The “Primal” animated series had creator Genndy Tartakovsky (“Samurai Jack,” “Dexter’s Laboratory”) bringing a visceral, vicious, and visually stunning story to Adult Swim. The series follows a Neanderthal and a Tyrannosaurus, both struggling to survive in a dangerous world after the sudden loss of their families. Whether it’s other deadly dinosaurs and gnarled creatures or a terrifying mystical cult, there are endless dangers for the characters nicknamed Spear and Fang. But you’ll probably never hear those names spoken on the show, because it’s a dialogue-free show filled with primal sounds and an amazing score.
After the first season ends with Spear and Fang meeting a new character, who could change the whole dynamic of the series, “Primal” picks up where it left off, and it’s deadlier than ever. In fact, the battles Spear and Fang get into in the upcoming second season have taken things to a whole new level – so much so that they almost “broke the studio”, according to Tartakovsky himself.
If you’d rather avoid knowing the details of the first two episodes of “Primal” Season 2, then this is your last chance to turn away.
A whole new world
Season 2 of “Primal” opens by following Spear and Fang as they go in search of Mira (Laetitia Eido-Mollon), the enslaved Homo sapien who was abducted in the season one finale and led Spear to utter his name as her first line of dialogue. In their pursuit, Spear and Fang take to the sea, where many new adventures and dangers await them. The two encounter a sea turtle and a shark, each proving threatening in their own way. As Tartakovsky reminded IndieWire:
“This all [first] the episode is themed around entering a new world so in the middle there’s more of this metaphysical and existential type of going through the night [on the raft at sea]. And then they find themselves in a storm and get attacked by a shark. It was my first storyboard after doing the first season, and we knew what to focus on more confidently because the relationship [between Spear and Fang] was working.”
“I would never have tried this before”
The relationship between Spear and Fang is the driving force behind “Primal.” What started as an unlikely alliance turned into a trusting friendship. With this strong momentum, Tartakovsky was able to focus on escalating drama and action, especially regarding the perils that awaited them at every turn. Tartakovsky identified one particular challenge the studio had at the start of this season:
“The biggest problem was the storm and the shark hitting at the same time in increasing danger. Each is difficult on its own in animation, but when you put all those things together it becomes complex to pull off. I wouldn’t have never tried that at the time.”
And this is only the start of the season. These two unlikely companions have already been through hell, but there’s so much more to come. Tartakovsky added, “There are a number of episodes where there are eight to 10 minute fight sequences, and each one of them almost broke the studio.” Knowing that they are pushing the boundaries of what the studio is capable of only makes me more excited to see the new adventures of Spear and Fang.
“Primal” season 2 returns to Adult Swim on July 21, 2022 and the following day on HBO Max.