Ruff and Ready is the 35th episode of Dinosaur King, in Series 1.
We start with the Alpha Gang being chased across a large train bridge before being flattened by a falling Spiny, as the D-Team scores yet another sequential victory (in a mission never mentioned again whose objective was never stated). Back at Zeta Point, Dr. Z has had enough of their failures and reduces them to the position of dogs, feeding them with dog bones and putting them in dog houses…on the nosecone of a giant rocket that launches them off to find more dinosaur cards. He then has Rod toss an Alpha Scanner after them strapped to a pterosaur-shaped glider. Upon running out of fuel, the rocket crashes nose-first in Australia, activating an Iguanodon card.
At Max's house, Zoe is showing off her new "pet sash" her parents' pet shop is selling, meant for carrying around small pets in; Chomp seems to be the only one interested. Mrs. Taylor comes by and comments on their effectiveness with Max as a baby, saying that the sound of the heartbeat is soothing to babies, "not" trying to embarrass Max in the process. However, the Dino Holders start beeping, Reese in the D-Lab confirming the new dinosaur's location as near Ayers Rock in Australia. Dr. Taylor explains the Rock's color changing properties and the local wildlife, but, as usual, the D-Team has been gone for a while.
Meanwhile, the Alpha Gang are wandering around the Australian desert with a broken Alpha Scanner, watching a parade of lizards before realizing the last one was the Iguanodon…that seems to be leading them to an oasis. It acts friendly with Ursula, and while Zander and Ed insist on catching the dinosaur, she says they should keep following it instead. It even lets her ride it (and only her). Back at Zeta Point, with no working communications to them, Dr. Z is starting to realize he may have been too hard on the A-Team and wants to bring them back.
Arriving in Australia, the D-Team is looking around an free-roam exhibition of marsupials (wherein a joey kangaroo successfully defends its pouch from Chomp trying to climb inside). At the same time, the Alpha Gang and Iguanodon wander across a town and are welcomed as "lizard charmers". At least, Ursula is; Zander and Ed are relegated to selling stuff to tourists at Ayer's Rock while Ursula and "her" Iguanodon are treated almost like royalty (from respect, not a misunderstanding of magical powers as the trope normally goes). The D-Team moves on to Ayer's Rock to look for the dinosaur from atop, where they run into Zander and Ed, who run off of the edge to escape, the impact of the fall apparently fixing the Alpha Scanner.
Ursula and Iguanodon are meanwhile busy helping the villagers, "Iguano" helping to clear boulders to make a field plantable. Ursula admits she is now beginning to see these dinosaurs as loving, living creatures instead of just as cards to collect, as Ayer's Rock turns a brilliant shade of red in the sunset glow in the distance. She realizes she doesn't want Iguano to fall into Dr. Z's possession, pondering if she wants to quit and stay living here. This is cut short, however, with the arrival of Seth in a jet, who makes several close passes against the Iguanodon. In a moment of clarity, Ursula announces that she is defying Dr. Z's orders to capture the dinosaur, saying she's decided to stay here. Unfortunately, Seth has sent Iguanodon into a rage, and it tramples through the village, smashing houses and ramming boulders…breaking open a rock to reveal a glint that catches Seth's eye.
Zander summons Terry to beat Iguanodon down, hitting it with Volcano Burst, but the D-Team arrives and Paris and Chomp join the battle. In the midst of the fighting, Ursula races out to Iguanodon, staying by its side despite the incoming Terry, saved at the last second by Metal Wing's Pteranodon. Iguanodon still returns to its card from its previous damage, and Chomp defeats Terry. The Time Warp fades, and Ayer's Rock has turned dusty gray as night begins setting in. Seth has meanwhile investigated the glint from the rock to find a Velociraptor dinosaur card with a blank Element patch, and quickly hides it.
Due to Iguanodon's (admittedly highly provoked) rampage, the villagers are kicking Ursula out, and Zander and Ed pull her aboard the jet before Seth leaves them there, happy they finally have a dinosaur card to bring back so Dr. Z can congratulate them. Ursula, however, can't bear to let Dr. Z get Iguano, and so "accidentally" drops its card. The card lands on Max's head, and the D-Team celebrate yet another victory.
Back at Max's house, Chomp has finally gotten his way with Max being forced to wear one of the pet sashes to carry him in, much to Max's dislike and discomfort. At Zeta Point, Dr. Z is enraged to the point of cutting off the A-Team's food, until Helga cuts his ranting off. She calls an end to treating them like dogs, before giving them a total of three pieces of dog kibble as she won't waste leftovers. Ursula quickly eats them all, but is still hungry…
Max/Chomp vs. Alpha Gang/SpinyEdit
Chomp, using Electric Charge, is chasing Spiny and the Alpha Gang across a bridge. He catches up to and hits Spiny from behind, sending him flying onto the Alpha Gang, crushing them like pancakes and returning to his card.
Zander/Terry vs. Iguanodon vs. Zoe/Paris and Max/ChompEdit
Zander summons Terry to attack Iguanodon, immediately bringing forth a Time Warp Battlefield, charging and slamming the dinosaur. Iguanodon gets back up and rams Terry back, but Zander uses Volcano Burst, scorching Iguanodon.
The D-Team arrives, Zoe summoning Paris. Ursula consoles the injured Iguanodon as Terry charges in, the Battlefield's volcano erupting in the backdrop—before Zoe activates Metal Wing, the Pteranodon trio flying in and knocking Terry away from Iguanodon. Ursula at its side, Iguanodon returns to its card.
The Pteranodon circle Terry, but as they go in for another strike, Zander triggers Tail Smash, knocking them from the sky one-two-three and into their card. They are immediately replaced by Max summoning Chomp, who triggers Thunder Bazooka to leap over an incoming Volcano Burst and hit Terry, sending him flying through several boulders and returning to his card.
Zoe/Paris and Max/Chomp win
-Dr. Z: "You failed!?"
(the A-Team is holding onto the jet as Seth flies away)
-Ursula (thinking): My sweet Iguano. I can't take you with me. You deserve better than that. (releases card into the wind) "Whoops. Oh, look at that, I dropped the card."
-Zander & Ed: "Whaaat!?"
- The mission the Alpha Gang are on at the beginning of the episode was not from a previous episode and is never addressed again. As no new dinosaur cards appeared out of nowhere in the D-Team's collection, it can probably be assumed that this mission was in regards to Alpha Gang resources like Alpha Metal, monetary funding, or the like.
- This is one of the few times that a wild dinosaur not to become a main dinosaur is given a name.
- At the beginning, Dr. Z sends the A-Team to "where the dinosaur card is", even though it hadn't activated yet to show where it was. Perhaps Dr. Z used his fortunetelling dinosaur fossils to divine its location offscreen, as he had successfully done on-camera several times before.
- In this episode, we hear Max's mom call him "Maximus", which is either his full name or a nickname.
- The episode name could be a reference to the Jeff Beck Group album Rough and Ready or even the Hanna-Barbera cartoon Ruff and Reddy.