“Prehistoric Hockey”, an absolutely batcrap insane cartoon in which a Canucks’ blowout at the hands of the Calgary Flames is prevented thanks to the arrival of a hockey-playing dinosaur, has taken the Internet by storm. By storm, I say!
The video is the year-end animation project of a grade 11 student, who posted it to the Canucks subreddit a few days back, and thank goodness, because this thing deserves to be seen. It is, dare I say, a must-watch. What it’s not, however, is a must-understand, because it seems downright impossible to comprehend. All we know is that, if there’s any justice in the world, the kid who made it got an A+++++++++, like Ralphie in The Christmas Story:
Watch and marvel. And then we have some questions.
Okay, once you’ve had time to process the strangeness of what you just saw, let’s take a moment to ask some pertinent questions about it.
1. When is this supposed to have taken place?
It’s a 6-1 loss to the Calgary Flames that clearly lingers in the mind of the animator, who I presume is a Canucks fan. That brings to mind Trevor Linden’s final game as a Canuck on April 5, 2008, and it’s a very Canuck fan thing to constantly talk about things in which Trevor Linden is or was doing. The appearances of Olli Jokinen and Miikka Kiprusoff, now former Flames, the both of them, also suggests that, yes, it’s set four years ago.
But there are two problems with that: first, the game is taking place at the Calgary Saddledome, and Linden’s last game was a home game. Second, Zack Kassian is in the video, which seems to ground it in a more recent time. He didn’t play for the Canucks in 2008. Continuity error!
Granted, I guess it’s probably a bit strange to harp on the continuity of a video in which a talking tyrannosaurus rex rises from the earth to score 90 goals for the Canucks.
2. What the heck is going on with the guy who grows an out-of-control rage-beard?
At first it’s just a normal beard, but after hanging his head, presumably at the Flames’ 6-1 goal, then looking up at the JumboTron to watch the score change, this Canuck goes absolutely mental. In a flash, the beard that once wrapped around his mouth covers his entire body, like he just applied too much peanut butter solution.
That is not a normal expression of anger and I worry about anyone who thinks it is.
3. If playing badly summons a t-rex, which didn’t the Canucks summon way more t-rexes this year?
I mean, really. If it’s possible for the Canucks to play so poorly the universe suddenly spits out a dinosaur to save them, this probably should have happened a few times during the 2013-14 campaign. Seriously, this should have been a common occurrence every time the Canucks played the Anaheim Ducks. But no. We didn’t get a single dinosaur.
4. What the heck?
The animator seems to think a large segment of Flames fans are weird old farmers who wear straw hats and overalls to games. He is correct.
He’s got Calgary nailed all across the board, actually. The establishing scene with the Calgary skyline and an oil geyser exploding just behind it is spot-on.
5. Can Zack Kassian read a dinosaur’s mind?
Apparently. When the t-rex wanders into the building — by way of the tunnel, somehow — Miikka Kiprusoff is nonplussed, as one would be. It’s not every day a dinosaur attends an NHL game. In fact, dinosaurs have attended as many NHL games as Barack Obama has. It’s pretty strange to see one in the building, let alone at ice level, demanding to get in the game.
And yet Kassian knows exactly what’s going on. Before anything else happens, he and the dinosaur share a knowing glance, and then a nod of silent approval, as though they go way back. They probably do. Kassian is basically a caveman that’s travelled through time to the present, and according to the very reliable Answers in Genesis, that means Kassian probably rode this t-rex at some point.
6. Would John Tortorella or Alain Vigneault actually have let this dinosaur take over the game?
I’m not sure which of the two most recent Canucks’ coaches this is supposed to be, but either way, one thing is for sure: no t-rex is walking onto a Tortorella of Vigneault-coached team and getting the icetime necessary to score 90 goals. Not until they’ve proven they can play a disciplined two-way game.
The dinosaur clearly isn’t ready for this kind of responsibility. He throws one of the Flames into space — that’s undisciplined.
7. Why does the dinosaur deem it necessary to tell the referee he was just on the toilet?
Seems like an overshare. Then again, Roberto Luongo got a lot of mileage out of talking about his bowel movements, so maybe the t-rex is just taking a page from his favourite player.
8. Could a tyrannosaurus rex even use a hockey stick?
Probably not. As ferocious a beast as it was, the t-rex was equipped with tiny, almost vestigial arms. They were still quite strong and capable of gripping and strangling tiny animals, so the dinosaur could definitely hold the stick. But t-rexes could only swing across an angle of about 45 degrees, so his shot would be a muffin.Maybe he scored mostly on tip-ins?
That’s what this screengrab seems to indicate:
9. What would happen if you chirped a t-rex during a hockey game?
The animator explores this question in-depth, as Olli Jokinen decides to try a little gamesmanship after the Canucks take an 85-goal lead. “Hey t-rex,” he says, “Or should I say… get wrecked?”
A bold chirp. But a foolhardy one as well, as the linesman, Kassian and the t-rex all drop their jaws, either at the audacity of the burn, or the fact that it’s so, so weak:
They all appear to be thinking the same thing: “Why — why – would you chirp a tyrannosaurus rex?” I mean, sure, you need to set the tone for the next game, but getting eviscerated by one of nature’s most efficient killing machines is a poor way to go about it.
10. Wouldn’t the NHLPA appeal a 65 million year suspension?
Once a suspension reaches six games or more, the NHLPA can appeal, and they probably would. 65 million years seems harsh. My guess: unless it was to Matt Cooke or Raffi Torres, this one is contested.
Bonus 11th question! Is this the weirdest Canucks video ever?