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Old 18th October 2017, 09:32 PM
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Thunderbird 2 Thunderbird 2 is offline
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Newport, South Wales.
Posts: 452
Default Episode 2.17 - Attack of the Reptiles - Discussion

Gordon is dispatched to save the Pendergasts who fall foul of a mysterious valley filled with strange creatures...

Guest Cast:
Adam Hills - Buddy Pendergast
Lisa Moule - Ellie Pendergast
Sidney Cole - Local Guide
Frank & Fred - 'Themselves'

Written By:
Patrick Reiger

Directed by:
Theo Baynton
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Last edited by Thunderbird 2; 25th October 2017 at 08:18 PM.
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Old 22nd October 2017, 07:31 PM
Conrad Lefkon Conrad Lefkon is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 368
Default Conrad Lefkon's Review of ‘Attack of the Reptiles’

1 Sets

The physical sets were amongst the best that they have done. The trees, plants and undergrowth, although presumably miniatures, scaled up wonderfully well to create a very convincing valley in the mist. The disused laboratory sets were great as well and had that dilapidated, damp and decaying feel so reminiscent of Jurassic Park.

2 Vehicles

There wasn’t much hardware on show although this is the first time I have noticed the crane that is normally used to deliver the astronauts to Thunderbird 3 being used to deliver a Tracy to Thunderbird 1. Did it always run on these rails – I hadn’t noticed before?

The hover boat was ok but the trip along the fast flowing stream emphasised all the problems the series has with scaling water effectively (they just don’t do it).

3 Characters

Buddy and Ellie Pendergast are uplifting and irritating in equal measure with their relentless enthusiasm. I liked that they both had new exploration outfits to wear. The funny, although unintentional, pay-off was that, as is the case with CGI, the jacket IS the body. This meant that Ellie had the same physique as Buddy and at times she looked like a female bodybuilder.

Frank and Fred were cute but only slightly menacing – no teeth. I think in ‘Attack of the Alligators’ the problem was to get the alligators/crocodiles to move at all. My impression is that these bearded dragon lizards move so quickly that the footage just has to be slowed down. I thought that the purple toned lizard-eye view was a nice touch and the orangey yellow silhouettes helped me think of the characters as food targets.

4 Story

There were plenty of action sequences and a few tense moments such as when Gordon was being lowered on the pulley and Buddy fell silent. I liked it when the reptiles were trying to break into the ventilation shaft that the gang were hiding in. Of course, there was also the extended chase scene along the jungle path towards the Eden Project type complex.

The story was full of references to ‘Attack of the Alligators’ and ‘Jurassic Park’ which ticks all the boxes for me. A brilliant effort and my favourite episode of TBAG. The Foster Brothers music rose to the occasion as always. I just loved the giant tomatoes and reference to Orchard Industries.

The reference to The Hood being a silent partner and the Pendergasts’ mention of series 15 of their tv adventure show in which they could revisit this location (as they hadn’t been able to film this time) encourages me to think that we haven’t seen the last of Frank and Fred!

Rating: A+
ZUCA: "I... I thought you were someone else."
SCARLET: "Someone else dressed in scarlet? You've gotta be kidding."

Last edited by Conrad Lefkon; 22nd October 2017 at 07:43 PM.
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Old 25th October 2017, 06:04 PM
FAB_61 FAB_61 is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 176

Must admit when I heard about this episode I was very wary - I've never been convinced by Attack of the Alligators because, for all it's technical achievements, the use of the live animals somehow broke the illlusion of "real" that the use of the puppets etc usually sought to achieve.

I'm therefore very pleased with the results here - the whole integration was great, with good use (but not over-use) of Frank and Fred (I thought the "reptile view" shots were well used).

The whole of the CGI was well done - have they got new "masters" for some of the characters? As the eye movements and lip sync seemed better than it has at times in the earlier episodes, and the body movement was very fluid.

The integration of the characters into the real sets wqs pretty seamless with some good depth to the shots.

The only let down for me was the fact the jet boat - (for all of the added CGI spray etc) wasn't actually disturbing the surface of the river - surely they could have rigged something to churn it up.

A good story arc packed into the time available, perhaps a bit contrived in places (not sure why the facility had to be something to do with the Hood in the past - it could have been any company doing something it shouldn't) but it worked well - even down to the final homage to the original when the box of reptiles turned up as a present.

More as good as this and I'll be happy.

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