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Clash of the Dinosaurs (2009) is one of Discovery Channel's many dinosaur-related documentaries. It was presented in a Miniseries format, and contained a grand total of four hour-long episodes. Each concentrated on different aspects of the dinosaur lifestyle, such as how they coped with environmental changes, how they hunted and defended themselves, and how they reproduced.

The show received notoriety even before its TV debut, thanks to the heavy advertising campaign the TV station gave it. When it finally aired, it quickly gained a bad reputation due to the several serious problems that plagued it. Besides its criminal overuse of (admittedly pretty) Stock Footage, Clash of the Dinosaurs infamously quote-mined paleontology expert Mathew Wedel who appeared on it, and presented wild theories as solid facts. Thanks to these shortcomings, the program is nowadays considered by dinosaur fanatics to be one of the worst dino-documentaries of recent times, and the offended scientist actually encouraged his fellow paleontologists to boycott the production company.

The series was followed by a special titled The Last Day of the Dinosaurs. This time, the producers told us their story of how these majestic creatures went extinct. This one had fewer problems.


A list of tropes that appear in the series:

 (in high voice) "Hi, I'm a Deinonychus!"

(in low voice) "Hi, I'm a Sauroposeidon!"

(squishing motion)

 "For those going to watch the show, a warning: The documentarians often take anything that any of the talking heads speculated about, and transformed these into declarative statements of fact. In some cases this is particularly egregious, because I strongly disagree with some of these statements and believe the facts are against some of these (say, about tyrannosaurid cranial kinesis…) and they present these as facts rather than suppositions."

 "[The program] is incredibly repetitive, to the point that I found it hard to watch for any length of time without my attention wandering. Not just the CGI clips, but the narration as well. You’ll learn in 30 seconds why females tend to be choosier about mates than males (eggs are more expensive than sperm), and spend the next 15 minutes having that slowly beaten in your brain using as much empty verbiage as possible. Ditto every other fact on the show."

Notes

  1. The one who was quote-mined, at that!
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