Episode five of the series is another dinosaur runaround, this time written by Norman Spinrad, the author of Bug Jack Barron. Unlike the previous two writers, Spinrad did not come directly to this show via the Star Trek cartoon, but he was probably known to story editor David Gerrold via the original program in the sixties. Both men had written episodes for that show’s second season.
The highlight of this episode is seeing Grumpy and Big Alice meeting each other. It’s probably not the first time, but then again, we don’t know how long a memory dinosaurs had. As a kid, I completely loved the way that the tyrannosaurus and the allosaurus each had its own territory with the big crevasse separating the two. As children, we would often get chased around by one beast in one part of the backyard and the other elsewhere. The bit where Will, Holly, and Cha-Ka are stranded on a ledge between them was one we reenacted constantly. And I also love how the animators gave the dinosaurs such different and identifiable body language. Big Alice is quicker to lower her head as though she wants to charge, and Grumpy’s back is less flexible.
Daniel was in heaven, not scared at all, but almost hopping with excitement as the tyrannosaur chased everybody around. I was slightly disappointed that there’s a small continuity blip: the Marshalls evidently learned the names of the two older Pakuni, Ta and Sa, between episodes instead of onscreen, and the audience is never actually formally introduced to them, but of course the target audience didn’t mind at all. He’s getting ready for bed right now, reminding his mother “I love dinosaurs SO MUCH!”