Vault tales 51 CollectA Deinotherium (mini)

Who makes it? CollectA, as part of their Prehistoric Mammal mini box set, item number 89A1100

When did it come out? 2019

Still available? It hasn’t been out for a year yet…it had better be! (It is)

Somehow, for such a small figure, it can still appear large!

Where can it be found in my displays? Along with several other mini set figures, including CollectA ones.

How does it fit in the collection? It’s a prehistoric mammal. And it’s a mini. And it’s a CollectA figure, a brand that I am fond of. So this set as a whole was a no-brainer. That it came with a mini Estemmenosuchus is just icing on the cake.

It is a dark beast. At least from this angle, it is clear that the weird, recurved lower tusks are painted ivory.

Any story behind it? Not particularly. I have almost all of the large-scale CollectA mammals (I missed one, but I’ll fix that someday). Seeing several of them in a set together was awesome–if I ever have to pare down, I’ll at least have small versions to keep the shelves company.

Notable remarks about this figure (a review that isn’t really a review): First things first, this figure is an almost perfect miniaturization of the main figure, in sculpt and colour. It stands about 3.3cm at the shoulder, so depending on estimates for male Deinotherium (and, as with many CollectA prehistoric mammal figures, there is no doubt it is a male) the scale is roughly 1:106. The overall colour is the very standard megafauna patterns of many CollectA figures–a dark brown ochre base colour with a black wash over the back. It might be nice to see them vary that up a bit (like the recent Uintatherium). The details are still picked out well, with the eyes still in black but markedly obvious, and the lower tusks painted in ivory tones. As in the large model, the overall sculpt has a light fur texture, with clear ridges and folds at the joints and of course in the trunk. CollectA went with the hypothesis of a longer trunk; other companies go with a shorter one. I don’t know if there is a consensus at this time, but it is interesting to see such variation between models (I can put a Mojo, CollectA, Bullyland and Starlux side-by-side, and all have very different approaches; this is so different from the many woolly mammoth figures which generally kind of look the same). The CollectA take on Deinotherium reflects the long legs of this animal, one of the tallest land mammals of all time–and also depicts it as a relatively slender animal (but not ‘skinny’, it’s still muscular). Maybe this makes sense given their hot environments–or maybe it just helps differentiate their deinothere from other probiscidean models.

The male human is a little big, or that the Deinothere is a little small. That child is right to not want to get closer. Big elephant-like animals can be dangerous!

Would I recommend it? Well, yeah. Of course I would. What’s not to love? Even on its own it’s great, but it comes in a set of 12 fantastic little models of (mostly) Cenozoic animals (plus the aforementioned Permian-age Estemmenosuchus…which I appreciate, even if it doesn’t make perfect sense) and as a group prehistoric mammals are far less represented (although it has recently improved in fits and starts). The small size is perfect for playing, dioramas, or even as game pieces if you have need of such a thing. And for display purposes, you can get a whole series on the shelf without taking up a tonne of room. Moreover, given that they are readily available and not too expensive, there’s no reason not to get one for the kids as well.

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