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Hi everyone, out of two Daily Bugle sets I have built a bigger and better one, at least in my opinion. ;-) Here you can see how it turned out: What do you think of this build? Will you also build a Moc / Mod out of it or have you done it already? :)
It is no secret that Marvel is one of the most successful companies right now. From the Avengers to the X-Men and down to even the most obscure characters like Ant-Man, every one of their movies has been a big hit until now. The latest Marvel movie, Fant4stic, was released last month and while I have not seen it yet, I'm sure it's just as great as their other movies. I mean, it has the word "Fantastic" in the title after all! And being the smart business that they are, The Lego Company decided to get in on the hype early and capitalize on this movie's undoubtful success two years in advance by making a set featuring Fant4stic's main villain, Dr. Doom. Now that's what I call forward thinking! But did they do a good job with it or were they being overhasty? Let's find out! Set Number: 76005 Name: Spider-Man: Daily Bugle Showdown Theme: Marvel Super Heroes Subtheme: Ultimate Spider-Man Year of Release: 2013 Pieces: 476 Minifigs: 5 Price: $49.99 USD S@H description: The first thing that comes to mind after reading this description is: Wow, that's a lot of TMs! Anyway, here are some resource links for this set: Brickset Bricklink Rebrickable The Box Since this set is based on the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon, the box has the usual USM design with the red Marvel Super Heroes background, an illustration of Spidey in the upper right corner, and the USM logo in the lower right. As usual, there is a minifig line up in the lower left, and since this was before the terrible redesign, you can see the full body of the minifigs. I really miss this type of line up. There is quite a lot going on here: Doctor Doom attacking the Daily Bugle in his jet while simultaneously reaching for J. Jonah Jameson below with his jet's claw, Spider-Man (reluctantly) swings in to save him, while Nova fights off the Beetle. It's a pretty cool scene, even though it's not very accurate to the show. In "Beetle Mania", the episode that this set is based on, the Beetle was indeed out to kill JJJ, but it was in order to stop him from exposing his identity, not Spider-Man's (although Spidey was next on JJJ's list). And while he is a recurring villain on the show, Doctor doom had nothing to do with this plot and didn't even appear in the episode aside from a brief cameo. It's awesome that they included him anyway, though, so I'm not gonna complain. Note that the tower is so tall that it wraps around the top of the box. There, you can also see a scale reference with the Spider-Man minifig. On the back of the box, you can see the interior of the Bugle and all of its play features which there are quite a few of since this is a playset. It's all illustrated pretty well, although Lego's choice of sound effects is still a mystery to me. I don't get why they don't go for Spider-Man's signature "Fwip!" instead of "Fazzing!" and I didn't know that a breaking window made the sound "Btoom!" but I digress. Contents Inside the box you will find three instruction booklets (one smaller than the others), a comic book, a fairly large sticker sheet, five numbered bags, and two loose pieces: A white string piece and a gray 16x8 plate. There aren't really any notable pieces and nobody cares about the comic bock (no offense to the artist), so lets get right to the instructions. They are pretty straight forward and easy to follow. Some of the pages have a ghostly image of Spidey, Nova, and Dr. Doom in the top right corner which is fitting since these are all minifigs that appear in this set (which is strangely not something that can be said for many other Super Heroes instructions with this type of artwork). Minifigures As with most Super Heroes sets, most people will get this set mainly for the minifigs, so without further ado, let's talk about them. Spider-Man is the same old bootless one you get in almost every USM set. Not much to say about him. Some might complain that we don't get Spidey's alter ego Peter Parker in this set, but in the USM cartoon, MJ is actually the one who works at the Daily Bugle, not Peter. Curse the creators of this cartoon for ruining our chances of getting a new Peter Parker minifig by trying to mix things up. Next we get J. Jonah Jameson. He appeared in a Spider-Man 2 set before, but this is a complete redesign. He now has a blue suit with a red tie, a unique face print, and that combed-back hair in dark gray. This new hairpiece doesn't suit him at all and the old flat top hair was perfect for him in my opinion, so I don't know why they changed it. The good thing about this change, however, is the fact that this piece is exclusive to this set in that color. Nova on the other hand is spot-on. He comes with a new helmet mold and some nice torso printing. However, he, too, is missing his boots. TLC should have started making dual-colored legs a long time ago. Here are some reference images to compare them to. Okay, so JJJ's hair may not be completely black in the show, but I still think they should have given his minifig a black hairpiece. His suit is also not quite the right color. He rarely appears in person in the show (including the episode this set is based on) and is usually seen on screens around New York, so this is the best picture of him I could find. I guess I should be happy they included a minifig of him at all. In the episode, it was actually Mary Jane who was at the Bugle during Beetle's attack, so it would have made more sense to include her, but we got her in the Spider-copter set one year later, so that's ok. All three of them have back printing. In JJJ's case I'm using that term loosely since it is only comprised of two lines, but it's nice that they went through the trouble of adding them. Both JJJ and Nova come with angry alternate faces. It almost looks like they're trying to out-angry each other. Who do you think looks angrier? Let me know in the comments section below. Now let's talk about the bad guys. Even though he would be better off in a Fantastic Four set, it's great to finally get Victor Van Doom, one of the greatest Marvel villains ever and in comics in general. He comes with a dark green hood which was new and exclusive in that color at the time, and he is the only minifig in this set that has leg printing. Beetle is a regular minifig with wings. The metallic printing on his face and torso is pretty nice, but I wish it would have continued onto his legs as well. The Beetle looks quite accurate to his on-screen counterpart. The only thing that could have improved him is a new helmet mold with pointy eyebrows/antennae. Doctor Doom, however, looks nothing like he does in the movie. I just don't understand how Lego could have messed him up so badly. Maybe they were working off of early concept art or something. Here is a back view of Doom and Beetle. Beetle would be a pretty boring minifig if it wasn't for his wings which are awesome with their holographic texture. They are so mesmerizing, I could look at those things all day. This piece also appeared in trans. light green in the Galaxy Squad sets which came out at the same time. Here they are without their gear. As you can see, they both have back printing as well. And no, Doctor Doom does not come with an alternate facial expression, which is fine since you can't see much of his expressions due to his mask anyway. Here's a look at Dr. Doom and Nova without their headgear. Some say that Doom's face looks too cartoony, but I think it looks fine. Nova is wearing stylish goggles as a way of explaining his white eyes. It's a far better explanation than the Bat-sweatband. They did the same thing with the masked Wolverine later. Here are all the figs with their accessories. JJJ comes with a camera so that he can take "more pictures of Spider-Man!" Beetle comes with one of those overused ADU guns which is a very poor representation of his wrist-mounted blasters. I hate to say it, but even those bulky new stud shooters would have been a better representation of his weapons. Spidey comes with his usual string of webbing and Nova comes with some Iron Man style translucent studs. The weird thing is that they are red while his powers have a blue glow in the show. Doctor Doom sadly doesn't get any accessories, but who needs weapons when you have a jet with a claw and flick-fire missiles. The Build The first bag contains Spider-Man, a brick separator, and the parts to build the ground floor of the DBC building. After a quick and straight-forward build, you get this. The dumpster and street lamp are separate from the building and since the lamp post is not built onto any baseplate and is quite top-heavy, it gets knocked over pretty easily. Maybe it's meant to be that way, but I would have preferred it if you could stick it onto the baseplate of the building on which there is unfortunately not enough space to do so. As you would expect, the second bag has the parts for the first floor of the building. This is also the bag that contains Beetle. After another fairly simple build, you'll find yourself with a two story building with a spiderweb one side and a fire escape on the other. However, you have to apply three stickers during this section of the build which is never fun. Can you guess what's in bag number 3? Yup, the second floor of the building. You don't need superpowers to predict that one. Also, this bag contains Nova and Jameson. The build of this section is a bit repetitive since the second floor is mostly the same as the first and it takes slightly longer to build since you have to build the rooftop as well. Also, in addition to the two window stickers you have to apply ten 2x2 tile stickers! Trying to do this without having any of them being crooked is a real pain in the megablocks. The next bag contains Doctor Doom and the cockpit of his jet. Doom's cape is in the usual square white box and the string for the claw is folded up in a piece of tape. Here's what you get at the end of this section. Looks more like an escape pod than a jet at this point. The final bag is the smallest as it only includes the few parts needed to finish the Doom jet. Once you build the wings and tail, you stick them onto the cockpit via Technic pins and you're done. Spare Parts These are the parts that are left over after the build. There is the brick separator of course, an extra antenna, and the usual little bits and bops. What's really awesome, though, is that they give you an extra pair of Beetle's wings! Considering what a neat piece this is and that this is the only set in which it comes in trans-black make this a very welcome spare that you can use in your customs. The Finished Set Here is the complete set. The DBC building looks quite tall, especially when you count the antenna. Comparing it to a screenshot from the episode, the general look of the building is there, although there are some inaccuracies. Aside from the fact that it is obviously way down-scaled, the screens that show JJJ ranting about Spider-Man should have been hexagonal, not square, and should have wrapped around the building. However, considering how many stickers you would have had to apply if they would have made it accurate, I'm actually glad they kept the screen mercifully small. Much like Doctor Doom himself, the Doom jet didn't actually appear in the Beetle Mania episode. However, it did appear in a later episode titled "Not A Toy" in which Spider-Man plays around with Captain America's shield, accidentally drops it in Doctor Doom's Latvarian embassy and has to try to retrieve it. And yes, that episode was as godawful as it sounds. Here's a screenshot of the jet from that episode. Like with the DBC, they managed to capture the general shape of the vehicle, although it doesn't look quite as good as in the show. The color scheme is too dark and it looks kind of blockier. Let's take a closer look at the jet. There is no real way to reel the claw in unfortunately. However, there is a stud on the back of the jet that you can stick it onto. Needless to say, this is not the ideal way of storing it. I would have much preferred it if they would have attached it onto winch instead. The engines on the wings can be turned, even though they don't turn in the show, and there is a flick-fire missile on each side. Even if it's not much to look at, at least it's a very swooshable vehicle. On top of each wing there is a tile with the emblem of Latvaria. There was no such emplems on the jet in the cartoon, but they are useful pieces that make it clear whose jet it is, so I'm glad they included them. There is nothing inside the cockpit except for a seat and unless you want to ruin Dr. Doom's nice dark green cape, I wouldn't put him inside of it. They could have at least printed a control panel onto that empty 2x2 tile. Play Features Since this is a playset, let's look at all the play features it has to offer. Like all playsets, the building is open in the back so you can play inside. On the ground floor, there is a potted plant and... nothing else. Seriously? Is this all they could come up with for this floor? They could have included a security desk, a lounge, a second plant, or anything else! As it is, it's just a boring empty lobby. The first floor is a bit more interesting. There is a safe, a swiveling chair, and a pin board with various pictures of Spider-Man. There is one tile that reads: "The true identity of Spider-Man" which is supposedly what the villains are after. I wonder how Jameson got this information in the first place. Speaking of Jameson, the second floor is devoted to his office where he can sit and yell at his non-present employees, demanding "more pictures of Spider-Man!" It also has a swiveling chair as well as a desk with a lamp and a computer. There is a Technic beam connecting his desk with the ceiling of the first floor which you can remove in order to take off the upper half of the building, but it's difficult to do, so I don't recommend it. As you may have noticed in the picture above, there are a few red pegs sticking out of the building. These are for triggering the play features. Most of them are on the roof. There is one on what looks like an air conditioning unit. If you place Spider-Man holding is web-string on the jumper plate in front of it and push the peg, Spidey goes bungee-jumping off the building. Wee! There is also one that sticks out of the side of the building which when pulled triggers a trap door. The third red peg on the roof can be used to pop off the DBC sign. Why is it called the DBC, you ask? It stands for Daily Bugle Communications since in this version of Spider-Man, the Daily Bugle is not only a newspaper, but a news TV station as well, one that promotes its own highly biased views. So basically the Fox News of the Marvel universe. I guess if you're an old school Spider-Man fan, you could just leave off the "C" and have it just stand for Daily Bugle. The sign above the main entrance wont be so easily modified however. There is also a peg between the first and second floor which when pushed pops out one of the windows on the first floor. The safe is only attached to a couple of jumper plates and has some jumper plates on top of it as well, so you can easily attach the Doom jet's claw to it and rip it out of the building as seen on the back of the box. There are also some SNOT bricks on the corners of the building that you can attach spiderwebs or Spidey himself onto for some wall-crawling and webslinging action. This is not so much a play feature as it is just a feature, but as I mentioned earlier, there is a fire escape on the left side of the building. This was a neat idea as it helps it feel like a building in New York City, but it is executed very poorly. There is no hole big enough for the minifigs to climb down through, so they would have to climb down the ladders from the outside which makes no sense. No wonder Spider-Man always needs to rescue people from burning buildings. There is one more play feature in the form of the dumpster. You can open the lid, put a minifig inside, and make them jump by hitting a tab in the back. Remember, this is before the introduction of super jumpers, but nevertheless it's a pretty strange place to launch minifigs out of. I guess even Super Heroes like to do some dumpster diving. You don't think this was funny? No? Well, me neither, but that's the type of humor that this show loves to use. Sigh. Anyway, let's get on to the ratings. Ratings Design: 2/5 - The set looks ok. Despite many inaccuracies, the DBC building and the jet somewhat resemble their on-screen counterparts and don't look too bad, but they definitely could be better. Build: 1/5 - A mostly unchallenging and repetitive build with an attrocious amount of stickers. Minifigs: 4/5 - Definitely the strongest point of the set. Some of the figs could be better, but four out of five of them are exclusive to this set. Doctor Doom is easily the best and probably the most desirable one - unless the Fant4stic movie portraits him so badly that nobody will be interested in him, but that's impossible. Playability: 4/5 - As you would expect from a playset, the playability is quite high, although I still feel like there could have been more. Parts: 3/5 - Not many rare parts. If you're looking for parts for building your own skyscraper with tan walls and lots of doors and windows though, this set is for you. Price: 3/5 - At 476 parts for $50, this set is a bit pricey, but it is somewhat justified by all the large window and wall pieces. Overall: 3/5 - This set is mediocre at best. Playsets are always a good choice for Spider-Man sets since they give Spidey something to swing from, but unfortunately they are rarely pulled off well. The jet is blocky, the building is bare-bones, and the price feels too high. The only reason to get this set are the four exclusive minifigs. This set was discontinued early this year, but if you still see it on clearance somewhere, go ahead and get one for the minifigs and parts, or buy multiples and use the parts to build a better DBC building. I hope you enjoyed this review. It is part of the Reviewers Academy's 7th Anniversary. We're not doing a big celebration this year due to other commitments, but look out for more reviews with the 7th Anniversary banner soon. Now, if you'll excuse me, I am off to see Fant4stic. I hope it's as fantastic as it promises to be! (2 hours later) I was wrong! I was horribly, horribly wrong!
Hi. Thought I'd shove up my very first MOC / MOD. It's heavily influenced by the Daily Bugle and I did it as an exercise to see if I was capable of performing the strange mathematics / engineering / voodoo necessary to wrangle a modular out of an existing set. I chose to do a news building first as I have a (hardly updated) blog that mirrors the 'LEGO NEWS' 2x2 tile in terms of design, so making the office in which the blog is written added to the fun. Inside is a bit sparse to be frank - the bottom floor is supposed to be a chilled, corporate looking, swish lobby in which members of the public can grab a coffee and be interviewed for the paper. A flight of stairs leads to the white walled workhouse, in which the poorly paid staff slave away. Overlooking this is a mezzanine level, where the editor in chief gets to bark at his staff from above. A ladder leads from there onto the split level roof, just in case the place bursts into flames or whatnot! (the place is, after all, a hotbed of activity). I did have a better picture of the front of the building but the windows were filthy... lol I'll find some better photos if there's any interest in the project. Overall, it was great fun to do and I'm now hooked on making modulars. PS - hope I've got the posting of images correct in terms of netiquette here... Lego News Building - Front by Nova_Amiko, on Flickr Lego News Building - Rear by Nova_Amiko, on Flickr