For over four months, the citizens of Hong Kong have been protesting a proposed bill that relinquishes some of Hong Kong’s autonomy and places the city-state under more direct influence of mainland China. More than 2 million peaceful demonstrators have been met with increasingly violent responses from the Hong Kong Police Force, who have bolstered their ranks with mainland Chinese forces and decried the protests as riots, shooting thousands of canisters of tear gas at the civilian crowds. LEGO builder Wing Lee, a Hong Kong citizen, has created this poignant vignette of a demonstrator and a riot-gear equipped policeman.
The two figures stand atop a five-petal orchid, the symbol of Hong Kong, while the color fades from the city’s traditional red and white motif beneath the armored officer. The world is watching this time, and may democracy prevail.
DUPLO is an excellent way to engage the minds of 2-5 year olds and to introduce them to “regular” LEGO, which they would likely play with once they get a little older. The larger pieces, simple construction, and cute scenarios are ideal for little hands and developing minds. But leave a youngin’ watching a certain…animal-named news station unsupervised for fifteen minutes, and they may raid the stash of smaller bricks to build adorable DUPLO riot gear to keep the adorable DUPLO zebras from playing with the adorable DUPLO giraffes. A builder who goes by the dubious name of Paddy Bricksplitter shows us the way with this DUPLO riot frame.
Plenty of LEGO System, Bionicle, and Duplo parts are mixed (you can do that, you know!) to construct this admittedly coherent mech suit armed with a high powered water cannon, tear gas launcher and a heavy duty shield. When your DUPLO denizens get too rowdy, you can bop them on their adorable DUPLO noggins with the baton. Justice is served, poopy-heads!
If Marius Herrmann hasn’t been a name gracing your feed with his iconic sci-fi and game culture builds, this is an excellent example of what you’re bound to find. Based on a previous design, this Guardian of the Shrine is the lead commander of the 2041 police force. Its imposing stance, strong and at the ready, undeterred by the surrounding rain. This gorgeous Photoshop edit really shows this character off, showing purpose behind his being. Great part use comes naturally to Marius and this pillar of authority is no different. His use of a Scala denim jacket as a short Hakama sets the bar, while the socket wrench found on each limb brings continuity in construction. I feel that the small space blasters on the sides of the head, add to its formidable appearance, leaving me to question if I he would know more about me that I do.
For another view of Marius Herrmann’s atmospheric LEGO creations, have a look at his Alfheim from God of War.
This slick robotic four-legged police unit, dubbed KA-9 by LEGO builder Red Spacecat, has such a polished aesthetic to it that I could almost see it called the “iProtect” in our dystopian future. The ultra-grippy toes made of rubber Technic axle connectors is a genius design, and the subtle detail of eschewing larger tiles for a series of 1×1 tiles on the upper legs gives the perfect impression of heavy armor plates.
Japanese cars well-engineered and sometimes innovative, but in my opinion they are often not all that exciting. However, Japanese manufacturers do have a history of building some pretty neat sports cars, like the 240Z /Fairlady or Nissan GT-R or the Honda CRX.
A little more than a year ago, during a work trip, I was lucky to spend a day in Tokyo. It is an amazing city and ever since I’ve been thinking about building some Japan-themed LEGO models. I already have a collection of LEGO emergency vehicles, so adding a Japanese police car seemed like a good idea. Their typical vehicle is the Toyota Crown, which certainly fits the not-all-that-exciting category. However, a bit of internet research revealed that, until a few years ago, the Tokyo Police department also had Mazda RX-8 patrol cars. It’s a curvy coupé with suicide doors that was mainly used for traffic duties. Building one of those was a much more interesting prospect. I simply had to have one.
Pixeljunkie is wanted dead or alive by the LEGO police. His crime? Impersonating a 1955 Buick police car with amazing detail! He modeled his car after one that appeared in the 1950s American action crime drama TV series Highway Patrol. A number of American cars of the 1950s were famous for their decadent levels of chrome trim, and Pixeljunkie’s Buick does not disappoint. For example, use of the Bellville bucket handle to form the shape of the grille is incredibly effective and brilliant!
Lego artist Martin Redfern has a unique signature style to his builds: they always seem to be from a bygone era, and captured beautifully. This police cruiser is loosely based on a 1950’s cruiser like it was straight out of a mobster movie. He even built an engine under the hood and loaded it with full decor on the dashboards. You’ll definitely want to check out all the details on this one.
Click to see more under the hood
I think Halfbeak has misread the contest rules for the annual LEGO Speeder Bike contest and built a spider instead of a speeder! In all seriousness, this is a very original design. The competition is looking tough though, but luckily this police speeder has more than just originality going for it.
A conservative colour scheme that is unmistakably police-like combined with some stickers and a compact, complex design are all great, but Halfbeak did not stop there; the little accompanying drone really adds a lot to the general idea of police control while the colourful base helps the build stand out more. A touch of digital editing at the engines rounds off the picture as quite a treat to look at.
Even non-LEGO fans recognize the simple LEGO smiley face. Unfortunately, in a hypothetical world full of thousands of identical smiling minifigs (now where have we seen that before?), being instantly recognizable can lead to problems. Illustrating one of the potential hijinks of such a world, Paddy Bricksplitter built an Identity parade (or as we call them here in the United States, a police lineup).
After a crime, police officers will place their main suspect in a lineup along with several “foils” who have a similar weight, height, build, and coloring as the suspect. Then, the police officers will bring in an eyewitness (in this case, a severely injured minifig and presumably, the victim of the crime) to view the lineup through a one-way mirror and “pick out” the criminal. But when everyone looks identical, how can you possibly identify the right person? And who would ever volunteer to stand in as a “foil”?
Here’s the lineup of City sets for the first wave of 2017. Police are a surefire seller for the City theme, so it’s no surprise that the first wave revealed focuses exclusively on law enforcement. 2017 will bring everything from ATVs to helicopters to mobile command centers for the world’s most crime-ridden city. We don’t have the prices yet, but it won’t be too hard to guess from the part counts. Check out all 8 sets below.
60143 Auto Transport Heist, 403 pieces
It’s a little known fact that the LEGO company once explored the idea of a 20’s gangster theme. Sadly it was not meant to be (too soon?). Anyway, that hasn’t stopped many builders exploring the idea themselves. And since I’m heading off to Brickworld Chicago today, it seems fitting to present a couple of recent examples.
First up Brian Lyles (BrickCityDepot) applies his formidable skills as a Café Corner style builder to bring us the Club 23 Speakeasy.
It comes equipped with every convenience and every character you’d expect to find in such an establishment – including some unwelcome guests in the form of a police raid! Check out the full album to see the action unfold.
I imagine the Godfather slipping out the back and making his getaway in this snappy Model-A Ford:
Meanwhile, down by the river, a gang of enterprising bootleggers take advantange of all the ruckus up at Club 23 to smuggle away their wares in this rum-runner built by Joshua Brooks.
Looking forward to meeting some of you at Brickworld! I’ll be live tweeting from the event. And keep an eye out for me, Chris, Simon and Carter in our fancy new Brothers Brick shirts. And deliver the secret passphrase to claim some swag. You’ll be making us an offer we cannot refuse.
The police state will soon be able to look in on you from the skies, thanks to this creation by Galaktek. The folding, rotating, runway on the back of the truck looks awesome, and fun to play with. It’s like a mini aircraft carrier! The idea of a hovering vehicle, which launches flying vehicles is preposterously fun, too. Make sure you check out the other creations in this series in his photo stream, especially the robot dogs.