15 comments on “Green flags in Tehran

  1. Memsochet

    Very nice. I love the way he used the sand-green hands to represent the protesters wearing the green armbands(at least that’s what I’m assuming he’s doing).

  2. Doctor Sinister

    Very topical, although I am led to believe there may not be much difference between the candidates.

    It’s the Supreme Leader (love that title!) who wields the true power.

    Perhaps this dispute will lead to a complete change in the system?

    Dr. S.

  3. David4

    Nothing will change from this.

    However I give them more credit than US Americans. In 2000 and 2004 there should have been recounts that never happened, and Americans sat on their butts and did nothing.

    Tomorrow is the big day. If there is a protest and the order is given to open fire and no one does, then it could be like the Berlin Wall and East Germany.

  4. l0b0t

    David4 Says: “In 2000 and 2004 there should have been recounts that never happened, and Americans sat on their butts and did nothing.”

    Uhh, Americans actually got off their duffs and took to the streets; there was a recount in Floria for the 2000 election and Bush won (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida_election_recount). Then in 2004 there was a recount in Ohio (brought by the Green an Libertarian Party’s candidates but Kerry opted not to challenge the results of the national election as Bush carried 31 states while Kerry only won 19 the District of Columbia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_election,_2004).

  5. driverdriver

    Ugh. This is precisely why I hate minfigs posed in this sort of manner. There’s always some idiots who like to argue about something irrelevant. It’s also something better left out of hobbies. Seriously, did you ever ask yourself if creating these scenes from a hobby was necessary? If I was Iranian, Iraqi or what have you- I’d be pissed off that my struggle was used for something to produce hits on a site such as this one. I’d also be deeply offended that a toy (and no doubt one of Lego’s worst creations) was used to convey reality. Also, there’s only like .1% creativity involved in these scenes. Let it go for the love of god, please stop posting these.

  6. Josh

    @driverdriver – I agree with your first point but heartily disagree with your second. I agree that there will always be people who descend into agruments at the drop of a hat, with no regard for relevency.

    However, that shouldn’t stop us from posting these kind of images. I think they do have a place here and in the hobby. This hobby is all about building things that affect us. Why shouldn’t Moritz post this? It is a very important event in world history that is taking place as we speak. Moritz obviously felt impacted by it and chose to express that with his bricks. I think it takes a lot of creativity to build scenes like this. The ability to convey the feel of an event or scene with a handful of bricks is something that is not easy at all.

    You ask if making scenes like this is necessary. Of course not. Nothing that we post on here is necessary. Its a hobby. However, I don’t think that building scenes of important life-changing events cheapens them in any way. If that were the case, I would never build anything. If the Iranian election protests are cheapened by this, then any real thing or event is also cheapened, if it’s portrayed in LEGO. History is full of events where people put their lives on the line for what they believed in. I do not think that a tribute in LEGO cheapens that.

    We post things that impact us in some way. This wasn’t posted to generate hits. It was posted it because it was good. Thanel felt that this was a particularly poignant scene and I agree with him.

  7. Thanel Post author

    @driverdriver: My wife was hogging the computer the last 24 hours, so I didn’t have the chance to see your comment or respond until now. I think Josh pretty much covers it, but because me writing “ditto” is a little flippant considering the subject, I’ll give my own 2 cents.

    Before I get into a point-by-point, a seriously nerdy question. What exactly are you referring to as “no doubt one of Lego’s worst creations?” Probably something we could have a healthy debate about as well.

    1. People do have a tendency to go off-topic and argue about silly things, but it’s also in the very nature of conversation (which is what a comments board is) for the topic to shift as people make statements, respond etc. There’s a limit to what’s reasonable or sensible, but of course people are going to raise subjects that they think are analogous, but may not be to other people.
    2. Considering it’s very different from Moritz’ usual subject-matter, I get the sense it was done out of real feeling on his part, NOT some sort of hit-whoring. Same with me, If I wanted a zillion extra hits here on TBB there are any number of more popular subjects (Star Wars, new sets) than protests in Iran.
    3. This is an adult hobby in an adult world with adult issues. Moritz’ vignette took thought, skill and effort. I seriously doubt a serious treatment of a serious issues is going to be seen as disrespect in the Persian/Iranian (definitely not Iraqi) community, though people may disagree . I don’t think I could put it any better than Josh did about the broad strokes that you drew as far as what is inappropriate subject matter for LEGO.
    4. Necessary? Of course not. Neither is the great vignette about the fear of frogs next to it, but I don’t see any criticism of that, even though this is far more important. In my opinion. No disrespect meant to people who are afraid of frogs.
    5. We’re going to keep posting. It’s a tribute to the versatility of LEGO, a tribute to democratic activism in Iran and a tribute to a builder who saw something worth capturing and did it well.

  8. David4

    I like it when people don’t understand history.

    The Supreme Court ended the recount before we actually had a recount, and we don’t elect presidents by how many states you win, we don’t even elect presidents by popular votes, that had to be the dumbest thing I read all year and I read a lot of garbage.

  9. driverdriver

    I appreciate the comments that have managed to avoid descending into insult. That being said, I still don’t agree with posing minifigs in provocative manners. I mean, what’s next- minifig porn? I also would like to note there’s a certain lack of creativity using minifigs in general. This is why I refer to them as Lego’s worst creations. Yes, I have beef with the minifig but it’s my own personal beef. You don’t have to agree, as nothing could quite possibly change my mind about them. I would also like to ask- do you really consider this a poignant statement? I fail to see using a minifig in any sort of vignette as “poignant”. These’ aren’t statues sculpted for the sake of conveying messages, they are toys intended on providing entertainment. If anything when I see stuff like this, I tend to chuckle and that’s not the reaction I should have when faced with subject matter like this. Again, this is just my personal reaction to the Minifig in general. If you were to have built this scene using plates and bricks, I’d find it a bit more satisfying and could probably see the passion involved with creating a truly “poignant” scene.
    I just posed some minifigs into the Nick Berg decapitation scene. It took 15 seconds (mostly spent plucking). The only thing I got out of that was sense of immaturity that harkens back to the days of posing Scarlet and Duke in various sexual poses. Now, I am going to sell this scene (dissembled of course and without the poignancy ) on Ebay as today I am waging a war against one of Lego’s worst, most unimaginative creations known-the minifig.

  10. Thanel Post author

    @ david4: As a former civics teacher myself, you are right about how we do not elect presidents in the US, but was the “dumbest” really necessary? Be respectful of others, though they may not possess all the facts.

    @ driverdriver: Oh, the minifig. I love minifigs. Sorting them right now. This may have entered the arena of irreconcilable differences, where the disagreement is nigh-theological and bridging the perspective gap will take years of heated debate. Probably w/out resolution. There already is minfig porn, though I won’t link to it. Comparing featuring pro-democracy demonstrations to porn? Really? I don’t mean this as an ad hominum attack, but I just can’t figure out a more deft way to make the point: Your issue seems to be yours and center around the minifig and keeping LEGO all-frivolous, not some inherent empirically provable fault w/ the builder, vignette or post. Which to your credit, you do acknowledge. Insulting or demeaning other people’s creations, though, just isn’t cricket. I’m a big fan of CONSTRUCTIVE criticism.

  11. Josh

    @driverdriver – I guess we are at an impasse. I didn’t realize that your issue was with minifigs in general. That wasn’t clear from your original post. You are right. Minifigs are not statues. However, I think that can make the impact more effective when they are used to convey serious thoughts. As Thanel has already said, comparing porn to the Iranian protest vignette is absurd, as is comparing it to posing GI Joe figures in sexual positions. I don’t think they are same in any way.

    As for your question, yes. I think this scene is poignant. Even more so now, as we are seeing the government response to the protest.

    I can also guarantee that Moritz spent more than 15 seconds planning and constructing this vignette. I know you don’t agree, but proper building and posing of figs is very difficult.

  12. driverdriver

    Sorry, I have been a bit vague and loopy as the news has me loosing sleep. Nothing usual though, as I have interest in that part of the world. Anyway, I should have made the link between violence, porn, and the Iraqi vignette that was posted on a previous thread. I should have posted there. You are right about my statements not applying to this pro-democracy vignette as it is obviously done without the violence that seems to be emerging at the current moment. Apologies.

  13. Nolnet

    24 hours not on the computer and now I find this… wow. Well, thanks Thanel and Josh for your words and thanks driverdriver for keeping it civil. I guess I should put in my own perspective of the matter now.
    At first, I wasn’t sure what you, driverdriver, disliked more: me building this or TBB blogging it. Either way, I can only—and I’d like to—clarify things about the former.

    1) I am awe-struck by what is happening in Iran at the moment (as Thanel already pointed out, Iraq has absolutely nothing to do with this.) The Iranian people is sick of the fundamentalistic religious system that tries to control their lifes. And despite of a serious possibility of getting arrested or worse, they stand up and tell their government—peacefully(!)—where they can stick their “election” results.
    This takes real guts. And it comes from a people that we western folks often and very much falsely tend to see as sinister in whole.

    2) I actually did plan and “build” this very quickly. I did it between reading the news over breakfast and going to work. However, it isn’t a MOC and it’s certainly not supposed to picture creativity, skills or whatever. Instead I wanted to express my feelings of support to the Iranian people, nothing more, nothing less. That’s why my original post on flickr is accompanied by the unmistakable headline “GO IRAN”. I could’ve posted a pic of my hand with a green wristband or write a text, but…

    3) …lego happens to be my medium of expression. (I love minifigs, too, by the way). It’s not the first time I depict my opinion on social matters via lego, and I do it in a pretty much enclosed environment of AFOLs, who consider lego an art form and not a toy.

    4) I didn’t want to stir up a controversy. Mind you, I’d have no problem with doing so if my opinion was controversial, but in this case…. seriously—I fail to see how my minifigs are posed in a provocative manner. Except, of cause, to the Ayatollahs currently ruling over Iran, but I highly doubt they visit my photostream. There may also be some cynical bastards who consider an instable and threatening Iran as more profitable for their military industry, but again, I’m not talking to those.

    5) I don’t think I’m an attention whore. I like it when people like my stuff, talk about it or blog it just like the next guy, but I don’t run around asking for it. So, thanks for the attention. Now, everybody get back to the news and hope that the people of Iran can live freely some day. It would be a welcome change to the world of today.

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