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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr
enik1138 at popapostle dot com
"The Wild"
Jurassic Park: Raptors Hijack #1 (Topps Comics)
Written by Steve Englehart
Pencils by Neil Vokes
Inks by Rich Rankin
Cover by Michael Golden

A new researcher and a mysterious ape encounter the fleeing raptors.

Story Summary

Muldoon, Grant, Ellie, and Malcolm fly over the Amazon rain forest in a helicopter, searching for the two remaining raptors, Alf and Celia.

On the ground below, an older woman with binoculars observes a gorilla strangely out of place in the South American jungle. The gorilla encounters the two raptors and a battle ensues. Although he gives as good as he gets, the gorilla finally runs off to lick his wounds.

Shortly after, Muldoon spots the mysterious gorilla. Bewildered at the African animal's presence in South America, Muldoon and the scientists tell the pilot to set down to investigate. After unloading his passengers, the pilot flies back to base to refuel and await contact for pick up.

During the trek through the jungle, Malcolm again spends time flirting with Ellie when he can get away with it. Suddenly the gorilla grabs Ellie from up in a tree and takes off with her.

Meanwhile, the old woman is now observing the raptors and she soon recognizes motion and gestures made by the dinosaurs as having meanings such as happiness, trust, peace, courting, and biology...with biology presumably meaning the desire to reproduce.

In Palo Alto, California, at the headquarters of InGen, Hammond receives evidence that rival company Biosyn is responsible for the initial kidnapping of the raptors (and Grant and Ellie) from Isla Nublar (in "Aftershocks"). He knows Biosyn is also most likely behind the attempted theft of dinosaur embryos before that (in Jurassic Park). Commenting that he let their destruction of his dinosaur preserve go unchallenged because he needed to keep the park secret, he decides he can't keep letting repeated assaults go unchallenged. He tells his assistant he wants Biosyn to start feeling the pain.

Back in the Amazon, the gorilla places Ellie high in the relative safety of a dead tree when he encounters the raptors again. Another fight among the beasts ensues and the gorilla is knocked down a cliff. Alf then races to the dead tree but Ellie has managed to find a new tree to hide in. When they hear something approaching, the raptors flee. It turns out to be Muldoon, Grant, and Malcolm and Ellie rejoins them.

Meanwhile, the old woman re-locates the raptors and approaches them, using the hand signals for peace and trust.

TO BE CONTINUED IN JURASSIC PARK: RAPTORS HIJACK #2

 

Didja Notice? 

In the "What Has Gone Before" summary of the story so far on the inside front cover, it is indicated that Muldoon had entered the Amazon rain forest in the previous issues' pursuit of the raptors. This would indicate they have proceeded quite a ways south from the escape point at Rafael's compound near Puerto Miranda, Venezuela (I would guess about 500 miles).

Page 2 reveals that the raptors' mother was known as Mmms by them and the two brothers who died early on (in "Dark Cargo") were Tssr and Br.

On page 9, the pilot of the helicopter appears to be wearing a Jurassic Park cap.

Also on page 9, Malcolm refers to Muldoon as Bwana. Bwana is a Swahili word which more-or-less means master or lord, which Malcolm himself later refers to him as ("lord and master") on page 11.

On page 13 there is a fairly subtle panel of the raptors in silhouette such that they blend in against the jungle background.

As the old woman, a primate researcher, observes the raptors' courtship movements on page 15, we see one raptor rubbing its head against the other, similar to the affectionate actions of Godzookie the Ouranosaur toward Derrick in "Photo Finish" Part 1. At the time, I postulated they may have scent glands on their heads like a cat. Given the evidence here, perhaps Godzookie was actually making romantic overtures toward Derrick!

Hanging on a wall of Hammond's office on page 16 is what may be a map of the Jurassic Park compound on Isla Nublar.

Also on page 16, Hammond says they suspect Biosyn of being behind the attempt to steal embryos from the park (during the events of Jurassic Park). He may only suspect, but we know from the novel that Dodgson was working for Biosyn when he made the deal with Nedry for the embryos.

The story of the gorilla so far is obviously based on the story of the classic 1933 film King Kong. In the film, Kong, a gigantic ape on a time-lost island, fights dinosaurs and kidnaps a beautiful blond woman, placing her high up in a dead tree to protect her. Here, the mysterious gorilla in the Amazon fights the raptors and kidnaps Ellie, placing her high up in a dead tree to protect her.

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