I fear even the national geographic society should do its homework


Colossal Squid
Staff member
Moderator (Staff)
Oct 19, 2003
Just looked at their tusoteuthis: I can (sort of) live with the eyes, but they really made a complete mess of the buccal area, and I think "why?"... Given the budgets for this sort of work, it's beyond me why they didn't get their most basic facts in order. When you are rendering an extinct animal from scratch, you'd think you'd be bothered?

Ah well, musn't grumble, the movie in its entirety looks an absolutely brilliant effort :biggrin2:

PS: The link takes you to the main page only, the tusoteuthis clip is found when doing a site search
Even BBC and National Geographic are often far away of being scientifically accurate. Just look at the Walking with...-documentations, there are a lot of mistakes too, even in the cases of this which are clearly known by fossils (for example the tooth shape of Basilosaurus...okay, I start again to enter nerdy territory).
I have a sneaky feeling that the Monterey Bay Aquarium's giant squid toy was used as a reference model for Tusoteuthis. Looking at pics of both, shapes and proportions are a match, and the tail and fins are almost identical. I don't have the toy, but I'd guess that the beak and buccal are vaguely molded. Could explain why the Ntl Geo squid looks wonky.

If (a big if) Tusoteuthis was truly a vampyromorph as it has been described, it probably wouldn't have had the two siezing tentacles either. Apparantly there is no evidence that any fossil vampyromorph, as far as I know, had these. As it was a much shallower water animal than Archi, maybe it could have been depicted as capable of colour change, as opposed to the unimaginative dark crimson.

As Clem suggests, it just looks like an Archi model was scanned. Ultimately, I suppose no-one can really say the model is wrong, just rather conservative in its depiction.
Hmmm...just watched the little video again. I see what you mean. I have not seen the film but from the clips the animation look cartoon-like and far inferior to the BBCs Walking With..series which is a real pity. The giant nautiloid in that episode with Nigel Marven really knocks this Tusoteuthis into a cocked hat, and that was three or four years ago now.

Oh, here's the NG Tuso link: http://www.nationalgeographic.com/seamonsters/timeline/index.html#tusoteuthis

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