Before we start this review I would like to inform all of you loyal reader that this will be my last review for a while. Simply put: I am taking a break. This review was written and finished before events happened in my life that changed everything. I decided to leave the review as is and wanted to have this published sooner rather than later. I included an epilogue at the end of the review that explains everything for those of you who want to know. Hope you enjoy the review.
A few years back, I did a trio of reviews that spotlighted three iconic dinosaurs from the Nemegt Formation in what is now known as Mongolia in Central Asia. These reviews were written in a way that each stories flow from one story to next , each character’s story intersects with the other. The stars were Deinocheirus (from CollectA), Saurolophus, and Tarbosaurus (both byFavorite), along with a few supporting animals that lived alongside these icons. Back then I lamented the fact that I didn’t have the opportunity to add another icon to the whole trilogy: Therizinosaurus. It did make an appearance in each of these reviews but never the main character.
Today, I’m excited to finally have that opportunity! In a way, this review is like a sequel to those previous reviews with all the actors recasted except for one. PNSO had a strong roster of models for this year (2022) that ranged from the classic favorites to the more obscure, and let’s not forget to mention the polarizing. As the year comes to a close they released an exquisite model of Deinocheirus and following it almost simultaneously a model of Therizinosaurus, the subject of our review today.
The forest is shrouded in mist as dawn breaks. Emerging from the forest depths a Therizinosaurus survey its surroundings. Spreading in front of it is a shallow lake fed by a vast network of streams, on the opposite side is the open plains that stretches for miles. Bordering the lake is a vast forest. This is the domain of Therizinosaurus. It prefers the forest and edges as it provides not just plenty of food but also protection against predators.
Our Therizinosaurus, named Qingge, has her territory extending up to the lake edge which also includes a nice stretch of scrubland between the forest and lake. Here, she finds a spot to forage. In the distance she could hear calls, calls that gets louder and louder. She knows that this calls signals the arrival of the vast migrating herds of Saurolophus and other dinosaurs that make the perilous journey to this place each spring. Back in the late Cretaceous this area was much lusher with vast networks of waterways reminiscent of todays Okavango Delta in Africa.
She settles on her chosen spot along the lake edge and begins to feed, enjoying the peaceful scenery before the chaos descend on this tranquil Eden she call home. A loud splash from the opposite side startles her. She momentarily is on the alert but very soon relaxes once she discovers who made the noise. There on the opposite side, entering the lake is her neighbor Deinocheirus, another huge and very similar odd-looking animal. Her neighbor is harmless for like her, it too is a herbivore that feeds on the abundant aquatic vegetation growing in and around the lake. For a brief moments they eye each other, satisfied that neither one pose a threat, they both resume their breakfast in peace.
First discovered in 1948 the genus was fragmentary and was only known from a few bones that included its huge claws. These claws were huge and impressive earning its name which means ‘scythe lizard’. Therizinosaurus was a huge therizinosauroid with size estimates of 30-33 feet long and up to 16 feet tall! Known for having the longest claws on any land animal, it’s no surprise that at first these impressive claws were thought to belong to a carnivorous dinosaur, perhaps using them to disembody its prey. As it turns out, these claws are an adaptation to feeding on varied vegetation. As for the model, it is right around the 1:35 scale so it fits in nicely with the majority of PNSO models.
PNSO gave us a glimpse of how they would handle feathers on dinosaurs with their Microraptor. Although it was sculpted at a large scale, it gave us a pretty good idea of what PNSO could do, but it wasn’t until the release of Yutyrannusaurs that we finally get a full blown feathering on a large theropod.With this year’s Deinocheirus and Therizinosaurus, PNSO finally showed us just how well they handle feathers.
Therizinosaurus are oddly proportioned dinosaurs that seems to have mixed various body parts from other animals into one gigantic one! Starting with the head which is small in proportion to the rest of the body, PNSO did a fantastic job packing it with so many details despite the small size. Therizinosaurus skull is unknown so any restoration rely heavily on other members of the family where the skull is know.
The small eyes are painted so cleanly and are given an orange color that contrasts with the darker colors around it. The jaw is articulated like many PNSO models, the articulation allows for multiple pose and one can see just how small the head is when the mouth is closed. Despite the small size of the head, details abound both inside the outside the mouth especially the roof and small teeth that are carefully sculpted and painted.
The beak showcase the slightest downturn of the lower half. The nostrils are sculpted nicely and very visible at the top. There are plenty of skin folds as well as various feathers on the head and around the beak. The eyes are small and delicately sculpted and given an orange color that nicely contrasts with the darker brown colors surrounding it as well as the slightest hind of blue hue . There is a nice throat pouch that is skin and is full of small lines and folds that really gives it a nice sense of weight.
The arrival of the migratory herd fill the air with strange sounds and smell. The once peaceful shoreline is now bustling with activity as the thirsty travelers quickly settles into their temporary home and proceed to gorge themselves with the abundant vegetation. While Deinocheirus seems unfazed by the influx of visitors, our Therizinosaurus on the other hand looks unsettled by all the activity and decided to move to a quieter section of the lake. As she settles on a spot, she was quickly interrupted by the arrival of a young female Saurolophus who wanderer away from her herd. Begrudgingly, our Therizinosaurus ignores the intrusion and resumes her interrupted breakfast.
For a theropod, Therizinosaurus has a rather long neck that looks very much at odds with the rest of its body. The model of posed in an upright stance with its neck outstretched and head held high in a rather calm pose. Somehow when it come to figures, Therizinosaurus has been commonly portrayed as in a rather aggressive or defensive pose. Almost all of the models within the last two decades were all give a pose that suggests Therizinosaurus as aggressive. I have to admit that this portrayal has become so widespread that even I, on my original series, portrayed Therizinosaurus as an aggressive dinosaur. So, it’s is very refreshing and welcome that PNSO has given their model a rather calm and neutral pose rather than another defensive one.
The long neck is slightly oriented to one side, enough to give it a sense of movement. Feathers starts right after the eyes, here you see short feathers, as you move down the neck these grows longer and fuller. The feathers are like what we would see on today’s ostrich and other ratites. One of the challenges of feathering is it has the tendency to obscure many of the musculature underneath. But PNSO has done an amazing job of carefully sculpting these feather to follow the contours of the muscles underneath and allowing you to still see and appreciate them. On the model, you can see clearly the skin folds on the back of the neck, and how the loose skin folds are stretched despite being fully covered in feathers.
The body is huge and wide with a pot belly, all easily appreciated in the model. For feathered dinosaurs the challenges in sculpting is that one must be able to differentiate the various shape and sizes of these feathers and at the same time also showcase bare skin and scales. PNSO had done an impressive job doing just that and more. Like the Deinocheirus, the majority of the body is covered with feathers, but there are areas that are not, areas that are bare with just skin and others covered in scales. As you move further down the rotund body, the feathers get thicker and longer giving a shaggy appearance. Therese feathers start shortening as it reaches the belly before disappearing. The belly and underarms area are devoid of feathers, instead these area are bare skin. Abundant and detailed skin folds and creases can be seen as well as tension on the loose skin as they are pulled suggesting elasticity.
The long arms are covered with short feathers with some longer ones adorning the lower half. When compared to the Deinocheirus who’s arm feathers were an exquisite showcase of various feathers size and shape, the feathering on this model is more conservative. At the end of theses arms are the hands where we see those impressive long claws that earned this animal the name ‘scythe lizard’. This dinosaur is the Edward scissor hands of the dinosaurs world. All three fingers are equipped with long claws with the first and second being the longest.
These claws are flat and curve downward with dagger-like tips. PNSO has a phenomenal job sculpting these claws; the right arm and hands are held lower while the left is raised slightly higher. The left fingers are also splayed out beautifully to better appreciate those impressive claws. The color of the claw is a beautiful blend of gray, brown, black that gives them a very natural and organic look. If you look at the palm of the hand you will see the details of the fingers down to the nail bed. PNSO’s attention to detail, even the smallest one is truly impressive.
The wind carried a scent that made the dinosaurs stop whatever they are doing and be on alert. Our Therizinosaurus also picked up the scent and knew who it belonged to: Tarbosaurus. Although large healthy adult Therizinosaurus are rarely attacked, they will often move away from potential predators and avoid a fight unless cornered. So, our Therizinosaurus turns back and heads into the safety of the forest, unknown to her, the lone young female Saurolophus is trapped and is now fighting for her life as the Tarbosaurus make its move. She saw where our Therizinosaurus disappeared and decides to follow her into the forest. With the Tarbosaurus closing in, the young Saurolophus make a last ditch effort and enters the thick forest. She didn’t get very far before she nearly bumped into the Therizinosaurus who’s path was blocked by a large fallen tree.
Our Therizinosaurus has found herself trapped between a fallen log and the charging Tarbosaurus! With no escape route, she turned, let out a loud warning cry and faced the Tarbosaurus. Not expecting this encounter, the Tarbosaurus stopped in his tracks, this momentary surprise was enough to give our Therizinosaurus the upper hand. Letting out the loudest cry she could, she charges the Tarbosaurus with her claws. Although a herbivore , Therizinosaurus would fight and defend itself using its impressive claws. She pushes the Tarbosaurus back, never letting up on her attempts to swat him with those formidable claws. This show of aggression is enough to deter Tarbosaurus and he runs back toward the open plains. This unexpected encounter had unintentionally save the young female Saurolophus from certain death and she make a dash for the open and rejoin her herd.
The legs are short but strong. Once again we see great muscle definition under the feathers, as well as the transition from feathers to scales; this is one area of the body that we see pronounced scales. The feet has the proper weights bearing four toes, something that is not always done in many models of this dinosaur. Therizinosaurus has toes that are weigh-bearing, a unique feature that differs from other theropods of this size and there are trackways believed to be that of a Therizinosaurus that supports this, so it’s really exciting to see PNSO incorporate this in their model. As expected from PNSO, even the toes and pads are rich in delicate and minute details.
The tail is powerful and robust as it should be, and you can appreciate the muscles at the base even under all the shaggy feathers. It is in the tail that we see the longest feathers of varying lengths especially towards the tips giving it a nice weight and shaggy look. The underside of the tail, like the body, is devoid of feathers so you can easily see the tail and all it’s detailing, yup, even the cloaca is well sculpted.
Satisfied that the Tarbosaurus is no longer a threat, our Therizinosaurus emerges from the thick tangle of vegetation and makes its way back to one of her favorite feeding spot at the lake’s edge. IT’s neighbor the Deinocheirus is still out on the lake seemingly oblivious to the drama that just unfolded. In the distance, the young Saurolophus is happily reunited with her herd, her experience no doubt has toughened and has given her a valuable life lessons. Reaching her feeding spot, our Therizinosaurus settles and resumes feeding.
When seen side-by-side with the flamboyant Deinocheirus, it’s easy to say that the colors on this model is drab. But let yourself examine it closer, for only then would you appreciate the rich and complex colors it has. Like so many PNSO models, the colors and paint application has more to it than meets the eye. Various shades and hues of browns dominate and makes the base colors. Mixed in are orange, white, black, gray, and even blue that all seamlessly blends in with each other creating a rich and complex tapestry of colors. The color scheme reminds me of a robin’s which I find very pleasing visually in its simplicity.
PNSO continues to deliver strong and well researched models with each new offering. Coming right on the heels of the fabulous Deinochirus, it’s inevitable to compare the two after all they are both oddball, but despite being less flamboyant, this model has its own charm that holds its own next to its flashier predecessor. These two makes a beautiful companion and complement each other by highlighting their common features as well as distinct differences that make them the true oddball of the theropod world. The amount of detail seen on this model just shows how much PNSO really pays attention to details; there is barely a surface on this model without details. Even the smallest areas are packed with delicate details that make it worth a close examination.
With this model, my search for a definitive version of this bizarre dinosaur is finally over, at least until something more extraordinary comes along. It would be hard to top this model and that’s fine by me. I hope that PNSO would continue to introduce more icons from this area to join Therizinosaurus, Deinocheirus, and Tarbosaurus. My bet that a Saurolophus or even a sauropod is not far behind. PNSO continues to improve with each new model they introduce and it’s exciting to wait and see what their next figure will be. Hope you enjoyed it, thanks for reading.
Epilogue: For those of you who regularly ready my reviews, I guess this is the best time to let you all know that I’m not in a very good spot in life right now. As I write this epilogue, five weeks has passed since we had to say goodbye to our beloved Sophie. She was our constant companion, my shadow in everything and everywhere we went. We got her when she was just 8 weeks old puppy. Some of you who also follow my DT Forum thread may have seen her in many of my behind the scenes thread photobombing my outdoor shots for my various reviews. She was diagnosed with congestive heart failure last October . Unfortunately there is no cure for the disease and it quickly progressed.
Her loss was devastating and I am still not believing what had happened, that she is no longer around to greet me everyday and give me kisses, or on my side on hikes. The devastation took a tremendous toll on my emotional health, more than I ever expected. The outdoor photos in this review are the first one I did since we lost her and it’s not the same and you can tell the difference… to me the life is just isn’t there. IT was difficult to take the photos knowing she is no longer there next to me trying to get in the photo frame.
And just to add more to my challenges, several huge life changing evens are currently unfolding at a very fast pace that I am still not sure it’s happening. These life changes and events has taken all of my free time and requires me to be focused. So, I have no choice but to take a break from my collecting and writing reviews, at least for a short while until I am at a better place. I wish I had more time for review and I had some exciting lineup planned for all of you! But that’s all on hold for now. I do plan on coming back and resuming my reviews but it won’t be for a while, at least for several months. I just wanted all of you to know that so you’re not wondering what happened to me.
For now I would like to thank all of you who followed and read my reviews. Your support and enthusiasm means a lot and it’s what kept me writing more reviews. I hope to come back with better review in the not so distant future, until then, stay safe and healthy . And most of all, don’t forget to enjoy the hobby. We are living at a time right now where our options are just simply amazing and exciting. Don’t focus too much on the little imperfections as these are all distraction for what’s important and exciting. Until we meet again, take care, and wish me luck. Cheers! Bokisaurus.