So last weekend my dad was climbing around in the upper level of his shed when he stumbled across a box of my old stuff. It was news to me that I still had any belongings left at my parents place. I was pretty sure that the rubber maid tub full of hockey cards that I hauled out of the shed a few months ago was the last of my stuff to join me in my apartment but apparently this box remained. He told me that it contained my childhood blanket (a racoon pattern that my mom made me) some stuffed animals that I thought were long gone (like my green elephant named Long Nose) and some school papers. He left all that stuff up there. But there were a couple of items that he dragged down those rickety steps figuring that I might want them. He knows me well. He found my rubber dinosaur collection.
I was all about dinosaurs when I was a kid and still have a fascination with them today. I watch every dinosaur related tv show that I stumble across and love hearing about the latest discoveries. Most recently I watched a show called Titanaboa about a prehistoric snake they recently discovered that was the size of a bus. Crazy stuff. It amazes me how much we have learned about dinosaurs in my lifetime alone. When I was a kid dinosaurs like the Brontosaurus were cold blooded ancestors of lizards dragging heavy tails behind them as they wandered alone through the prehistoric world. Now we believe they were feathered bird ancestors with their tails up like a cat’s to give them balance as they roamed in packs. And the Brontosaurus doesn’t even exist anymore. When I was a kid T-Rex was unchallenged as the toughest dinosaur to ever live. No one was talking about Raptors or Spinosaurus back then. The times have definitely changed.
My old rubber dinosaurs are probably based more on fiction than fact these days. Though they may be kind of silly looking I’m pretty stoked to have them back. I played with these things all the time when I was a kid. Sometimes I just played dinosaurs but most of the time they were used to beat up on my G.I. Joe and Star Wars figures. Every action hero ends up on a lost prehistoric island at some point or another. I thought my dinosaurs had been passed down to Brian and then sold off at a yard sale years ago but here they are. I think I may be missing a few but a blue ankylosaurus is the only one that I’m certain is awol. Maybe I really only did have a handful of these things. It felt like more when I was a kid but all of my various toy collections seemed bigger back then. I know Doug had a Stegosaurus; who knows where that thing ended up.
Today I’ll talk briefly about this two legged brown guy whom I thought was a Tyrannosaurus Rex when I was young. When I was a little older I figured out that it was probably actually supposed to be an iguanodon based on the size of his arms and those ridges on his back. But truthfully I’m actually not sure what he’s supposed to be, maybe he is a crappy looking T-Rex. It’s not like these dinosaur toys came from a museum, most likely a dollar store so I’m sure they’re not paleontologist approved. I’m pretty sure the companies that made these aren’t overly concerned with scientific accuracy. Nothing about this guy looks like an animal that ever would have actually existed in nature. With the odd positioning of the legs, the size of the arms, the dragging tail, the dumbfounded expression complete with googly eyes and a gaping mouth, this thing looks more like a guy dressed in a dinosaur costume. He’s completely hollow so maybe I could jam my Quick Kick figure down his throat and make an accurate toy of an actor on a TOHO Studios set.
Despite being dated and scientifically inaccurate I still think this rubber dinosaur is kind of awesome. Most of that is nostalgia based but he is a dinosaur nonetheless so he’s automatically kinda cool. Barney is pretty much the only dinosaur that I can think of who isn’t at least a little bit cool. I like the sculpt of this thing even if it is silly. The positioning of his arms is great for strangling other dinosaurs, flipping over tanks, or wrestling Hulk Hogan. The large open mouth meant that he could engulf the head of almost any other toy in my collection. And his tail was thick enough to do some damage to any opponent. I actually really like the paint job on this guy too; with the exception of his big blue eyes maybe.
I would understand if you didn’t, but I like this stupid rubber toy. 6 out of 10.