Advertising For [Jurassic World] and [Jurassic Park]

I am intrigued by the Jurassic World additions to the Jurassic Park trilogy because of the unaddressed but very present notion that after the terrible events of Jurassic Park, where people were eaten, children were lost, and a T-Rex ravaged suburban America, not only did a greedy business corporation decide that a real life dinosaur theme park was still a good idea, but patrons of the park thought it was as well.

There are a few ways this could have developed, and I am wondering which one is most likely.

The first option isn’t super interesting but would be the cleanest explanation. Is it possible that after a giant T-Rex rampaged through the streets of San Diego, the government was able to spin the story, or hush it up?

This theory would create the desired effect, i.e. people don’t worry about the tragedies of the original Jurassic Park theme park because they are unaware of them. But the chances of a T-Rex getting loose in an American city and that not being on every news channel in the world are slim to none. 

However, it does seem far more likely that the government was able to spin the story in a way that prevented it from looking bad on them and InGen and therefore unwittingly preserving the Park for resurrection someday. 

On its face, that notion seems absurd. But just think of some of our modern-day spin tactics and apply them to this particular storyline. They seem to fit quite nicely into a defense for why a T-rex destroyed San Diego…

  1. China did it. It’s the China-Rex.
  2. That didn’t actually happen. That was a robot. It was CGI.
  3. It only killed 32 people. Car crashes kill 102 people every day.
  4. We don’t know what that was. There is conflicting reports on the incident. There is no way to know.

Seems much more feasible, now, doesn’t it?

But let’s say that the attack of a dinosaur is outside of even government and media’s ability to obfuscate. Public opinion might still swing back into the favor of a theme park for dinosaurs, because as bad as the initial park went, and as awful as a T-rex in America was, American’s believe in second chances. We bring ourselves up by the bootstraps and learn from our mistakes. I could easily see Americans arguing that there is no way that the events of 22 years ago could happen a second time. 

I mean really, how likely is it, that a group of greedy, blood sucking businessmen and women would reopen a dinosaur park, without fixing the errors of a bygone generation? Huh? What idiot government would sanction this project without the utmost care and security after the tragedies that happened only a little over two decades ago? That would be absurd! Negligence of the ‘nth’ degree! And no one would believe it possible.

As rooted in reality as these possibilities seem, they are still a stretch. News stories get spun, but this particular story seems like an unlikely candidate for the spin cycle. And Americans do love second chances, but this seems like a damnable offense. 

Maybe we are assessing it from the wrong angle. Maybe Jurassic World was able to get up and running not because of how public opinion shifted in their favor, but by how they shifted public opinion in their own favor.

With the amount of money, the creators of Jurassic World have shown they have, it is not hard to imagine that they have a killer advertising team. And they would need one. After this same idea crashed, burned, and killed human beings, advertising’s top minds would need to put their best ideas forward in order to win the public’s trust and dollar bills. I could easily see a strong TV ad campaign promising a roaring good time *cue image of T-Rex screaming on a San Diego street*. 

Or maybe they went the Fyre festival route and brought in a bunch of beautiful Instagram influencers and had them pose with baby Velociraptors, and swim in teeny bikinis with a Spinosaurus. They could flood every Insta-story with influencers documenting their Jurassic themed hotel rooms and tours in gyrospheres. They could post ‘did you know’ polls about the dinosaur facts they learned (Did You Know that the longest dinosaur was the Argentinosaurus, which measured over 40 meters long, as long as four fire engines!) and give behind the scenes peaks into the genetic labs they were given exclusive access to. As long as none of said influencers were consumed by the tourist attractions, I would imagine that people would be lining up to spend their money like they were going to pet baby tigers at Joe Exotic’s G.W. zoo.

But maybe I am overthinking this whole process. Because, at the end of the day, if I heard- not even saw an advertisement- if I merely heard people mention that there was a place that genetically recreated dinosaurs, I would pay just about any amount of money that wouldn’t bankrupt me in order to go see them. And if I knew that that park had gone terribly wrong, killed people, let dinosaurs loose in America, only to reopen and offer the same thing, with the same problems, and the same flawed backbone of greed and narcissism, I would still pay any amount of money I could in order to go. Because dinosaurs are that awesome, and the experience of seeing one in person would outweigh just about any consequence. Except for maybe what happened to Zara, that’s a little intense… 

It’s why we all continue to go to these films even though the quality after the original has been… unsteady. We are feeding a need to see dinosaurs. We share the desire of all those tourists, who block out the bad in order to witness the spectacular. No trickery needed.

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