Review and photographs by ‘Tetonbabydoll’. Edited by Plesiosauria.
The first impression one might get when they see this Stegosaurus figure is its small size. The figure measures 6 inches long and 3.5 inches high at the tip of the highest plate. It is roughly the size of the original Carnegie and Battat stegosaurs. It was released in 2008 as part of Safari Ltd’s ‘Wild Safari’ line, which is ever-growing in quantity and quality.
Even though it is not large, it is still quite striking, at first glance this is due to the coloration chosen. The main body is painted a red along the top half, and a tan on the bottom. The two main colors divide the body about in half. They are separated with a dark brown line going down the body in a waving pattern. The tan belly is dry brushed with a lighter sandy color, and the red fades into a dark brown on the top. This brown color bleeds directly up into the bottom part of the plates, which in turn fade back into red, and then tan at the tips, thus mirroring the body’s coloring. This is also done with the tail spikes, though the red is left out. The head is red, accented and shaded with dark brown. The mouth interior is bright pink, the eyes bright yellow with round black pupils. The toes are picked out in dark brown. This color pattern seems garish and bright at first glance, yet somehow it all works.
As for the sculpt itself, this has to be my favorite Stegosaurus toy ever. It is nearly perfectly proportioned, and the animal is posed mid-stride, with its left front foot raised up off the ground. The tail is held high up and straight, with only a slight side to side s-shape. I personally feel that the tail may be just a bit on the short side. The plates number 25 and are arranged in an alternating double row. They are nice and large in proportion to the body. The tail spikes are long and project up and outwards in a ‘v’ shape. There is a great deal of muscle detailing visible in the legs and body, and the faint impression of the ribs can be seen.There are some nice folds of skin on the belly and joints. The main skin texture is comprised of many finely engraved criss- crossing wrinkles. A similar texture is also used on the plates. The details are crisp and well defined.
The head of this figure is one of its most astounding features. It is tiny. And I mean really, really tiny. This is one of the only mass produced toys I know of that correctly portrays just how small this animal’s head really was. It is perched at the end of a long, slender neck that is slightly raised. The mouth is open as if the animal is bellowing. Despite its tiny size, there is a fairly good amount of detail engraved into the head, and again it is crisp and well executed. There are cheeks, jaw muscles and orbital bones visible. It is all well shaded and detailed. The tiny eyes are perfectly painted. The beak is well defined and detailed, down to the little nostrils. Many companies may well have skimped on detail and quality on a head this small, but not Wild Safari. Every aspect of this toy is incredibly well done.
Many members of the Dinosaur Toy Forum know me as the guy who repaints everything, even Battats, so i guess the best praise I can offer about this figure is that it is one of only three figures, out a collection of 140, that has not, and will not be, repainted. There is really no need. I could change the color, make it different, but I could not make it look better. And, with that wonderful head, I truly doubt I could even match what Wild Safari has accomplished.
My rating would have to be a 10/10.
The WS Stegosaurus is available here for just $4.64