Oh, for the life of a Trail…

Vacation!  That’s right!  Enter Dirty Dyer!!  That has to be the plan…


Hopefully we wrap up this little Lost Forest turned Circus interlude…  With the laconic and dour Jim returned (battered but not bowed,) Marlin smiling despite all the paperwork he’ll have to complete to account for the totaled Jeep, Warden Dusty looking on in simian fashion, and the fez and vest sporting Ostrich Jockey in the tree getting ready to hurl excrement, Mark explains that he has a “Long Overdue” (read “Well Deserved”) vacation on the docket…  And looks a little disappointed about it?

But wait, has Jim’s Stick grown?


See James Draw…

Draw, James, draw!


Because that’s about all we have going for us these days…  Mr. Allen’s ability to create reasonable representations of animals in action…  Manufactured suspense, lack of continuity and bad punchlines fill out the rest of the program.

How did Marlin get back?  What of his totaled Jeep?  Where is Jim and his pointed stick? And where on earth did the Wardens get that Hippo collar and chain?  And what’s it attached to?  That Hippo would only have to give a small shrug, and whatever is mooring that  would come apart!  We only have to go back to Africa and the Rhino Horn Caper to see this Hippo’s cousin, whom (which?) Mark dispatches with… wait for it… a flaming log!  But what about Dirty Dyer… Where is he?!

It’s all about you, isn’t it Mark?

But figuratively speaking, I’ve had to deal with a lot of enraged Rhinos in my life…


OK, let’s take stock of the situation…  The Rhino is down, for now… but will awake at some point.  Marlin’s Jeep is overturned and undrivable.  Jim hasn’t been seen since he went into the thicket with his pointed stick.  And all Mark can say is “I’ll meet you two back at camp?”  What an ASS!  Seriously.  So you can what?  Tell your version of the lusty tale without the chance of anyone stepping on your glory?!

But how nice to include just a spec of color in the first frame!  For those of us living in the BOLD BORTH, where we live a constant reminder to never take spring and summer for granted, we appreciate any hint that bulbs actually flower!

Swamp Thing?

As Marlin emerges from the smoldering wreck that was the Zoo-Jeep, his silhouette is vaguely reminiscent of that early 80’s classic Swamp Thing…  And Mark, why are you thinking to yourself, but then talking out loud?  Are we back to the Trail standard of the vocalized inner monologue?


But let’s get back to the REAL question:  What use would a circus have with a Rhinoceros?  They don’t socialize particularly well, and I’d be hard pressed to figure out what kind of “act” might involve one…  And in the circus, every mouth to feed has to to earn its keep, right?  I mean, this guy (or gal) would eat body weights in food-stock, and that costs money!  Not to mention just taking up space- like an entire train-car’s worth!  And where would one find or post for a Rhino-Wrangler? Monster.com?

So as Cherry tools around in her Escalade, Doc sips his coffee and Rusty still wonders where his apple infused flapjacks are, we are left to boggle at the action that just transpired and is the new norm in Mark Trail…  Even in Lost Forest, there’s nary a dull moment!

The Beast! x2!

What chance would a Zebra have against a Rhino, anyway?  Hopefully they have Farmers Insurance!  Seen it, covered it…


With wheels, struts, tie rods and other linkage flying about, there’s only one man who can save us now!!  It’s Mighty Mark!!


Boy, Mark, that’s a lot to be processing inside your head all at once…  you even managed to fit some care and concern for your fellow man in there… Weird.

Again with the Beast Reference!

Jim Jim is my name and spanking Rhinos is my game…  Ha!!



I think someone in the comments brought up the fact that these tranquilizer darts are exactly fast-acting… This Rhino, for instance, even if Mark was able to get a shot off and place the dart perfectly, would be able to take out an entire village before it was slowed down…  So yes, Marlin, you and your Jeep are in a bad spot… Prepare to be launched!!

For pure comic relief check out the effects on Ace Ventura, or for a demonstration of what comes up when one googles “tranquilizing a rhino” see this.

Never underestimate a man with a pointed stick…

As we peer through the windscreen at Mark and Marlin, the plot is fixing to proof…  We see Sidekick Jim (Sideshow Bob?) walking into the thicket armed with nothing more than his wooden poker.


Besides, Mark, I don’t think Marlin is sending Jim anywhere…  I think that Jim is a master of his own free will and destiny…  he chooses to go where Marlin goes and lives by simple rules…  Say little, wear khaki, carry a pointed stick.

Rhino in the thicket, whataya’ gon’ do?

These two zoo guys really are a mixed bag, aren’t they?


And Mark, it’s a jeep, not a car… jeez….. But let’s not lose hope, for as Marlin reminds us, they are professionals!


So now comes the pièce de résistance… The moment of moments… when the otherwise unassuming take center stage and school us all!!  Whatever that is, and whatever it has to do with the pointed stick, I guess we’ll find out in the coming installments!

How Far the Mighty have Fallen!!

I guess we wouldn’t have had the chance to notice the Zoo-Jeep until now, but OK, I guess…


And of course poor Jim (Fowler?) immediately takes the back seat, in deference to The Trail.  If Mark’s not driving, then he’s sure a hell riding shotgun…  Unless he’s on Safari and there is a pretty woman involved


So what’s the plan here?  To drive the Rhino to exhaustion?  Pull out another tranq-gun, this one with armor piercing capabilities?

Ah yes, the days of the Television Show… before the world was taken over and the Networks fell under siege to a universe of 5-minute YouTube clips…  When Sunday night meant Wild Kingdom, the Wonderful World of Disney and, if you were lucky (since it was past bedtime) Bonanza!  OK!  Aging myself a bit there…