When Dinosaurs Ruled The Mind #67: Jurassic World Toys

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Well guys, this is it.

My final Jurassic Park toy review.

It took like four months to finally get through, but I’m doing it. We are finally going to talk about the Jurassic World toys.

Man, to think I originally planned to do all the movies toy lines in just one post. That would have taken forever!!!

Just like all the other movies, the latest entry of the Jurassic franchise had an obligatory toy line tie in because everyone knows that kids love dinosaur toys. And this is true. But there is only one problem….

Kids don’t really buy toys today like they used to.

Back in the 90’s, toys were a much bigger business than they are today, and Jurassic Park took full advantage of that market climate. Today, however, kids seem only get really excited to buy a physical toy if you need it for a video game.

It’s a surprisingly lucrative business.

Now, i’m not saying kids don’t buy toys anymore, the huge aisles dedicated to the play things at retail stores is a testament to that. i’m just saying the demand isn’t nearly as huge anymore, which may be one of the reasons why Hasbro may have low balled this particular line…

Yep, the reviews are in, and the unanimous consensus is that these toys are sub par. Not terrible, but they certainly could have been better. And personally, I have to agree. I don’t own any of these toys, but playing around with them in the packaging and I can already see that the toys are below average. Heck, I think that even the 5 year old me would have been underwhelmed.

Underwhelmed, but I still would play the daylights out of them because they’re still dinosaurs. Who do you think I am?

But before we get into the main dinosaurs in the toy line, let’s take a look at the figures that caused the most controversy and outcry from the fans.

These are some of the Velociraptor toys that were among the first in the line to be released. At first glance, they seem like pretty average Jurassic Park Velociraptors with the scaly skin and no feathers yada yada. But take a second look at them if the problem wasn’t immediately obvious like it was to me. Go ahead, take a look right on their feet. See it yet?

They don’t have a sickle claw.

R U SERIOUS?!!!

How do you make a Velociraptor toy without the sickle claw? That is literally the feature raptors are most known for! It’s what makes a raptor a raptor! If I was given this toy as a kid I probably would have pretended it was a Herrerasaurus! This is beyond infuriating. It just makes you wonder what exactly they were thinking when designing it. Apparently, the sickle claw was omitted for ‘playability’, insinuating the toe claw would just get in the way. There are a few reasons why that doesn’t make sense. What about the other raptor figures in this very toy line that do have sickle claws?

See, was that so hard?

What about the raptor figures form the previous Jurassic Park films? Did any of them have to sacrifice the toe claw for simple ‘playability’?

And what about the million other raptor toys made? Do you think kids have less fun playing with them because that pesky claw keeps getting in the way?

Let’s be honest, has any toy ever had this problem?

So you can see already how these guys left a bad taste in the fans mouths. But sadly, things don’t exactly improve from here.

 First, let’s take a look at the Ankylosaurus.

Hmm, I don’t know if I’m crazy, but I swear I’ve seen this pose before….

No guys, seriously. I know I’ve seen this specific pose somewhere in artwork before. If you can find it, it would be greatly appreciated!

Now as for the toy itself, it’s pretty standard for an Ankylosaurus toy. Any Ankylosaurus toy with an action feature is going to have the tail swing, and this one is no exception. But not only that, but it also has this strange movement where the head and neck seems to….retract…into the dinosaurs…shell?

Um, no. That is completely impossible. This toy is treating Ankylosaurus as if it where some sort of giant prehistoric turtle, which no it was not! This is as crazy as a toy person whose main feature was retracting his neck and skull into this abdomen, it’s just not biologically possible!

Turtle, Turtle!

Well, on the bright side, despite that weird as heck head action, this Ankylosaurus is still more accurate than the one featured in the film. It doesn’t have those God forsaken side spikes!

Guys, this really needs to stop. Its 2015.

Alright, let’s move on to the Tyrannosaurus Rex.

The Tyrannosaurus looks basically like your standard JP T. rex, but there is something definitely off. IDK, I think it’s in the head.

GAH!! Too close!

Yeah, the head on the T. rex is very out of proportion, and the lower jaw just doesn’t seem to fit correctly on the upper jaw. The head just looks like a mangled mess. No other T. rex toys from the other films had this problem.

Something else that’s quite obvious from this picture is the quality of the plastic and the very glaring screw holes. Yeah, these toys just feel cheap and are just plain ugly at times. Not only that, but the toy designers/manufacturers make some pretty weird decisions regarding the toys themselves. Look that the large T. rex toy for example.

You see that tail on the bottom of the packaging? No, the tail doesn’t naturally bend that way. You have to actually physically reconnect the tail once you open the box. Not only that, but the tail is kind of loose fitting to begin with, and would probably only get looser as kids continue to play with it. And you know how kids love to loose lose parts of their toys…

This will be the situation within a matter of weeks.

Come on guys, seriously? This has never been a problem with toy dinosaurs in the history of like, forever. Is this just to increase maximum toy shelf space? That’s the only logical reason I can think of.

Man, these Jurassic World T. rex toys are so ugly, I actually think the best looking one is from the LEGO set!

At least it looks properly proportioned.

Ok, let’s move on to a dinosaur that certainly didn’t appear in this film, but had it’s hay day back in the last one.

Of course, with all his popularity from the third movie, Spinosaurus was bound to worm his way into this franchise again somehow.

Don’t think I don’t know what’s going on.

The Spinosaurusu toy here looks pretty identical to the noes from JP3, sans the color scheme, although seeing a toy like this on the shelves again does remind me how pop culture refuses to move forward in the light of new discovery…

Guys, remember. This is still a thing.

But really, what do you expect. It’s Jurassic Park.

Now, I’m not sure if I should even be reviewing this guy, since technically it’s not even a real dinosaur. But…

….here we are.

Ahh, Stegoceratops. The dinosaur that almost made an appearance in Jurassic World before Colin Treverrow’s son told him it was a bad idea (good on you, kid). Still, you see this guy briefly on a computer screen in the film…

What almost was…

…and the dinosaur even makes an appearance in the official Jurassic World tablet game, so you can tell that they had big plans for this creature at some point in production.

Now for the toy itself. In it’s defense it’s actually probably one of my favorite figures in the line. It’s sturdy, well sculpted, and definitely has a good feel to it. Too bad the sculptors put all their effort into a dinosaur that isn’t even in the film or is even an actual dinosaur at all.

 

I am not the first to point this out, but the skull of this toy does share quite the resemblance to the recently discovered ceratopsian Nasutoceratops, what with the forward facing horns and the lack of a nose horn. Whether or not this was intentional or a coincidence is uncertain, but it’s still a pretty cool piece of trivia.

Next up on our list in Allosaurus, who was actually a toy I was pretty excited for when it was announced (Allosaurus is one of my all time favorite dinosaurs). I do have to say that I am fairly disappointed by it, though. The sculpt is very ugly and very lazy looking, while the coloration brings to mind a certain burger eating fast food mascot.

Ba da  ba ba ba…

Yeah, I can’t help but feel slightly betrayed by this toy, as I’ve wanted more Allosaurus’ on the toy shelves for a long time. Heck, that unreleased 2011 Jurassic Park Allosaurus is so much better than this one we got. Why can’t we have that?!

Because fate is cruel.

Alright, who’s next?

Now, the Pachycephalosaurus toy is actually one I do really like, as I feel it is well proportioned and surprisingly accurate. Of course, like any Pachycephalosaurus toy, it has the obligatory head butting action; but really, it would feel like a cheat if it didn’t have that! Pachycephalosaurus was actually supposed to be utilized in the film much more than it was, but it was sadly cut from the final movie and it only made a tiny blink-and-you-miss-it cameo.

Oh yeah, and apparently they’re racist to Pakistanis.

OK, let’s talk about the true star of the movie, Indominus Rex!

 

Now, I can’t talk about this guy scientifically since once again it’s not a real dinosaur, but I can at least say how I think the toys themselves are. The smaller ones, like the other figures, are pretty ugly and cheap looking, but at least this particular I. rex toy has a cool feature regarding the Dino Damage. Not only can you cover it, but the covering is also spring loaded. That way when you simulate another dinosaur ripping into it, all you have to do is push the other dinosaurs muzzle against it and the spring will release, revealing the wound. That’s a great way to utilize that feature!

The big Indominus Rex toy is also the best toy in the line in my opinion. It’s made of a really nice feeling plastic and has a really satisfying chomping action. Too bad it’s insanely expensive. Still, once again I’m going to have to say my favorite Indominus Rex toy is probably the LEGO one.

Or the plushies.

Next up we’ve got Dimorphodon, and these guys are pretty ugly as well. Sure, Dimorphodon was already a pretty ugly creature, but this toy design is certainly doing it no favors. Even though the sculpt at least tries to replicate the minimal fibers that the creature is known to have and is even depicted with in the movie, the whole thing still looks unnervingly reptilian and lizard-like. The sculpt on the skull doesn’t really do it for me either. It’s kind of dopey looking, almost like Rex from Toy Story.

Imagine that face with Wallace Shawn’s voice.

As any pterosaur toy reconstruction, the body proportions are mangled beyond recognition, but sadly that’s a problem the film version also has, which depicts Dimorphodon as a theropod headed scaly dinosaur dragon thing instead of the fairly small and short winged creature it actually was.

Do they even use skeletal references in these movies?

Thankfully, however, the Dimorphodon has a pretty good wing flapping mechanism; one of the better ones I’ve seen and miles ahead of the mechanics they used in the earlier toy lines for the pterosaurs.

Now let’s take a look at the Ceratosaurus, and yay, they actually kept the color scheme from the third film!

Yay! People besides me remember you!

Unfortunately, the toy also inherits the movie Ceratosaurus’ inaccuracies, with a skeletal design more akin to a mythical dragon than any known dinosaur. However, one of the really good things I can say about this particular toy is the fact that the hands are facing each other, not pointing downward like most Jurassic Park theropods do. This is the correct way the hands are supposed to be positioned, and it’s actually quite the breath of fresh air.

Now, Dilophosaurus may have only made a small cameo in the actual movie…

Although said cameo was admittedly pretty awesome…

…the long standing tradition of making Dilophosaurus toys even though her last major appearance in the franchise was the first time we even see her will not end today. As far as Dilophosaurus toys go though, I’ll have to say this one is OK at best. The frill is fixed on, which would have annoyed me as a kid, but thankfully it can be folded inward. It also comes with a green plastic rod that you can put into the mouth to simulate the spitting venom, which is both gimmicky and kind of gross.

 Next we’ve got the OH MY GOD WHAT IS THAT?!!!!

Is…is that the Pteranodon?

Look at that body! It’s like a squashed baby! Those legs! Those wings! I don’t think they were meant to bend like that! And I thought the ones in the movie were ugly. AND ARE THOSE TEETH?!!! Not even the ones in the movie had teeth!

Look! The movie actually got something right!!!

So there goes my hopes and dreams that someday we’ll have an accurate, no scratch that, halfway decent looking pterosaur toy on the market. LEGO, can you once again save me?

Wow, so much better.

Guys, I don’t know how much more of this I can take. All these dinosaurs that are so woefully inaccurate, so ugly, so cheap looking.

For you guys, I’ll do one more.

ONE.

MORE.

BRING ON THE MOSASAUR!!!

 

My God is that hideous.

Yeah, the Mosasaur toy doesn’t seem to fair any better than the Pteranodon. Much like the T. rex, the way the jaws are articulated makes it look like they don’t even fit on the head to begin with, which is so strange since so many toys before with similar functions never had the same problem. The body is also really awkward looking, I can’t put my finger on it, it just doesn’t look right. I have a feeling that this toy was designed around the illustration of this creature used on the website, which also doesn’t look quite right to me.

Compare this…

…to this.

Wow, I’m done. I’m actually done. YES! Finally! I can move on to the movies and TV shows I REALLY want to talk about. Return to my old format! I can leave these toys behind me!!!!!

Hold it right there!

Woah! Time Traveling Cynodont! I haven’t seen you since my Walking With Dinosaurs 3D Review! (Mostly because I can’t figure out how to write you into my blog posts anymore). What are you doing here?

There is one more toy line I would like you to look at. Toys that are actually very high quality and pretty to look at. No more cheap plastic throwaways like these!

Hey, that doesn’t sound to bad. Sure, I’m game.

Wait a minute, last time I reviewed something for you there was a terrible, terrible catch.

There was no catch. I simply had you review a bad film. These aren’t going to be bad figures. They’re miles ahead of these toys in quality.

And in accuracy?

Well….

Dun DUN DUUNNNNN!!!!

….

….

Papo.

Yes guys, I’ll be reviewing the infamous Papo dinosaur figures soon. But in the mean time, I’ll be spending some time working on another chapter of my novel Masai Mara and posting it on my other blog Ink & Paint Zoology. My next post here will be another edition of Dinosaurs That Need More Love, this time focusing on Shunosaurus.

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9 thoughts on “When Dinosaurs Ruled The Mind #67: Jurassic World Toys

  1. Ugh, the Pterrible Ptoothy Pteranodon again. Why Hasbro? Why have you failed me? You did so well with the last movie!
    I will give them points for that awesome wing flapping mechanism, though.
    IMO, the LEGOs are definitely better.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. i’m quite excited to learn more about shunosaurus without having to use the ultimate evil that is WIKIPEDIA ( it’s not a bad site you just give more accurate information and make it fun to read, unlike wikipedia which makes me feel like i’m training for an exam. )

    Like

  3. Well, the Schleich Saichanaia was what the Anky’s pose immediately reminded me of. But we all know how, er, appreciative the merchandise people are of other people’s art (judging by the “raptor den” shirt that used the outline of someone else’s Allosaurus) so it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if Anky’s design was stolen. And as for the head-retracting thing, I know it’s inaccurate but I personally find it hilarious. Reminds me of iguanas’ victory display.

    I’m with you on the hideous Pteranodon. Look at that face and try to tell me for one second that it doesn’t remind you of a Five Nights at Freddy’s animatronic. Just try.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I think the problem with the big T.rex’s head is that the jaws are open, but parallel to each other, not at an angle as they should be. Just a thought.

    Like

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