After the Lion of the Jurassic, allow me to introduce you one of its coevals, potential prey and contender in popularity: Stegosaurus.
Ever since it’s discovery by Othniel Charles Marsh during the infamous Bone Wars, Stegosaurus gained a lot of attention and became one of the most popular dinosaur world wide. Its unique features, especially the extraordinary plates on the back and the spines at the tail made it instantly recognizable and its renditions in the toy world are countless.
Despite all this, a true fan of Stegosaurus finds him- or herself faced with the same problem as with Stegosaurus‘ counterpart Allosaurus: Which is the “perfect” toy model for this species? Is it Kaiyodo’s Dinotales 2 version?
Several Dinotales dinosaurs were released with an according skeleton in the same series and this includes Stegosaurus. The life reconstruction is just short of 9 cm long in direct line and stands 4.5 cm high on the highest plates above the hip, the skeleton is of the same height, but it stands on a flat base and the highest point is above the middle of the back, its lenght is 8 cm in direct line. Minor differences in measurements and stance aside, both look great next to each other.
Kaiyodo’s Stegosaurus stands highly erect on its limbs. Those are muscular, but not as thick as in older reconstructions, but rather represent a modern approach on the animal and a more agile life style than the low slung and dim witted monster of old. The head may be a little too big and articulated fossil finds suggest, that the neck may be too short here. Both models have 17 plates. The number of plates is still under discussion and is likely to be differnt for the several species of Stegosaurus (here, no species name is given), the arrangement is alternated here but in a single row, with no space in between the left and right plates. The number of toes is correct (4 in front, 3 on hind limbs), the spines are angled up and back. For those wondering, the throat armor is present but only recognizable in the skeleton model. In the living animal such a feature would most likely be hidden and completly invisible under the skin. Cheeks are not present in Kaiyodo’s sculpt.
The coloration is rather unusual but not unattractive. A light chocolate brown base color countershades with a light beige underside, the lower legs are black with grey toes. The plates are golden yellow with light orange tips, dark brown stripes run from the plates to the flanks of the Stegosaurus, these are paired with yellowish brown stripes on the flanks. In back light the plates are translucent. The spines are of orange color aswell.
Overall the Kaiyodo Dinotales Series 2 Stegosaurus is a very well made and adorable piece especially when displayed with the skeletal model, in which some of the plates are not connected to the spine as it should be. The intricate detailing on Dinotales figures is simply amazing and so here. The enlarged photos may show seams where the pieces fit together, but in the real figure those seams are barely noticable. Not suitable as toys, those figures are highly recommended for collectors. Though discontinued for way more than a decade, most Dinotales figures can be easily found on ebay, other than that, try to contact forum meber brettnj for any Kaiyodo purchases.
Odd how one of the most finely sculpted and accurate representations is amongst the smallest. Other manufacturers should take note: this is how you stegosaur.
I thought Stegosaurus had five toes on each front foot?