Monday, 5 November 2012
Haven't I seen that somewhere before?
LEGO has had some great licensed themes that fans have enjoyed, and have always had some extremely imaginative home-grown themes. But sometimes, the lines seem a bit blurred. Sometimes, the influence of a certain film on an “original” theme is not very subtle. Not that this is a bad thing, as it’s given us some great LEGO adventures over the years! Read on to see which themes probably didn’t come from a completely blank drawing board…
The most blatant recent example of this is the rather awesome Dino range. LEGO did have the Jurassic Park licence previously, and used it in the Studios theme. In 2012, however, it seems Jurassic Park was still lingering in the back of the minds of a LEGO design team. The sets are generally more reminiscent of sequel The Lost World than the original Jurassic Park, except for Dino Defense HQ (5887) which is a brilliant dinosaur enclosure… despite the inevitably that things won’t end well! T-Rex Hunter (5886) is almost a direct copy of how the tyrannosaurus at the end of The Lost World is to be transported. Thank goodness the designers were so willing to be influenced by the films, as it means we now have all of these great moulded dinosaurs for our LEGO collection.
Adventurers and Pharoah’s Quest have both been clearly influenced by Indiana Jones- once again, a license that LEGO has actually produced sets from. Johnny Thunder himself has an awesome hat and an Indiana Jones-esque costume, and a bumbling professor friend not unlike Marcus Brody. The early sets varied from 1930s style vehicles (keeping with the Indy-fluence) to tombs and temple ruins. As with Indiana Jones himself, the Adventurers were a globe-trotting bunch and raced their nemesis around the world to jungle and oriental settings. But if Indiana Jones ever returns to cinemas, let’s hope that he doesn’t end up on Dino Island…
James Bond was busy on missions of his own, so LEGO Agents were saving the world in 2008 and 2009. Obviously they work as a team rather than a lone agent like Bond, but the villains in the sets with their eccentric hair, dastardly smiles and metal limbs looked like they came straight out of a 007 adventure. The gadgets that the Adventurers use, such as a rocket-cycles, waterjets and robot mechs feel like they were designed by Q branch. The crazy scale of the missions that the Agents are undertaking – on water, land and air – is certainly straight out the super spy’s playbook. This theme probably had influences from other movies too, but Bond seems to be the over-riding one here.
So those three themes have very clear influences from the silver screen, but what other examples are there in LEGO? Feel free to share your thoughts on other themes that may have been inspired by movies, TV, books or other toys in the Comments section below.