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Opinions on 2009


kuhrii
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Back in 2009 i was a stubborn kid that didn't like how Bionicle shifted to a whole nother planet and away from the characters and lore I'd grown attached to, so i stopped paying attention to canon after that point. Well, now I'm a much more open minded adult and im curious what the general consensus is for this year, set-wise and story-wise. Just by glancing at sets, i think they look nice as individuals but there doesn't seem to be any team cohesion like the previous years (Read: I have no idea who the good and bad guys are lol)

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I will attempt to summarize the fan view of the sets and story:

The sets: 2009 was a step up from 2008. While it retains many of the weaknesses of '08 (the frail joints and overreliance on the  Inika build specifically) the '09 sets saw a return to the elemental motif that characterized early BIONICLE but was basically abandoned in '06. You could easy tell who the ice characters or fire characters were at first glance, even in black and white. This gave the sets a character highly reminiscent of 2001. The large sets of that year were Tuma and Fero & Skirmix (fairly forgettable) and Titan Mata Nui (a poorly-designed, gap-filled mess, but the only way to get the gold Ignika). The vehicles were the high point of the year, continuing the well-received shift to advanced Technic-built vehicles began the previous year.

The story: again, a mixed bag. In some ways, 2009 was darker and grittier than previous years, even the grimdark chain-link-fence year of 2006. There were no elemental or mask powers, making the whole thing seem a bit more grounded in reality. The setup was bizarre, too--LEGO gladiators? Some people thought the post-apocalyptic desert setting was boring, others noticed it was a good opportunity to explore some themes that BIONICLE's more fantastical original state could not. Specifically, 2009 pushed a sense of resignation to a bland and unrewarding life more than any other year. The early half of the year existed to ask questions that Mata Nui's arrival in the latter half would answer, and some story threads (like The Crossing) were quite engaging. Unfortunately, the year climaxed in The Legend Reborn, a film that doubled down on the kid-friendly goofiness and failed to fully capitalize on the atmosphere set by the rest of the year. Worsening the situation, 2009 was meant to be the start of a three-year arc much like the Ignition arc, which was unceremoniously cut short as everything planned afterward was awkwardly crammed into the Journey's End book and Mata Nui Saga of 2010. The worst part of the 2009 story was that it wasn't a full story, it was only an introduction to something that may well have been game-changing.

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I wasn't super enthusiastic about it taking place on another world with totally new characters, but it didn't take me long to get used to it. The story was just okay I guess; the comics were pretty average, but TLR was pretty bad lol.

As far as sets go, I liked the first wave of Glatorian much better than the second wave, but overall I enjoyed most of them. 

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Boy, 2009 was a good year because it had Bionicle: The Legend Reborn. I missed the Toa and others from the Matoran Universe when the 2009 storyline happened, but it’s nice to learn about where did the Great Spirit Mata Nui and the Matoran Universe come from (according to the 2001 storyline, it is said that Mata Nui came from “paradise”, which is Spherus Magna). It was interesting that instead of opposing teams, there are tribes who fight each other to get what scarce resources do they want. I love the idea of an arena between warriors. To be honest, Bara Magna parallels MU because of many similarities, like Glatorian being human-based counterparts to Toa (they may be space aliens, but they don’t have powers), Agori to Matoran, Tuma to Makuta Teridax, and Skrall to Skakdi. Plus, this is where Mata Nui shows his personality. He learned to care about people that he is friends with. It’s basically like The Lion King, Marvel’s Thor, and Black Panther. It’s good to have variety when we go from one world to another. 
 

I love the variety of colors to represent the tribes. The designs on the weapons and helmets are very cool. I always remember their Iron Man-like faces, which Hero Factory used, and that always makes HF looks like a part of Bionicle G1 (I believe it is most likely it because of that, despite Greg Farshtey not admitting it because the themes aren’t currently running now. People, even including some articles, have been treating HF as a part of Bionicle G1, anyway). It id also nice that real hands have been introduced (four-fingered before five-fingered in 2011). I also love the Thornax Launchers. True, there are brittle joints and sockets, but hey. 

I love Michael Dorn in the movie. Also, love the set accuracies, despite the laziness of graphics in some parts. Wished there could have been more action, too. Anyway, the movie showed that Lego could make better Bionicle movies, and I was looking forward for two more after TLR, but sadly, they never came to be because Lego selfishly cancelled Bionicle in 2010 and underestimated its potential. That was tragically traumatic.


 

 

I like Lego, Bionicle, and Hero Factory!:)

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8 hours ago, Sir Kohran said:

 

 

It wasn't selfish, they had good reasons.

Counter argument though, They felt like their sales were down among their demographic (6-12 y/os) and refused to adapt with their market. They could have found easy success and sales by learning to market to older individuals (which they finally figured out over 10 years later). However, I do understand the sentiment that LEGO was trying to push in a different direction away from complicated stories and adult marketing. 

I believe the feeling of "selfishness" comes from the feeling that Lego only agreed to Bionicle for the needed profits and as soon as they were financially stable abandoned the Bionicle name. This abandonment appears to come from the stance that Bionicle was too mature for younger generations, and that the constraction system was not marketable in this way, something that many members of the company had felt since the inception of Bionicle. It felt like Lego told us in 2010, "your interest in our brand doesn't matter. You aren't 12". 

Perhaps if we had reached this Lego renaissance of adult branding in 2009, Bionicle may have remained with us. However, we did not, and this has led to most of the animosity that plagues our relations with Lego to this day. 

:m: :a: :x:    :n: :u: :i:

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8 hours ago, fabSheers said:

"your interest in our brand doesn't matter. You aren't 12". 

and my response to that was; "yeah thanks for that, Lego! screw you!" -_- 

 

as for my two cents on 2009; i thought it was odd yet awesome at the same time! the story was great, although there were flaws (i guess) but overall the story for '09 was pretty interesting! the sets were awesome! they all had fun and interesting builds to them (especially the vehicles), despite the socket joints splitting/breaking i had fun collecting most of the sets ("most", meaning there were sets i never got for whatever reason)! i will say that i never ot the Toa Mata Nui set and i have been wanting that set FOR YEARS (and i still want it)!! seriously, man! i cannot find Toa Mata Nui anywhere on Ebay for a price i deem acceptable! Amazon is no help either and i refuse to look at places like Bricklink, Etsy, AliExpress, etc. etc.! (someone please help!) i mean, seriously! good Lord, God almighty! grr. lol :D 

the books i never finished collecting but what books i did collect/read i enjoyed! and i plan on ordering the remaining books throughout this year (2021)! i do have a spare copy of "Raid On Vulcanus" if anyone is interested! :) 

also, ya'll need to quit hating on TLR because people who hate TLR sicken me! it was a bit corny here and there but i thought the film was awesome! Michael Dorn as Mata Nui was a decision that remains one of the best! i do not care if Kiina sounds like a peppy tsundere (like Asuka from NGE) i enjoyed watching her on screen! i think the biggest takeaway for many fans is that TLR was way more comedic in nature unlike the Miramax Bionicle trilogy which were more serious and foreboding yet had a little humor here and there! yes the spinning bits on the characters were annoying but i am able to ignore them and enjoy the movie (unlike some folks i know)! so yeah! TLR was, and still is, an awesome Bionicle film! it may not be the best but it's still enjoyable in my book! i love it! 10 out of 10! :D 

overall; 2009 wasn't the best year for Bionicle Gen1 (2001 is the best! don't argue with me!), but it is still rather interesting to see the Bionicle lore expand beyond the Matoran Universe! some folks may be salty over it, BUT i think those folks are a small minority! i mean, at least it's better than Gen2, am i right? (ah, sarcasm! you continue to exist even in my posts online! lol) he he! :P 

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hi, local 2009 apologist here to weigh in on the subject.  like i said in another thread, 2009 wasn't a bad year; the saga it started just wasn't given as much time as the matoran universe saga to develop.

the story started answering some of the long-standing questions of past arcs and started laying out some really cool new ones, like why the agori/glatorian were so suspiciously similar to the matoran, or where the prototype robot that showed up at the very end came from.  and the world of bara magna held the intrigue necessary to tell these stories; sure, it was a bit barebones, but that added to the mystery and made it feel like there was a lot more to find out.  plus, post-apocalypse desert setting?  what a lovely day.

the character beats took some refreshingly new directions, like ackar being a supporting protagonist and malum becoming essentially a side character in an era where the fire characters hogged the spotlight, kiina and berix being the enthusiastic and goofy ones instead of the traditional air-affiliated characters, or metus being the traitor- that one genuinely floored me as a kid.  shout out to perditus, though, for being the absolute king of blank slates; he can be almost anything i want him to be now.

and set-wise, the new pieces were designed well, fixing a lot of the problems that 2008's sets had, and combined to make each character really stand out visually.  the character and set design of 2009 is actually one of my favorites out of either of bionicle's runs.

i actually don't think the legend reborn was that bad.  its visual style was great (minus the teeth), and the voice acting was distinct and expressive.  if anything, it felt like they were trying to cram too much story into a single movie.  it should have been told instead by a longer series of books/comics than what we ended up getting, like the chronicles/adventures/legends series before.

tl;dr i like 2009.

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