Reviews with Pizzazz: Bionicle 2015 is Officially Canceled by Lego

Boss-Bot covers the recent cancellation of Bionicle 2015:

To much widespread disappointment across the Bionicle community, Lego has officially given the 2015 reboot of the franchise the axe.  This is incredibly disappointing.  I can’t stop using that word: disappointing.  Bionicle was and is a huge part of my life, personally.  I got my first set of Mata Lewa back in 2001 at a local carnival.  I was a fan of the original run of the franchise.  That being said, the Glatorian years definitely were a turn off, but when the STARS were released in 2010, I was devastated that the line had been canceled.  When rumors of the line surfaced in the summer of 2014, I was so excited.  I relied on Target and Toys R Us who often put the sets out a few days or weeks before the official release date to provide me with my first sets of each wave of the reboot.  But, enough of my story.

The official reason of the reboot’s cancellation according to Lego’s official Twitter page is that it was cut for financial reasons.  With mixed reports of the line’s sales, it could be interpreted that it ended because it did not sell enough.  If this is the case, it sadly makes a lot of sense.  Aside from the commercials in late 2014 and early 2015 for the initial relaunch of the line, Bionicle Generation 2 never saw much promotion.  Thankfully, the reboot had several books and graphic novels, as well as convention and other event exclusive masks in 2015; not to mention the four episode Netflix series.  But Hero Factory, I shudder writing this, had an animated series on Nicktoons with a much longer run than Netflix’s Journey to One Bionicle series.  Even then, this Netflix series was barely advertised.  The main reason Bionicle 2015 did not sell well, if that is the case, is because it seems Lego did not try to promote it.  The logical assumption is that Lego expected such a previously successful theme, which essentially saved the Lego Company in the early 2000’s, to do well on its own.  While old fans from those years were most likely a good factor of Generation 2’s sales, the entire concept of attracting a new generation was ignored.  Rather than relying on social media activity, Lego needed to do more television spots and promotion to make the reboot succeed.  Bionicle’s first run from 2001-2010 was unique for using online promotion and websites especially in the early years, as the connection between toys and the internet was rare.  Bionicle was groundbreaking in using the internet to advertise and support the line; but in this new generation, nearly every toy line does.  Relying on social media and the internet to market is no longer unique.  The fact that Lego dropped the ball advertising for the relaunch sadly sealed the line’s fate.

I wish Lego didn’t cancel the line before the planned 2017 conclusion to the current story.  In 2015, it was confirmed the story would last three years, through 2017.  This means that an entire year of planned story has been scrapped.  The ideas of the Mask of Time and the potential connection between the Generation 2 and Generation 1 universe are apparently never to surface.  What truly does not make sense to me is that only a few days before today’s cancellation, Lego announced a Bionicle Makuta building contest; they even showed off models of Makuta.  I do not understand why Lego would show off the Journey to One Makuta set, if it will not see the light of day.  All in all, this news is incredibly disappointing.  I sincerely hope Lego considers sharing the rest of the potential 2017 story as well as the instructions for the Makuta sets shown off in the contest video.  Considering Bionicle was brought back once, I am sure somewhere down the line we’ll see it again.  Remember, after Transformers Generation 1 ended Hasbro launched Transformers Generation 2.  Transformers Generation 2 bombed and the franchise was thought to be buried.  But, only a few years later, Beast Wars Transformers was released and the franchise was revived for years to come.  I must thank Lego for relaunching Bionicle in 2015 and giving fans memories and a happiness that will not die.  To conclude, in the words of South Park’s loveable Butter, “’Well yeah, and I’m sad, but at the same time I’m really happy that something could make me feel that sad. It’s like, it makes me feel alive, you know? It makes me feel human. And the only way I could feel this sad now is if I felt somethin’ really good before. So I have to take the bad with the good, so I guess what I’m feelin’ is like a, beautiful sadness.’”

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Review with Pizzazz

First off, thanks for checking out our blog. Boss-Bot here, with an introduction to my posts.  While Bee is more into crafting, I’ll be posting mainly toy, movie, and even some comic reviews while I’m here.

Review with Pizzazz: Tahu: The Master of Fire (2015)

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Finally, the prayers of countless fans across the world were answered this past January: Lego brought the Bionicle franchise back to life. Many, including myself were fairly (to say the least…) upset by the franchise’s ending around 2009/2010. I can’t say I was a fan of the Glatorian series myself, but that’s a post for another day. Today we have a quick review of one of the best sets of the 2015 winter wave of Bionicle sets: Tahu.

Tahu; most of you probably remember him as the “fire guy” or you know, the red one. Tahu is a fairly big set and will set you back anywhere from $19-$25, depending on where you purchase him. Is he worth the cost? Here’s my take on him:

Pros:

  • Lots of good looking translucent red parts
  • The new piston add-ons are very cool and certainly capture the essence of G1 Bionicle
  • The gearbox allows posing and function, something we have not seen in Bionicle before
  • The mask is a good mixture of the Mata and Nuva versions, with a touch of originality
  • CCBS parts seem to be sturdy and noticeably less fragile than the last few waves of G1 Bionicle parts were
  • A solid, fun build

Cons:

  • Only a few piston pieces (4) are included in the set
  • The mask pop-off function is neat, but often can often unintentionally knock the mask off

Those are all the negatives I can think of. Tahu is a very solid set and if you haven’t yet gotten him, there’s no doubt that you should. Tahu has a fun and interesting build (especially his new gearbox). I have to say, I’m impressed with the new 2015 line. CCBS can be labeled as the “Hero Factory” system, but it hasn’t shined in any official builds up until now, in my opinion. CCBS seems to be a great system when used right and boy, is Bionicle using it right.

*To note, in the picture, Tahu has the translucent Mask of Fire from the Hero Pack promotion, it is not included in the Master of Fire set.

Be on the lookout for the summer wave of the Skull Villains, which should be hitting shelves in North America on August 1st!