Generally, when we think about iguanas, we think about them acting like dogs or farting. We don’t generally associate them with Tom Cruise-style sprinting from danger to the safety of a rock. And yet, that’s just what this Planet Earth II clip offers up.
The clip focuses on the marine iguana, found only on the Galapagos Islands. They have a unique birth cycle where the female lays her eggs in volcanic ash or sand, and the babies, when they’re born, have to join the group on the rocks next to the shore. Unfortunately, because nature is horrible, that means the newborn has to sprint past a gauntlet of vicious snakes amid the corpses of iguanas that failed to survive, and freezing still in the middle of the sand, since snakes hunt by movement, and watch tensely as they slither by, uncertain if they’re about to strike. Never let it be said that nature isn’t hardcore.
The Planet Earth team, of course, is legendary for their careful filming, editing, and scoring to turn the everyday survival of animals into something action directors can only dream of. But this might be their greatest moment so far. We’ll never dismiss iguanas as farting lizards again.