There’s no real debate about it. The Mattel Jurassic World Mosasaurus is still one of the line’s best toys. Pushing 30” in length and covered in rubbery “real feel” material, it has also been released and re-released consistently over the last 5 years. A testament to its quality. As such, I felt little need to get any of Mattel’s other visually similar marine reptiles. Not that Mattel has released many of them, but the recent Liopleurodon was an easy pass for me, and I thought the Kronosaurus would be too. That is until all the positive reviews started rolling in. I still thought I could resist it, but then it went on sale and here we are.
The Mattel Kronosaurus is a Wild Roar figure in their Dino Trackers line. Once again, like the last two Dino Tracker reviews I did, no tracking gear comes with this figure. Making the designation moot. The only toys that appear to come with tracking gear are the Gigantic Trackers; a Stegosaurus and Sinotyrannus. The packaging indicates that the Kronosaurus lives in the marine biome. Shocking! Well don’t expect your kids to be able use this toy in a marine biome (or bathtub) because it’s electronic and submerging it will break it. Mattel making their marine reptiles electronic is a severe oversight. Water friendly marine reptiles seems like a no brainer.
The action feature on this toy is engaged via a sliding button on the back. The head of the toy twists left and right, opens the mouth, and lets out a series of unrealistic roars. This action feature could easily exist without the sounds, and it would be preferable as the toy is extremely loud and easily triggered. There’s articulation as well. The flippers are all on hinged ball joints that allow you to twist and turn then any which way. The tail also rotates around, for whatever reason.
The Mattel Kronosaurus measures 12.25” (31.115 cm) while the actual Kronosaurus is estimated to have measured 30-36’ (9-10.9 meter). This puts the toy at about 1/35 in scale. Pitifully small next to the 1/18 humans. Just for fun we can also use just the head to determine the scale. Kronosaurus had a skull 7.3-9.4’ (2.21–2.85 meters) while this toy has a head about 3.25” long. That means the head is also 1/35 in scale, so at least Mattel got their proportions correct.
Touching briefly on accuracy, Mattel does a decent job here, at least to this layman. The head scales well with the body, as we saw, and the body itself appears healthy and robust without a lot of unnecessary giant scutes, frills, or spikes like what we see on the Mosasaurus. Being streamlined is important for marine predators and all that junk that adds drag, while cool looking, is not particularly realistic.
A fluke is present on the tail, the addition of which is speculative but in vogue these days. Since Kronosaurus used its flippers for propulsion it probably didn’t need a fluke but the presence of it makes the toy a tad bit more visually interesting. The posterior flippers should be larger than the anterior. Those on the toy are about the same length but those in the back are broader.
The most obvious inaccuracy is with the dentition. Kronosaurus should have a specific arrangement of different sized teeth (I won’t get into it) but this toy just has generic, blunt, interlocking teeth that extend too far past the maxilla. The roof of the mouth is nicely textured with ridges and folds, but it appears that there was an attempt to sculpt a second set of teeth on the roof of the mouth. This is a feature of Mosasaurus, not Kronosaurus, but they’re not painted and barely noticeable anyway. Overall, not a bad effort from Mattel.
Although not decorated with a bunch of bits and bobs this Kronosaurus still has an exceptional level of detail afforded to it. Fine pebbly scales are present on the jaw but most of the body is devoid of scales, which is fine. Instead, you get some skin folds and wrinkles, particularly on the underside. And across the entire body are random deep gouges that make the figure appear battle worn.
Most noteworthy is the addition of barnacles across the entire figure. They are minuscule but unmistakable for what they are, being round raised bumps with a small divot in their center, which in life is where the body would be located. How realistic is their presence? I don’t know, but barnacles are known to attach themselves to animals including whales, sea turtles, sea snakes, crustaceans, and in at least one instance, a human hand! Realistic on a Kronosaurus or not, their addition adds a lot of personality, texture, and intrigue to this toy.
The Mattel Kronosaurus has a paintjob reminiscent of the Liopleurodon from Walking with Dinosaurs. A color scheme that despite looking rather fetching, has been used way too often over the last 20 years. That said, at least it is well done. It looks like a finished paintjob, which is high praise for Mattel. And since there are no claws, you don’t have to worry about those being unpainted.
The figure is black above and off-white below with the black coloration bleeding down the sides. All the flippers also have a two-toned paintjob, and it would have been very easy for Mattel to cast the flippers in one color or the other. A metallic blue swath of color runs across each eye. The eyes are yellow with round, black pupils. The teeth are white, and the inside of the mouth is pink. I kind of wish the barnacles were painted but that would be an unrealistic thing to expect.
I very nearly missed out on the Mattel Kronosaurus and it would have been a shame if I had. Aside from the Mosasaurus this is Mattel’s best marine reptile to date. In many respects it is better than the Mosasaurus. Too many blunted teeth are about the only criticism I have but if you collect Mattel toys then you know what to expect and already accept that sort of thing. And if you have kids then it is good to know that this aquatic animal cannot be played with in water.
The Mattel Kronosaurus is currently available but is being phased out quickly. Right now, it is on clearance in most places. Originally costing about $20, it is now on sale for under $10 and is definitely worth that price. I had other reviews planned before the Kronosaurus but decided to prioritize this one before it becomes scarce. Hopefully you’re able to land one in time.