woensdag 30 november 2016

Jurassic Park 2009: Battle Growlers: Triceratops

Year of release: 2009

Description: this four legged rhinoceros like dinosaur is easily recognizable by its large head with the round crest around it and three horns on its face, two large ones above the eyes, and a smaller one on the snout. It has a beak resembling a parrot's. The crest is adorned with small orange spikes sticking out of it (sixteen in total). It has a sturdy body, about twice the length of the head, ending in a short thick tail. Very noticeable, this figure sports a dino damage wound on its left flank, showing white ribs and red muscle tissue. A small button can be found in this wound, which when pressed produces a low howling growl. A second sound can be made by pushing the tail upwards (though in this release's case, the package suggests pressing the head frill instead), which also causes the head to rise upwards, as if attacking a carnivore with its horns. This second sound is more aggressive, like a hissing growl.
This Trike sports a rather diversified and elaborate paint job. Its underside (lower jaw, throat, belly, lower part of the tail), upper legs and parts on the back and upper part of the tail are coloured light grey. The facial area is mostly black, as is the back (with little triangular shapes sticking out of the main black colouring) and uppermost part of the tail. A black stripe runs from the mouth over the neck and back almost fully to the end of the tail on each side of the creature, interrupted only by the upper legs. A second black stripe runs from the base of the neck, also over the flanks toward the end of the tail, but not over the legs, again on both sides of the Triceratops (but on the left flank also interrupted by the wound). The body areas on the flanks and tail between both sets of black stripes are painted green. The lower legs are equally green, separated in colour from the upper legs by black bands around the knees. The small claws on all four legs are coloured dark green. The head frill is painted shiny dark blue, with short orange stripes on its edges running to and over the little frill spikes. The back of the frill is just plain black. The Ceratopsian carries a green stripe on each cheek, while the eye sockets are also green, with small blue eyes (and black pupils). Its beak and the three horns on the face are painted beige. It also has a pink tongue, and white JP logos on both upper hind legs.

Analysis: also making a return for the latest JP toy line is Hasbro's Triceratops sculpt, which remains a rather accurate and appealing figure, unhindered by some weird attack posture like most other electronic Hasbro dinosaurs are, though it too sadly retains its gaping wound. It comes with the same head butt action as before (and the same two sounds), though apparently the Hasbro team forgot this action feature was supposed to be activated by pushing its tail upwards, which is not mentioned at all on this figure's package. Instead, pressing the frill releases a 'combat roar', meaning, there is no distinct action feature specified on the figure's box. Luckily, us JP fans know this sculpt better than its creators it seems, and it's safe to say the original attack option is still present.
So the only really new thing (Hasbro's ignorance doesn't count since it was always there, it just seems to have gotten worse over the years) for this sculpt is the paint job, and oh my, did they went all out for this one! First impression with the abundance of green and the black bands would be of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, which is a whole different animal altogether. The new paint scheme is quite bizarre, but also rather imaginative. The fact the frill is coloured differently from the head and slightly adorned with stripes and such is a real improvement over this sculpt's previous incarnations, though it could still have used some more work, since it's a bit bland at present. The colouring on the rest of the body is a bit over the top though. The stripes all coming together on the end of the tail is a nice touch, but the lower legs being painted so differently makes it look like the Triceratops is wearing socks. It would have been preferable if the lower legs had been painted regular elephantine grey, and the black stripes and green colouring had continued over the upper legs instead. It's good to see details have been taken care of though, as illustrated by the claws, the eye sockets and the beak. The horns could have used more details though, they look a little too artificially pristine the way they are now.
Overall, still a good figure, but the paint job is a little too much. For some reason overly festive and elaborate paint jobs just don't cut it on thick hide quadruped dinosaurs like this one, as this case shows. A good try though.

Repaint: yes. This is a repaint of the JP III Triceratops figure (Wave 1). It has been repainted once before for JPD3.

Overall rating: 6/10. Still one of the better original Hasbro sculpts (and surely one of the best sculpts of this line), but, despite its originality, the paint job is just really over the top and tends to feel somewhat silly. This dinosaur figure is not at all rare and can still be found without difficulty. Since this set was a Toys'R'Us exclusive that could change eventually, but for the next few years, we're good.

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