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Jurassic Fight Club
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this educational series recreates some very intense dinosaur battles, using computer graphics to show them fighting to the death. It's more educational than scary, but some of the scenes do get rather gory, including shots of bloody dino fangs and images of the winners feasting on their victims' carcasses. But the CGI blood and gore probably won't scare dino-loving young viewers -- in fact, it may even be a key draw for some of them, pulling them in as they learns some pretty complex scientific concepts.
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What's the story?
When two fearsome dinosaurs go claw-to-claw, it's a safe bet that one will end up as lunch -- but it's hard to know today exactly how these fights went down millions of years ago. In JURASSIC FIGHT CLUB, scientists use modern forensic techniques to examine fossil deposits, painstakingly recreating the conditions that drove two dinosaurs into a battle to the death. Clues like tooth marks on bones, the positions of the reptiles' remains, and even the behavior patterns of animals alive today all offer surprising insights into a single encounter ages ago. Think of it as CSI crossed with a paleontology lecture.
Is it any good?
Host "Dinosaur George" Blasing and dino experts from many well-regarded universities provide plenty of details about the creatures' habits, and the show moves back and forth between computer simulations of the beasts in action and shots of paleontologists examining their remains, both in the field and in the lab. Each episode typically focuses on a single fossil find and the resulting efforts to determine exactly how the dinosaur died, using evidence gathered from what the narrator describes (in appropriately dramatic tones) as a "70 million-year-old crime scene."
After the experts carefully set the stage, viewers get the payoff: The final segment of each episode features a lengthy, computer-animated dino battle, with insightful color commentary provided by the narrator and experts. Sure, it's mostly conjecture, but after the previous segments detailing how these creatures lived, fought, and died, it certainly seems like much more than just an educated guess, and it's a fun way to absorb some pretty rigorous science.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how much we really know about dinosaurs. The show's experts paint a detailed picture of each violent dino encounter, explaining which beasts are fighting and why, but much of the information in these stories, while compelling, is still just conjecture. Do you think the descriptions seem accurate? Can you think of a better scenario? Why are dinosaurs such fascinating subjects for movies and TV shows?
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