Review and photos by Takama, edited by Suspsy
A long time ago in the year 2005, I was hospitalized for 103 days due to a serious heart condition that nearly claimed my life at the young age of twelve. As a result of this issue, I was eligible for a wish to be granted by the Make A Wish Foundation of America, and it is thanks to them that the subject of today’s review is a part of my collection. In 2007, I got to stay in a 5-star hotel in what it is perhaps the richest part of London, England, and as we explored the foreign city (looking like your average American tourists), we came across a toy shop with some dinosaurs for sale. Naturally, I had to get one of these dinosaurs, but I was never able to find out who made them until I found the Dinosaur Toy Forum in 2010.
When people think of Ceratosaurus toys, they usually think of great models like the Safari and Battat models, but there is one model that is never given any recognition despite being a decent rendition of the species, and that model is the AAA Ceratosaurus. It was arguably one of the best models of the animal at the time I purchased it back in 2007. The green colouring may remind most of you of the original Battat model before it got repainted for a new generation, and this is indeed not a coincidence. Some of AAA’s dinosaurs did borrow colors from the original Battats, the most obvious of which would be their Tyrannosaurus rex.
AAA is known for making very durable toys made to to take the most brutal of beatings by rowdy kids, and they are most famous for their life-sized reptile replicas. When it comes to dinosaurs, they seem to lack the skill to create anything on parr with the likes of Battat, despite borrowing their colour schemes. But the Ceratosaurus is indeed one of their better efforts.
The skull of the animal is almost spot on, and the only drawback I can see is that the teeth are sculpted too uniformly. The whole model suggests that this is a lean predator, which may not be 100% correct since Ceratosaurus is often seen as a robust animal as depicted in the Dinotales model. Other issues include pronation of both hands and the absence of signature armour on the animal’s back. Instead, there is only a row of spines along the vertebrae. Upon looking at the figure’s feet, I can’t help but notice that it seems to stand on what would appear to be its ankles. Connection between the bottom of the legs and the toes makes the feet look unnatural, but as a result, the model can stand on its own two feet without issue
In terms of detail, this model is not excellent, but individual scales were clearly sculpted on the model. In some areas, the scales are replaced with wrinkles. The hand claws are sharp, but this is due to a little bit of plastic being left over from the molding process. The teeth are blunted for child safety, as is the dinosaur’s signature horn.
Overall, this is a fairly decent model. It is certainly better than AAA’s other dinosaurs, but in truth, this is probably due to them taking after Battat. The hands may be pronated, but the number of fingers is spot on. Also the paint work is acceptable with little to no runoff in some places. Unlike the Battat model, this one has its mouth open with a dirty pink tongue at rest.
If you want one, you most likely be able to find it on eBay. As of the time of this writing, there are a couple available from sellers in the UK.