Common legends says, that the first remains of Iguanodon were discovered in the heaps of a road cut by the wife of an English country doctor. Now, this may be true or not, but the doctor, Gideon Mantell, described the species in 1825 on basis of just a few teeth. Not a lot to restore a full animal and so it is no wonder that the first reconstructions were a far shot from the real real animal. Somewhen during the late 1870`s well preserved remains of quiet a few specimen were discovered in a Belgium coal mine and hence the scientific reconstruction got a great deal forward. As is the nature with science, especially with the science of extinct species, there’s still a fair deal of stuff we can not say with certainty about Iguanodon. However, there’s a lot we know about this – by today’s standards – weird animal. With this in mind, let’s have a look at this rendition by PNSO.
With its backpack full of history, Iguandon has seen its share of toys during the decades and some quite good ones, at least when viewed by the time they were released. Iguanodon‘s toy history represents quiet well the history of its reconstruction. In 2018 CollectA released a figure so rigorously scientifically reconstructed, that it could serve as an excellent museums replica. Can PNSO Harvey pull it of its throne?
Hard facts: Harvey measures 27.5 cm in straight line and stands 9.8 cm at its ridge. I unfortunately do not have CollectA’s at hand right now, as both are of same size, CollectA’s just raises its head higher. As with all PNSO figures I have seen yet (hence I have in my collection), the figure is of supreme quality, well sculpted and molded and well painted. For its price tag one could ask for a more intricate paint job, however, I find the color and pattern quite well fitting for such an animal. The sculpting detail is just great, the body decked in mostly very fine scales, so minuscule that they can hardly be seen on parts of the animal and so fitting for an animal in the 10 metres size range. A few bigger scales or tubercles are scattered above the brows, hips and back. On a side note, Harvey comes well packed in a luxury box that also contains an envelope with activites for kids, containing a lot of posters of different species and seemingly varying artists.
But let’s get to the elephant in the room, well both of them to be fair. The one elephant is the shape of its head. Now, heads in dinosaurs are quite often not “well” shaped in the sense of not being appropriately fleshed out. The top of the heads of vertebrates are however seldom thickly fleshed, so they give a good impression of the contour of the skull. So while no species is assigned to Harvey, its head is clearly not that of an approved Iguanodon species with its distinct forehead but rather that of the closely related Mantellisaurus. Unfortunatly, Harvey may not serve well as a stand in for Mantellisaurus as its front limbs are of the correct size for Iguandon and so too long for Mantellisaurus.
The second elephant are the forelimbs themselves. The palms of the hands face inwards and back, but trackways assigned to Iguanodon show that the imprints of the fingers and nails are in straight line with the feet, hence the palms should face completely inwards, facing each other.
That being said, I personally find the forelimbs of Harvey more convincing than the one’s in CollectA’s. The sculpt transports the weight and natural movement of limbs and joints under physical strain really well. A small downer here may be the fact, that the popular and opposable “thumb” finger of the right hand is thicker than on the left hand and resembles more the real spike of the thumb.
If Iguanodon had cheeks is also a question to debate and may well never be answered finally. When judged by its “batteries” of teeth, cheeks would seems consequential, but Iguanodon is named after its teeth which resemble those of recent Iguana species which, in fact, do not chew but bite off and swallow and so have no cheeks. Also, Iguanodon teeth seem to lack the wear that comes from grinding teeth on each other when chewing.
Overall, PNSO’s Harvey is a great figure with a very authentic and believable look. The calm pose underlines the heft of the living thing and the intricate detailing convinces from viewing distance aswell as on close inspection. I personally can put aside its sure inaccuracies for this look. However, if 70 bucks, three times the price of the CollectA Iguanodon are justified for that, is a matter everyone has to deceide on his or her own.
Honestly I think this is the best Iguanodon ever made, but I have no desire to pay more than its worth, for a box and pile of paperwork. Maybe if it’s ever on sale. PNSO should really consider doing a budget version of these without the extras. It seems like it would only make them more money. All well, great review!
It’s an impressive Iguanodon, but as with all other PNSO products lately, the price tag kills it for me.
I have this figure and it’s an impressive sculpt and I’m glad that I acquired it. Having said this, i cannot yet say if this is the best Iguanodon figure to date, despite it’s excellent qualities. The reason is simply that it’s not certain that this is truly an Iguanodon. It is quite puzzling as to why PNSO chose a skull type that resembles a Mantellisaurus so closely as to virtually identical. Since Mantellisaurus was separated from Iguanodon, this cranial configuration has been generally associated with the former. Admittedly, there are Iguanodon bernissartensis skulls that approach the shape of the PNSO one, but I haven’t yet found one as close as the typical Mantellisaurus type that seems to have been used here. It seems a strange choice by PNSO, one that apparently can be interpreted as a chimera.
lovely colour scheme and sculpt but PNSO won’t get 5 stars from me until they start making their heads more proportional in size to their bodies, instead of oversized.
I’ll go further and add that this may just be the best PNSO dino figure to date (and that is saying a mouthful). Its not as pretty or as colourful as, say, the Sinoceratops (which is still my favorite PNSO), or the Corythosaurus, but darn impressive in its own right!
Without a doubt, the PNSO iguanodon is the best of its kind to date. With that I say everything.