Today we’re going to go way back to the year 1988 and a trading card series called Dinosaurs Attack! The series is so beyond awesome that they had to tag on an exclamation point on the end. Dinosaurs Attack! features… wait for it… dinosaurs attacking!
Warning: Some of the cards shown may disturb you if you don’t like completely balls out awesome images of dinosaurs brutally killing people. And remember, these were marketed to children.
When Dinosaurs Attack! came out I was still under the benevolent control of my parents. One thing they were a little more strict on was not letting me see movies that focused too much on violence. Don’t get me wrong, they weren’t the kind of folks who banned toy guns or anything, but they certainly put the clamps down on me seeing films like Predator before I was ready. The Dinosaurs Attack! cards were a way around the ban and some of my first visions of beautiful ultra violence as it featured dinosaurs tearing shit up. Even better, It wasn’t just the usual meat eaters that turn the human race into dino-chow, it was even the god damned plant eaters:
What wasn’t there to love about Dinosaurs Attack! to a young child that both loved dinosaurs and was bereft of violence? My parents never let me own Garbage Pail Kid cards because they were too gross, but they let me have this:
In movies the dog doesn’t usually die. This card helps prove that this isn’t some silly movie, this is war!
If asked why I liked these cards so much, aside from all the ultra-dino violence that I was sure was going to happen in the oncoming dinosaur wars, there were some really neat cards that got my imagination running wild. One that really sticks in my mind was the one where the dinosaur appeared in our time where someone was already standing, creating some crazy melded mess of horror:
This made me afraid to urinate outdoors for years. I was pretty sure that the guy wasn’t urinating when it happened, but I was convinced that’s when I’d become a Siamese twin with a dinosaur.
There wasn’t much of a story besides the fact some meddling scientists accidentally sucked the dinosaurs into our time. It later turns out that the scientists were really pawns used by a wickedly insane dinosaur god (I wish I was making that up). The lead scientist ends up sacrificing himself in order to save mankind. With such a powerful and touching story, I can pretty much say that Dinosaurs Attack! really shaped me into the person I am today.
What really sucked back then is that I had nearly all the cards in the series, I couldn’t find them all before they disappeared from stores. In those days there wasn’t any kind of secondary market that existed especially in rural Wisconsin, so I thought I was left with an incomplete collection for the rest of my nerdy life until a few years later. In the mid-nineties my parents and I were at Mall of America and I found an unopened box of Dinosaurs Attack! cards for ultra cheap. I was ecstatic, because I could finally complete my collection.
As a side note, my Dad tried the gum that came with the cards. By that time the gum had to have been at least seven years old. He quickly regretted his decision.