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Walking With Dinosaurs to be rebroadcast

Published at: April 19, 2000, 12:55 p.m. CST by staff

El Cosmico here...the BBC's excellent Walking With Dinosaurs, which was recently broadcast on the Discovery Channel, is going to be rebroadcast twice this Thursday, at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. Eastern Time.

I had a chance to check it out this past Sunday, and I've got to say, it had some outstandingly cool stuff. After all, it was narrated by Avery Brooks, who is one of the most badass actors ever, and certainly one of the best narrators around. Let's face it, we're probably never going to really know what these creatures were like, but this outstanding 3 hour special is worth watching just to get a little bit of insight, and because it's got some of the finest computer animation around. Oh, and the reason they're rebroadcasting? It got the highest ratings EVER on the Discovery Channel, drawing 10.7 million viewers (that's more than tuned into Fox and NBC). A total of 40 million watched some part of this show...that's a hell of a lot of people for a show on the Discovery Channel. Oh, and unlike Disney's Dinosaur, these dinos don't talk or coexist with evolved primates!

So....watch it if you get a chance. Damn good stuff.

-El Cosmico

mail me at: elcosmico@austin.rr.com

p.s., for video info, go check out: this BBC page, and this Discovery Channel page.

Readers Talkback

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  • April 19, 2000, 1:10 p.m. CST

    Get the DVD

    by TheBrit

    If you have a DVD machine, pick up this series on disc - lots of extras plus you get to see the show without the annoying Discovery ad breaks. The only downside is that Kenneth Brannagh's narration is nowhere near as good as Avery Brooks'. I've never heard a narrator overact before.

  • April 19, 2000, 1:40 p.m. CST

    damn web ads

    by yakitty_yak10

    it was good except for the damn web ads that kept telling you to find out more on the discovery website. what a pain in the ass. Thjey annoyed the piss outta me. AT least the DVD won't have them (i hope ...)

  • April 19, 2000, 1:42 p.m. CST

    Narration by Avery Brooks?

    by Rico

    I'm suprised they didn't keep Kenneth Branagh as the narrator since he did such a good job of the original British version. It's not like he's not known in the US. Unless someone in the US decided it would play better to American audiences with an American narrator?

  • April 19, 2000, 2:04 p.m. CST

    WWD Narration

    by JHorne

    According to a post on the alt.movies.monster newsgroup, the change in narration was due to two factors. First, all the editing on the Discovery version caused the original narration be be edited and jumbled, also. Secondly, there were some scientific inaccuracies that were corrected. All in all a great show. I can't wait for my DVD to arrive. Jeff Horne

  • April 19, 2000, 4:22 p.m. CST

    Walking With Dinasaurs deserves rewatching.

    by Roborob

    Such an excellent series absolutly deserves to be seen again. I have not heard the Avery Brooks nartion but If it is a good or better than Kenith Branners then it can only add to an excellent series.

  • April 19, 2000, 5:58 p.m. CST

    Toys R Us has the video set 2 buy!

    by GAYJEDI

    I bought the 2 video set at TRU last night for around $18.00. My opinion is it's great for not having Spielberg's Jurassic budget. Unfortunately, however, I think the dinos in the JP movies were cooler, faster, and more fun to watch. The Walking With Dinosaurs needed some zing zang. Watching a Diplodocus take a dump is not my idea of ooo ahhh. Now if it did a dump on a smaller dino in the line of fire, now that would be funny!

  • April 19, 2000, 6:44 p.m. CST

    The fact that they talk sucks

    by Stilt-Man

    NO ONE in the industry (brother-in-law is in the special effects industry) is willing to not give Disney the props that the dinosaurs and animation in the film will forever change how people view dinosaurs on the big-screen again, BUT did they have to talk...groan? The movie will look like 150-200 million went into it, but will not make as much money as it could because the story will be silly, and full of cutesy one-liner spouting dinosaurs to appeal to children...will still see it when it comes out though, the look (and look only) of the movie is incredible. I wonder if when it comes out on dvd, if it will be possible just to see it with the background music, effects etc. isolated from the audio track? I will see the re-broadcast of the Discovery Dinosaurs show, and probably get the DVD (many sites have it for %40 off) because the extras show the dinosaurs fighting and eating each other and stuff like that (so even the Discovery channel did not want to completely isolate children by showing how violent Dinosaurs could be towards each other)!!

  • April 19, 2000, 6:44 p.m. CST

    The fact that they talk sucks

    by Stilt-Man

    NO ONE in the industry (brother-in-law is in the special effects industry) is willing to not give Disney the props that the dinosaurs and animation in the film will forever change how people view dinosaurs on the big-screen again, BUT did they have to talk...groan? The movie will look like 150-200 million went into it, but will not make as much money as it could because the story will be silly, and full of cutesy one-liner spouting dinosaurs to appeal to children...will still see it when it comes out though, the look (and look only) of the movie is incredible. I wonder if when it comes out on dvd, if it will be possible just to see it with the background music, effects etc. isolated from the audio track? I will see the re-broadcast of the Discovery Dinosaurs show, and probably get the DVD (many sites have it for %40 off) because the extras show the dinosaurs fighting and eating each other and stuff like that (so even the Discovery channel did not want to completely isolate children by showing how violent Dinosaurs could be towards each other)!!

  • April 19, 2000, 6:46 p.m. CST

    A couple months back...

    by Dave_F

    ...when I was criticizing the approach Disney took for their pending CGI flick, "Dinosaur", folks kept mentioning this series with the highest praise. And they were right. I finally caught it and was simply fucking amazed. The approach, for those who haven't seen it, is similar to a purely observational nature show. The dinosaurs are treated as though they are *real* (and they definitely look it), and just happen to be the topic of the show instead of, say, a family of cheetahs. Great, great idea. If there was any small part of me that might've felt like seeing Disney's "Dineosaur" flick just to see how they handle photorealistic dinos, it's gone now, totally gone. The previews they ran for it during "Walking With Dinosaurs" just seemed truly weak in light of the far more fascinating reality the BBC presented.

  • April 19, 2000, 7:46 p.m. CST

    The DVDs great!!!

    by Fjacky33

    The dvd is not in 5.1 but still great!!!!just got it today.

  • April 19, 2000, 11:39 p.m. CST

    Walking in your footsteps

    by Kentucky Colonel

    "Hey there mighty brontosauraus, don't you have a lesson for us? You thought your rule would always last, there were no lessons in your past. We're walking in your footsteps," and so on......great show. Was anyone else rooting for the mammals?

  • April 20, 2000, 8:08 a.m. CST

    Talking Animals

    by twindaggerturkey

    The REAL problem is not that they talk, but that they have nothing to say. In recent Disney movies, "dialogue" has become synonymous with "pseudo-humorous anachronistic platitudes." The mainstream Disney A-holes should observe Pixar and realize that it wouldn't kill them to have a good script. Talking animals are not necessarily a bad thing-take WATERSHIP DOWN, PRINCESS MONONOKE, or even DUMBO or LADY AND THE TRAMP, for that matter. A dinosaur Watership Down would truly be the second coming (or, uh, damned close to it!) but it's not gonna happen. Another thing- the whole extinction plot is kind of a dead end. (Pun intended.) I mean, we all know what actually happened to the dinosaurs, so any story that revolves around the end of the Cretaceous Period is either phoney or extremely predictable. Maybe someone should just make a dinosaur movie that is set a good million years or so before the extinction. And!!!- make the heroes Deinonychus. (I am way more optimistic than I have any right to be.) WALKING WITH DINOSAURS was great, btw.

  • April 20, 2000, 9:51 a.m. CST

    Joxer on WWD

    by Joxer da Mighty

    Anyone know id the WWD DVD has the paleontologist interviews included? I heard these were not in the BBC version, and they're the next best thing to a disclaimer saying 'almost everything presented here as fact is pure speculation' :). Don't get me wrong, this was my favorite dinosaur related movie/TV show of all time time, but... Postosuchus did not piss and sauropods are not sea turtles! And I understand the budget was not big enough to feather the raptors- but if you can't do it right then why include them? At least they rushed in and added that feather crest to Ornitholestes... The way they updated the narration was cool, fixing the 'allosaur'/'carnosaur' in Australia problem (even though it might have been a ceolurosaur). To the gay jedi- Sure the JP dinosaurs may have been 'cooler', but these were way more accurate! Spikes on Diplodocus baby! Folding arm/wing raptors! Boo-yah! Ok I'm done.

  • April 20, 2000, 12:19 p.m. CST

    Feathered Raptors

    by Skeptic Ogre

    Actually, it's good that the raptors were not feathered. Turned out the "feathered raptors" find in China was a hoax.

  • April 21, 2000, 1:53 p.m. CST

    Very well done

    by buxley

    I thought Walking With Dinosaurs was very well done; Avery Brooks is a great narator, the animation/puppeteering was excellent and kudos to whoever came up with the notion of doing it as a You Were There-style documentary. That being said, I really found the "Find more information online" blurbs every ten minutes very distracting. Why distort the image to put the blurb in when they could have just put up the same info before the commercial breaks? Also, three consecutive hours was a bit much. Breaking it into two or three nights might have been a good idea. Cool image of the effects of the asteroid though. Very nicely done. Now I'm off to Amazon.com to order the DVD!

  • April 22, 2000, 2:23 a.m. CST

    What Discovery cut out of WwD!!

    by gc3

    Here is a page covering the differences between the Discovery channel version and the original BBC version (which is what is on the DVD). http://www.startribune.com/cgi-bin/stOnLine/article?thisSlug=dinbar Basically the Discovery Channel edited out some violent scenes (such as creatures eating their young) changed the narrator, and added those stupid "for more information visit out webpage" inserts. Not to mention the tons of ads. If you liked the show on Discovery, then you MUST get the DVD, it is excellent! George C. The Jessica Steen Page http://www.jessicasteen.com/

  • April 23, 2000, 6:51 a.m. CST

    DVD of WWD @Sam's Club

    by Unicorn

    I don't have cable, so I never saw the Walking With Dinosaurs as presented w/Avery Brooks that I see everyone talking about. He's very good, but then so is K.B.! I saw the mentions of the DVD at many (MANY!) of the DVD sites I frequent, so I was intrigued when I spotted the box at Super K-Mart yesterday morning. I picked it up and read the back, and instantly I knew my wife and I would love this, and that our 2-year old would be into it in not-too-many years. But I wanted to show it to her first, since it was $28. When all of us went to Sam's Club later in the day to grab Stuart Little, we spotted WWD for $22.49 and we picked it up. We watched the 1st chapter so far, and love it. I agree that they go way too far in presenting "the latest scientific discoveries" as fact rather than as speculation. For instance, last week (as I'm sure all you dino fans followed on CNN.COM) they uncovered a fossilized dino heart w/4 chambers (bird-like) that seems was built more like a warm-blooded animal than a cold-! This of course was way too late to include in WWD, so already it is out-of-date. But it is still very good. Wouldn't mind hearing the A.B. narration, esp. if they (as indicated above) tone down the "this is the way it for sure was" aspect of the voiceover. Glad I don't have the adverts for the web site that seem to have irritated most of you, though. Also glad I seem to have an uncut version, as the running time is 3:50 per the box and you all say Discovery is broadcasting 3 hours worth...and that includes the web adverts?! I don't know how much of that 3:50 is the making-of documentary on the 2nd disc, though. Usually a supplement like that isn't inlcuded in the running time, but there HAVE been exceptions! Any way you look at it, though, I agree this is great and well worth having. It simply looks smashing!

  • May 15, 2000, 1:49 p.m. CST

    3 hours?

    by DAVE18

    Its a six part series for gods sake! Why show it all in 1 night?