Jurassic Park Deaths, Ranked By How Much They Had It Coming

A lot of the fun in monster movies is seeing characters mauled, devoured, or suffering some other horrible fate. The resulting concoction of excitement and fright is the type only a horror movie can blend. Filmmakers know this and usually include at least one character whose death you can enjoy, guilt-free. Of course, some innocents and likable characters have to go too; otherwise, there are no stakes. "Jurassic Park" and its sequels use this mixed formula, which in turn begs the question: Just how much do all the characters who ended up as dino dinners deserve their fate?

Before we get to the gory delights and moral sanctity, a preface: This is only going to list the major characters. After all, it's hard to gauge how much nameless background characters deserved a Velociraptor mauling.

Eddie Carr from The Lost World

Oh, Eddie, the unsung, gone-too-soon hero of "The Lost World: Jurassic Park." Played by Richard Schiff, Eddie is the tech guy of Dr. Ian Malcolm's expedition to Isla Sorna. He's also probably the most earnestly heroic member of the group. When Nick Van Owen (Vince Vaughn) makes the dumb decision to bring a young, injured Tyrannosaurus rex to camp, the juvenile's parents come lurking around.

The rest of the team hides in their RV and winds up dangling off a cliff thanks to Papa Rex. Eddie attaches a cable to his car on one end and the trailer on the other, keeping the RV from collapsing and giving the others the opening to escape. Unfortunately, the rexes come back and Eddie's the only chow around. He fails to escape and is torn apart between a T. rex kiss — a nasty way to go, especially for one of the movie's most likable characters.

Robert Muldoon from Jurassic Park

Ever heard the myth of Cassandra? She was an oracle who can predict the future, yet her advice goes unheeded. In "Jurassic Park," that's basically the role of the game warden, Robert Muldoon (Bob Peck). Likely owing to his background as a game hunter, Muldoon is the only one on staff with true understanding and respect for the danger that dinosaurs pose. He advocates destroying the Velociraptors outright thanks to the threat they embody. With how events shake out, it's hard to say he was wrong.

Muldoon is a pragmatist, but with a gallant side; he draws the raptors' attention away from Ellie (Laura Dern). The raptors wind up luring him into a trap, and he reacts just a few seconds too late. The last we see of him is one of the raptors pouncing on him and chewing up his face. Muldoon's death is a testament to the raptors' intelligence, and he accepts it with as much dignity as he can ("Clever girl..."), but in a just world, it would've been him blowing the raptors to kingdom come.

Zara from Jurassic World

The most infamous scene in Colin Trevorrow's "Jurassic World" is the death of a character whose name you probably don't even remember. Zara (Katie McGrath) is the chaperone of Zach (Nick Robinson) and Gray (Ty Simpkins). Once the Indominus rex sets loose the Pteranodons, one of them plucks Zara. After she's dropped in the Moasaurus tank, the Pteranodon attacks her like a bird biting at a flopping fish. Then the Mosasaurus breaches and devours them both.

Clocking in almost a full minute, Zara's death is the longest demise in the "Jurassic" series and the most sadistic. Indeed, Zara's death scene is the most sustained screentime she has in the movie. According to Trevorrow, that was the whole point. Speaking to Empire, the director said, "How can we surprise people? Let's have someone die who just doesn't deserve to die at all." They were even deleted scenes that showed Zara in a more negative light, presumably cut for the sake of the surprise Trevorrow wanted. The director also said he wanted "the most spectacular death scene" because Zara would be the first woman to die in a "Jurassic Park" movie. That's a whole other can of worms others have already unpacked.

Ray Arnold from Jurassic Park

Ray Arnold (Samuel L. Jackson) is the sardonic chief engineer of Jurassic Park; you probably know him as Mister "Hold onto your butts." Arnold is initially against shutting down the park's power grid (to undo Dennis Nedry's hack job) but ultimately complies with Hammond's insistence. Arnold then goes off to restore power and never returns, thanks to some Velociraptors. Ellie discovers his severed arm at the power junction. It's a great jump scare (in a movie filled with them), but it's a shame it had to come at his expense. Arnold's death is him paying for other people's decisions, both Nedry's and Hammond's. And come on, it's Samuel L. Jackson! Who wasn't rooting for him to make it out alive?

Simon Masrani from Jurassic World

Played by the late Irrfan Khan, Masrani is the John Hammond stand-in of "Jurassic World." Masrani set out to make his predecessor's dream come true. Like Hammond, Masrani is a personable man whose only goal is to awe the park's visitor. Also like Hammond, though, Masarani's ambition exceeds his grasp. He authorizes the creation of the Indominus rex, deciding to go one step further in playing god by not just re-creating extinct species, but by making an entirely new, uncontrollable one.

Masrani personally leads the attempt to stop the escaping I. Rex aboard a helicopter, but the dinosaur unleashes a flock of Pteranodon on the chopper. From there, the mission, the helicopter, and Masrani himself all crash and burn. On hand, Masrani's death is mostly a noble one, and he's far from the most nefarious character in the movie. On the other — dude, it was abundantly clear that a dinosaur theme park was a bad idea. This was only a matter of time!

Ajay from The Lost World

Ajay Sidhu (Harvey Jason) is the sidekick of Roland Tembo (Pete Postlethwaite), two big game hunters recruited for InGen's expedition to Isla Sorna. Ajay doesn't get much solo screen time but that he's okay with poaching doesn't speak too highly of his moral fiber. On the other hand, he and Roland are definitely the most competent members of the expedition — well, except in one instance, for which Ajay pays dearly.

While fleeing a T. rex attack, several members of the expedition proceed to dash into a field of tall grass, where Velociraptors lie in wait. Ajay, who knows how predators operate, calls out to the others not to run in the long grass ... then proceeds to follow them in anyway. We don't see his death, but we do hear it. Ajay, my man, you should've listened to your own advice!

The mercenaries from Jurassic Park III

These three will be listed together, for they don't get sufficient characterization to tell them apart. Cooper (John Diehl), Nash (Bruce A. Young), and Udesky (Michael Jeter) are a trio of mercenaries recruited by Paul and Amanda Kirby (William H. Macy and Téa Leoni). They're all killed in quick order once the cast makes it to Isla Sorna. Cooper is the worst, knocking out Alan Grant (Sam Neill) when the good doctor objects to them landing. So, he goes first, devoured by the Spinosaurus. Nash follows him soon after. Udesky, on the other hand, is killed by a pack of Velociraptors, with the dinosaurs using his corpse as bait to lure in the others.

Again, with such thin characterization spread among the three, it's hard to say they had it coming, per se. "Jurassic Park III" seems under the illusion that we care about the Kirby family, so the mercenaries are there for the same reason Red Shirts exist on "Star Trek"; they're disposable "good" characters who can take the fall for the main characters.

In-universe, all three accepted the job to go to the remote island full of man-eating predators. Even for career mercenaries, that's a dangerous, borderline suicidal assignment. In other words, they knew the risks and paid the consequences.

Tie: Peter Ludlow from The Lost World and Eli Mills from Fallen Kingdom

"Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom" may be a sequel to "Jurassic World," but in practice, it's a second adaptation of Michael Crichton's "The Lost World." Both sequels have the same premise: After the failure of the park, the parent company sends an expedition to the dinosaurs' island home to recover them. Thus, the antagonists of both films, Peter Ludlow (Arliss Howard) and Eli Mills (Rafe Spall) will be listed together, because they're the same character. Be honest, are you even 100% sure which one's which?

Both men want to exploit the dinosaurs for profit, and they both get killed by a T. rex they had shipped to the mainland. If I had to compare them, I would say Mills edges out Ludlow slightly in terms of getting what was coming to him. Ludlow just wanted another go at building Jurassic Park, this time in San Diego (an even worse idea than Hammond's in the first film). Mills, on the other hand, was auctioning off the dinosaurs to billionaires, arms dealers, and all other sorts of unsavory characters. Plus, Ludlow had the modicum of courage to actually go to the island himself, whereas Mills stays home and lets his henchmen do all the heavy lifting.

Dieter Stark from The Lost World

Ever since his turn as Gaear Grimsrud in "Fargo," Peter Stormare showing up in a movie is usually bad news. His "Lost World" character, Dieter Stark, is no exception. One of the InGen mercenaries deployed to Isla Sorna, Dieter is at worst a nuisance, but he's far from likable. Early in the film, he harasses the tiny carnivore Compsognathus with a cattle prod, apparently uncaring that tiny predators are still predators.

This comes back to literally bite him when he wanders off from the group to take a leak. A pack of "Compies" stumbles on him and then swarms him, devouring Dieter piece by piece; the scene fulfills Grant's promise from the original, that dinosaurs eat their prey alive. If there's an overarching lesson to "Jurassic Park," it's respect for nature. Dieter had none and paid the price.

Donald Gennaro from Jurassic Park

A "bloodsucking lawyer," Donald Gennaro (Martin Ferrero) has probably the most famous death scene in any "Jurassic Park" movie. Gennaro is part of the assembled tour group, along with Alan, Ellie, Malcolm, Lex, and Tim. The tour gets stuck in front of the T. rex paddock when the park's automation fails. When the theropod of the hour arrives on the scene, Gennaro pulls the mother of all dick moves: abandoning the two children while hiding in the nearby bathroom. In the perfect batch of karma, he's the only one eaten by the T. rex when it collapses the stall. The sight of the dinosaur plucking him from the toilet and wolfing him down is the perfect end for such a slimy character; even in death, Gennaro was walking indignity.

It's doubly fitting because Gennaro had been the one most supportive of Jurassic Park, and only because he saw it as an opportunity to print money. This sets the standard for many subsequent deaths throughout the movies — characters who want to exploit the dinosaurs get eaten by them.

Vic Hoskins from Jurassic World

The freshest idea that "Jurassic World" brought to the series was trained dinosaurs. Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) tenuously leads a pack of Velociraptors. Of course, someone in the cast sees the money-making potential and lets their greed blind their common sense. That someone is Vic Hoskins (Vincent D'Onofrio), who wants to breed the raptors for military use. Of all the bad ideas people have had about dinosaurs in these movies, this is easily the worst. 

Hoskin's plan blows up twice over. First, deploying the raptors against the Indominus rex only results in them turning on Hoskins' security team. Second, when cornered by the raptor named Delta, Hoskins fails to communicate with it and is lethally mauled. The lesson mankind never learns in these movies? Don't try to control that which won't be. Of course, it doesn't seem like anyone involved in running Jurassic World had studied much of the previous films' events, Hoskins very much included.

Ken Wheatley from Fallen Kingdom

These placements have been weighed on immorality, arrogance, and stupidity. The perfect combination manifests in Ken Wheatley (Ted Levine), the leader of the dinosaur retrieval expedition in "Fallen Kingdom." Wheatley has same the temperament and love of animal abuse as Dieter Stark; he collects a tooth from each captured dinosaur as a trophy.

When he comes across the caged Indoraptor, Wheatley just can't help himself. He shoots the hybrid dinosaur with two tranquilizer darts, then decides to enter its cage so he can get a tooth. The Indoraptor uses its tail to discretely close the door behind Wheatley and then attacks him. Wheatley's death was entirely preventable had he reined in his tooth-pulling hobby and exercised the slightest bit of caution, but he didn't. Considering how callous a man he'd proven to be, including backstabbing our heroes not 10 minutes after his introduction, it's hard to feel sad.

Dennis Nedry from Jurassic Park

Hello, Nedry. The catalyst of all the problems and death in "Jurassic Park" is Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight), the disgruntled programmer who sabotages the automation system he built. Recruited by rival company BioSyn, Nedry's plan is to steal dinosaur embryos and smuggle them off Isla Nublar. A tropical storm — again, nature is uncontrollable — impedes his plan, first by forcing him to expedite it and then blocking his path to escape when he has to drive through the downpour.

After crashing his car, Nedry meets a Dilophosaurus, free from its pen due to his disabling of security systems. Nedry makes the big mistake of assuming it's harmless, first trying to ward it off with a game of catch. The dinosaur spits venom in Nedry's eyes, blinding him, then when he makes it back into his car, he finds out he has a new passenger. Like many deaths in the series, the gory details are left to our imagination, but the sound of Nedry being devoured is more than enough.

Considering the deaths of Muldoon, Arnold, and Gennaro are on Nedry (well, we can forgive him for that last one), it's fitting that he had the most gruesome demise of all in "Jurassic Park."