For over a century, the paleontologists and museums were the guardians of knowledge concerning beasts from the paleo world. Before the dark times…before Jurassic Park. Ok, so maybe not the dark times, but the fact remains that many in the general public owe their knowledge of dinosaurs due to what they learned in Jurassic Park. When you think of Jurassic Park and Spinosaurus, you immediately think of the monster that took on T-Rex, snapped its neck, and let out a victorious roar with one foot on Rex’s lifeless body in Jurassic Park III. That individual had a distinct look that is instantly recognizable with its green eyes, huge head with two crests, and a sail on its back.
Before Jurassic Park III, the general public, if they were even aware that Spinosaurus existed, where only aware that it had a giant sail and that it was a predator. Amazingly, Kenner released a Spinosaurus toy for the Lost World movie before all the Spinosaurus hype when JP III came along. If a kid saw this incarnation of Spinosaurus in a store during the 90’s, he/she would have thought it more or less correct.
About the Toy: Slash, the Electronic Spinosaurus was a medium sized bipedal toy that is in a walking pose, with its legs apart, and has a straight inflexible body. The head is a standard generic predator head, with jaws that open and close. The sail is a classic round shape which is brightly colored and patterned. The wrists are pronated, which is fine for when it plays the piano or decides to go for a swim and doggy paddle from place to place. When not swimming, it stood on the beach with its H-Man looking biceps flexing, to impress the ladies.
The calves bulge nicely on its hind legs and it has very long flat feet. Unfortunately, despite the flat feet, it is prone to falling over. You get one delicate stance only, unless you prop it up, or it will be lying on its side. Texturally, there are skin folds, wrinkles, small bumps, and underneath on the belly, the skin texture is crocodilian.
This Spinosaurus isn’t called slice for nothing. It features a simple attack action. When the left arm is pulled down the mouth will open, and inside it houses a very unimpressive, yet safe set of teeth with a strange forked tongue. Yes, that’s right; they gave it a reptile tongue. When the mouth opens it also gives out an electronic roar, though I would say a little high pitched for such a large animal.
The colors vary depending on which model you have. The original JPLW toy colors consist of blues and greens. Its belly and underside is in Dark blue. A light blue covers the flanks, arms, legs, and head. A light green covers the upper half of it and the sail. Over the green is a purplish blue runs along the entire top of the toy and the spots along the flank. The purple is also on the sail in the form of three stripes alternating with three rows of spots. None of the claws are painted. The left leg has the black JP.39 on it.
For the Jurassic Park Dinosaur toy line, they use the same sculpt but with an updated paintjob. The base color is an earthy dark brown with dark green on the upper half of the body, tail, and head. Dark green spots on the flanks and a greenish yellow sail with a much sharper stripes and dots. At least the toes are painted on this version.
Playability: For younger kids, they will find this toy a blast, but as they get older, they will get increasingly annoyed with the uselessness of the arms and legs, coupled with the fact it doesn’t stand very well. The electronics are good, though the sound is a little high pitched. Along with the roaring sound the jaws open and close, which add to the fun of this toy.
Overall Appraisal: It was a nice attempt by Kenner to try and branch out into lesser known dinosaurs, but the execution was a little lacking. The main negative is having only one pose to put it in, and even then, having stability issues. The legs and arms move, but do not enhance the playability of the toy. The sculpt on this toy is a throwback to an earlier time, and the paint job is interesting and fun that some people will find quite appealing. The electronics are good, so even if you have one collecting dust on a shelf, it is fun to hear it roar from time to time. It can add a spark of fun to the day. This is a hit and miss toy, some will like, many will not. Personally, I really like it, and that is mainly due to the paint job.
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