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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

Land of the Lost: Baby Sitter
"Baby Sitter"
Written by Bill Keenan
Directed by Gordon Wiles
Original airdate: November
8, 1975

The Zarn conducts “research” on Holly and Cha-ka.

Read the complete story summary by Nels Olsen

Didja Notice?

Holly remarks on having to put up with her brother for 12 years. This confirms Holly's age as 12, as stated by her father earlier in "The Zarn".

It seems that it was Will's thoughts, while he was teasing Holly about Zarn showing up unexpectedly, that prompted Zarn to do exactly that.

What is this strange tool (shaped kind of like a giant key) Zarn is using? He seems to be a distance away from his broken starship, so he doesn't seem to be repairing it. He appears to be poking it into the ground and then twisting and levering it around. I would guess this scene was just not well-aligned between actor and blue-screen background and it is intended to show Zarn working on fixing his ship.
Zarn's light ship

It's interesting to note that Zarn comments (to Grumpy) that "with another million years of evolution you'll turn into a bird." At the time this episode was written and filmed (circa 1975), the idea that dinosaurs were closely related to birds was not a popular one, only in recent years becoming almost universally accepted by scientists. The depiction of dinosaurs in popular fiction at the time, including in Land of the Lost, is that they were slow and ponderous due to their supposed cold-blooded, reptilian nature; it's odd that LOTL depicts them this way and yet Zarn makes the comment about dinosaurs evolving into (quick, warm-blooded) birds.

It's amusing to see Cha-ka's frustration with Holly's attempt to teach him manners. She scolds him for not eating his salad with a knife and fork and then scolds him for not picking up bread with his hands. Confusing to a primitive little Paku. And another amusing moment occurs at 9:08 on the DVD: when Holly looks the other way, Cha-ka quickly grabs a piece of salad with his hand and shoves it in his mouth!

Holly seems to be a novice seamstress at best. The dress she is making for herself is completely straight, no figure to the form of the garment.

It seems odd that Ta would laugh at the sight of Cha-ka in Holly's dress. He shouldn't have any distinction between male and female modes of human dress. Unless it's just naturally hilarious that a Paku would wear any clothing?

Holly reveals that she and her family once lived in Wyoming.

Zarn refers to Ta as the alpha Pakuni. Doesn't he mean alpha Paku?

The Pakuni apparently call someone an iguana to imply they are cowardly, the way we would call them chicken.

When we are shown the back of Zarn's head on screen, doesn't it look the same shape as the front? It's hard to tell for sure, but he seems to have a "face" on both sides! In the scene below, Zarn is speaking to Holly, yet the back of his head looks more like the front shape of a head.
Holly and Zarn

At 23:51 on the DVD, it sounds like some dialog was cut. As a beat-up Cha-ka walks into the cave, you can just barely hear something that sounds like Spencer Milligan saying "Oh, my God."

I like how the title of the episode, "Baby Sitter", has multiple associations within the story. Firstly it's used in the concept of Holly not wanting to be baby-sat; secondly, in Rick suggesting Cha-ka as a sort of baby-sitter for her; thirdly as Holly being the baby-sitter to Cha-ka who is seeking safety from the bullying Ta; and fourthly as Zarn "baby-sitting" Holly, Cha-ka and Ta with his pranks/research.

Unanswered Questions

Was Zarn really doing research as he claims? Or just amusing himself with pranks? If research, why on Holly? What are his aims? 

Pakuni translations
Time on DVD Pakuni English
7:07 Ta says, "Ye ba abumisa. Ye bako onam." "You come childish one. You bring food."
7:12 Cha-ka says, "Anu. Aguga onam me." "No. This food is mine."
7:16 Ta says, "Fusachi!" "Quickly!"
7:24 Ta says, "Cha-ka! Fusachi!" "Cha-ka! Quickly!"
7:20 Cha-ka says, "Me nanda! Me nanda! "I'm sorry! I'm sorry!"
7:34 Ta says, "Ye toshi misa. Ye ba ku. Ye! Ye! Ye! Ye!" "You (toshi) me. You come back. You! You! You! You!" "Toshi" is not in any known glossary.
7:59 Cha-ka says, "Amura? Amura?" "Friend? Friend?"
8:07 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka pira!" "Cha-ka danger!"
8:12 Holly says, "Sa efi pa?" "What happened?"
8:13 Cha-ka says, "Ta che me!" "Ta chase me!"
8:16 Holly says, "Sa opari?" "Why?"
8:18 Cha-ka says, "Ye ko re Cha-ka? Eh?" "You save Cha-ka? Eh?" "Eh" is unknown, but presumably a superlative to enhance the implicit answer to the question (yes, she will save him).
8:24 Cha-ka says, "Ego aguga. Eh?" "Stay here. Eh?" "Eh" is unknown, but presumably a superlative to enhance the implicit answer to the question (yes, he can stay).
8:34 Holly says, "wuye". fork
9:15 Holly says, "Oje wocasa." "Strange noise."
9:18 Cha-ka says, "Oje wocasa? Eh?" "Strange noise." "Eh" is unknown, but presumably a superlative to enhance the implicit answer to the question (yes, it was a strange noise).
9:24 Cha-ka says, "Me un sisu." "I did not hear."
9:39 Cha-ka says, "Sa ego meni ko ba ego gani?" "Where do we take (gani)?" "Gani" is unknown; in the context it may mean dishes/plates/bowls.
9:49 Holly says, "Om osu." osu=water, "om" is unknown.
9:51 Cha-ka says, "Osu?" "Water?"
10:08 Holly says, "Pakuni after ani dinda sa efi meni shi?" "After eating what do Pakuni do?" Approximate translation; "ani" and "shi" are unknown. Notice that Holly uses the English word "after"; she must not know the Pakuni word for it.
10:15 Cha-ka says, "A meni dinda a meni doru." "After we eat we (doru)." Approximate translation; presuming "a" means "after". "Doru" is unknown.
10:26 Holly says, "Wachi a un wachi." I am unable to translate this sentence. But Holly implies it means something like "use it again."
10:29 Cha-ka says, "Wachi a un wachi?" I am unable to translate this sentence. But Holly implies it means something like "use it again."
10:50 Cha-ka says, "Oganza...oganza!" "Magic...magic!"
10:59 Cha-ka says, "oganza" magic
11:14 Cha-ka says, "Eh? Sa?" "Eh? What?"
11:38 Holly says, "Sa efi ye mika ego aguga?" "What do you want here?"
11:42 Ta says, "Cha-ka! Ta mika Cha-ka!" "Cha-ka! Ta want Cha-ka!"
11:47 Holly says, "Sa opari?" "Why?"
11:49 Ta says, "Ta aboma gosa. Ta ko ku Cha-ka." "Ta is fierce leader. Ta will go with Cha-ka."
11:53 Holly says, "Aboma gosa?" "Fierce leader?"
12:17 Holly says, "Ye chi wu?" "You see that?"
12:41 Cha-ka says, "Me un pu." "I don't understand."
12:49 Holly says, "Me nanda." "I'm sorry."
12:52 Ta says, "Cha-ka! Ye ba ku Ta." "Cha-ka! You come go with Ta."
12:56 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka kun, a kun Ta. Kun!" "Cha-ka fight, fight with Ta. Fight!"
13:07 Ta says, "Cha-ka dong ku asuka pakusa." I am unable to translate this sentence. Ku=go, "dong", "asuka" and "pakusa" are unknown. Holly translates this as meaning "Cha-ka will have to go home sooner or later."
13:15 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka oo ope bisa." "Cha-ka (oo) big danger." "Oo" is not in any known glossary.
13:17 Holly says, "Ope bisa?" "Big danger?"
13:30 Holly says, "Cha-ka dong kun Ta." "Cha-ka must fight Ta."
13:32 Cha-ka says, "Un kun Cha-ka Ta." "Cha-ka not fight Ta."
13:39 Holly says, "Bimichi." "Manly."
13:40 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka bimichisa un." "Cha-ka not very manly."
14:05 Holly says, "Sa otam ye dura onam Ta." "When you threw food at Ta."
14:07 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka un dura onam Ta." "Cha-ka not throw food at Ta."
14:12 Holly says, "Sa Paku?" "Who?"
14:14 Cha-ka says, "Oganza." "Magic."
14:25 Cha-ka says, "oganza" "magic"
14:30 Cha-ka says, "Nooo...nooo oganza?" " magic?"
14:37 Cha-ka says, "Anu! Anu, Ari! Ye un ku!" "No! No, Holly! You not go!"
18:22 Ta says, "Cha-ka! A ba kun Ta!" "Cha-ka! Come fight Ta!"
18:30 Ta says, "Cha-ka dong ke asuka pakusa. Cha-ka dong kun. Cha-ka aganka." "Cha-ka must go home. Cha-ka must fight. Cha-ka iguana." Holly translated the first sentence for us earlier; "asuka" and "pakusa" are unknown. Calling someone an iguana seems to be the Pakuni way of calling them chicken.
18:38 Cha-ka says, "Aganka? Eh?" "Iguana?" "Eh" is unknown, but presumably a superlative to enhance the implicit answer to the question (Cha-ka is an iguana).
18:48 Holly says "bimichisa" "very manly". Holly seems to think that bimichisa means cowardly, but that would only be true when modified by "un" (not) as at 13:40.
19:00 Holly says, "Cha-ka, ye kun Ta. Ye ye kun Ta." "Cha-ka, you fight Ta. You you fight Ta." I'm not sure why Holly repeats "you" in the second sentence; maybe that is a Pakuni method of stressing a word in a sentence.
19:04 Cha-ka says, "Me ma mika kun Ta?" "I give fight to Ta?"
19:19 Ta says, "Cha-ka aganka!" "Cha-ka iguana!"
19:34 Holly says, "Ye bimichi." "You are manly."
19:36 Cha-ka says, "Bimichi? Bimichi. Cha-ka bimichi. Bimichi. Bimichi." "Manly? Manly. Cha-ka manly. Manly. Manly."
19:53 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka bimichi." "Cha-ka manly."
20:02 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka bimichi." "Cha-ka manly."
20:11 Holly says, "Ye bimichi." "You are manly."
20:13 Cha-ka says, "Bimichi?" "Manly?"
20:26 Holly says, "Cha-ka ye kun! Ye kun!" "Cha-ka you fight! You fight!"
20:55 Holly says, "Ye abimi, abimi bisa." "You are a man, a big man."
20:59 Cha-ka says, "Me abimi? Cha-ka abimi bisa!" "I am a man? Cha-ka is a big man!"
21:27 Holly says, "Cha-ka bu ku asuka pakusa." "Cha-ka you can go home."
21:30 Cha-ka says, "Cha-ka ko ku. Me ko ku. Ye ku wesachi." "Cha-ka will go. I will go. You go well."
23:06 Cha-ka says, "Me chompeen." "I am champion." Notice that Cha-ka has adopted the use of the English word "champion" from Holly.
23:49 Cha-ka says, "Amurani? Cha-ka ba ego aguga?" "Friends? Cha-ka come here?"
23:54 Holly says, "Sa efi pong?" "What happened?"

Memorable Dialog

prom's been called off.wav
you want me to invite Cha-ka.wav
that's insulting.wav
my own cave.wav
women's lib.wav
swallow your gum.wav
funny feeling.wav
real pussycat.wav
do me a favor.wav
can of snakes.wav
wrecking his starship.wav
regress a thousand years.wav
turn into a bird.wav
too primitive.wav
Ta laughs.wav
Mister Zarn.wav
degree of cunning.wav
alpha Pakuni.wav
Cha-ka the great.wav
whatever you are.wav
you wouldn't dare.wav
it's painful.wav
research on you.wav
the bigger they are.wav
the harder they hit.wav

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