Celebrity Dinosaurs: Roll Call

I am interested in what I think of as “celebrity dinosaurs”–dinosaurs that we have imbued with personalities and cultural weight. Dinosaurs who you can have conversations about as if they were real individuals. Dinosaurs who are characters as much as any fictional creations.

This is a two-part participatory project. I am currently still working on the first part, which is to ask people for lists of celebrity dinosaurs. I don’t give people any specific prompts, I just as them to write down as many celebrity dinosaurs as they can think of. I want to know which ones they really remember, which ones are the closest to the tips of their tongues.

Much of my paleontology work revolves around the idea that dinosaurs have deeply seeped into human consciousness; celebrity dinosaurs are essentially the most obvious examples of that process. I usually want to know, why do we think dinosaurs looked the way we think they did? Celebrity dinosaurs lead the way to these mental impressions.

I could also harvest data from internet searches–does X have more hits than Y?–but that would necessarily involved me starting with some kind of list of my own, and I want to see which dinosaurs really exist in the current public consciousness.

The second step will be to take the list I generate from people and then do more surveys–“how many of the dinosaurs below have you heard of?”–as well as some internet analysis.

The list below was generated from 60 participants. They were asked to list celebrity dinosaurs from any medium, such as TV shows, movies, video games, visual artwork, books, etc.

People were also allowed to just name a show (etc.) if they couldn’t think of the names of the characters in it. You can see examples of this below, such as the 18 mentions of Land before Time.

This list contains a number of creatures that I wouldn’t consider dinosaurs, but seemingly the respondents do, or at least they think they are close enough. I included all responses unless they were flagrantly off-topic.

This list goes from the highest number of mentions to the least. There are 157 different dinosaurs/show listed here. There are actually some entire shows, comics, and books about dinosaurs (for instance, Dinosaur King, Dino Squad, Power Rangers Dino Thunder, Super Dinosaur, Dinosaur Comics, Dinosaur Bob, etc.) that aren’t even listed here, so this is just a start.

Land Before Time: Little Foot22
Dino, Flintstones19
Toy Story: Rex19
Land Before Time18
Jurassic Park I12
Super Mario: Yoshi12
Jurassic Park: T-rex (Roberta)11
Jurassic Park: Blue10
Land Before Time: Cera8
Land Before Time: Ducky8
Land Before Time: Petri7
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Baby6
Land Before Time: Spike6
Tiny, Meet the Robinsons6
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show5
Jurassic Park: Velociraptors5
Reptar, Rugrats5
Sinclair logo5
Dino Train4
Dino Train: Don4
Dino Train: Mr Conductor4
Disney’s “Dinosaur” movie4
Field Museum’s Sue (notes she has a twitter persona)4
Jurassic World4
Land of the Lost: Grumpy4
Night at the Museum’s Sue4
Devil Dinosaur3
Dino Train: Buddy3
Dino Train: Shiny3
Dino Train: Tiny3
Disney’s “Dinosaur” movie: Alladar3
Dragon Tails3
Jurassic Park: Indominus rex3
Super Mario: Bowser3
The Good Dinosaur3
Barney: Baby Bop2
Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (Rhedosaur)2
Cecil the Coelophysis, PRI2
Dino Train: Mr Pteranodon2
Dino Train: Mrs Pteranodon2
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Robbie2
Far Side’s smoking dinosaurs2
Jurassic Park: Charlie2
Jurassic Park: Delta2
Jurassic Park: Echo2
Nessie the plesiosaur2
Paciifc Rim Kaiju2
Super Mario2
Toy Story: Trixie2
Amazing World of Gumball (Tina, Molly. Mr. Rex)1
Ancalagon the Black1
Barney: Trixie1
Big Al (Walking with Dinosaurs)1
Crystal Palace Dinosaurs1
Danny and the Dinosaur1
Denver “The Last Dinosaur”1
Dinny, Alley Oop’s pet1
Dino Croc1
Dino the Beast1
Dino Train: Hank1
Dino Train: King Cryolophosaurus1
Dino Train: Mikey1
Dino Train: Mr Mayor the Kosmoceratops1
Dino Train: Ned1
Dinotopia sequel1
Dio, Jojo’s Bozarre Adventures 71
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Charlene1
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Earl1
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Fran1
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Grandma1
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Mr Richfield1
Disney “Dinosaurs” TV show: Roy1
Disney’s “Dinosaur” movie: Carnotaurus1
Dragon from Shrek1
Dry Bones1
Dupree, Adventure Time1
Extreme Dinosaurs show1
Fantasia dinosaurs1
George? From kids book1
Giant Behemoth1
Gill-man (Creature from the Black Lagoon)1
Jane the Dinosaur1
Johnny Quest flying dino1
Journey to the Center of the Earth1
The Lost World: Jurassic Park1
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom1
Jurassic Park: Clever Girl1
Jurassic Park: Indoraptor1
Jurassic Park: Mosasaurus1
King Dinosaur1
King Kong’s T. rex1
Kong Long Bao Bei1
Land Before Time: Cera’s dad1
Land Before Time: Chomper1
Land Before Time: Ducky’s mom1
Land Before Time: Little Foot’s Grandma1
Land Before Time: Little Foot’s Grandpa1
Land Before Time: Little Foot’s mom1
Land Before Time: Ozzy1
Land Before Time: Petri’s mom1
Land Before Time: Sharptooth1
Land Before Time: Spot1
Land Before Time: Trish1
Land of the Lost: Scarface1
Lego movie raptors1
Lost World (original): brontosaurus1
Most Power Ranger Zords1
My t-rex ate your stick figure family car sticker1
Old Lace1
Pokemon: Aerodactyle1
Pokemon: Axue1
Pokemon: Charizard1
Pokemon: Cubone1
Pokemon: Ryperior1
Pokemon: Tyranotaur1
Pokemon: Tyrunt1
Prickle, Gumby1
Red (Raptor Red?)1
Rudy, Ice Age1
Sigmund the Sea Monster1
Steve, Dilbert1
Super Mario: Birdo1
Super Mario: Bowser, Jr1
Super Mario: Dry Bowser1
Super Mario: Iggy Koopa1
Super Mario: Lemmy Koopa1
Super Mario: Ludwig Koopa1
Super Mario: Morton Koopa1
Super Mario: Pink Yoshi1
Super Mario: Wendy Koopa1
Swamp Thing1
The Meg1
The Waterhorse1
Thuggo, The Terrible Thunderlizards (Brad Garrett voice)1
Tricky, Star Fox Adventures1
Valley of Gwanji Allosaurus1
“We’re Back: A Dinosaur’s Story”1
Wexler, Axe Cop1
World of Warcraft theropod mounts1
Zebo, iCarly1

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