The Lego Movie Minifigures or widely confused as Series 12 (they’re not) are finally available in Australia and I’ve had the pleasure of having a complete set to review. Unlike other Collectible Minifigure Series where I usually split my reviews into 3 parts, I’ve decided to cut it down to 2 parts so that it reads and flows a lot better.
At time of writing, The Lego Movie minifigures are slowly but surely starting to show up in department and toy stores across Australia. So far I’ve seen them in Myer (Melbourne CBD) so expect them to roll out to Kmarts, Targets, Big Ws, David Jones and other usual stores in the coming few days.
As I mentioned above, this series is officially NOT Series 12, although it’s the 12th Series of Collectible minifigures released or 13th, if you count the Team GB Olympic minifigs as an official Series. Nevertheless, this series stands out from the rest as it directly ties in with the upcoming 3D animated flick, The Lego Movie and features a colourful collection of characters that show up in the movie.
Some like Emmet, Wyldstyle and President Business are main characters, whereas the others like Abraham Lincoln probably play a minor cameo role in the film. That being said, The Lego Movie Minifigures share a lot of similarities with previous series in the type of characters, for example, historic figures like Shakespeare and Lincoln, a dude in an animal costume and of course, a mermaid which have all been staples of past series.
Here’s the breakdown of each complete box of Lego Movie Minifigures, which should give you an idea of the relative rarity of each minifig.
Each blind bag costs AU$4.99 as usual.
6 Hard Hat Emmets
6 President Business
6 Scribble-Face Bad Cops
6 Panda Guys
4 Wild West Wyldstyles
4 Abraham Lincoln
4 Larry the Barista
4 Taco Tuesday Man
4 Where Are My Pants Guy
4 Wiley Fusebot
2 Mrs. Scratchen-Post
2 William Shakespeare
2 Gail the Construction Worker
2 Velma Staplebot
2 Calamity Drone
2 Marsha Queen of the Mermaids
Lego have once again tweaked the distribution of minifigs so that they all appear in even numbers now. This pretty much means that a third of all characters are now only available in 2s, so if they prove popular, it might be a little difficult tracking a whole set down. Personally, I’m fine with the spread since to me, the less appealing minifigs are the rarer ones.
These are what the new blind bags look like. We’ve never had metallic blue before, and it looks alright since the colourful characters are contrasted perfectly with the dark blue background, so they’ll be reasonably eye catching.
Here’s the leaflet containing the checklist of the minifigs. Handy to keep around if you’re out hunting for them to remind you of what elements and parts you should be feeling for to identify them.
And here’s the back. There’s more of the cast of The Lego Movie (including the sweet as Metalbeard Mech) as well as a QR code you can scan. I don’t have an iPhone so I didn’t bother. Too bad for you Android or Windows Phone users.
Enough backstory, let’s get right ahead to the reviews! Since I’m splitting this into 2 parts, I’ll review the first 8 so hang in there, this’ll be a pretty lengthy post! To introduce the characters and flesh out their role in the movie, I’ve added in their respective bios from Lego’s website so you’ll have a bit of a better idea as to who plays who.
Hard Hat Emmet “Good morning, city!”
Every day, Emmet goes to work exactly by the steps in the instructions booklet that he always keeps in his hand. As part of Bricksburg’s busy construction crew, he helps to rebuild the city as briefed by President Business.
Emmet wants to be popular, but he struggles to stand out in the crowd. Even his fellow construction workers hardly know he’s there. But all of that is about to change, thanks to a mysterious stranger and a legendary Prophecy about the most special minifigure in the entire world!
We kick off with the protagonist of the film, our man Emmet himself! All dressed up as a construction worker (it makes total sense in a movie about construction toys!) Emmet has a lovable smile and incredibly charming personality that just seems to ooze out of his minifig.
He’s got a lovable smile and a very detailed bright orange uniform which reflective strips on the front and back. On his legs, he has a tiny nametag with his name on it, which is a cool bit of detail.
A neat thing about Emmet is that his construction hard hat is one single piece, with a bit of hair sticking out in the back. His reflective strips continue on his back.
And here’s the best part about Emmet, his absolutely adorable alternate face which has the best grin ever printed on a Lego minifig. Curiously enough, on his alternate face he sprouts eyebrows that weren’t present on his main face. He is the Master Builder… so I guess that’s one of his mystical powers.
He has a 2×1 tile which is his instruction booklet that’s mentioned in his bio. It’s really neat and looks like a bunch of things to do if you were in an emergency (like being eaten by a shark) or things to do at work. It does seem that Octan is a huge evil major conglomerate that owns everything in the movie.
Emmet being the main character naturally appears in A LOT of sets so you’re probably going to end up with at least half a dozen of him by the end of the year if you plan on getting the movie sets. It’s easy to dismiss him as just another construction minifig but I kinda like him. He’s got an average yet charming appeal, which kinda suits his movie character.
How To Find One: There are 6 Emmet per box, so he’s not that hard to find. Try looking our for the 2×1 tile but make sure you don’t confuse him with Scribble-Face Bad Cop, who also had a 2×1 tile. You can tell that it’s Emmet if it doesn’t have a pair of handcuffs. His helmet might be a little hard to identify since the Cop also has a similar helmet, so be wary.
Minifig Rating: 8/10 (his silly alternate face grin tipped the scales a little)
Abraham Lincoln “Four score and twenty bricks ago…”
Nicknamed “Honest Abe” because he never borrows anybody’s bricks without giving them back, Abraham Lincoln lives in a log cabin that he built all by himself, in the middle of a forest that he built all by himself, then cut down, and then rebuilt all by himself again.
Abraham Lincoln is full of good and fair advice, so his fellow Master Builders often ask him to settle arguments over who gets to build what. He would probably make a great leader, but President Business’s Octan Corporation makes all of the voting machines!
About damn time we had an Abraham Lincoln minifig! One of America’s most iconic presidents and founding fathers, Abe’s debut in the Lego world does a lot of justice to his original self. He has a black 3 piece suit, complete with a bow tie and a watch chain, which is always useful to have if you need formalwear for your minifigs.
His accessory of choice is the Gettysburg Address, with the legendary opening line “Four score and seven years ago” printed nicely on a 2×2 tile.
Complete with a comically tall top hat, which I assume was to make the minifig look taller than his peers (Abe was 6′ 4″). It has a distinct shape that curves in slightly towards the brim. Surprisingly, they chose to connect his beard to it which I’m quite undecided on. While it makes the minifig look great as Abe Lincoln, there’s little room to use it with other minifigs as they’ll make any other minifig look like Abraham Lincoln.
Another point to note is that Lego used a different kind of plastic for the hat-beard combo. It’s squishy but not as squishy as the other kinds of squishy plastic and if you look at the picture closely, you’ll notice that it has a matte-like texture to it. It’s a little higher quality than previous rubbery parts, but I still don’t like that it’s not hard. The matte-ness also throws me off a little.
It’s a pretty decent minifig, but I’ve never liked rubbery plastic elements. Call me old school, but Lego should not be squishy.
How To Find One: His top hat is the most obvious piece to feel for. It’s the only large rubbery and squishy element in the whole series, so it shouldn’t be too hard to identify him when groping blind bags.
Minifig Rating: 7/10
Mrs. Scratchen Post “Here kitty, kitty, kitty, kitty, kitty…”
Emmet’s neighbor Mrs. Scratchen-Post takes her cats with her wherever she goes. She has so many that she can hardly keep track of them all, though that doesn’t stop her from covering all of her belongings with kitty-themed pictures and decorations.
Even though Emmet knows each and every one of her cats by name, from Jasmine to Bad Leroy to Fluffy, Fluffy Jr. and Fluffy Sr., Mrs. Scratchen-Post barely pays attention to him. After all, he doesn’t even have a tail or whiskers!
Didn’t we just have a Crazy Cat Lady masquerading as a Grandma in Series 11? I dunno what’s going on at LEGO but they seem to have this strange fixation with cats.
Anyway, this crazy cat lady or as she is formally known as Mrs Scratchen Post happens to be a huge improvement over previous cat ladies. For once, she actually looks pretty crazy with her uncombed grey locks and puzzled look on her face.
If you’ve had cats you’ll understand – cats shed a LOT and they get all over your clothing. I absolutely love that Lego added this little detail in to Mrs Scratchen’s clothes. She has a fanny pack which obviously contains cat treats and an adorable cat face printed on her pink shirt. Unfortunately, no back printing but that’s not that big of a drawback since her hair obstructs most of her back.
Her hair piece is new and looks great. Thankfully, it’s all hard plastic. She also comes with a cat (duh) but it would’ve been brilliant if LEGO was extra generous and had thrown in an extra cat. Overall, I love the minifig. They’ve really captured the essence of crazy that there’s no reason not to consider this the most purr-fect version of a crazy cat lady.
How To Find One: The hair piece is a little hard to differentiate from the Calamity Drone or mermaid, so try to feel for the cat, which has a distinct uh… cat-like shape. There are only 2 Crazy Cat Ladies in each box so they might be a little hard to find.
Minifig Rating: 9/10
Taco Tuesday Man “If only it could be Taco Tuesday every day!”
The Taco Tuesday Man makes the tastiest tacos in town. They’re the most irresistible treat in all of Bricksburg, and people come from far and wide just to take a bite of their mouth-watering crunchy, zesty goodness.
Even President Business is a big fan. That’s why he’s declared a city-wide Taco Tuesday when every rule-following citizen will gather outside to get a free taco. The Taco Tuesday Man sure is glad people like his tacos so much, and that it isn’t all part of some secret evil scheme to control the entire world!
Hola from the Taco Tuesday Man! It’s been a while since we last had a Mexican dude (Series 2’s Maracas Man was the last) so this is a great way to get a sombrero and a snazzy poncho as newer fans wouldn’t have been around for Series 2. The Taco Tuesday Man carries a huge dish filled with tacos (or nachos if that’s more your thing).
One of the most vibrant minifigs in this series, I really like the prints on the brim of his sombrero as well as the poncho.
Without the poncho, he has a plain green shirt underneath with red sleeves. It looks kinda weird with the poncho off but I guess there’ll always be demand for plain minifig torsos, which are kind of rare these days.
This has got to be one of THE BEST accessories that Lego has created. Just look at it. From the chilis in the middle to the brilliant design on the outer rim of the dish, everything just seems to work here. I can’t say I’m not tempted to purchase several Taco Tuesday Men if given the opportunity just for these dishes. I’m a huge fan of Mexican food (second only to Indian), so this particular minifigure strikes a chord with me. I have to say, the accessories for the Lego Movie minifigure series have been nothing but top notch so far.
How To Find One: This should be one of the easiest minifigs to identify. The easiest element to feel is his sombrero or if that fails, just try to look out for the dish.
Minifig Rating: 9/10
Where Are My Pants Guy “Honey, where are my pants?”
The “Where Are My Pants?” Guy is the star of the #1 hit television show “Where Are My Pants?”, written, filmed, and broadcast by the Octan Studios subsidiary of President Business’s personal mega-corporation.
Every night, the citizens of Bricksburg tune in to watch the show and laugh at the crazy situations that this pantsless fellow finds himself in, and every morning, they all gather at their office water coolers to chat about their favorite moments from the latest episode. Little do they know that the show is slowly sapping their creativity and imagination – just like President Business wants!
After reading his bio, I’m a little relieved that Where Are My Pants Guy isn’t some random streaker or flasher who just loves conveniently losing his pants in front of others. There’s something not right with this guy.
Whether it’s that quizzical “what did I do wrong” look on his face or his obnoxiously loud (but super cool) Hawaiian shirt or that he’s prancing about in his undies while clutching his pants, something’s just not right about this guy. I’d almost hazard a guess that he has a few bricks loose in his head, but it turns out he’s an entertainer out to sap the residents of Bricksburg of their creativity and innovation.
I’m simultaneously thrilled and angry at his Hawaiian shirt. First of all, I love the print. The colours are magnificent and if you notice his neck area, they actually very closely matched the yellow of the minifig’s head. That usually doesn’t happen very often (which I’ll demonstrate later). What pisses me off is that while we have a marvelously designed front, his back and sleeves are completely blank. Yup, he has no back printing.
LEGO really missed out on a great opportunity to make this a knockout minifig if they had only gone the whole 9 yards with his details. Sure, you get an extra white pair of legs, but I’m mostly disappointed because I love the Hawaiian print so so much.
How To Find One: Simple! If the blind bag has 2 pairs of legs, you’ve got yourself a Where Are My Pants Guy!
Minifig Rating: 7/10 (would’ve been way higher if the sleeves and back were printed. Even the back printed would have been sufficient)
Gail the Construction Worker “Wait, I’m confused. Who are we talking about?”
Each member of the Bricksburg construction crew has his or her own special way of standing out. Everybody knows Gail: she’s the perky one! No matter how hard the day’s work may be, you can always count on her to stay cheerful while she builds and sings along to the Everything is Awesome song.
But as perky as Gail is, even she has never really noticed Emmet among her fellow construction workers. As far as she knows, he’s just another smiling yellow face in the crowd. Maybe if he does something really important, then she’ll finally remember his name!
Meet Gail, Emmet’s female construction colleague who’s apparently very into that Everything Is Awesome (warning: the song is extremely catchy!) song. First off, it’s fantastic to have a female construction worker. They don’t usually make them pretty often, so having a female character in a traditionally male dominated occupation is always a good thing if you’re promoting diversity in your LEGO city.
She’s not afraid of power tools, capable of wielding a huge jackhammer and is also not worried about getting her hands or face dirty. She’s got freckles on her face, which is a nice little touch and a pretty determined spunky smirk on her face.
Her body detailing is not too shabby. Her outfit is similar to Emmet’s except that it’s unbuttoned. She has a neat little tool belt thingy across her thighs. Unlike Where Are My Pants Guy, the yellow printing on her neck area is completely in a different yellow, which is a slight disappointment but you kinda get used to the wonky kind of yellow after a while.
Like Emmet, her hair is fused to her helmet and she has a little ponytail dangling out. It’s all hard plastic, so no squishy shenanigans here. She’s also got two horizontal reflective strips on her back. Overall, she’s not too shabby of a minifig. Female construction workers are rare, but I kind of felt like they could’ve at least included another interesting character from the movie in her place, since we already have the construction minifig quota filled by Emmet.
How To Find One: Try looking for the jackhammer, which has a very distinctive shape and feel to it. You could also potentially look out for her hairpiece, which is a lot thinner than the Calamity Drone’s hairpiece in addition to having a rounder top.
Minifig Rating: 6/10
William Shakespeare “Some are born Master Builders, some achieve it, and some have it thrust upon them.”
The celebrated wordsmith William Shakespeare is also a celebrated Master Builder, constructing brick creations with the same wit and grace with which he composes epic sonnets and speeches for his plays.
When Emmet addresses the gathered Master Builders at their secret meeting place in Cloud Cuckoo Land, everyone expects him to give a brilliant and rousing speech. But when Emmet’s words fail to inspire, Shakespeare is the first to express his disdain!
Two historic minifigures in one set does seem like it’s pushing it a little, but hey, the world’s greatest playwright is a fairly good edition to anyone’s minifig stable. Will has a ruff last seen on Series 8’s Thespian which I thought was originally meant to be William Shakespeare since his quote on the website is “To build or not to build”. It’s the exact same thing that’s printed on the tile that comes with Shakespeare. He also comes with a feather piece that doubles as a quill in Shakespeare’s hands.
Tile piece which is pretty much a piece of parchment with words printed on it is a little dull to be honest.
The highlight of the minifig of course is his semi-bald headpiece. LEGO has done a fine job accurately adapting Shakespeare’s look into minifig form although the slight gap on his forehead is a little distracting and detracts a little from the minifig’s overall aesthetic value. It’s an above average minifig for sure, due to the intricate prints on his torso (no back printing as well, sigh) and legs which makes him an easy character to slot into medieval or Castle LEGO builds.
How To Find One: This series has a lot of tiny elements included which are pretty hard to feel for. Finding William Shakespeare will be a bit tricky, but the best identifier in his kit is his ruff (that thing around the neck) which is a little squishy. It has a unique “flat dish shape” to it. Be careful of identifying him using his 2×2 tile as it could be Abraham Lincoln or Velma Staplebot. His quill is absolutely tiny but make sure not to confuse it with a revolver or diamond piece.
Minifig Rating: 7/10
Velma Staplebot “Would you like to make an appointment, or shall I summon the Micromanagers?”
The overbearing personal assistant to President Business, Velma Staplebot is responsible for keeping her boss’ schedule precisely in order, cancelling inconvenient appointments, and keeping pirates and other unauthorized visitors out of his office at the top of the Octan Tower.
But the mechanical Ms. Staplebot is no simple assistant. As one of President Business’s most loyal and trusted staff members, she is also one of the few (okay, maybe not so few) who knows his greatest secret: that he is really the evil Lord Business, out to control all the realms of the LEGO world!
We finally arrive at our first of many robots included in The Lego Movie minifigures, Velma Staplebot – President Business’ very own trusty robotic PA. Details are pretty sketchy about the plot of the movie, but there are robots aplenty which are obviously the bad guys and henchmen of the movie.
Velma Staplebot is a really neat looking minifig thanks to her distinctive 1960s Beehive hair cut. She’s dressed exactly like a secretary from the 1960s in clashing orange and brown tones. I’m not a big fan of the colour combination but I guess it’s meant to be as gaudy as possible.
Her hairpiece is immaculately designed and is a must-have if you plan on recreating scenes from The Stepford Wives. Unfortunately, no back printing as well.
Looks like they’re giving away quite a bit of the plot with the Super Secret Plan being Taco Tuesday conveniently located on her clipboard. I like the coffee mug stains on the tile which helps to make it not look so plain. Speaking of clipboards, why don’t any minifigs in the Lego universe have tablet computers yet? We’ve already got smart phones, so why haven’t we got 2×2 iPad tiles? C’mon LEGO, get with the times!
Velma Staplebot is a bit of a hit and miss for me. I love the hair and her evil-looking robotic face (it’s the crazy eyes, man) but dislike the colour combination. I get the look that they’re going for but the minifig is just unpleasant to the eyes.
How To Find One: Her hairpiece should be easy to find since it’s quite large and bulbous. Be sure to check for the 2×2 tile and as long as you can tell that it’s not Abraham Lincoln or Shakespeare, it should be Velma.
Minifig Rating: 5/10
That concludes part 1! So far so good. Emmet, Mrs Scratchen, Abraham Lincoln and Taco Tuesday Man are so far the standout minifigs from the first half of the LEGO movie minifigs. You’ll notice that there are a LOT of tiles in this set. Printed tiles are always nice to have but I think they included too many this time. The first 8 minifigures have been hit and miss as LEGO could’ve done a lot more to improve their overall design, so it’s hard to not feel let down when you have all these “What Ifs” in your head.
Thanks for reading! Part 2 is complete and can be found here!