Review: Jonathan Park: Ep. 17 – Mysterious Stranger

For more Jonathan Park reviews, click here.

Plot Summary

A dangerous arsonist escapes from the Sheriff near Brenan Ranch. Suddenly, a homeless man shows up at the museum construction site and offers his help. Is this mysterious stranger the escaped arsonist? (Taken from here.)

Topics in this episode:

  • Tasmanian Wolves
  • Convergent Evolution
  • Convergent Evolution and Flight
  • Convergent Evolution and Eyes
  • Convergent Evolution and Fish with Antifreeze
  • Common Traits in Unrelated Animals

The Study Guide for episode 17 can be found here: jp_vol2_study_guide_epi17

Background Information

The Jonathan Park CDs are produced by Vision Forum Ministries.  Through these CDs, VF hope to ‘provide children and adults with scientific evidence that is in harmony with the Word of God’.  [Which raises the questions, ‘What does “in harmony” mean?’ and ‘What do they do with scientific evidence that is not in harmony with the Word of God?’]

Tagline: This is our Father’s world, God created it; we can explore it, so live the adventure!

Topics explored in this program:


Tasmanian Wolves

The Story: Nick Williams, a homeless man the other characters find, talks about wolves. He mentions the Tasmanian Wolf. This wolf is a marsupial, ie, it carries its young in a pouch. The last Tasmanian Wolf died in the 1930s.  (4:44-5:12)

The Facts: The Tasmanian Wolf is also known as the Tasmanian Tiger and it is officially extinct.

[Click to return to list of Topics.]


Convergent Evolution

The Story: Convergent evolution is when two animals that have two completely different ancestors, and therefore are on different ‘branches’ of the evolution tree, share similar characteristics. Evolutionists claim that these animals evolved separately, even though they share similar traits.

Wolves are a great example. The Tasmanian Wolf and the Timber Wolf share many similar characteristics. And yet, because one has a pouch and one does not, evolutionists claim that they each evolved from completely different ancestors. Evolution made a wolf two different times. Dr Park laughs and agrees saying that it is completely ridiculous; when it comes to evolution as we know it, it is completely impossible, but when it comes to convergent evolution, it is impossible times two.

The Study Guide says, “Now we can see silliness of this idea of convergent evolution. The odds that random, accidental mistakes could form one wolf are impossible! To say that random, accidental mistakes could make a wolf two completely different times would be…”


The Facts: Convergent evolution describes the acquisition of the same biological trait in unrelated lineages. So, that part is correct.


Straw Man Argument

Straw Man Argument

Evolution is not a result of random, accidental mistakes. (Why doesn’t Dr Park know this?)

Just because something seems incredible, does not mean that it isn’t true.  These people are simply using straw man arguments and arguing from incredulity.

[Click to return to list of Topics.]


Convergent Evolution and Flight

The Story: Flight is another great example of why convergent evolution is impossible. There are at least four different categories of animals that fly: birds, mammals, insects, and reptiles. Therefore from an evolutionary perspective, flight had to evolve four different times. With all the complexities involved, it would be impossible for flight to have evolved even once, let alone four different times. This is utterly silly. (9:12-10:23)

The Facts: Evolution is not a result of random, accidental mistakes.

Just because something seems incredible, does not mean that it isn’t true. These people are simply using straw man arguments and arguing from incredulity.

I find the attitude displayed here extremely disrespectful.

[Click to return to list of Topics.]


Convergent Evolution and Eyes

The Story: Eddie accidentally calls convergent evolution ‘convenient evolution’. When he is corrected, he simply says that it is an apt name; since there is no way to explain it, evolutionists find it convenient to use the term  ‘convergent evolution’.

Nick Williams says that squids have eyes that are similar to human eyes.  Squids are in the mollusk family, even though other animals in the mollusk family have very different eyes.  These animals supposedly share the same ancestor.  Evolutionists say that it was ‘random mutations’ that caused the squid to have eyes like humans.  He concludes that there is just no way that random, accidental mistakes could design something so similar twice!

The Facts: Eddie’s behavior is teaching young listeners (and perhaps older ones, too) to mock evolution.  Nick Williams does nothing to correct Eddie but instead feeds them more misinformation.

When scientists classify animals, they do more than just look at individual body parts like wings or eyes.

Finally, evolution is not a process of random, accidental mistakes.

[Click to return to list of Topics.]


Convergent Evolution and Fish with Antifreeze

The Story: Dr Park tells the gang about fish with antifreeze, one of the classic examples of convergent evolution. There is a fish near Antarctica (Notothenioidei) and another type of fish in the Arctic (Northern Cod).  Evolutionists believe that these two fish started out very similar to each other and then  40 million years ago these two separated and began to evolve on their own.  25 million years after that, the poles began to freeze and these fish developed glycoprotein, a special element that prevents the fish’s blood from freezing.  The genes that are responsible for making the antifreeze in each of the fish are so different that evolutionists have concluded that the fish must have evolved the antifreeze completely independent of each other.  However, the antifreeze is almost identical.  The conclusion is that the evolutionists have to believe that accidental mistakes formed antifreeze two completely different times in two completely different ways.  And we all know that is impossible. (14:39-16:00)

The Facts: The information about these two fish and convergent evolution can be found here. It very briefly and succinctly explains how the scientists came to the conclusion of convergent evolution.  It was not a conclusion that was arrived at ‘conveniently’.

If you are very science-inclined and big words don’t intimidate you, here is another article that explains the experiment in greater detail.

Evolution is NOT a process of accidental mistakes.

Just because you don’t understand something, or it seems unlikely, don’t dismiss it as ‘impossible’.  It is disrespectful.

[Click to return to list of Topics.]


Common Traits in Unrelated Animals

The Story: Since there are unrelated animals that share common traits, Mr Williams says that that is excellent proof that evolution couldn’t have happened.  Usually, when animals share common traits, they have a common ancestor.  But in the case of convergent evolution, they share similar traits even though they are not related at all.  This ‘completely baffles the theory of evolution’.

On the other hand, when Creationists are presented with such information, it doesn’t mean a common ancestor; it means a common Creator. (Cue the oohs and ahhs)  When God created animals, He used some of His favourite designs several different times.


The Facts: Hmmm…I’m not seeing any hint of how convergent evolution ‘baffles the theory of evolution’.  Someone care to show me?

Did all these animals have these traits at the time of Creation, or did they adapt these traits some time after, eg, after the Flood and then settled into their new habitats? I promise this is not a trick question.  I sincerely want to know the answer to this question from a YEC perspective.

[Click to return to list of Topics.]



This is by far the worst episode that I’ve listened to so far.  Some of the snippets of information are correct and factual.  Most of the statements about evolution are just plain wrong and spoken with a contemptuous attitude.  Words like impossible and silly are said several times in the program and appear several times in the Study Guide as well.

Not recommended for learning about science.  Okay for lessons in logic and how not to behave.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, Nick Williams, the homeless man who turns up at the construction site, is NOT the escaped arsonist.  Did you think he might be?  Shame on you.

The show has found a new star
A stranger who’s come from afar
“Ridiculous” and “silly”
They said that – yes, really
This is the worst episode by far!
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About yewnique

I am a Malaysian-born woman who is married to an Australian and now live in Melbourne, Australia. I am a mother to four children. I home school. I like reading, writing, and cooking -- not necessarily in that order. I care about grammar and spelling, but am nonchalant about the Oxford Comma. I try to follow Christ's teachings.

Posted on Monday, September 6th, 2010, in Creation vs Evolution, Jonathan Park, Jonathan Park Reviews, Science, Vision Forum, Young Earth Creationism. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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