Monday, February 25, 2013

Thunder Lizard

You know what I love? Dinosaur toys. You know what I barely have any of? Dinosaur toys. I think it's time I remedied that.

I've looked in on the magical, darwinian worlds of Papo, Safari, and Schliech for years, but the ticket price always made me balk at the door. Ten bucks for a 4 inch dino always felt wrong when I could get a deluxe Transformer for the same price. But in this brave new economy, it's about what I'm paying for everything else anyway, so bring on the therapods!

I've been window shopping, ogling and analyzing which dinos to add to my tiny plastic herd. The Ceratopsian family is well represented, with Collecta's gorgeous Torosaurus, and Papo's Styracosaur and Pachyrhinosaurus. Papo also makes great carnivores like the now classic T. Rex and Velociraptor, plus the awesome Safari Giganotosaurus. But one old champion of the lost world I just couldn't find a good specimen of: Brachiosaurus, lord of the plains!

No matter what, something just felt off about all of the popular versions, too bent, too aggressive, too skinny... and then it hit me. I have a Brachiosaur!

...She just wasn't the prettiest. Don't get me wrong, I love the mold, the texture, the pose. What I don't love is the cheap bootleg-special paint job.To leave such beautiful bone structure hidden under cheap dollar store make up would be a crime against paleolithic fashion. Extreme dinosaur make-over: Cretacious edition!

Look! Look what I have created! With naught but acrylic paint (and a gallon of frog DNA) I have breathed new life into this sad, unloved Sauropod! What was made to be cheap junk, I have made into a masterpiece! ...or maybe just a grown man's plaything, but hey, at least I won't flush her down the toilet just to see what happens.

I have to say, even I was surprised just how well she cleaned up. I'm really curious who originally sculpted this, because the mold hidden under that original slop-job is fantastic! The shape of the eye hidden under that giant yellow splotch is so great, and the detail on the muscular ribs is so good. This is definitely my favorite Brach I've seen. Nice and placid, but not so much that she can't hold her own in a fight. 

 I wish I could give people a maker or manufacturer so they can hunt her down and give her the Jurassic Park paint job themselves, but she has zero identifying marks besides her name and the year 2000. If by some chance you can find her, by all means jump on it, because this was so easy and turned out so well it was just meant to be. My love, she is a 30 ton land-beast.
 Special credit to Jim-Bob Wan, whose wanton hobby spending I live vicariously through, and whose Brachiosaur color scheme I... "borrowed ideas" from.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Dilophosaur Don't Give a Damn

What do you do when you forget about your website for three months? Take pictures of dinosaurs.

 That's what my grandfather taught me, anyway. Why are they all Dilophosaurus? Because he's my favorite, that's why. Why would I take pictures of your favorite dinosaur? I don't even know you.

Just look at him. He's adorable! Who wouldn't take pictures of that toothy mug? I took these pictures during a sloppy, cold ice storm, and he still is just dripping with smug. He knows he's the top-shelf, 3 star, A-class dinosaur of choice for the wealthy and hedonistic.

And before even start with the "Boooo Jurassic park neck frills and acid spit and inaccuracy boohoohoooooo!"  consider this: Has a Dilophosaur ever told you to get your hairless monkey self off the couch and back up a tree? No? Then let him live his life! Isla Nublar is a prejudice free zone. Unless you're a fat computer programmer trying to start a jeep.

And can I just point out: This a Jurassic Park 3 figure. The Dilophosaur hasn't been in the movies since the first! Does he not deserve the spotlight once more? His entire rib cage is exposed, yet he still hasn't broken character! Such dedication! I think your choice is clear, Spielberg.

Jurassic Park IV: Day of the Dilophosaur