My recent holiday was largely a 30-day journey through my own personal LEGO paradise, culminating in a harrowing trip through my favourite DC Comics set released so far -- Jokerland.
There were very few days during my vacation that I didn't take plastic bricks in hand to build wondrous things. I put together everything from the massive LEGO Creator movie theatre (which took me two days) to tiny little kits featuring space explorers and scuba divers. From LEGO originals like Chima's lion mech to licensed kits from Marvel, Jurassic World, Scooby Doo, Star Wars Rebels and The Big Bang Theory.
What I didn't get to do was go to any big tourist attractions, so I brought one home instead.
The Joker has been twisting amusement parks to suit his grotesque definition of 'amusement' for as long as I can remember. This time around he's brought some friends in the form of The Penguin, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, and like any true friend he's given them each their own deadly park attraction.
And while Batman may be wise to his nemesis' carnal carny fascination, a trio of titanic teens don't seem to have gotten the memo. Who can rescue Beast Boy, Starfire and Robin from this festival of evil?
LEGO's Jokerland set sells for $US119.99 at the LEGO Shop, and unlike other sets that sell at a smiliar price (*cough*spaceport*cough*) it's actually worth the scratch. Packed with cool play features -- each of the rides actually works -- it's the sort of set even the most "mature" collector can't help but play around with.
I'm partial to the Penguin's spinning Deadly Duckies ride myself, but there's something wonderful about Harley Quinn on a motorcycle with Robin strapped to the underside, speeding towards flaming oblivion.
And how about the Batmobile? This sleek and sexy ride is the sort of thing that would normally sell in its own set.
If there's any downside to Jokerland, it's the twirling-eyed clown head. It's not a matter of build quality or features -- it's quite solid and very inventive. No, it's the fact that I've already had nightmares about the beige-toothed monstrosity.
Despite it's variety and enormity, Jokerland is actually a pretty quick build. Each ride and set piece is contained in one or two bags, and the 200+ page instruction tome zips through construction. I put it all together in just about four hours.
Perhaps with all of that extra time more dedicated fans than I could build a nice base for the set, bringing all the parts together, tossing some trash about, maybe toss some Gotham-ish warehouses around it to set the mood.
So grab a bag, pack up the kids and drive as fast as possible in the other direction. Everyone could use a trip to Jokerland, but you only get the one.