Just as LEGO did with The LEGO Movie and The LEGO Batman Movie, there’s a wave of collectible minifigures dedicated to the characters in September’s The LEGO Ninjago Movie. Revealed only a last month, 71019 The LEGO Ninjago Movie Collectible Minifigures will be hitting stores August 1 ahead of the movie, and feature 20 characters who, nicely enough, are not all ninjas. But much like the world of Ninjago itself, these characters, who range from a sushi chef to a teen pop fan, abide in a stereotyping mashup of all things Asian. The figures will retail for $3.99 each, and are concealed in blind packs just like previous series.
The drill will be familiar to LEGO fans by now: each series is shipped to stores in a larger case of 60 which doubles as a display case.
This series contains 20 minifigures like The LEGO Batman Movie series, and fortunately it also follows suit in dividing the case into three full sets of the 20 characters, though the placement within the case is randomly assorted. We sorted our entire case just to be sure anyway.The packs show a selection of the characters in a non-LEGO-built world on the front, while the back is solid black covered in legalese.
One of the heroes of The LEGO Ninjago Movie, Kai is outfitted for training with wooden Kendo swords, made with brown umbrella stand elements. He’s got a classic Samurai armor piece over his ninja garb, and has a black Kendo helmet with a gold mask and red highlights.
Somewhat unusually, Kai comes with both his super styling hairpiece and the Kendo helmet. The legs are printed on the front, which is par for the course these days, and the torso’s back has Kai’s gold emblem.
Spinjitzu Training Nya
Equipped with a pair of katanas, which appear in brown for the first time, Nya
is a simple figure ready to kick some tail. Her scruffy black hair is pulled back into a pony tail and ringed with silver ribbon, and I believe it’s a new hairpiece, though I’m sure a reader can inform me for certain. Her white ninja robes extend onto the legs, and she has a small bit of text on the left leg in the made-up language of Ninjago which spells out ninja.
Nya’s head, like all the heads in this series save one, is single-sided. The torso back simply has a larger version of the logo on the front.
Lloyd, The Green Ninja
The film’s protagonist, Lloyd is the only character in this series to appear in full ninja garb. He wields a new scimitar with a fancy gold dangle, and carries a 2×3 tile printed with blueprints for a dragon.
Lloyd’s eyes are distinctly green above his smirking expression, and both a helmet and hairpiece are included.
The ninja-wrap helmet is a new, 2-part system that uses a mask that fits around the neck for the lower part, and a cap for the top. Sadly, Lloyd’s hair cannot fit on with the mask attached.
Lloyd’s ninja garb is printed with a black diamond pattern over the black torso, giving an interesting and subtle textured effect to the suit, and even the arms get this treatment.
Master Wu has appeared in many sets before, and there’s not much new here apart from the monstrously oversized box of Corn Flakes. Apparently Master Wu is a cereal connoisseur in addition to wizened teacher.
Master Wu’s lower robes are a cloth wrap, though it’s somewhat baffling why this character gets that treatment but others such as Nya do not. The tan legs have sandals printed on the toes, which should make them quite useful.
The old villain is back, and in force this time. In this series alone Garmadon shows up three times, and this first instance is the most fearsome. Garmadon wields a large polearm made of an umbrella stand and a new bladed element, which has a stud on the tip as well as a stud on each side.
Garmadon wears the new straw hat in black. This element appears throughout the other The LEGO Ninjago Movie sets, but this is the only character in this series to get it. The hat is basically the same as the older style worn by Master Wu, except for the slight differences in shape. The underside still holds a single stud, and the top, while tantalizingly close to being a stud receptacle, is not compatible with the LEGO system. Garmadon’s double-tall body, meanwhile, employs a special torso element for the upper piece that incorporates the pauldrons. The only back printing on either torso is the continuation of Garmadon’s dark blue belt around his waist.
Yes, that’s right folks, LEGO has officially made a selfie stick. On the upside, it includes a rather nice little 1×2 tile printed as a smartphone, provided you don’t mind having Jay Walker’s face permanently emblazoned on it.
The main point of interest in this character, however, is the orange scarf, which is a brand new element. No doubt we’ll see this element pop up again on some carolers this winter in a new Winter Village set. The back of Jay’s torso is blank.
He’d better hope traffic is light as he watches life backwards through his selfie stick.
Every minifigure series needs an emo teen, and now it’s Lloyd’s turn. As far as these things go, this figure is actually rather awesome. There’s a new hoodie element, which includes a shock of Lloyd’s dark tan hair, and Lloyd is ready to eat some ramen with a spoon and brand new bowl element.
Cole’s dark green torso is unprinted on the back, and the pants have a simple belt and pockets pattern with just a tiny bit of the green hoodie printed on.
The bowl is printed with an intricate blue dragon, and has a single anti-stud on the bottom. The inside of the bowl is smooth, and the bowl’s diameter isn’t compatible with other elements—it’s just slightly larger than a minifigure head, but not as large as a 2×2 round element.
Cole is the simplest minifigure in this series. He wears a simple dark blue shirt and black pants, and carries the boombox that first appeared with the Series 3 Rapper. It’s black with gold highlights.
Evidently AC/DC exists in the Ninjago universe, because yes, that actually says AC/DC. The shirt’s back says WORLD TOUR 1985 and a list of fake tour dates with a SOLD OUT stamp across them.
Lloyd’s mom is adorned in a sand green jacket and brown pants, and she carries a dark red handbag.
Like Cole, she’s light on accessories.
A badge on her jacket reads Koko.
Misako’s orange hairpiece is new, with long hair pulled tight in a bun and pinned with a pair of red chopsticks.
The nerd of the Ninjago boys, Zane wears a sweater vest with brainslugs from the Alien Conquest theme, and a pair of pleated white trousers. Of course, he’s also prepared with a huge backpack of the style that first came in the Series 16 Hiker. Sadly, Zane is left empty handed, as he gets absolutely no accessories.
The backpack is dark grey with a red bedroll.
Zane’s flat top haircut is faded into the neckline thanks to printed all the way around the head.
Shark Army General #1
Looking a bit distressed, this mermaid officer wears a quite stately dark blue uniform. Her black hairpiece is a reuse of the Zombie Businesman’s dark brown one from The LEGO Movie, and she carries a pink slurpee.
The General’s spines are soft plastic sheets (you punch them out) which bend around the neck. There’s no printing on the torso’s back.
Shark Army Octopus
Having not yet seen the film, I don’t know if this is an octopus-man, but I suspect it’s an octopus on a man. In either case, there’s quite an awesome dark orange octopus headpiece, which is made of soft rubberized plastic. It fits around an airtank, and the figure beneath appears to be wearing a dive suit.
Like all good Octopus soldiers, he’s equipped with a stud-shooter and a sturdy fish.
The pearl dark grey airtank element is new, and shows a battery indicator on the front.
It’s too bad it’s not a swordfish.
Shark Army Angler
Apparently The LEGO Ninjago Movie will be quite aquatically themed. This soldier has a sandgreen angler fish for a helmet, and wears the same airtanks as the Octopus soldier. Like the Octopus, the Angler is soft, rubberized plastic, and has white painted teeth and mesmerized eyes. He’s equipped with some sort of fishy mace—perhaps it’s a morningstarfish?
The soldier has a female head, and a glowing red dot on the suit.
The angler’s seen some stuff, man.
Shark Army Great White
Despite the name, this minifigure is regular sized and mostly dark blue. The shark head is incorporated into the shoulder pauldrons, and instead classic airtanks are used. Black airtanks haven’t appeared in a set in over five years, so it’s about time. The Great White carries a black fish, which is the first time in that color and only the fifth color for the fish element.
If the underwater thing doesn’t work out, I’m pretty sure Great White here could fly away with those eagle’s wings mounted above his eyes.
The Great White’s battery must have been a Samsung. Even the fish has caught on fire. Embers are printed on the right arm and side of the left leg, but the torso back is plain.
Nothing says awesome dad like a 70s dark orange suit and wide tie. You’ve got to admit the aviators are pretty awesome, but I’m left wondering what Misako saw in him that made her think “Now there’s the father of my child!” Garish outfit aside, Garmadon is ready for vacation with a flyer for a volcano lair and a camera.
This time around, Garmadon’s extra-tall body uses the second style of special upper torso, which has also appeared in previous waves of Ninjago. All four of Garmadon’s arms are double molded with dark orange and black, and there’s no back printing on any of the elements.
That says “Home”, in case you’re wondering. After all, it’s the American dream to have a volcano lair on a quiet street with a white picket fence.
Now that Garmadon’s got his Volcano lair, it’s time to get themed swag. Starting with, of course, pajamas. Extra tall, naturally. Perfect for waking up to get a midnight snack. Volcano Garmadon has a sand green bowl with a decorative wave motif in white, and a flat silver spoon.
Garmadon also wears a monstrous black Samurai helm, which is a new element. The light blue double-tall torso is the same style as used in Flashback Garmadon, and the volcano pajamas are printed on all four sleeves, but lack any back printing.
Gong & Guitar Rocker
This stoic music fan is storing up his energy for the next head-banger. The rocker’s long black locks are hard plastic, with a red painted band, and he carries a red guitar with white and silver printing. The black legs are double-molded with white boots and have nifty rips showing yellow knees.
The rocker is the sole minifigure in this line to have a double-sided head, with the obverse mid-scream. The skull shirt reads “Metal”, so maybe in the Ninjago universe Rock and Metal are the same genre.
How about a sweet dragon tattoo?
Time to get your science on at GPL (Garmadon Propulsion Laboratories). Clearly a play on JPL (NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratories), this is where the best and brightest in Ninjago go, including Batman fans. This tech graduated top of her class at GIT, and now gets to wear a long white labcoat and tote a laptop and mug.
Unlike that whiz Robin, the GPL Tech’s glasses are permanently printed on her face. Her brown hair is loosely braided, employing a common element.
Sure to see wide use outside of this theme, the Sushi chef would have made an awesome addition to a standard CMF wave. Using the same bald hairpiece as Series 16’s Scallywag Pirate, the Sushi chef wears simple robes. He wields a cleaver, a rare element which has only appeared twice previously; in Series 6’s Butcher and The Disney Castle. Included are also two black 1×1 round tiles printed as sushi, and a 1×1 round black brick to turn one into a full sushi roll. Nicely enough, the sushi tiles are not the same as the current sushi tile, so builders of sushi joints will be able to offer patrons a variety.
The chef’s robes are covered in shrimp.
What does Ninjago Pop music sound like? I’m guessing something like Everything’s Awesome but with more Unikitty. Here’s a teen pop idol in saccharine hues to help you find out. She’s got Harley Quinn’s hairpiece, this time in light pink and light blue, and wears a white ballerina’s tutu printed with a rainbow of colors. The legs are striped tights doubled molded with light green and light blue boots.
The back of the torso is printed the dress and a pattern of hearts and stars.
Overall, this is a solid collection of characters. It’s steered away from the typical Ninjago fare and brings us more characters from the world. The Shark Army torsos will be great for a variety of applications, while the more mundane denizens will fit right into any LEGO city.
Finally, it must be said: as with previous CMF series, this line is produced at LEGO’s factory in China, and the figures are noticeably lower quality than standard figures. The fit on all of the minifigures is looser than those from most other sets, with arms and legs requiring far less effort to move (the printing, however, is fantastic). This fit quality isn’t anything new, and these figures are no worse than any previous CMF series. It is only because of LEGO’s ludicrously high quality that the CMF lines stand out as being lesser. If you’ve never noticed, or have but it hasn’t bothered you in the past, don’t let it dissuade you now.
71019 The LEGO Ninjago Movie Collectible Minifigures will be available August 1 for $3.99 USD each.