Tyrannosaurus rex (2014) (Carnegie Collection by Safari Ltd.)


Just as the Carnegie collection’s 10 year milestone was celebrated with the release of an updated Tyrannosaurus sculpt, so this year’s 25th anniversary sees the release of an all-new T. rex figure, one better suited to the line’s current aesthetic. This latest generation T. rex is an obvious improvement still further on the old version, and shows a commendable level of background research, even if it’s still not quite the ‘definitive T. rex‘ figure that some might have wanted it to be. Still, if nothing else, we’ve certainly come a long way from the chunky blockhead with painted-on teeth.

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First impressions are good. While the tripod pose is a pity, the subtle sideways sweep of the tail at least looks less stiff and unnatural than the obvious ‘prop tails’ on the Carnegie Cryolophosaurus and Concavenator. The overall proportions of the body are excellent; the hips are massive, the chest suitably barrel-shaped, and the arms are as tiny as they should be (by no means a given in T. rex toys, in spite of the animal’s reputation). The head appears very large at first glance, but it’s by no means disproportionate for T. rex – ‘Stan’ in particular is noted for its outsized-looking noggin.

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In fact, the head in particular is excellent on this figure, corresponding closely to real T. rex skulls without appearing ‘shrink-wrapped’. Careful attention has been paid to the shape of the animal’s hornlets and bosses, and there is ample room for jaw musculature (an occasional problem with T. rex figures) alongside nicely realised superficial details such as the nostrils, ears, and beady eyes. The teeth are appropriately proportioned and, while of course making concessions to the fact that a child would probably want to deploy the jaws as a weapon, don’t appear overly blunted.

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The head is borne on a lovingly detailed, impressively muscular neck, while the torso is certainly robust – although perhaps not robust enough. The Carnegie style certainly favours rather svelte (but by no means emaciated) dinosaurs, and here it seems that the torso could perhaps do with being a little deeper, which would have made the protrusion of the pubic ‘boot’ a little less obvious. The ankles and feet also seem a little delicate for T. rex, and could do with some widening side-to-side. While we’re discussing the beast’s multi-tonne chunkiness, its big fat rear end might also not be big and fat enough.

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Yes, I’m afraid that the problem with Carnegie theropod backsides persists in this figure – that tail base is simply too thin to accommodate the pretty meaty muscles that ran from the tail to the thigh and helped drive the creature forward (the better to hunt Triceratops, lawyers and what have you). Still, it seems churlish to complain about this sort of thing when so few other figures get it right; this remains an unusually well-researched figure, and will please anyone used to despairingly trudging past the usual hideous dreck in their local shops.

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Carnegievolution

All in all, it’s been quite a journey for the Carnegie T. rex – from chunky child’s plaything, through smush-faced terracotta wonder, to stripy green, toothy-grinned splendour. There may remain anatomical nitpicks, and (as with other Carnegie figures) it perhaps could have used a little livening up aesthetically – there are no decorative spines or feathers, and the paint app leaves something to be desired. Nevertheless, it’s a figure I’d recommend to anyone hankering for a decent 1:40-ish scale model of a freakish coelurosaur in their life.

Available from Amazon here and Ebay here.

37 Responses to Tyrannosaurus rex (2014) (Carnegie Collection by Safari Ltd.)

  1. well ok the the papo rex is well sculpted but its not accurate -this figure is accurate but is so boring and average-look at it-its shiny smooth body is not accurate even for figure of this standard by Carnegie museum that has some of the prize specimens of dinosaurs in the world-
    -also its 1/40 but really since they release 1 figure each year it should be deluxe quality and 1/30 bigger size.
    -in the past the figures were generally better quality but this is there poster dinosaur and is I agree with the score above .its accurate but very boring and the tail looks silly-
    -another point is about the mouth always being open -it looks silly and isn’t accurate from standpoint- and wish they would make rex with its mouth closed and in lying down pose or resting pose for change.
    Carnegie sculptors need replaced -forest rogers should be removed its obvious that this sculpter makes accurate but boring figures -they need to look at the recent paleoart books for views on how to sculpt dinosaurs correctly anatomically and with good colours and maybe add background scenes to match certain figures the way they did years ago with some of the figures. collect seem to sculpt better figures for all there releases.

  2. I’ll never buy this figure because of its tripod pose. I really don’t think a real Tyrannosaurus could achieve this pose. It looks really bad, and it makes this Tyrannosaurus look like a tail dragger.

    I don’t like the bright yellow-green on the prototype, or the spots on it’s face, so I prefer the paintjob on the final figure. Even on the final figure the paintjob isn’t great though, and the head is poorly painted. The teeth would’ve looked good if they were individually sculpted.

    Due to the previous brown version’s individually sculpted teeth, and better, non-tripod pose, I think this 2014 Carnegie Tyrannosaurus is worse than its 1999 predecessor. The pose on the brown one is still frustrating though.

    The Carnegie Collection has produced some great figures in the past. I think they’d do better if they stopped making these awful tripods! It seems pointless for Carnegie to try to make their dinosaurs accurate if they’re going to be in inaccurate poses. If only all their theropods stood like their Sinraptor and Albertosaurus…

    I’d also like it if they stuck to a consistent scale for larger animals (1:40 is a great choice) and maybe one or two others for smaller animals.

    I hope Carnegie improves and makes more figures in a year! That would make them really great!

  3. Well I certaintly haven’t seen all of Forest’s Sculps, but for the good ones ( the spinosaurus, for example) the only thing that let them down was the paint job…….

  4. Well, well. How some howled when I flayed this abomination based on the first photos were released on the DTF. Lessee … 155 votes and 2 out of 5 stars …. gee hate to be the one to say “I told you so”…. but….

    Oh yeah – does anyone around here STILL want to defend Forest Rodgers from my long-held verdict that as a paleo-sculptor she SUCKS?

    • Yeah, I will. Miragaia? Brachiosaurus? Even within the constraints that are obviously being placed on her, she can turn in some lovely sculpts. Even this one really isn’t that bad – just a bit vanilla. I really don’t understand all the hate.

    • allosoddingaurus

      I’ll second Marc’s remarks. There are some pretty fantastic Rodgers sculpts. (I’m a big fan of the Giganotosaurus. And those mentioned already — the Miragaia, the Brachiosaurus — are lovely.) Also, I’m not sure how the “155 votes and 2 out of 5 stars” vindicates the claim that the sculpt is bad, unless hoi polloi are reliably the best judge of quality. And that’s not borne out by the ratings some other models have received here (e.g. Schleich’s 2012 T. rex…4 stars!).

    • I’m backing up Marc and allo. YOU SERIOUSLY DONT THINK ANY OF HER SCULPTS ARE AMAZING? If so please reply

  5. fffkjh@yahoo.com

    Carnegie museum has the most valuable t rex skeletons as well as so much information and is 1 of few museums in the world to have the real fossils -so since they barley used this and made the model to small -it should have been 1/30scale as carnotarus.so much potential was on this as it could have been the best since battat t rex.-but its so average and boring I wish they had let wild sarafi made it as the artists are better there. this same artist forest rogers needs replaced -and the rest of the artist shud be removed and replaced with new paleoartists -cuz thers many of them.

  6. Do you have the new Schleich Dino toy?

  7. What did you think about the new Schleich Carnotaurus?

    • I have it !! bought the Carnotaurus this March and for me its a classic, good material used and sculpt is very cool , color is dark but still it has a articulated jaw and well detailed, debate about number of digits on fore limbs.. but its cool !!

  8. Do one on the new Carnegie Charcharodon. :)

  9. Can you do a review of the NEW replica-saurus Allosaurus and Carnotaurus! It’s about time!

  10. I personally think the calification appearing there is a real shame.

  11. aside from the mediocre paintjob, this Tyrannosaurus is awesome!

  12. Really? This piece of junk over the Papo Tyrannosaurus? Papo’s dinosaurs may not be at the height of scientific accuracy, but the craftsmanship in their models is far superior to this. This has got to be one of the worst of Safari’s modern dinosaur line.

    • allosoddingaurus

      yep. really. some of the papos are great (the carnotaurus and allosaurs for example). But the Tyrannosaurus? bleach. both of them. I loathe those hideous arms and their hollywood-jurassic-park cartoonish proportions. Just awful. I’d take this carnegie T. rex any day.

      • So true,I completely agree with you.The Papo Tyrannosaurus rex apart from being pretty inaccurate,it has rather grotesque sense.This one’s far more aesthetic and obviously more accurate.

  13. allosoddingaurus

    I’m with Concavenator on this one. It’s not the Tyrannosaurus of my dreams, but it’s still one of the best out there now. I’d take this in a second over the Running Papo T. rex. I wish they’d beefed up the tail and given it a respectable paint job (the difference between the company photos and the actual paintwork is as bad as Walter White suggests). Additionally, it would have been great if, like the Carnegie Giganotosaurus, it were possible to tweak it into a bipedal position. But it’s doesn’t appear that this is the case — the tail doesn’t seem heavy enough to counterbalance the head and torso. Still, aside from my T. rex models by Favorite/Kinto Co., this is my favorite mass produced plastic toy Tyrannosaurus.

  14. BTW,it’s a total shame this figure is as valored as the Geoworld Velociraptor
    Hope anyone takes offense from my comment.

  15. The paintjob is a mess… A blatant example of how sometimes the final figure is miles away from the prototype. It looked quite good on the prototype, indeed:

    http://downloads.safariltd.com/files/Catalog_Images/New_Products/2014_New_Items/Carnegie_Collectibles/411301_Tyrannosaurus_rex.jpg

    But then, what happened? This case is just too extreme… These look like 2 absolutely different figures.

    I can love the idea of a Jack Horner “scavenger theory” colouration, as that old documentary proposed. Even beyond the theory, I can love the contrast between the lime-green of the body and bright red of the head… But do it right, for god’s sake!

    Guess we always have the word “REPAINT”. (Or REPENT!)

  16. postsaurischian

    Uninspired sculpt – I just can’t buy that. How many uninspired T. rex sculpts does the world need? The anatomy might be right. I’m missing the creative beauty!

    • Totally agree. The paint job is atrocious! No care was taken it the aesthetics. It looks like a middle school art student painted it.

    • I agree with you postsaurischan and Clay apart from the tripod position and how badly I painted his face does not seem adequate for a predatory dinosaur from my point of view the moment smarter. I understand that you please do not buy, but buy it for the mere collecting in this case, but does not get to the heel height carnotaurus the same brand and sculptor. I have to say that the entire collection of Schleich and that if greed is bad with everything that I have is pure masochism.

    • “Uninspired sculpt- I just can’t buy this”-Since almost the completion of Tyrannosaurus figures are knockoffs of the JP thing,I seriously can’t understand why when one day the best dinosaur model brand (Carnegie for me,undoubtely) comes when a Tyrannosaurus that apart from it being totally original is super accurate.While perhaps this is not the Tyrannosaurus rex I had in my dreams for this line (that’d be a feathered,not tripod,stunningly painted one) this one is pretty good IMO.The best Tyrannosaurus model in the toy market.No other one,no JP knockoff is beating this.Also “It looks like a middle school art student painted it”- Hate to break it doe you-Let us ( young paleoartists from the dinotoyforum paint it and you’ll get a far improved paintjob,no joke.However,it’s clear that the tripod pose is absolutely pathetic.Dunno why is Carnegie sticking to that ever boring pose.
      I love this figure despite the little flaws.Can’t wait to have it on my shelf.

  17. Crikey! The head does look massive, especially in that first photograph. The figure is certainly an improvement over the previous version despite the flaws you pointed out. The white ‘cheeks’ also do it a disservice, I feel.

    • Yeah, the paint app really lets the sculpt down…again. The perspective makes the head look bigger than it really is in that first picture.

  18. Here’s a clue for paleo-sculptors…. If the tail on your figure won’t counterbalance the clay/plastic/wood/whatever in the same manner as the real animal’s tail counterbalanced the beast, you got it wrong. (Figure bone density compensated for the no-density lungs.) What?

  19. Apart from the tripod tyrannosaurus rex, you have to say it’s a good piece, in every way, I am not convinced his facial expression position, put from my humble point of view as an animal of very few lights in his features, and considering it was a predator, land. with all the scariest of all time security, I would have liked some factions in the less hieratic and fearsome face, and most importantly, that denotasen intelligence that this dinosaur would. Of all the ways I will be one of the first to buy the product, because always in the figures of Carnegie / Safari, indicating it is a great quality product and an empathy with the buyer for the company.

  20. Though perhaps not as bad as the Cryolophosaurus, it is still an uncomfortably obvious tripod. The stance mars any fluidity the sculpture might have. It’s such a shame when one sees how much it is immediately improved by simply tilting it to the right position with its tail off the ground. Surely there are solutions Carnegie can adopt to avoid this by now?

    • I’d like to see them employ detachable bases a la Favorite, but there must be some reason they aren’t doing that already.

  21. Am I the only person tired of the “turning head to roar” pose Safari puts on their dinosaurs?

    • A closed- or even only-marginally-open-mouthed animal would indeed be a nice change.

      • For that reason I still think the closed mouth Sue sculpted for the Field Museum is the best Tyrannosaurus figure made by Safari. Great review BTW, I’ll probably get it but it is not a priority.

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