Many creatures have become extinct throughout earth history, but while different kinds of Stock Dinosaurs
are usually selected for prehistoric settings, there are a variety of other species of extinct animals that come to mind when thinking of pre-history. One of these creatures is the dodo bird, which is kind of the poster-child when someone thinks of extinct birdies.
The dodo was a flightless (and, because of its insular habitat, completely fearless) animal, so the Dutch had no trouble wiping them out eventually. However, their images were recorded in various books about animals, and with their rather goofy-looking appearance, they eventually became a popular animal choice in media of various sorts.
Usually a dodo in media is a comedic, dim bulb whose inability to fly often leads to jokes at their expense. Due to being extinct, they also sometimes appear alongside animals that died out a much longer time ago in pre-historic enviornments. They can sometimes act as Cloudcuckoolanders
or The Fool
. In short, Dodos are never taken seriously. But there are some cases where the trend is averted, or at least subverted, if the dodo isn't entirely stupid or out of their mind that is usually the case.
Please Note: The Dodo in question does not need to be stupid to qualify for this page. Even a reference to the dodo bird is enough.
Examples in Media
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- Douwe Dabbert encounters the last of the dodos in the arctic (It Makes Sense in Context) and spends his next adventure in the Caribbean trying to find the dodo a mate. They eventually find a nest of eggs on a deserted island, so for all we know, dodos might actually still be around.
- Dodo Man, a one-shot Batman villain from the bronze age, had a fixation on natural history as his idiosyncrazy.
- Ice Age has a group of dodos that are preparing for the Ice Age. However, at the point they're introduced they've only gathered three melons, one of which the main trio need to feed the human baby. They end up killing themselves.
- Disney's Alice in Wonderland has The Dodo, who is a Composite Character of the original Dodo, and another character named Pat.
- The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists has Polly, a Dodo bird that acts as the Pirate Captain's Pirate Parrot. She becomes quite important to the film's plot after a scientist recognises her for what she is. Is smarter than most examples though.
- Interestingly, a scenario like that could actually occur. Dodos were sometimes captured from Mauritus by pirates to be sold. Many authors from the time write of captive dodos being seen as sideshow exhibits in London.
- Sesame Street Presents: Follow That Bird has the Dodo family, a Dysfunctional Family of the highest degree whose dissaproval of Big Bird's imaginary friend kickstarts the movie's plot.
- The Dodo in the original Alice in Wonderland novel is an Author Avatar for Lewis Carroll, alongside The White Knight in the second book.
- The Ice-Cream Cone Coot and Other Rare Birds has a creature called a Dollarbill Dodo, which is made from a dollar.
- The Bad Child's Book of Beasts has a poem about the Dodo bird.
- In Howard Waldrop's short story "The Ugly Chickens" a researcher discovers that the dodo survived the extinction of the native population in the form of a flock owned by a farmer in the American backwoods.
- Dodos are Forever by Dick King-Smith is about a family of dodos who are smart enough to see the writing on the wall and attempt to escape their impending extinction.
- In Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, Reg takes Dirk and Richard back in time to see a dodo while explaining to them about the dangers of meddling in history; apparently the dodos only became extinct as a result of a time traveler meddling to save something else.
- In Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Dodos turn out to be magical creatures called Diricawls that possess teleportation magic. Muggles believe the "Dodos" are extinct because the Diricawls started using their powers to hide from humans once they figured out they were being hunted.
- The Neil Innes song "Say You're Sorry Again" proposes a lover's quarrel and refusal to make up as the real reason for the dodo's extinction.
- Dodo Birds themselves couldn't fly, as mentioned, and they also had deadly parasites. They became extinct because Crippling Overspecialisation, having been outcompeted by other species (in particular pigs), due to having no predators (or competition) before those species arrived.
- Interestingly, while the media portrays dodos as skittish fools, in real life they were closer to being Fearless Fools; dodos lived on an island with no predators, so they had no idea that humans and the invasive species they brought with them were dangerous.