The Ninja Turtles have a long history of crossing paths with dinosaurs. Even beyond the obvious role the Triceratons have played going back to
the early Mirage comics, the Ninja Turtles have come across regular dinosaurs repeatedly in the various cartoons and other media as well as the
toy lines. The latest was the Half-Shell Heroes Blast From the Past TV special that was produced and released last fall. Playmates released a
series of Half-Shell Heroes Turtles with small dino companions with a promise of more
to come. And once the TV special was released in November, it seemed like young fans couldn't wait for more dinosaurs to come. They may have
been disappointed when there were no dinos under the Christmas tree. But with the new year comes new TMNT toys. And the larger Blast From the
Past dinosaurs have finally arrived including three smaller dinosaurs as a part of the small vehicle assortment and the larger T-Rex which is
part of the medium vehicle assortment along with the hovercraft, Stealth Bike and Shred Tread.
Packaging - 8/10The packaging hasn't changed much for these toys. They did update the written description on the back and the photo showing all of the products in the line. They did add a small tag mentioning the TV special onto the card of each package as well. But to be honest, I was expecting an update of the graphics to tie it to the TV special. This is probably better though since it means that they match the previous releases and the rest of the Half-Shell Heroes toys in general.
Sculpting - Robo Raptor 4/10, Stegosaurus 5/10, Pterodactyl 6/10 T-Rex 7/10(Before I start, I should preface this by saying that I have seen the Blast From the Past TV special, but that was several months ago. And it won't be available on video for a few more weeks. So I'll do my best to review this from what I remember and the few screen shots I was able to find online.)
My favorite and the most accurate from the show is the T-Rex with Donatello. They made his head too large and they could stand to add some more skin texture to it. But it is still a large and reasonably fierce looking T-rex. Donatello as well as the other two Turtles are the same sculpts as the basic series versions but without the weapons. That is actually a good thing as the lack of detail on the weapons was the biggest drawback to those figures. So having them come empty handed is a significant improvement. The Pterodactyl is a nice looking sculpt and I really like how the feet are sculpted. They will support the figure on their own, but they can also move back to look natural in a flying pose. It's just a shame that the pterodactyl has such a huge head. The stegosaurus is cute, but they had to redesign the plates on its back, presumably for safety concerns. And Mikey still has the fur hat which I still think looks more like a scalped plush toy and his fur booties. Finally there is the Robo Raptor. I recall that the raptor was fairly large, but this still seems too large. And the Triceraton figure that is included doesn't look anything like the design in the TV special.
Paint - T-rex & Pterodactyl 6/10, Stegosaurus & Raptor 5/10The paint work for all of the dinosaurs are decent. And both the Pterodactyl and T-rex are reasonably accurate to the TV special. The Stegosaurus is a bit off since they made the plates on its back orange instead of blue. The Robo Raptor doesn't have a lot of paint work since it is suppose to look like bare metal. But what really hurts it is that they swapped the colors for the Triceraton's outfit to purple with black details instead of the black with purple details as it appeared in the show.
Play Value - 6/10Each of the Blast from the Past dinosaurs has basic articulation and an action feature. For the T-Rex, tilting the body down at the rear legs causes the jaw to open and then snap shut. The Pterodactyl has a button behind the saddle that causes the wings to flap. The stegosaurus will swing its neck to the right when the tail is swung to that side as well. Finally the Robo Raptor will rotate its neck clockwise when the tail is rotated counter-clockwise. And of course, each of the good dinosaurs has a standing saddle to hold a figure on its back.
Value - Robo Raptor 4/10, others 6/10The T-rex with Donnie set is part of the larger vehicle assortment and sells for $20 each. The other three are part of the small vehicle assortment that sells for $13 each. That's not a bad price for a decent sized dinosaur and a Half-Shell Heroes figure and an action feature. I'm less impressed with the Robo Raptor since it seems to be too large and the Triceraton figure isn't very accurate to the TV special.
Happy Hunting:The larger Blast From the Past dinosaurs started to show up in stores shortly after the first of the year. It's taken a little time for them to show up in greater numbers and become more common. But at this point I regularly see them in most stores that carry the Half-Shell Heroes toy line. They haven't become common online yet though.