As a concept, Batman has some issues. In today’s world, a billionaire who gets his jollies from beating up the economically disadvantaged is…not a great look. Luckily there are some brighter aspects to his mythos to help balance things out. Robin became his kid sidekick back in 1940, and his bright costume and cheerful quips brought a little light to the Dark Knight. Oh, sure, you could point out that this was just adding “child endangerment” into the mix, but I’m trying very hard to be upbeat about things today. John Moffatt, at least, gives me a real reason to smile with this LEGO recreation of the Boy Wonder in Miniland scale.
Sure, some of these connections may not be 100% purist, but the Robin character has always been one to break the rules, at least a little bit. Headlight bricks are used for Robin’s shoulders, and also provide an interesting connection point for the not-quite-attached 1×2 tiles that create the angled shape for the gloves. I also like the cape, made out of click-hinge plates.
Is this just a start of a heroic run of Miniland figures like John’s Avatar collection back in 2015? Only time will tell. But I hope so.
You ever have one of those days when you mention something in idle conversation, and suddenly every site you visit online is advertising a related product to you? I have, and it’s downright creepy. But you just know retailers are looking for even more invasive ways of getting their products in front of you. And, unfortunately, I think we may be getting a glimpse of that future right here. Taking inspiration from pixel artist Kenze Wee’s Cyberpunk vending machines, LEGO builder lokiloki29 has created a futuristic drone that combines convenience with an unsettling feeling of “buy or die”.
Built at miniland scale, this creation looks completely plausible. The variety of products on display do look tempting, and Ninjago-sourced logos are right in line with the aesthetic. Cheery red domes and curves create the impression of a friendly gumball machine. My favorite detail, though, is minifig hammers as feet. Those dainty pads makes this whole thing seem cuter somehow. Maybe I will get myself a little treat from this scuttling nightmare that followed me home.
…and that’s how they get you, I guess.
In addition to the amazing LEGO models created by builders all over the world, The Brothers Brick brings you the best of LEGO news and reviews. This is our weekly Brick Report for the third week of November 2019.
LEGO Star Wars miniland displays at LEGOLAND parks all over the world are in their last days. Read on to find out when they will be removed and what caused the change.
TBB NEWS & REVIEWS: This week we reviewed an iconic vehicle from the Caped Crusader and took a look at the new Disney+ Mandalorian set.
TBB FEATURES & MORE NEWS: We also took a deep dive into the origins of LEGO wooden toys and got a look at some more stunning photography of a handful of truly unique LEGO bricks.
OTHER NEWS: There were quite a few other interesting LEGO news articles from around the web this week. Here are the best of the rest:
Click to read even more LEGO news of the week
Have you ever played one of those games where you look at an image and find the hidden details? They used to be in magazines, but these days there are loads of apps for them. And now, there’s even a 3D LEGO version! This greenhouse, built by César Soares, is a hidden-gem masterpiece. While there are lots of LEGO creations with incredible parts usage, this one goes above and beyond, and may be one of my absolute favorites!
No spoilers! Take a moment to scan the whole thing, and read below once you get stumped. Can’t remember where you last saw that part? We’ll fill you in on a couple of those hard-to-pinpoint pieces!
Click here to discover which items you may have missed
Talented LEGO artist Dave Kaleta has been producing large dioramas at “Miniland” scale for several years, illustrating key moments of his life, from his first date, wedding, and pregnancy announcement with his wife to the first months with a new baby. Dave has updated his series with another first — a flashback to the first steps of the toddler we first met still in his crib two years ago.
Titled “One Small Step,” the scene is full of life and detail, including realistic details like the electric heater plugged in to the wall next to the fireplace. But it’s the people and animals who truly bring this scene alive — mom lets go of the baby as dad waits for him across the room, with a cat and dog in the background cheering the little guy on.
Enchantments, potions and magic! What else would one need? César Soares sure knows what is important in life – who cares about all that pointless real stuff, right? Joking aside, this is a pretty impressive creation. The builder says he has wanted to build in this scale for quite some time, and I can totally agree. Minifig utensils and the thicknesses of some bricks are often out of proportion with the minifigs they are made for, and that often looks very cartoony. This is not a bad thing on its own, but some times, it is nice to see more realistic Miniland scale creations like this one.
I have said that this creation is impressive, and just being built in Miniland scale is obviously not enough to achieve that. The scene is filled with unique part usage, most notably cloth pieces. Just look at the broom and the unrolled scroll! And still there is more to see, like legs of the chair and table that are tilted off right angles, clever use of the log minifig costume under the table on the right and the wall texture, which uses a technique most often seen as floor, due to how unstable it would be when set upright. I wonder what kind of magic César used to keep it in place!
Back in 2011, LEGO introduced the 10220 Volkswagen T1 Camper Van to its line of Creator vehicles (followed more recently by the lovely 10252 Volkswagen Beetle). Both these official sets are at a larger scale than LEGO’s own Miniland scale, which is the scale that TBB’s own Ralph Savelsberg frequently builds his cars and trucks in. Ralph’s latest vehicle is VW’s T3 Westfalia camper van, complete with a pop-up top for extra head room when you head inside after a long day of drinking cold beverages from a cooler while sitting in your lawn chair.
Ralph makes extensive use of hinged connections and 1×1 “cheese” slopes attached sideways to achieve subtle angles throughout the model, from the section below the windscreen to the shape of the van’s body underneath the sliding door. Naturally, the interior upholstery is a lovely checked pattern of orange and tan.
France is very, very good at cheese, fashion and wine—and occasionally at engineering autos. A legendary Peugeot 607 from the early 2000’s turned out to be good enough to merit being recreated with LEGO pieces somewhat 15 years later by Latvian builder Rolands Kirpis. If you’re a long-time Rolands fan, you’re likely used to his unique style of building which largely avoids curved slopes yet achieves a smooth look anyway. The scale of the car is similar to the famous Miniland vehicles, yet just a little bit bigger, giving more space in the design for smooth transitions and some neat touches like pretty accurate mud guards.
The brick-built nurse is clear enough as LEGO, but the room created by Kirill Simerzin begs a closer examination. Overflowing with terrific details such as the slatted window blinds, IV drip, and power bed, you can almost hear the quiet beeping of medical devices in this rendered scene of an Intensive Care Unit.
The larger miniland scale allows for lots of extra details missing from typical LEGO hospitals.
This fantastic service shop by _BrickBro_ will tune your official 10242 Mini Cooper to tip-top shape, with just a quick engine and transmission replacement. It’s got all the necessary tools and accessories to spruce up that evergreen hatchback, from replacement hubs to new steering wheels.
Based on the popular youtube series Mighty Car Mods, the shop features hosts Marty and Moog walking viewers through their top-to-bottom restoration of this cult classic car.
Click to see more of the shop
This is a question we all ask ourselves every now and then, but members of a Russian LUG took it a step further and built their life with and without the precious brick for a recent LUG building challenge. Over on the shelf, we see that Timofey Tkachev‘s home would probably be filled with a mineral collection if he didn’t have his LEGO hobby. On the right we can see what Timofey guesses his apartment would like without LEGO to keep him grounded. There are lots of clever details to see on both sides, like the carpet’s edge and the LEGO shop bag nearly out of frame. The figure also references the builder’s previous creation, where we can compare what the builder fancies he’d look like with or without ABS.
A year ago, we featured a series of autobiographical builds from Dave Kaleta. He’s recently shared the next step in his story, which he states took 6 months to create. Given that the next chapter in his story involves a small child in a crib, 6 months seems perfectly reasonable!
There are some great things in this scene: mom’s posture flipping on the light, and the perfect fetal position of dad on the floor. I think the 1×2 brick with the technic hole is inspired use for what I imagine is a chatty, energetic toddler. The Batman and Robin minifigs as toys are perfect at this scale!