Comic Book Movies For Kids? Check Out the LEGO DC Superheroes Collection

I was a superhero loving child, who grew up watching the likes of Superman on the big screen and Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk at home on TV. One of the biggest shames about the current renaissance in live action comic book adaptations is that they’re made for teenagers and adults – and the children who I think should be the prime audience shouldn’t be watching (ahem) the best of Marvel and DC on film or TV.

I’ve written about this before. It particularly bugs me because I really want to share my love of these characters with my 4-year-old daughter.

Cartoons are a good alternative, and a recent discovery were the animated LEGO DC Superheroes movies. I must admit, I had pretty much ignored these straight-to-video releases. But I was offered the chance to check out the series of three Justice League movies, including the latest instalment LEGO DC’s Justice League: Cosmic Clash. The previous ones are Attack of the Legion of Doom, and Justice League vs Bizzaro League.

LEGO DC’s Justice League- Cosmic Clash
The JLA as featured in ‘LEGO DC’s Justice League: Cosmic Clash

I was happily surprised by them. The quality of the animation is really good, far better than I expected from a home entertainment only release. Having recently had the misfortune to see one of the Barbie straight-to-video movies (ugh), the quality of animation – as well as everything else – is so much better.

These are light comedies, that poke a little fun at the characters (much like the LEGO Movie did). The characterisations are fun – for the most part. Superman is a naive and giddy do-gooder; Batman is constantly suspicious; Green Lantern tends to be full of himself; and Cyborg is an enthusiastic youth.

LEGO DC Superheroes JLA
It’s Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice – LEGO DC Superheroes style

But what of the female characters? Wonder Woman is a founding member of the Justice League and features prominently in all three films. While her character in the first one has an annoying tendency to make fashionista comments, she soon becomes the strong and respected hero she deserves to be.

Wonder Woman is even worshipped as a deity at one point by an all-female civilisation. In Justice League vs. Bizarro League, her ‘bizzarro’ version (Bizzara), who is supposed to be the opposite of her, made me chuckle when she proclaimed “I’m a pretty princess!”

Another prominent hero is Supergirl, who here is actually a girl – a high school cheerleader, who frequently breaks into cheers mid-battle. This is something you’ll likely either find endearing or annoying. Another Super-family character that features is Lois Lane, poking fun at her propensity to be rescued by Superman.

Supergirl cheerleader
Supergirl as a super-cheerleader

Other female characters include Saturn Girl from the Legion of Superheroes, plus villains Cheetah and Giganta (who my daughter really liked).

Superhero Movies For Kids?

These fit my desire for child-friendly superhero movies perfectly. The humour and general playful tone, mixed with decent plots, worked well. My daughter liked Wonder Woman in particular – especially when she took on Giganta – but she also enjoyed seeing the Green Lanterns (Hal Jordan was her favourite incarnation). She also liked it when the JLA played hide & seek – a current favourite game of hers.

LEGO DC’s Justice League- Cosmic Clash Green Lantern
Cosmic Clash features the Hal Jordan version of Green Lantern – my daughter’s favourite

Overall, I found these cartoons fun and engaging. Though comedies, they still don’t skimp on the action. However, in a classification system (BBFC) that rates the original Star Wars trilogy as U, the PG rating seems rather harsh. IMHO these are fine for any pre-schooler.

LEGO DC’s Attack of the Legion of Doom, Justice League vs Bizzaro League and the latest release Justice League: Cosmic Clash are all available to buy now.

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Pirate Batman riding a shark
Pirate Batman riding a shark. What’s not to love.

Copyright Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Family Fever

LEGO Star Wars – Rey’s Speeder and General Grievous Playtest plus Giveaway

With less than a month to go until the release of The Force Awakens, Star Wars continues to dominate our leisure time. As well as enjoying watching Episodes IV – VI in anticipation, checking out trailers, speculating what may happen in the new movie (my daughter already predicts that Kylo Ren will get both hands chopped off), we’re also working our way trough the six season Clone Wars animated series. So it was great to receive two terrific LEGO sets that encompassed these strands of the saga. Continue reading LEGO Star Wars – Rey’s Speeder and General Grievous Playtest plus Giveaway

Playtest and Giveaway: New LEGO Star Wars Buildable Figures

The latest LEGO Star Wars figures are a little bigger than the previously available ones! Continue reading Playtest and Giveaway: New LEGO Star Wars Buildable Figures

Review: LEGO Batman – Jokerland Set

My daughter recently declared that two of her favourite superheroes are Batman and Robin. As luck would have it, a few days later this was delivered.

We set to building it right away!

The first thing we noticed about this set is that it is almost like a series of LEGO play sets, which made it great fun to build and to play with.

The story behind ‘Jokerland’ appears to be an ordinary theme park has been taken over by the clown prince of crime and some of his villainous allies. Each of them has their own twisted theme park ride to torment our heroes.

The set has eight minifigs in total – Batman, Robin, Starfire, and Beast Boy are the heroes, while the villains are The Joker, plus his accomplices Harley Quinn, The Penguin, and Poison Ivy.
Batman, Robin, Beast Boy, Starfire, The Penguin, The Joker, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, LEGO, minifigs, minifigures,
Batman, Robin, Beast Boy, Starfire, The Penguin, The Joker, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, LEGO, minifigs, minifigures,

There are also a couple of bonus figures – a freaky clown robot and a penguin with some dynamite!

The Joker’s theme park is made up of these four main ‘attractions’:

Jokerland LEGO DC Comics Superheroes 76035 PENGUIN
The Penguin’s ‘Deadly Duckies’ – which sees Beast Boy taken prisoner

Jokerland LEGO DC Comics Superheroes 76035 Poison Ivy Starfire

Jokerland LEGO DC Comics Superheroes 76035 Harley Quinn 2
‘Harley’s Wheels of Fire’ – where she torments the boy wonder.
And of course, the Joker’s ‘Jokerland’ (with the ‘Toxic Tank’).
And of course, the Joker’s eye-catching ‘Jokerland’ (with the ‘Toxic Tank’). Not recommended if you have a fear of clowns!

My daughter and I construct these big sets in a few sessions, each one usually just one numbered of the bags these sets are divided into. That usually means we end a building session with only a part of the vehicle/set constructed.

While this set has over a thousand bricks, four of the six numbered bags contain one attraction each. We built a bag a session initially, so what was nice about this set was that each one ended with a finished attraction.

She’s only 3-years-old, and this set is recommended for 8-14, so it is pretty advanced for her age. But with a bit of guidance and encouragement (as well as patience!) from me, she eventually put together her very own Batmobile.

Overall, this set was a really fun build that was a great joint activity for us – especially on a rainy bank holiday Monday.

It has great playability when completed. Each attraction has interactive elements – The Jokerland slide into the Toxic Tank, as well as revolving eyes and tilting hat; Harley’s motorcycle launches down towards the flaming barrels; the Penguin’s Deadly Duckies turn; Poison Ivy’s ride falls suddenly to the ground when triggered; and there’s a cannon that fires cannonballs – or the Joker’s custard pie! Oh, and the Batmobile had spring loaded missiles too.

Jokerland’s also a playset – so it’s a great environment for children to create stories with the characters. We’ve had everything from Batman arriving to rescue Robin, to everyone enjoying a day trip to the theme park. Another big attraction for us was the number of female character minifigs included – even just one in a superhero set is a bonus, so getting three is fantastic. My daughter loves having more female characters to us with her LEGO.

“Everyone’s happy in Jokerland” stated my daughter. Not sure that was the Joker’s intention, but we’re very happy to have added this set to our LEGO collection.

Despite appearances :/

"Why so serious?" #jokerland

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

This giveaway has now ended, but the LEGO Batman – Jokerland set (76035) can be purchased from Amazon.

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Disclaimer: While I was not paid to write this review, we did receive this LEGO set free of charge. 

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I think it’s important for boys and girls that female characters are included in merchandise like this superhero LEGO set. What do you think?

Family Fever

Review: LEGO Star Wars Imperial Assault Carrier (75106)

The LEGO Star Wars Imperial Assault Carrier set (75106) is based on one of the Empire’s spaceships from the Star Wars Rebels TV show. It featured prominently in the finale of season 1. Continue reading Review: LEGO Star Wars Imperial Assault Carrier (75106)