James: While we won’t be forced to endure the smell of burning plastic or suffer the piercing devastation of stepping on LEGO at night, we will have the opportunity to experience a kind of LEGO 4D. Legoland brings us The Lego Movie 4D: A New Adventure.
Jeff: Everyone I follow on twitter has praised this film as something all LEGO fans should go see, but I take exception at calling it a 4D movie! To be a true 4D experience, we should be able to take in the entire 12 minute production all at once, instead of in our 3D mandated linear fashion. Aren’t there truth in advertising laws that can get this title changed to “The LEGO Movie in 3D with Some Awesome Physical Effects” or something like that? Is that too much to ask? I know when someone tells me I’m going to break-free from the confines of my physical reality, I expect more than a blast of mist and some confetti, but maybe I expect too much?
James: But it’s not all about the future – while these builds probably don’t capture the smell of urine and damp newspapers, you can certainly enjoy a miniaturized trip down memory lane with TTC streetcars done in LEGO style! We love riding the plastic rails, and these are really worth a look at. It’s always fun when LEGO flexes its versatility muscle and does such a great job mirroring reality. As long as they’ve arrested that one bottomless pantsless minifigure who, well, let’s assume they eventually will.
Jeff: Why would you want to capture the smell of urine and damp newspapers? Seriously, there is something wrong with you? While I applaud the level of realism these TTC streetcar builds bring, I worry about the details you would add if you ever got too close to them.
Jeff: In every video I’ve ever seen of Jorgen Vig Knudstorp, he is always wearing a great big smile. Is he a naturally happy person, or is being the CEO of a toy company that made $1.4 billion US in profits last year something that will plaster a wide grin on anyone’s face? Here’s smiling Jack talking about how LEGO has stuck around in the digital age:
(Jorgen Vig Knudstorp, the CEO of the Lego Group, discusses how Lego has managed to stay relevant in recent years)
James: No, summer 2016 won’t just be about lounging on a beach or sweating to death in a poorly ventilated office. LEGO announced a pile of summer sets at the recent New York Toy Fair to help get our imaginations fired up and our weary minds through the rainy days of spring. Jeff, please take me to your lighthouse in a twin spin helicopter. And after that can we go to the amusement park so I can eat a plastic hot dog and stare at the freakish Mixels on display in such a brazenly politically incorrect manner?
Jeff: Sorry James, I’m too busy helping Batman and Spider-Man fight off Killer Croc and the Doc Ock on the bridges of New York. I just hope Kraven doesn’t show up to hunt Killer Croc, as it’s really hard to battle someone whilst attempting to protect them at the same time, but hey, that’s the life of an ABS hero. What’s that, we’re going to talk about the Super Hero sets further down the list? Sure, I can try and wait…
Jeff: I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, there has been a sad lack of enchanted living furniture in LEGO form, and it’s about time someone did something about it!
James: And if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it forty seven times – flammable objects like candlestick holders make terrible friends. As do talking tea sets. If there’s a talking coffee machine, however, I’ll immediately reconsider.
James: This set is essentially the height of practicality. A helicopter that can lift a snow cat, but can also turn into a snowmobile or a single prop plane in a pinch. This is basically every Canadian’s dream.
Jeff: This is as close as we’re going to get to an official Breaking Bad LEGO set. Dimensions are right, colours are close, but lacking criminal overlords, and crystal meth.
James: And again we have that photographer dude. You’re right, Jeff, this is very Breaking Bad. Except that Breaking Bad did not have a yacht! The only thing that could have made that show better is a very 1980s “husband and wife on a meth yacht / family vacation” mid-season subplot. Also, hey, photographer dude, you are probably going to be dinner after that bear finishes with lunch. Unless the bear steals that skateboard first and it once again turns into a 1980s sitcom.
Jeff: This is not a set for environmentalists, as it appears they have hacked to top of a giant old-growth tree to stick a lame clubhouse on top. This is really more of a stump-house than a treehouse.
James: I also do not think it is a set for building inspectors or humans. Would I send my little brick kids up there? Not sure. It is a good place to do some amateur astronomy and micro-bird watching, however.
Jeff: OK, now we can talk about the summer Super Hero releases. I can’t wait to take-down Captain Boomerang with Katana!
James: Slow down Jeff, we’re not quite there yet.
Jeff: But… the swords… and boomerangs…
James: With a five year old daughter I know there will be many more Friends sets entering our house. And this is a theme I can get behind. With any luck, by playing with all of these in LEGO form I will not be forced to experience them in real life. I want Mia to get fleeced by the carney so I don’t have to. I want Olivia to spin endlessly in vomit inducing circles so I can be spared this indignity. I want poor little Nate to end up in the hospital from wearing his hot dog suit in 100 degree weather so I can avoid such a fate. I want my daughter to see that Stephanie is making inadequate income selling hot dogs, unless of course she chooses to become a sole proprietor of said business stand. The lesson here is self-employment. And letting Friends go to the amusement park so we don’t have to.
Jeff: As a bonus, you can buy all these sets for less than the cost of “winning” a giant stuffie at the amusement park midway!
Jeff: I feel like calling that a roller coaster is a bit of o stretch. I’ve had more thrilling commutes to work. Now the “Free-Fall” tower looks like it will kill you, and that’s what a thrill ride should look like!
Jeff: I’m nominating this set for “Best of 2016” already. So much patented LEGO personality in such a small box. The Hot Dog Van would be enough, but add in the Hot Dog costume and tourist photo wall, and now I MUST OWN THIS!
Jeff: Alright! Finally we can put on our spandex and talk super powers!
James: Oh no, don’t get ahead of yourself.
Jeff: But, I’m already wearing my spandex!
James: I am aware, in fact, I may never get this image out of my mind, but we need talk about the upcoming Mixels first.
James: Because I said so that’s why.
Mixels Series 8 (June 1, 2016 release)
James: Someone please help Mixel Splasho! Look at the desperation in its eyes! Wait, don’t look at it in the eyes! It’s just too devastatingly sad. He has a bucket he can’t seem to spew water into and a valve he can’t turn off. He’s so cute. He’s so rusted. He looks like he wants nothing more than a hug, some WD-40 and a wrench.
Jeff: Splasho is the star of the MCFD for sure, as he is just too adorable. Unfortunately the rest of the MCFD are a bit of a disappointment, in particular Aquad who looks like an incontinent flying creature with no depth perception. How is he supposed to fight fire?
James: What’s not to like about a pirate theme, especially one with a treasure chest that will probably bite your arm off. I’m thinking of utilizing this security measure on various parts of my house. Kids will certainly stay out of the snack cupboard after having to visit Mixel Surgeo after stealing treats from Mixel Lewt.
Jeff: I would definitely watch a musical starring the Pyrratz Mixels. They all look like they really enjoy a life of pillaging, and could burst into song at any moment. Brickfilmers, I’m counting on you to make this happen! Also, Skulzy could be my new best friend – sorry, James.
James: For these next three I don’t like to discriminate, but I highly recommend LEGO fans do not seek the assistance of Mixels as their health or dental care providers. I’m not entirely certain why, but I have a feeling that most insurance providers will frown on this.
James: I don’t want to assume I know what these will be all about without looking at them, but I do have the distinct impression I want these on my office desk. Maybe not Cobrax. I suspect I shouldn’t trust anyone with Cobrax in their name, even though I have the competing impulse to legally change my last name to Cobrax. Mysto Cobrax, pleased to meet you.
Jeff: Looking at the trashcan based Trashoz, you think the Mixel designers are running out of ideas, then you see the ninja based Nindjas and you realize, they will never run out of ideas for Mixels!
Jeff: POW! BOOM! SMACK! Feel my wrath tiny, plastic, villains!
James: Batman faces some frightening foes. For once, though I think he may have the upper hand. In the Harvest of Fear scenario he has a helicopter against some kind of nefarious combine harvester. He’s basically going to fly in circles blasting that piece of overpowered farm machinery all day.
Jeff: On our LEGO Batman episode we went over the long list of odd Bat-Vehicles included in sets, but this time I agree, it’s a good idea to bring a helicopter to a combine harvester fight!
James: And with Killer Croc… Look at Batman’s vehicle! Batman says, “I see your giant mouth thing, and I raise you one TERRIFYING BERSERKER CAR!” I don’t demand a fair fight, but come on. Perhaps this is all part of the dental theme that they seem to be working on with the upcoming sets.
Jeff: To me, this really shows what a jerk Batman is. He goes, “We’re up against a giant deadly mouth thing that can cut through solid steel, I’ll take the Bat-Tank, Red Hood, you grab your motorbike, and you there with the swords, you’re on foot. OK, attack!” No wonder Red Hood has already died once.
James: In the end, though, I think we can all agree that the real star of these sets is the farmer. He is going to have some wildly unbelievable stories to tell his grandchildren: “And Killer Moth kept trying to blast my vehicle! What? No, not the politically conscious rapper Killer Mike. This flying creature that physically resembled an alien moth. And did I mention the SCARECROW WAS ALIVE?! I did? Sorry, OK. Yes, I’ll take my meds now.”
Jeff: I imagine a support group will form with him and the banana delivery guy from the Gorilla Grood set being the first members. They can call the group, Villians Inciting or Creating Terrible Incendiary Meyhem Survivors. Hopefully LEGO will give us new V.I.C.T.I.M.S. each year.
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes Sets (Summer 2016 release)
James: Ghost Rider! And fire! How can I not get behind this? Ghosts AND fire in one set! My favourite part of this set, however, is the streetlight and newspaper boxes. I’m all about infrastructure. Come on Spider-Man, let’s preserve some municipal tax dollars!
Jeff: I love these little street corner builds, hopefully they’ll continue to give us New York street signs over the years to the point we can build a LEGO scale map of a four block section. I would buy sets for that reason alone.
James: Poor Spidey. After he’s done saving lamp posts he’s given nothing more than a boogie board and a slightly different pose to chase after Doc Ock’s mech mayhem. I have to be cheering for the Tentacle Trap on this one.
Jeff: Batman get’s all the cool vehicles, Web-Head has to make due with what he has. Why he chose to wakeboard behind the boat, rather than be on it, I don’t know? Alos, I’m happy we can now complete our Ultimate Spider-man starting hero roster, but it’s odd they through White Tiger in a non-Ultimate Spider-man set.
James: But Peter Parker’s day’s not done! He’s sent out to make a giant mess of more public infrastructure! “Um, Spider-Man, we’re happy about the work you’ve been doing this week and all but we’re going to have to bill you 1.3 million for general web cleanup and bridge reconstruction. And that cab driver will probably be in therapy for his PTSD for decades.”
Jeff: Sadly, the cab is empty, otherwise we’d have more V.I.C.T.I.M.S.. I’d include Aunt May, but she’s more of a professional victim. As for the damage, make no mistake, J.J. Jamison is going to hold Spidey personally responsible for this and the bad press is going to be what causes a Civil War (™) in the super hero community.
LEGO New Releases
James: But this week it’s not just about throwing our LEGO hopes and dreams several months into the future. We all know summer is so far away. And everyone knows a watched season never boils. So let’s focus on the now.
Jeff: Canadian designer Jason Allemann submitted this to LEGO Ideas in April of 2012, it didn’t hit 10,000 votes until Septembre of 2014. Now we are headed towards April 2016, and we can take it home and play with it. Comes with two maze designs and infinite possibilities…
James: I like that you can swap out the maze plates once you’ve tired of the two maze designs included. The mechanism becomes a platform for family challenges or just a delightful way to drive your co-workers bonkers with endless rattling and yells of defeat.
Jeff: You know I’m going to design my own Joker Vs. Batman maze to impress my kids and keep me entertained.
Jeff: Do I need another LEGO Batman? Is this Batman also a pirate? Then yes, I most certainly do. The only downside of these books is it really hits me hard in my completionists brain. Any figure I don’t already own becomes an obsession.
Impractical LEGO: (home for the weird and wacky LEGO news)
Jeff: Will my wife allow me to buy the 435 trillion LEGO bricks I need to build a life-size Death Star?
James: But once it is built I presume you’ll be able to hide out inside until lift off. After that your orbit around the sun should keep you out of reach.
Jeff: I would have to build it in zero gravity, as the LEGO brick can only take 950 lbs of pressure. Launching a sphere into orbit would be impractical. You have to be realistic about these things James.