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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

Valley of the Dinosaurs: The Attack of the Apemen Valley of the Dinosaurs
"The Attack of the Ape Men"

Valley of the Dinosaurs #11 (Charlton)
Art and Story: Unknown
December 1976


Katie is kidnapped and enslaved by a primitive nomadic tribe.


Story Summary


After a period of harsh rains, the cave dwellers must repair their dam on a nearby lake to prevent flooding of their homes. Meanwhile, searching for berries in the jungle with Digger, Katie is assaulted by primitive, nomadic humanoids. Digger tries to protect her, but is knocked senseless by a club and the teenage girl is taken as a slave. Digger manages to drag himself back to his home village and they realize something has happened to Katie, sending Lok in search of her while the dam repairs continue.


The nomads have remained in the area longer than usual due to the disappearance of the leader's son, Jano, so Lok finds them in a temporary village of their own and rescues Katie. But she falls into a cavernous hole in the jungle and finds the missing Jano there, with a broken leg. As the cave dwellers send a war party to confront the nomads, Lok and Katie carry Jano back to his people on a stretcher. The tribe's leader is overjoyed to have his son back and a war is averted.




Didja Know?


The cover of this issue doesn't seem to have any relevance to the two stories within. In fact, oddly, Katie here appears to be lounging about, unconcerned about her father's battle against a caveman right next to her! Plus, a Styracosaurus is lumbering towards them all...but appears to be at least partially walking on air at the edge of a cliff!

Valley of the Dinosaurs #11


Didja Notice?


Page 1 reveals that, despite being referred to as "cave dwellers" in the opening narration of each TV episode, the tribe that has befriended the Butlers have some huts that tribe members live in as well! And there is a log dam on a nearby lake that protects the huts from floods. We might presume that the Butlers have taught the tribe how to build huts and dams, hence the discrepancy from the opening narration, especially given that this comic book story likely takes place quite some time after the events depicted in the TV series itself (which ended in 1974, while the comic continued through 1976).


In panel 5 of page 1, Digger looks like he's taking a shit, with his rump just slightly obscured by a rock!

Digger takes a dump


Katie and Lok both refer to her attackers, the Tabne, as "talking apes", but really they appear to be just more primitive humans, possibly Neanderthals.


In panel 1 of page 4, Katie is referred to as Kathie!


Page 4 refers to Katie as a champion swimmer. This was originally revealed in "The Challenge of Mata-Zin".


The sauropod that emerges from the water on page 4 may be intended as a Brontosaurus.


The pterosaur flying in the background of panel 5 on page 4 may be a Pteranodon, judging by the head crest.


Apparently the Tabne speak the same language as the cave dwellers, for Katie is able to understand them, and they, her!


Despite the bad bruise from being clocked on the head by a Tabne club while attempting to protect Katie, Digger is immediately put to work hauling logs by Tana on page 10!


In panel 4 of page 10, "the Valley of the Dinosaurs" is mistakenly referred to simply as "the Valley of Dinosaurs."


In this issue, both Lok and the Tabne face a theropod they refer to as a Taharga. On page 11, it is identified as Tyrannosaurus. But it is depicted with three claws on the forelimbs in some panels and two in others. All members of the Tyrannosaurus genus had only two claws the forelimbs. Another alleged tyrannosaur is referred to as Godon in "A Turned Turtle" and "Rogue Rex".


On page 13, the Tabne leader, Brack, throws Katie over his shoulder, intending to beat her as punishment for failing to work as his mate's slave. Katie shouts, "Get your dirty hands off me, you over-grown monkey!" This may be a reference by the writer to a line from the 1968 film Planet of the Apes, in which actor Charlton Heston shouts, "Take your stinking paws off me, you damn dirty ape!"


On page 18, Digger and Glump appear to be crying tears at the possible loss of Katie!


On page 19, John and the cave dwellers face off against a saber-toothed cat.


In the last panel of the story, notice that Digger is rubbing his head against Katie's leg in happiness that she is back, almost like a cat!


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