Tag Archives: Giganotosaurus

Giganotosaurus (Small)(Schleich)

Giganotosaurus is one of the largest known theropods, exceeding even Tyrannosaurus rex in body length, though not in mass. Its razor-sharp teeth were superbly adapted for slicing through the leathery hides of the rebacchisaurs and titanosaurs that lived alongside it in Cretaceous South America.

Today I’ll be examining the 2017 repaint of the small Schleich Giganotosaurus originally released in 2015. This figure is sculpted in a dynamic pose with its feet planted, its tail swinging to the right, its scrawny arms flailing, its head raised to the sky, and its mouth open in a thundering roar. Or more likely a bellow or a croak or a hiss. This gives the toy a height of just over 11 cm and a length of about 16.5 cm.

Whereas the 2015 version was coloured dark red and metallic silver, this one is beige and very dark brown with black wash. Red is used for the sides of the head and the row of triangular spines running from the tip of the snout to the end of the tail. The eyes are black, the mouth is dirty pink, the teeth are dirty white, and the claws are dark brown. Not what you’d call exciting.

The Giganotosaurus‘ skin texture consists mainly of crisscrossing wrinkles, with thicker ones at the joints and on the throats and underbelly. The feet feature the rows of bird-like scales found on virtually every theropod toy. And then there are the large, grid-like scale patterns on either side of the muzzle and the tiny pebbled scales in the orbits and the temporal fenestrae, which are ringed by osteoderms. Finally, the larger spines on the vertebrae have simple grooves carved in them.

On that note, let’s tackle the many inaccuracies plaguing this toy. First, the muzzle is too short, the teeth are too few, and the nostrils are totally absent. The cranium suffers from major shrink wrapping, with the eyes sunken in by about a millimetre. The arms are too large, the wrists are pronated, and the claws are blunt and the wrong shape. And lastly, the feet are grossly oversized and the tail is too short.

With its many anatomical errors and boring colour scheme, this really isn’t a quality toy. Heck, the only reason I ended up with it is because it came in a two-pack with the new Saichania. If you’re looking to snag a good Giganotosaurus toy, then I strongly recommend going with the new one from Safari. Or tracking down the retired Carnegie Collection version. Or even picking up one of Schleich’s Deluxe versions. As for this one, it’s going to be donated to a dinosaur bin in a kindergarten classroom.

Giganotosaurus (Wild Safari by Safari Ltd.)

Kids perspective by William, edited by Laticauda

 

Young and old gather around and see the new king in town.  I present the highly anticipated 2017 Safari Ltd. Giganotosaurus.  Why do I call it the new king?  Sure it doesn’t have the name rex in its name, and its not because it was one of the largest known carnivores the world has seen, in which some estimates have it bigger than the almighty Tyrannosaurus Rex.  It is king because it has raised the bar on how a toy model can capture the  look and attitude of a  voracious carnivore  Lets be honest, the old Safari’s including the Carnegies are good but they just blend into your dinosaur collection, but the 2017 Safari Ltd Giganotosaurus  screams, here I am, look at me, love me.  (How that for a sales pitch!) Could this be better than the 2017 Safari feathered T-Rex?  Does this model deserve the royal crown, or is it a lower rank like a baron, or is it just a commoner?  Lets take a closer look.

About the toy: At 15 in (38.1 cm) long and 4.75 in (12 cm) long it is an imposing figure.  It is bigger than the standard animals in the Wild Safari line.  Its size and scale is on par with the old Carnegies.  The pose is truly something to rave about.  It is so fluid, dynamic, natural and beautiful that it is hard to believe that this isn’t a higher end resign model.   How where they able to get such a great pose?  It has a base. Due to it having a base you will not find over sized feet and hips, or a tripod pose that blemishes many other figures.  I am going to pick on CollectA bases for a moment even though they are not the only offenders.  When compared to CollectA, the base on this model gets a gold star.  Why?  CollectA has plain brown bases with perhaps a leaf imprint or a footprint which are ok but nothing to get excited about.  This base looks like a muddy bank and is part of the over all look of the model.  It is painted with color washing that adds to the visual interest of the base.  The feet are sculpted in such a way that they look like they are actually sinking into the muddy ground.   The back foot is actually pushing off the ground, ready to step forward.  It looks so natural.

The head is beautifully sculpted with its jaw wide.  It is not a shrink wrapped head.  There is an interesting boney ridge on its skull that exaggerates the top of its head.  It runs up the nasal and parietal and surrounds the orbit.  The external nares are huge.  The teeth are individually sculpted and the tongue looks wet due to a glossy finish.

The texture on the figure is rather smooth.  The scales, bumps, and textural over load that many models have are mostly missing on this sculpt.  In reality an animal this big you would not see each individual scale so with that in mind, it is a little more realistic and there is nothing wrong with that.  What they do have are skin folds, wrinkles, and some small bumps.   There is nice muscle tone and some loose skin.  If you look at the hips you can see the muscles bulging that are driving this predator forward.

The paint job is the one major flaw in my opinion.  Its not the base color of greyish blue.  I think that color works really well.  The striping is the first place were the colors start to fail.  The other is in the application.  Here is why.  The light brown stripes looks alright, but the dark brown striping over the top appears rushed and haphazardly painted.  There are gaps in the paint and it doesn’t look right.  From a distance it looks fine, but when you get closer you see how poorly the paint has been applied.  The teeth are white and most likely so are the gums around the teeth.  The rest of the paint job looks nice.  The eyes are great in Carnegie gold. The mouth is pink and the tongue as mentioned earlier, is painted a slick, glossy, wet pink.  Last but not least all the claws on the hands and feet are painted in white.

Play ability and kids perspective:  When I first saw it come out of the box I was blown away, it was amazing to look at.  I wanted to play with it right away.  It looks like a blue tiger with the stripes.  Its colors are blue with blackish brown stripes.  The head looks cool, but it would have been nice if the jaw was movable.  The teeth look as sharp as knives but are safe too touch.  It is not as good as the Carnegie Giganotosaurus which has better colors and it doesn’t have a base.  Since there is a base it can slide around like it is on ice.  The toy is safe to play with.  The tail, arms, and fingers are a little bendy.   I would play with this toy because it looks amazing and it can destroy toy cars.  I would like it better if it had no base so I could use its feet.   Even with the base it can still ambush and attack due to its striped camouflage.   One and half thumbs up for play ability.

Top view comparison of the Carnegie and 2017 Wild Safari Giganotosaurus .

Side view comparison of the Carnegie and 2017 Wild Safari Giganotosaurus.

Overall: I fully recommend this toy!  Why?  I’ll describe it with one word, awesome!  This figure is huge when it is compared to the other Wild Safari dinosaurs.   If you combine that with a pose that is so natural and dynamic you end up with an amazing dinosaur toy.  It is also very accurate to the fossil material.  The base is well done and the model is stable.  I know some people do not like bases, I am one of those people, but for collectors, you will not be disappointed as the base really adds to the figure.  Kids who want to play with this toy on the other hand would probably prefer to have no base, but will still find a way to have fun with this toy.

The only thing I don’t like about this toy is the sloppy paint job.  It is superior to the old Carnegie in every way, including size, with the exception of the paint job.  Look at how amazing the Carnegie Giganotosaurus paint job is, then compare it to this model.  I know you can repaint figures on your own, but it is a shame they can’t replicate the same level of paint application and execution that was done before.   Despite this flaw I think we have a new king and it has a place of honor in my collection.  I think it will find a place of prominence on most collectors shelves.  All hail the King.  Ok, maybe we’ll call it a prince for all the T-Rex fans out there, but its still royalty.

Prehistoric Tube B (CollectA)

Time again to downsize with CollectA’s second tube collection. Like the previous set I reviewed, this one came out in late 2015 and contains no fewer than ten teeny toy dinosaurs and other prehistoric monsters, a couple of them making their debut with CollectA.

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First up is a bantam Amargasaurus, based on the Deluxe version. Measuring slightly over 7 cm long, it’s light green with maroon stripes, yellow for the underbelly, black for the eyes, and dark brown shading on the feet. It is posed in a walking stance with its head held high and the tip of its tail curled. The teeth in the mouth, the twin rows of spines on the neck, and the sails on the back are well-defined and the pitted skin has tiny osteoderms as well as thick wrinkles. In terms of accuracy, this animal looks pretty good, although the neck could probably be a little shorter and the tail could be longer.

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Second is a diminutive Ankylosaurus, coloured dark brown on top and fading to light brown on the underside. The tiny eyes are black and maroon is used for the stripes running parallel down the animal’s head, neck, and back and for the two bosses on the mighty tail club. This 7.5 cm long figure is posed in a defensive stance with its legs planted and its tail raised and swinging from side to side, ready to rumble. I had assumed that this toy was virtually identical to the Deluxe version, but in a number of ways, it’s actually superior. The rib cage is proportionally wider, the limbs are smaller, and there are more osteoderms comprising the armour. The nostrils are still too close together and there are too many toes on the feet, though. The back and limbs have a pitted skin texture while the underbelly is covered in wrinkles. The osteoderms are keeled and the tail club has a knobby feel to it. This is quite a cool little ankylosaur!

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Now we have one of the newcomers to the world of CollectA, a bitty Apatosaurus! At 4 cm tall and 9.5 cm long, it’s the biggest figure in this set. Its main colour is dark grey with a pale pink underbelly, black shading on the feet, and black eyes. The Apatosaurus is sculpted in a classic museum pose with its neck turning to the left and its tail swinging to the right. The tail could afford to be longer, but on the whole, the toy looks reasonably accurate. The skin is pebbly with spiny plates running down the vertebrae, two rows of osteoderms on the back, and wrinkles on the neck and flanks. Despite its size, this Apatosaurus looks beefy and strong. I do wish that it had been Brontosaurus instead (it really is wonderful to have the thunder lizard back), but I think it’s one of the best in the set.

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Next up, a runty Brachiosaurus. Not surprisingly, it’s the tallest figure in the set, standing 7 cm tall and measuring 10.5 cm long. Based upon the second Standard class figure, it’s standing rather stiffly with its head raised to maximum elevation. The main colour is greenish-grey with a light grey underbelly, dark grey shading on the feet, and black eyes. The skin is pebbly all over with a few thick wrinkles around the flanks. The limbs and tail look correctly proportioned, but the neck needs some beefing up. Overall though, it’s an okay rendition of Brachiosaurus.

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Here’s the second newcomer, a pocket-sized Giganotosaurus! Mounted atop a rocky brown base, it measures 9.5 cm long and is coloured light green with a yellow underbelly, dark grey stripes, black eyes, and a pink mouth. Unlike the Tyrannosaurus rex from the other miniature set, the teeth on this carnosaur are painted the same colour as its mouth, which is disappointing. And despite the name printed on the bottom of its base, it is clearly based on the Deluxe Carcharodontosaurus. Perhaps CollectA originally intended to release it as the shark-toothed lizard, but then decided to introduce the giant southern lizard instead. Unfortunately, while Carcharodontosaurus and Giganotosaurus are closely related, there are noticeable anatomical difference between their skulls. As well, this little fellow has inherited the Deluxe’s shrink-wrapped skull and overly wide hips. And to top it off, the paint on the feet has been poorly applied, making it look like the toy is melting. On the positive side, the sculpting itself is undeniably impressive, with sharp teeth and claws, lots of scales and wrinkles, rows of triangular osteoderms, and thick muscles. It’s a ferocious-looking monster in spite of its faults.

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And now here’s a mini Liopleurodon. At only 6.5 cm long, it’s the smallest figure in this set. Like nearly all plastic renditions, its main colours are very dark blue and pale yellow, a result of the animal’s exaggerated appearance in the BBC’s Walking With Dinosaurs. There are also some very faint airbrushed pink patches on the flanks, but the eyes and teeth are unpainted. A pity, but it would have been very difficult to apply paint at this scale. While the front flippers are angled beyond the real animal’s range of motion, on the whole, it’s a pretty accurate pliosaur, with a pitted skin texture and thick wrinkles around its joints. And as with the Mosasaurus in the other set, this little swimmer makes a perfect baby for its Standard class parent.

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Our seventh toy is an undersized Quetzalcoatlus. Standing almost 5.5 cm tall and measuring 8 cm long from the tip of its bill to its heels, this largest of azhdarchids is coloured dusty brown with grey wings, pale yellow on its throat and chest, a black head, yellow crest, pink eyes and mouth, and light blue on the back of its neck. Its head is raised high and tilting to the left, but unlike the larger version, there’s no baby Alamosaurus struggling helplessly in its bill. The neck and body are covered in pycnofibres and the folded wings are wrinkled. The bill is slightly warped, but overall, this is a very good rendition. As I’ve said many times now, I love walking pterosaur figures.

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Behold, a wee Spinosaurus, only about 9.5 cm long. Based on the famous and controversial Ibrahim/Sereno reconstruction, this finned fish eater is striding slowly along on all fours, its left paw raised and its long tail swinging well to the right. The main colour is sandy beige with faint patches of bright green, black stripes on the sail, airbrushed grey on the front claws, black eyes, and a pink mouth. Like the Giganotosaurus, the Spinosaurus‘ tiny teeth lack paint detail, but at least they’re not pink. The sculpting detail is excellent, with fine scales and osteoderms on the body, ribs on the sail, long, sharp claws on the hands, and a crocodilian-like tail. This is definitely one of the best figures in this set.

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A scrubby Torosaurus is our ninth toy. The perforated lizard is just over 3 cm tall due to its mighty frill and just over 6.5 cm long from the tips of its brow horns to the end of its tail. The main colour is pumpkin orange with dark brown accents on the head, horns, and body. The frill features white wash and black “eyes” shaped like inverted teardrops. The tiny eyes are black as well. Aside from the smooth horns, the entire animal is covered in fine pebbled scales with just a few wrinkles around the joints and belly. Unlike the Standard class toy, this Torosaurus‘ brow horns are correctly curved instead of straight. But sadly, the little fellow has all the same issues as his big brother: a snout that’s too long, a lack of epoccipitals on the rather flattened frill, and limbs that are far too lanky for any chasmosaurine.

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Finally, I give you this Lilliputian Velociraptor. It measures nearly 7 cm long and is quite possibly the blandest-looking dromaeosaur figure I’ve ever seen. It is coloured beige all over with darker patches on its tail, limbs, and head, as well as black eyes and a pink mouth. Due to its size, it is moulded onto a small earthen base. On the plus side, despite the fact that it is based on the aging Deluxe version, it’s got more accurate proportions, with a smaller head and a longer tail. The head, hands, and feet are scaly, but the rest of the Velociraptor is nice and feathery, complete with a large fan at the end of the tail. The wrists are properly aligned and the claws and teeth make this animal look like quite a savage predator. Of course, any dinophile worth his or her salt knows full well that this raptor doesn’t have nearly enough plumage. Still, any feathered dinosaur is welcome in my book.

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Overall, while I like the other miniature set better, this one is still quite good. Granted, some of the figures have accuracy issues, but they’re all rather endearing little toys. And considering that you’re getting ten of them for a relatively low price, I can’t see many people not enjoying them. Plus as I mentioned in my other review, the durable plastic case means that you can easily and safely take this set on the road with you. Recommended.

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This marks my second year anniversary as a reviewer for the Dinosaur Toy Blog! As always, thanks go out to Dr. Adam S. Smith and everyone who’s been enjoying my work. Here’s to another year! 🙂