KielDaMan

REVIEW: 3932 - Andrea's Stage

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  1. 1. How do you rate this set?

    • 5 - Celine Dion (Very Good)
      0
    • 4 - Alicia Keys (Good)
      1
    • 3 - Taylor Swift (Average)
      1
    • 2 - Lady Gaga (Fair)
      0
    • 1 - Britney Spears (Poor)
      0

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17 posts in this topic

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Name: Andrea's Stage

Number: 3932

Theme: Friends

Year: 2012

Pieces: 87

Figures: 1

Price: $9.99 | £9.99

Links: Brickset | Bricklink | Peeron

The Box

Front

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As the musically-talented one among the Friends characters, Andrea is prominently featured in front of the box displaying all the components of the set - the stage, platform with mic, grand piano, and a radio. The box has the standard Friends artwork, but one thing that is different from the smaller impulse sets is the Andrea figure shown at the lower right corner. A bit "redundant" if you ask me seeing two Andrea figures beside each other, though I guess the inset Andrea with her name below is meant to "introduce her" to potential girl kid buyers who don't know anything about LEGO Friends. Instant connection to the kids perhaps? "Oh mommy, I wanna buy Andrea, pwease?"

Back

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As with the other small Friends sets, the back shows the close-up shot of our dear Friend Andrea, along with three panels depicting the playability features offered by the set - taking centerstage, singing in the platform, and playing the piano. The other Friends characters together with the similarly-sized sets they appear in are also lined-up below, just a simple reminder that "you could collect Andrea's Friends" if you'd like for her to have company. :wink:

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Like most sets, the lone figure of the set is shown in the 1:1 section at the top of the box (as opposed to the "representative builds" in the impulse sets)

The Contents

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This is what will greet you once you unload the contents of the box - two bags of our precious LEGO, a folded instruction booklet, and a loose black 4x12 plate (which always makes me wonder: Is there any particular reason why such plate pieces are loose, not only in this set but for others as well, considering they could easily fit in either bag? :look:)

The Instruction Booklet

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The instruction booklet features the same outwork as the box, minus the age range and the inset Andrea figure.

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Like what I've pointed out in my previous review, the instructions are very much readable and easy to understand with a light purple backdrop accentuated by those cute and subtle curvish-butterflyish-and other girly prints in the corners.

The Bagged Contents

The are two unnumbered bags of LEGO pieces in this set, here's the first one:

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...which gives us these parts:

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These comprise the large pieces of the sets. Seeing a nice assortment magenta, medium lavender, and dark purple accompanied by the usual black, white, and red is very soothing to my eyes. :cry_happy: Though I don't understand why Andrea's legs and hair are included here instead of being packed together with the head and torso in the other bag.

Here's the second bag:

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...which contains the smaller pieces of the set:

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As most of you by now know that the torso and legs of the Friends doll-figures are separately packed, but interestingly it seems they always come in different types of packing. Both of Andrea's legs and torso is packed in a mini plastic bag different to the candy wrapper-like packaging of Stephanie and Emma in their respective impulse sets (as I've highlighted in my previous review)

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Pieces of Interest

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Even if this is just a small set, I'm delighted to see two printed parts: the 2x4 tile with Andrea's name and the 1x4 tile for the radio. Now if TLG can do this for Friends, why not for similarly-sized Star Wars sets (and for other themes as well) right? I also very much welcome these new (at least for me) colors in my parts collection: medium lavender, dark purple, magenta, bright pink, and bright light yellow.

The Figure

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Ladies and gentlemen, meet our talented young teen diva - Andrea!

Obviously, the first thing that you'd notice about her doll figure is the darker-colored skin compared to the other Friends characters. This is probably meant to reach to wider market of kid girl customers. I think it's a good idea with noble intentions to represent as much "racial lineage" as possible, but it does present some limitations in the playability, which I'll highlight later. Back to the figure, Andrea's hair is curly and very textured and like all of the Friends characters is also made up of a slightly soft "plastic rubber" material. Andrea has green eyes, pink lips, and wears a lime green top with some musical notes prints to match her musical personality. She has a pair of white "3/4 pants" and pink slip-ons to complete her get-up, whose overall look really complements her "sun-tanned" skin very well.

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Ok you could cover your eyes now, as KDM once again lends her grossly outdated haircut, this time to Andrea. Just showing the compatibility of Friends and standard minifig hairpieces...

Speaking of hairpieces, one could switch hairpieces with the other Friends characters to give Andrea different looks:

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However, as I mentioned earlier, her dark-colored skin somehow presents a limitation in mix-and-matching possibilities with other Friends figure parts, as shown by these examples:

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So as it is now, the only ways to give Andrea a new look is by giving her a) a different hairpiece, b) putting some accessories on her or c) getting the "other/standard Andrea outfit".

The Build

As a relatively small set, the build is expectedly fast and eaay-to-do. There are only four "mini-builds" in this set, these are:

Radio/Music Player

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Where will Andrea play her favorite CDs without her music player right? A simple 4-piece red gadget accentuated by the use of that nicely printed 1x4 tile. But honestly they couldn't they just have put the radio boom box from the CMS figs right?

Mini-Platform with Microphone Stand

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Yep, at least that's best description I could give it. The dark purple-white combo and the use of the quarter circle plates really works for me, on top of the three bottom spotlights which I find as quite clever details.

The Stage

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Simple yet effective. The colors used combine very well with each other, not over-the-top and just about the right combination to give the stage a distinct "look and personality". The curtains, side light dishes, and Andrea's name give the stage a proper amount of detailing.

Grand Piano

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Admittedly, I've seen better brick-built grand pianos before, but they usually employ illegal building techniques and/or comprise of too many pieces and as such, are not suitable for normal sets. This set's grand piano, for its intended purpose, is quite decent IMO. The overall shape, color, and detailing is there, and it even has glass/goblet (with no water!) reserved for the pianist and a mic holder at the side.

The Completed Build

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Here's the complete set-up, and I really think the individual elements fully represent Andrea's musical personality and provides good "role-playing" playability for the kids.

Leftover Parts

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Extra mic!

The Set at Play

Introducing Heartlake's newest singing sensation... Andrea!

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Andrea with extra-long music player and singing to her heart's content...

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Andrea channeling her "Inner

" behind the piano keyboard...

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_______________________

Conclusion

Design: 9/10 - Like I previously stated, the whole set-up effectively brings out the musical personality of Andrea, with each individual mini-build designed with a specific purpose to highlight Andrea's musical talents.

Parts: 10/10 - With the last three Friends sets that I've brought, I've come to love all the bright candy colors of this theme. This set is no exception, it has six "rare" colors that I previously didn't have and the printed pieces get a star on my book.

Figures: 9/10: I love the unique look of Andrea, I think her having a different colored skin compared to her other "Friends" gives her an outstanding personality figure-wise. However, this "difference" also limits the mix-&-matching possibilities with other doll figure parts, so I can't give the figure a perfect score.

Build 8/10: Not challenging at all, but the set is meant for FUN right?

Playability 9/10: Four playable scenarios (listen to music player, take center-stage, sing on the mini platform, play the piano) for an 80-piece set? Not bad IMO.

Price 9/10: $10 ain't much, but I didn't give the full rating since it only has one figure. Getting the two impulse sets for $5 will give you two figures plus the same number of parts. If only there was an Andrea impulse set.

Overall: 94%

Final Thoughts:

Seeing as this is the smallest set to get the Andrea figure, I gave it a shot, and the other parts and elements are simply added bonus. So if you are simply looking to get the Andrea to complete your Friends characters, this is the perfect way to get her figure inexpensively.

Once again, thanks for taking the time to read this review! If you haven't checked it out yet, you could see my Double Review on 3930 - Stephanie's Outdoor Bakery and 3931 - Emma's Splash Pool HERE. 'Til the next "Friendscapade" of KDM!

Parting Shots:

Three's a Company...

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but Four's better...

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Serenading the Ladies...

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Now to go back to the desert hole before I get fed to the Rock God IMHOTEP! :snicker::grin:

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Thanks for another Friend's review 'Kiel', this is becoming your second favourite theme (your first is SW) eh ? :wink:

I have been told that this set is meant to be the big seller by one retailer I have spoken to. :classic:

Is that a CD boom box....more like a mini-disc boom box, would have been better with an iPod docking station and speakers. :wink:

The stage is nice build, I like the piano the most. :classic:

Brick On Play On Review On 'Kiel' ! :grin:

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Well darn, I've also done a review of this set just last night! But I'll say what I've said in that one; this is one of the weaker sets in the line-up IMO, but the Andrea minidoll and some of the odd-coloured parts makes it worth getting one. Funnily enough I'd also picked up on the Alicia Keys reference.

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this is becoming your second favourite theme (your first is SW) eh ? :wink:

Surprisingly it is. :grin: Not until the LOTR wave comes...

I have been told that this set is meant to be the big seller by one retailer I have spoken to. :classic:

Interesting, but judging from the lukewarm attention it has been getting in terms of lack of reviews (it is only now that SilentMode and I made reviews) I was beginning to think that nobody loves poor Andrea. :cry_sad:

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The empty glass on the piano for collecting tips is a nice detail.

While it is one of the weaker Friends sets, it does have a lot of potential for storytelling.

This set looks like a lot of fun for little girls to live out their "Heartlake Idol" reality TV fantasies. I can picture it now. Peter sings a horrible rendition of Beyonce's "Single Ladies". Olivia, Andrea, and Stephanie don't hold back the harsh criticisms. Peter storms out of the room while holding onto delusional visions of becoming a singing sensation.

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This set is very nicely designed. The piano, the stage with microphone and lights, the proscenium arch and curtains... all of it is very nice. My only criticism is that it would have been nice if these various aspects had been connected somehow or at least able to be lined up with one another. As it is, the stage the mic is on has a differently-colored base than the proscenium arch, and stands high above that base or the piano (which has no base). I suppose it is meant to be interpreted as a platform on the stage rather than a part of the stage itself, though. :look:

Great review! This set is yet another demonstration of a Friends scenario that wouldn't have worked nearly as well as a City set. And at the same time, I hope some of the techniques here make their way into other LEGO themes somehow, perhaps in the form of a modular concert hall with orchestra pit! :grin:

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Price 9/10: $20 ain't much, but I didn't give the full rating since it only has one figure. Getting the two impulse sets for $10-12 will give you two figures plus the same number of parts. If only there was an Andrea impulse set.

Around here, this set is selling for $10 and IS the Andrea impulse set. where did you purchase it?

ETA: Do you mean the $6 sets as the impulse sets?

Edited by Sarah

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Around here, this set is selling for $10 and IS the Andrea impulse set. where did you purchase it?

:wall: Oh you're right, that is the Singapore Dollar price, I forgot to convert, my mistake! This set is US$10 (I bought it at SG$20).

ETA: Do you mean the $6 sets as the impulse sets?

These two.

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Thanks for showing us this set. Andrea is really a cool character; we love her darker skin and curly hair. Very nicely done. Hope they bring out more color variations so everyone can find a Friend with their skin color. I guess this calls for an Asian and an African next.

The parts look great together once this is built, and I love this set. Future singing stars shoud, too!

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While this is a very nice review, I must take issue with your rating system - Taylor Swift clearly belongs at the very bottom of the list. :laugh:

I'm glad this set is out there - I've been wanting LEGO to come out with more music-oriented sets since we started getting musician CMFs (can't wait to get that Series 7 glam rocker on this stage).

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However, as I mentioned earlier, her dark-colored skin somehow presents a limitation in mix-and-matching possibilities with other Friends figure parts, as shown by these examples:

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So as it is now, the only ways to give Andrea a new look is by giving her a) a different hairpiece, b) putting some accessories on her or c) getting the "other/standard Andrea outfit".

Actually, if I'm not mistaken, Andrea's beautiful skin color is the same as Sarah's in the Butterfly Beauty Shop. It's really hard to tell from the online pics, and I haven't seen the beauty shop in person, but it does look like they match. So, while the possibilities are still limited, there are SOME mix-and-match options for her.

EDIT TO ADD: I just noticed your rating system. Celine Dion better than Alicia Keys? Not in my world.

Edited by Gryphon Ink

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Actually, if I'm not mistaken, Andrea's beautiful skin color is the same as Sarah's in the Butterfly Beauty Shop. It's really hard to tell from the online pics, and I haven't seen the beauty shop in person, but it does look like they match. So, while the possibilities are still limited, there are SOME mix-and-match options for her.

Thanks for pointing that out, I never thought about Sarah. After a quick look in BL, Andrea and Sarah do indeed have the same skin color tone - Medium Dark Flesh:

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Good call, that's very observant of you! :thumbup: So this somehow increases the mix-and-match possibilities for Andrea, but still less than what can be achieved using flesh-colored doll figure parts of the other Friends characters.

While this is a very nice review, I must take issue with your rating system - Taylor Swift clearly belongs at the very bottom of the list. :laugh:

EDIT TO ADD: I just noticed your rating system. Celine Dion better than Alicia Keys? Not in my world.

Ha, I knew the "singer rating system" will get some complaints eventually. :laugh: It was just a matter of personal preference by the reviewer, and not meant to be taken as a fact. :grin:

@Banjo, really? Britney the freakin' lip-syncer better than Grammy-award winning musical artist/composer/singer Taylor Swift? :tongue:

Here's a song for you:

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I stand by my statement. My ranking system would probably be more like:

5. Kathleen Hanna

4. Janelle Monáe

3. Lady Gaga

2. Rebecca Black

1. Taylor Swift

That's right. Rebecca freaking Black over Taylor Swift. :devil:

Edited by Tragic Banjo

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Oh dear, we already got the black diva...=D

I kind of like the design of the set, the piano looks decent and the stage isn't half bad but is it just me or is that boxart not very flattering to the character? The Andrea figure sure looks a lot better than how she appears on the box...=(

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but is it just me or is that boxart not very flattering to the character? The Andrea figure sure looks a lot better than how she appears on the box...=(

It might just be because of too much 'lighting effects' on the boxart. While I personally don't find it 'unflattering to the character' I agree that the Andrea figure looks much better IRL than her depiction in the boxart (the same can be said for other minifigures - seeing is believing).

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