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Kids Love Dinosaurs

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That's a kid's literal bucket list of dinosaur friends, mind you.

Truth in Television. There is something of an idea that dinosaurs are kiddie, or that dinosaur products and fiction should solely be aimed at children (especially young boys).

One reason this trope exists is that dinosaurs are a lot like fairy tale creatures, particularly dragons. Also, as they don't exist anymore (yes, we know...), you need a lot of imagination to reconstruct how they lived, and children use their imagination much more than adults. Dinosaur toys and media are often aimed at boys due to stereotypes and gender roles that boys like "cool things" while girls like "cute things" (which dinosaurs usually aren't seen as, though feathered and baby dinosaurs are often seen as cute).

Sometimes, paleontologists will describe themselves as people who never "grew out of" their dinosaur phase. As a result, adults who still like dinosaurs can be stereotyped as Manchildren. Compare Boys Like Creepy Critters, All Girls Like Ponies, Princess Phase.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • There are three things that Akito of Kodocha likes: Sushi, Sana, and dinosaurs. "Like" is his way of saying "love".
  • Likely why almost all of the partner Digimon of the lead character in the Digimon series always resembles a T. Rex, to appeal to the target demographic of young boys. Special mention goes to Guilmon, who in-universe was created by a human child, and Agumon, who is the Series Mascot for the entire franchise.
  • In Negima! Magister Negi Magi, Negi is a serious and mature little boy who holds down a job as a teacher. When offered a time machine he immediately regressed to his proper emotional age at the thought of going back in time to see dinosaurs.
  • Although not exactly a kid, Royal Brat King Dedede in the episode "Fossil Fools: Part 1" of Kirby: Right Back at Ya! gains an interest in dinosaurs after a surprising find at the local dig site.
  • The main cast of Doraemon, consisting of four human children and a robotic cat, always get excited whenever they encounter dinosaurs in their adventures.

    Comic Strips 
  • Calvin of Calvin and Hobbes involves dinosaurs in many of his fantasies and daydreams, doodles them during class, and is keen to study them unlike almost any other subject.
  • Jason of FoxTrot is a huge dinosaur fanatic that he once messaged the White House to encourage dinosaur cloning.

    Films — Animation 
  • Aaron from The Mitchells vs. the Machines is an exaggeration of the trope. He's the youngest member of the Mitchell family and he's massively obsessed with dinosaurs; his Establishing Character Moment shows him calling every number in the phone book just to find someone to talk about dinosaurs with. His phone case, his bedroom, and the t-shirt he wears are all dinosaur-themed, and he's extremely distressed when the family goes to a dinosaur-themed tourist trap and he sees how inaccurate the dinosaur statues are.
    • His neighbor, Abby Posey, is a more normal version. While not obsessed, she is still shown to really like dinosaurs, as shown when the families find each the same tourist trap. When she meets Aaron she mentions how "these should have feathers" and offers him a dinosaur pencil topper like the one she just got, which causes him to develop a huge crush on her.
  • In The Secret Life of Pets 2, Katie and Chuck's toddler son Liam has dinosaur toys in his room.
  • Toy Story has Mister Potato Head play the role of One-Eyed Bart, robbing the town bank, aided by Slinky Dog as his force field dog. Fortunately, Sheriff Woody has a coup fourre at hand with Rex, as a force field dog-eating dinosaur. This is all in Andy's playtime scenario, yet his Tyrannosaurus Rex plays The Lancer to Woody's The Hero.
  • In We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story, four dinosaurs are brought to modern times and "nicefied" by making them intelligent enough to be displayed in a museum where kids would be able to meet and play with them, as Captain Neweyes' Wish Radio revealed that it is the dream of a lot of kids to meet real life dinosaurs. Later, they are hiding in plain sight in a giant parade and start a musical number, with all the children singing and dancing. When they are discovered, all the adults start to freak out, but the kids are mostly in awe. But then even later, the trope is subverted by Professor Screweyes, who devolves them to their former feral selves to put them in his Circus of Fear because his Fright Radio revealed that a lot of kids have nightmares about monsters, aka scary dinosaurs.

    Films — Live Action 
  • In Godzilla (2014), Ford's son, Sam, loves dinosaurs, having a bunch of toy figurines. Upon seeing Godzilla on the news, he excitedly tells his mother "Mommy, look! Dinosaur!", unaware of the destruction Godzilla's presence is bringing.
  • Jurassic Park:
    • Jurassic Park (1993): Tim (the younger of the two kids being given a tour of the park) loves dinosaurs and continuously pesters Dr. Grant with questions about them. Likewise, when Grant sees a Triceratops for the first time, he reacts with an adorable, childlike awe, soon admitting Triceratops was his favorite dinosaur as a little boy. Subverted by the park itself, which was created to appeal to everyone, but John Hammond certainly admits that kids in particular will probably love it.
    • Jurassic World: Gray (the younger of the two Mitchell brothers) is obsessed with dinosaurs and cannot hold in his excitement upon visiting the park. Once again, the park itself is a subversion as it meant to be appeal to people of all ages.

  • Animorphs: In the Megamorphs novel In the Time of Dinosaurs, Tobias (a teenager trapped in the body of a hawk) reveals that he loved playing with dinosaurs when he was younger. His knowledge turns out to be helpful when he and Rachel are inadvertently separated from the rest of the group.
  • The classic children's book Danny and the Dinosaur by Syd Hoff features a boy named Danny who encounters a living dinosaur in a museum. The book revolves around their relationship and activities together. And yes, the dinosaur's name is Dinosaur.
  • In the children's book It Hurts When I Poop, Ryan is a little boy of about three who loves to play with pretend dinosaurs.
  • In Jurassic Park (1990), Alan Grant loves kids because they share his enthusiasm for dinosaurs, which is rare in adults outside of paleontology circles.
  • Roys Bedoys:
    • Roys is sometimes seen playing with toy dinosaurs, and in “Learn to Share, Roys Bedoys!”, he draws a dinosaur.
    • Loys also sometimes plays with toy dinosaurs.
    • In “We Have Guests, Roys Bedoys!”, Hopper wants to play with Roys’s toy T-Rex.
  • The protagonist of Tick Tock, You're Dead! early on complains about how he's bored out of his mind due to his family spending a whole day in the Museum of Natural History for their New York trip where he's forced to babysit his annoying kid brother, but "at least the dinosaur exhibits make it tolerable".
  • Angela Nicely: In “Cupcake Wars!”, when Miss Darling asks the class what they want for the fair, the twins suggest a dinosaur stall.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Barney & Friends features the titular purple Tyrannosaurus rex and his dinosaur friends befriending, playing with, and teaching a group of enthusiastic children.
  • Attempts to be invoked in the iCarly episode "iCarly Saves TV'' when Carly, Sam, and Freddie are approached by a TV producer who wants to turn their web show into a TV show. The cast enjoys it at first, until the producer starts making changes that get more and more ridiculous and stupid, one being including a talking dinosaur named Zeebo because "kids love dinosaurs." Carly and Sam quickly get annoyed with Zeebo's behavior, with Sam eventually beating him up.
  • Dino Dan is a kids educational show about a young boy named Dan who is obsessed with dinosaurs, who's the only one who can see them.
  • In Just Shoot Me!, Maya falls in love with a dim-witted male model, whose immaturity is shown by his love of dinosaurs (which he learned about in a restaurant place mat).
  • At the end of the Quantum Leap episode "Another Mother", while Sam is waiting to leap out, Al entertains Teresa (who can see Al because she's five years old) with holographic projections of dinosaurs. Teresa is able to name all of them.
  • Super Sentai and Power Rangers are in the toy-sales business, and one of their go-to themes is dinosaurs. (For the record, some others are animals, cars, and ninjas.) Notably, when there was a sales slump and they had to start moving merch fast, they used dinosaurs to do it (with Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger).
  • Walking with Dinosaurs:
    • The original Walking With Dinosaurs line averts this as it is a serious and violent, age neutral speculative documentary series.
    • Prehistoric Planet was a Lighter and Softer cut of the series aimed at children, but even then it didn't stray from showing how graphic nature can be.
    • Played straight with the theatrical movie, Walking With Dinosaurs 3D. Due to Executive Meddling in order to get kids to "understand" it better, voice-overs were added in at the last minute. The movie also contained a lot of kiddie humor. Due to the backlash, they released the Cretaceous Cut without the voice-overs.
    • In the Walking with Dinosaurs Arena Spectacular, the narration (performed by a person on-stage dressed as a 19th-century paleontologist) is more child-oriented than in the television series. It's also somewhat less overtly violent than the original documentary, though that's partially due to the limitations of the animatronics.

  • Discussed in this podcast staring paleontologists. Dinosaurs are easy to market to kids, however adults aren't that interested in them. This is why there have been fewer dinosaur (or, even paleontology period) documentaries since the mid-2000s.

    Video Games 
  • In the Interactive Fiction game Ad Verbum, one of the puzzles requires the player to win a contest of dinosaur knowledge against a young boy; the boy knows so many dinosaur names that the player can only win by cheating and making up fake dinosaur names.
  • Dinosaur King is a video game series and shonen anime where dinosaurs are essentially Mons. In the anime, they're trading cards that the protagonists need to find.
  • Besides music, Richard in Growing Up shows enthusiasm in dinosaurs as a kid, and Dino World is his favorite movie series. His love for dinos doesn't fade away even in adulthood since he makes a soundtrack inspired by his favorite dino movie if you marry him.
  • Inazuma Eleven: Nishizono Shinsuke from the GO trilogy is a bit older than most examples, being a first-year in middle school, although he really doesn't look like one. The second game of the trilogy reveals he's a big fan of dinosaurs and he's excited to see them when Raimon travels to the Mezozoic Era.
  • In Love & Pies, Amelia's kid daughter Kate always wears a dinosaur costume and is sometimes seen playing with her toy T-rex at the café.
  • Max: An Autistic Journey: The game's protagonist, an autistic boy named Max, loves all sorts of animals and monsters, but seems to love dinosaurs the most. In addition to his multiple other dinosaur toys, his favorite toy and imaginary friend is a Not Zilla called the "King of Monsters."
  • In Mass Effect 2, Grunt, a genetically-engineered alien soldier who Really Was Born Yesterday and who has a personality likened to that of a pubescent to teenaged boy, discovers Earth's dinosaurs while clicking on random links on the extranet and becomes completely entranced. Naturally, T-rex becomes his favorite. He also discovers Earth novels in a similar fashion, and seems to especially like Hemingway.
  • In Putt-Putt Travels Through Time, the titular kid-aged convertible expresses his fascination with dinosaurs when he ends up in their era.
  • In Sticky Business, David is a prepubescent kid who loves dinosaur stickers, and his father Marc asks you to make some for him when he first discovers your online sticker shop.

    Visual Novels 
  • Misuzu Kamio from AIR is a teenager, but she's been fascinated with dinosaurs since she was a child; she used to think bird's eggs were dinosaur's eggs note  and that chicks would eventually grow into dinosaurs. Her love of dinosaurs and her Verbal Tic of saying the pseudo-dinosauric sound effect "gao" when she's troubled emphasize her childish personality.

  • In Gunnerkrigg Court, when Annie finds out that a certain character is a Time Abyss, she excitedly asks them what dinosaurs looked like.
  • The alt-text for xkcd #2273 gives a Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot take:
    "See also: Farm animals and dinosaurs. I am so confident that there exists children's media that involves dinosaurs driving trucks on a farm that I'm writing this without even Googling to check."
  • In Schlock Mercenary, Sorlie gets to meet actual dinosaurs, with the appropriate reaction.
  • A Patreon-only strip of Dumbing of Age revealed Dina's love of dinosaurs started at a young age, as about the time she started kindergarten, she also had her first trip to Dino Park...and right next to a picture commemorating it is her first itemized list of all the inaccuracies of Dino Park. Another strip showed Walky and Sal also had the dinosaur-loving phase, and Sal's able to bond with Dina because she had an answer for 'favorite dinosaur' that wasn't any of the usual suspects.
    Dina: Favorite dinosaur?
    Sal: Pachycephalosaurus.
    Dina: [in awe] You may come in.

    Web Videos 
  • Bowser Junior from SuperMarioLogan likes to play with dinosaurs. Sometimes when he plays dinosaurs with his friends, he will give them one tiny dinosaur to pit against his many bigger ones.

    Western Animation 
  • Arthur:
    • Buster really likes dinosaurs, as established in "Buster's Dino Dilemma".
    • Bud likes dinosaurs as well and has a toy T. rex named Rapty, who is also his imaginary friend.
  • DuckTales (2017):
    • Webby has "high-five a Brontosaurus" as one of her life goals.
    • In "Timephoon!", Dewey and Webby eagerly watch Bubba (himself a kid cave-duck) ride on a Triceratops, and eventually Huey admits it's awesome.
  • Harry and His Bucket Full of Dinosaurs is about Harry, a five year old who has six miniature dinosaurs as his friends packed into a bucket. There's also a second child, Charley, who also has her own selection of dinosaur friends.
  • The sixth episode of Johnny Bravo is "Johnny Meets Farrah Fawcett." Johnny succeeds in getting past Farrah's ruthless bodyguard by posing as Smarmy The Dinosaur. He's immediately mobbed by excited children, who use his supine form as a trampoline while Farrah blithely departs.
  • In The Loud House, there's a Barney parody called Blarney, who is loved by the younger girls such as Lily and the twins, and also Clyde (who's eleven, but too much of a wuss to watch the scary movies).
  • Molly of Denali: It is shown in "Going Toe to Toe with a Dinosaur" that Vera loves dinosaurs, and wants to be a paleontologist when she grows up.
  • In Muppet Babies (2018), Kermit's favorite toy is his Mega Super Ultra Robo Dinosaur action figure. In "A Very Muppet Babies Christmas", he hopes to get a pack of Mega Super Ultra Robo Dinosaur trading cards. In "When You Wish Upon a Rizzo", when Rizzo takes on the form of a genie and gives the babies each one wish, Kermit's wish is for his Mega Super Ultra Robo Dinosaur action figure to be life-sized.
  • In Peppa Pig, George, one of the youngest characters, is a big dinosaur fan and owns a toy dinosaur named Mr. Dinosaur.
  • Rosie's Rules: Iggy likes playing dinosaurs, and has a dinosaur scooter helmet.
  • In Rugrats, the babies love the cartoon dinosaur named Reptar. They watch him on TV, eat cereal and candy related to him, play with toys of him, etc.
  • The Simpsons: In "The Book Job", the Simpsons attend a live show called Sitting with Dinosaurs (a blatant parody of the Walking with Dinosaurs Arena Spectacular). The kids in the audience are excited to see the (fake) dinosaurs, but are frightened when they see that they're nothing like Barney.
    Milhouse: These aren't dinosaurs! Dinosaurs sing!
  • Timothy Goes to School: This gets inverted in "Scary Monsters" in which Nora is scared of dinosaurs since she thought all of them were huge.
  • At one point in Winston's Potty Chair, Winston has an Imagine Spot where he is in a prehistoric forest when he reads a book about dinosaurs. This ultimately leads to Winston having a potty accident, and when his dad sees him, he says, "Winston, that must be a good book! You forgot to go to the potty!"