Dinosaurs

ABC (ended 1994)
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  • Episode Guide
  • S 4 : Ep 14

    Georgie Must Die

    Aired

  • S 4 : Ep 13

    Into the Woods

    Aired

  • S 4 : Ep 12

    Working Girl

    Aired

  • S 4 : Ep 11

    Variations on a Theme Park

    Aired

  • S 4 : Ep 10

    Life in the Faust Lane

    Aired

  • Cast & Crew
  • Kevin Clash

    Baby Sinclair

  • Jessica Walter

    Fran Sinclair

  • Sam McMurray

    Voice of Roy Hess

  • Stuart Pankin

    Earl Sinclair

  • Gary Owens

    Narrator

  • Photos (1)
  • show Description
  • The show was conceived by the Muppet masters at Jim Henson Productions, who wanted to do a sitcom-style show with puppets using the animatronics processes the company had developed. The brain trust settled on the idea of doing a straightforward show about a family that happened to be composed of dinosaurs. Henson Productions offshoot The Creature Shop developed huge, lifelike puppets that could be operated from inside by puppeteers, and Brian Henson, Jim's son, devised a process called ‘audio animatronics' to bring the facial expressions of these puppets to life. The shows premise mixed elements of The Flintstones and The Simpsons, focusing on a blue-collar family of dinosaurs. Earl, the father, worked for the Wesayso Corporation and leveled trees to make way for tract homes. His blustery qualities were balanced out by his even-tempered wife Fran. The Dino clan had three children: rebellious teen Robbie, shopaholic preteen Charlene, and Baby, a smart-alecky infant. Rounding out the family was Grandma Ethyl, who always seemed to be locked in a battle of wills with Earl. Other characters included B. P. Richfield, Earl's fearsome boss, and Roy Hess, a prehistoric swinger buddy of Earl's. Dinosaurs depicted dinosaur life as being very close to human life: they watched television, shopped at supermarkets, and held down nine-to-five jobs. This allowed the show to tackle relevant social concerns in their stories. For instance, in Steroids To Heaven Robbie tried to overcome feelings of inadequacy by building up his body with an artificial growth hormone called ‘thornoids.' You didn't expect a very special episode of Dinosaurs, now did you? In making the dinosaurs human-like, the show allowed itself a unique opportunity to comment on our foibles as human beings. Much like modern homo sapiens, the shows prehistoric protagonists wasted their precious resources and allowed themselves to stay bound to outmoded ways of thinking when they could turn things around by trying out more progressive ways of thinking. The latter concern was usually voiced by Robbie, who questioned many of his dinosaur family's customs. Dinosaurs managed to rack up 65 episodes before being cancelled in July of 1994. It is a memorable entry in the sitcom canon, not only for its use of technology but also for the social messages it passed on to its viewers...through a group of animatronic dinosaurs (who knew?).moreless

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  • chriseternal

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    EDITOR

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (323)

    • Earl: There's no dinner, there's no vegetables. Fran: Dinner ate the vegetables. Earl: And left just like that, without coffee? Well, he's never coming back here again.

    • Earl: I went to work. Baby: Why? Earl: Your mother makes me.

    • Fran: (sternly) Earl Sneed Sinclair! Earl: Oh, God. My whole name.

    • Arthur Rizzic: Do we know each other? Earl: Yeah, we know each other. In fact, my main course last night was supposed to be "you stew." But right now, I'll settle for "come-as-you-are tartare."

    • Baby: Am I at work? Earl: No. Baby: Am I at work? Earl: No! Baby: Am I at work? Earl: Yes! Baby: No I'm not.

    • Baby: I'm gonna bite you now. (bites Earl)

    • (Earl is watching TV and the baby's hand reaches for the remote) Earl: Don't you touch that remote. (The baby grabs the remote) Earl: Don't you pick that up. (the baby picks it up) Earl: You turn off that TV and you're going to be one sorry baby dinosaur. (The baby turns off the TV and pops up) Baby: I'mmmmmmm sorrrrrrrrrrrrry. Earl: Give it back. Baby: Story. Earl: No story. Baby: Story. Earl: No story. Baby: Story. Earl: No story, now give me that. (The baby hits Earl with the remote) Earl: Once upon a time dinosaurs didn't have families. They lived in the woods and they ate their children. It was a golden age. Baby: (laughing) Then what? Earl: Well then not too long ago they started settling down and raising families.

    • (Earl claims to be the king of the dinosaurs) Earl: What do you have to say to that? Fran: The Tyranosaurus Rex is the king of the dinosaurs. Earl: That's debatable. Fran: No it's not, I dated one in high school.

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    Notes (73)

    • Marco Zappia was nominated for the 1991 Emmy Award for "Outstanding Editing for a Series - Single Camera Production" for this episode.

    • This episode added to the Dino-Volume 1 along with "Hurling Day".

    • We see in the dinosaurs decade that their calendars go backwards as Robbie mentioned to his father, Earl.

    • Fran's full name is Francise Sinclair.

    • Earl's official name is Earl Sneed Sinclair.

    • This episode was meant to be the pilot of the series.

    • John C. Mula, Brian Savegar and Kevin Pfeiffer won the 1991 Emmy Award for "Outstanding Art Direction for a Series" for this episode.

    • This is the first time that The Baby says his famous 'Not the Momma' line to Earl while hitting him with a frying pan. This would become the most recognized running gag of the show, and the one that most people remember when they think of it.

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    Trivia (27)

    • Earl exclaims "oh god!" over and over when the egg hatches. But, you will find out much later in episode The Greatest Story Ever Sold they had no higher power or deity they believed in... Why would they exclaim "oh god" then?

    • The DNN news anchor's name is Howard Handupme, a nod to the fact that all the characters are puppets, and also to the puppeteers who make them come to life.

    • When the "food" in the fridge is pouring the sugar into Baby's mouth, the sleeve of one of the puppeteers is visible.

    • In this episode, the Sinclair family seems to look down on eating vegetables and Robbie asks why they eat meat every single night, but in previous episodes we've seen the entire family eat vegetables.

    • During the final scene, a rod can be seen controlling the baby grapdelite's arm.

    • Robbie attends Bob LaBrea High School.

    • One of the board members is named Mr. Mason Dixon. The Mason-Dixon Line is used as a cultural and ideological divider--often when talking about sensitive topics such as those addressed in this episode--between the Northern and Southern United States.

    • Charlene's model of the universe is based off of the concept of the Earth being the center of the universe.

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    Allusions (90)

    • HSN: While Fran is cooking dinner for the family, the Dinosaur Shopping Network(DSN) plays in the background. This is an allusion to the Home Shopping Network thatis provided on most basic cable.

    • Big Oil Companies: The names of many of the main characters are based off of some of the biggest oil companies in the world. Sinclair- Sinclair Oil, an American gas company B.P. Richfield- British Petroleum, Richfield used to have stations across the West Coast of the US. Roy Hess- Hess Gasoline Grandma Ethyl- The Ethyl Corporation manufactured a lead-based anti-knock gasoline additive in the early to mid 20th Century. Ethyl became a synonym for premium gasoline. In some regional dialects, "oil" is pronounced as "earl".

    • The Honeymooners It has been said that Earl and Roy are very much based on the characters of Ralph Kramden and Ed Norton from The Honeymooners. It is more evident in Roy than in Earl.

    • CNN: The Dinosaur News Network(DNN) is a reference to CNN, the long-running Cable News Network.

    • Mister Ed While watching TV, a commercial comes on for Mr. Ugh. About a dinosaur who owns a caveman that can speak. This is a parody of Mister Ed, a show about a man who owned a horse who could talk.

    • La Brea Tar Pits: When Robbie asked about the tar pits, Ethyl said they were named after a dinosaur named Bob La Brea. This is a reference to the famous La Brea Tar Pits in the Miracle Mile district of Los Angeles, CA.

    • Hair Club For Men: While Robbie and Baby are watching TV, a commercial comes on for the "Horn Club for Males" which follows the same dialog and format as the Hair Club for Men commercials.

    • Title: The episode title is the same as the 1981 horror film, The Howling, starring Dee Wallace and Patrick Macnee. This was the first in the long-running series of werewolf films.

    Show More Allusions
  • Fan Reviews (61)
  • Another JIm Henson hit!

    By anastasia1243, Feb 08, 2014

  • Dinosaurs is one of the funniest shows ever!

    By lukewayson2, Oct 08, 2013

  • "Not the Mama!", but a review of "Dinosaurs".

    By Jaykeson, Nov 23, 2010

  • this brought memories

    By NathanRoth, May 26, 2010

  • i really liked watching this show when i was a kid it was funny.

    By cube2k8, May 07, 2010

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