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Vakama Montana's Chronicles!


Chronicle 3: Lego Friends And The Whole Frenzy Within The Lego Fanbase

Posted by V.M.Torious 4.0 , Dec 24 2011 · 391 views
Lego Friends, BZP, Lego, 2012
Happy Holidays everyone! I know it's Christmas Eve, but a lot of stuff has happened in the past month while I was gone!

First of all, there have been a lot of controversy surrounding one of Lego's newest themes for 2012: Lego Friends, which is their latest attempt on getting girls to buy Lego Bricks. A majority of Lego claim that the new "ladyfigs' don't look like the old-fashioned minifigures used since 1978, and they look more like Polly Pocket dolls than actual Lego minifigures. Most Lego fans claim that the sets show stereotypical things girls normally do, such as taking care of pets or running a beauty shop. Also, there are more purple, aqua, turquoise, and pink bricks than any other current Lego theme out there. While some older Lego fans and guys would buy the sets just to get that certain brick or color for their MOC (such as a Perry the Platypus MOC), others would simply ignore the ladyfigs or the whole set together.

Face it folks, the pink Lego brick has been around for a long time, even with the Paradisa theme of the 1990s, Lego's attempt on getting girls to play with the normal Lego bricks and minifigs boys play. I have to admit that I own at least 2-3 sets from the Paradisa theme (the Ice Cream stand and the beach playsets). Don't forget Belville, Scala, and the fashion-oriented, jewelry-like Clickit sets from 2003, which (partially) caused the financial meltdown over at the Lego company in 2004, when they recorded record losses.

Since then, Lego re-focused their products on boys, especially on popular themes such as Star Wars, Bionicle, Racers, Creator, and City, with the occasional female minifigure or character (like Gali or Natalie Breez) thrown along. Still, those female minifigures weren't acceptable to some girls since it's not "curvy" enough for them, even with some of the collectible minfigs Lego has today. Tecnically, according to the Lego company's press release on their 2012 sets, these ladyfigs are called "mini-doll figures", and they have the same functions as a regular minifigure, such as hairpieces and hands, which can be compatible with Lego System elements such as cups, caps, and even those Star Wars lightsabers. Unfortunately, these mini-dolls are a bit taller than the regular minifig, curvier, skinnier, and has the ability to add additional accessories to the hairpiece, such as bows and headbands (bows definitely). And they won't fit into some regular sets and vehicles (too bad there's not enough room for them in those new Ninjago vehicles, unless you buy Kai's transforming motorcycle. Seriously, I dare you to).

I have to admit that I came up with the idea of improving the Lego lineup towards girls back in February 2009, when Lego announced their partnership with Disney to bring Prince of Persia, Toy Story, and Disney/Pixar Cars to the Lego lineup. At that time, Disney Channel shows such as Hannah Montana and Wizards of Waverly Place are popular, so I figured, why not have them as Lego themes? I basically used social media sites to start up a petition to convince Lego to make Lego sets based on Hannah Montana and High School Musical, but that ended up as an epic failure. And think about the licensing fees too.

Nevertheless, I heard about the new Lego Friends sets through Brickset and seen the pics, but I haven't seen the sets yet at the Lego section of my local Target (or most likely soon, the girls' section with all of the Barbie/iCarly/Victoria Justice stuff), but I'm impressed of the quality of the sets. Gone are the days of fairy-tale themes or playing "house" (no, no the TV show on Fox, the houses Lego released for their Creator lineup or the set that's going to be included in the Friends theme). And welcome to a world of much more modern stuff that we see in real life. Not only that, but there are things that I might get for my Lego minifigs too (like a pool)!

And regarding about whether the theme will succeed or not, I think it will. If Lego pulls out all the right stuff for creating the sets and promoting the theme, then it will become the next Bionicle/Ninjago/Hero Factory, but for girls. It's time that Lego needs to listen to their consumers, fans, and Lego Club members on product input, especially with a girl's theme like Lego Friends. However, Lego needs to use social media websites (such as Twitter) to advertise and promote Lego Friends, as well as buying ad space on girls' magazines in order to get the word about Lego Friends out. Plus, having a couple of TV specials or a TV series (just like Lego did with Ninjago and Hero Factory) would help Lego Friends out too, whether they're online or on a cable TV network like Nickelodeon or Cartoon Network. If they focus more on the theme, then Lego can become a top toy company for girls just like what they did with boys during the past year.

So, do you think Lego Friends will become the next big thing in the Lego universe, or end up as a publicity stunt just like Kim Kardashian's wedding and 72-day marriage? Comment and Happy Holidays! :afro:

(note: All rules and regulations in the BZP forums and blogs will be enforced. Please keep it clean and report offensive posts to the moderators A.S.A.P.. Thanks!)

~ :haunu: VM 4.0 :haunu:


Comedies- Voting Update For Chronicle #2

Posted by V.M.Torious 4.0 , Nov 22 2011 · 349 views
comedies, BZPower
Hello again! Here is the current voting tally for "Which Comedy Should I Bring Back to the BZP forums" (as of November 21, 2011):

Inika Palace Hotel: 1
Club Nuva: 1
Bionicles on Lego Island: 0
The Many Farces of Toa Tuyet: 0

...but don't worry folks! There's still enough time for you to vote for your favorite VM comedy! Just go back to the last post (Chronicle #2) and comment on which one of my classic comedies you would love to see appear on the new BZP forums! Thanks for the support folks!

~ :haunu: VM4.0 :haunu:


Chronicle 2: I'm Back (Plus An Announcement About My Comedies)!

Posted by V.M.Torious 4.0 , Nov 21 2011 · 465 views
comedies, life, Hero Factory and 4 more...
Hello BZPower Universe! It's been a while since I've posted anything at BZP, especially in the Comedies section in 2009. Well, here's a better intro for this...


...enough said. If you're wondering why I've changed my username from Vakama Montana0111 to V.M.Torious 4.0, then here's why. As I discovered the new forums, I wanted a brand-new, fresh look to my username and character from the previous forum and Bionicle is over. So, I decided to find something that sounds cool and Hero Factory-like. The first step was to take the first two letters of my screen name (the letters "V" and "M") and shorten it to make an initial (don't worry guys, "V.M." still stands for my former username, "Vakama Montana"). Next, it's time to find a word, or should I say, a word pun. As I was going through the Hero Factory Wiki, something came into mind, and the word "Victorious" came into my head, out of nowhere. So I merged "VM" and "Victorious" together like Lego bricks, and this became "V.M.Torious". Finally, I needed a version number. Since this is the fourth time using the Vakama Montana username, I opted for version 4.0. And that's how "V.M.Torious 4.0" was born.

Oh, and you wanna know why I was gone for so long? Okay, here's the lowdown: I know that ever since I joined BZPower in 2007, a lot of things had changed, especially between 2009 & 2010, when Lego replaced Bionicle with Hero Factory. I have been mostly inactive during that time period, with the exception of posting in some of the BZP topics regarding about current events going on in the Lego Universe (I'm talking about Lego news and stuff, not the MMORPG game of the same name that's about to go offline in February 2012). And there's the "BZP Forum Shutdown Crisis of 2011", when BZP's forums went offline for sometime between Spring and Fall 2011. I was planning to make a comeback in the Comedies forum at that time, but I lost interest during that time period.

So here I am, a month after the forums re-opened on BZP. As soon as I heard that the forums are going to re-open, I've began planning my comeback to the Comedies section, but for me, it took about a month for me to decide whether to bring back some of my classic comedies, or start all over again from scratch just like back in 2007.

And this is where my huge announcement begins: I am bringing back some of my hit comedies to the new BZP forums! But, I need your help, guys, and this is the fun part!

Here are the comedies that you will be voting on:

1. Inika Palace Hotel (season 1, a.k.a. the first 26 chapters)
2. Club Nuva
3. Bionicles on Lego Island
4. The Many Farces of Toa Tuyet (a spoof of "The Many Deaths of Toa Tuyet" by Greg Farshtey; this is going to be a remake)

However, there is one exception. I will not be bringing back non-Bionicle parody comedies (for example, Nokama Montana, if any of you guys remember) because they have been either deleted from my old computer when I got a new one during this summer, or been removed from the BZP forums when they crashed in 2009.

So vote for your favorite Vakama Montana comedy by mentioning only one of the four comedies listed above, but feel free to add your opinion on why you want that comedy to be brought back to the new Comedies forum. The comedy with the most votes by December 31, 2011 will be brought back in a re-mastered format (yes, that means cleaning up the script so that it looks nicer for the new forum) on January 2012! And here's another announcement... if the comedy that you voted gets enough replies on the new forum, then I will be writing new chapters of that comedy starting in Spring 2012! :afro:

Good luck folks! And if you can't remember any of the comedies listed above, then here's a link to my old comedy library from the previous forum below:

Since it's in an archived state, please do not make new comments on the comedy libray. Have fun and enjoy the memories! :happydance:

~ :haunu: VM4.0 :haunu:


Chronicle 1: The State Of The Lego Club

Posted by V.M.Torious 4.0 , Jul 20 2007 · 282 views

Hello guys! I'm Vakama Montana, and you've probably know me as the author of the BZP comedy The Inika Palace Hotel. Today, I'm starting a new blog called "The Chronicles of Vakama Montana", and it's a blog about my views of the Lego industry (from Legoland to the Lego Club and their products), as well as the Bionicle Universe (like my opinions of a Bionicle character or about the Bionicle comic books)

So let's start off with the Lego Club. As you may know, this year is the Lego Club's 20th Birthday (Yay!) _icon_joy_.gif , and I've been a member of the Lego Club since May 1996 (about 9 years after the Lego Club is started), and I really like the magazines they send to me every two months. Sometimes I like them, and sometimes I didn't like them (espically with those creepy Insectoids in the September-October 1998 issue, rememeber that?). Now that the magazine has gone through another "makeover", where is the Lego Maniac (remember him from the 90's and early 00's?)? Where's Redini (the dude with the minifig head who answer Lego Club Members their questions)? And is it good like the magazines from the late 80's and 90's?

Another issue I'm concerned about is the Lego Club website. Back then, I like the Lego website and I visit the site often, until one day, my computer won't allow me to post anything on Lego's Message Boards. Worse, the website is not up-to-date (i.e. you can't upload videos to your Lego Club page), but the only thing good is that the Lego Club Pages is updated so that you can spend your club points on new stickers (that got even better when it was integrated with the Kanoka Point system on Bionicle.com). Problem is that my computer won't allow me to run the script for the Lego Club Pages (a script is something that uses the Adobe Flash Player 9 or something; I'm pretty unsure about that). But what I like about the Lego Club Website is not only the Cool Creations and games, but also the monthly Comic Caption Contest (that makes me laugh! rotflz.gif )

For some members, they like the upgrades Lego made to the Lego Club recently, but for other members, they don't like it (or vice versa). So here's my point of view: I really like the upgrades that Lego's going to make to the Lego Club Website, but I wish that they could add more stuff to the website other than what's mentioned in the July-August 2007 issue. Here are the stuff Lego needs to put on the Lego Club section:

-A Music section
-Allow members to upload videos, as long as it's approiate to younger members and it's Lego-related

And probably that's it. I'm pretty sure that some Lego fans (espically the AFOL, or Adult Fans of Lego) are happy with some of the new features of the redesigned Lego Magazine and Lego Club Website. And I don't think that Lego should add more stuff despite publishing the regular version and the BrickMaster version of the magazine (except bring back the calendar).

I'm also glad that they brought back the Lego Maniac, except that it's a minifigure named Max (he made an appearence in the May-June 2007 issue), but I wish that they bring back the Redini and some classic Lego characters...

NEXT CHRONICLE: Happy Birthday Hapori Tohu and BZPower! (Vakama Montana's Point of View)

June 2018

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