Saturday, 13 April 2013

Life, uh, Finds a Way

The problem with these multi-post spotlights is that once you start, you don't want to cover anything else until the spotlight is done.  But once you've done one or two of the posts, you want to talk about other stuff.  Such is the ADD world of toy collecting.  Any way, I love Jurassic Park!  I love Jurassic Park toys!  Let's go!

I've mainly been covering the human figures from Jurassic Park so far, and while they're personally my main draw into the line, you can't have Jurassic Park without dinosaurs.  Well, you could, but then it would just be "Park".  While that might still be fun, it would be a whole lot less epic.  Now, if you take anything away from my JP posts is should be that I love Spitters.  One single juvenile dilophosaurus had one little scene in the movie, but that's all it took.  These are the most exotic and strange looking dinos in the films, and therefore they are my favorite.  When I was a kid I wanted all the Spitter toys, I had a Spitter keychain, and I bought a framed Spitter hologram that still hangs on the wall in my toy room.  So I mean it when I saw I love these guys.  The two pictured above were released individually, but my friend left one at my house when we were kids and it's remained with me ever since.  So now I have two.  These Spitters come with a spitting feature:  You fill them up with water and make them squirt "venom" by giving them a li'l squeeze.

The spitting is neat.  It sets them apart from the other dinos in the series.  But that's not my main attraction to them.

The frill!  Oh baby, you can't go wrong with the frill.  Well, technically you can since dilophosaurus didn't have a frill in real life (they didn't spit either), but man it looks good.  It's just so... frilly.  This is the deluxe "roaring" dilophosaurus and it was one of the first JP figures I ever got.  The roar is unimportant.  The frill made the sale.  This isn't the only frilled Spitter to come out in the Jurassic Park line (or other lines for that matter), but it's the only one I know of with a removable frill.  I've seen people display its frill either with the slit on the bottom (first pic) or the top (second pic).  I prefer the slit on the bottom and there's a little nub on the back of the neck to keep the frill in place, so I believe it's the right way.  This is the greatest dilophosaurus toy ever made.

The Spitter Family.

Not every Jurassic Park toy represents a dinosaur from the movies or the books.  In fact, not every Jurassic Park toy even represents a dinosaur, like this dimetrodon here.  These guys were around way before the dinosaurs, but they always tend to get thrown into the mix.  Dimetrodon actually had more in common with mammals than dinosaurs, which makes him an enemy of the dinosaurs (at least according to my childhood laws of nature.  It's always dinosaurs vs mammals).  Anyway, this is a nifty figure with a biting action, and I've always thought he had a "wise" look to him.  I never used him as a "wise" character though.  I always just had him eating people.

Ornithosuchus is another non-dinosaur that showed up in the line.  In this case, ornithosuchus was more closely related to crocodiles than dinosaurs, but at least he was around at the same time.  These guys lived during the Triassic period, same as the dilophosaurus.  See, you learn stuff on my blog!  This ornithosuchus came out as part of the Jurassic Park: Dinosaurs line after the other three movie lines had ended.  He has a biting action and comes with some gear to prevent said biting action.

Ornithosuchus also came with some dino-damage.  You can rip his tail off.

Of course, if any dino toy was going to rival my love of the Spitters, it would be this big momma here.  I still remember going out and getting this t-rex for my birthday and feeling like I did pretty well for myself.  It came with a roaring feature, an echoing "stomping" effect, and "lifelike" soft dino skin.  It's also, you know, big.  It's so big I had to use my old set-up for taking the pictures, so unfortunately these pics aren't as nice as the others.

She has a kink in her tail, which comes from being sold in a box that's too small for the figure.  As far as I know, every t-rex figure had this problem, and I saw other versions that came out later on that would have been the same.  It's always bugged me, but what can you do?  They were all like this, so it's not like I got a bad one.  Also, I think one of my brothers must have been trying to simulate blood in her mouth, because there's some kind of reddish-brown stuff in there that I'm still trying to clean out.

Poor Eddie...

The scale works pretty well with the human figures, though the smaller Jurassic Park 3 figures work best with it.  I don't think there was ever a t-rex toy like this in the JP3 line, which is kind of strange.  The human figures shrunk, but they didn't take advantage of it like they should have (with BIG dinos).  Oh well.

I also found these guys while going through my dino drawer (yes, I have a dino drawer).  I think they're from a subset of die-cast metal figures that came out in 2-packs during the original line.  I seem to recall they came with cards as well?  They're much less interesting than the rest of my JP stuff, but I still have them so I figured I'd show them off.  And I know we'll probably never know what colors dinosaurs really were, but I'd bet money that carnotaurus wasn't blue and pink.  On the other hand, that triceratops looks like it could actually exist.

Now, Jurassic Park is 20 years old.  You'd think in all that time the toy lines would eventually disappear for good, but JP toys keep coming back to stores in one form or another.  This next guy is a prototype from a line that was supposed to come out in 2011, but didn't.  The humans would have been packed with larger dinosaurs, and they would have shared G.I. Joe parts!

Look at that guy!  I'm all for the toy line crossover potential of the earlier human figures, but G.I. Joe is one of the main lines I collect, and I would love a series of Jurassic Park figures that use G.I. Joe parts.  This guy was never officially released, but he should have been.  Check out his detailed tattoos!  At the very least he would have made a cool addition to G.I. Joe (well, maybe with a new head, since I think that might be Duke's).  

As far as I know, no one knows what this guy was supposed to be called.  I've seen him listed as "Mercenary", which makes me think "villain" in the JP world, but he obviously works for inGen so he's probably some kind of on-the-level specialist.  I see him as more of a survivalist than a mercenary.  But whatever he is, he does come prepared.

"Real dinosaurs only!"

John Doe here comes with a heavy machine gun, a pickaxe, and a... bombshell to fight dinosaurs with. The gun is cool, but I can totally see this guy taking out dinos with a pickaxe.  I mean, why else would he have it?

For a prototype, this guy's pretty good.  He's fully painted and accessorized, which is better than most prototypes get.  His quality is just *this* side of "good" though.  He feels durable enough and he should be play-worthy, but you can still tell he's not a mass-released figure.  Mostly because of the gash in the back of his neck.  Maybe it's dino-damage?  It really isn't such a good idea to take on a dinosaur with a pickaxe...

That guy's line would have been too much fun, but it was cancelled before it even started.  Now what? Well, life, uh, finds a way.

Jurassic Park is currently back in theaters (in 3D!  I've already gone and seen it.  You should too).  The nice thing about "movie years" (in toy company speak) is that they have a tendency to bring toy lines back from the dead.  Case in point:  The Pachyrhinosaurus Clash.  This set was originally made as part of the cancelled 2011 JP line.  Now Jurassic Park is back in theaters and the toys are back in the stores. Sadly, the tattooed guy is still MIA, but we still got two new figures that share G.I. Joe parts.  So far I've only got this set, but it's only a matter of time till I get the other.

Pachyrhinosaurus is a local boy, primarily found here in my home province of Alberta, Canada.  They didn't actually have horns in their noses (just bony masses), but JP has taken artistic licence with their dinos before (*chough-Spitters*).  But come on, how many pachyrhinosaurus figures are you gonna get?  He's nice and colorful and has some decent articulation.  His legs move (one of which activates his ramming action), the mouth opens and closes, and the head turns from side to side.

He's also got some dino-damage, which can be hidden (just like in the original line!)

Of course, I wouldn't be nearly as excited about these new sets if they didn't come with their G.I. Joe-articulated humans.

Gunner Gordon sounds like he's right out of the "Dino Trackers" era of JP.  Unlike the unreleased tattooed guy who clearly worked for inGen, this guy's "bio" states that he's a mercenary.  He's got no "inGen" to be seen on him, and he looks a little... unhinged.  I see him as more of a villain.  The fact that he's got a Cobra symbol under his vest only adds to that.  Cobra has infiltrated Jurassic Park!  It's hard not to geek out over that.

He comes with some G.I. Joe accessories as well.

And now for something awesome:
It's Pachyrhinosaurus against Cobra the enemy, fighting to save the day!
He never gives up, he's always there, fighting for freedom over land and... just land.
Yo Pachyrhinosaurus!

There are smaller human/dino packs as well that I haven't picked up yet.  They're just repaints of JP3 figures, so you can take them or leave them.  I highly recommend the larger sets though.  At the very least you'll have two new characters to fit into your G.I. Joe world.  There's also some two-packs of repainted JP3 dinos that are decent enough.  These "Dino Battlers" are supposed to be throw-downs between two dinosaurs.  Too bad they're totally out of scale with one another.  Of course this is the only way a velociraptor vs spinosaurus battle would be a fair fight.

This set is my least favorite out of the group, so I don't know why I bought it first.  I stopped by Toys R Us to get some new JP stuff on my way to see the movie, and I think I got this set because liked the yellow around this raptor's eyes.  The other three sets all include a t-rex, which will help me build my team of hover-disc-using, airborne tyrannosaurs (mentioned in the previous post).

All "official" Jurassic Park dinosaur toys have the JP logo on their body, but this is the first time that I know of where the logo appears on both sides of the toy.  So that's new.

Yeah, I definitely need these tyrannosaurs.

Well kids, it's been fun.  I've officially shown off my entire Jurassic Park collection.  I'll probably still get some of the stuff that's in stores right now, and if I do I'll throw them up on the blog to make everything feel complete.  But until then, my JP posts are history!

And that's 50 posts!  Yeah boy!


  1. I love how wide the Dimetrodon's mouth opens! He's like UUUAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!

    Also the opened mouth on the Pachyrhinosaurus makes him look like he something. I dunno. The eyes help as well.

    Anyway, I ALWAYS wanted that big T-Rex! I remember it from the old days and pining for it badly.

  2. The Pachyrhinosaurus objects to Cobra. The Dimetrodon objects to EVERYTHING.

  3. Dinosaur toys... FOREVER!

    1. Yeah! Other toy lines may go extinct, but dinosaur toys (and army men) will never die!