Review and photos by Faelrin, edited by Suspsy
It has been 17 years since Jurassic Park III first came out, and with it, the controversial Spinosaurus. It was quite a surprise when it was first revealed that Mattel was going to be releasing one as part of the Legacy Collection. Yet again, the Spinosaurus has unfortunately found itself in another controversy. Thanks to the high demand, the poor worldwide distribution of the Legacy Collection figures, and, in the case of those in the states, Target refusing to stock it after the brief period it was available online, most collectors were left without one, or had to pay much more than the toy’s intended worth for a time. Although now it seems they are now restocking the toy finally–after promising they would not be carrying it again–so you’d better get it while the getting is good. But enough of that, onto the figure itself.
The Spinosaurus is rather large, and fittingly so since it is in scale with the rest of Mattel’s JW line. It is 10 inches/25cm tall at the tip of the sail and 21 inches/53cm in length, if left in a neutral pose. Most of the figure is made out of a hard, hollow plastic, but the sail is a rubbery material. The color scheme itself is pretty simplistic compared to the beautifully painted maquette for the film’s creature, but it works fine. There is brick red along the head, sail and down the tail. There is also a white stripe along the sail and some white on the belly. The bulk of the toy is just a grey color, with some silver-like airbrushing on the sides and striping on the legs. Unlike most of Mattel’s other JW figures, both the front and hind claws have been painted (including the dew claws). The eyes have that iconic yellow-green color, with black slit pupils, and the mouth and tongue are painted with some glossy pink colors. The teeth are painted in the same off white color as the rest of the line’s predatory creatures.
The skin texture is very detailed and the back of the neck and tail feature some crocodilian-like scutes, which the Spinosaurus in JPIII also had. The Spinosaurus has about the same amount of articulation as the Extreme Chomping Tyrannosaurus (and its numerous repaints and retools, including an upcming green 2019 one that may pair well with this toy to recreate the scene of that controversial duel, as it would be about the right size as that one). The arms can rotate around most of the way, and can move slightly up and down, but not as effectively as on the Roarivores and some of the smaller Battle Damage figures. The neck joints do not offer the same wide range of movement on the Extreme Chomping Tyrannosaurus due to being designed rather close together. The legs can move in and out and up and down, and the joints near the ankles can rotate. The tail is also able to rotate and move up and down. The Spinosaurus features the same chomping action as the Tyrannosaurus, with the press of the button on its back. The tongue does not stick out like prior versions of the Tyrannosaurus (newer versions of this figure have this corrected), and drops down after the mouth is opened.
Ultimately, this is a rather well done figure, though not perfect, and a nice surprise since the last time there was a JP Spinosaurus toy at this size was the rare animatronic one made by Hasbro. I would say for fans of the JP Spinosaurus, Mattel’s line, or anyone who is attempting to put together a collection of film species toys (like me), then this will be a must-have, and will certainly be harder to get as time goes on. Unfortunately, for most of the world, one will need to look on eBay if not elsewhere, and hope they can find one being sold that’s not from a scalper and their absurdly inflated prices. These were readily available from Smyths Toys in the UK, although I don’t know if they currently are since I am in the US. I can only hope that Mattel will give collectors another chance at getting one of these in the future, but of course, there is no guarantee.