Ah, Jurassic Park, what it is, what it was, and what it shall be. In its fourth instalment, Jurassic World (weather you liked it or not) brought forth that warm and fuzzy inner child that beats deep inside each of us. I think many of us wanted to feel the same way about the toys that accompanied the film. Now, Ceratosaurus has always been a semi popular dinosaur; but it did not make an appearance in the latest incantation of the Jurassic Park franchise. It was last seen in Jurassic Park III walking away from a huge pile of Spinosaurus dung. I would venture a guess that Spinosaurus dung is one adjective some people might use about the look and quality of the Jurassic World toys by Hasbro. Even though, some people maybe be happy with the toys, for a lot of people, they are no longer wondering what the verdict is in the case against the style and quality of Hasbro’s Jurassic World toys, and are just waiting to see if the toys get life imprisonment or should be melted down and recycled.
I digress. Let’s not be hasty and spew venom at this toy just yet, we should give the Ceratosaurus a chance. Here are four quick facts about Ceratosaurus before I get to the toy. First, it lived alongside Allosaurus, though it was smaller. Second, it had a row of osteoderms that ran down its back. Third, it had a strong flexible tail. Fourth, its skull was big for its body size, with a horn on its nose along with two horny ridges before the eyes, and long teeth in its upper mouth. “Whew”, ok lets get to the fun stuff. I was happy to see this interesting theropod grace the toy shelves but is it a worthy toy?
About the toy: The electronic Ceratosaurus is 9in (22.86cm) long and 4in (10.16cm) high at the nose horn. As with many Jurassic Park toys there are scientific inaccuracies, but at least it hands are not overly pronated and are positioned correctly. The toy has good balance, but the legs have a very limited range of motion so a kid playing with it cannot imitate walking, they have to make it hop or gallop. There is no neck joint so the head placement can only change by moving the legs but this only changes the height of the head (in a standing position) ever so slightly. Strangely the right arm can actually rotate the entire way around while the left one cannot. Four fingers are present which are spot on. As for the rest of the body, it looks rather thick and robust especially at the hips.
The skull has the large nasal horn, and two smaller hornlike ridges above each eye. (Yes I know they should be located in front of the eyes.) The mouth is open, but you can make it close and open in a buttery smooth motion by pushing down the tail that makes it chomp and roar. The electronic chomp sound after the roar, is very pleasing. Inside the mouth is a sculpted pink tongue. The teeth are tiny and rather uniform which makes the mouth look like its lost all its teeth. I know it is for safety, but it looks like it needs to go to the dentist and get dentures.
On its left side is the JW logo on the leg and of course the dino damage on its ribs. If the dino damage is pressed, it makes an upset roar, and the wound glows brightly. Why a wound needs to glow, I don’t know, but kids think it looks cool. On the right side you have the speaker slits on the ribs, and of course the dreaded screw holes are present. They also put the product information on the side of the tail. It is not a very flattering look.
The colorization is the same as it is in Jurassic Park III and very similar to the original die cast Ceratosaurus from the original JP line. The head and back are red with some black striping over a base creamy whitish yellow color. The pattern on this toy only extends a little way down its flanks and tail, where as in the movie the pattern covered the whole body. I do want to point out the eyes. As it is done rather nicely, it even has a small white dot to mimic a reflection. It’s a shame the rest of the paint job on this toy looks rushed. The plastic used on this toy is the same for the rest of the line as it feels hard, yet brittle. I am not sure how durable this figure could be in the long run, but since there are electronics, I would keep it inside, and away from water.
Overall appraisal: The Ceratosaurus is both good and bad, depending on how you look at it. By no means is it painted or put together as well as “Blue”, but the electronics are really quite good. The chomping action is silky smooth, easy to use, and work great. The playability is perfect for young kids, who they clearly marketed the toys too. On the other hand, it looks cheap and the legs barely move. I would rate this toy as decent for use as a toy. For collectors, I’ll keep it simple. If you like how it looks go for it, if not, stay away from it.