Jurassic Park: Seventh Iteration
Destroying the World
Malcolm and Hammond engage in an argument. Hammond is relieved that the animals did not get free and overrun the world. Malcolm says that the world cannot be destroyed. It will always survive whatever disasters take place. If humanity destroys itself, the earth will not miss us.
The park seems finally to have been brought under control. There are now fewer animals, because some have been killed by other animals. Since the fences were down for so long, all the animals have mingled. Grant and Muldoon decide to search for the animal nests, especially the raptor nests. They have to account for every animal born on the island before they allow the Costa Rican National Guard to destroy the entire place. They find some grenades in an unmarked storeroom and set off. Grant explains the mystery of how the dinosaurs were able to breed. Under certain conditions frogs can change sex, and the dinosaurs all have frog DNA. Grant, Ellie and Gennaro discover the raptor nest. Grant slips down into the hole.
Malcolm is lapsing into a coma, and Hammond blames everyone else for the failures of the park. As he walks to his bungalow, he is surprised by a juvenile tyrannosaur. He runs away but falls down a hillside and ends up lying face down in a stream. His right ankle appears to be broken. He is only a hundred yards from his bungalow, and he shouts for help. Meanwhile, Malcolm has become delirious, his fever is higher, and the supply of antibiotics is about to run out.
Ellie and Gennaro join Grant in the dinosaur nest and hide behind some boxes. They see two adult raptors and some babies. Grant guesses there are at least thirty raptors in the nest, including four or six adults. He examines the first nest and counts the remains of fourteen eggs. After examining two more nests, he concludes that thirty-four raptors have been born. Ellie notes that when the raptors stand still, they all face a certain direction. She wonders whether it is ritual behavior. Grant thinks it may be a form of communication.
Hammond has been trying for an hour to climb the hill, but he is still only one-third of the way up. He is tired, dizzy and in pain. He sees some compys approaching—the scavengers. Hammond throws rocks to ward them off, which only works for a while. The compys soon attack him, poisoning him with their bites. The poison acts as a narcotic, and Hammond feels relaxed and peaceful as he dies.
At the nest’s exit, Grant and the others observe the raptors on the edge of a swamp, near the beach that looks out onto the Pacific Ocean. They are all lined up together, staring south. A ship appears from the south and the animals watch it. Grant observes how they all behave as a group, and decides that they are organized around a matriarchal pecking order. He concludes that they are staring at the ocean because they want to migrate.
Grant, Ellie and Gennaro are picked up by a helicopter belonging to the Costa Rican National Guard. Muldoon and the children are already in the helicopter. There are several explosions as the army begins to destroy the island. Grant realizes he will never know where the dinosaurs would have migrated to.
Epilogue: San José
For several days, Grant is questioned by the authorities. He is visited by Marty Guitierrez, who found the original specimen of the procompsognathus. Guitierrez tells Grant of a strange event in the rural north: some unknown animals ate the crops and moved each day in a straight line from coast to mountains to jungle. The animals have not been found. Both Guitierrez and Grant suspect there may be more.
In works of popular literature such as Jurassic Park, there is usually a moral scheme operating. The good characters survive, the bad characters often do not. Good triumphs. In this novel, in addition to the thief Nedry, the three characters who most exemplify the recklessness and overconfidence of Jurassic Park all die. These are Hammond, Wu and Arnold. Hammond was the businessman too intent on making money to acknowledge the flaws and risks of what he was doing; Wu was the geneticist who thought he could control and manipulate the uncontrollable; and Arnold was the engineer who built the park and who confidently asserted more than once that the park was under control again when it clearly was not. Their deaths are symbolic of what the novel encourages us to see as fatal human attitudes: meddling with genetic structures, rampant desire for profit, blind faith in computers. Interestingly, in the movie version of Jurassic Park, it is the lawyer, Gennaro, who is the first to be killed by a dinosaur—a testament to the moviemakers’ faith in the eternal unpopularity of lawyers. Crichton, however, allows Gennaro to live through to the end.