. 😁

                      Ha, I’m pretty sure most people would wonder at my fashion choices now, let alone my teen years. I rarely gave a thought to whether my styles and colors matched as long as things fit and were comfortable. Actually, I think the shirt I’m wearing now was purchased during my teen years. 😅 It’s really long. I guess that was kind of my teenage thing. Long cotton T-shirts with prints of animals on them. With mostly slacks and sweatpants, I think.

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                    16. “Oh, no, more sunstones!”
                      Oh… Not enjoying the sunstones… Well I hate to break this to you…

                      “this highlights the total lack of the egalitarian social structure that was supposed to exist in Dinotopia.”
                      That’s a great point. I assumed that it’s just Crabb trying to influence Carl, without any necessary grounding in truth, but the filmmakers have done such a shit job of portraying Dinotopian society that perhaps Crabb is basically stating something factual. That senate scene struck me as having elitist overtones.

                      “I know and knew even then who the scriptwriters chose”
                      You knew which the lucky man would gain Marion’s love? It’s David, right? No wait Carl!

                      “As for Carl and his intimate stegosauruses…”
                      Stegosaurus and triceratops.

                      “new theory… mirror neurons…”
                      Mirror neurons…? 😮 David’s not the genius here, Ceridwen. YOU ARE!!!

                      “Maybe the director/producer was on break. 😁”

                      “Ha, I’m pretty sure most people would wonder at my fashion choices now”

                      Lol you say these enigmatic things and sorry, but now I’m curious what the hell you mean. For the summer heat myself I’m taking a liking to a little resort casual. You know, navy tee with white anchor print, coffee/khaki shorts, shades, white ball cap, grey-blue converse sneakers with a harringbone design as a sorta youthful accent that’s age appropriate but also subtle enough not to clash with the shirt. No Hawaiian floral prints though, that’s tacky. No one can ever convince me otherwise no matter how much it’s supposed to be trendy. 😂 You’re probably sick of this topic. Like always dismiss any of my questions that isn’t just fun to chat about. Having fun is why I’m here.

                      “Long cotton T-shirts with prints of animals on them.”
                      Your unique and quirky style makes you cool. Evidently you’re a cool genius.

                      Narrator: On November 13th Carl and David Scott fell out of the sky like a ton of bricks. This was due to the negligence of their father, McGruff. They decided to wash ashore as castaways on the mysterious isle of Dinotopia. Can two simpletons survive together on a prehistoric island, without driving the audience crazy? 🎶 cue theme music 🎶

                      We return to Carl and Zippo hammering away at table tennis. A crowd of spectators has formed. Zippo is defeated, but he begs for a rematch. Carl proclaims that dinosaurs have no chance against humans at ping pong. Zippo avers that he’s had more fun playing table tennis with Carl than he’s had “in a long time.” Carl smiles (!) and agrees it’s fun playing with Zippo. It’s kinda touching, I wonder how this production will screw it up? The pair eagerly begin a new game.
                      Next we see Marion and David hustling towards an obelisk-shaped tower. Within, they find a long spiral staircase winding upwards. The tower’s interior is round but the exterior is square? Ok. They race up the stair. David calls for her to slow down as he starts to lag behind. She laughs and says “this is nothing.” The actress is still feeling her oats, she’s bubbly and playful, the actor playing David not so much. But anyway she reaches the landing and a wheezing David follows after, muttering something about asthma. Heh. There is an impressively sized, luminous crystal here at the summit of the tower. Hey, this is from the books, right? I recall something like that. They walk right past the gemstone. Huh, that’s gotta be the “prime sunstone,” correct? Wasn’t that the reason they (literally) raced over here? Instead they walk out to the parapet to glimpse the sprawl of Waterfall City, painted in blazing hues by the sunset. David murmurs “this is fantastic.” David is always asserting that EVERYTHING is amazing. It’s so repetitive, it’s copy/paste dialogue, it’s robotic! Ugh.
                      “I had no idea…,” he adds. What in the world could David mean by that? When he first arrived in the caravan he had a commanding view of the whole city. There was a pan over the length of the metropolis immediately followed by his “astounded” reaction shot. So what does he mean by “no idea”? He had no idea… about sunsets?! I think this is driving me insane. There’s more dumb dialogue and I reimagine things the way they should have been, with cheap pirate costumes. Two figures in the ruddy glow of evening beside the parapet. David flips down his plastic eyepatch. He turns close to Marion and utters in a strong yet distant voice, “for this one magical night David does not exist. Tonight… I am Captain Jack Sparrow!” Lol.
                      Anyway what really happens in the actual film is that the pair double back to the sunstone. Marion exposits that this particular sunstone is the most powerful discovered, and is the source of energy for all Dinotopia. What’s it powering? The most advanced tech I’ve seen here is a couple of rickshaws. Does the stone give Dinotopians the mighty power to use rickshaws? She continues that this sunstone recharges all other subsidiary sunstones. Call me crazy, but I have a suspicion that this is a plot point that will be crucial to the narrative later on…
                      So legend says that sunstones were mined from the World Beneath at the beginning of time. The scene ends with more questions than answers.

                      Sorry, just so exhausted from work schedule. I have to stop here. I never said I wasn’t the worst.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    17. Oh, it was a triceratops plus a stegosaurus! That makes more sense. I was wondering how Carl achieved enough detail in desk carving to portray stegosauruses in an anatomically impossible position. Still a weird joke to just throw in there. 😅

                      Ha, that’s quite the fashion image! I can’t help picturing a pool drink into your hand to round things out. I’ll probably use my typical summer strategy of faceplanting on my bed whenever possible and hoping the heat will go away if I’m very still. Maybe eat some ice cream or drink coconut water too.😁

                      You’re correct, that tower is in the books, only…(thunks head against desk). That wasn’t a sunstone on top. It was an ordinary quartz crystal used as a signal beacon. Like you say, Dinotopia doesn’t really have technology that needs to be powered by anything more than dino muscle and the occasional water wheel. It’s not like the brach “bus” got to skate along on a dinosaur-sized Segway through the forest or had electric rex-prods for security. I don’t think they even had the mini-spiral clocks from the books. That, by the way, was the purpose of this tower in the books. It housed a spiraling clock run by the waterfalls.

                      Hmm, I think the full version of David’s sentence was, “I have no idea how to form a complete sentence.” No, to be fair, he does have some fully voiced thoughts, but dang, I forgot how vague he could be. Funny that he has one of the few lines I remember really liking in the show, but that’s still in the future.

                      Ooooh, that would have been so fun to drop Jack Sparrow in Dinotopia! He’d probably wipe out a village by getting a herd of brachs drunk and end up partying with the T-Rexes in Rainy Basin, but it would a blast to watch! 😆

                      Liked by 1 person

                    18. “Oh, it was a triceratops plus a stegosaurus! That makes more sense.”
                      Lol 😂 😆 😝 I read your first 2 lines and did a double take. But reading further made sense. True I suppose regarding positions, 2 stegosaurs… Well actually don’t listen to me I have no clue.

                      “Still a weird joke to just throw in there. 😅”
                      Ya, seriously they were making Dinotopia!

                      Thanks for the compliment! I understand that you might not have been giving me a compliment but I’ll take what I can lol. Btw, how annoyed are you with all my grammatical errors?

                      “I’ll probably use my typical summer strategy of faceplanting on my bed…”
                      Ha that sounds adorable, good luck! Though, I’m not sure you can “play dead” with temperature like with wild animals… What’s your go-to ice cream? And I’ve never been a fan of coconut water, so tell me what’s the appeal?

                      “That wasn’t a sunstone on top. It was an ordinary quartz crystal used as a signal beacon.”
                      Unfortunately we can’t expect the filmmakers to have respect for the source material and treat it with idealistic notions like “integrity.”

                      “I think the full version of David’s sentence was, ‘I have no idea how to form a complete sentence.’”
                      Lol so you will just tear into these two brothers at some point, right? How many times must I ask?!
                      Oh, have you watched the show recently? Ugh I’m going to be on my toes watching for any POSSIBLE good lines from David. Although honestly I kind of hope I despise it anyway just so you and I can fight over cinematic merits. That’d be a fun little exchange. 😄

                      “Jack Sparrow in Dinotopia!”
                      Yes, this. But I think entertainment value is too much to ask for for this floundering production.

                      Ok, so, this chapter is also short. It’ll probably be that way the next few days because of rl. I am carving time out for mini-sodes though cuz if I stopped I’d miss these conversations.

                      We find vexatious brothers Carl and David sitting in their room. Carl is bouncing a ball against the wall (prick) and the noise distracts Zippo as he lounges with a scroll. The brothers begin arguing – if you can believe it! Carl asks David what book he’s reading. “The Proper Care and Feeding of Humans.” Carl thinks that that sounds “sick.” He declares that he’s escaping in precisely 1 week. David rather understandably finds his brother’s statement amusing and asks about the escape plan. Carl retorts he doesn’t need an escape plan. Lol! Seriously I laughed hard, it’s as good as his delivery of the line “who’s that guy?” So to continue Carl just knows he has to get off this island. He offers David the chance to come along if he’d like. Carl jumps to his feet and begins ranting (in the mildest possible sense) about how the two don’t belong in Dinotopia. David limply counters that he’s studying for graduation. What does he mean by “studying” for “graduation?” He has to mean that he’s studying for final exams, so that he can graduate, right? If David wasn’t already a brain surgeon he’d sure make a mellifluous orator. Also, how long have they been attending school? The editing between scenes would seem to be that this is either still the first day of class or possibly the second. Anyway Carl is inclined to believe that David’s been brainwashed. David rebuts that Carl always finds the negative in everything. He calls Carl’s selfish. It’s true Carl is selfish, and so is David. He discusses how Carl always got bailed out in the past, but now he’s stuck with no one to save him. Huh? It’s like we’re witnessing interacting characters from similar yet distinct alternative realities. Carl always seemed pretty ambitious about finding a means to leave Dinotopia. I don’t understand, but really how can a mortal man like me possibly comprehend the cosmic brilliance of Dr. David, Time Lord?
                      Carl informs David that they’re escaping together. Wha? They blabber some more until David snidely remarks that it was Carl piloting the Cessna. Ah shit, shots fired Ceridwen!!! Carl knocks David into a chair. “If you ever say that again I’ll kill you David,” Carl vows “grimly,” and please imagine those quotation marks so huge that it renders the adverb invisible. It could be the worst line reading yet. Carl retreats and Zippo hears the door slam. “Mammals,” the dinosaur sighs. Har har, the people responsible for this dreck thought ending an intense scene of brother against brother could use a humorous quip. I’m noticing that the comedy is really weak, do you feel the same way? 🤪

                      Liked by 1 person

                    19. Oh, I meant it as a compliment! I’m impressed by the detail in your vision. Except for truly special occasions, I rarely plan my outfits much beyond the basics. And honestly, I’ve learned not to obsess much about grammatical errors online. Unless they’re mine, or in a peer-reviewed academic paper. 😁

                      Oh, I suppose chocolate would be my go-to ice cream. Though I’ve been trying to use coconut water instead because it’s hydrating, has a longer cooling effect without the brain freeze, and has fewer calories. Also, I found a mango-flavored type. I admit plain coconut water is…uninspiring.

                      “The Proper Care and Feeding of Humans.” Ok, now I’m wondering if Marion assigned David this reading so he wouldn’t ask about chicken in the jungle again. 🤭 Either that, or they’re implying the “saurian life partner” is basically the human’s owner. Not sure if that’s more or less disturbing than the “lizard girlfriend” interpretation.

                      Oh, the comedy is so weak, it needs someone to study “The Proper Care and Feeding of Humor” to bring it back. Also, is Carl vowing to kill his brother if he repeats an objective fact? What if–imagining for one wild moment that Carl’s non-plan works and they return home with a live McGruff in tow–they’re asked to testify about what happened? You know, just for insurance and stuff. I sure hope Carl wouldn’t promptly add murder to “flying a Cessna” on his rap sheet. Seems like he could have just done the normal thing and blamed the storm. Oh, well. I suppose if his murder attempt is as energetic as his delivery, David has nothing to fear.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    20. Thanks! 😊 I’m a casual kind of guy but I enjoy looking like I didn’t just roll out of bed. Chocolate ice cream? Classic tastes. I don’t indulge much but when I do I prefer b&j phish food. 😋

                      I’ve never encountered any writing from you that wasn’t immaculate.

                      I wonder if the book title is a reference to an old twilight zone episode where aliens possess a similar tome that turned out to be a cookbook. Your suggestion is fascinating, and I’m sure David’s ulterior motive for reading is to find out. Lol!

                      “Not sure if that’s more or less disturbing than the “lizard girlfriend” interpretation.”
                      Come now that’s crazytalk, what are you, selfish?! Lololol but really they’re both equally unnerving.

                      “the comedy is so weak, it needs someone to study “The Proper Care and Feeding of Humor” to bring it back.”
                      😆 Callback! I love callback jokes! I just did that above, actually.

                      Finding your questions about an aftermath scene pertinent and uproarious. I’m not sure why you said you’re not as funny. I believe in you!

                      Carl is wandering amongst the nocturnal denizens of the city when he comes upon Crabb’s workshop. Crabb ushers him inside. Carl asks about a bass relief depicting a pharaoh-like dinosaur. Crabb explains that it’s an image of Ogthar (? That sounds vaguely familiar but perhaps that’s merely a false memory due to the expectation that these names reference the books?) who once ruled the World Beneath. Carl asks him if he knows a way to get off the island. Crabb says he’s investigated every possible avenue of egress and suspects that there is one way. 🙄 All he requires is the captain’s log for the Rebecca’s Folly, but alas! it’s locked away in the archives of the “ancient library.” The only one who has the key is… Zippo!!! Wow, what coincidence, eh Carl? It’s like this plot development was contrived by bad moviemakers. Carl wants to know why Crabb doesn’t find some means to get it himself. That’s not a bad question. Celebrate 🎉! This is the second time in over an hour of runtime either of the brothers acted with any degree of intelligence. Crabb answers in defeated tones that “they” would never let him near that library, on “account of one of my relatives.” HEY! I bet that’s a reference to the Lee Crabb that you mentioned, Ceridwen!
                      Crabb “suddenly” has an epiphany that a child could see through: Carl might be able to get the log and secret it back to Crabb! “You mean steal it?” Carl explicates, and I _almost_ detect condemnation in his voice, “That doesn’t seem right.” Wtf he’ll assault his brother but the idea of betraying Zippo’s trust is unthinkable?!! Crabb responds by revealing his wooden prosthetic leg. He presents this as evidence of how dinosaurs treat humans when so inclined. He’s definitely not misrepresenting the general truth here, as we’ve already viewed dinosaurs killing innocent people over toothaches.
                      The next scene is another squabble with the two brothers. *grinds teeth* David behaves like a smug jerk. I can believe he’s acting distastefully bc he’s still upset that Carl assaulted and threatened to murder him, but that’s not alluded to and the scene just plays out like petty schoolchildren being needlessly cruel to assert playground dominance. This scene is lazy too, as the boys are just sitting around their dull living space just the same as their last 2 fights. How about making the shot visually interesting, instead of static retreads? Fire the director!!! Thankfully it’s quick and we cut to an enormous amphitheater. I should end here as it promises to be a consequential part of the show.

                      Unfortunately these 2 scenes sucked. They were boring, even with the reemergence of the obvious villain. Also, I noticed you didn’t respond about whether I should hold off on the mini-sodes until I can invest more fully in a proper review installment or not. So, with due apologies, I’m asking again.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    21. Ooo, b&j phish food does sound delicious! That is another thing ice cream has over coconut water. So many more enticing flavors to choose from! 😄

                      You nailed that spelling of Ogthar! I’d forgotten his name, but he’s supposed to be a half-human, half-ceratopsian king of Poseidos, aka Dinotopia Atlantis. Which explains why I was getting a weird feeling about all this “World Beneath” talk. Poseidos was the city that used sunstones in the book. The “World Beneath” was a cave. And a book title. But clearly this mini-series was just based on someone skimming the book for keywords and then reconstructing them into a wobbly-kneed narrative.

                      You know, somehow “Rebecca’s Folly” doesn’t seem like the best ship to follow for an escape. 😶 But maybe the idea is to do the opposite of everything the Folly did. I mean, after all, if it succeeded in charting a safe path away from Dinotopia, why would it be in a Dinotopian library?

                      Ok, so this Crabb is supposed to be a relative of Lee and not a clone somehow resurrected later. I was starting to wonder. I’ll have to see if he wears that same floppy hat, but his behavior so far is such an exact match for ol’ Lee.

                      Oh, I didn’t realize you were asking my opinion of the mini-sodes. By all means, if it works for you, carry on. I enjoy getting to tune in to your review narrative regularly. 😊

                      Liked by 1 person

                    22. I very much want to carry on our conversation but I’m tired 🥱 right now. I’m going to post the review portion and make a second comment after sleep. Good night! 🌙

                      I want to go back to the last argument the brothers had, as a note to the filmmakers: I’m going to elaborate on how lazy the filming is here. It’s basically a repeat of two previous scenes in which the heroes behave irredeemably negatively towards one another in the same mundane location with minimal dramatic impact. Carl receives a letter from Marion scrawled in dinosaur footprint characters. He asks David to read it for him, but his brother refuses, handing him a textbook and telling Carl to learn to read it himself. While it’s a literal interpretation of how a scene like this might unfold it doesn’t rise to its cinematic potential. Take a dialogue scene from a different movie as an example of what I mean: a man and woman are seated at a romantic restaurant. He is confiding something heartfelt to her when he gets to a crucial point and declares he can’t relay anything further at their present location. We cut to a schooner bobbing on the sea under a starry night. They resume their dialogue. It doesn’t make literal sense: did they drive to the harbor, board the vessel and sail out to open water in total silence? It makes sense in the “language of cinema,” we get some varied visuals, shot compositions and interesting sound design for what amounts to the same dialogue scene. This sort of film magic is integral to the visual medium. For Dinotopia, instead of the repetitive visuals with identical negative tones we could shake it up a bit: perhaps the duo are in class taking a quiz when Carl furtively inquires about Marion’s card. David attempts to ignore him and concentrate on the quiz but Carl becomes more insistent. Marion tries not to notice as the two increasingly whisper louder. A musical curlicue accentuates that this is silly rather than petty. It ends with Marion finally addressing the boys and their lighthearted, embarrassed reactions. It’s not a great idea but I think it would lift our protagonists out of the tiresome tonal monotony and negative characterizations.

                      After the establishing shot of an amphitheater we see David sitting on a bleacher, swiveling his gaze back and forth in sedate motions, like a drugged up simpleton. Stupid annoying Zippo is beside him and he’s clucking away excitedly about the show they’re attending. The theme of the performance is the World Beneath. 😳 After some banter to reestablish what we already know David discovers that Carl isn’t sitting next to him. Drugged. Up. Simpleton.
                      We cut to Carl sneaking around in a shadowy hallway. I’m going to guess that it’s Zippo’s place and Carl is searching for the keys to the library’s archives. His wolffish eyes are glued to the floor though, which I wouldn’t expect to be a likely hiding place. Behind that ghastly picture of Sylvia…? Damnit, Carl finds them in a bucket on the floor indeed. Well played, Carl. Aren’t I looking like the fool now? 🙃 There’s a jump cut to the painting of Sylvia though.
                      Back to David and Zippo. “I’m so excited!” effuses Zippo. What, Zippo exited? Who’d have ever imagined this moment. 🙃 The ceremony begins with ye olde trumpeters and brachiosauruses stomping their colossal feet. I think something is wrong with the sound mix. The dinosaurs are too loud in comparison to everything else. Marion dad, Waldo, starts expositing one the World Beneath and the origins of sunstones. It sort of sounds familiar – I think this might be a reimagining from the (2nd?) book.
                      Waldo’s voice plays over a pacing Carl. I assume Carl is feeling guilty for the theft but nothing Waldo says adds any emotional strength to the imagery. Back at the amphitheater, a humanoid shape emerges from the dry ice vapor of a fog machine. There seems to be a headlight around the figure’s neck. Of course it’s Marion. The audience climb to their feet and cheer for Marion standing on stage and doing nothing. Easy to please, these Dinotopians. There’s a quick shot of David and I just want to underline that his face looks extra-punchable here. Carl wanders into view and at first it seems like he’s somehow managed onto a wing of the stage with Marion, but a second later he’s amongst the crowd. Waldo wraps up his speech with how the World Beneath was sealed away. There are fireworks.
                      ~end scene~

                      Wow that was it. The whole thing was exposition, except for the 10s of seconds devoted to Carl’s treachery. They require some kind of action set piece now. There’s been a whole somnambulating parade of stultifying, enervating, draining “dialogue” scenes. We’re due for some action… please?

                      Liked by 1 person

                    23. Ah, I know what you mean. Sometimes I have to wait until I get a night’s rest to respond, no matter how tempting it is to jump into this conversation. Good rest makes for snappier repartee, I believe, so I hope you’re able to get some quality rest. 😴

                      “David discovers that Carl isn’t sitting next to him.” Ha, I immediately got this image of David glancing over and then doing a mildly puzzled frown at an empty space. 😂 It took him that long to notice? Of course, Zippo is really distracting, so maybe Carl used him as cover to sneak off. I’m always eager to blame Zippo. 😁

                      The key is in a bucket? I mean, I know Dinotopia isn’t supposed to be really concerned about security, but that seems a bit weird. Actually, I seem to recall they rarely had keys at all. Well, the bucket-key works out for Carl, I guess. Though him finding the key by staring at the floor makes me think of the Thermians looking for a shoe on the ceiling in Galaxy Quest.

                      I think I found the mini-series episodes on Internet Archive. I was wondering how they had 13 episodes in a “mini” series, but now I see how they stretched it out. My brain did me such a favor in deleting these blah-blah-blah episodes.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    24. So Marion is showing off that head light to a small group of children. Carl ambled into the shot and awkwardly greets her, saying he “really enjoyed the show”. They stroll along together and she gravely pronounces her desire for him to finish her course. He tells her that he’s not really into that whole school thing and he ain’t about to start now. He basically asks “what’s the point?”
                      “Because you’re not the person you want to be,” she softly replies.
                      “But you are?” He rejoinders. Huh? She’s the person he wants to be? Ok ya, I understand what he means but he says it in the most unclear way. Ah, it’s so nice to be back in Dinotopia. She makes a deal with him: if he hates school so much, she’ll tutor him personally one on one. He agrees at once. Yo playa! That’s why they call him L.L. Cool Carl. Ug I’m an awful dork! What a stupid reference… do you even get what I’m talking about? 😂
                      Anyway, she tells him to study for his “footprint exam” in the meantime. Carl’s reaction is probably meant to be surprise at her sneaky tactics, but its so lacking in emotional output that he could just as easily be noticing he’s just stepped on dino crap.
                      We cut to Marion at the head of the classroom. “Your graduation question is ‘how are we to live?’” she announces. We see the younger brother whose name I frankly forget. He makes a corny face that screams “I’m pondering thoughtfully.” His mannerisms make him look like a child. He then uses a dino-footprint stamp and slams out his answer within a couple seconds. Impressive…? It reminds me of those multiple choice scantron exams where you fill in the bubbles corresponding to answers A, B, C, D. There was always some kid who had no idea what the answers were so would color in the bubbles randomly. That’s what it looks like to me. Yet it was probably intended to show what an impressive student he is.
                      We cut away to Zippo the Talking Dinosaur whimpering as he hunts for something on the library book shelves. Carl is with him and he asks what’s the matter. Zippo says that a book has been stolen. Carl turns away to hide the look of guilt on his face. It’s so melodramatic that I cracked a smile. What’s more is I appreciate the bad overacting far more than the bad underacting. Zippo babbles and I loathe him. Carl plays it off like it’s no big deal, books get stolen all the time. He’s right, in the average book’s life cycle it’ll be stolen roughly 800,000 times. Carl you’re the dumbest: no matter what Zippo says you have to play down the idea that the book was pilfered. If Zippo suspects the book got nabbed, he could easily then arrive at the (correct) suspicion that YOU nabbed it.
                      Now we’re back in the classroom and the exam is still going on. Carl barges in. Marion gives a look of restrained anger. Carl Sita down next to little bro and smiles as he starts stamping. Since he wasn’t even in class to hear what the exam question was, I must admit I’m curious as to what he’s writing. I’m dreadfully hoping that there’s a clever payoff.
                      Next scene. It’s Crabb thumbing through a book. If I remember correctly this tome is supposed to be the waterlogged captain’s journal. The prop book looks brand new. Ah yes, Crabb just said that it’s some sea captain’s journal. Carl is rocking around nervously in the background. Carl insists that Crabb now find a way off the island. Crabb tells him to meet him alone at midnight. If I were Carl I’d instantly suspect that Crabb plans to kill me. Instead Carl says he’s bringing his brother along. I remember that the brother liked Dinotopia and didn’t want to leave. What’s “No Plan” Carl going to do about that? Crabb ushers Carl outside where they find what’s-his-name speaking to a parasaurolophus; he’s squinting his eyes and making gestures in such a way that it comes across as an offense ethnic caricature. Crabb says that he’s been brainwashed and that he’s not Carl’s brother anymore, but Carl can’t bring himself to believe that. Anyway blah blah, Crabb is poisoning Carl’s mind. What will become of our brave brothers? How painfully awkward and uncomfortable will Marion and Carl’s private lessons be? Let’s find out together next time on Dinotopia!

                      That was a lot fun getting back to! I’m sorry I sorta deserted you while you were dying of the heat. Anyway the next installment is finally arrived, just for you!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    25. Yay! I did miss your reviews on this. It’s like having an honest trailer that can actually touch on everything in the show!

                      Not sure if I’m getting the reference specifically, but “Cool Carl” does sound familiar. I’m debating whether to Google it or set the hounds of my restless mind on the trail. But I definitely get what you mean about the scene in general. Marion is clearly not used to picking up on the “score” face. Of course, Carl’s lack of expressiveness may be helping. 😅

                      Oh, good point about Carl not even hearing the exam question. It’s not like he could get the question ahead of time or place a recording device in the room. What, he just comes in and stamps a random thought on the pages? And come to think of it, wasn’t he completely unable to even read “footprint language” (alphabet! It’s an alphabet, not a language) a short time ago?

                      Yeah, that scene with David…learning? Practicing? Whatever he was doing with the parasaurolophous, it was weird. I mean, yeah, James Gurney mentions dinosaurs making motions when speaking their own languages, but a) that didn’t sound anything like a dinosaur, b) those motions looked more like a bad attempt at mime than anything meaningful. Most of the time in the book, people speak human languages and dinosaurs speak dinosaur languages because that’s anatomically easier. They just learn to understand those languages they can’t speak.

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                    26. I missed it too. It’s nice to be back, doing what I should have been doing all along. 😄 Thanks for the high praise, I’m just waiting to see my offerings in comparison to yours since I know you’re gonna bring the scorn.
                      Hah! That reference is really really stupid, but I like you guessing about it so I won’t just say.
                      Personally I hope Marion understands a lot more than she lets on. She certainly plays back and forth with them – not leading them on or anything like that, but she’s a bit impish in constructive ways that benefit them. She’s the most likable character in my opinion. She does/says stupid things but still comes across as genuine and with good intentions. And no I’m not saying that cuz she’s cute. Also, I notice that thus far the brothers haven’t quarreled over her, one of the only smart things the writers have done. There’s no way to misconstrue her motivations as pitting them against each other for attention.
                      Good point about the footprint alphabet being unintelligible to Carl. I would have to logically conclude that Marion’s scheme worked enough to get Carl to learn it. But we’re being logical here, and the writers don’t seem to have that particular capacity.
                      Btw, I see you’ve reacquainted yourself with the show. That’s awesome, re: your blogpost is in the works. I’m also a little sad about it; I felt like I was sharing with you some personal discoveries. But oh well, it just means bigger and better things in the near future when you roll out your take. 🤣
                      Ok – I wrote a lot this time. Hope it’s not too much…

                      First off I gotta say, I adore the love triangle subplot that the writers cooked up for Dinotopia: the MEGASERIES! I’m on pins and needles waiting to see what happens next. Who will Marion choose? Oh, it just came to me! Maybe she’ll choose both! It’ll be polyamory in Dinotopia! When she wants knuckle-dragging, simian lout, there’s Carl. When she’s feeling simpering, mincing schoolboy, there’s David. I mean, how could anyone decide between those two?

                      So anyway, let’s get on with the show! We find Carl hastily packing bags in preparation for his escape. Little bro David approaches and inquires if Carl is excited for graduation. David has a smarmy, punchable grin as he says this. He chortles that he can’t wait to hear about Carl’s 5 minute answer. He’s so thoroughly unlikable. He’s unpleasant, childish, and comes across as very insecure.
                      We next see Marion addressing the graduating class in a regal hall. She singles out David as “unafraid” to speak his mind. Really? That’s precisely the opposite of how his character is portrayed on screen. Informed attribute, I guess. Then Carl (?!) is given special commendation!!! Wow, am I going to get my wish and have a surprisingly clever little development?! They read aloud Carl’s answer, which they call the best answer to the essay question they’ve ever read, and it’s the lyrics to Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody.

                      I’LL TAKE IT!!!!

                      *Jets out the door and runs full speed up to the top of a mountain in whipping rain. Screams into the howling storm: My God they did! They did a setup and payoff and it was sort of funny!!!*

                      So ya, I’m proud of you, Dinotopia. David is fuming and mumbling about how Carl cheated. Ug. Damn David, in this instance who cares? David is still graduating and was even the first student honored for his essay answer. It doesn’t effect him in any way. Yes it’s true that Carl misrepresented song lyrics as his own original thoughts, and yes I can understand someone feeling that that’s wrong. But since it doesn’t actually affect David he comes off as petty and sour. There’s something to be said about having a sense of humor, David. You want to gain friends and impress Marion? Work on being a good sport.
                      David confronts his brother after the ceremony.
                      “Have you ever done anything in your life where you haven’t cheated?” David spits. Carl calls him a sore loser. David fires back that he worked really hard on his answer. It’d be nice if Carl showed some maturity here and led the conversation somewhere constructive, but we both know that won’t happen. Further, I’m sure we both know they’re getting into yet again have a full-on fight.
                      “You’re taking this ‘Dinotopia thing’ way too seriously,” is Carl’s reply. He’s right, but I still wish he took a more diplomatic tact. Carl tries to just walk away but David pursues him. “What do you have against this place?” David asks, “I think you’re still blaming dad’s death on Dinotopia.” David, you’re a despicable worm. That’s so low I’m really rooting for Carl now, and I truly despise Carl. But you’re worse, David.
                      Carl, naturally, spins on his heels and stares David in the eyes. He tells his little brother to leave their dad out of the discussion. “At least you two had something in common,” David intones, “He didn’t have the time of day for me.” It does come off as heartfelt, so the actor playing David gets 1 point. “Wonder why?” snipes Carl. Good f*%# Lord will you just kill each other already?!?
                      They bicker about how awful McGruff dad was and David concludes that he’s free now and that he’s glad their dad is dead. How positively ghoulish. Ok, you can have a scene just like this but you have to make these characters likable FIRST. You have to instill in the audience some sympathy for them, so that viewers will be saddened by this development and hope that they’ll find a way to overcome and reunite as brothers.
                      Then Carl attacks David, which was obviously going to happen from the outset. The filmmakers and actors do an admirable job to convey a knockdown brawl with the clearly scant resources they had. There’s no way they had a fight choreographer for this filming. So the actors crash into the set dressing and when that isn’t feasible the cinematographer opts for shaky-cam. Now shaky-cam sucks, but in 2002 it was still acceptable, even in high budgeted fare. It’s terrible but I don’t blame them… this time.
                      Anyway the brothers toss each other off the balcony and plunge over the cliff!!!! 😳 Wow, Dinotopia got me there, I didn’t see that coming.
                      The camera pans down the cliff’s churning waterfall down to the basin below. You expect me to believe they survived that? There’s no way they weren’t buffeted senseless by those rocks and drowned. On the other hand, they did manage to swim to Dinotopia so they ~are~ superhuman.
                      We cut to Marion’s father saying good riddance. He’s right but I’d have EXPECTED him take a more diplomatic tact. Heh. Marion wants to form a search party. He reminds her that she’s scheduled to go somewhere tomorrow. She persists but he raises his hand in a gesture for her to be silent. She acquiesces immediately and stomps away, crestfallen. She’s met by stupid Zippo and says she’s going out looking for them herself. ??? Zippo says he’s going, too. Just like LotR: FotR.
                      We are then treated to some hazardous looking boulders abutting whitewater rapids when a human form burst up from below. Yay. Our heroes are alive, like of course they were. Now that we can rest easy, it’s time to call an end to this installment of Dinotopia!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    27. Yeah, I finally decided I better knuckle down and watch the show. I could probably have done the review with just my memories and what your commentary revived, but I’d hate for only you to have to suffer through it. I’m really glad it turned out to have only 3 episodes on Internet Archive, though. I thought I saw 13 at one point and it took me days to recover my resolve. 😧 And it’s fun seeing your take on things, like the Bohemian Rhapsody lyrics. Ah, that’s an image! 😂

                      You know, I wonder if plagiarism was ever a big deal in Dinotopia? The good one, I mean. I’m used to judging that sort of stuff through the eyes of stern modern academia, but in Windchaser, former pickpocket Hugh stops stealing in large part because no one cares or they just look at him in pity. And you did mention the Waterfall City people look like Elizabethans, whose playwrights were fairly free about borrowing ideas from one another. 🤔

                      Ugh, that fight scene…It did nobody any favors. And David taking that shot at McGruff Dad was even more troubling considering how he’d acted sad (in the bland way he has) when Carl accused him of forgetting about/being glad about the missing-dad thing earlier. Now it’s like, wait, was that just an act? Was he really secretly gleeful all this time?! Or is he just being a jerk because Marion said his essay was long-winded and Carl’s was better? Nah, the writers just needed a way to get them out of the city and I guess gravity was the only way despite Mr. Crabb’s deal to meet with Carl. 🙄 I actually seriously thought the fight was going to end with Carl knocking David unconscious and dragging him off to said meeting at one point. ‘Cause you’re right, no human being would survive diving straight into those waterfalls. But, TV magic.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    28. Thx. Not feeling it right now. Cranked this out earlier, though.

                      Daytime. Marion walks down the street with a picnic basket tucked in her arms, taking furtive glances about. She arrives at the aperture of a stately edifice. A puffin/parrot-like bird informs her, in perfect English, that she’s at the post office. Ug, more stupid Flintstones crap. He introduces himself as Messenger Bird 371. She apologizes before throwing the basket over him.
                      We cut to calm water. Carl is pulling his unconscious brother to the banks. They’re in a heavily wooded swamp. It appears Marion and Zippo are also in this swamp. They got there fast! They stop at a clearing and Marion releases 371. The first thing the bird starts squalling about is surcharges. Omg he has a tiny world war 1 leather doughboy hat with goggles on his head. Was this show intended for babies? She instructs him to fly along the river inquiring to anyone he should see if they’re Carl or David. How does she know the brothers were washed away by the river? Is it common knowledge that the bros fell into the rapids beneath the waterfall? That makes her father’s dispassionate response about their disappearance earlier all the more heartless.
                      Carl is leading a discombobulated David through a trail in the woods. It’s a very well tended path and clearly man made, as it’s too broad and flat to be an animal trail. Meanwhile, 371 is complaining to himself about his orders to follow the river. We get a shot of his flight path and he’s very far from the river. To quote an old meme: you had one job, moron.
                      Nightfall. Carl has somehow made a fire, and is reminiscing about Christmastime with David. The actor playing Carl gives some strange line delivery. He sounds agitated and aggressive but I can’t imagine that that was the emotion meant to be conveyed. Anyway he says “pissed” and I think he means “drunk” by that. Canadian production. He’s concerned for the wellbeing of his brother. This has been a touching (albeit poorly acted) bit of screen time for them. I wish there had been more stuff like this much earlier – I might’ve cared about their travails.
                      Some point later Carl wanders off to get a drink from a stagnant pool. Doofus, you don’t drink still water. You’re gonna die of dysentery. 371 plops down out of nowhere and asks if he’s Carl or David. He answers the former. Job finished, the bird instantly springs into the air and flys away. Some time later we see Marion and crew racing down the suspiciously manicured footpath. Carl hears them calling out for them. He shouts to them in return, and man, the actor can’t seem to bring himself to sound excited, grateful, relieved or anything like you’d expect. They reunite and check on David, who’s unconscious again. He’s in bad shape. Marion uses that dinosaur mind meld, and to a swirl of uplifting symphonic tones David shudders awake. I’m unmoved. The premise is too hokey for me to get into it. But whatever, I admit that to each their own. Zippo tells 371 to get help and sends him off.
                      Cut to Zippo and Carl exploring ruins. Zippo relates that this temple has been lost for centuries. Who’s been tending the path that leads right to it, then? They see those dino/Egyptian hieroglyphs again and Zippo babbles about King Ogthar (?) and speculates that this ruin is a passageway to his kingdom, the World Beneath. He then frets about carnivore guardians.
                      Carl suddenly teleports, evidently, because now he’s outside with Marion as they glimpse prehistoric-looking crocodiles beginning to swarm in the waters around them. Carl grabs a disoriented David while Marion rushes into the temple to gather Zippo. She yells at him that they have to leave, but he’s too infatuated with the reliefs on the wall. She orders him again to leave before fleeing outside herself. Why doesn’t she tell him that carnivores are coming? Because that would deflate the scene’s tension. Ug. Ya I’m so afraid Zippo’s gonna die. Carl and David make it across the rickety bridge. Marion attempts to cross, but a cg croc emerges from the water and blocks her escape. Carl shouts to her that she “can make it.” How, dolt? The creature is sitting on the bridge obstructing her only path to the other side!

                      Hey, that reminds me of a joke! I hope I didn’t tell you this one already, here goes: Carl and David were on opposite sides of the river. David shouts to Carl, “Hey! How do you get to the other side?” And Carl replies, “You ARE on the other side!” 😝

                      Anyway another croc pummels into the first one, and while they’re dazed Marion gets her chance to run past. Zippo follows but manages to tumble into the pool. Carl rushes to the water’s edge and pulls Zippo to safety. Now all together, they begin their trek back to civilization. We slam cut to the credits, and so we conclude the first of 3 episodes in Dinotopia: the MEGASERIES!!!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    29. Ugh, that messenger bird is definitely going on my rant list. The goggle hat, the surcharges…What?! Where are the cute dimorphodons from the books? 😥 Maybe they thought creatures that look like bat-demon-parrots wouldn’t be as cute as a fluffy bird, but this feels like getting Zippo instead of Bix all over again.

                      Carl seems to be the expert on how NOT to survive in the jungle. First he asks for steak in the middle of a torn-apart settlement with no refrigerator, and now he’s drinking from very sketchy water. I guess he did keep David mostly awake with his rambling talk, but then he just walks off and leaves him. C- on Survival First Aid, Carl.

                      Oh, yeah, that temple scene was so full of holes. Even weirder is Zippo making some comment earlier about how this is the farthest he’s ever been from Waterfall City. I mean, how far did they go? Though if Carl can teleport, maybe they did make it a fair distance. 😄 Oh, and now that I’ve gotten to see the hieroglyphics, I am totally miffed that they have the wrong saurian species for Ogthar. He looks like a hadrosaur or maybe even (Aaah, no!) Zippo, not a ceratopsian. 😒

                      Ha! I love your joke! 😂 Honestly, I could totally see this being dialogue that would happen if the series was extended.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    30. Rant list? I like where this is going. I’m glad I’m not in the movie, or I’d probably wind up on the list too.
                      Demon-parrots are cute? Please go on.
                      Lol I agree Carl and really nobody should be alive at this point, including Marion; remember that it was her idea to go after the “huge” pack of tyrannosaurs. You’re a very generous person giving him a c-. I guess I should have known that, putting up with commenters like me and my on again off again-ness. Lol.
                      I also agree that Zippo’s comment about how far from home he is is a strange one.
                      Oh and wait wait about those hieroglyphics, you mean to say the filmmakers got something wrong?!

                      We open to a picturesque vast canopy of trees. Our wandering heroes are quickly found by the search party, who have been hunting for them on brachiosaurs, oh excuse me, I mean “buses.” They’re brought to a quaint village of oddly proportioned farmhouses. Marion greets a woman who turns out to be her mother and they embrace. Zippo explains that Marion’s mother is the matriarch of this place, called “Vadaba” I think. Carl doesn’t know what “matriarch” means and is rendered slack jawed and dumbfounded. Marion’s mom approaches and Carl introduces himself. She informs him that she’s heard a lot about the boys and none of it was good. Ouch, who told her about them? One would have to think Marion, so Marion’s been talking mad shit about them…? Hahaha now that would be hilarious!! 🤣 Also, as the leader of a whole village one would expect some charm and delicacy from the matriarch. You know, leadership qualities. Instead we get, “I heard you stupids were stupider than the stupid guy who fell out of the stupid tree and hit every stupid branch on the way down.” Is this whole universe populated by clods? I hope that there’s a clod-off between her and Carl. Who will prove to be the biggest jerkiest idiot of all?
                      David is still sickly and unconscious.
                      Matriarch (henceforth Matty until they give her a name) and Carl sling a few barbs at one another. Maybe she’s just SO wise that she instantly knows that this is how to break through Carl’s emotional wall and reach him psychologically. Cuz she can see he’s a fuckup. Lol…
                      We get a tour of the place and it’s so boring. Also, I’m starting to dread that the incompetent writers set this up as a “do-over”, i.e. they’re going to repeat plot beats to pad out the show’s runtime. OMG I can’t abide that thought…
                      This is TOO dull!!! I’m skipping ahead again…

                      Liked by 1 person

                    31. Ah, the demon-parrots! The “demon” part is because dimorphodons are commonly shown with little spade-shaped things at the end of their long tails. In the books the little squawkers like to snuggle and have names like Bippa and Peebo. So yeah, kinda cute. But then I also really love bats. 😄

                      Oh, the hieroglyphics are just the tip of the iceberg. I had a pretty good laugh “translating” one of their signs in the so-called “footprint language.” 😁

                      I’m really going to have to look up how that farm’s name is supposed to be spelled. I heard it as “Dabba” and I was like, “Aha! Brach buses and Dabba-Doo farms–It is a Flintstones Dinotopia!” That would explain so much, honestly.

                      Ha, Matty! Good one. She is very serenely insulting, isn’t she? I wish the writers had been up to creating a real battle of barbs between her and Carl. But these are the people who decide David is “ill” after falling from a clifftop building into a waterfall instead of the obvious: he hit his head on a rock. That makes more sense with his symptoms and the fact that Carl did not catch this dreadful Waterfall Flu. Ah, well.

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                    32. I’ll try 1 last time as two parts..

                      *cold open on me pacing in circles*

                      I don’t understand what I’m doing! This dreck doesn’t deserve the minutest degree of mental engagement!

                      *pauses to contemplate inwardly, briefly looks to heaven, sighs, resumes pacing*

                      It’s such a waste of my precious time! Maybe if the plot was interesting or intelligent, or these characters where appealing! But everything is just garbage, sheer trash!

                      *turns directly to camera, expression grimly determined*

                      I hope you’re satisfied! I’m killing myself for nothing! I could be looking up new recipes to try, or continue arguing with my cousin about whether swordfish tastes good – it does- or I could finish reading the Wodehouse book I started. Yet here I am, because I’m a stupid asshole.

                      We start with Matty looking for Carl. She’s informed that he may be in the barn. We cut to the interior of the cleanest looking “barn” I’ve ever seen. Carl and Zippo are playing table tennis and Matty scolds the talking dinosaur for such self-indulgence. She definitely gives off a Narnian White Witch vibe. Ah good, just what this story needs, another low energy character to bog everything down. Zippo panics at Matty’s harsh criticism and reveals that he’s writing a thesis on Carl. This “upsets” Carl, though he announces his feelings with robotic coldness. He calls Matty Rosemary so I guess that’s her name then.
                      We cut to agrarian splendor and I’m totally unfazed. I need a compelling story to go along with these visuals; without a good story, everything else is pointless.
                      We witness Carl chucking hay bails in the hot sun. This demonstrates that Rosy’s influence is taking effect.
                      We find David recouping from his illness, tended to by Zippo. Zippo mentions that Carl and Marion have become close while David was convalescing. This agitates David. Yay, the romantic subplot rears it’s ugly, stupid, mutant head! He proclaims that Carl has no female friends. Uh, what? Next scene features David peering out a window with a spyglass. Oh no David, you’re not going to spy on Marion/Carl are you? It’s really creepy, actually it’s cleared “creepy” and landed in “full on psycho” territory.
                      Yep, his gaze fixes on Marion and Carl strolling down a dusty lane. Despite the vast distance between David and the pair, their dialogue is still audible, which implies that he can hear it himself. That makes no sense as telescopes don’t work like that. It reminds me of another atrocious movie, Samurai Cop: there’s a scene where the titular samurai/cop is in a car chase while radioing another officer flying overhead in a helicopter. At the end of the scene samurai cop has left his squad car yet still speaks to the woman in the helicopter (!) and they can hear and reply to one another just fine! 😜

                      Liked by 1 person

                    33. Yes, I often feel sorry that I encouraged you to rewatch this drivel. The main reason it’s taking me so long to write my review is that I keep having to take mental health breaks. 😓 And yeah, you should definitely read that Wodehouse book! His writing will be a great help healing from this mini-series exposure. Now there’s an idea. I’ll pull out my copy of Something Fresh once I’m done with the review! 😄

                      It kind of creeps me out how Rosemary is so smiley but also so anti-fun. Like, what exactly is she expecting Carl and Zippo to be working on so hard in that spotless barn?

                      Wow, I didn’t even think of the weirdness of David apparently hearing Carl and Marion from such a distance. This show is so bad for my brain. 😣

                      Liked by 1 person

                    34. Once again having trouble posting so I’ll break it up in two sections.

                      Don’t cry for me, I’m already dead. Lol no jk I’m really into this, you still get a kick out of it? I sorta wonder if it’s getting fatiguing.
                      Also I forgot to ask in the previous comment, what does goat yogurt taste like, what compelled you to try it? Beat my cousin in the swordfish row, btw, although I’m sure she’d say I didn’t. 🙄
                      Rosy is very creepy ~and yet~ she’s starting to grow on me. She’s certainly provided me with some great laughs so far.
                      “This show is so bad for my brain.”
                      So many jokes… I can’t decide which one!!!

                      Well damn. The faucet in the kitchen sink is leaking and getting water all over the bottom cabinets and floor. Tried some quick fixes but the inside is stripped and needs to be replaced. But instead of a run to the hardware store, I’ll procrastinate a little bit with some Dinotopia!

                      Nighttime. Carl sits up in bed in a darkened chamber. He attempts to sneak away when he hears his brother’s voice ask where he’s going. “Nowhere,” Carl replies suspiciously. Curiosity aroused, David clambers to his feet while Carl opens a window and, taking a rope in hand, swings like Tarzan (!) to the building on the opposite side of the street. Uhh… what? Isn’t there a simpler way to cross the street? Is this going to be a plot point later in the series…? Why did the filmmakers have a scene like this?
                      He comes crashing to his hands and knees and discovers himself in some kind of women’s dormitory. He seems vaguely surprised. Wait so this wasn’t premeditated? How would he know the rope could hold his weight, or that it would be long enough for him to reach the other building?

                      Liked by 1 person

                    35. I still think it’s fun! I hope it won’t be a damper that I just (semi-accidentally) posted the first part of my review. It’s always nice to see what you have to say, especially since you’re able to go into details I will sadly have to miss.

                      Uh, it’s been a while since I had goat yogurt, but I recall it was pretty good. A slightly musky undertone compared to cow yogurt, maybe. I’m not sure why I tried it. Just curious, I guess. I have not tried swordfish, though.

                      Oh, that sounds like a bad leak! I hope it’s not too hard to repair. I probably have several things I should go investigate or fix too. 😅

                      Ok, I can explain where the filmmakers got that scene. It’s a bad cut-and-paste of the scene where Will terrorizes a bunch of girls in the night at the urging of other boys. This was in Treetown, where everyone slept in basket-like pods that were connected by rope bridges or the occasional swinging rope. It makes no sense in the earth-bound Dabba-whatsit farm.

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                    36. “I hope it won’t be a damper that I just (semi-accidentally) posted the first part of my review.”
                      No not a chance, I was looking forward to your output, lol it’s like a kid looking forward to Christmas.

                      “It’s always nice to see what you have to say”
                      Lol there’re ppl who’d disagree 🤣.

                      No worries, all fixed, just had to completely replace that faucet. Hope your maintenance projects are easy fixes too!

                      “I can explain”
                      Oh ok well it’s sorta heartening that they actually DID do some background research. In the case of the girls dorm, they didn’t pull it off.

                      Also forgot to mention my interest in your reading Journey to the West. Very cool! I “read” it once upon a time but I was mostly lost. I figure you’ll have a better head for it lol! Have you tackled/plan to tackle Romance of the Three Kingdoms?

                      Liked by 1 person

                    37. “looking forward” Oh, good! Now I’m really revved up to post Take 2! Just gotta do some revision and decide how much I can cram in there…

                      There are a ton of mini-series scenes that I can trace to the original books, but they’re distorted and sewn together like a tottering Frankenstein monster. Marion calming the Ankylosaurus? Vaguely resembles Sylvia soothing a wounded Bix after Arthur threw a rock at her. The tyrannosaur attack in the Rainy Basin with swooping Skybax? Probably modeled on the attack in World Beneath after Will accidentally intrudes on a temple that is actually guarded by tyrannosaurs. And so on and so on.

                      All those derivative locations and scenes are why the journey Carl and David take makes no sense when you consult the map in Gurney’s books. The only way they would have gone through the Rainy Basin to Waterfall City (without crossing the Forbidden Mountains) would be if they started in Treetown. But Dabba-Doo is Treetown mixed the the Hatchery. Both of those are upriver of Waterfall City, so how did they end up…😵

                      No plans for Romance of the Three Kingdoms yet, though I’m getting increasingly curious about Investiture of the Gods. I mainly wanted to learn more about the awesome Monkey King since his festival is coming up! 🐵

                      Liked by 1 person

                    38. “Oh, good!” Awesome, I know you’re gonna kill it! 😈 What else can I do to pump you up for this?

                      “decide how much I can cram in there…” Cram it ALL in! I’ll be reading every word lol, remember your not doing Dinotopia due service in your review if you don’t feel like you’re gonna die. Ha! Na in all honesty while I’m exasperated most of the time watching this, I do also have a good time laughing at the schlock on screen, and of course then sharing it with you here. 😂

                      “Frankenstein” That’s fantastic, your insights will be a very fresh take.

                      Monkey King! Lol, and you’re gonna have a lot of media to work with, too! If you want some input on international folktales present in Journey to the West I’d be glad to help.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    39. I’d say you’re doing plenty just with the conversations! It keeps me thinking about how I can turn my long-held resentment of the show into something fun. Admittedly, Take 2 is going to have some more serious moments, but I want to make sure I don’t drop the humor entirely.

                      “Cram it ALL in!” I’ll do what I can! 😂

                      Ha, I think the Monkey King is enough of a handful all by himself right now! I’m probably going to have to re-read the set so that I can focus on the internal alchemy bits later. That stuff is awesome!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    40. The new part 2

                      “Hi girls,” he mewls in a tone reminiscent of Garfield the cat. He’s met with wonder, faint smiles, and a smattering of girlish giggles. Ha, ok, I doubt that that’s how it would go down if a stranger broke into a women’s dorm in real life, no matter how handsome he is.
                      Carl finds the object of his affection, namely one Marion Dinotopoulos, and asks her out. Wow, how dashing. David doesn’t stand a f@$”!&% chance lololol! Also, what do you think of my conception of her surname? She’s Greek, lol. Anyway Marion has stars in her eyes and totally agrees. I’m proud of you Carl for endangering yourself to impress a woman. It’s the most realistic thing in this whole miniseries!
                      We cut to our duo having a romantic moonlit swim. Carl you devil, you! Although I see that this is a pond or some other sort of natural body of water, leaving me wondering about leeches and mosquitoes. But whatever. Then to a swell of orchestral accompaniment Carl and Marion kiss! Yay I love this show!
                      We move on to a crowded feasting hall. Marion and Carl take their seats abreast David and Rosy. Rosy reveals that she’s been informed of their nighttime dalliance. I’m gonna jump to conclusions and blame David for this. David you creep! He indeed takes this opportunity to tattle on his brother’s defiant nature and hilariously Rosy tells him to shut up. 😆 She turns her attention back to the lovebirds and inquires why Carl isn’t acclimating to Dinotopian culture or something, blah blah. He remarks that he doesn’t want to stay in Dinotopia and never will. He says this right in front of Marion, yet she doesn’t react to Carl the Jerky Lothario’s statement at all. You’d think that she would, after their tryst and all, but as Bertie Wooster would say, “Ah, woman!”
                      Rosy counters that Carl is here to stay and she’ll make him like it… so there! 😂 This show is really starting to hit its unintentionally comedic stride. So the scene concludes and I better end here too. Today we learned that reckless stunts always wins the girl, unless you get yourself killed of course. Also, nobody likes a backstabbing tattler. See you next time for Dinotopia!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    41. Ha, Dinotopoulos! Good one. 😆 I actually had to think about whether that was her official name or not. And yeah, I think the screaming Will got would be more realistic. Not to mention we now have a whole room of potential sources for Rosemary’s information. Sigh, Carl is terrible at sneaking. 🙄

                      Yeah, Rosemary’s in a mood in that scene. Good point that Marion doesn’t react to Carl’s declaration that he’s leaving. Maybe she just thinks of it as something he says at this point and not something to take seriously. Or maybe she’s too busy trying to figure out what those giant red blocks are on the table nearby. What are those things?!

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                    42. Good point that any one of those girls could have snitched.

                      Giant red blocks?! I totally missed them, lol!
                      Good morning, let’s rise and shine with a nice hot cup of Dinotopia!

                      Oh, the previous scene wasn’t over yet. So Carl tries to leave, but the horrible racket from the dinosaurs seems to send him into a hypnotic state and he keels over to the ground. We then get the sense that Carl partakes in an out-of-body experience.
                      We next see the brothers sitting outside as the sun sets. They bond over how invigorating their trance has been. David professes his inability to describe the experience he felt. How convenient for the inept writers.
                      We watch a graduation ceremony. Borg Queen is assigning each graduate an official occupation. She announces that Carl will stay at Dabba Doo Farms and work in the hatchery. This assignment is evidently ironclad, resistance to one’s assignment is, I guess, futile. Heh heh, see what I did there? David will be a skybax rider in Canyon City, and resistance is futile. Marion will not be assigned a “habitat”, which I suppose is their euphemism for “occupation”. Oh ya and RESISTANCE IS FUTILE. (I just imagine Rosy ending with that phrase after every graduate is doled a job, heh.) Anyway Marion appears puzzled at the news, and a smattering of hushed whispers in the crowd confirms that this development is very unorthodox.
                      Marion confronts her mother afterwards, and is told she must go to Canyon City with David on a special mission. Next Marion and David are wishing Carl goodbye. Carl makes a remark questioning David’s courage. I understand that he’s jealous, what with Marion and his recent history together, but just shut up Carl. He’s had ZERO character arch so far. Anyway she promises to look after David, but David retorts that “they’ll look after each other”. He then throws his arm around Marion’s shoulder and rather forcibly wheels her around to leave. David is a Stephen King villain. Also, while Marion shoots Carl a maudlin expression as she departs, she doesn’t really protest David’s dickhead move. I mean, after the skinny dipping/make-out scene I thought Marion and Carl were a full fledged couple. Then again, Carl’s very next order of business was to swear he’s getting off the island one way or another, so who knows. 🤷‍♂️
                      The pair mount some parasaurolophuses and scamper over the desert.

                      Sorry to cut it short but I gotta be off! See you next time!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    43. Haha, yes, it really does seem like “resistance is futile!” 😄 That’s one of the things that really bugs me about the mini-series, the lack of choice. It’s like there’s some hidden checklist that everyone on Dinotopia is quietly consulting as they shove Carl and David along. Registration, check. Footprint stamp exam, check. Bizarre dino-stomp meditation, check. And I can’t help wondering where Rosemary’s assignments come from. Carl, David, and even Marion all look confused and doubtful, so I’m guessing it wasn’t based on visions or anything.

                      “ZERO character arch so far” I know, right? Other than fighting with Carl and glaring whenever he’s with Marion, his major accomplishments so far have been wearing a weird hat while trying to talk to a parasaurolophus and getting sick after falling down a waterfall. Neither really resulted in much development.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    44. Well I’m back again to darken the world with more of my novelization of Dinotopia: The Megaseries.
                      “Good gravy”. Not to be a jerk but I find it funny that you use the phrase “good gravy”. “Cook-off. Nah…” That’s no fun, where’s your competitive spirit? I’ll ask you again, later. Where’d the cauliflower come from? “you’re doing plenty” Well it’s cool I’m doing something right, lol. “crazy dog” I’m sure your dog was much sharper.
                      It’s so dull at work these days, I’m finding myself furiously texting to stave off the boredom. My friend said that she’s currently reading Alice Quinn romance novels. My reaction of course was lol fantastic! I asked if she’s ever heard of Dinotopia – she hasn’t. Hahaha. I found that exchange entertaining.
                      The pair are plodding along the arid waste. David is giving commands in “dinosaur” language to his prehistoric mount, but helpfully he switches back and forth from “Dino” to English for the audience’s edification. Contextually it’s pointless because the dinosaur presumably doesn’t understand English, hence the need to speak “Dino”. Why didn’t the production ppl just use subtitles, or even bother with anything at all? His line is composed of two words. It’s like bad movies that have ESL characters who routinely swap English words for their native lingo, based on the handful of words the scriptwriter knows. Example: an Hispanic cop will turn to his partner and say, “We have to radio cabeza-quarters, ándale!”

                      Liked by 1 person

                    45. “where’s your competitive spirit?” I let the cats play with it and now it’s probably stuck under the furniture somewhere. 😁

                      Oh, the cauliflower was just leftovers. I throw whatever on nachos to see how it tastes.

                      Yeah, really, why not use subtitles? It’s a lot less awkward than having everyone needlessly repeat things. And then people could have fun determining whether the subtitles are correct. 😄

                      Liked by 1 person

                    46. The third part 2-
                      Marion is amused by David’s flailing attempts, while he whines that if Carl were here he’d be able to master this creature. Marion rejoinders that Rosy knows David will succeed, and that she has faith in him, too.
                      We cut to the pair on foot, hiking to the precipice of a cliff. David’s whining some more. Can someone gag this guy? I don’t know how Marion can stand to be around this perpetual crybaby. Maybe she plans to throw him over the side?
                      “It’s like a chronic nightmare within a very bad dream,” he grouses. Wow, that’s deep, and not at all nonsensical. It’s like middle school poetry you’d scrawl in a black-paper notebook, in gel pen. It’s like a chronic stupidity within a very bad inadequacy. Oh, maybe by “chronic” he’s referring to pot, I remember that the cool kids called it “chronic” back when this show was filmed.
                      So ya Marion promises to hold David’s hand if he’ll be a good little boy and come along with mommy. This guy is in serious need of positive character development. From their vantage on the cliff they view the “breathtaking wonder” of an animation of Canyon City. She points out the river below, and David refuses to look, betraying his fear of heights. Ok Davey, I totally get irrational phobias, I myself can’t stand spiders; but at a certain point (in adolescence) you realize that you have to face your fears. I doubt I’ll ever actually stop hating spiders, but I sucked it up and these days I can get rid of marauding ones and live peaceably with the ones I find outside. Btw, I forgot to say thx for not posting a bunch of spider pics after I admitted how much I hate them. Lol.
                      Also wait a sec, it suddenly dawned on me that David’s phobia makes no sense. He’s looked down from great heights without fuss several times already, so what’s up now?
                      After some embarrassing protests he finally summons the courage to peep over the guard rail. Marion informs him that it’s a 6 thousand feet plunge, and he scoffs that nothing is 6 thousand feet. Huh? Mount Everest is nearly 9000 feet. Wow I take issue with every single thing this guy says and does. At this rate I’ll die of exhaustion (or laughter) before I finish this review. Lol! Oh no, it’s happening! Ack! *dies*

                      Liked by 1 person

                    47. A lot of what David says makes no sense. Hence the need for that gag.

                      “chronic” Ha! Now we know what Rosemary was giving those teens. 😂

                      Ok, glad I didn’t add any spider pictures, then! I know spiders are a pretty strong and widely held fear. And honestly, a fairly rational one if you think about it.

                      Yeah, you’d think flying on a private airplane and living in Waterfall City would both be kind of tough for someone with a strong fear of heights. I think he did act a little nervous when Marion took him up to meet the prime sunstone, but that was it. If it weren’t for the Waterfall City stuff, I’d say this was actual character development stemming from plane crash trauma, but…nope, they can’t even give him that.

                      Yeah, another bizarre thing for David to–Oh, no! Marion, bring Tiege back with your completely unexplained and sporadic psychic powers!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    48. Lol I’M ALIVE!!! I excited seeing you getting involved in the fantasy of it all!
                      So hey, I’m currently on a road trip for an early Halloween bash. May be a little while before I return to Dinotopia.

                      David and Marion enter a very fake film set of a cliff ledge. A small gathering is also present. The pair greet the others with a password or something and are straightaway given their itinerary. David will be taken to flight academy and Marion will head out to meet Canyon City’s city council. David frets like a child, “I’m going to see you again soon, right?” The actor’s delivery really does sound like a kid seeking comfort from his mother. Marion smiles maternally and assures him he will. They are then led apart. The young blonde woman guiding David mentions her name is Denison, btw, which is a reference to the books. She also says that the password he gave earlier was incorrect. Ugh. We’re told time and again that David is an intelligent and studious young man, yet at every opportunity this is undermined by the filmmakers. What were they thinking?!?
                      David finds the barracks where he will be quartered. I like the matte painting background, I don’t like the cheap looking design and construction of the sleeping quarters. She provides him his jumpsuit and warns never to be caught out of uniform. Um, even when bathing?
                      We cut to Carl stomping down a country lane. He stares hesitantly at little wagons containing dinosaur eggs bordering the road. He comes to a thatched cottage with an abutting tower. It resembles a lighthouse furnished with a sunstone. Carl appears a little intimidated at the sight. He enters and the interior does not match the rustic exterior at all. A girl meets him in the foyer. She tells him to be quiet as a triceratops has just given birth. Huh, she means laid eggs, right? Dinosaurs didn’t have live births, knuckleheads. She leads him to a chamber housing dozens of eggs placed in cubbyholes. They listen in to the hatchlings inside the eggs; the sound foleyed in is of chattering monkeys. The girl picks out the egg that Carl is responsible for, instructing him that it is his saurian life partner. Yikes!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    49. Cool! Have fun road tripping and bashing!

                      Ugh, their Canyon City is so boring. It’s like tents and blinds on a cliff instead of cool rooms and passages carved into the rock. Which would be much safer. You’d think a good wind could knock most of this stuff off.

                      “even when bathing?” 🤣😆🤣 Oh, illogical filmmakers! Though I suppose David probably hopes no one will be catching him while he’s bathing.

                      “just given birth.” Yeah, I am not impressed with this kid’s knowledge of saurian biology. You’d really think she’d know how dinosaurs reproduce if she lives at a hatchery.


                    50. Part 4 # 2

                      Back to David. He’s standing at attention in a regimented file. The skybax rider from the tyrannosaurus episode is their drill instructor. It’s very militaristic, and not what I’d imagine Dinotopian flight school would be like in the slightest. After some ballyhoo the instructor tells them that pteranodons are different from skybax bc it’s been impossible to communicate with pteranodons. Plot point!!! Also, is this the sort of introductory information one would expect skybax riders-in-training would need? No, it’s not; it’s an obvious plot point very clumsily shoehorned here purely for the audience’s edification AGAIN. Guys, do a better job with the exposition, please! You could have the instructor give the class a useful introductory speech as David glimpses a pteranodon. He can whisper to the cadet next to him, “what’s that?” The cadet can respond, “a pteranodon, but don’t worry about them. They’re not used in the fleet bc no one has ever been able to communicate with them.” There you go. There’s nothing else worthwhile in the rest of the scene.
                      We cut AGAIN to Carl as he wanders around some building. He’s lugging the egg around with him. Rosy the Borg Queen is nonplussed at this. “Get her back to the incubation room at once!” she insists. Carl isn’t having it, though. He refuses to participate in that “saurian life partner” nonsense. She tries to persuade him, asking him what he felt when “he communed with the brachiosaurus?” “I don’t know,” he replies. 🤣! Rosy starts throwing out ideas of how it might have felt to him in the hope that something will stick. He appears vaguely moved… maybe? Something stirs within him… perhaps? She asks him again to put the her (the egg) back. He asks Rosy why she calls the unhatched dino a “her”. She says that she “just knows things”. Blech! As you point out, that’s a very disappointing cop out. Anyway, end scene.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    51. I really hate how they made the Skybax riders all militaristic. They even renamed them “Sky Corps” and have Oonu saying “About-face.” 😣 Really hard to imagine Oolu–who looks kind of like Wolverine and I believe leaps off his Skybax to introduce himself–is supposed to be this guy’s grandfather.

                      That would have been a much better way to get the pteranodon information in there! Sigh, if only they’d made a decent effort in scripting/storytelling. 😔

                      You know, it seems like someone should be watching the eggs to make sure newbies don’t carry them off. This can’t be the first time this has happened. Or maybe they rely on Rosemary “knowing things” as their security system. 😝


                    52. Ok finally works, here’s part 2

                      We get an over-the-shoulder shot of Rosy quietly stalking up to David. They converse and she lavishes praise on his “intellect”. If you say so… Anyway it’s funny because Rosy positions herself so close to the young man in a manner approximating warmth that it looks like she’s coming onto him. Or at least being a little innocently flirty. Lol! I have to say, that’s what I’d be wondering if I were in David’s shoes. 😱 😆 GOOD GOD let this be an actual plot development!!! Please please please!!!
                      Plus I just realized something!!! The actress playing Rosemary really looked familiar and it just popped into my mindless head why! She played the Borg Queen in Star Trek: First Contact, and the best part is that I’ve never even seen that movie!!! And I’m SHOUTING like crazy these past several sentences!!! It’s a madhouse!!!
                      David then commences to bitching about his brother. Ugh. Bruh, you’re hopeless. Rosy on the other hand seems amused by his pathetic performance. Oh man it’s a done deal, Rosy’s totally horning in on her daughter’s action. This is the best turn of events ever. They talk a little longer and then the scene just sort of ends.
                      Anyway that’s it for this episode. Ya, there isn’t a chance in hell that Rosy will attempt to seduce David, and Carl will be friends with Zippo again by their next scene together, but it was hilarious being able to entertain these flights of fancy. I gotta go make a list about all the reasons why swordfish is great, then maybe fall asleep to Jeeves and Wooster; you enjoy cooking? What’s your favorite food? Read anything good lately? Take care!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    53. Whaaa?! Rosy’s the Borg Queen?! 🤯 Oh, that makes total sense. Now I’m picturing David in Data’s place in that scene where she gets really seductive and–Gah! Gotta think of something else! 😣

                      What cracks me up about her talking about David being “intelligent” is that he’s been unconscious since he arrived at the Dabba-Farm-Thing. I guess that’s her intellectual ideal or something. 🤭

                      Eh, I sometimes cook, but I’m not super into it. Mostly I do weird experiments like bean and cheese pot stickers. 😁 And I’m reading Journey to the West right now, which is a blast!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    54. Hah! 😂😆🤣 Love your reimagined borg Queen mate scene, even despite the brain damage it causes through stree. Did you ever read Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius? Everything is blending together and what’s real is meaningless!

                      Nice catch about how David’s been unconscious this whole time. If only the writers had been as diligent.

                      Sorta Mexican inspired pot stickers? Sounds interesting, and cool that you experiment! Do you make your own pot sticker wrappers or get them pre-made? My only foray into pot stickers were pre-made, lol.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    55. Shhh 🤫, I’m at work but decided to slack off. We must be quiet or I’ll get nabbed 🤫.
                      *everything henceforth to be read as a whisper:

                      We open to an establishing shot of an authoritative hall. The camera is top down wide, so I can’t make out the speaker at the podium, but the voice sounds like Marion’s father. So we’re back in Waterfall City I guess. The speaker addresses Zippo concerning his latest research. The dinosaur rises to deliver his findings to the gallery. He nervously blathers about his analysis of the hieroglyphs he found at the swamp temple. He reveals his belief that the temple is the lost temple of Caro and there is an audible ripple of surprise from the audience. That’s understandable, I’m a fiend for Caro syrup myself *rimshot*. Heh. Zippo suggests that these ruins are an entrance to the World Beneath. He’s interrupted by a burping ankylosaurus, and Marion’s father translates (needlessly in the context of the scene but required for the viewers at home) that the dinosaur is concerned about disturbing the sacred World Beneath. Zippo starts panicking at this incredibly minor heckling. Btw Zippo is the best character because he’s so manly. Meanwhile the commotion in the gallery grows to a din. It is apparently verboten for top-dwellers to trespass into the World Beneath.
                      Marion’s dad unilaterally decrees a total suspension of any further expeditions into the swamp ruins. Does he have fiat powers to do that? He himself is just the elected mayor, wouldn’t there be a legislative process by a governmental body requisite to ratify such a prohibition?
                      We then view Crabb in the assembly, observing with interest.
                      We cut to Rosy giving a speech before a scattered group of people seated on the floor. Sporadic placing of candles give the chamber “atmosphere”. She’s preparing them for dino-vision or something. I recall the books had artistic representations of what dinosaur sight looked like, but I admit I don’t remember anything about mystic trances.
                      Everyone bows their heads to the floor. Rosy starts blabbing again but the sound mix here is distractingly bad; her “sagacious” speech gets drowned out by loud “dinosaur” stomps and roars. The sounds are so intrusive that I thought there was a fight going on off camera. Then her speech culminates with a plea to “listen”. Ah! So this was intentional sound design and not just a sloppy mess? Coulda fooled me! I appreciate that they tried to do something here but I think they failed: what’s more they should have realized that and chucked it.
                      Btw, I suspect that these two scenes are juxtaposed as a device for the viewer to compare an underlying theme of the miniseries: the hidebound mildew of the bureaucratic, civilized classes exemplified by Waterfall City vs the spiritually aware, salt of the earth folk in touch with nature from Dabba Doo Farms. Perhaps this subtextual resonance will develop into an actual plot point or even a conflict. I also suspect I’m reading too much into this.
                      Anyway Carl makes a half hearted attempt before informing Rosy that he can’t take these types of mystical rituals seriously and is headed for bed. We get a shot of outside and it’s broad daylight. He’s going to sleep in the middle of the afternoon? Rosy’s disappointed. I think I won’t push my luck and end now.
                      Today we learned that if you enjoy any kind of intellectual pursuit then you must also be a tiny weakling like Zippo. Also if you’re a tough guy like Carl you must to find spirituality laughable. Take care out there in Dinotopia-land!

                      Liked by 1 person

                    56. Ha, I thought “Caro” sounded familiar! 😄 And oh, the burping dinosaurs. Clearly an attempt to keep people from noticing that they spent no time constructing a meaningful language by using guttural tones. I was trying to figure out which Star Wars alien they sounded like. Hmmm.

                      You know, it just occurred to me, it seems like all those emotions Carl and David aren’t showing got transferred to Zippo. Dude is hyper!

                      Oh, Rosemary and the stomping dinosaurs. Yeah, that really isn’t the best meditation soundtrack. More evidence, in my mind, that they used some sort of drug on the teens. Funny thing is I thought I remembered somewhat soothing music under the thumps, but I didn’t hear it this time.

                      It’s entirely possible they did try to do something artistic and meaningful with the scene contrast. I’m sure they didn’t go into this project with the mission statement, “Let’s totally trash Dinotopia and make something truly horrible!” But since the dynamic they set up is super formulaic, I’m not giving them much credit for it.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    57. “burping dinosaur” they love to recycle animations and sounds. I’ve got a feeling we’re not through with burpy the dinosaur.

                      “Dude is hyper!” Lol that’s funny but you’re overly kind calling him that. When I was a child I was “hyper”, Zippo is a neurotic spaz. He’s like a cartoon of a caricature of Woody Allen. Ug, Woody Allen, now I loath Zippo even more.

                      “which Star Wars alien” Lol ha from what I remember SW aliens had very unique. Like the Ewoks, remember Ewoks?

                      Yes drugs to inhibit rational thinking, I believe you’re onto something!

                      “Possible” Looking briefly into the history of this film company it appears they were lurching from success to success in tv adaptations of books. I just imagine that while they were in production on this they were totally full of themselves.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    58. “Zippo is a neurotic spaz” True, very true. He reminds me of a crazy dog I once had, except I liked the dog more.

                      “Ewoks” Oh, not those Star Wars aliens! I was thinking of one of those slug-like things that burp in the background.

                      Liked by 1 person

  2. Congrats! And thanks so much for the nomination — looking forward to answering your questions soon!!! Ahhh, I adore the kitsune, and I appreciate your admiration for the moral grey area. I relate to becoming a bit vicious when I feel a loved one is under attack. It also feels more relatable to connect to a mythical power that also has a “human” quality, such as not always being good but not always being bad. Alongside, I like your point about jealousy — when someone tries to make me jealous, it does the opposite and turns me off. It’s game-playing, hurtful, and disrespectful. I sadly have a lot of jealousy issues, but I have learned to handle it in a much more mature way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! 😊

      Yes, that’s what I love about kitsune! They seem more relatable and “human” despite being only tourists to the human experience. Add the cool powers to that and they’re such great imagination material!

      Kudos to you for working with jealousy. It’s not an easy emotion to handle, but I think as long as it’s handled with awareness, it doesn’t have to be damaging. 💖

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I have to say i don’t know HOW i didn’t see this until now!!!! I’m so sorry I’ve been living under a busy rock 😫

    But I’m so glad to see you do this!! I love your answers!! Also I do love the kitsune as well everything that has it I love (except maybe that season of Teen Wolf) lol

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, I’ve done that plenty of times myself! No worries! 😄 And thank you again!

      There were kitsune in Teen Wolf? Now I’m curious. But then again, maybe I should let that one alone. It can make me so mad when something I love is done badly! 😅

      Liked by 1 person

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