Great White Shark (ANIA by Takara Tomy A.R.T.S.)

Review and images by JimoAi; edited by bmathison1972

The great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) is probably the most famous fish on this planet. It has gained a fearsome reputation thanks to movies like Jaws, which portrays these beautiful animals as nothing more that blood-thirsty killers driven by the instinct to kill. In reality, they are intelligent and curious beings and thanks to their media portrayal, are highly misunderstood (you’re more likely to die from a vending machine than a shark attack) And even though about a handful of people die each year from shark attacks, we kill 73 to 100 million sharks per year (3 every second!) for their fins (especially hammerheads, tigers) for the sickening and shameful delicacy known as shark fin soup and for trophy hunting (especially great whites for their jaws). Today, great whites are classed as ‘Vulnerable’ by the IUCN. Great whites are a cosmopolitan species (range across most, if not all, of the world in appropriate habitats), especially warm waters. The males average 300 to 400 cm, while the largest is 450 cm and females average about 400 to 500 cm, though in rare exceptions, large females can get to 600 cm. Unlike most fish, they are warm-blooded and are able to regulate their body temperature like mammals, birds, and some other fish like tuna and mako sharks. They can like up to 70 years of age and prey on bony fish, sea birds, sharks, rays, turtles, pinnipeds, sea otters, small to medium size cetaceans, and there’s even a case of great whites hunting down a humpback whale. Despite many believing the great white being at the top of the ocean food chain, they are preyed upon by the occasional killer whale and they do engage in cannibalism.

About the figure: this shark measures about 13 cm long, and since this figure is a female due to the lack of male claspers like most shark figures, this puts the figure at the 1:30 to the 1:46 scale range. The teeth of this shark has been blunt, as it is meant to be a kid’s toy and kids may get hurt if the teeth are too sharp. The figure has the correct number of gill slits (5 on each side) and are appropriately large as real great whites have pretty large gill slits. The tail is correctly shaped as mackerel sharks like the great white and makos have both too and lower lobes almost the same size with one another and the fins seem to be of the right size in proportion to the body. There is a visible lateral line and black tips on the bottom of the pectoral fins too! (Pictures 3 and 4).

The nose seems to be more of a mako shark rather than a great white due to how pointy it is. Real great whites have a broader nose compared to makos, and they only get the appearance of a pointy nose when attacking prey and wrinkles are usually seen where the skin stretches, although not a single wrinkle is seen here. Although this means it’s more similar to a mako shark, it seems too stocky to be a mako shark, thus making it look more like a hybrid of a mako and a great white (shown in the next two images in comparison with Schleich 2018’s great white and CollectA’s shortfin mako shark).

The colour scheme is this really dark blue; it’s too uniform and should be more jagged. The eyes are a red colour with a black pupil while in life great whites they are mostly his black colour.

Action feature: this great white shark is from a line of animal action figures by Takara Tomy in which all figures feature at least 1 point of articulation. This great white has 2 points of articulation: the jaw and the tail, which swivels about 180°. Takara Tomy has also been updating their aquatic animals to make them float in water, allowing for more playability for children and this great white shark is no exception as it does float in water.

Overall, while not the best great white in terms of accuracy, this figure is good for children who love sharks or any shark enthusiasts out there. If you’re looking for a great white that is accurate, look no further to the Safari Ltd. 2016 and Schleich 2018 and 2013 models.

This fella better watch out for the offshore orcas as they are hungry for sharks. (Orca by Papo)

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