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Elves on Netflix

Posted by xccj , in TV Sep 13 2017 · 163 views

So I just watched the Lego Elves series on Netflix. I've seen the previous two seasons (episodes, they didn't really last that long) and while it was a decent story, the animation always seems a bit off, and the voice cast wasn't always the best. Well, the voice cast stayed the same for the most part, but either they got better or I just got used to it. The animation, however, is way better; you can definitely feel the Voltron / Avatar vibe to it. I was expecting the elemental uses to be a bit more of the martial arts style of Avatar, and while there were a few instances of that, they kind of did their own thing, which works. (And maybe a bit more like Bionicle... I mean twice they did "combine powers for the ultimate power" kind of thing.)

The story was a bit more kiddy than I'd prefer, but I recognize that I am perhaps not in the target audience for it, so that I can overlook. The characters got a lot more time to shine (and Farran's awkwardness was one of my favorite parts) and the story had a nice positive message to it, so that was very nice. Plus, most of the playsets got some screen time and were easily recognizable. (And there were even a few bits involving the characters building something, to go along with the Lego theme... even a hilarious bit where they build something upside-down.) Plus, there were plenty of callbacks to the previous episodes to better connect the world, like the treehouse and dragons and such. (Sadly, one of the characters who didn't return was Ragana, the evil elf from last year. Don't know how they could've fit her in, but some sort of reference or quick scene might've been nice.)

But the very best part was how they threw in random bricks in with all the fantastic scenery. Like, they're walking through the forest and there are just rock bricks scattered on the ground and stuff. It wasn't calling attention out to itself, but it didn't look out of place either and was a great connection to the Lego sets.

Anyway, it was an enjoyable series. Maybe not as good as some of the Ninjago seasons IMO, but better than Legends of Chima, with an artwork style that will appear to non Lego fans but enough tributes to the construction sets to entice the set's fans. All I know is that I have to pick up a few more of this year's Elves sets.

:music:

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How does it stack up to Journey to One?

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How does it stack up to Journey to One?

Not trying to answer for xccj, but my own answer would be: better voiced, better written, better animated, funnier, more emotional, and last but not least, longer.

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How does it stack up to Journey to One?

Not trying to answer for xccj, but my own answer would be: better voiced, better written, better animated, funnier, more emotional, and last but not least, longer.

 

Oh Elves.  If only Bionicle were given your marketing power...

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How does it stack up to Journey to One?

Not trying to answer for xccj, but my own answer would be: better voiced, better written, better animated, funnier, more emotional, and last but not least, longer.

 

Oh Elves.  If only Bionicle were given your marketing power...

 

Worth noting also that Elves didn't start out with an extraordinary marketing budget. In 2015, it launched with a 24-minute TV special with fairly shoddy animation and only three voice actors. Its first of only two chapter books (a direct adaptation of the TV special) didn't launch until August, and its first activity book didn't launch until October. It only got one app a year in its first two years, both of which were fairly basic. It never got any graphic novels, and certainly never got a huge Comic-Con event to get the word out.

The fact that LEGO Elves is where it is now doesn't seem to be because it was given a substantially bigger marketing budget than Bionicle G2. Rather, its concept seemed to resonate more with kids even with fairly minimal promotion.

It may have helped that it was aimed at a demographic that not as many other LEGO themes already catered to. Part of the point of Bionicle in the early 2000s was to appeal to boys who felt like they were getting too old for "regular LEGO" but weren't quite ready for most Technic sets. Nowadays, though, quite a few boy-oriented System themes like Ninjago and Nexo Knights target more or less the same age range Bionicle G1 did, using many of the same strategies.

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I was referring to quality, not quantity.

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I was referring to quality, not quantity.

 

In the world of business, quality generally costs money. If Bionicle had been as much of a success story as Elves has been we may well have seen a bigger budget and a better Netflix series. But from all indications, it wasn't. This Elves series didn't come out of nowhere—it's the product of several years of increasing success, whereas for Bionicle it seems like it debuted to a tepid reception and only got less successful over time.

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