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National Geographic Specials: Dino Death Trap. Dino Autopsy

On Sunday, December 9th, National Geographic channel
will be airing a "dino Sunday." 


It appears to be a feature on the dinosaurs of the
Junggar basin. It's broken into two parts; as
described below:

Dino Death Trap 

Deep in the dry and desolate Junggar Basin in western
China is a place known to scientists as ?The Pit of
Death? and ?Dinosaur Pompeii.? Hundreds of dinosaur
fossils lie stacked one on top of the other, piled
four and five high. But not just any
dinosaurs?well-preserved skeletons, many never before
seen. A bizarre T-rex ancestor, a triceratops
ancestor, an ancient crocodilian and nearly 40 more
different species dating back 160 million years, to a
time when little is known about dinosaur history.
Follow a team of paleontologists as they unearth
answers to a virtual black hole in dinosaur evolution.

Dino Autopsy

It?s a discovery that promises to transform what
scientists believe about the dinosaur ? a virtually
intact dinosaur mummy. Nearly everything we know of
dinosaurs comes from bones and teeth, usually the only
tissue durable enough to fossilize. The conditions
that preserved this extraordinary mummy were one in a
million, and early examination offers
never-before-seen details of what they really looked
like, as well as clues to how they moved and lived.
The paleontologists involved already believe that this
could prove to be one of the most important dinosaur
discoveries of all time.


I'm not sure what to think of it all yet. The
interviews with Matt Carrano and Gregory Erickson
(among many others) seem cool, but the repeated use of
the buzzword "raptor" has me turning away. The CGI
looks especially atrocious this time around (what's
with the stupid mane on _Guanlong_). The dinosaur
models look more like they were made for a videogame,
rather than a documentary.

Still, I'm going to reserve judgment until after it

Till then, set your TiVo's for December 9th (VCRs for
those of us still stuck in the 20th century).


"I am impressed by the fact that we know less about many modern [reptile] types 
than we do of many fossil groups." - Alfred S. Romer

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