The Turok Son of Stone DVD.

§ February 25th, 2008 § Filed under turok Comments Off on The Turok Son of Stone DVD.

So I watched the Turok Son of Stone direct-to-DVD cartoon over the weekend, and…well, overall I enjoyed it, though it’s a bit different in tone from the comics I grew up with.

For one, Turok is a lot more angry and violent and moody in the cartoon than he ever was in the original Dell/Gold Key comics. There’s a whole lot of him in the cartoon lookin’ like this:

In the comics, Turok was more of a rational father figure to his young companion Andar, attempting to teach by example, and often presented as a civilized counter to the savage Lost Land and its primitive inhabitants. However, in the movie, Turok is…well, I already said. “Angry and violent and moody” – cast out from his tribe, nearly everyone he loves dies, etc., so I guess he’s got good reason to be a bit on the miffed side.

And did I say violent? There is a surprising amount of blood and violence in this cartoon, with lots of graphically depicted knifes in chests, spears through bodies, gunshots to stomachs, the occasional head and limb flying here and there. To wit:

Which, for some odd reason, reminded me of an Eternal Warrior cover (issue #35) from later Turok-publisher Valiant Comics:

Yeah, that’s the comic that came with the “protective” white wraparound cover warning of the “graphic image” hidden therein. Yeah, we all thought it was dumb then, too.

Er, anyway, back to the Turok movie. On the good side, once the gang is in the Lost Valley, there is plenty of Turok-fightin’-dinosaurs action. For example, AXE TO THE HEAD:

And there’s a nice sequence with Turok fighting a bunch of these critters, though realistically that arm would have been yanked right out of that socket, there:

Yeah, I’m demanding realism from my “Indians fighting dinosaurs” movie.

One minor complaint — at no point does anyone refer to a dinosaur as a “honker.”

On second thought, maybe that was a good thing.

Also included on the disc is a 20-minute documentary giving an overview of the character’s history, focusing mostly on the comics and cast/crew interviews for the film, with only passing mention of the video games. At one point it is mentioned, with a straight face, that the first Valiant Comics issue of Turok sold 1.7 million copies, leaving unmentioned that many of those copies ended up unsold and dumped in bargain bins, as the comic was over-ordered for an investor market that had mostly abandoned Valiant by that point. Or maybe is was mentioned…there were plenty of obvious edits in the interviews. But there’s a lot of talk about the origins of the character, with several contributions by comics writer/historian Mark Evanier, and there are even a few words from the Native American advisor on the film, who made sure the costumes and weapons were reasonably correct.

Overall, I did like the cartoon…it packs a lot of action into a fairly short runtime (about an hour and a quarter), and while the plot holds no real surprises, it all moves along entertainingly enough. And while this is not quite the original Turok character, there are several undeniably cool moments of Turok-vs.-dinosaur badassery. Older Turok fans may be taken aback a bit at the amount of blood splashing around, and you may want to screen it first before unleashing it on any kids. But, if you’re an older kid, and if you’re an old Turok fan who can handle some minor adjustments to the premise, give it a shot. At least a rental, or, ahem:

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