LEGO Adventurers was a theme that LEGO first released in 1999 and discontinued in 2003. Starring explorers and archaeologists in far-flung locations like Egypt and Tibet, the theme had many similarities to the later licensed LEGO Indiana Jones theme. Thanks to its unique characters and comparative longevity for an original LEGO theme, the theme remains popular with LEGO builders to this day.
I’m a sucker for a LEGO Adventurers build, and here Robert4168/Garmadon revisits a classic Adventurers setting in celebration of the theme’s 25th anniversary. The gang’s all here! Whilst Johnny Thunder scales ruins, the rest of the team are busy sailing to an extravagant temple emerging from the jungle. But in true Adventurers style, it’s not quite the abandoned monolith they were hoping for.
It’s worth keeping your eyes peeled, as many LEGO fans are building tributes to this great theme right now.
It’s only been 25 years since we were introduced to the Adventurers LEGO theme. And we can see how much Johnny Thunder and Sam Sinister have aged since then in this unique creation by Gregory Coquelz. The scale here is fantastic, providing a detailed look into the retired lives of these rivals, something that would be difficult to convey at minifigure-scale. Tiny details like Sam’s monocle and the bent brim of Johnny’s hat are brilliant bits of character creation. And I love the Easter eggs paying homage to past adventures like the Baron’s photo, the Anubis bust, and the T-rex head, each holding a revered spot above the mantle. Even the detail put into the board game makes it instantly recognizable as Monopoly. Good luck keeping that gem of a dessert out of Sam’s clutches, Johnny! I’m sure he cheated anyway.
On the heels of some sweet Indiana Jones news earlier this week, it’s a good time to pop in on the ongoing escapades of LEGO’s other, less cross-promotional adventurer: Mr. Johnny Thunder. And no one captures that better than builder Ids de Jong! Here he and his team explore a beautiful jungle pagoda while braving the hazards of a rickety rope bridge. The minifig posing here is spectacular, with one teammate about to take the plunge thanks to a snapped plank. The temple stands in brilliant contrast to the surrounding vegetation, a white monolith among so many earth tones. But the flora itself is the true standout here, utilizing parts both new and old to create a lush landscape atop these cliffs.
LEGO Adventurers was my absolute favourite theme as a kid. Especially the desert theme. Seeing the Jungle Explorer Collectable Minifigure got my hopes up for the theme to be renewed. This might also explain my soft spot for LEGO Adventurer fan creations. This build by Kevin Wanner really hits the soft spot. We get very well put together fleshy minifigure renditions of all the familiar faces. Two very well designed vehicles. However the absolute highlight of this creation has to be the beautiful palm trees. There are dark tan eggshells used to create the trunk of the palm tree. The crown of the tree uses dark tan, green and bright green plant leaves to indicate the lifespan of a palm tree leaf. It looks stunning!
Based on a scene from Rouge One: A Star Wars Story, Robert4168 has created this unique display which adopts the look of the LEGO Adventurers theme. Instead of the heroes obtaining the Death Star plans from a data library, here they appear to be climbing bookshelves in order to reach the treasure at the top. But alas, they are pursued and one of the heroes has fallen! A curved plant stem represents a guard for an elegant cutlass on the wall, with more of the piece forming an artistic trim at the upper section of the build. This is truly an unexpected combination of themes and it would be great to see more themes mashed together like this.
I am such a fan of all the tributes coming out right now to LEGO sets of the past! And this remake of 5938: Oasis Ambush by norlego takes me right back to 1998. I love the detailed sculpting of the creature atop the sarcophagus. The Anubis head is expertly utilized, and the sculpting along its back and paws is genius! But my favorite part has to be the inclusion of an actual oasis in the background, trimmed with some beautiful dark green tile and two modern-style palm trees. Some printed pieces from the original set make their triumphant return, like the hieroglyphics on the sides of the tomb and the map held by an updated Lord Sam Sinister. Hopefully, this new Johnny Thunder can wrest the treasure from his evil clutches!
Intrepid reader, I report from deep within the desert quarter where we find Robert4168 has revisited a classic LEGO theme to present Baron Von Barron’s Biplane. The stylistic flourishes that make 1998’s 5928 Bi-Wing Baron a classic set can be found here, recreated using new parts and techniques in this build. Robert has repurposed modern weapons to serve as the biplane’s machine guns, which work incredibly well, as does the textured desert landscape the Barron sails across! But what impresses this Adventurers fan the most is the trailing map and binoculars, just like the original box art!
Everyone knows LEGO’s late-90s Adventurers theme was based loosely on Indiana Jones, and this fantastic diorama by norlego drives home the point by doing some character swapping, putting Johnny Thunder and Baron von Baron into the iconic tank scene from The Last Crusade. The build is magnificent, with the massive Hatay Heavy Tank looking straight out of the movie (which, as norlego points out, was a custom design for the film, not a real-world tank). Let’s hope Johnny doesn’t get raked over the treads!
There’s a great love across the LEGO community of the old Adventurers theme, and Jellyeater‘s latest build shows there’ll be no sign of that stopping. In this build, Johnny Thunder finds himself exploring caverns that were once home to the lost Toltec Empire. As he traverses down through the foliage above, his faithful companions Dr. Charles Lightning and Pippin Reed are already busy, documenting the site — from creepy crawlies to signs of past tomb raiders.
At the centre of the build, the underside of roller skate pieces is used to great effect adding detail to the altar. Towering over this, are giant statues that look suitably imposing with individual detail and all with different Hockey masks, sourced from an old Sports range suggestive of the long forgotten gods.
I’m excited to see where Jellyeater takes the Adventurers next!
If you take a look at 1saac W. photostream, you’ll notice a lot of brick build cars. They specialize in building brick vehicles. Building LEGO vehicles is something you either hate or love to do. I am not a big fan of cars; therefore, I do not navigate towards building cars out of LEGO. However, I can really appreciate it when someone else manages to do it so well as 1saac W. does. They made a Toyota FJ40, and it looks just like the real deal. There are a lot of small parts incorporated in this build to get the level of detail just right. As far as I can tell, there have to be at least 7 minifigure hands used in the car. The actual number may, however, be higher. To display the lovely FJ40 1saac W. made a jungle-themed base. They even added a driver, and it is no one other than Johnny Thunder. And although we are used to seeing Johnny in vintage cars, The FJ40 suits him very well.
I’m a 90’s kid. Early 2000s LEGO shaped my childhood, with Bionicle, Racers, Harry Potter, and Star Wars. However, one theme was grounded enough to offer a haven from all the crazy. Orient Expedition was the short-lived sequel/reboot to the popular Adventurers theme from the late 1990s. The theme follows Johnny Thunder and his team of explorers in seeking the lost treasure of Marco Polo. Similarly, Lord Sam Sinister also sought the treasure, but chose to try and steal it instead finding it on his own. GunnBuilding reimagines the 7417 Temple of Mount Everest playset, where the heroes and villains have a showdown on top of the world’s tallest peak.
Norlego takes us on an LEGO Adventure with everyone’s favorite non-licensed LEGO adventurer Johnny Thunder! In some creations, the minifigures are the last things that get added to bring the scene to life. My guess is that in this creation, the minifigures were created first and inspired the rest of the build. All the usual suspects are there. We have Johnny, Pippin Reed, Dr. Kilroy, and wherever Johnny goes his nemesis Sam Sinister follows. Also, there are Slyboots, Mike and Harry Cane. This time they are portrayed in a more realistic skin tone rather than yellow.
Norlego built an irregularly shaped base with lots of angles and exposed studs, perfectly mimicking the desert lands of Egypt. What would an oasis be without some lush palm trees? These are made beautifully. The use of the prickly bush for the dead leaves at the base of the palm tree is a really nice touch. The colour of the swordleaf indicates whether a leaf is dead, doing fine or a baby leaf. Or maybe I am just looking into it too much? Last but not least I think the table deserves some love. It is made out of triangle roadsigns. The seams between the road signs make the table look fold-able which would really be handy when going on an adventure.
Want see more Johnny Thunder creations? Check out these articles.