Literature Study GuidesJurassic ParkFifth Iteration Chapters 44 47 Summary

Jurassic Park | Study Guide

Michael Crichton

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Jurassic Park | Fifth Iteration: Chapters 44–47 | Summary

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Summary

Chapter 44: Search

Donald Gennaro and Robert Muldoon inspect the T. rex's kill. John Arnold calls them on the radio to say he's found Dennis Nedry. Gennaro and Muldoon drive to the site, where they scare the scavenging compys from his body. They take the rocket launcher from Nedry's car, but leave his body and move on to search for the T. rex.

Alan Grant and the kids drift with the river, which is narrowing. They hear a dinosaur scream in the distance. The river carries them on to the aviary. It's isn't quite finished, but Grant remembers that there is a second lodge there. They stop the boat to check for motion sensors or a phone.

Chapter 45: Aviary

It has been 14 hours since Nedry disabled the park's computer system. Arnold has the systems back on and the phones working, but can't locate the T. rex.

Out in the park, Grant and the kids find the lodge unfinished and of no help. They see many pterodactyls and cearadactyls, fish-eating dactyls. The dactyls attack, biting Lex Murphy and trying to carry her off. When she throws her baseball glove at them, the dactyls snatch it as prey and fly off, allowing Grant and the children to escape. They resume their trek back to the visitor center and the raft. Traveling down the river, they hear the T. rex going after smaller dinosaurs, and see dilophosaurs—which don't attack because they're caught up in mating.

Back at the lodge, Malcolm coaches Ellie Sattler to prepare for further disaster, having her store water and supplies. He begins ranting about the inadequacies of Jurassic Park, technical expertise, and modern scientific thought.

Chapter 46: Tyrannosaur

Arnold calls Muldoon and Gennaro to let them know where the T. rex is. As Muldoon drives there, he coaches Gennaro on how to prep the tranquilizer gun. When they get to the T. rex, Muldoon shoots. The T. rex charges, and Muldoon shoots again. There's no effect from either shot. They escape in the Jeep.

The river carries Grant and the kids over a waterfall. Grant searches for Lex, who can't swim, and sees the T. rex with her life vest. He pulls her out of the water, and leads the kids behind the waterfall. There he finds equipment, and a door. He goes inside alone to explore, and finds an electric car. He also surprises and tranquilizes a young velociraptor. Beyond the closed door, the T. rex tries to sniff out the kids. It wraps its tongue around Tim Murphy and starts pulling the boy to his death. Then the tongue goes limp and the dinosaur goes away.

Chapter 47: Control

Arnold and the others in the control room see the T. rex crumple to the ground, sedated. They start to celebrate, but Gennaro notices a warning on a computer screen indicating the auxiliary power is low. Arnold learns that when he restarted the park systems, they were running on auxiliary power. Power begins shutting down throughout the park. This includes the electric fences, which means the raptors are out. Muldoon takes operational control, telling people where to go as they work to get power back on. Arnold goes to the maintenance shed to restart the power. He's cornered by three raptors outside the building. Muldoon and Gennaro come to his rescue. Muldoon blows one raptor up with a rocket. Arnold runs for the shed, and the raptors run at Muldoon and Gennaro. When the men split up, the raptors chase Muldoon. Muldoon climbs into a pipe and kills one raptor. Once Arnold is inside, he sees a raptor. He tries to sneak away, but the dinosaur kills him. When Gennaro realizes Arnold should have finished turning the power on by now, he goes into the shed to help Arnold, but fails to start the power because of the raptor.

Sattler, Malcolm, and Hammond monitor the chaos in the park on the radio while Sattler tends to Malcolm's injuries.

Analysis

On the plot level, Chapter 44 emphasizes a race against time, or between two opposing searches: will Robert Muldoon find weapons and the T. rex before the T. rex finds Alan Grant and the kids? This chapter moves both sides of the competition forward one stage: Muldoon finds the rocket launcher, but Grant continues to hear the T. rex following them.

Chapter 44 also underscores a stripping away of the trappings of civilization. First they lost power, then radio contact with the outside world. Now, as Donald Gennaro and Muldoon leave Dennis Nedry's body to scavengers, they are also leaving aside older elements of civilization, like respect for fellow humans and caring for the dead. Leaving Nedry for the compys to chew on is also a further punishment: even after he's dead, the villain's body is desecrated.

When she arrives in Jurassic Park, Lex Murphy is caught up in baseball. She has a ball and glove, and talks Ed Regis into throwing the ball with her. When the T. rex throws the car they're in, she loses the baseball. In Chapter 45 Lex loses her glove, too. This is a minor element of characterization, but one Michael Crichton applies skillfully: as she lost her mature language skills after the T. rex attack, she loses the trappings of her hobby here. This theme park is proving to be surprisingly hard on games and fun.

Also in Chapter 45, Malcolm's conversation with Ellie Sattler is one of the most thematically important exchanges in the novel. He starts by denouncing Jurassic Park, which is understandable for a man writhing in pain because a T. rex chomped on him. He also rants about the limited nature of technical expertise, which he calls "thintelligence." Strikingly, though, he continues to critique all modern science, criticizing its general short-sightedness, and its motivations and methods in particular. This comes after an argument via radio with John Arnold about the park's sensor system. These seem to be two different topics, but they actually align almost perfectly. Arnold accepts a motion sensor system covering 92 percent of the park as good enough; Malcolm calls it "inadequate" and points out specific gaps in the system's coverage.

While humans have evaded the dinosaurs before, getting away through guile or luck, Chapter 46 shows humans playing an active, heroic role. Muldoon stands up like a big game hunter on safari and shoots a T. rex. Grant pulls Lex, who can't swim, from the water. This is where the novel changes feel a bit, showing the heroes in a very active light.

The brief and amusing threat sequence with Tim seems designed to appeal to a younger audience: the T. rex's tongue of death. This shows Crichton's experience as a filmmaker, and his ability to find novelty in a very old trope.

The novels Crichton wrote for quick cash while still in medical school were known as "potboilers": pulpy books written for the thrill of the ride, rather than any deep meaning or artistry. In Chapter 47 Crichton calls on his early expertise for a wildly dramatic ending to the fifth iteration. He includes daring rescues, killing dinosaurs with explosives, narrow escapes, and a dinosaur murdering a human in close quarters.

What keeps all this activity in Chapter 47 from devolving into a simple adventure story is Malcolm's commentary. While the raptors are attacking the core group, Malcolm explains to Sattler what the experience means. Malcolm argues that they're "witnessing the end of the scientific era," and the end of civilization as we know it. This juxtaposition adds great thematic power to the raptor attack. Malcolm talks about the speed of scientific breakthroughs; the raptors are both physically and mentally quick. Malcolm avows that part of the threat of the new age is that genetic power can be distributed, found, and used everywhere: the raptors are all over the park (and, as the Epilogue shows, beyond).

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