Saturday, December 24, 2016
Saturday Morning Cult-TV Blogging: Tarzan, Lord of the Jungle: "Tarzan and the Land of the Giants" (October 30, 1976)
In “Tarzan and the Land of the Giants,” Tarzan and Nakima find strange humanoid footprints in the forest, and follow them into a realm of unusual giants. They soon learn that the city of giants -- in the trees – is controlled by a despot named Odysseus, who rules by fear.
Right now, the people of the city, Zoran, are afraid of a giant albino rhinoceros, or "great beast." Tarzan rescues the rhino from a tar pit, and demonstrates that it is just an animal.
When a storm hits Zoran, the people again succumb to fear, but Tarzan proves to them that their leader is manipulating them. He also helps them to relocate.
This is another intriguing episode of Filmation’s Tarzan, Lord of the Jungle. It starts with Tarzan and Nakima dealing with a drought, and then continues with the unusual discovery of a giant footprint. They follow the trail through a hidden jungle, into a realm where everything is giant. In short order, we see giant ants, giant mushrooms, and the albino rhino, too.
Tarzan’s universe is one of amazing fantasy, but one cannot help but notice that this jungle must be huge! It boasts not only Tarzan’s sanctuary (and the nearby graveyard of elephants), but cities like Zandor, and lost realms of Vikings, alien saucers, and more In weeks ahead, we’ll also see a realm of knights (Nimmr).
In short, it’s one busy jungle. But, I will admit, I am a sucker for “lost world” stories, and I’ve enjoyed each Tarzan story, even if the lost worlds have been saddled with very human/Western moral stories. Tarzan is always our avatar for morality, which he teaches to cities in distress and ruled by despots.
Still, “Tarzan and the Land of the Giants” is a fun story, and another worthy addition to the canon.
Next week: “Tarzan and the Knights of Nimmr.