Toy Review: Papo Tyrannosaurus Rex, v2.0
I’m somewhat embarrassed that it’s taken me so long to get this figure. I’m a big dinosaur nut and Papo has some of the coolest dinosaur models around, but recently I’ve been completely distracted by indie toys, DC Total Heroes, Eaglemoss Star Trek ships, and gobs of other great toys. With all that competition for my attention (and money), the Papo dinosaurs fell by the wayside. I had pretty much forgotten about them until I got this T-Rex as a birthday present. It looks as stunning as other Papo dinosaurs, so let’s take a closer look!
This isn’t the first time Papo has tamed the Tyrannosaurus. The previous figure was pretty awesome, even though it had an awkwardly static sitting pose. I know why; it can be difficult to balance a T-Rex toy with its tail lifted off the ground, so they just used the tail as a brace. But that pose is just too similar to the upright tail-dragging T-Rex from my childhood, a posture that I find so absurd today. T-Rex 2.0 sports the more scientifically-accepted horizontal orientation, and it really makes the figure come alive on the shelf. There are some balancing issues as the right foot isn’t quite flush with the ground, but it will stand well enough.
As with other Papo dinosaurs, they went nuts with the sculpt and paint apps, scientific accuracy be damned. That’s not to say that the look isn’t incredible.. it’s stunning, actually, and you’ll want to take some time just to soak in all the cool details. But much of that coolness is due to theatrics rather than legitimate science; crocodilian epidermal bones decorate the head and a tooth juts out at a stray angle from the lower jaw, giving the figure a movie-monster look much like the V-Rex from King Kong 2005. It's undeniably fantastic but the first T-Rex looks more like a real animal in spite of its awkward sitting pose.
Like its predecessor, T-Rex 2.0 has just one point of articulation: a hinged jaw that adds a lot of character to the figure. Close-jawed, he’s sniffing around on the hunt for prey… open-jawed, he’s lunging for munchies or defending his territory from rivals. The joint is a little loose on my sample and I suspect it might droop open permanently if you mess with it too much.
All this for $22 plus shipping (on Amazon). That’s not an optimal price for a collector like me eager to reduce his toy budget, but it’s a solid hunk of plastic and competitively priced with other dinosaur models.
So Papo once again proves that it’s the dino modeler to beat with an upgraded T-Rex that pushes the limits of expressive sculpting… even if that sculpting takes a bit of artistic license. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it puts the figure in an uncanny valley as it’s trying to be both a scientifically accurate dinosaur and a monster from Stan Winston’s creature shop. If we’re going to go this far, let’s take it a step further. Let's go all “Jurassic Park Chaos Effect” and color it purple and black with yellow stripes! Hm... maybe that's a bit too much. Scroll down for more pics!