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"Listen to the chorus of the Brontosaurus

And the Stegosaurus down by the swamp

Along comes a dinosaur making such a loud roar

Stomping with its feet and going stomp, stomp, stomp

Pterodactyl flapping, long beak clacking

Big teeth snapping down from the tree

Here’s the woolly mammoth, tusks all curly

Joins the hurly-burly, oh dear me

What a noise, it’s the boys

From the Prehistoric Animal Brigade!"


As just about any six-year-old will eagerly tell you, dinosaurs are awesome. And from Hollywood's point of view, they make for great, epic beasts and terrifying monsters, particularly given the fact that they actually existed at one point. Hence, it's only natural that writers would want to include dinosaurs in their stories.

Unfortunately, most writers only know a few types of dinosaur (see Small Taxonomy Pools). Even dinosaur enthusiasts may be forced to avoid lesser-known dinosaurs, in case the viewers don't get it. As a result of this, series featuring dinosaurs, whether as a result of Time Travel or being set in Prehistoria or One Million BC, are almost guaranteed to feature at least one of the following.

  1. Tyrannosaurus Rex
  2. "Brontosaurus" (real name: Apatosaurus)
  3. Triceratops
  4. Stegosaurus
  5. Some species of dromeosaurid (usually called Velociraptor but more similar to Deinonychus and Utahraptor and looking like the raptors in Jurassic Park)
  6. Spinosaurus (qualified as "the dinosaur even more Badass than T. rex")
  7. An improbably frilled, venom-spitting Dilophosaurus
  8. Allosaurus (The classic tyrannosaur-substitute. Especially useful if it's necessary to have a dinosaur that lived in the Jurassic as opposed to the Cretaceous.)
  9. Archaeopteryx (commonly known as "the first bird")
  10. An ornithomimid (called Ornithomimus, Struthiomimus, or, after Jurassic Park, Gallimimus)
  11. Diplodocus (the classic brontosaur-substitute)
  12. Brachiosaurus (usually looking more like Giraffatitan)
  13. Ankylosaurus (the "tank" dinosaur)
  14. Styracosaurus (the classic triceratops-substitute)
  15. Parasaurolophus (rarely named but often shown)
  16. "Duckbill" (based on the hadrosaur tribe containing Edmontosaurus and Anatotitan)
  17. Iguanodon (the longest-standing dinosaur in pop-culture, as it was one of the very first non-avian dinosaurs to be discovered by science itself)

If you're lucky you could also meet:

  1. Giganotosaurus (Primeval 3, Dinotopia)
  2. Carnotaurus (Dinosaur)
  3. Baryonyx (Ice Age 3)
  4. Ceratosaurus (Jurassic Park 3)
  5. Megalosaurus (Dinosaurs)
  6. Coelophysis (Land of the Lost TV Series)
  7. Compsognathus (Jurassic Park 2)
  8. Oviraptor (The Land Before Time TV series)
  9. Troodon (or, rather, its Dinosauroid altmode.)
  10. The biggest sauropod of the moment (Calvin and Hobbes shows "Ultrasaurus")
  11. Plateosaurus (The Flintstones)
  12. Protoceratops (Barney and Friends)
  13. Pachycephalosaurus (The Land Before Time)
  14. Corythosaurus (Jurassic Park 3)
  15. Maiasaura (Jurassic Park novel)

Among non-dinosaurian reptiles, there's:

  1. Pteranodon and Rhamphorhynchus (often mixed together in one single animal)
  2. Plesiosaurs (more specifically Elasmosaurus)
  3. Dimetrodon (Not technically a true reptile, nor a contemporary of dinosaurs)

If you're lucky, you might also meet:

  1. Quetzalcoatlus(as "the one flier larger than Pteranodon")
  2. Dimorphodon and Pterodactylus (in the original Lost World)
  3. Ichthyosaurs (Specifically Ichthyosaurus)
  4. Mosasaurs (Specifically Tylosaurus or occasionally Mosasaurus)
  5. Pliosaurs (Speicfically Kronosaurus or Liopleurodon)
  6. Archelon (an Cretaceous giant sea turtle)
  7. Some therapsid (maybe Cynognathus)

Among prehistoric mammals, there's:

  1. Woolly mammoth and american mastodon (Usually called the ancestors of modern elephants, when they were only relatives)
  2. Sabre-tooth tiger (Likewise, often portrayed as the ancestor of modern cats, when it was only a relative)

If you are checking some Real Life infos about these critters, go to the following index.

Examples of Stock Dinosaurs include:

Anime and Manga

  • And then, there was the totally abysmal DinoZAURS, a cheap and obvious Power Rangers cash-in, with fossil versions of each of the Rangers' power animals changing into robot warriors who defended Earth. It's remembered (if at all) for its memorably terrible CGI. And also for the fact that, when the Mammoth skeleton transformed into a robot, the skull of the mammoth (complete with tusks and trunk) became the pelvic area of the robot. Try to visualize it...
  • Dinosaur King uses some stock dinosaurs, but they have no problem dipping into more obscure territory as well.
  • Averted in the manga Jabberwocky. Most of the Petting Zoo People characters are more obscure dinosaurs. Fantastic Racism comes up not only against the human characters, but among the various species (one main character is an oviraptor, whose people faced persecution due to scientific theories that were popular before Science Marches On)

Comic Books

  • In Runaways, Gert has a pet Deinonychus named Old Lace. Actually, it's first referred to as a Velociraptor, than a Deinonychus. The animal it's actually based on are the "Velociraptors" from Jurassic Park, which actually means given its size that Old Lace is actually a Utahraptor. Old Lace is completely featherless - however, she's genetically engineered and actually from the future, so that could explain many of the inconsistencies.
  • Marvel Comics Lost World The Savage Land is populated with nothing but stock dinosaurs.
  • Age of Reptiles by Ricardo Delgado is a story only about dinosaurs. No dialogue at all. Dienonychus, Tyrannosaurus and Ceratosaurus among them.


  • The first Documentary on dinosaurs was a short newsreel Monsters of the Past: The Story of the Great Dinosaur (1923). This documentary featured Brontosaurus, Tyrannosaurus Rex and Triceratops — which of course fight.
  • Most other documentaries of the time (1920-1940) used stock footage from The Lost World (1925) and Ghost of Slumber Mountain (see below). Many other documentaries use stock footage from other documentaries, so as to save money, so only original footage or notable documentaries will be mentioned.
  • Irwin Allen epic documentary The Animal World (1956) had this in spades, and was the Crowning Moment of Awesome for the film since the FX were handled by Ray Harryhausen AND Willis O'Brian. Included Ceratosaurus, Stegosaurus, Tyrannosaurus, Brontosaurus and Triceratops.
  • Message From a Dinosaur (1957) features museum mounts and excavations of dinosaurs.
  • Disney's Mars and Beyond features a segment about "Possible martian Life" and compares it to how life evolved on earth--going into a pretty lengthy side track about it. Prehistoric life that is identifiable includes many stock animals--Dimetrodon is one of the synapsids. Dinosaurs include Plateosaurus, Stegosaurus, Allosaurus, Brontosaurus, Ankylosaurus, Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus. Other reptiles include Rhamphorhynchus and Pteranodon. Birds include Archaeopteryx. Mammals Smilodon, Glyptodonts, ground sloths, and mammoths before jumping to modern animals entirely. These animals were presented as static images moving along a static background. Epic Non-Animation.
  • Commissioned by the Department of the Interior, an educational film eventually entitled This is Dinosaur (1958) featured Allosaurus, Stegosaurus and Brontosaurus...static sculptures. The film is about as active as the sculptures themselves.
  • Dinosaurs: The Terrible Lizards (1970) used stop motion to bring dinosaurs to the class room. These animals included: Coelophysis, Brontosaurus, Stegosaurus, Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Pteranodon, Ankylosaurus, Glyptodon, Megatherium, Smilodon, Woolly Mammoth, Neanderthals. This footage occasionally found its way into National Geographic specials.
  • NOVA ran several documentaries on Dinosaurs including:
    • "The Hot Blooded Dinosaurs" (1977) has mentioned and displayed Brontosaurus, Stegosaurus, Dimetrodon, Deinonychus, and Archaeopteryx.
    • "The Asteroid and the Dinosaurs" has a small, simply animated sequence with Diplodocus and Tyrannosaurus.
    • "The Hunt for Chinese Dinosaurs" (1991) shows several dinosaurs from China and from Canada. The first includes Protoceratops. North American setting focuses mainly on Troodon (and the Dinosauroid theory) and of course, Tyrannosaurus rex. We can see animated Troodon as well. Stop motion animation and hand drawn animation are well implemented. It's also to note the Lampshade Hanging about the Dinosaurs Are Dragons thing during the entire program. Originally it was it's own separate 90 minute documentary, but was shortened for NOVA, cutting some ancillary bits of varied animation including sand-animation and some stop motion sequences.
    • "Case of the Flying Dinosaur" focuses on the connection between Dinosaurs and Birds (still debated heavily at the time). Archaeopteryx, Pterosaurs, and Deinonychus prominently featured.
    • "T. Rex, Exposed" - Guess who this is about?
    • "The Real Jurassic Park" (1993) was totally made to dual-promote science and the movie. See that film for the stock in use.
    • "Dinosaurs of the Gobi" (1994) focuses more on prehistoric small mammals from the late cretaceous of the Gobi. Protoceratops and Velociraptor are about the only ones mentioned.
    • "The Curse of T. Rex" (1997) - About a legal battle over a Tyrannosaur Skeleton
  • Dinosaur! hosted by Christopher Reeves is one of the best known dinosaur documentaries of the 80s (as it was shown on CBS as a big event). Spectacular animation by Phil Tippet (who did on RoboCop and Star Wars 's stop motion sequences among many others) really steal the show. The Animation primarily focuses on a family of Hadrosaurs/Anatosaurus' as they try to raise offspring. Aside from them, there are Tyrannosaurus Rex, Apatosaurus, and a pair of Deinonychus. Most of the footage comes from Tippet's earlier short film Prehistoric Beasts. It won an Emmy for Special Effects.
    • And now Phil Tippet has put the original short up on his Youtube Acount: Go watch it!
  • Lost Worlds, Vanished Lives (1989), hosted by David Attenborough averts it until it actually discusses dinosaurs. Focusing on a plethora of extinct forms from every age of life. Many of the animals tend to go unnamed or compared to modern relatives. Pterosaurs get almost half an episode and feature fossils of many rarely used species but of course mention Quetzalcoatlus and Pteranodon. Dinosaurs mentioned and featured include Brachiosaurus (Giraffatitan, as its an African specimen), Seismosaurus (now Diplodocus), Archeopteryx, Stegosaurus, Allosaurus, Protoceratops, Tyrannosaurus, Diplodocus, various Hadrosaurs (Maiasaura among them) and Triceratops. Plants are actually named in a general sense: Tree Ferns, Cycads, Horsetails, Cyprus and Conifers. Transitional fossils and even unnamed, unknown invertebrate fossils are given the bulk of screen time.
  • Walter Cronkite hosted A&E's 4 part Dinosaur! documentary. Mostly stock dinosaurs. There are animated puppets of Megalosaurus, Iguanodon, Brachiosaurus, Coelophysis, Tyrannosaurus, Allosaurus, Diplodocus, and Maiasaura (some scenes with carnivores are rather Nightmare Fuel -ish). The program also shows "Brontosaurus", Stegosaurus, Carnotaurus (not stock at the time), Parasaurolophus, Deinonychus, Archaeopteryx, Compsognathus... and the mass extinction shown as most instantaneous possible. It also contains a memorable Harryhausen Lampshade Hanging about the correct use of dinosaurs in movies.
  • PBS's epic documentary series The Dinosaur! (1992) covered many non-stock and stock dinosaurs. Notable for its animated sequences, animals on display there include: Iguanodon, Edmontosaurus, Tyrannosaurs, Stegosaurus, Ceratosaurus, Triceratops, Troodon, Pteranodon, Rhamphorhynchus, Ichthyosaurus, Mosasaurs, and Diplodocus. One of the all time best documentaries.
  • “Il Pianeta dei Dinosauri” (Planet of dinosaurs) was an Italian documentary from 1993, the same year in which the movie Jurassic Park was broadcast in this country. It was extremely well-informed and popular, to the point to be translated in English and broadcast in USA and other countries worldwide. [1] Even though inaccuracies are present (a bit of Anachronism Stew), they are balanced out by the host pointing out the uncertainty of scientific statements. Prehistoric Monster is almost-totally averted as well. Planet of Dinosaurs is divided in four episodes 1 hour long, each followed by a commentary. It’s hosted by the most popular Italian science-writer (Piero Angela), and has actually Dale Russell as the paleontological consultant. Curiously, Angela appears split in two “twin hosts” which talk each other: one remains in the studio (shaped like a hi-tech prehistoric cave), while the other time-travels in a “mesozoic world” and interacts with living dinosaurs (animatronic puppets: CGI was still an unknown thing in docus). Like in WWD, landscapes are filmed from Real Life. Particularly remembered is the dramatic asteroid scene in the last episode. Also worth of note is the entirely synth-played score. Basically all robotic dinosaurs are stock, and almost every pre-Jurassic Park stock dinosaur is shown in the mesozoic travel. Many of them could appear inaccurate to modern eyes, but these mistakes are mainly due to Science Marches On.
    • Large theropods are represented mainly by Tyrannosaurus rex (the undisputed dino-star of the show), with Allosaurus making only a brief apparition. Both roar continuously, but only the allosaur tries to eat the human.
    • The chosed dromaeosaurid was Deinonychus (note that Velociraptor became stock just that year). They’re wrongly shown in Late Cretaceous, and portrayed as the classic featherless pack-hunters that attack a much larger animal, rip its flesh with their sickle-claws and begin to eat it alive.
    • Other small theropods include Coelophysis (the show-opener) and a featherless, egg-stealing (but also crest-less) Oviraptor.
    • The sauropods are almost always Apatosauruses (named “Brontosaurs” and actually more similar to Diplodocuses). In the first episode, one brontosaur almost hits the human with its tail. “Brachiosaurus” (Giraffatitan) is only briefly shown. The prosauropod Plateosaurus is portrayed too - mostly quadrupedal, and to show the rise to power of dinosaurs as usual.
    • A sleeping Stegosaurus is accidentally woken by the human in the first episode. Ankylosaurus shows up only in the last episode (about dinosaur extinction), and is unusually accurate (except for the tail-club which is two-lobed like Euoplocephalus).
    • Of course Triceratops is the chosen ceratopsid. It doesn’t battle with T. rex, but in the 2nd episode one young is eaten alive by the theropod in a heart-breaking scene. In the same episode, one adult female chases the human away from her nest. Protoceratops appears only in the form of eggs eaten by Oviraptors. Two oversized (8 m long) Pachycephalosaurus headbutt each other.
    • Hadrosaurs show up in all four episodes, in the usual role of “chosen preys” for T.rexes and “raptors” (and also for the giant croc Deinosuchus, who fails the attack). No fewer than four kinds appear: Parasaurolophus, Corythosaurus, Edmontosaurus and “Anatosaurus” (the latest two were still considered distinct at the time). Strangely, the documentary totally forgets to mention just the most iconic European dinosaur, Iguanodon.
    • The third episode is specially dedicated to pterosaurs and sea-reptiles. The chosen pterosaurs are Rhamphorhynchus, Pterodactylus, Pteranodon, and Quetzalcoatlus. Sea-reptiles are Ichthyosaurus, Elasmosaurus (with flexible neck), and Kronosaurus, who collides with the human’s submarine in one scene. (Don’t forget Liopleurodon became stock only after WWD). The most remembered scene, however, is the human hang-gliding near a gigantic Quetzalcoatlus and getting attacked by the latter.
    • Fossil pieces shown in the studio include a Triceratops skull. Many other animals are mentioned: Protoceratops (included the famous skeleton clutched with Velociraptor) Styracosaurus, pterosaurs, Archaeopteryx, Ichthyornis & Hesperornis, Mosasaurs, Plesiosaurs, Armored fish, Trilobites, Dimetrodon, Therapsids and some small Mesozoic mammals.
  • Paleoworld (1994-1997) ran for 50 episodes and thus got to focus on many non-stock dinosaurs. It covered things form obscure island gigantism rat species to T. rex. It used some old anamatronics and painting close ups to show its various prehistoric animals.
    • The show was repackaged from 1998 to 1999 as Bonehead Detectives of the Paleoworld for a younger market.
  • Planet of Life (1995) averted this trope hard. The only stock dinosaurs that appear are Edmontosaurus and Triceratops--and they're both ancillary to the episode they appear in. Instead, we get a focus on the development of plants through time. An episode is devoted to bacterial evolution into the cell, another on the Cambrian Explosion (featuring Pikaia, Anomalocaris, Opabinia, Hallucigenia and many others, but the mentioned ones are the iconic animals of the age), another on the development of fish to amphibians (featuring some of the usual suspects but also Pteraspis and Cheirolepis), the evolution of Birds (featuring Confuciusornis as well as Archeopteryx), the evolution of flowering plants and the final one focused on human evolution.
  • The Ultiamte Guide: T-Rex (1995) manages to go into very decent detail about the life, environment and evidence regarding Tyrannosaurus Rex. It was the series' only entry on dinosaurs.
  • The Prehistory of Australia is a rare documenatary focusing on Dinosaurs and Australian fauna of the cenozoic. Suffers form some Science Marches On. Includes Allosaurus in the first portion. Thylacine in the second. Then Humans appear...
  • Walking with Dinosaurs and its follow-up series feature pretty much every stock dinosaur listed above and just as many (or more) animals that were not heavily featured before. Inspired many to follow in its example.
    • The original WWD featured Stegosaurus, Utahraptor, Pteranodon, unnamed pterosaurs and Tyrannosaurus among the great stock, Diplodocus, Allosaurus, Brachiosaurus, Rhamphorynchus, Iguanodon, unnamed allosaurs, Anatotitan, and Ankylosaurus among the semi-stock, and Coelophysis, cynodonts, Plateosaurus, Liopleurodon, and Quetzalcoatlus among the rare stock.
    • WWB featured Smilodon, woolly mammoths, and neanderthals among the great stock, and Gastornis, Andrewsarchus, Paraceratherium, Australopithecus, Megatherium, Megaloceros, and woolly rhinos among the rare stock.
    • WWM featured Dimetrodon for secondary stock, and trilobites, sea scorpions, Meganeura, Arthropleura, and Edaphosaurus among the rare stock.
    • The Ballad of Big Al had Stegosaurus for great stock, and Allosaurus, Apatosaurus, Brachiosaurus, and Diplodocus among semi-stock.
    • Chased by Dinosaurs had Pteranodon and Velociraptor among the great stock, and Argentinosaurus, Sarcosuchus, Giganotosaurus, and Protoceratops among the rare stock.
    • Sea Monsters had pterosaurs, coelurosaurs, Tyrannosaurus, and Pteranodon among the great stock, hadrosaurs, Ankylosaurus, and Anatotitan among the rare stock, and sea scorpions, trilobites, Dunkleosteus, Megalodon, Liopleurodon, Mosasaurs, Elasmosaurus, Archelon, and giant mosasaurs among the rare stock.
    • Walking With Cavemen had neanderthals and mammoths among the great stock, and australopithecus and megaloceros among the rare stock.
  • Extinct! (2001) Averts this in all but 2 examples.
  • When Dinosaurs Roamed America (2001) focuses on American Dinosaurs (as if they needed more representation). Some non-stock Triassic Reptiles and dinosaurs do make it in early on, however. Among the stock dinosaurs, there's Coelophysis, Dilophosaurus, Ceratosaurus, Allosaurus, Apatosaurus, Stegosaurus, pterosaurs, dromaeosaurs, coelurosaurs, T. Rex, Triceratops, Anatotitan, Quetzalcoatlus, and Ornithomimus.
  • Before We Ruled the World (2003) focuses on recent extinctions only. It has Irish elk, neanderthals, cave bears, and woolly mammoths.
  • Dinosaur Planet (2003) mostly averts this, as the majority of dinosaurs highlighted were lesser-known species like Daspletosaurus, Pyroraptor, Tarascosaurus (mainland and dwarf insular forms), Magyarosaurus, Orodromeus, Aucasaurus, and Saltasaurus. Stock ones featured include Velociraptor (which gets a focus episode), Oviraptor, Protoceratops, Iguanodon, Ichthyornis, Maiasaura (receives episode focus), Quetzalcoatlus, Edmontosaurus, titanosaurs, dromaeosaurs, troodontids, plesiosaurs, Giganotosaurus, and Tyrannosaurus.
  • Monsters We Met (2004) focuses on recently extinct animals and thus averts this for at least half the creatures involved. Stock ones featured include woolly mammoths, Smilodon, American mastodon, moas, Haast's eagle (actually a modern-day harpy eagle), and Australopithecus.
  • The Truth About Killer Dinosaurs (2005) - focuses on two killer dinosaurs (Tyrannosaurus and Velociraptor) and their prey (Triceratops and ankylosaurs).
  • Prehistoric Monsters Revealed "Reveals" both stock and non-stock dinosaurs, including: Dunkleosteus, Mosasaurus, Meganeura, Arthropleura, Velociraptor, Quetzalcoatlus, Pteranodon, Giganotosaurus, Argentinosaurus, Spinosaurus, Phorusrhachos, and Doedicurus. The CGI is sub-par for the time period.
  • Jurassic Fight Club (2008) featured: Tyrannosaurus, Deinonychus, Allosaurus, Ceratosaurus, Stegosaurus, Megalodon, Utahraptor, Edmontosaurus, and Pterosaurs.
  • Animal Armageddon (2009) focused on several mass extinctions across the world. Animals on display include many non-stock animals, as the first focus on times before dinosaurs had evolved. As such, the number of non-stock animals outnumbers the stock in many of the episodes. Stock animals featured include trilobites, eurypterids, Dunkleosteus, Eusthenopteron & Ichthyostega, hadrosaurs, ammonites, mosasaurs, titanosaurs, Protoceratops, Quetzalcoatlus, Triceratops, Troodon, Tyrannosaurus, Velociraptor, and woolly mammoths.
  • Clash of the Dinosaurs (2009) has maybe 5 minutes of animation that it re-uses again and again. Inaccurate information compounds its badness. Dinosaurs include Tyrannosaurs, Quetzalcoatlus, Triceratops, Ankylosaurus, Parasaurolophus, and Deinonychus.
  • Monsters Resurrected did whole segments on prehistoric animals in detail each episode. Largely averting stock animals: Titanis (a Phorusrhachid), Spinosaurus, Acrocanthosaurus, Amphicyon the Bear-Dog, Tylosaurus (a Mosasaur) and Megalania. Each animal was presented with animals it lived with and hunted, as well as discussing their extinctions. The Titanis episode featured Smilodon, an ancestral wolf (Canis edwardi), Hippidion (a North American horse) and a ground sloth. Spinosaurus has its ego further inflated as "Biggest Carnivore ever" taken to an insane degree and features Sarcosuchus, Carcharodontosaurus, the sauropod Paralititan, and the small theropod Rugops. Acrocanthosaurus features Paluxysaurus (a sauropod), Tenontosaurus (a large ornithopod), Deinonychus and the ankylosaur Sauropelta. Amphicyon features Daeodon (a largely carnivorous swine dubbed the "Terminator Pig"), Moropus (a Chalicothere), Merychippus (a primitive horse), Ramoceros (a pronghorn), and Epicyon (a more true canid). Tylosaurus featured Cretoxyrhina, Dolichorhynchops (a short-necked, long billed Plesiosaur), Elasmosaurus, Xiphactinus and Dallasaurus (see below). Finally, Megalania featured Procoptodon (the largest kangaroo ever), Diprotodon (the largest marsupial ever--basically a giant wombat), Thylacoleo (the "Marsupial Lion") and humans.
  • Prehistoric (Insert City Here) (2010) averts it in a few minor cases of it by taking major metropolitan areas and exploring the fossils found in and around them.Some of the dinosaur footage is taken from Dinosaur Planet and When Dinosaurs Roamed America, but new footage was made for this series. New York has Mastodons, Short Faced Bears (Arctodus), the Giant Beaver Castoroides, Archelon, Ammonites, Coelophysis, Dilophosaurus, Postosuchus and Eurypterids among others. Dallas, Texas features Mammoths, "Scimitar cats" (ancestors of Smilodon), Mosasaurs, Cretoxyrhina, the sauropod Paluxysaurus and Dallasaurus (a basal mosasaur). Washington D.C. features Megalodon, Amphicyon (a "Bear Dog"), ancient Peccaries, Astrodon, Pterosaurs (Pteranodon) and Utahraptor. Finally, Los Angeles features Plesiosaurs (Elasmosaur), Ice Age Bison, straight-shelled ammonites, Giant ground sloths, Smilodon, Parasaurolophus and another Hadrosaur and a Tyrannosaur.
  • Tyrannosaurus Sex (2010) focuses on the titular dinosaur, as well as Titanosaurus and Stegosaurus. Or, rather, their private parts.
  • Prehistoric Assassins (2011) features Deinonychus and Tenontosaurus, Smilodon and Bison antiquus, Megalania and Diprotodon, Hyaenodon and Poebrotherium, Majungasaurus and Rapetosaurus, Daspletosaurus and Corythosaurus in its first episode and Elasmosaurus, Liopleurodon, Megalograptus, Cameroceras, Xiphactinus, Gillicus and Dunkleosteus in its second.
  • March of the Dinosaurs has Scar, an Edmontosaurus and Patch, a Troodon as the main charchters. Quetzalcoatlus, Albertosaurus, Gorgosaurus, Pachyrhinosaurus, Edmontonia and a moasasaur show up as well.
  • Dinosaur Revolution is more of a tribute to Dinosaurs in the model of Ricardo Delgado's Age of Reptiles. So it's not really a documentary aside from the talking heads, but stories about dinosaurs. Still fun, but exectuive meddling forced it into a mold it was not ready to fill (it was planned as 6 episodes, but was cut to 4 — and the talking heads were for an after action followup). Because of this, some creatures are modeled after other species due to the changes. It features a healthy mix of stock and non-stock dinosaurs.
  • Planet Dinosaur is a BBC Documentary that features largely non-stock dinosaurs from places rarely covered until the last 5 years or so: China, South America, Africa and so on.


  • Brute Force (1914) is the first film to feature Dinosaurs in a non-animated capacity: a full scale mechanical Ceratosaurus...eating grass.
  • The Dinosaur and the Missing Link (1916) features an armored sauropod battling an Ape Man. Cavemen also appear. Its followups, Prehistoric Poultry and R.F.D. 10,000 B.C. Re-use the model but also include an Emu-like prehistoric bird.
  • Ghost of Slumber Mountain (1918) Using Stop Motion, Wilis O'Brian brought a Tyrannosauurs, Brontosaurus, Triceratops to life. The film also had the prehistoric terror-bird Diatryma. This is also the earliest filmed battle between Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus.
  • 1925's The Lost World also started the trend, but subverted it as well. The main big predator named is Allosaurus (though a Tyrannosaur appears for one scene). Other Dinosaurs include Trachodon (now Edmontosaurus), Brontosaurus, Triceratops, Stegosaurus and Pteranodon. Then it includes the now discredited genus Agathaumas, which has an iconic battle with Allosaurs and Tyrannosaurus.
  • The original King Kong and its sequel Son Of Kong have Tyrannosaurus, Brontosaurus, Stegosaurus, Pteranodon, a serpentine Plesiosaur, Styracosaurus. Then there's the weird things like the Dragon-like creature, thick-headed Elasmosaur, Giant Bear, Teratornis, and two-legged, carnivorous lizard among other oddities.
  • The "Rite of Spring" sequence in Fantasia may be one of the Trope Makers here. It shows off a random cross-section of prehistoric life in the space of a few minutes. It includes many ancient forms of life not normally committed to film (Trilobites, ancient fish, etc), but lots of stock animals too. Identifiable prehistoric animals include:
  1. Dinosaurs: Plateosaurus, Brontosaurus, Diplodocus, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Ceratosaurus, a small coelurosaur (maybe Ornitholestes), Struthiomimus, Archaeopteryx, Stegosaurus, Triceratops, Protoceratops, and four hadrosaur kinds (Parasaurolophus, Anatosaurus, Corythosaurus and Kritosaurus)
  2. Non-dinosaurs: Trilobites, Ammonites, a Pareiasaurid, Dimetrodon, Mosasaurs, Elasmosaurs, Pteranodon, and Rhamphorhynchus. There are also a lot of modern-day creatures, many of them are obscure invertebrates used to represent Life's first evolutionary steps.
    • 25 years later, the Disney Imagineers created a Primeval World diorama for the 1964-1965 New York World's Fair, with many of the individual scenes apparently inspired by Fantasia. This diorama, which is currently installed at Disneyland in California, is a slight improvement on the film — the first scene shows dimetrodons in a Coal Age forest of giant horsetails (and Meganeura giant dragonflies, thereby combing the Carboniferous and the Permian), and then moves to a Jurassic swamp with some generic sauropods, followed by scenes featuring Pteranodon, Triceratops, and Struthiomimus (all Cretaceous). So far, so good; the sauropods look ridiculous and should not be munching water weeds in a swamp, but that can be put down to a combination of 1960's paleontological ignorance and artistic license. But then the final scene depicts a Stegosaurus battling some large theropod beside a violent lava flow. If the theropod is supposed to be a T. rex, as the narrator usually states, why does it have three fingers per hand, and what the heck is the stego doing in the Cretaceous? You could ignore the narrator and assume that the setting has reverted back to the Jurassic for some reason, and the stego is fighting an Allosaurus... but that doesn't explain why stego has five tail spikes. Sigh. (Also, lava is really more of a Cretaceous thing.)
      • Word of God states that the creature is a Tyrannosaurus, but it doesn't have three fingers because it looks better. It's because people actually did used to think T. rex had three fingers. We now know this was sorta true, it's recently been discovered that Tyrannosaurus did have three fingers, but the third was vestigial and would not have been visible on the animal's hand.
  • Special Effects Failure laden Unknown Island has Brontosaurs, Dimetrodon, Ceratosaurus and a Flesh-Eating Giant Ground Sloth. Admittedly, people have suggested that giant sloths were carnivores (or at least omnivores) in the past (and Walking With Beasts shows one driving sabertooths off a kill and eating it)... but not as active predators. The major problem is that the sloth has sharp teeth and looks like a cross between a gorilla and a bear.
  • Stock Dinosaurs abound in The Lost Continent — Featuring Pteranodon, Brontosaurus and Triceratops (the later two of which are apparently Immune to Bullets), as well as a Slurpasaur that all sound nothing like dinosaurs.
  • The film Mysterious Island was originally going to feature dinosaurs and prehistoric animals, but it was changed to giant animals later in production. One bit does survive, a Phorusrhacus of all things! The stop-motion model is good and the creature interacts well with the environment and actors--but the composure realized how silly it looked having a "Giant chicken" attack the cast, and made the music to emphasize that. To add insult to injury, the heroes eat the bird after roasting it up.
  • Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger features one of the earliest Saber-Toothed Cats in film. Frozen in ice and revived by black magic, it's a bit larger than it would have been in life. MST3K Mantra is in full effect, but the cat looks excellent!
  • Justified in Jurassic Park, which had a cloned Tyrannosaurus rex as well as a short scene with a Triceratops; they were both resurrected because of their popularity. It's largely responsible for the overuse of Velociraptors in other media.
    • The original film plays straight the trope with the aforementioned T. rex and Triceratops (and Parasaurolophus in the background of a scene), but averts it as well with Gallimimus instead of Ornithomimus or Struthiomimus, and the obscure-at-the-time Dilophosaurus. Using Brachiosaurus instead of Apatosaurus may be considered another partial aversion (especially if you remember that the sauropods belong to Apatosaurus in the novel). The Velociraptor/Deinonychus thing is a case on its own because dromeosaurids entered in pop-culture mainly after this film; it may be considered as another aversion though, since the iconic dromeosaurid in books and maybe in pre-JP fiction was Deinonychus. In total there are 2 Great Stocks, 2 Secondary Stocks, and 3 Non-Stocks (which became stock just after Spielberg which made Velociraptor the fifth Great Stock).
      • In a small twist of irony, in one of the early scenes of the film, Sam Neill's character has a bit of a laugh when a boy suggests that a Velociraptor fossil looks a bit like a "six foot turkey", given that Velociraptors in the Jurassic Park universe are big scary violent monsters. Have a look at this and tell me the kid's wrong. Deadly they may be, but real Velociraptors do look a bit like a turkey. Some would argue they're kinda cute too.
    • “The Lost World” features all the dinosaurs from the first movie except Dilophosaurus (probably with the purpose not to continue with such an incorrectly-portrayed animal) and Brachiosaurus, and also added other animals: two Great Stocks (Stegosaurus and Pteranodon), two Rarely-Seen Stocks (Pachycephalosaurus and Compsognathus) and one Non-Stock (the Diplodocus-like sauropod is officially Mamenchisaurus, but it’s not named and make only a brief cameo).
    • Jurassic Park 3 again features T. rex, Velociraptor and Parasaurolophus, and we also have the return of Brachiosaurus and Pteranodon. Completely new dinosaurs were Secondary or Rarely-Seen Stocks: Corythosaurus, Ankylosaurus and, in one of the few modern appearances, Ceratosaurus (all these have starring roles, and are not named). The only yet notable aversion is famously Spinosaurus (again, another example of dinosaur that become stock thanks to the series), especially seeing it killing “The King” Tyrannosaurus (a very discussed scene among both dino-fans and non-dino-fans).
      • The scene with Pteranodons is that of "they’re going to carry people away and eat 'em!". And these are Pteranodons (whose name means "wings with no tooth") with teeth. Also, there is no way that Pteranodon could lift up a person, even a 13-year old. A Pteranodon did briefly appear in the second film, where it was shown correctly without teeth, but it was perching on a branch, which a real Pteranodon wouldn't be able to do. Oh well. It’s worth noting that the movie did start with Grant telling us that the animals on the island aren't real dinosaurs because of mistakes in their creation and the mixing in of other genetic material. They'd need an actual lampshade to make it more obvious.
    • If we put together all the movies we have: 5 Great Stocks (only Apatosaurus is missing), 3 Secondary Stocks, and several Rarely-Seen Stocks. In a sense, the Jurassic Park series has not true Non-Stocks because almost all its dinosaurs which were not known among general public became automatically members of the stock ensemble thanks to endless JP-inspired imitations, comics and toys. It's interesting to note that the proportion of Stock Dinosaurs in the movies is much larger than that of the two novels (and the total number of genera is far smaller, see further). Spielberg decided it was better to play mainly this trope straight, since he was coping with large audiences...
  • The original Land Before Time played straight the trope with a Five-Man Band made of four dinosaurs and one pterosaur; three of the dinos are Great Stock (Apatosaurus, Triceratops, and Stegosaurus, with the sauropod obviously being the lead character), while the flying reptile is the iconic Pteranodon. The villain is, of course, a Tyrannosaurus. We can also see a brief cameo of the stock mammal-like reptile Dimetrodon.... with a snake-like tongue. However, this film make some aversions as well: the forth Five-Man Band dinosaur is the relatively obscure Saurolophus, although she's officially labeled Parasaurolophus, has some resemblance with "Anatosaurus", and her parents brood the eggs like Maiasaura; thus it may better qualified as a Mix and Match Critter duckbill (a true Parasaurolophus skeleton appears however). Rooter is an old-fashioned Euoplocephalus (albeit identified officially as Ankylosaurus), with two wrong spikes on the tip of its tail and very slow-moving like a turtle. Interesting to note that this may be one of the first times that the bonehead Pachycephalosaurus appears in a movie, although portrayed as a fearsome predator trying to kill Cera with headbutts!. We can also see an egg-robbing Struthiomimus/Ornithomimus, a generic ankylosaur, and some small bipedal dinos similar to Compsognathus or Hypsilophodon. And then some generic pterosaurs, several modern reptiles (lizards and turtles, one of them is snapping-like), a long-tailed frog, some insects (dragonflies, beetles, crickets and spiders), a little rodent-like mammal, and two unusual sea reptiles at the beginning of the film: the smaller one resembles an Avicephalian, while the larger one trying to eat the former may be a Thalattosuchian (fish-like crocodile). We have in total 5 Great Stocks, 4 Secondary Stocks (if you count the official identification of Rooter and Ducky) and 1 Rarely Seen Stock (the pachy), while Non-Stock Dinosaurs are totally absent (but may be present among non-dinos). The only missing Great Stock is the “raptor”, but only because the film was made before Jurassic Park (don’t worry, it has appeared in the first sequel which was made after JP…)
    • Curiously, the sequels (which we normally don't talk about but we'll make the exception here because it's interesting) have a friendly Tyrannosaur and have featured popular (or fun to animate) recently-discovered animals in the cast as well. Also, the cartoon series has a feathered Oviraptor (Ruby), as well as a returning Chomper (the friendly Tyrannosaurus) joining the main cast.
    • It is also worthy to note that anyone wishing to believe the former is true; Littlefoot has previously been identified as a Brontosaurus and a Bracheosaurus (which is not only the wrong species, but the wrong damn spelling) on video and DVD releases. It seems this is one time where Word of God deliberately Just Didn't Care or Did Not Do the Research.
  • The Spanish film Sound of Horror has an Invisible Dinosaur terrorize a group of treasure hunters. This trope is completely averted as, though the creature appears to be a medium-sized theropod, it is unidentifiable and is unidentified through the film.
  • 1960's Dinosaurus! has both a Tyrannosaurus and Brontosaurus, who of course Fight until the Brontosaurus sinks in quicksand. The T. rex then fights a Crane. Really!
  • Weird Checosloviakian film Journey to the Begining of Time starts averting it, using lesser known prehistoric mammals such as Uintatherium, Diatryma and proto-giraffes. But when they get to the Dinosaurs, it's all stock: Brontosaurus, Anatosaurus, Styracosaurus, Stegosaurus, Pteranodon and Ceratosaurus.
  • One Million Years B.C. has several stock dinosaurs: Ceratosaurus, Triceratops, Allosaurus, Brontosaurus, Pteranodon AND Rhamphorhynchus (oversized and short-tailed). Harryhausen also threw in a Giant Iguana and Giant Spider Homage to the original One Million BC which as nothing but Slurpasaurs. Awesomely, people thought that a giant turtle was used for the Archelon, blown up to massive proportions anyway, but that too was a stop motion model.
  • Cowboys vs. Dinosaurs film The Valley of Gwangi has Pteranodon, Struthiomimus, Styracosaurus and Allosaurus. The film also throws in prehistoric mammal Eohippus, the "Dawn Horse", which confuses the hell out of the cowboys and brings them all to the Lost World.
  • Planet of the Dinosaurs averts it pretty well. Sure, it has Brontosaurus, Allosaurus, Stegosaurus and a Tyrannosaurus that acts like a Horror Film Slasher to the stranded astronauts. It also has lesser known dinosaurs such as Polacanthus, Coelophysis, Dromiceiomimus and a Centrosaurus that's Immune to Lasers! It's a pretty bad film, but the FX are awesome.
  • The film of Edgar Rice Burroughs' The Land That Time Forgot has lots of Stock Dinosaurs, but more often averts it...through Special Effects Failure. Stock include Allosaurus, Diplodocus, Ceratosaurus, Triceratops, Rhamphorhynchus, Ceratosaurus, Plesiosaurus, a "Giant Crocodile" (visually more of a mososaur) and Styracosaurus that apparently all think humans are VERY tasty or just don't like them. The film also features the stegosaur Chialingosaurus but with the plating reversed. Oddly, despite the enlargement of them as well as the shortened neck, the Pterodactyls in the film are pretty accurate--they don't even use their claws to snatch people up, using their jaws instead. Too bad their wings and bodies are absolutely stiff in flight!
  • Japanese-American co-production The Last Dinosaur has 4 prehistoric animals: Tyrannosaurus rex, a Uintatherium (identified as a Ceratopsian), Triceratops and Pteranodon. Also, there were Cavemen.
  • B-Movie Aversion occurs in the...what can only be labeled as "Fantasy"/FurBikini epic When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth features Giant Elasmosaurs, Rhamphorhynchus, a Chasmosaurus and a creature that can only be seen as an homage to The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms. It also had People-eating Plants and Giant Crabsfor no particular reason other than to have more things to kill helpless cavemen with.
  • The creatively titled movie Dinosaur deliberately averted this trope in several ways:
    1. By avoiding all the four classic “Great Stock dinosaurs” in favor of three “Secondary Stock” and one "Rarely Seen Stock” equivalents which are related with their respective relatives. Brachiosaurus instead of Brontosaurus, Styracosaurus instead of Triceratops and Ankylosaurus rather than Stegosaurus are examples of the first case; the notable avoidance of T. rex for Carnotaurus makes the second case. (This one is obviously the most often mentioned aversion).
    2. Having several Rarely-Seen-Stock and/or Non-Stock creatures: the no-horned ceratopsian Pachyrhinosaurus, the small bonehead Stygimoloch (instead of the prototypical Pachycephalosaurus), egg-stealing Oviraptor instead of the classic ornithomimids, and even Microceratops and Talarurus, as well as the toothed bird Ichthyornis, the giant amphibian Koolasuchus and a flying, chameleon-behaving Longisquama (one of the few meddled animals).
    3. Showing two “great stock” animals in a non-traditional way: dromeosaurs here have the correct Velociraptor's shape, not the wrong Jurassic Park one, and the flying reptile carrying Aladar’s egg is the obscure Pteranodon sternbergi instead of the universally-known Pteranodon longiceps.
    4. Having a Secondary Stock dinosaur as the lead character: Iguanodon. The film has the merit to have done justice for the first time to one of the most important dinosaurs in paleontology. In conclusion, we have in total 2 Great Stocks, 6 Secondary Stocks (the four already mentioned plus Parasaurolophus and Struthiomimus), and 8 among Rarely Seen Stocks and Non Stocks.
  • The 2001 miniseries version of The Lost World included Allosaurus, Brachiosaurus, Diplodocus, Hypsilophodon and Iguanodon among its dinosaurs. It also featured a Pteranodon, an Ape-Man and an Entelodont (Prehistoric über-boar).
  • Though not a dinosaur film, 10,000 BC features stock prehistoric mammals instead. Mammoths and (Giant) Smilodons, and a group of silly-looking Terror Birds in the Old World. According to interviews, they were put in so they could technically have dinosaurs in the movie --without having dinosaurs in the movie.
  • Journey to the Center of the Earth has had several adaptations into feature films.
    • 1956: Features giant Dimetrodon
    • 1976: This production from Spain features two mosasaurs that do battle, giant turtles, Dimetrodon, creatures resembling giant lizards and a King Kong knockoff (which actually was featured in a dream sequence in the original novel).
    • 1998: A TV film has a predatory Iguanodon (lampshaded by the group's scientist) and Raptor People.
    • 2008: This 3D film features only one dinosaur, a giant Tyrannosaur with thumbs. In another scene, a flock of Plesiosaurs appear in an Always a Bigger Fish-type situation.
  • Averted in the third Ice Age movie, 'Dawn of the Dinosaurs'. Although a couple were recognizable such as the T. rex family, an ankylosaurus, pteranodons as mounts, and a briachiosaurus, there were also lesser-known dinosaurs such as a family of triceratops-looking Chasmosaurs, small stegosaurid Kentrosauruses, a lesser known bird dinosaur caudipteryx who nearly became a snack to mama T. rex's babies, giant pterodactyloid Quetzalcoatlus who were seen chasing after the pterosaur mounted Rudy and the possum brothers, ravenous wolfish Guanlongs, and a white Baryonyx named Rudy - Buck's eternal enemy and threat to the T. rex family.


  • Jules Verne classic A Journey to the Center of the Earth features a battle between an Ichthyosaur and Plesiosaur. The first use of prehistoric animals in fiction, done way back in 1864.
  • The novel Bleak House written by Charles Dickens has a mention of Megalosaurus (one of the two iconic dinosaurs at the time along with Iguanodon)
  • The Lost World by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1912) was the first novel to show an entire prehistoric fauna instead of isolated creatures, in a remote place in South America. It's interesting because it reveals to us which animals were the most popular among people at the time; their "stock ensemble" was different to ours. T. rex had been described only 7 years before, while Allosaurus was already known for 35 years (discovered during the Bone Wars in 1877); thus, T. rex was only starting to outcompete Allosaurus in popularity as the "most fearsome meat-eating dino". The other two large meat-eaters known by paleontologists were the horned Ceratosaurus and the prototypical Megalosaurus (the popularity of both began to fall only in 1970's, after the Dinosaur Renaissance). In the novel, human characters encounter an enormous theropod and argue about which of the four aforementioned genera it belongs (without succeeding to identify it). The other two dinosaurs are the still-popular Iguanodon and the Bone Wars offspring Stegosaurus, while there are no sauropods, no ceratopsians, and no hadrosaurs (this may be considered an aversion before the trope itself really got going, since these groups were already very well-known at the time); and obviously "raptors" are missing, since they were totally unknown at the time. In total, we surely have only one of the modern Great Stocks (Stegosaurus).
    • The same issue applies to the gigantic Pterosaurs encountered by our human heroes; the scientists of the group argue about which genus it is, and concluded that it may be either Dimorphodon or Pterodactylus (this may reveal that Pteranodon was not the iconic flying reptile yet, or maybe we're coping with another proto-aversion). Marine reptile were the same chosen by Jules Verne: Ichthyosaurus and Plesiosaurus (and not Elasmosaurus) Conan Doyle seems also to avert the trope (at least to modern eyes) about post-dinosaurian critters: we haven't any sabertooth or mastodon/mammoth, substituted by Toxodon, Glyptodont, the Terror Bird Phorusrhachos (all South American) and the "Irish Elk" Megaloceros. Some of them are not named due to Unreliable Narrator, but are pretty obvious to someone who knows.
  • The two books of Jurassic Park include a mix of dinosaurs.
    • The first novel takes a singular approach, playing straight the trope and largely averting it at the same time. This because we can see all the four Great Stock dinosaurs Tyrannosaurus, Apatosaurus (correctly named at last), Stegosaurus and Triceratops, but Secondary Stock dinos are completely missing (except for Styracosaurus which is only mentioned in the list but never shown). All the other creature were Non-Stock or Rarely Seen Stock. However, the following Spielberg's film made stock two of Crichton's animals: Velociraptor and Dilophosaurus (in both cases the movie followed the same errors from the book, adding some other inaccuracies that were missing in the relatively more accurate novel.
      • One word about "raptors" (a nickname invented by Crichton): few people know that both Deinonychus and Velociraptor show up in the story. They are both named Velociraptor only because Crichton was inspired by paleontologist Gregory Paul and its famous book "Predatory Dinosaurs of the World", in which Deinonychus antirrhopus was classified as Velociraptor antirrhopus (interesting to note that no other scientists have followed Paul in this theory, since these two animals were largely different between each others, as said in the main entry). At one point Alan Grant sees a hatchling and one of the scientist of the park says is Velociraptor mongoliensis (the true Velociraptor), but then Grant asks if they've recreated the antirrophus ones (aka Deinonychus) as well: the cloner guy says yes and tells to Alan that there already are adults of this species and shows them to the paleontologist. These are the raptors that later will chase the humans until the end of the novel. Deinonychus is the real Big Bad from the story (other than the rex of course).
    • The second novel "The Lost World" has a similar approach to the former: many Great Stock dinosaurs, some Secondary and much more Rarely Seen Stocks and Non Stocks. The most notable of the latter is perhaps Carnotaurus: this is the very first time that this horned predator has ever appeared in a successful pop-work, and became stock after its second important portrait in Disney's Dinosaur, possibly substituting the "out-fashioned" Ceratosaurus (however the third JP film decided to be traditional and showed the old Ceratosaur and not Carnotaurs).
  • Never one to leave any Animal Tropes uncovered, Dinotopia does what it can to subvert this as much as possible. The mix of animals is Justified by the fantastic setting. On top of that, the popular dinosaurs tend to be relegated to smaller roles; the main characters are instead made up of species who are the most fun to paint. Anatomically correctly, for the most part. Those were some damn good-looking books.
    • To expand because it's so much fun, the first dinosaur the main characters see is the rarely-seen stock Protoceratops instead of its overused relative Triceratops, and unlike most other dinosaurs in the setting she is able to speak (indeed, the species is well known for its translators due to their strong vocal range).
  • In Megamorphs #2, our heroes go back in time, morphing dinosaurs. Thanks to Tobias' (previously unmentioned) detailed knowledge of dinosaurs rivaling with that of a six year old's, they establish that they're in the late Cretaceous Era, and fight (among others) Spinosaurs. At the end of the book, Tobias says paleontologists believe Spinosaurs had died out by the mid-Cretaceous. "Who are you going to believe? Me, or a bunch of guys with old fossils?"
    • It does, however, ignore geography: Saltasaurus was from South America, Spinosaurus from Africa. In addition, Deinonychus and Kronosaurus were also from the Early Cretaceous, and the meteor impact is portrayed as happening in California, when it really took place in southeastern Mexico.
  • Largely averted in Raptor Red, as one would expect from a book written by a Paleontologist. Pretty much limited to Deinonychus, Iguanodon and arguably Utahraptor. The other dinosaurs are much less familiar - Acrocanthosaurus (a big theropod possibly related to Allosaurus), Astrodon (a smallish by sauropod standards relative of Brachiosaurus), and the ankylosaur Gastonia.
  • Featured in the Meg series by Steve Alten. The prologue of the first book features Dinosaurs, and Tyrannosaurus Rex is one of them. The Trench and Hell's Aquarium also makes use of stock marine reptiles, inasmuch as there are stock marine reptiles. (Kronosaurus, Liopleurodon, Elasmosaurus). In addition, the Megalodon itself could be considered a 'stock prehistoric creature'
  • Ten Little Dinosaurs featured a Pachycephalosaurus jumping on a bed and hitting his head, a Stegosaurus riding a bike and smashing his spike, a Tyrannosaurus Rex chewing on a mooth and breaking his tooth, a Spinosaurus rafting down a river and going all aquiver, an Archaeopteryx soaring down a peak and tweaking his beak, an Ankylosaurus playing at a street saying "a car to beat!", a Supersaurus being cool wearing his shades to school, a Chasmosaurus camping and sliding a lava spout, a Saurolophus at a baseball game and insulting the umpire and a Triceratops walking all alone and being dried up into bones.

Live Action TV

  • This has happened several times in the history of Super Sentai and Power Rangers.
    • The first season of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, adapted from Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger, had "Dinozords", of which only three were actual dinosaurs — Tyrannosaurus rex, Triceratops, and later on a Brachiosaurus. The others were a mastodon, a "sabertooth tiger", a Pteranodon (named so in Zyuranger, but called "Pterodactyl" in the American version), and a Godzilla-like "dragon".
    • Things were better in Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger, which was adapted into Power Rangers Dino Thunder. The main characters did have powers stemming from the overused stock Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Pteranodon, and Brachiosaurus; but eventually also got assistance from Stegosaurus, Dimetrodon, Pachycephalosaurus, Parasaurolophus, and Ankylosaurus zords. The Red Ranger also got a Styracosaurus-themed Shonen Upgrade and corresponding zord. The Sixth Ranger was cool, since his animal was a Tupuxuara, an obscure pterosaur with a large head crest. Neither show really identified the Tupuxuara, though, and Dino Thunder also failed to correctly name the Styracosaurus. In addition, Abaranger had an appearance by evil Carnotaurus and Chasmosaurus zords, but these hardly showed up in Dino Thunder.
    • Then in Engine Sentai Go-onger, the three final train-themed Engines (a mastodon, a Tyrannosaurus, and a Triceratops) originally arrived in the dimension known as the Human World (Earth) when it was originally the Dino World (despite the mastodon not being a dinosaur). In Power Rangers RPM they are merely known as the "Paleozord(s)" and have no historical setting.
    • Samurai Sentai Shinkenger features the Kyoryu Origami (Kyoryu = Dinosaur) which is an undefined Sauropod with pointy teeth (which is believed to be the Vulcanodon). Power Rangers Samurai tried to pass it off as a shark instead.
  • People in Heroes-related literature and discussion often insist on calling the animal Hiro is fighting in Isaac's painting a T. rex", when it is actually a Carnotaurus. . A Carnotaurus has a bulldog snout, horns, warts, and three prominent fingers. The T. rex had two (not counting the vestigial one).
  • Primeval actually manages to play this trope totally straight while averting it at the same time; While almost all of the prehistoric creatures to appear are more obscure than those seen in most media, the only actual dinosaurs to appear are the ever-popular raptors.
    • Also the dodos, Hesperornis, and terror birds, if you're a cladist...
    • The third season broke the trend, featuring three dinosaurs: a Giganotosaurus, a Velociraptor (which is accurately sized for once), and a Dracorex (though a great deal of liberty was taken with its design, giving it an Amargasaurus spine and a crapload of spikes.)
      • Actually the Velociraptor wasn't quite "accurately sized". It was a baby. Meaning we still didn't get a "proper-sized" Velociraptor. We never see an adult in the third season. Same thing happens with the Deinonychus, the only ones seen in the third season aren't fully grown. However we do see adult Deinonychus in the second season.
  • Sir Arthur Conan Doyles the Lost World featured most, if not all, of the stock dinosaurs, with raptors being the most common.
  • The original Land of the Lost featured all sorts of stock dinosaurs, and gave them nicknames on top of it. Tyannosaurus, Allosaurus, Coelophysis, Triceratops, Apatosaurus (called Brontosaurus) and Pteranodon among them. They also had other monsters such as a Two-Headed Elasmosaur and a fire-breathing Dimetrodon. The 90s remake featured Triceratops, Stegosaurus, Parasaurolophus, Apatosaurus, a Mosasaur and Pteranodon. It also mentioned or showed remains of prehistoric mammals such as Dire Wolves and Smilodon. The Movie features Dromeosaurids, Compsognathids, Pteranodon, Allosaurus and Tyrannosaurus.
  • Reading Rainbow had an episode entitled Digging up Dinosaurs which featured clips form One Million Years B.C. amongst museum visits and book readings.
  • Prehistoric Park has a few stock, but a few less common creatures as well. Tyrannosaurus Rex, Triceratops, Ornithomimus, Parasaurolophus, a Woolly Mammoth and Smilodon round out the core stock. The series also includes Elasmotherium, Titanosaurs, Microraptor, Phorusrhacos, Meganeura, Pulmonscorpius, Arthropleura, Nyctosaurus, Incisivosaurus, Mei long, the Tyrannosaur Albertosaurus, Deinosuchus, the amphibian Crassigyrinus, Toxodon and a Cave Bear.
  • Lost Tapes has a few prehistoric animals, but few of them are stock. Megalania, Gigantopithicus, Elasmosaurus, a Mosasaur, a Azhdarchidae Pterrosaur (acting like a shrike of all things) and a descendant of Xiphactinus.
  • Kamen Rider OOO, among his other animal-based powers, gets a Super Mode form based on the great stock trinity of Tyrannosaurus rex, Triceratops, and Pteranodon.
  • Terra Nova has so far featured very few, most notably the Brachiosaurs and the Ankylosaurus. Their large carnivore role is filled by Carnotaurus rather than T. rex and their raptors come from two different fictional species.

Paleo Art

  • Artist Charles R. Knight is responsible for setting up a lot of the iconic images of Dinosaurs. For a while, he had more artwork in more museums than any other artist because of his dinosaur restorations. He painted virtually every stock dinosaur mentioned and then some. The artwork he created was used as reference material for several films (including The Lost World (1925), King Kong and Fantasia) and were reprinted in children's books until the 1970s, and other books on paleontology include them for nostalgia purposes. Ironically, even though some of his paintings are over 100 years old, a select few remain surprisingly accurate to our current understanding of Dinosaurs--he was the first to portray Dinosaurs in the posture we now accept (IE: not dragging its tail), and did so with his iconic image of Tyrannosaurus Rex.
  • The Mural "The Age of Reptiles" crafted between 1944-1947 helped define much of the popular image of dinosaurs as well, and covered time periods not generally covered in most other sources. Despite being out of date it is still on display where it was painted at the Yale-Peabody Museum--and is appropriately dinosaurian in size: Over 14ft tall and over 114ft long.
  • The 1964 World's Fair had an exhibit of "Life Size" dinosaurs supported by the Sinclair Oil company (whose logo was a brontosaurus). It featured the following dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Brontosaurus, Stegosaurus, Anatosaurus, Corythosaurus, Ornitholestes and Struthiomimus. Take a look at the models here.
  • Famous palaeontologist Bob Bakker (one of the main authors of the "dinosaur renaissance") depicted active, warm-blooded dinosaurs in the sixties. Its iconic drawing is a fast-running Deinonychus (the father of the "renaissance"). Many artists have followed its example in the next years:
    • Palaeontologist Gregory Paul depicted many theropods in black-and-white in his successful book Predatory Dinosaurs of the World; these drawings was a major font of inspiration for Michael Crichton and his Jurassic Park. He's also co-responsible to certain errors present in the novel (in particular the Velociraptor-Deinonychus misunderstanding).
    • John Sibbick has been perhaps the most influential dino-artist at the end of the twentieth century and portrayed many lively and colorful dinosaurs and other ancient creatures that now are stock in modern dinosaur books (to the point that many modern illustrations have the same colour schemes created by Sibbick for each dinosaur).
  • Czech artist Zdenek Burian was the European equivalent of Knight, or successor, since his most famous and influential works came only after the "Knight Era". His paintings have been reproduced and recreated countless of times in many, many books, and some of his classic set-ups (mountain-like "Brontosaurus" at a lake, Iguanodon standing in a Godzilla-pose, as well as his incredibly famous rendition of an erect Tarbosaurus) and color choices (blue Archaeopteryx) have become memes of their own among paleo-artists.


  • A lot of toy companies, starting in the 1980s, began to subvert the stock after having set it up for years. Sure, the stock dinosaurs are the most common, but with regular frequency, non-stock dinosaurs appear.
  • The Dinobots in Transformers transform into a Tyrannosaurus rex, Triceratops, Brontosaurus, Stegosaurus and Pteranodon. Other characters with dinosaur alt-modes followed, mostly using the dinosaurs popularized by the Dinobots (with the exception of Sludge, the Brontosaurus) - for instance, Megatron in the animal-themed Beast Wars was a T. rex, and both a Mini-Con team and the Transformers Animated version of the Dinobots were each a trio of a T. rex, a Triceratops, and a Pteranodon.
    • However, exceptions occurred, especially in the aforementioned Beast Wars: Dinobot (an inaccurate Velociraptor), Hardhead (Pachycephalosaurus, whose toy was retooled from Dinobot' it was a weird Pachycephalosaurus), Bazooka (Ankylosaurus), Archadis (Archaeopteryx) and Magmatron (who had three beast modes: Giganotosaurus, Elasmosaurus and Quetzalcoatlus). It's interesting to note that nearly all of these characters were exclusive to the Japanese fiction, although the toys got released in the US (where Magmatron's three beast modes were misidentified horribly. How does a Giganotosaurus get confused with a raptor, anyway?).
    • The "Power Core Combiners" line, featuring "Commander" bots that can combine with sets of drones, had its own set of Dinobots that used different dinos than the standard team: the Commander, Grimstone, is a Styracosaurus, and his drones are a Dimetrodon, a Parasaurolophus, a Pachycephalosaurus, and an Ankylosaurus.
  • LEGO has examples aplenty:
    • The dinosaur-subtheme of Adventurers had adult and hatchling Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Stegosaurus and the kind of "Pteranodon" that's nowadays known as Geosternbergia. There were no raptors, unfortunately, but a dead one did appear in an image in the building manuals, which had a section dedicated to dino science.
    • Dinosaurs, a line featuring four basic, giant-sized action figures which could be rebuilt into other stock dinos or even Seldom-Seen Species. These were:
      • TyrannosaurusSpinosaurus, Parasaurolophus and Ouranosaurus
      • StyracosaurusTriceratops, Centrosaurus and Camarasaurus
      • BrachiosaurusDiplodocus, Plateosaurus and Plesiosaurus
      • MosasaurusPostosuchus, Dimetrodon and Iguanodon
      • There were also promo sets of prehistoric babies sold in polybags: Iguanodon, Brachiosaurus, Ankylosaurus and Dimetrodon
    • LEGO Studios had two sets dedicated to Jurassic Park III, and these had Spinosaurus (just a recolor of the original Dinosaurs model), as well as a laughable-looking block-Pteranodon and block-raptors (may be justified in that they were meant to represent fake dinos on a movie set).
    • Dino 2010 and its US-counterpart Dino Attack had "mutant lizards", a "raptor", a clear Ptero-Soarer and a "T-Rex". These were all supposed to be mutant freaks, so apart from the only even slightly recognizable dino of the bunch (T-Rex), it's neigh impossible to deduce what species they might be.
    • Dino, an action-oriented setline has Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Pteranodon, some kind of raptor and a delightfully refreshing Coelophysis.

Video Games

  • Star Fox Adventures had six dinosaur tribes: Triceratops, Tyrannosaurus, Apatosaurus, Pteranodon with a really long tail, Woolly Mammoth (sigh...), and humanoid mutant.
  • Primal Rage featured two Palette Swapped T. rexes named Diablo and Sauron and a dromeosaur named Talon, who was actually depicted with feathers. Armadon and Vertigo were both Mix-and-Match Critters, the former being a bipedal ceratopsian/ankylosaur/stegosaur hybrid while the latter was based of the more obscure Sellosaurus with a bit of cobra thrown in. The other two main characters, Blizzard and Chaos, on the other hand, were giant apes instead of dinosaurs.
  • While the Pokémon games do have stock dinosaurs (such as Aerodactyl = Pterosaur, Rhyperior = Ankylosaur/Theropod/Rhinoceros, etc.), there's also more obscure species/genera in there; Sceptile, for example, resembles the REAL Dilophosaurus.
    • The Pokémon actually revived from fossils generally avert this. Aerodactyl is mentioned above, Rampardos and Bastiodon are the stock pachycephalosaur and ceratopsian, and Archeops is an archaeopteryx, but Omastar is an ammonite, Kabutops is a horseshoe crab, Cradily is a sea pen, and Armaldo is, amazingly, an anomalocarid, and Carracosta could have been based on a number of prehistoric sea turtle such as Archelon.
  • Dino Crisis at first features Stock Dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus, Velociraptor (Jurassic Park sized), Compsognathus and Pteranodon, but also features the weirdest of the weird Therizinosaurus (albeit not as large as we now know it to be, and predatory). The sequel adds Giganotosaurus, Allosaurus, Oviraptor, Triceratops, Inostrancevia (a Gorgonopsid of some size), Mosasaurus and Plesiosaurus. The third one...has dinosaur-derived genetic experiments.
  • Fossil Fighters uses many of the stock favorites as rare and special characters, while the game's Com Mons (and some of the more powerful types) tend to be more obscure dinos. Although your "starter" is always an Altispinax/Beckelspinax, but at the beginning, you get to answer a series of questions in order to pick a stock dinosaur that is "special" to you (such as Triceratops, Maiasaura, Parasaurolophus, etc).
  • Jurassic Park Operation Genesis, as a Jurassic Park simulator, includes stock species, but it actually ranks them according to the actual popularity in the real world (with an obvious Jurassic Park bias). Stock species include Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Stegosaurus, Ankylosaurus, Brachiosaurus, Velociraptor, Allosaurus, Spinosaurus, Pachycephalosaurus, Parasaurolophus (along with Corythosaurus and Edmontosaurus) and Gallimimus; as well as the seldom seen Styracosaurus, Dilophosaurus (it IS Jurassic Park after all) and Ceratosaurus, but some choices are quite rare, such as Acrocanthosaurus, Carcharodontosaurus, Albertosaurus, Ouranosaurus, Camarasaurus, Torosaurus, Kentrosaurus, Homalocephale (for some reason MORE popular that Pachycephalosaurus) and Dryosaurus, whose popularity is so low that they may as well account for some expensive and prone to die ambient.
    • Examination of the game files show several Dummied Out species, and those include both stock and non-stock species: Deinonychus, Ornithomimus, Iguanodon, Apatosaurus and Diplodocus are the most striking ones, but there are also familiar faces such as Baryonyx, Maiasaura or Tenontosaurus, as well as really rare dinosaurs such as Alioramus, Yangchuanosaurus, Panoplosaurus, Wuerhosaurus or Thescelosaurus.
  • Telltale Games Jurassic Park episodic series features most of the classic stock dinos from the film series (Well, the first two movies, anyway), along with newcomers Herrerasaurus, Troodon, and even a Mosasaur for a particularly terrifying underwater sequence.
  • Dino D-Day subverts the trope by having (of a total 7 dino classes) only 2 "stock" dinos. Velociraptor and Tyrannosaurus Rex. The other five are the Dilophosaur, Desmatosuchus, Stygimoloch, Protoceratops, and Styracosaur.
  • Several zones in World of Warcraft include stock dinosaur Expys. Most prominent is Un-Goro, which includes T-Rex, Raptors, Stegosaurus, and Pterodactyls.
  • Gohma Strikers from Asura's Wrath seem like Stock Brachiosauruss at first due to their shape, but this is actually a subversion: They are actually creatures with the body of a turtle and the head of a King Cobra, But it invokes the look of a stock sauropod, thus the subversion.
  • The second Zoo Tycoon game features stock dinosaurs, but it also features many more obscure species.


  • The Adventures of Dr. McNinja features Paeleontologist Raptor Banditos, one of whom becomes his sidekick. It's also worth noting that when the author was e-mailed about a velociraptor being more like a "Deinonychus, or a Utahraptor," he lampshaded it, responding "I just want to let you know that all that real life dinosaur stuff is crazy confusing in my brain, and I'm just going by the Jurassic Park version."
  • Irregular Webcomic has the the President of the United States of America. And he just beat Cthulhu (we hope) for second term.
  • Dinosaur Comics has three stock dinosaur appearing in each issue: Tyrannosaurus rex, a dromeosaurid and an ornithomimid. The last two are aversions if you count the genera: the dromeosaur is Utahraptor and the ostrich-mimic dino is Dromiceiomimus (the least-famous of the three North American ornithomimids).
  • Somewhat averted in the frequent dinosaur cameos in Chaff City - Dromaeosaurus, Carcharodontosaurus and what appears to be a Carnotaurus have all made recent appearances in the strip.

Web Original

  • The Tyrannosaur Chronicles: Partially averted. There aren't too many Great/Secondary Stock Dinosaurs (Tyrannosaurus, Deinonychus, Velociraptor, Stegosaurus, Styracosaurus), while Rarely-Seen / Non-Stock animals are numerous (Albertosaurus, Centrosaurus, Lambeosaurus, Oviraptor, Giganotosaurus, Leaellynasaura, Troodon, Daspletosaurus, Hypacrosaurus, Thescelosaurus, Saurornithoides and even the enigmatic Serendipaceratops).

Western Animation

  • The Oldest Animated Dinosaur is Gertie the Dinosaur. She's a Diplodocus. In 1914, it was a very popular dinosaur, partly because Steel Mogul Andrew Carnegie had one named after himself and balyhoo'd the hell out of it.
  • Will Vinton's claymation edu-tainment film Dinosaur! (1980) has many pieces of humor, and as many dinosaurs. Tyrannosaurus, Styracosaurus, Brachiosaurus, Diplodocus, Ankylosaurus, Stegosaurus, Ultrasaurus, Triceratops, long necked pterosaurs, Corythosaurus, an ornithomimid and possibly hypsilophodonts.
  • The DinoRiders franchise had dinosaurs from virtually everywhere, plus the obligatory pterosaurs and Dimetrodon. A spinoff line of prehistoric mammals provided another example of this trope, with an entelodont (giant pig-thing) alongside a giant ground sloth, saber-toothed cat, and woolly mammoth. Then again, this is a series that concerns the exploits of aliens waging war on prehistoric Earth with the help — voluntary in the case of the good guys, not so much in the case of the bad guys — of the animals. Rule of Cool heals many a wound.
  • For the record, in the pathetic Dino Squad, a Velociraptor is the villain and another is on the protagonists' side. The teens' dino forms are Tyrannosaurus, Stegosaurus, Spinosaurus, Styracosaurus, and Pteranodon. Or so the official Web site says, but they've gotten species wrong at least once, reportedly. Just saying.
  • The otherwise typical 80's animated series Dinosaucers took a unique approach to this; Each of the heroes was a different type of stock dinosaur, with an Evil Counterpart of a different, roughly comparable species. The Hero was an Allosaurus, the Big Bad was a Tyrannosaurus Rex, and so on.
  • Steggy from the Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers episode "Prehysterical Pet" is a space-traveling Stegosaurus that is usually smaller than a Chihuahua, but quite smart (although even in that state he voluntarily acts like a dog). It is Earth's food that causes both his body to grow and his brain to shrink, and he needs food from his (and the other dinos') homeworld to return to normal.
  • Partially averted in the Ice Age : Dawn of the Dinosaurs has several Great and Secondary Stock dinosaurs/alleged dinosaurs; Brachiosaurus, Tyrannosaurus, Ankylosaurus, Pteranodon are the most evident, with several others which make only brief cameos; but there are also a few Rarely-Seen-Stock and Non-Stock species; Guanlong (a variety of tyrannosaur) instead of Dromaeosaurs, some Quetzalcoatlus, nonstandard Pachycephalosaurs and the main villain is a sail-less spinosaurid (Baryonyx, Suchomimus or an altered Spinosaurus)--hard to tell what it is: if one of the first two is true, it's been inflated in mores way than one (Baryonyx and Suchomimus were smaller than T. rex).
    • Word of God says Rudy's a Baryonyx: this is the first time "Claws" appears in a pop-successful work: this may qualify it as the last entry in the Stock Dinosaurs list.
    • This series partially averts the trope about mammals as well: obviously woolly mammoths and smilodons are in the spotlight, but we can see many critters that resemble some unfamiliar prehistoric mammals (although not named, thus acting as Genius Bonus). And the two marine reptiles in the second movie seem Non-Stock as well, with one of them resembling fish-like sea crocodilomorphs.
  • Nicely averted in the Jim Henson series Dinosaur Train- while the main character is a T. rex, some of the lesser known dinosaurs like Stygimoloch, Daspletosaurus, and Euoplocephalus all have episodes devoted to them.
  • Granted they're mechanical, but Transformers invokes this with the Dinobots. We've got Grimlock (T. rex), Slag (Triceratops), Sludge (Brontosarus/Apatosarus), and Snarl (Stegosarus). Swoop technically doesn't count since he is a Pteranodon. On the Decepticon side there was Trypticon, whose robot mode was a Godzilla-sized T. rex. Bonus points for acctually looking like Godzilla.

Real Life

  • It's interesting to note Science and Pop-Culture are closely tied about the dinosaur argument perhaps more than any other scientific field. Many paleontological circles have begun to receive more financial funding just after the Jurassic Park-mania, and almost with the purpose of thanking Crichton and Spielberg some paleontologists have started naming new species of predatory dinosaurs with Jurassic Park-related names since that. In particular, almost all the new species of dromeosaurids have been called with the suffix -raptor (while among pre-Jurassic Park dromeosaurs, no one of these has that suffix except for the iconic Velociraptor...)
  • Canadian basketball team from Toronto has been named Toronto Raptors: another gift Spielberg has given to us.
  1. In Italy was nearly as popular as Jurassic Park itself, and even stood the competition from the WWD series in the 2000s.