Review and images by PhilSauria, edited by Suspsy
Brontosaurus is an animal with a history plagued by a series of bouts of mistaken identity with the earlier named Apatosaurus since its naming in 1879 by Othniel Charles Marsh, the 1905 mount at the American Museum of Natural History being given the wrong skull (based on Camarasaurus, a species that was itself also known for a time by another name, Morosaurus), and the mount given a name plate that said ‘Brontosaurus.’ We have Henry Fairfield Osborn to thank for those last two decisions. They seem to have cemented the name and look of Brontosaurus in popular culture for over 100 years (the term ‘Bronto Burger’ in The Flintstones has a much more alliterative ring than ‘Apato Burger,’ for instance). Even when the first Apatosaurus skull was found in 1909, Osborn wasn’t having it and things stayed as they were until 1979 when this poor animal was finally given its correct skull. However, it was not until 2015 that science acknowledged Brontosaurus and Apatosaurus as distinct species and the popular press exclaimed that “Brontosaurus is back!”
So here we are another three years down the track and we finally have a dinosaur figure that can it seems be correctly labelled Brontosaurus, complete with its long diplodocid facial features; no more boxy heads. And it has been worth the wait – what a magnificent figure it is! Personally, I’d rather that it was larger, though. Sauropods were big even by dinosaur standards, so I always feel they are best served with more plastic being expended on them. Brachiosaurus seems to be about the only sauropod to be consistently rendered in a larger size by the various brands. Still, for the size that this toy is, there is a lot of detail packed into it, as is typical of CollectA these days. It measures 28 cm/11 inches long and about 8.5 cm/3.5 inches high, depending on the amount of curl in the tail of your specimen and if you take the height from the head or that tail curl. The nearest sauropod in size to this Brontosaurus would be the Kabaya Seismosaurus.
The color scheme is – to make a long story short – brown. Very pale brown or creamy underside and brown on the rest of the figure aside from pale grey for the spines running down the back and tail and some red around the eyes. The spines are possibly a bit of artistic license and may have been inspired by the inclusion on some Diplodocus restorations and paleoart but they do lend it a distinctive look. Perhaps an addition to distinguish it from the Apatosaurus toys already out there. In terms of detail, the body is covered in the fine scales typical of CollectA sauropods, of which there are now quite a few. The open mouth is filled with plenty of teeth and the spines have fine ridges on them. The feet are quite correct in terms of sauropod anatomy, with three large claws on the rear pair and those large, sideways-projecting claws on the front one. If I had a dollar for every sauropod out there walking around on or standing about with slightly modified elephant feet!
The rest of the Brontosaurus‘ anatomy is pretty much spot on as well, and the neck is carried in more or less the agreed position typical of diplodocids and not shooting up too high in periscope fashion as is the norm in many of the old school sauropods filling various toy boxes.
Space-conscious collectors would be well served by this compact and very well-realized figure. This one gets a highly recommended rating from me and the acquisition of which has made me one very happy sauropod collector.
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