Jump to content

  • Log in with Facebook Log in with Twitter Log In with Google      Sign In   
  • Create Account

Welcome to BZPower!

Hi there, while we hope you enjoy browsing through the site, there's a lot more you can do if you register. The process is easy and you can use your Google, Facebook, or Twitter account to make it even faster. Some perks of joining include:
  • Create your own topics, participate in existing discussions, and vote in polls
  • Show off your creations, stories, art, music, and movies and play member and staff-run games
  • Enter contests to win free LEGO sets and other prizes, and vote to decide the winners
  • Participate in raffles, including exclusive raffles for new members, and win free LEGO sets
  • Send private messages to other members
  • Organize with other members to attend or send your MOCs to LEGO fan events all over the world
  • Much, much more!
Enjoy your visit!

Posted Image


Photo

LEGO Minifigs Getting Angrier


  • Please log in to reply
40 replies to this topic

#1 Offline Hapori Tohu

Hapori Tohu
  • None
  • Heart of BZPower

  • 16-July 01
  • 1,448 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 10:22 AM

Are minifigs losing their carefree expressions as LEGO moves into conflict-based licenses? Christopher Bartneck's research would certainly seem to indicate that. He's concerned that The LEGO Group's reputation will suffer as children's play is affected by the negative attitudes and increasingly vast array of weapons that minifigs carry. I for one am skeptical since licensed themes have always been a little more serious, but has this attitude carried over to original lines? What do you think?View the full article
  • 0

#2 Offline TheSkeletonMan939

TheSkeletonMan939
  • Outstanding BZPower Citizens
  • Emerging Mata Nuian Protector

  • 06-April 10
  • 1,666 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 10:48 AM

Well, since most of LEGO is made up of licensed properties, it's no wonder they're all so angry. Movies today are all about angry people doing angry things.


  • 0

#3 Offline fishers64

fishers64
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Master of Hunger Wild

  • 05-July 10
  • 5,668 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 10:52 AM

Yeah, society is just more annoyed and depressed in general these days. :(Entertainment reflects society, Lego makes themes based on entertainment, bingo.
  • 0

#4 Offline Lewigi

Lewigi
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Retired Staff
  • Senior Staff

  • 25-March 06
  • 3,432 posts
  •   Retired Staff

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 11:33 AM

Do they count the minifigs that have faces on both sides of the head? I saw a report about this on television, and they brought a bunch of angry minifigs to display. Most of them were either molded alien heads or the double-sided ones. That sort of thing would slant it in the "angry" direction if you counted those.


  • 0

#5 Offline Vorahk1Panrahk2

Vorahk1Panrahk2
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Toa Nuva Defeated

  • 08-July 03
  • 3,952 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 12:00 PM

I can't help but wonder if it's just because minifig faces have a far larger variety of expressions than they once used to. When 100% of the faces used to be a basic smiley face, expressions can only become more angry when more designs are introduced.

 

One also has to wonder if whoever did the research was differentiating between 'smug' and 'angry' faces. Many of them look smug, especially licensed themed sets, but that's not angry.


Edited by Vorahk1Panrahk2, Jun 17 2013 - 04:57 PM.

  • 0

Posted Image

BZPRPG Profiles


#6 Offline ToaLewaMata

ToaLewaMata
  • Members
  • Inhabitant

  • 25-May 13
  • 3 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 12:20 PM

Lego doesn't even have a HALO line that is Mega Blocks


  • 0

#7 Offline Dralcax

Dralcax
  • Members
  • Emerging Flying Force

  • 05-September 10
  • 2,227 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 12:40 PM

Lego City is full of smiling faces. Anything else, well, if you got attacked by aliens every other Tuesday, you wouldn't be happy, either.


  • 0

eW9kyVR.png


#8 Offline Queen Grr

Queen Grr
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Riot Grrrl

  • 25-May 03
  • 8,921 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 01:17 PM

Honestly there's a big part of me that still is uncomfortable able the guns and grimaces and general violence that has become a part of Lego.  I mean this is the company that, for decades, refused to make green bricks explicitly so that their product wouldn't be used to make toy tanks and other military vehicles.  This is the company that, even as recently as the 1990s, refused to make realistic gun pieces even for its licensed lines (hence the megaphone-guns in Star Wars). This is the company that, even as recently as the 2000s, insisted on calling Bionicle's swords and axes "tools," because Lego did not make "weapons." This is the company that used to run ads like this: Posted ImageThat's my Lego...that's the Lego I grew up with...that's what Lego means to me. I really admired that peaceful outlook of TLG, in keeping with its space as a toy for creation, not destruction. But they've moved away for that in the past decade or two, and how. Is it any wonder that in the same couple decades, they went from marketing themselves as a gender-neutral toy to a "boy's toy"? Lego seems to be moving backwards in terms of its outlook.I don't like the guns and the whiz-bangs and the rat-tat-tats. I like the Legos that mean peaceful creation.
  • 0
bring back "an cool dude"

#9 Offline Toa Zaz

Toa Zaz
  • Members
  • Conqueror of the Swarm!

  • 14-July 10
  • 737 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 02:41 PM

Huh. Perhaps a demonstraton of a more jaded, cynical world post-9/11. Another interesting article:

 

http://gizmodo.com/5...exposed-by-lego


Edited by Toa Zaz, Jul 05 2013 - 02:23 PM.

  • 0

#10 Offline Dual Cee

Dual Cee
  • Outstanding BZPower Citizens
  • Fluidic Master Nuva

  • 22-October 12
  • 1,306 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 03:09 PM

I believe this is part of the society, which is getting more serious. Or at least where people want more serious toys. And lego has to give them what they want, otherwise it does what companies do when they produce things that people don't want, tohey go bankrupt. Maybe by advertising themselves as "boy" toy, they make more money, and that basicly what a company has to do...
  • 0

I'm back!


#11 Offline ankyfdarkness

ankyfdarkness
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Descending into Protodermis

  • 20-August 08
  • 954 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 03:54 PM

This article was interesting because it got me thinking about current trends in society and where toy lines seem to be moving in general.My initial gut reaction is that licensed themes will not ruin the reputation of LEGO. While Princess Grr put up a fabulous argument as to why LEGO should stay away from violence, the simple fact, in my opinion, is that most young kids will not be enamored with LEGO's history and will not have any problem with the violence. After all, video games, action figures, action movies like Jurrasic Park, and board games such as Risk have existed for some time, all of which bring violence to kids anyways. LEGO will always be different from the others because its fundamental roots are creation.Taking a second look at the issue I realize that this move towards violence is probably a conscious design decision because it sells. LEGO is first and formost a company, and they need to make money. In a struggling market, LEGO has not only survived but thrived, so I am willing to trust them to make the right choice for both themselves and their fans and fan-to-bes.But when it comes right down to it, kids want violence, specifically (as toy companies would indicate) boys want violence. I find it difficult to believe this is the hard truth, but what sells sells, and LEGO's ads of the past advocating peace seem to have disappeared, which is a shame because they're just as relevant now as they were many years ago.
  • 0

silverbladebanner.jpg


#12 Offline Vezok's Friend

Vezok's Friend
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Visorak Horde Invading

  • 09-March 06
  • 10,247 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 04:44 PM

I don't have the exact numbers, but for the most part, the positive minifig heads far outweigh the ones with negative expressions. It is also interesting that it is only now becoming in an issue, since there have been 'angry' minifigs ever since Lego moved away from the standard yellow-head smiley-face. Remember Lord Sinister from the 90's Adventurers sets? Or the heads from the Drome-Racer minifigs? The Rockraiders were a tough bunch too, with only one of them really smiling. 

 

My guess would be that with more diversity and the recent change in available colours for minifigs and the newer expression-prints, it's just become more noticeable.

 

As for weaponry: Swords, spears, bows and cutting weapons of all kinds have been there in Lego for more than 20 years, it's just that new molds have been made since then, allowing for a wider range in form. As for pistols, there are about 5 pieces in total that are unmistakeably meant to be guns: The wild-west rifle, the revolver, the musket, the newer hand-gun and the tommy-gun which only came out in the past few years. 

 

True, Lego is adding more mature series to their lineup, but nothing seriously dark. 


  • 0


smaugbanner.jpg


#13 Offline Aanchir

Aanchir
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Another Chir Brother

  • 04-September 06
  • 4,537 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 05:13 PM

Well, since most of LEGO is made up of licensed properties, it's no wonder they're all so angry. Movies today are all about angry people doing angry things.

    [*]About 16 unlicensed themes[*]About 5 licensed themes[/list]Yep, licensed themes seem to have a healthy majority! {/sarcasm}Nah, in all seriousness, I think the conclusion that this is bad for kids is bunk. Learning to recognize people's emotions from their facial expressions is a key part of child development, so how is more diversity of expressions not a good thing for kids?As for the idea that LEGO is darker and more violent than it used to be, I don't have a problem with that myself. The goal of LEGO should be to help kids play the way they want to, hence why LEGO Space sets have had thinly-disguised guns since the very beginning, back when TLG was technically not allowed to include weapons in toys. If anything, I think LEGO sets have become a lot more sincere than they used to be back when everything had to be disguised or sugar-coated for parents to tolerate it.And there are still some themes that present a pleasant, non-violent sort of storytelling. LEGO City police still don't carry guns or even nightsticks. Contrast that with even Duplo, which has had guns in its pirate sets. Same with LEGO Friends. LEGO Creator is also free of guns and violence, unless you count the Sopwith Camel set in the Creator Expert line, which was technically a warplane.

    Edited by Aanchir: Rachira of Time, Jun 17 2013 - 07:49 PM.

  • 0

Posted Image recommends the following sites:
Posted Image Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image


#14 Offline fishers64

fishers64
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Master of Hunger Wild

  • 05-July 10
  • 5,668 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 07:10 PM

Did you mean 16 unlicensed themes? *is confused*
  • 0

#15 Offline Makuta_of_Oz

Makuta_of_Oz
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Fluidic Master Defeated

  • 20-February 08
  • 3,569 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 07:38 PM

The world wants childhoods to be full of happy-smiles and rainbows, and they also think that the tiniest bit of anger will corrupt a child's life forever. I call this the "Nanny Plague".

 

When I was little, I played violent computer games, especially with guns, quite frequently. Did I become a violent criminal like the world expects? No.

 

The world needs to stop being so paranoid and let kids enjoy childhood without having their lives dictated the way they are.


  • 0

If you use correct grammar in your posts (or try hard to), place this in your signature. Join Myst's campaign for correct grammar usage on BZPower!

Baterra are awesome. They enforce weapon laws. Please support their cause on CUUSOO.


#16 Offline Aanchir

Aanchir
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Another Chir Brother

  • 04-September 06
  • 4,537 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 07:49 PM

Did you mean 16 unlicensed themes? *is confused*

Yep, thank you. That's corrected now.

  • 0

Posted Image recommends the following sites:
Posted Image Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image


#17 Offline Lewigi

Lewigi
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Retired Staff
  • Senior Staff

  • 25-March 06
  • 3,432 posts
  •   Retired Staff

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 08:01 PM

The world wants childhoods to be full of happy-smiles and rainbows, and they also think that the tiniest bit of anger will corrupt a child's life forever. I call this the "Nanny Plague".

 

When I was little, I played violent computer games, especially with guns, quite frequently. Did I become a violent criminal like the world expects? No.

 

The world needs to stop being so paranoid and let kids enjoy childhood without having their lives dictated the way they are.

Still doesn't mean that's a good thing. Of course, angry faces on minifigs are a far cry from guns.

 

I've never thought there was a problem with guns being shown in something, so long as they were treated as a dangerous tool that could be used for good or bad, and with a definite demonstration of who were the good guys, and why they were the ones you should be on. LEGO does that quite consistently.


  • 0

#18 Offline GreatKhanArtist

GreatKhanArtist
  • Members
  • Steely Visionary

  • 17-August 02
  • 362 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 09:16 PM

Yes and no. During the late '90s and early '00s, TLC was losing money at an astonishing rate. During this time, there was also an overwhelming number of angry-face minifigs. When TLC went back to research what they could do to stay in the black, they discovered customers do not like mean, angry or cranky minifigs. Among other things, minifigs started getting happier again. (They also sold the themeparks and discontinued some themes, among other things.) If minifigs are getting angrier, it's because the market is driving them that way. That said, in recent years, TLC has acknowledged its AFoL and TFoL audience as never before. We are now having product marketed directly toward that audience, including the Lord of the Rings/Hobbit and to some extent, Star Wars.

 

Conversely, Lego has also expanded its traditional staples with perrenial favorites. The Town line is geared towards younger audiences and there is no violence there. Even the robbers are smiling! (okay, they're cunningly grinning) Friends is also a very happy go lucky line.

 

Sociologists have attempted gender neutral play experiments (wherein children of both sexes/genders are given equal opportunites to play with stereotyped toys) and they have found that even young children have their preferenes. Boys gravitate towards trucks, and girls to dollies. In short, boys will be boys, at least in western culture. 

 

I think that having different faces on minifigs is healthy for roleplaying. I always used the bearded head for my pirate captains, because, unbeknowst to me at the time, it represented wisdom and experience--that is what my culture taught. Likewise, children expect villians to look angry and mean. Culture has influenced sets in other subtle ways as well--bicycling minifigs now wear helmets (the ambulance set from 2012), and we have coloured minifigs. 

 

Finally, like many documentaries, this falls into the single-sided viewpoints trap. Research papers are meant to skew the audience one way or the other and are written to favour one side of an argument. Probably this is because money and notoriety are associated with said papers...

 

And we still build houses in our lego family. Lots of houses and cars that are driven by both happy and angry minifigs. Hey, sometimes you just have a bad day on the road.

 

-KhanArtist


  • 0
Verily, I say unto you, these words which you will never find on a Lego box: "No Assembly Required".

Play well, friends.

#19 Offline Tecnokua The Fedora Mudkip

Tecnokua The Fedora Mudkip
  • Members
  • Armored Protector

  • 21-November 11
  • 321 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 10:26 PM

Well problem solved we need more dolly's driving cars in today's socites. on topic even tho with all of the "angry" faced people in the media they are made funny and the good guys are well put in the spotlight like "help (some random hero) save the day buy building (something or other)" Lego has some what trimmed  the violence for kids but i don't see whats the big deal really.


  • 0

needs_more_fedoras.pngNeeds more Fedoras    But hey how about a spinne as well 7.gif


#20 Offline Meiko

Meiko
  • Premier Member
    BioniLUG Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Nuhvok-Kal Attacks!

  • 01-April 07
  • 3,074 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 17 2013 - 10:35 PM

Better get back to this.

 

Posted Image


  • 0
--
Meiko - @georgebarnick
LUG Ambassador and administrator at Brickipedia
News reporter and database administrator at Brickset
Administrator at BIONICLEsector01
 
DISCLAIMER: All opinions and contributions made under this account are based solely on my own personal thoughts and opinions, and in no way represent any of the above groups/entities. If you have any concerns or inquiries about the contributions made under this account, please contact me individually and I will address them with you to the best of my ability.

#21 Offline ~garnira returns~

~garnira returns~
  • Members
  • Encountering Protodermis

  • 02-June 08
  • 838 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 12:21 AM

I don't think that this has a big influence on children as a whole. Honestly, I think a little bit of realism won't hurt anyone. It seems to me that although many folks here are rather overreacting! It needs to happen for one, to keep lego above the water, and for two to provide some contrast to the happy go lucky smiley faces that lego has been identified with. And if you seriously thing back, Would you have gotten interested in Bionicle if Tahu and Makuta had simply settled things over a nice cup of tea?

 

An interesting study, none-the-less.


  • 0

leechfoam.gif "Copy and paste me into your sig! The shadows command you!"

My website: http://arra41.wix.com/zaro-nui ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

tarakavabanner.jpg

#tumaislove,tumaislife


#22 Offline Damaracx Caratas Xarian

Damaracx Caratas Xarian
  • Members
  • Emerging Defender of Mata Nui

  • 08-November 11
  • 2,025 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 12:26 AM

[color=#ff0000;]I myself have played many violent game and have seen pg-13 movies and rated R movies since I was like, seven.  What did I turn out to be?  I have never gotten in to a fist-fight or any other painful physical violence in my life.  Restricting kids from seeing certain things is good, but there is such a thing as over-restriction.  The reason why a-lot of parents think that violence corrupts their child is because that's what some twisted children automatically blame when they do something corrupt; they blame their violent video games as a quick excuse when really they were just twisted brats from the beginning.  I, personally, fully support Lego's choices.  What sometimes leads children into doing bad things is that they restricted from knowing that they were bad things.  Because of themes with heroes and villains they can be more inspired to do the right thing.  This is just my opinion.  [/color]


  • 0

#23 Offline Fairy Paladin

Fairy Paladin
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Mask of Time Discovered

  • 11-October 07
  • 4,092 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 01:05 AM

I too think that the Lego Minifig's faces are just a symptom of our time because really, the amount of violence in movies has increased. :/

 

... I don't mind the new diversity, though.

And hey, the fact that the jester minifig has both a happy and a sad face is actually cute IMO. :3


  • 0

#24 Offline Madara: Mangekyou Master

Madara: Mangekyou Master
  • Members
  • Mata Nuian Protector Nuva

  • 02-April 07
  • 1,719 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 11:32 AM

Honestly there's a big part of me that still is uncomfortable able the guns and grimaces and general violence that has become a part of Lego.  I mean this is the company that, for decades, refused to make green bricks explicitly so that their product wouldn't be used to make toy tanks and other military vehicles.  This is the company that, even as recently as the 1990s, refused to make realistic gun pieces even for its licensed lines (hence the megaphone-guns in Star Wars). This is the company that, even as recently as the 2000s, insisted on calling Bionicle's swords and axes "tools," because Lego did not make "weapons." This is the company that used to run ads like this: Posted ImageThat's my Lego...that's the Lego I grew up with...that's what Lego means to me. I really admired that peaceful outlook of TLG, in keeping with its space as a toy for creation, not destruction. But they've moved away for that in the past decade or two, and how. Is it any wonder that in the same couple decades, they went from marketing themselves as a gender-neutral toy to a "boy's toy"? Lego seems to be moving backwards in terms of its outlook.I don't like the guns and the whiz-bangs and the rat-tat-tats. I like the Legos that mean peaceful creation.

 

Oh my word. That is a completely different ad. It's almost chilling to see how much things have changed. That being said, I have no issue with the diversity of weapons and faces that are now popular. I remember drawing angry eyebrows on my blank smiley face system pieces ages ago.


Edited by Madara: Mangekyou Master, Jun 18 2013 - 11:35 AM.

  • 0

STAR WARS GALAXY AT WAR

E2F89AB957A1479880B245CBBECF5036.jpg

... we have cookies


#25 Offline that guy from that show

that guy from that show
  • Members
  • Submerged!

  • 30-August 09
  • 1,152 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 11:56 AM

It's true that Lego themes in general havr grown more antagonistic. Now, for every wave of sets there is a clear good guy and a clear bad guy. This is a relitivly recent development, look at themes like Incectoids or aquazone. That was only fifteen years ago and the focus was exploration and adventure. Now, if you look at Galaxy Squad or Chima it's all about conflict.


  • 0

That is all

 


#26 Offline Sylvarsty

Sylvarsty
  • Members
  • Inhabitant

  • 05-March 13
  • 2 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 01:29 PM

I think a great example of how this is no true is the new Padme figure in the Republic Gunship set. One of her faces is neutral while the other has a wide smile, even though she never smiles in the scene in the movie.


  • 0

#27 Offline Dralcax

Dralcax
  • Members
  • Emerging Flying Force

  • 05-September 10
  • 2,227 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 03:39 PM

It's true that Lego themes in general havr grown more antagonistic. Now, for every wave of sets there is a clear good guy and a clear bad guy. This is a relitivly recent development, look at themes like Incectoids or aquazone. That was only fifteen years ago and the focus was exploration and adventure. Now, if you look at Galaxy Squad or Chima it's all about conflict.

 

 

 

Honestly there's a big part of me that still is uncomfortable able the guns and grimaces and general violence that has become a part of Lego.  I mean this is the company that, for decades, refused to make green bricks explicitly so that their product wouldn't be used to make toy tanks and other military vehicles.  This is the company that, even as recently as the 1990s, refused to make realistic gun pieces even for its licensed lines (hence the megaphone-guns in Star Wars). This is the company that, even as recently as the 2000s, insisted on calling Bionicle's swords and axes "tools," because Lego did not make "weapons." This is the company that used to run ads like this: Posted ImageThat's my Lego...that's the Lego I grew up with...that's what Lego means to me. I really admired that peaceful outlook of TLG, in keeping with its space as a toy for creation, not destruction. But they've moved away for that in the past decade or two, and how. Is it any wonder that in the same couple decades, they went from marketing themselves as a gender-neutral toy to a "boy's toy"? Lego seems to be moving backwards in terms of its outlook.I don't like the guns and the whiz-bangs and the rat-tat-tats. I like the Legos that mean peaceful creation.

 

Oh my word. That is a completely different ad. It's almost chilling to see how much things have changed. That being said, I have no issue with the diversity of weapons and faces that are now popular. I remember drawing angry eyebrows on my blank smiley face system pieces ages ago.

 

 

Kids these days want a story, as the success of Bionicle showed. I challenge you to write a story that both appeals to kids, has zero conflict, no antagonists, just pure exploration. The kids will eventually get bored. Picking up space crystals with a little claw mechanism only goes so far, you know? And boys don't like their toys to conflict only verbally due to their perceiving "dolls" as "girly". Eventually, two sets will have to duke it out. Cars will smash together in demolition derbys, cops and robbers will chase each other, heck, when I was a kid, I even made my Creator sets bite each others heads off. As for the ad, that was during a different time period. I don't know when it ran, but if I had to guess, back then, it was more common to be all too familiar with the horribleness of war. Just about every parent knew how horrible fighting was. Many families might have even lost a member. And the anti-violent message was popular due to those events. Nowadays, though, we have put all that behind us. Yes, there are still tragedies, especially involving guns. But they involved significantly less people than a war. Although several people were killed, relatively few families were affected. Think about it. While the events were indeed tragic for those connected to them, if you don't live in the community that had the shooting, while you feel sorry for those affected, it really doesn't impact you. Violence these days is actually an important element of stories, especially stories written to accompany toys. In this era, the only bad violence is real-life violence. As long as the stories don't encourage kids to "try this at home" or involve excessive bloodshed and gore, everything is fine. Because toys aren't "dead" anymore at the end of playtime, video game characters can respawn, and stories aren't real at all. I really don't mind violence in Lego, heck, I even wish they would break down and release a less-cartoonish tank. As long as it doesn't encourage violence or get all gory, it might actually be an improvement.


Edited by Dralcax, Jun 18 2013 - 03:41 PM.

  • 0

eW9kyVR.png


#28 Offline TNTOS

TNTOS
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Nuhvok-Kal Attacks!

  • 13-October 06
  • 3,003 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 08:17 PM

The best response I can give to this news is, "So what?"

 

Really. Minifigs getting angrier faces or having more weapons just doesn't register on my radar of "dangerous things that could potentially promote immorality/violence." Maybe it's because I don't know much about child psychology or because I am a Bionicle fan (you know, the toyline where everyone and their dog has a weapon of some sort?), so I have no idea what effects, if any, this trend might have on the kids who are playing with these sets. I would like to read Bartneck's paper before coming to any final judgments, but until then, I will remain apathetic and probably forget about this news until August.

 

-TNTOS-


Edited by TNTOS, Jun 18 2013 - 08:17 PM.

  • 0

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

A Writerly Blog
The Tasty Library of Sugary Goodness
(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)
{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)
(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)
The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)


#29 Offline Sumiki

Sumiki
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Forum Assistants
  • Hat Enterprises CEO

  • 04-September 06
  • 11,314 posts
  •   BZP Assistant

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 08:46 PM

[font="Palatino;"]To be honest, an angry face on a little yellow plastic figure with stiff arms and legs doesn't seem like it would have nearly as bad an impact on society and the psychological development of children as, say, an incredibly gory video game where violence is the answer to everything. The brilliance of LEGO is that you can build and rebuild - and even before licensed themes and realistic weaponry came about, LEGO was still used to create fighting things, and that will continue as long as things crashing together is fun for at least a fraction of the population. I don't see this as a problem with violence as much as I see it as a result of a culture prone to overprotection. I will not argue with the point that certain things are absolutely and indisputably not appropriate for children, but at the same time I do not believe this somehow validates jumping to conclusions concerning such relatively benign things as minifig faces. It's not like they started molding hands in the shapes of obscene gestures or anything.[/font]


  • 0

Posted Image


#30 Offline Naina

Naina
  • Members
  • Seeker

  • 06-March 09
  • 222 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 18 2013 - 11:44 PM

I think I'll jump in with some stuff I learnt in psychology class.

It's true that children learn aggression from its treatment in the surrounding culture, of which LEGO provides a decent litmus test. But the interesting point is, I think, that LEGO heroes are only aggressive in defense of others. Our own beloved Toa were quite happy to be peaceful when Makuta left them alone.

But there is another aspect: some studies show that watching violence helps reduce aggression - acting as a cathartic release. That is, above a certain age, when children have matured sufficiently to not blindly imitate what they see, make-believe violence helps them release naturally aggressive tendencies.

 

When I was a child, I never played violent video games. I didn't have anything more violent to play with than a water gun. My parents gave me Belville to play with (gender stereotyping >_>). But I'm pretty violent as an adult.

I'm that way because I enjoy fighting and because my environment requires it. I am not violent because of some vague childhood incident.

 

LEGO is still a toy that makes things. Above all, it makes stories. And all of history is a story, and one filled with violence. We have made this world how it is. The children have a right to see it. (I love quoting To Kill a Mockingbird.)


  • 0
~KH~

Posted Image

I'll take your part

When darkness comes

And pain is all around

Like a bridge over troubled water

I will lay me down


#31 Offline Takuta-Nui

Takuta-Nui
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Retired Staff
  • Former Senior Staff

  • 29-July 03
  • 14,243 posts
  •   Retired Staff

Posted Jun 19 2013 - 07:40 PM

It sounds like the author is approaching this issue from a critical viewpoint of the military-industrial complex based in capitalistic tendencies. (If that sentence scared you, I apologize. If you need more clarification of what I mean, I'll gladly edit. :P )

 

It's a valid and increasingly popular viewpoint to take, especially in today's Western climate of security and state-condoned violence. These things occurring with such frequency at so many levels of human interaction will certainly cause some influence on things like LEGO, which has remained remarkably insulated from all the hyper phenomenon. I mean hyper-sexualization, hyper-violence, hyper-gendering, etc. We love taking things to the extreme now because the normal is boring, but by embracing the extreme, we only bring the extreme further into the median range of normal. It's hard to imagine what it would take to stop that deadly climb.

 

There's certainly counterarguments to this research. There should be because there are other ways to interpret this evidence and the surrounding phenomena. I think he's making a very good and interesting contribution that might startle some people because of its seemingly innocent subject.


  • 0


avkeuox.jpg

Updated October 23!

An Update Blog on the Chrysalis Saga

By Takuta-Nui


#32 Offline aljarreau

aljarreau
  • Members
  • Inhabitant

  • 26-November 11
  • 16 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 20 2013 - 10:45 AM

Well, since most of LEGO is made up of licensed properties, it's no wonder they're all so angry. Movies today are all about angry people doing angry things.

Totally agree with you. Most of LEGO's non-licensed sets (like the Minifigures line) still feature smiling faces, for example.


  • 0

#33 Offline Aanchir

Aanchir
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Another Chir Brother

  • 04-September 06
  • 4,537 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 20 2013 - 04:15 PM

It's true that Lego themes in general havr grown more antagonistic. Now, for every wave of sets there is a clear good guy and a clear bad guy. This is a relitivly recent development, look at themes like Incectoids or aquazone. That was only fifteen years ago and the focus was exploration and adventure. Now, if you look at Galaxy Squad or Chima it's all about conflict.

Now, hold on a minute. I agree, we have fewer themes without person-versus-person conflict today than we used to. But at the same time, Aquazone was one of the very early examples of a theme with competing good and evil factions. It was well-established that the Aquanauts were undersea explorers hunting for crystals they used to obtain oxygen, while the Aquasharks were a breakaway faction that decided to steal crystals instead of hunting for them themselves. Later the Aqua Raiders appeared in the United States as an additional villainous faction, and finally new heroic and villainous factions took the stage in the form of the Hydronauts and Stingrays.Even Classic Space was originally designed with two-faction conflict in mind. There were originally just two colors of spaceman: red and white. And they were imagined as two competing groups of explorers. I've read some sources alleging that the white spacemen were intended to represent American astronauts and the red spacemen were meant to represent Soviet cosmonauts. Later, this aspect of the theme was more or less dropped, but LEGO Space sets were still designed with conflict play in mind — the many laser cannons on the ships weren't meant for mere decoration, and it was well-understood how kids would play with them.

  • 0

Posted Image recommends the following sites:
Posted Image Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image


#34 Offline Draven

Draven
  • Members
  • Toa

  • 05-May 12
  • 136 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 24 2013 - 05:40 AM

Is it really fair to make such a broad generalization based on one toy company? Granted, society does seem to like violent stuff a lot, but LEGO is going with the flow to make money, not trying to start a trend, if that makes sense. 

 

To me it seems more indicative of society as a whole.


  • 0

TTS ibcZDRbf9d73oG.png


#35 Offline Lyichir

Lyichir
  • Premier Member
    BioniLUG Member
  • Premier Members
  • A Chir Brother

  • 21-March 06
  • 2,239 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 24 2013 - 11:07 AM

I think the problem with this (which is less a problem with the study as it is with most news media reporting on it) is that it automatically assumes kids will use these faces to represent themselves, and internalize those emotions. But anger and frustration are very real things, and important for kids to be able to recognize. Kids with autism in particular can have difficulty learning to recognize people's emotions via their facial expressions, and teaching them this is key to helping them learn to empathize with others and adjust the tone of their conversations based on the other participant's mood. I think diversity of expressions, therefore, is a good thing for minifigures to have, especially when double-sided heads are used (as they often are now) to give an individual fig a range of emotions.


  • 0
Proud attendee of the Bionicle panel at NYCC and after-hours Lego store event! Feel free to PM me any questions about Bionicle 2015 sets or parts!

Formerly Lyichir: Rachira of Influence
Aanchir's and Meiko's brother

#36 Offline Alyska

Alyska
  • Members
  • Stone Champion Nuva

  • 25-November 09
  • 1,555 posts
  •  

Posted Jun 25 2013 - 09:14 AM

While LEGO has certainly relaxed its stance on violence and weapons in recent years, I don't think children's play in general has become more violent. Kids have always simulated conflict in their play, long before the toy industry started cashing in on it. And let's face it, if they're going to be pretending to fight someone, it's probably better for them to be  fighting an imaginary enemy (aliens, robots, etc) than to be simulating violence against an actual group of people ("cowboys vs Indians" (sic), etc). I honestly think that's just an inherent part of kids' nature (well, not all kids, but certainly many of them) that's going to be expressed one way or another, whether the adults around them like it or not. It's an outlet. Now, the role of the adults in this situation is to help kids distinguish between reality and fantasy, and ensure that they have ways of dealing with problems in their daily lives that do not require violence.

 

Should children's media have a responsibility to model ideal values and behaviour to children? I'd like to think it should. Media reflects the values of the society it was produced in, and, if it has a big enough impact, has the potential to cause widespread cultural changes. A good book or show should do more than just temporarily entertain you. It should make you care, make you think, and, in some cases, make you question your own identity and behaviours and inspire positive changes in people. Even if this desire for self-improvement doesn't register on a conscious level  with young kids, let's face it: who hasn't, at some point in their life, tried to become more like their favourite book/film/TV character? Kids will mimic what they see on TV, sometimes in play, and sometimes in other aspects of their daily lives.

 

Does this mean that children should be protected from any form of violence? I don't think that's necessarily the case. If, however, you're a writer working on something for children, I think there are a number of questions you need to ask yourself when writing about violence.

Why have the characters resorted to violence? Is there an alternative possibility that would solve the problem?

Who is performing the violent act? Who is the violence being committed against? Why?

How often do the heroes use violence to solve problems? Is it their default strategy?

Is violence glorified or glamorised? Are there realistic pitfalls to using this approach?

 

One children's series that I think has a (generally) morally-conscious approach to violence is Doctor Who. Nearly every episode involves violence in some form, but very rarely on the part of the protagonists. Several episodes, in fact, demonstrate the tragic consequences of ordinary people being too quick to resort to violent acts, when a diplomatic approach would have been much more appropriate. While The Doctor is not exactly a pacifist, he demonstrates that smarts and compassion are often far more effective than aggression and brute force at saving the day. And yet, the show is still capable of pulling off incredible action sequences, nightmare-inducing villains, and engaging storylines. Children's play will typically not show complex themes and emotional nuances, but this does not necessarily mean that they are not capable of understanding or enjoying media that presents complex ideas about morality.

 

Getting back to LEGO-  I think that the stories behind the toys matters much more than the figures' aesthetic design.  That said, the figures might be an indicator of a larger problem with children's media, particularly stuff aimed at boys. It's worth looking into what kinds of emotions and values are encouraged in boys compared to girls. How many shows aimed at boys encourage kindness? How many shows aimed at girls promote courage? (In the latter case, the answer is "quite a few,  actually," looking at recent trends. It would appear that as a society, we are more focused on providing positive, balanced role models for girls than for boys). 

 

I have a lot more to say on this topic, but I'm in danger of getting rambley at the moment, so I think I'd better get to bed. To be continued... 


  • 0

3DS Friend Code: 0018-0767-4231


#37 Offline BioGio

BioGio
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Emerging Fluidic Master

  • 14-June 06
  • 1,207 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jun 25 2013 - 09:44 PM

It sounds like the author is approaching this issue from a critical viewpoint of the military-industrial complex based in capitalistic tendencies. (If that sentence scared you, I apologize. If you need more clarification of what I mean, I'll gladly edit. :P )

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#000000;]Don't worry, I'm not afraid, just a bit confused:  Do you mean that his "critical viewpoint" is "based in capitalistic tendencies," or that the military-industrial complex is so based?[/color][/font]


  • 0

dig


"You're a scientist? The proposal you make violates parsimony; it introduces extra unknowns without proof for them. One might as well say unicorns power it."


#38 Offline ShadowWolfHount

ShadowWolfHount
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Exo-Armored Toa

  • 13-October 12
  • 751 posts
  •  

Posted Jul 02 2013 - 10:00 PM

I'm sorry but this is really stupid and a waste of time, how can the face do something to kids, with Movie and Game theme LEGO they are going to have faces like that, like with Batman, do you think that Batman will ever make a smile, no but with Ironman ,Spider-man and Superman they can have a smile. Now with LEGO theme there sets have smile just look at the Lego Castle and the Lego City, they have smiles but with the criminal they are not going to have smile because the criminal are bad guys not good. Now with the LEGO Galaxy Squad they have both angry and smile face, if you look at Blue and Red Team they have angry face but with Orange and Green Team they have smile. So Lego is not doing anything bad they are putting more feelings to there minifigure so they are all not just smile but have other feelingsin there sets.


  • 0

image.php?u=47115&dateline=1334913320

___________________________________________________________

:voyanui: Find Me On :voyanui: 
Flickr 10.gif MOCpages 10.gif Youtube


#39 Offline ~Shockwave~

~Shockwave~
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Outstanding BZP Citizens
  • Emerging Fluidic Master

  • 08-March 10
  • 1,211 posts
  •   Outstanding BZPower Citizen

Posted Jul 03 2013 - 12:53 AM

Yeah. Ok. I played Halo at a young age, watched some violent movies and have had Transformers for as long as I can remember. I also have a bow and arrow in my room. Strangely enough, I'm not really violent. I think people just like to blame things because they don't want to accuse parents of being bad or neglectful. 


  • 0

fs_overall.png

3DS Freind Code: 1693-0634-1082 Name: Joey

I also have Mario Kart 7, Animal Crossing: New Leaf, Pokemon Y and Kid Icarus: Uprising

PM me to add me. 

Steam profile

Click here for the BZP Destiny Group


#40 Offline ShadowWolfHount

ShadowWolfHount
  • Premier Member
  • Premier Members
  • Exo-Armored Toa

  • 13-October 12
  • 751 posts
  •  

Posted Jul 03 2013 - 01:26 AM

Yeah. Ok. I played Halo at a young age, watched some violent movies and have had Transformers for as long as I can remember. I also have a bow and arrow in my room. Strangely enough, I'm not really violent. I think people just like to blame things because they don't want to accuse parents of being bad or neglectful. 

THANK YOU 


  • 0

image.php?u=47115&dateline=1334913320

___________________________________________________________

:voyanui: Find Me On :voyanui: 
Flickr 10.gif MOCpages 10.gif Youtube





0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users