Review and photos by PhilSauria, edited by Suspsy
Smilodon is another one of those extinct animals that you’d call a staple, appearing in most prehistoric toylines that go beyond dinosaurs, pterosaurs, and marine reptiles to include mammals. This guy and the woolly mammoth are generally the usual suspects when companies producing such a range want to tick the prehistoric mammal box. There have certainly been enough representations of this iconic sabre-toothed cat made, a quick tally came to a total of 21 plastic figures, and that’s not including generic figures, stuffed toys, or little kid products. So not surprisingly, Mojö Fun has a Smilodon in their range, which is the subject of this review.
As far as the pose is concerned, it’s not the most animated or dynamic of the bunch: caught in mid-stride with the unlikely stance of having all four feet on the ground, unless the Smilodon has stopped to react to something, hence the snarl on its face. Ears perked back on a big cat of any era is a piece of body language you ignore at your peril. The eyes are nicely detailed and full of menace. Sculpt-wise, it is quite a stocky figure with well-defined features, nice fur detail, and life-like wrinkles on the brow and muzzle. It is also quite anatomically correct in terms of telling what gender this one is.
Colours are more on the conservative side but still interesting with an orange or tan coat, a lighter yellow on the inside of the legs, white around the muzzle, cheeks, eyebrows, and underside, and darker shading brushed over the face and body to bring out some of the sculpting. This figure has recently been given a makeover and now has a flashy striped coat that I feel does not look as naturalistic as the original, but at least offers a choice if you like the figure, but are not so sold on one colour scheme or the other. But I guess in terms of marketing, such moves allow brands like Mojö to extend the shelf life of their products and in some cases an improved item results. Coincidentally, it is more or less in the size range of many of the other Smilodons out there, measuring 12 cm/4.5 inches in length and 6 cm/2.5 inches in height.
When I began to get serious about paleo figure collecting a few years back and turned my attention to a sampling of what were to my eye the better depictions of this animal, this guy had me hitting the order button to add to the collection. I dare say that there are more accurate and interestingly posed Smilodon figures available but you could do worse than adding this one to your prehistoric mammals shelf. I think that it’s a pretty decent figure.