Follow TV Tropes


Western Animation / Dinotrux

Go To

Dinotrux is a DreamWorks Animation TV show developed for Netflix based off a series of children's books of the same name by Chris Gall, making it their first property to premiere in this format.

A prehistoric world, set in the Mechazoic era, is populated by hybrid dinosaur-construction vehicles called Dinotrux, and by hybrid reptile-tools called Reptools. Two best friends, Ty, a Tyrannosaurus Trux, and Revvit, a Reptool, must team up with other inhabitants of the world to defend their fledgling community and their work from an evil Tyrannosaurus Trux, named D-Structs, who would stop at nothing to get rid of the other Dinotrux so he can have everything to himself.

On November 10, 2017 the show was retooled into Dinotrux: Supercharged, featuring the gang armed with Spark Bug Superchargers to power themselves up.


This show provides examples of:

  • Acrophobic Bird: Skya, a Brachiosaurus analogue and by far the tallest character, is afraid of heights. She explains that she can handle her own height thanks to typically being firmly on the ground, but has trouble once she gets higher and can fall.
  • Adaptation Inspiration: The series is more inspired by the concept of dinosaurs and vehicles mashed together; The Dinotrux in the books are far more organic in appearance where the series uses more mechanical designs.
  • Animal-Vehicle Hybrid: Each of the Dinotrux is a hybrid of a kind of dinosaur (or other prehistoric creature) and a kind of construction vehicle.
  • Bigger on the Inside: When Garby eats Revvit, his stomachs are huge.
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: As it turns out, Skrap-It is extremely fond of Ty's "Let's Trux it up!"
    Skrap-It: So, we're going to smash their little build, eh?
    D-Structs: No, I have something else in mind. A more permanent solution.
    Skrap-It: Great. Let's Trux it up!
    D-Structs: ...Don't ever say that to me again.
  • Advertisement:
  • Blood Knight: Poundersaurolophus are seemingly a whole species of this, pounding everything in sight for no real reason and driving other Trux out of their territory. In a flashback, one Pounder was very clearly going to kill a young Skya, who was only saved at the last second by another Craneosaur.
  • Big "NO!": Ton-Ton gives one when Pounder destroys the Trux Wash
  • Butt-Monkey: Dozer suffers this treatment in just about every episode. He complains about it frequently in Supercharged, but even when it's not mentioned, watch some of the action in the background of fights/running-away sequences. He consistently gets smacked with more boulders than anyone else.
  • By the Lights of Their Eyes: A Justified Trope as the eyes of all characters are also their headlights. They can even even turn their high beams on in order to see better in the dark.
  • Carnivore Confusion:
    • The show is a weird example. Technically, all Dinotrux eat ore that they dig out of the ground. T-Trux, despite everything running from them immediately, are normally just jerks who steal from others in their territory. Scraptors, Scrapadactyls, and Scraptools are more vilified, being rusting looking and mostly not speaking, but they don't actually appear to eat Dinotrux, they just take them appart because they want to collect scrap.
    • There's another layer in the Bitbugs, which are just winged spare parts that the reptools catch and immediately regurgitate to generate basic parts.
  • Catchphrase: "Let's trux it up" said right before the group builds whatever is going to fix the issue of the day. It's usually Ty's thing, to the point where the others occasionally aren't sure who should say it if Ty happens to not be around.
  • Chekhov's Boomerang:
    • In "Tortools", Ty has the tortools paint him camouflage in order to sneak past Scrapadactyls unseen to rescue the mother tortool. In "Lair", Ty realizes the same plan can work just as well to sneak past D-Structs to rescue Revvit.
    • In "Rollodons", the Dinotrux use the Rollodons to roll over and seal up a tar leak, creating a small stretch of paved road in the process. In "Racetrack", the trux realize that the rowdy Dumps really like the smooth surface for driving on, and decide to repeat the process to build them an entire race track to play on.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Early on in "Sandstorm", Ty accidentally uncovers a geyser that the gang plugs up and pays no mind until later when they become locked up from being caught in a sandstorm and need to clean themselves out faster than Revvit and Click-Clack are capable of, leading to the geyser becoming the central part of a Trux Wash. Even the boulder used to plug the geyser becomes important as the geyser threatens to blow the top off the building until the boulder is placed on top to weigh it down.
  • Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: if the new dinosaur attacking the heroes is a bright color, it's just a misunderstanding and they'll be friends by the end of the episode. If they're in metallic grays and gray-blues, they're just jerks.
    • Inverted with the Pteracopters: they have a metallic gray/black color palette and are modeled after military aircraft, but they are friendly and in fact never even tried attacking Ty and his friends in the first place.
  • Compressed Vice:
    • Skya shows a somewhat ironic fear of heights in "Desert" that threatens the gang's plan to find a way out of the desert by building a tower for her to look from. This did not come up in "Scrapadactyls" which featured a similar "build a staircase for Skya to climb up to reach a tall height" plan. And then it's even more noticeable in "Shockarachnids" when she has no problem going on a high and swinging platform. It finally gets a Lampshade Hanging in Season 5 when she falls off a cliff she was trying to climb: "So glad I got over my fear of heights so I could do stuff like that."
    • And it happens to her again with her insistence on not needing help in "Drillosaurs." Funnily enough, it's actually pretty similar to a lesson Ashleigh Ball had already learned as Applejack.
  • Continuity Cavalcade: "Slide" features just about every ally the team made in the first two seasons all working together.
  • Continuity Creep: Season 4 features a much tighter story arc than the show ever attempted before, despite being half the length of a typical season.
  • Construction Is Awesome: The point of the show. The Dinotrux don't really build anything until Ty convinces them to work together. The fact that they can make structures is what sets them apart from D-Structs and the others.
  • Conveyor Belt o' Doom: Garby's stomach is a conveyer belt of whirling blades and crushers that are meant to grind the rocks he eats up. Revvit finds himself inside and manages to survive the gauntlet only to be deposited into another identical conveyer belt.
    Revvit: He eats so much of course he has two stomachs! *screams*
  • Cowardly Sidekick: Revvit and Click-Clack to the Dinotrux and Skrap-It to D-Structs. Revvit isn't that cowardly, he's just a very cautious. He's treated as very brave for a reptool, since most of the rest of them are too afraid to leave their ravine.
  • Cute Machines: The Reptools and the baby Tortools. Younger Dinotrux also qualify.
  • Dark Reprise: Whenever D-Structs tries his hands at building, a darker version of the usual building theme plays.
  • Distracted by the Shiny: Reptools and Scraptools alike seem to be extremely fond of spare parts. The pile of scrap that makes Scraptor Valley is exciting enough for Revvit that he forgets the task at hand and later describes it as an amazing treasure trove despite the deadly predators that live there, and a swarm of extremely rare bit bugs is exciting enough for Click-Clack that he briefly forgets to be afraid.
  • Doomed Hometown: The events of the series are set into place when Ty's home crater is destroyed in a volcano eruption.
  • The Engineer: All of the Reptools, but Revvit in particular also comes up with most of the construction blueprints the team uses.
  • Evil Counterpart: D-Structs to Ty and Skrap-It to Revvit.
    • On a species-wide scale, the Scrapadactils could be considered one to the Pteracopters.
  • Expy: D-Structs' personality and characterization appears to be based on that of Beast Era Megatron.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Nearly every episode is named over what the focus of the episode is going to be. From the type of build, to the type of new Dino Trux, to the setting, you can be sure you'll know what it is by the title.
  • Fantastic Racism: Every species initially only wants to be with their own kind, and are suspicious of any others. The central development is our heroes learning how much better things can be when they work together.
  • Gasshole: Garby the Stegarbasaur, part stegosaurus and part garbage truck, who eats rocks and expels a lot of gas and bricks as a result.
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors: Most Dinotrux species all share the same colour, but the two T-Truxes Ty Rux and D-Structs are bright red and pitch black, respectively. Meanwhile, all scrap collecting species appear to not be painted at all, and are all shades of grey and rust.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The Reptool Ravine, a hidden village where the reptools live safe from the dangers of outside world and mostly content to keep it that way.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: D-Structs tries to trap the others in a pit, but since he traps them all together, they are able to build a way out and trick him into falling in instead.
  • Home Base: So that the reptools have a safe place to work on the dinotrux, they build a garage to serve as their collective home base, with custom bays for each dinotrux.
  • Horns of Villainy: D-Structs' brother D-Stroy has them (very likely inspired by Carnotaurus)
  • Imprinting: Dozer accidentally finds a tortool nest and the newly hatched tortools imprint on him. Even after they return to their real mother, they remain very fond of Dozer and are allowed to visit from time to time.
  • Knight of Cerebus: When D-Structs is around, things are usually serious.
  • Legion of Doom: By the end of the third season, D-Structs has recruited Blayde, Splitter and Pounder to work with him to fight the others. Combined with Skrap-It, Break-Itt, Smash-Itt and Lloyd, D-Structs team matches Ty's core team in number.
  • Lightning Can Do Anything: In "Lightning", a lightning strike causes Skrap-It to become extremely intelligent, capable of outsmarting even Revvit. Another lightning strike changes him back to normal.
  • A Lizard Named "Liz": A large number of Dinotrux names are derived from the name of their species, which is lampshaded when a pair of Dozeratops named Zera and Tops introduce themselves.
    Tops: No clue where it comes from.
    Revvit: Is it not short for Dozeratops?
    Tops: (Stunned gasp) Oh...
  • Logo Joke: Revvit carves the DreamWorks Animation logo into a rock, with Ty and him fishing in the place of the boy.
  • Machine Blood: The only two instances of a Dinotrux suffering an injury that causes them to "bleed" are "Sawmetradon" where the titular Splitter cuts open one of Ty's oil lines with his saws and "Downshift", where Dozer blows a gasket fighting D-Structs and leaks coolant. The former is treated more like blood as Revvit immediately calls for a retreat to repair the wound stressing that Ty could suffer engine failure if allowed to bleed out.
  • Made of Iron: Literally, though they are in need of regular repair.
  • Mecha Expansion Pack: Throughout Supercharged the tools start capitalizing on the extra power provided by the superchargers to build specialized add-ons for the trux:
    • "Doom Run" outfits Ton-Ton with rocket boosters that consume explosive ore to make him go even faster.
    • "Goldtrux" outfits Ty with all purpose battle armor featuring many gadgets such as a bolo launcher, a smoke screen, and an oil slick.
    • "Cliffhanger" outfits Skya with claws, a pickaxe tongue and a back mounted grappling hook that can allow her to Building Swing to climb a cliff wall.
    • "Magnodozer" outfits Dozer with a larger fin reinforced with spikes so that he can destroy rocks instead of just push rocks and a harpoon gun on his tail to pull tall rocks down.
    • "Crabcavator" outfits Ty to function underwater, with an air tank, propellers, a fin on his tail and a harpoon gun on his tread.
  • Mechanical Lifeforms: A rather interesting example. While both Dinotrux and Reptools are purely mechanical, they still need food (ore, or rocks in Garby's case) and water to sustain themselves, are able to breathe (which includes the ability to smell things), can feel pain or other tactile sensations through their metal bodies, will grow tired from physical effort and are hatched from eggs instead of being built (and yes, they do grow from childhood to adulthood instead of being Born as an Adult). Also, despite being truck-like robot dinosaurs that are explicitly stated to have engines, they they never seem to refuel nor to actually need fuel in order to function. For all intents and purposes, they are living beings that happen to be machines rather than robots modeled after living beings.
  • The Medic: The Reptools again, since all lifeforms in this world are machines.
  • Merchandise-Driven: Dinosaurs mashed with construction equipment, pre-orders for the toyline opened the same day as the show premiered.
  • Mighty Roar: Fitting their hybrid dinosaur/vehicle nature, a T-Trux roar sounds like a roar mixed with a truck horn while a Dozeratops, kinda sounds a bit gassy.
  • Never Say "Die": The closest they get to discussing such things is pointing out when particularly serious afflictions could lead to engine failure if not treated. Justified, though, since the characters are machines.
  • Nobody Poops: Averted once Garby joins. Since he's a trash compacter who poops cubes of rock, we get to see it happen often. They even build their food storage silo out of it.
  • Power Glows: A Sparkbug Supercharger glows with a light so bright, when it is installed inot a Dinotrux it is visible from the outside of their body. Taken up to eleven in Supercharged, where the light of the Supercharger comes in the form of Tron Lines.
  • Ptero Soarer: The Scrapadactyls. They're even treated as actually threatening to the Dinotrux. On the other hand, the Pteracopters are friendly towards the other Dinotrux.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Dinotrux are naturally wary of other species and working together to build things is unheard of, so the main characters are all the only members of their species eccentric enough to consider such a thing.
    Ty: Excuse me...
    (All but one of the Ankylodumps run away in terror)
    Ty: Okay, let's talk to the crazy one.
    Revvit: Yes, at least you'll have some common ground.
  • Raptor Attack: Thus far, Scraptors are the only things shown that actively try to prey on Dinotrux, other scrap loving species mostly scavenge. They're rusty, unable to talk, and are treated as more Always Chaotic Evil than even D-Structs.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: The Reptools, who look like adorable little robotic lizards.
  • Schizo Tech: They are advanced mechanical prehistoric robots that build primitive constructions out of rocks and trees. Fittingly, the sophistication of their "builds" advances rapidly as the show goes on and the Trux make new friends that offer new techniques and materials.
  • Screw This, I'm Out of Here!: Small numbers of Scraptors can usually be gotten rid of with a Mighty Roar from Ty, though depending on if these are the first or last Scraptors of a group, they are either running away or just going to get more Scraptors.
  • Seldom-Seen Species: The Dreadtrux are based on Dreadnoughtus, while the Eodozeratops seem to be part-Eotriceratops.
  • Shoot the Medic First: D-Structs eventually realizes that the best way to get rid of the Dinotrux is to get rid of the Reptools that repair them first.
  • Sixth Ranger: The main group of four Dinotrux forms in the first episode, then Garby is added in the 6th.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Skya's the only female Dinotrux in the group. The Reptools also have a token female in Ace.
  • Spikes of Villainy: In case everything else about D-Structs wasn't obviously evil, his wrecking ball/tail is spiked.
  • Spike Shooter: Stegarbasaurs like Garby can shoot their back plates at enemies.
  • Spock Speak: Revvit rarely uses contractions and is typically the one talking about technological stuff.
  • Stealth Pun: The T-Trux, part Tyrannosaurus Rex, part excavator/wrecking ball. Because "T-Wrecks" might have been a little too on the nose.
  • Stock Dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus: T-Trux, Brachiosaurus: Cranosaurs, Ankylosaurus: Ankylodumps, Triceratops: Dozeratops, Stegosaurus: Stegarbasaurs, raptors: Scraptors, Pteranodon: Scrapadactyls, Parasaurolophus: Poundersaurolophus, Dilophosaurus: Gluphosaurs, Pachycephalosaurus: Cementasaurus, Dimetrodon: Sawmetrodon, and Quetzalcoatlus: Pteracopters.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: Ton-ton, Skya and Skrap-it all describe a meteor by describing the sounds it makes when falling and landing. D-Structs even knows what Skrap-it is talking about immediately.
  • Swallowed Whole: Happens to Revvit and the other Reptools in episode 6 courtesy of Garby.
  • Take It to the Bridge: The Bridge built in the Season 4 finale "Bridge" manages to host three important battles within 4 episodes, including the one where it's built!
  • Tempting Fate: If Scraptors or Scrapadactyls aren't already involved, asking how things could get any worse will immediately summon one of those two.
  • Theme Music Power-Up: Whenever the theme song instrumental plays, you just know there's some awesome building afoot!
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Season 2, D-Structs replaces his lost wrecking ball tail with a saw blade, and catches on to the benefits of constructing.
  • Totally Radical: Ton-Ton talks like a stereotypical '90s teen.
  • Turtle Power: The Tortools. They seem to be even more versatile than Reptools and are the only things that can repaint things.
  • Unwanted Rescue: When D-Structs gets stranded on a cliff and made easy prey for Scraptors and Scrapadactyls, the Dinotrux decide they should help him, which D-Structs objects to, and he starts throwing boulders to try and stop them.
  • Verbal Tic: Skrap-It has to pause to fix his mouth every few words, sounding like a mechanical Donald Duck.
  • We Work Well Together: What the 4 main Dinotrux figure out at the end of the first episode.
  • You All Look Familiar: Nearly every species of trux has a default appearance from which all members are just recolors of.
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry!: Has happened to Ty in a couple of situations. One being he's knocked off a racing track by a Dump. Ty picks himself up and growls in a quiet rage. His friends notice immediately, with Revvit telling the Dumps that "[He] would not want to be [them] right now." Immediately after, normally friendly Ty yells at the Dumps and threateningly roars at them.
    • Another example would show up in Season 4. The normally calm and serene George, gets angry when Garby is attacked by Blayde and attacks her nonstop to the point where she is unable to retaliate.
  • Zerg Rush: How Scraptors and Scrapadactyls work.