Ever since Walking with Dinosaurs came out a decade ago, Liopleurodon has been famous. However, this Liopleurodon figure was made a good ten years before walking with dinosaurs, so, luckily for us collectors, it wasn’t “inspired” by the WwD version like every other liopleurodon on the market today (I’m looking at you, procon and safari….).
(Herbert, here, is about the same size as the schleich “herman” figure)
This Liopleurodon is twenty years old. For being such an aged figure, it has stood the test of time very well. The sculpt is fantastic. The eyes and the nostrils are placed far up on the snout, just as they should be. The rear flippers are larger and thicker than the front ones, just as they should be; many companies even today still get that wrong. The flippers are also all pointing backwards, with slight wrinkles behind each one. The teeth are randomly sized and fang like, just like they were on actual pliosaur skulls- I wonder why most companies make them all uniformly sized and placed. The teeth also extend a little bit past the end of the jaws, that’s always a plus! The tail is long, straight, and tapering. The body is nice and straight too; it wouldn’t have been able to curve itself much in real life. The head has a very gentle expression, partially due to the fact that, just like all other invictas, this figure has a closed mouth.
Apparently, the only reason invicta started to paint their dinosaur figures was to compete with other companies producing lesser-quality but very colorful painted figures. For apparently having the paint just thrown on it in order for it to sell better, this Liopleurodon‘s paint job is surprisingly nice. I’ve heard that the paint applications on other painted invicta figures have been crude and obscure a lot of skin detail; I guess it’s good that there wasn’t much skin detail on this one to begin with! The figure does suffer some problems with paint though; the teeth aren’t painted very well and the paint flakes off easily ( a few moves around my marine reptile shelf gave him some scuffs on his belly – the paint on painted invicta figures seems nearly as delicate as the paint on bullyland’s figures!). The colors, as you can see, are a nice greenish blue on the back with a creamy belly. Where the blue meets the cream, there is a mottled pattern. The eyes are black with a tiny white dot in them to simulate light reflecting off the eye. The paint on the rest of the figure is extremely shiny by itself (no white dots needed!), and it makes it look wet. The teeth are plaint white. As if you didn’t already know, this figure was first made in a light green unpainted plastic, while this one is made of a more rubbery transparent plastic.
This Liopleurodon has held the title of best pliosaur figure for twenty years- it seems as though it only might (might!) be outcompeted next year by Safari Ltd’s new Liopleurodon. Whether this is or not, this figure will always remain a classic that’s great in any collection!
Sometimes available on Ebay here