Hey! If you missed the first two installments of the Dinosaur Killcount Showdown, you can find ’em right here: Jurassic Park (won by the tyrannosaurus) and The Lost World: Jurassic Park (which saw the velociraptor claim victory).
The Scene: Isla Sorna, Costa Rica. We once again travel to the infamous InGen Site B, now a protected wildlife preserve administered by the Costa Rican government.
The Participants: A bunch of awesome dinosaurs and a few idiot humans who are seemingly impervious to destruction.
The Question: Which dinosaur from Jurassic Park III is truly the most effective prehistoric killing machine?
The Methodology: Each encounter (defined as “an edible foe being easily within reach”) will be scored as either a “KILL” or a “MISS” by our panel of judges. Half-points may be awarded for effort or merit, where applicable. Final scores for each prehistoric creature will be tabulated in a manner similar to a batting average in baseball, with additional adjudicator commentary as required.
The mighty tyrannosaurus is always a threat to take home the title, and make no mistake, the former champ is looking to get back to the top of the mountain after a somewhat disappointing outing in the previous tournament.
Its brute strength has worked to its advantage in the past, and you certainly can’t ignore its massive serrated teeth and powerful crushing jaws. But will those weapons be enough to fend off a whole new batch of challengers in what is sure to be a highly competitive event?
- MISS — Dr. Grant as he interrupts the T-Rex’s dinner. To be fair, the tyrannosaurus probably wasn’t expecting to be pestered in the middle of a big meal, but that doesn’t excuse the fact that it simply let Grant and the others run away instead of doing what anybody would do when they’re bothered during dinner — chewing them out (in this case, literally). 0 for 1.
- MISS — The spinosaurus. Enraged at the intruder coming into its territory, the T-Rex attacks the spinosaurus and nearly emerges victorious. Its powerful jaws were wrapped around the invader’s scrawny neck, but it appears that age has finally caught up to the T-Rex, as it was unable to finish the job. Has the former champ lost its edge, its fighting spirit? 0 for 2.
FINAL TALLY: 0 for 2 (0.000 killing average).
Truly a sad fall from grace for the former king of all dinosaurs. With no kills to its name, the tyrannosaurus fared no better than many of the lame herbivores it once feasted on. Could retirement be in the cards for Big Rex?
The defending champ from The Lost World, the velociraptor is back and it’s looking to register a much more decisive victory than last time, which saw it go to a tie-breaker against the diminutive compsognathus. Indeed, the raptor is determined to run away with this competition and prove to all the naysayers that last year’s title was not a fluke.
Everybody knows about its outstanding agility and razor sharp claws, but our panel of experts are saying that this edition of the raptor is smarter and more cunning than ever before. Can brains prevail over brawn once again?
- MISS — Amanda in the laboratory. Perhaps wanting to demonstrate its intellect to the rest of the field, the raptor tries to play mindgames with the woman, “hiding” in plain sight by pretending to be a test tube speciment. Clever? Yes. Practical? No. I can understand wanting to give the woman a sporting chance, but come on, points are at stake! Just jump out and destroy her before she see you! 0 for 1.
- KILL — Udesky in the forest. This guy stood no chance whatsoever and the raptors knew it, deciding to play with him for a while before putting him out of his misery. 1 for 2.
- MISS — Amanda as she dangles precariously from a tree. Again, aren’t you guys supposed to be able to jump really high? And if you’re so smart, why didn’t one of the raptors simply use the other as a springboard to get to her? This lack of effort is not impressing the judges. 1 for 3.
- 2x MISS — Dr. Grant, surrounded by four raptors. The very definition of “epic fail”, folks, as the raptors have Grant completely at their mercy. Do they attack as a pack from multiple angles, ensuring the kill? Of course not! Instead, they pose and taunt and hiss at him for about an hour until he’s saved by a little wiener boy with gas grenades. Multiple points are deducted for the sheer ineptitude of it all. 1 for 5.
- 2x MISS — Dr. Grant and his posse, this time surrounded by five raptors. No, this isn’t an instant replay of the previous scenario (not that instant replay is allowed in this league, anyway) — but it is one more example of the lackadaisical attitude that is dooming the raptor’s chances of repeating as champion. 1 for 7.
- MISS — Amanda as she hands over the eggs. The lead raptor gets right in her grill, face to face like two UFC fighters before the main event. Instead of chomping on her skull, however, the raptor gives her some sort of prehistoric eskimo kiss before running away into the forest. Seriously, are you idiots even trying any more? 1 for 8.
FINAL TALLY: 1 for 8 (0.125 killing average).
My, how the mighty have fallen. Once an unstoppable killing machine, it appears as though the velociraptor might not be able to defend its title after putting up some rather pathetic numbers this time around. But which dinosaur will takes its place at the top of the mountain?
A highly-touted prospect from the Jurassic Park Developmental League, this nasty up-and-comer is determined to make a name for itself in its big league debut. But does this behemoth have what it takes to compete with the big boys of Isla Sorna?
Without any professional experience, it’s hard to say what exactly the spinosaurus will bring to the table. We do know that it possesses some very different tools than the competition, including a long crocodilian snout, an insanely huge frame (up to 18 metres in length, making it larger than the T-Rex and perhaps even the largest carnivorous dinosaur to ever walk the planet), and long, sharp claws on its forelimbs, which are considerably more dexterous than those found on the tyrannosaurus.
The question is, can it make the most out these impressive implements of destruction when the pressure is on?
- KILL — Cooper as he is trying to catch the plane. Nice work on getting the blood to splatter on the plane’s windshield — a very good first impression for the rookie dinosaur. 1 for 1.
- KILL — Nash, the plane’s pilot. Using its narrow snout to its advantage, the spinosaur is able to easily reach into the wrecked plane and pull the puny human to his doom. So far so good. 2 for 2.
- MISS — The rest of the people trapped in the plane. Hey, all rookies are bound to get the jitters now and then. It’s understandable. Still, these points were practically gift-wrapped for the spinosaurus, as the people were trapped in the wrecked fuselage of the plane like a can of delicious sardines. 2 for 3.
- KILL — The tyrannosaurus. The rising contender puts the former champ out to pasture with a thrilling come-from-behind knockout victory — except replace the word “knockout” with “neck snap” and “victory” with “mercy killing”. 3 for 4.
- MISS — Dr. Grant and Eric, the little wiener kid. The spinosaur has Grant and the boy trapped with their backs literally against the wall, but it is unable to finish the job as they escape through an extraordinarily convenient human-sized hole in the fence. A disappointing turn of event, to be sure … 3 for 5.
- MISS — … Until the spinosaurus smashes down the fence and continues to chase! Now that’s showing some heart! A true passion for the game! This kid could go places with this kind of attitude. Unfortunately, the humans escape into a building and lock the door, which apparently cannot be smashed down even with nine tonnes of accelerated mass on your side. Those are the breaks, though. 3 for 6.
- MISS — The people on the boat. Sneaking up on the boat from under the water, and then rising up and causing it to capsize? An excellent plan, but the execution was severely lacking, especially in the “capsizing the boat” department. If you’re not going to use your size to your advantage, its working to your disadvantage. 3 for 7.
- MISS — Amanda, trapped underwater inside a cage. Come on, it’s like shooting fish in a barrel here — all you have to do is reach inside the cage, wraps your claws around her, pull her out, place her in your mouth, and swallow. Unfortunately, the spinosaur suffered a severe brain cramp and stopped at step two, apparently forgetting the rest of the set play. Typical rookie mistake. 3 for 8.
- MISS — Paul Kirby, dangling from a crane. It appears as though the scouts missed the spinosaur’s most glaring weakness — a lack of conditioning. Perhaps as it matures it’ll get into better shape, but there’s no excusing the rookie’s lack of effort during the late stages of the game. I mean, you’re inches away from the dude’s feet — suck it up and finish the job! 3 for 9.
FINAL TALLY: 3 for 9 (0.333 killing average).
The spinosaurus started the season on a very strong note, but at this stage of its career, it clearly lacks the mental aspect of the game that is the hallmark of a true champion. But with the previous winners choking harder than the Sens and the Sharks combined, the spinosaurus could still pull off an upset go deep into the tournament.
Another new entrant to the tournament, the pteranodon is perhaps the most unusual dinosaur to ever compete in this event. First and foremost, it can fly, which gives it a rather distinct advantage over the rest of the field. In addition, its long beak is useful for delivering vicious rapid-fire strikes that, while not killing blows due to the lack of teeth, are still capable of dishing out incredible damage.
Some critics will say that its smaller size and relative lack of weaponry compared to some of the more established veterans will hurt the pteranodon’s chances — but this unique competitor is bound to turn some heads no matter what happens on the field.
- KILL — The boat crew. Critics could debate this point, as the kill is never actually witnessed. However, the damage done to the boat, as well as the bones seen in the pteranodon nest, provide more than enough evidence in the eyes of the judges. 1 for 1.
- MISS — Eric as he crosses the bridge. An opportunistic pteranodon clutches the kid in his talons and flies off into the sunset. But instead of soaring really high and dropping Eric on a bunch of pointy rocks, or even pecking his eyes out as a mid-flight snack, the pteranodon simply gives him a first-class flight back to its nest. While that would score points for customer service, a kill it most certainly is not. 1 for 2.
- MISS — Eric in the nest. The baby pteranodons try their damnedest, but they prove incapable of bringing down a young boy. This is rather odd, considering that the much smaller compsognathus was capable of killing Peter Stormare in The Lost World. Clearly, the pteranodon’s youth and inexperience worked against it here. 1 for 3.
- MISS — Grant, Amanda, and Paul on the walkway. With the humans trapped on the rickety walkway, the pteranodon slowly batwalks toward them … and then falls into the water when the whole thing collapses, proving that slow and steady doesn’t win this race. Pteranodon supporters will undoubtedly point that it had no room to fly, and while this may be true, you gotta be prepared to play the game under any conditions — and this pteranodon was not. 1 for 4.
- MISS — Billy in the paraglider. In what should be an easy target, the pteranodon — which can, you know, actually fly — somehow fails to take down Billy, who is lazily gliding through the air on a dead guy’s parachute. While the pteranodon does manage to clip the paraglider, its unwillingness to go hard into the corners and grind out a victory could cost it in the long run. 1 for 5.
- MISS — Billy in the river. With Billy flailing around in the water, a pteranodon swoops down and grabs him in its talons. Unfortunately, it lacks the explosive strength that is need to succeed in this type of situation. The pteranodon is unable to maintain its grip on its prey and Billy falls back into the river. 1 for 6.
- 1/2 KILL — Billy in the river, part deux. With the clock winding down, the pteranodons smartly abandon the “grasp and fly” technique and simply start pecking the living hell out of Billy as he is swept downriver. It initially seems like the pteranodons emerge victorious in this encounter, but it is later revealed that Billy somehow, against all logical odds, escaped with his life. However, since he was covered in numerous bloody bandages, that will count for a partial kill in the eyes of the judges. 1.5 for 7.
FINAL TALLY: 1.5 for 7 (0.214 killing average).
In what is the year of the dark horse (or dark dino, if you will), another upstart newcomer has scored more points than both of the previous champions. While the pteranodon could not quite match the output of the spinosaurus, the “scourge of the skies” definitely made quite an impression on our panel, which looks forward to seeing what the pteranodon can do in future competitions.
Yet another newcomer to the Jurassic Park roster, the ceratosaurus certainly has the tools to make a difference in this tournament. Utilizing the classic theropod look (large powerful jaws, razor sharp teeth, and pathetic little forelimbs), the ceratosaurus is very much like a T-Rex — albeit on a much smaller scale (at about 20 feet long, it would be half the size of the tyrannosaur). Still, emulating a former champ, regardless of scale, is never a bad idea.
The ceratosaurus does have one major distinction over its larger brethren — a blade-like horn on its snout, proving that nasal protrusions is not solely the domain of the herbivore. Whether it can use this horn to its advantage remains to be seen.
- MISS — Grant, Amanda, and Paul as they dig through dino shit. In an unexpected turn of events, the ceratosaurus stumbles upon the group of humans while they are elbow-deep in spinosaur droppings, attempting to find a digested phone. In what should have been the perfect time to strike, the ceratosaurus refuses to get its nose dirty and take one for the team, instead opting to turn tail and run from the smelly, gross people. Question — if it doesn’t like the smell of shit, why was it lurking near the steaming piles in the first place? This blatant lack of heart won’t win over many fans, that’s for sure. 0 for 1.
FINAL TALLY: 0 for 1 (0.000 killing average).
It coulda been a contender, but the ceratosaurs simply didn’t have the will to get the job done. You simply can’t teach heart, kids — you either got it or you don’t. Hey, maybe the ceratosaurus will learn from this experience and come out ready to compete next time … or maybe it won’t. Either way, the judges definitely did not see the full potential of the ceratosaurus during this event and are hoping for a much better showing next time.
Corythosaurus / Parasaurolophus
A tag team entrant, this herbivore duo (characterized by their distinct cranial decorations) is looking to reverse the overwhelming trend of grass-eater ineptitude and finally score some points for Team Green.
History, of course, is very much against the hopes of the corythosaurus and parasaurolophus. Will it continue the legacy of herbivorous letdowns? Probably, but the judges have to look at all the entrants equally, regardless of whether or not they actually have a chance to win the competition.
- 2x MISS — The stampede sequence. Despite outweighing the puny humans by several tonnes, these herbivore suckjobs seemingly go out of their way to avoid running over any of the fleshy primates. Seriously, there are raptors behind you and people in front of you — why not just trample them and be done with it? Is that too much to ask? It’s survival of the fittest after all. Remarkably, one of the corythosaurs actually hits Udesky, but naturally it’s just a grazing blow that sends the man to the ground in comedic fashion. 0 for 2.
FINAL TALLY: 0 for 2 (0.000 killing average).
The judges weren’t expecting much, but this was outright terrible. Despite having several very real, tangible possibilities to score points, the corythosaurus and parasaurolophus came up lame. Let it be known that the Costa Rican Athletic Commission is looking into the possible bannination of these numbskulls from future competitions — and not because its looking out for the safety of the humans.
An absolute monster of a dinosaur (measuring in at 25 feet long, 43 feet tall, and weighing 78 tonnes), the brachiosaurus could probably clean up the competition if it could just put its minuscule brain to the task. Armed with a whip-like tail and staggering size, the brachiosaurus could undoubtedly do some damage — but alas, like some sort of prehistoric cow, it never does.
Hardly a favourite to win the competition (or even score any points, for the matter), the brachiosaurus is simply hoping to to embarrass itself too badly.
- MISS — The humans as they drift down the river. Intrigued by the potential to maybe score points and make their parents proud, a group of brachiosaurs come to the river’s edge to see what’s going on. Instead of crushing the people like the bugs they are, the dinos just lean over and make stupid faces at them. Idiots. 0 for 1.
FINAL TALLY: 0 for 1 (0.000 killing average).
No comment. Well, apart from this: “Hey brachiosaurus, you suck!”
The results are in! The winner, and new heavyweight champion of the (lost) world …
While a 0.333 average might be really good in baseball, it’s actually the worst ever showing for a champion in Jurassic Park history. What does this say about the spinosaurus? And more importantly, what does it say about the level of competition? Our analysts see this as a transition year, where the older champions have clearly lost their touch, but the new breed of dinosaurs coming up to replace them haven’t quite mastered their skills yet. As a result, nobody really stands out and it only takes a couple of big points to rise above the rest of the mediocrity.
Still, newcomers such as the spinosaurus and pteranodon laid some interesting groundwork to build upon for future tournaments — if there are any, of course. Dinosaurs in New York? Dinosaurs in Space? Time will tell, friends. Time will tell.