Jurassic World: Chaos Theory Is A Conspiracy Thriller

(L to R) Paul-Mikél Williams as Darius Bowman, Ryan Potter as Kenji Kon, Raini Rodriguez as Sammy Gutierrez, and Kausar Mohammed as Yasmina 'Yaz' Fadoula in Jurassic World: Chaos Theory: Season 1. Photo credit: NETFLIX © 2024.

Jurassic World: Chaos Theory reunites the Camp Fam by taking it up a notch with the spin-off series playing out as a conspiracy thriller.

To say that the season is not for younger children is not an understatement. I cannot stress this enough. Showrunners Scott Kreamer and Aaron Hammersley decided to age things up. The general idea is that the Camp Cretaceous audience has also grown up with the series. In any event, the tone changes as the characters grow up to ages 18-21. They’re all doing their own things. Not surprisingly, some of the Camp Fam are trying to get as far away from dinosaurs after their previous trauma. I could not blame them especially after suffering traumatic experiences. In fact, I love that the series explores dinosaur-free zones. It’s one of the things that followed in the wake of the Battle of Big Rock and the films never explored this. New audiences can jump into the narrative without having seen the initial series. However, I would still recommend watching for backstory purposes.

The Jurassic World timeline presents an opportunity in and of itself as far as storytelling is concerned. We’re two years after Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom but a few months before Jurassic World: Dominion. The first episode of Camp Cretaceous, much like Jurassic World, took place six years prior. Jurassic World: Dominion shows what the world is looking like on a bigger scale but Jurassic World: Chaos Theory plays out on a smaller and intimate level. There are easter eggs for fans of the films–you’ll just have to watch and see for yourself.

For fans of Camp Cretaceous, neither Jenna Ortega or Ryan Potter return for the spin-off. Kiersten Kelly and Darren Barnet replace them, respectively. It’s understandable that Ortega isn’t returning. Have you seen Jenna’s schedule? She is really keeping busy!

(L to R) Sean Giambrone as Ben Pincus and Paul-Mikél Williams as Darius Bowman in Jurassic World: Chaos Theory: Season 1.
(L to R) Sean Giambrone as Ben Pincus and Paul-Mikél Williams as Darius Bowman in Jurassic World: Chaos Theory: Season 1. Photo credit: NETFLIX © 2024.

It’s a no-brainer that we’re getting an opportunity to reunite with The Nublar Six. Plus, it helps keep the Jurassic World brand alive until the next film in the franchise is released. Anyway, it’s been six years since Camp Cretaceous and of course, dinosaurs are now roaming across the mainland. Not only do they have to deal with dinosaurs once again but people are trying to hurt them. When tragedy strikes close to home with Brooklynn’s death, the Camp Fam reunites and finds themselves in the middle of a conspiracy thriller threatening both dinosaurs and humans. The season deals with similar themes as its predecessor, only the characters are older. How they respond–well, not much has changed. At the end of the day, the story has to be authentic to the characters. Otherwise, it wouldn’t work.

According to the first season’s production notes, Kreamer lists The Parallax View, Three Days of the Condor, and All the President’s Men as jumping off points. In short, anything from Alan J. Pakula is likely an inspiration for the series. But hey, watching the season is what finally got me to watch Three Days of the Condor. It’s a challenge to fit that into a schedule while also prepping for Frank Marshall and Thom Zimny’s new documentary on The Beach Boys.

What I will say is that the season leaves us in a nice place while waiting for the second season. Among its biggest challenges are incorporating dinosaurs into the story in a way that feels organic rather than forced. It feels cinematic despite the fact that the season consists of only ten 22-minute episodes. There’s still LGBTQ representation and just like the real world, the characters have flaws. Oh yeah, Supernatural fans will have their own reasons to smile.

SHOWRUNNERS/EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Scott Kreamer and Aaron Hammersley
DEVELOPED FOR TELEVISION BY: Scott Kreamer, Zack Stentz
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Steven Spielberg, Colin Trevorrow, Frank Marshall
SUPERVISING PRODUCER: Zesung Kang
CAST: Paul-Mikel Williams, Darren Barnet, Raini Rodriguez, Sean Giambrone, Kausar Mohammed, Kiersten Kelly

Netflix launches Jurassic World: Chaos Theory on May 24, 2024. Grade: 4/5

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Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.