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Big Announcement

Dear friends,   The past year has been really bumpy for me in a lot of ways. I’ve grappled with emotional dependency, depression, anxiety, and more. One good thing that has come about over the past year, albeit with some challenges of its own along the way, is thinking critically about my gender identity, which has led to some big realizations.   For a long time I have related really well to my female peers and have felt deeply invested in their personal struggles. Many of the fictional characte

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New MOC!

Hey y'all, sorry I've been pretty quiet lately. I've been working at the Hasbro photo studio in Pawtucket for the past three months, which has been amazingly fun, but has also slightly limited my ability to gush about what toys I'm excited for. My internship ends this Friday, so hopefully after that I'll be able to get back in the swing of things!   What my internship hasn't limited, surprisingly, is the creative energy to keep building in my free time. In fact, during the month of July I create

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Brain Attack Musings

I was just thinking about the Hero Factory Brain Attack sets and was struck by something unusual. Obviously, from a story perspective, it's obvious that the theme for the year was a combination alien invasion/zombie apocalypse. But has anybody noticed that the sets almost had more of a historical fantasy flavor to them?   Think about it — the heroes had helmets with visors that folded down over their eyes, and segmented metallic armor. Rocka, Furno, and Stormer all carried a traditional sword an

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Why are certain themes perceived as "childish"?

(cross-posted from Brickset)   This is just something I've been thinking about lately. When #70751 Temple of Airjitzu was announced, a question that seemed to be on a lot of people's minds is "how many AFOLs will be interested in buying a Ninjago set?" (or conversely, "how many Ninjago fans are even old enough for a set this size?") This is something that I see a lot of in the AFOL community — themes like Ninjago being perceived as "too childish" for most adults to take a serious interest in.  

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LEGO Mini-Dolls

Is it bad that I think the ‪LEGO Elves are a lot cuter and more interesting as mini-dolls than they would ever have been as classic minifigs? It seems like for a lot of people, the classic minifigure is sacred and untouchable. I disagree. It has some real, meaningful disadvantages. Mini-dolls aren't perfect either, but there's nothing wrong with sometimes or always preferring its advantages (more realistic faces and proportions, less blocky body shape, more detailed outfits) over those of the mi

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February is a Whirlwind of a Month

Hey everybody. Sorry it's been a while since I last blogged! But we're less than halfway through February and already there's been more than enough news in the last week and a half to fill a blog entry.   On Saturday, January 31st I was invited by Black Six to become a BZPower News Reporter. I jumped at the opportunity. I already report news to BZPower rather frequently, and this was an opportunity to both do that in an official capacity and help other people get the news THEY find on the front

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Stumbling through songwriting

I was just catching up on BZPower blogs and came across Windrider's recent blog entry where she came out as transgender. At some point after I finished reading it I felt inspired, so I started typing on my phone until I had some decent-sounding song lyrics. Unfortunately, I neither write nor play music, so the chance of turning this into a finished song is extremely uncertain. But I figured I'd share them here.   The song is actually BIONICLE-related, written from the perspective of Takanuva aft

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BIONICLE 2015 Final Review and Drawing!

In my last entry, I shared my first two BIONICLE 2015 set reviews for The New Elementary. Now, I can share the third and final (for now, at least). Check out my review of 70778 Protector of Jungle, 70780 Protector of Water, and 70781 Protector of Earth right here!   In addition, I've managed to draw something I'm really proud of for the first time in months! Check out my drawing of Gali - Master of Water right here in the General Art subforum!   I'd love to draw some other BIONICLE characters, i

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BIONICLE 2015 Reviews and MOC!

Two of my BIONICLE 2015 set reviews for The New Elementary have now been posted, with a third still forthcoming. I received six BIONICLE sets from the LEGO Group to review for that site: three Toa and three Protectors.   Check out my review of 70788 Kopaka - Master of Ice right here!   Check out my review of 70784 Lewa - Master of Jungle and 70786 Gali - Master of Water here!   And finally, because I was lucky enough to receive these three particular Toa, you can see my attempt at building a 201

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Gendered LEGO Marketing — Then and Now

This amazing LEGO leaflet from the 1970s has been making the rounds this week. It's definitely worth a read. But unfortunately, some people have tried to spin this as "look how much LEGO has changed" when in fact that's at odds with the truth of the situation.   Believe it or not, the 1970s were not some idyllic time before the concept of gendered marketing existed. During the 1970s, the LEGO Group had two themes which had what could be considered "dolls houses": "Homemaker" (http://brickset.com

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BIONICLE 2015 Parts Preview

The first of two articles I wrote for New Elementary previewing the new BIONICLE parts has been posted! Check it out here!   The second post, still to come, will be focusing on the new mask and weapon pieces. And after that, expect some actual set reviews! I've already mostly finished writing the first, and I've recently gotten word that another shipment of sets is headed my way for review. I'm hoping for one of the Protector sets — I could probably spend at least half a post talking about their

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POBZPC!

Wow! In response to a recent news report, I got a proto energy boost, which means I've finally achieved Premier Outstanding BZPower Citizen status!   To be honest, this might not change a whole lot for me. It's not like I've been actively seeking to achieve this status, and seeing my name in orange is not a huge change. Also, I'm not sure how many people actually pay attention to a member's rank when it's not indicative of a staff position. Still, I feel like it's a significant milestone... sign

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Some thoughts on the TTV Podcast

Let me make this clear: I do not hate TTV. I do not enjoy the TTV podcast (mostly just personal preference — I do not enjoy getting my news in video form when given the choice), but I respect them for what they do — and I reserve the right to be disappointed when they do it badly.  If a BZPower set review made similar mistakes, praising or criticizing features that do not exist when the set is built correctly, then I would want them to be held accountable as well. In fact, I have vocally critici

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New York Comic Con Wrap-Up

This past week has been a real adventure for me! I have already talked about a lot of what happened but I wanted to put all my thoughts in one place for future reference. On Wednesday my twin brother and I took the train to New York City for New York Comic Con. I stayed with my mom's camp friend Carson, whom I had previously stayed with back in 2012 when I attended New York International Toy Fair. Once again, she was an extremely hospitable host.   The reason for going to New York this time, of

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On Fleas and Flick Missiles

I was just in my room playing with Breez Flea Machine, a set that I got at the LEGO store last week. It's been on my wish list since before it came out, because I really love its design. The LEGO Group really showed great creativity with this year's Invasion from Below sets and I think it totally paid off. Generally the set meets all of my expectations.   Non-traditional design? Check. Its tripod build and heavy use of Technic really help it stand out from previous Hero Factory sets. It's also h

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Reboot vs. Continuation

I made the following analogy in a BIONICLE-related Facebook group I'm in, and my twin brother Lyichir says I should post it here as well, so here goes.  

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I'm going to Comic Con?

I'm going to Comic Con. And since Eurobricks is graciously providing two passes (one for me and one for a companion of my choosing) I'm bringing my brother Lyichir along. I'm honestly somewhat grateful that it's only going to be for one day, because this is going to be a VERY new experience for me and I'm sure having to plan for three or four days on such short notice would be incredibly overwhelming.   I also realize that I haven't blogged about BIONICLE's return since the initial leaks back in

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70162 Infearno Interception Review

A little over a month ago, Tim Johnson (owner of one of my favorite LEGO blogs, The New Elementary) approached me asking if I'd like to review some sets for his site. I jumped at the opportunity, and today I can announce that my first review for TNE is now live! Click here to take a look at this amazing set and the many interesting LEGO elements it offers!   I am very proud of how this review turned out. I am already working on another review for the site, and will share it here when it is compl

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The serials and their function

I was just reflecting on which BIONICLE books I liked most and least, and I got to thinking about something. While the serials are often heavily criticized for being bloated, aimless, and an obstacle to new BIONICLE fans, I'm starting to get a sense of why they were introduced in the first place (other than as a free online method of story dispersal).   The books in the year 2006 were among my least favorite. At many points felt like the characters were rushing from one battle or crisis to anoth

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Brickfair Highlights

I am way behind writing up my Brickfair recap, so I'm going to just go over some of the highlights. Shortly after I arrived, I learned that Delwyn Buckler got featured on the back cover of the event program! Awesome! Here's my haul from vendors and yard sales. It includes a lot of cool stuff, including a bunch of useful Hero Factory parts, six LEGO Friends mini-dolls for customizing, and a UV light for my MOC during the World of Lights event on Friday. At the live auction on Friday, Nukaya's B

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Brickfair and Other Plans

Welp, I'm pretty close to prepared for Brickfair. Got my clothes, MOCs, name badge, and art all packed up.   MOCs I'm exhibiting this year include Caitlyn Gauss XL, Delwyn Buckler, Blacktron Vivisector, Kit Martello, Hero Factory Canine Buddy, Rise of the Dread Colossus (submarine only — I had to borrow some of the Dread Colossus's tentacles for Delwyn's hair, so he's out of commission), and My Little Tahu. I think Delwyn Buckler and Caitlyn Gauss XL will probably be the most popular of those se

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Ask me anypony... err, anything

Because everyone else is doing it, and why not? I've never done one of these things before. So if you haven't run out of questions after replying to all the OTHER blog entries, here's one more.

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BIONICLE Movie Soundtracks

I was just listening to some BIONICLE movie soundtracks on BioMedia Project. While it's good for a nostalgia kick, I'm finding that much of the music is just as generic as I remembered.   I don't mean that in the sense that it's not memorable or distinctive. It definitely checks both of those boxes. But there's nothing about it that makes it a particularly apt fit for the BIONICLE story and universe in particular. A lot of it sounds like it could just as easily belong to an adaptation of any adv

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