Thursday, September 29, 2011

1375 - the set that wasn't

Okay, here's a different type of set review. Back when the first official Spider-Man sets were announced, there was supposed to be a third set, 1375 - Wrestling Scene. It showed up on early lists of upcoming sets, and photos were leaked that seemed to be authentic. Unfortunately, this set was later canceled.

The potential set would have focused on the scene where Peter Parker challenges a professional wrestler with his newly acquired powers. Of course this is a key scene in Spidey's history, because Peter's failure to stop a robbery of the wrestler's manager later led to the death of Uncle Ben, and Peter's vow to use his power to fight crime. The set itself was cute. In my opinion they could have removed the cameraman - remember the first Spidey sets were a sub-theme of Studios, so they were all supposed to be on movie sets. Anyway, we got that Spidey fig the next year in 4850, Spider-Man's First Chase, but we never did get the Macho-Man (er, Bonesaw McGraw) fig.



Interestingly the set was supposed to include a backdrop depicting the crowd at the wrestling match. This is the same backdrop card that was released in the Action-Pack expansion, as noted in my previous set review. So this set could be recreated easily from released elements, except for the Macho-Man torso (or maybe is that torso in some other LEGO set?).

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

August winners!

The first winners have been posted in the official LEGO Super Heroes monthly contest . I'll note them all in the next few days, but the two first place winners are Thomas Hubbel's LEGO Batman: A Dark Knight and Tony Norton's A new take on the Batman's Beginnings, LEGO Style (his rendition of Detective Comics #27). Congratulations to these and all of the winners! BTW, no word yet on whether they will receive the new sets immediately, or later in January when they are available to the public. As soon as I know, you'll know.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hero complex

Nathan Sawaya made these wonderful sculptures that were on display at the LA Times Hero Complex Film Festival earlier this year.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Set 10075 - Spider-Man Action Pack

It's been forever since I've done a set review. I want to try and get through all of the old products from the previous official Spider-Man and Batman themes before the new LEGO Super Heroes sets come out in January, so I'll make a concerted effort to get these posted. Okay, I've already mentioned the first two Spidey sets, 1376 - Spider-Man Action Studio and 1374 - Green Goblin. Soon after these came out, LEGO advertised that you could buy the sets in a bundle through Shop At Home and would get an addition: 10075 - Spider-Man Action Pack.



The addition was simply another 25 pieces, a cardboard backdrop, and instructions to expand the building from set 1376 and add a balcony. This allowed you to recreate the Green Goblin's first public appearance from the 2002 Spider-Man movie. Mean Greenie flies in to this public festival on his glider, kills off several of Oscorp's board, and in the process destroys a balcony and almost kills Mary Jane. Spidey of course saves the day.

When this first came out it was a nice little addition. If you hadn't previously bought sets 1374 and 1376, you could get them together and get a few extra bricks in the process (I think in the original offer at no extra cost versus buying the sets individually). I'd already bout 1376, so it wasn't worth it to me. Later they offered the little expansion by itself for $7, which was really not worth it for a handful of bricks. You could easily modify set 1376 with your existing collection to make something comparable.

You can find the instructions on LEGO.com, the inventory on Peeron, or purchase it on Bricklink.

Quick question for you ComicBrick readers out there. I never bought this expansion, so I never actually held the cardboard backdrop in my hands. On both Peeron and Bricklink they show what I assume is the other side of the backdrop:

Could someone who owns this set confirm if this is really the other side? I'd actually not noticed that before, and, if so, that's related to our next set review ... (stay tuned Spidey-fans, same bat-time, same bat-channel, er, whatever).

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Please make scenes!

Let me start out by saying that Kaminoan's recent Wonder Woman is an incredible custom. So I'm not trying to take away from that in any way, but rather to build upon it. There are many amazing customizers out there, and Kaminoan is surely in the top tier (many others, I'm not going to get started lest I give insult by leaving out someone), who make these great customs, and stop there. Don't get me wrong, I'd like to emphasize again how much I love this custom. I also like how this (and other recent Kaminoan offerings) have a dynamic presentation, adding in the backdrop etc. That said, I do wish that these amazing customizers would go the next step and put their figs into action, such as these scenes and covers. That would just take something amazingly cool and make it even cooler. Okay, off my soapbox, back to admiring the great custom work here:

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Tomar-Re

Jared Burks made this wonderful rendition of Hal's buddy in the Corps, Tomar-Re

Rampant speculation

Okay, this is based on nothing at all but my own musings, but here are my thoughts on the partial set list I noted yesterday.

* LEGO 4526 Batman $14.99
* LEGO 4527 Joker $14.99
* LEGO 4528 Green Lantern $14.99
These are surely the large constructed figs we saw in the ComicCon display:

The price points of the Hero Factory line (very comparable to these) are 7.99, 12.99 and 29.99. Those large comic characters are somewhat comparable to the 12.99 Hero Factory sets, and if you throw in a couple of dollar mark-up due to licensing, it comes out about right.

* LEGO 6858 DC 1 $11.99
* LEGO 6860 DC 2 $69.99
* LEGO 6862 DC 3 $19.99
* LEGO 6863 DC 4 $29.99
* LEGO 6864 DC 5 $49.99
These are surely the minifig sets. I do note that there is no set under $10, probably due to the licensing markup. Of course, it's not such a huge loss since these sets aren't army builders - who needs a squadron of Supermans? Maybe one extra to make custom Bizarro, but one of each fig is enough for me. We know from the press release earlier this summer that the January release will include "13 characters, including Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and villains the Joker, Bane, Harley Quinn and Lex Luthor." There are 6 unnamed characters there, but we've already seen from ComicCon versions of the Green Lantern, Catwoman, and Poison Ivy. 13 characters spread over five sets is pretty impressive. I'm guessing that the big $69.99 set will be centered around the Justice League, and include Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and the Green Lantern battling some supervillain. We do know that one set is the Batcave (as it is one of the announced prizes in the official contest), so perhaps that is the $49.99 set. I'm guessing that at least two of the other sets will be Batman themed. My reasoning is that LEGO really likes to focus on vehicles. For instance, if you look at the Star Wars theme, there are many great settings in the movies, but the bulk of the sets are ships. If you look at the official Batman line from a few years ago there are ten fig-scale vehicle sets, two settings (the Batcave and Arkham), and one large UCS vehicle. The other major heroes mentioned in the DC universe just don't have as much potential for set variety. Besides, as Jack Nicholson's Joker said of Batman: "Where does he get those wonderful toys?" So we can also guess that the missing three figs from the promised thirteen characters are probably Batman-centric - Robin, the Riddler, maybe Two-Face. If this is true, it's a slight disappointment for me, since we've already seen a whole line of Batman, and there's a promised next wave of Batman coming out next summer connected with the Dark Knight Rises release. I would rather they spread the love a little, but, again looking back at the Star Wars license, how many iterations of the X-Wing have we had over the years? Complete speculation here, but I'd love to see the cheap set be Superman vs Lex Luthor. Supes is THE iconic superhero, and every kid needs a version of him, even if they can't get the high-end set that will surely have him.

One other thought - you'd think that with a blog like this, I probably read lots of comics. But I really don't any more. My comic love is more driven by the years I spent flipping pages as a kid, rushing home from school to catch the reruns of Adam West that came on at 3:30 (school got out at 3:00), getting up on Saturday morning to watch the Superfriends. I had a couple of friends in college who were comic book readers and regularly bought new copies, and so I would sit in their dorm rooms and read through them, but other than that I just flip through them at Borders (er, scratch that, Barnes and Noble now) on occasion. I tend to catch the big summer movie blockbusters, or at least when they get to HBO and Netflix. That's all the preliminary to say that I'm fairly ignorant of what's going on now in print. So, for instance, when I see MOCs based on the expansion of the Green Lantern series to all these different colors, I end up running around the internet reading up on it. That said, I was just reading how DC is rebooting everything, and starting all of their titles over at issue 1. I have no idea what that's going to mean for these heroes, but it seem that if LEGO is working with DC on this, the sets may well reference the new details of the DC universe rather than those we grew up with. It will be interesting to see if and how that manifests itself in these sets.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I'm seeing double

A couple of months ago there was a story that Captain Stubing (Gavin MacLeod) came to BrickFair to see the giant LEGO Love Boat. Well, look who came to a recent event in Austin and was seen with Evan Bacon's great sculpture. Holy identical twins, Batman!

January 2012

Toys N Bricks and other LEGO sites have pointed out that Barnes and Noble have already listed their January 2012 LEGO offerings. None of these have pictures or details yet, but let the rampant speculation begin:
Superheroes theme:
* LEGO 4526 Batman $14.99
* LEGO 4527 Joker $14.99
* LEGO 4528 Green Lantern $14.99
* LEGO 6858 DC 1 $11.99
* LEGO 6860 DC 2 $69.99
* LEGO 6862 DC 3 $19.99
* LEGO 6863 DC 4 $29.99
* LEGO 6864 DC 5 $49.99
Of course, one interpretation of the LEGO Super Heroes Challenge rules is that the winners of this monthly contest will get a complete line of the DC sets in advance of January. I corresponded with a LEGO rep involved in that challenge and she said that "shortly" the winners for August would be posted on their site. That was two weeks ago and I've been checking back daily. Given that most of the best MOCs I've seen in the galleries are by AFOLs connected to the community, I'm sure that as soon as whoever wins knows more, the rest of us will know soon thereafter.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Wayne Manor

Not part of the contest mentioned previously, but Dave Kaleta made his own amazing Wayne Manor and Batcave.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Figs

Vanjay made a number of great heroes. I love how he did completely purist versions, yet they're still completely recognizable.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Catwoman

Andertoons uses a completely novel mosaic technique to give us Catwoman as drawn by Darwyn Cooke. Via the Brothers-Brick.

Monday, September 12, 2011

One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small

Fine Clonier made versions of Hank Pym at his normal scale, as Giant-Man, and as Ant-Man. Those aren't photoshop tricks, he used one of those minifig flashlights to make the Giant version and one of the tiny trophy elements to make the Ant version.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Hero

Let's look up from comic books to remember the true heroes - those first responders who risk their lives to protect the innocent, so many of whom were lost ten years ago today in the World Trade Center.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Your friendly neighborhood trans bricks

I know it's a WIP, but this is too good to pass up. Chis Doyle went to Canada with a bunch of trans-red, trans-blue, trans-clear and black bricks (and when packing for your vacation, isn't that what you'd bring?), and he came back with this mosaic

Edit - he's posted the final version:

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Same BrickCon place, same BrickCon channel

If you're going to BrickCon, there's going to be a collaborative display devoted to the upcoming Super Heroes theme. Participants will bring buildings to connect together to make a city street, with heroes and villains battling it out. Prizes will be awarded for:
Most Heroic - Best Hero MOC (duh)
Most Villainous - Best Villain MOC (again, duh)
The Sidekick (category to be defined at the Convention)
The Kirby - Art award/Most artistic. Named after the late, great Jack Kirby!
Trophy-mobile - Best Vehicle.