Kaiyodo Dinotales – despite their significance and popularity amongst collectors, the famous Japanese series still lacks a lot of reviews on the blog. I myself own several figures still to be reviewed, but my collection is far from being complete. If you have not seen a Dinotales model in person yet, go get one of your choice and let yourself be hooked up on that magnificent series. So far so good, but let’s go into details so you know why I praise the series….
For today’s review I choosed everyone’s favorite Jurassic theropod, Allosaurus. Regardless of its popularity and its number of appearances as toy figure in several lines, one is still hard pressed to name the “perfect” Allosaurus figure. Some may name the Safari, others Papo’s or Favorite’s but all of them lack or exaggerate one or another key feature of the Lion of the Jurassic, shrinkwrapping is one, the oblivious enlarged claw another. Let’s see what Kaiyodo brings to the table….
In the Dinotales Series 2 Kaiyodo released three “specimen” of Allosaurus, a life reconstruction of the animal, a skeletal model and a skull. The life reconstruction model measures 10 cm in line, approx. 11.5 cm along the spine and stands 3.5 cm tall with base, the skeleton, being in almost the exact same stance comes with approximately the same measures. It’s a very nice featureof the series that several dinosaur models were released as life reconstruction and skeletal model. The skull measures 3.8 cm in lenght, 2.6 cm in height and 1.6 cm in width and appeares way more massive than the delicate figures. Both, the skull and skeleton are very true to modern skeletal reconstructions of Allosaurus, the skeleton is just missing the belly ribs, but in this scale, such a feature would have made a particular fragile addition to the model. Seeing how Kaiyodo managed to get the tiny claws, tail tips or horns (on other figures of the line), they could have added them though I guess.
Nevertheless, all three models are nothing short of magnificent in their level of detail. Poorest may be the skull because of the paint job on the teeth, but other than this the sculpt is very good. Not all openings are really open, but for a model this small, all important details are true to the real deal. The skeletal and life reconstruct model show Allosaurus in a calm walking pose, the stride length of the skeleton is wider than on the life reconstruction, also the tail is swayed a tad bit differently and the head turned more. Still both look pretty good together and the skeleton shows, that Kaiyodo’s sculptor was aware of the enlarged thumb claw. Unfortunately however, this feature was not translated to the life reconstruction. On the bright side, this is the only real shortcoming of this figure, the lack of a deepened hip region as result of a protruding ischium may be another. This however will probably go unnoticed by most collectors and the overall appearance of the figure allows such lacks easily to be ignored.
The color scheme is not unattractive but subdued and a far cry from gaudy schemes like that of Allosaurus‘s coeval Ceratosaurus. The underside shines in titanium white, the remaining parts of the body in olive green from darker to lighter shades. A fractional pale green line bordered by an even thinner black line runs from the antorbital fenestra to the middle of the tail. Several more horizontal pale green lines complete the pattern.
Kaiyodo released another version of Allosaurus in the Dinotales Series 6, but the one reviewed here is superior in my opinion, as the whole shape of the skull is way closer to the fossil material, the position of the hands isn’t as exaggerated towards the raptor/bird stance and the figure has no overbite but lips with the teeth just visible as the mouth is kept slightly open. So while still not the perfect one, Kaiyodo’s Allosaurus is a great and worthy addition to a collection.
As with all Kaiyodo Dinotales, these figures do not fare well as toys. They are assembled from several parts with a near perfect plug and socket technique that leaves only very minor seams. The plastic is brittle and rather snaps than bends, but I guess that’s the price for the outstanding detailing of the sculpts that are visible on each of those small figures.
You can find the figure, skeleton and skull on ebay, most times single, but somestimes as a set. Another way I’d recommend would be to contact forum member brettnj.