With the recent launch of Disney+, there’s been a lot of buzz about The Mandalorian, the latest Star Wars series to hit the TV screen. Builder Jaap Bijl reaches back into Star Wars’ televised past with a Star Wars: The Clone Wars duel between Obi Wan and the bounty hunter Cad Bane. The purple planet of Teth is well-represented here, with nicely sculpted rockwork and enough tonal variety to keep things interesting.
Both characters are locked in a fierce battle, complete with sabers waving and guns-a-blazing. While they may be the stars of the show, my favorite element in this scene is the black and gray tree. The leaves are cleverly sculpted from curved slopes, along with a few ball and socket joint connections.
When it comes to creations shared on The Brothers Brick, it may seem like the brick-built models are the stars of the show while minifigures stand in as accessories. This is not always the case, though. For example, in Hugo’s model of Draco Malfoy casting Serpensortia, the architecture acts as a frame or backdrop while the minifigures take center stage.
Don’t get me wrong, this backdrop is built amazingly well – from the stained glass window, to the arch over the window, and the mixed brickwork – but I’m a sucker for well-integrated minifigures. While there are some stock characters mixed in, such as Filch, Snape, Draco and Harry, my favourites are the other characters that fill out the scene. There’s a subtle art to choosing the right facial expressions and hair pieces to bring a character to life, and then you need to position them in a dynamic way to ensure they’re reacting appropriately and not all standing parallel or perpendicular to each other. Hugo has nailed all of that in this scene. The full range of expected emotions is visible, with characters upset, scared, or angry depending on their house. Yet this ignores the most cleverly placed minifigure of them all…the one that’s included in the building itself as a moving painting.