If you like your dinosaurs well detailed, accurately sculpted, and shrink wrapped in true 1990’s fashion than look no further than Favorite’s latest take on some of our favorite classic dinosaurs. Favorite Co. Ltd. is a Japanese company formally known as Kinto. Their first series of dinosaurs consisted of a line of well-made and mostly accurate dinosaurs, all popular classics, none of them obscure. They then released a second set of dinosaurs, all of which were the same dinosaurs they already made. As it stands they now occasionally produce obscure dinosaurs but only in limited quantities’ as museum exclusives. What prehistoric animals they do mass produce are all non-dinosaurian and again, they typically stick to popular genera. It’s a strange business model for sure and I know I’m not the only one that laments the fact that they don’t produce more dinosaurs for the general populace. Since I’m generally unable to get a hold of their more interesting pieces like Saurolophus and Tarbosaurus I’m forced to buy yet another model of Allosaurus. In a world with endless Allosaurus choices, including the legendary Papo model, does this one have anything unique to offer that makes it stand out from the rest?
Well, since this model is sculpted by Kazunari Araki there are a few things you can expect right out the gate. Accuracy, detail, emaciated dinosaurs. Addressing the shrink wrapping is necessary these days. This is no longer the late 80’s and 90’s where people liked their dinosaurs as skinny as their super models. Heroin chic is out and we like our dinosaurs a little fuller bodied and healthier looking. It was the common look for dinosaurs of the time, popularized by artists like Gregory Paul, but in our modern world it seems there is no greater blasphemy than shrink wrapping dinosaurs. Personally, I still like the look; these are the dinosaur depictions I grew up with. You might even call them retro and as off putting as they are to some they’re not necessarily inaccurate. So while I may seem like I’m about to give this Allosaurus a negative review, I’m not. I did buy it after all and lord knows I don’t need to put another Allosaurus on my shelf without good reason.
Aside from the gaunt appearance the model is a well-made piece. It’s accurately proportioned and well researched. It comes with a detachable base which means it stands steady on two feet without being awkwardly posed or with the aid of large feet or wide hips. And that is perhaps its biggest selling point. The model stands just over 3” tall and is 8” long.
The color choices here are garish and toy like. I don’t mind it personally but it’s not very realistic. The Favorite Series 2 models are plagued by outlandish and unrealistic paint jobs, often with sloppy application. This is a shame because the models do actually look quite good. The Allosaurus is orange with dark orange stripes and a lighter shade of orange on the underside. You can almost imagine this predator living in a dry and sunny scrub-land type environment but even if the color choices worked the model is far too “shiny” to allow it to look believable. The latest Favorite models all have a glossy finish that only serves to make the model look more like a toy. It goes without saying that for those skilled enough, these models would be greatly improved with a custom paint job.
Color choice aside the detail work here is immediately noticeable. The dinosaur may be thin but as a result you can see a lot of the underlining musculature and anatomy. The scapula, rib cage, pubis bone and ilium are visible under the skin, accurately placed and proportioned. The legs are especially well muscled and athletic looking with the calf muscle in particular showing up prominently, again harkening back to Greg Paul’s dinosaur representations. The dinosaur is sculpted without a lot of fancy adornments or frills save for a line of osteoderms running along the back. Although not much artistic license is taken with the sculpture it does accurately show us the features we’ve come to associate with Allosaurus. That said, the thumb claw on this model matches the scale of the other claws when we know Allosaurus had thumb claws proportionately larger than the rest. The tail is also way too thin with no visible caudofemoralis muscle. But again, this is typical for 90’s style dinosaurs. The problem here is that this model was made in 2013.
And I guess that’s really the big issue here. In an era where toy companies are trying to make their dinosaurs more modern, more believable and taking artistic risks, something like this Allosaurus comes across as a little underwhelming. I can appreciate it because it is well made, and Allosaurus is one of my favorite theropods. There is no denying the sculptor has talent and Favorite makes some great products. I truly hope Favorite gives us some more daring sculpts of some more obscure dinosaurs but that doesn’t seem to be the direction they’re headed. Good thing then that we have so many other companies taking up the challenge. For fans of the genus or those already lacking a decent Allosaurus I recommend considering this model. The only real flaw here is the lack of more meat on the bones. Otherwise this is one of the better Allosaurus models to come out in recent memory.