Valley of the Dinosaurs
"Lord of the Reptiles"
Valley of the Dinosaurs #6 (Charlton)
Art and story: Fred Himes
Greg and Katie encounter a tribal ruler who
On a stroll through the jungle, Greg,
Katie, and Digger come upon the scene of a
Ceratosaurus menacing a cave-woman. They attempt to
draw the carnivore away and are soon assisted by a pair of
ankylosaurids. After the Ceratosaurus is driven away,
they see that a tattooed man is in command of the two
ankylosaurids and the woman obeys his silent bidding to mount
one of the beasts and ride away with him. But the young woman
appears terrified and Katie and Greg know she is actually a
Meanwhile, John and Glump are searching for
the trio, who've been gone for a long time. He meets up with
them in the jungle and they explain what has happened. Together,
they travel to the realm of the lord of the reptiles. John uses
fire to help free the lord's captive humans and the fear of the
fire drives one of the
ankylosaurids to charge its master, driving him off a cliff and
into a river, where he is swept away by the current.
The ankylosaurids seen on the cover of this issue and in the
story itself are of the
ankylosaurid family but not the most popularly known genus of
it, Ankylosaurus, despite being named as
Ankylosaurus in the story, as evidenced by the horn-like
protrusions jutting from the sides of the skull. They may be
members of one of the following genuses which are known for such
protrusions: Anodontosaurus, Euoplocephalus,
Pinacosaurus, Scolosaurus, or Talarurus.
These are the genuses which were known at the time this story
was written; others with similar features have been discovered since
then as well.
The ankylosaurids are depicted with a forked tongue. This was
artistic license since dinosaurs were believed to be most
similar to reptiles at the time the story was written. Modern
paleontologists lean towards them being more bird-like and
forked tongues are unlikely.
The Ceratosaurus depicted in this story is pretty
accurate, down to the four-clawed forelimbs.
When confronted by the
on page 2, Digger faints.
On page 5, panel 2, the cave-woman's fur anklet is on her left
leg. But it is on her right when seen elsewhere in the story.
Notice on page 6, panel 4 that Digger is dreaming of a bone.
The pterosaur seen on page 7 is a Pteranodon.
The plants growing in the foreground of panel 2, page 7 appear
to be a type of cycad, known to date to the early Permian
period, 280 million years ago, with many species existing in the
Page 8 describes John, Katie, Greg, Digger, and Glump walking
through the dank, humid cave for hours. Apparently, they brought
enough torches to keep burning that long!
On page 8, the word "yielding" is mistakenly used in place of
"wielding": "Yielding its tail like a deadly club, the great
horned lizard strikes."
On page 9 the
ankylosaurids commanded by the lord of the reptiles are depicted
with pointed teeth. Since ankylosaurids are all plant-eaters, it
is unlikely they would have pointed teeth. Possibly, the lord of
reptiles has used tools to chisel their teeth into that
shape in order to more easily intimidate enemies.
The lord of the reptiles refers to one of his
ankylosaurid pets as Tumba.
The lord of the reptiles is swept away downriver, a fate similar
to that which happened to Mata-Zin in
The cave-woman tells John that her tribe is from the "other
valley". This may be the valley of the Three Giants seen in
"A Turned Turtle" and possibly
the same valley mentioned in
"Katie's Challenge" and
"The Children of Zutra".
At the end of the story, John states that the lord of the
reptiles mastered the "Ankylosaurus"
with fire. But there is no evidence anywhere in the story that
fire had anything to do with it!