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LEGO Time Cruisers Comics

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jamesster

The implication here is that LEGO named all of the characters for the US region, and then just never used the names in advertizing ever. This would explain where the Black Knight and Commander Cold come from in LEGO Racers; HVS was sent all of LEGO's info on the minifigures, including, apparently, stuff that was never publicized.

Oh goody, there actually is such a thing as a LEGO story bible of sorts, and we have no idea where to even begin looking to recover it. I don't, anyway.

Also, is that the same Tim Courtney as Tim Courtney?

That's a pretty good list, PeabodySam. A couple gaps I noticed - Max Timebuster, Catle Kids, and Exocet from Drome Racers was sometimes named Exceta (including in the video game). Though where did "Ed" from Unitron come from?

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Pereki

 

Oh goody, there actually is such a thing as a LEGO story bible of sorts, and we have no idea where to even begin looking to recover it. I don't, anyway.

Also, is that the same Tim Courtney as Tim Courtney?

That's a pretty good list, PeabodySam. A couple gaps I noticed - Max Timebuster, Catle Kids, and Exocet from Drome Racers was sometimes named Exceta (including in the video game). Though where did "Ed" from Unitron come from?

 

Haha, it probably is the same Tim. He says he goes to a Christian school in the thread, and that LinkedIn page says he graduated from Gordon, a Christian college. Neat that he was a fan before becoming Community Manager.

 

Ed is from the Adventures of the LEGO Maniac. See here.

 

EDIT: Then again, maybe it isn't the same Tim. His description of his "minifig's day at school" sounds more like that of a middle or high school than a college, so there isn't as direct of a correlation.

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Creator

While we're on this subject, here's a list of characters that I've compiled myself.  It's a little lacking - formatting looks gaudy in Notepad (copypasta'd from Word, that's why), sources aren't cited, there's no images, Chima is missing entirely, and other themes (e.g. Ninjago) may not be up-to-date - but it might be helpful to this discussion.

 

Baron von Barron is now also Baron von Thyssen? When did this happen? Oh, wait, it didn't, because Baron von Thyssen died over ten years ago. How quaint...

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/switzerland/1392498/Industrialist-art-collector-Baron-von-Thyssen-dies.html

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Pereki

Since we were talking about minifig names here, check this out. Johnny Thunder's Hungarian name was possibly Thomas Lightning.

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TalonCard

 

While we're on the topic of minifig names, check out this neat early attempt to compile a list of them.

 

Wow, that's really impressive. I didn't realize they had such a good handle on minfigure names back then. I joined rec.toys.lego just a few months later--I wish I'd found this post! I remained unaware of the LEGO Pirate books for years!

 

Major Ursa certainly sounds like a LEGO name, and it'd go right along with Commander Bear. Haaaarggah, the notion of entire lists of minifigure names circulating around the US LEGO offices in the 90s is almost too much to, er, bear.

 

Here's hoping those other Time Cruiser comics show up soon!

 

 

TC

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Fush

Don't mean to bump this topic but I found something interesting I wanted to share.

I was just looking at old LEGO catalogs on eBay, and, well, look at the catalogs:

From 1997

$(KGrHqVHJCsE7z-UF,W7BP!GTNh4Yg~~60_57.J

Shows a UFO set in the Fright Knight's world

From 1998

$(KGrHqN,!jUE65-0d316BP!GpIwK7Q~~60_57.J

Shows an Insectoids set coming out of a portal in an Egyptian tomb

Both of these resemble situations from the comic (although in the latter case it was Tim going through a portal in Egypt to the Insectoid world, but close enough)

Might just be coincidence but I thought it was interesting. Perhaps the writer of the comic took inspiration from the catalogs.

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TalonCard

That is interesting! The Fright Knights/Castle connection was hyped pretty heavily in the commercials...I wonder if a similar effort was ever planned for Adventurers/Insectoids...

 

TC

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Pereki

Since this has sort of evolved into a general discussion of old LEGO media, I'll leave this here.

 

NB3uaUT.png

 

Will, Flashfork, Rodger and Rummy(?) would appear to be the crew of the Brick Bounty! I wonder if that means that that's Broadside and de Martinet, too?

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jamesster

Holy crap. That was quite an unexpected surprise. Shut up and take my money. :D

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Ben24x7

From what I see Set #70412 is the only set revealed so far to include a girl. Unless these are all the sets and, if so, then that would be a problem.

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jamesster

Those pics have been out for a while now, Pereki embedded one of them a couple of posts ago.

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aidenpons

Oh yay. Hooray.

It’s not like we’ve never seen these sets before... I mean, an Imperial Soldiers fort being attacked by some pirates. That’s totally new. And the idea of having an octopus attack a raft is so new! We’ve only seen it in the line directly before this, so it’s a novel idea! And the pirate ship is so nice. We’ve only seen a pirate ship in every single Pirates line that Lego’s ever had, but it’s such a nice change to have one with even less cannons than normal.

 

Granted, they're not bad sets.... but this is pretty much our previous Pirates theme.

Oh well, at least it'll be a fun round of Spot The Difference. :P

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jamesster

Oh yay. Hooray.

It’s not like we’ve never seen these sets before... I mean, an Imperial Soldiers fort being attacked by some pirates. That’s totally new. And the idea of having an octopus attack a raft is so new! We’ve only seen it in the line directly before this, so it’s a novel idea! And the pirate ship is so nice. We’ve only seen a pirate ship in every single Pirates line that Lego’s ever had, but it’s such a nice change to have one with even less cannons than normal.

 

Granted, they're not bad sets.... but this is pretty much our previous Pirates theme.

Oh well, at least it'll be a fun round of Spot The Difference. :P

This is how LEGO works.

This is how LEGO has worked since 1978.

Themes and sets are invented and re-invented as generations pass on. Believe it or not, most people in Toys R Us aren't gonna be pissed off that LEGO's been making minifigure scale fire truck sets for at least 36 years. They're after a fun LEGO fire truck. Or pirate raft. Or imperial fort. Or castle. Or spaceship. Or mech. Or race car. Why on earth would a set designer write off good ideas because they were done 5 or 25 years ago?

Especially here - this line is going out of its way to pay respects to classic pirates and give both older fans and younger fans something to enjoy, and you're whining because they look familiar? Yet when they do new and unique things, we also get people whining that they're "straying away from the classics". I can't even.

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aidenpons

you're whining because they look familiar?

 

Not that they look familiar. They look identical.

 

I can honestly say I see no difference in the structure of the sets. I'm not going generically: like "the Imperials are always blue, the pirates are always red and have a ship." I'm going "the pirates have a ship with three sails with exactly the same design as before, the Imperials have a fort which is attacked by a small rowing boat and is defended with a cannon that is mounted on a small jetty outwards, there is also one treasure chest in the fort. Oh, and the raft has a crows' nest and is being attacked by an octopus."

 

And I don't want to extend this argument because I'm up against the King Of Knowing Lego Sets and he's going to punch holes in all my arguments above, saying "the design was different" and "there was a cannon mounted on the fort." :P

 

 

I'm fine with Lego reusing its ideas. I just don't see why they'd pretty much kick a line straight back up again with sets that look identical. The Fire Truck design has changed: have you looked You will have looked (:P) at the older Lego Police Stations? Sure, they always had a station and there was always a car in it, but things were different. Things like the colour, the organisation of the offices... they're different. They might not be very different, but there's something crucial that makes it different.

 

inb4 argument gets savaged by Jamie :P

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jamesster

They look identical.

exactly the same design

http://brickset.com/sets/theme-Pirates/year-2009

http://brickset.com/sets/theme-Pirates/year-2015

Okay then. Yeah, totally the exact same everything.

Go take a look at other evergreens like Castle and City and get back to me in the morning.

And I don't want to extend this argument because I'm up against the King Of Knowing Lego Sets

inb4 argument gets savaged by Jamie

8|

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TalonCard

Back on topic, I've had a bit of a break in the pre-1997 history of this comic. Kim Hagen sent me a picture of an issue of Klick Magazine. It's #1, dated October 1994. He believes that it was published bi-monthly after that.

 

http://www.brickshelf.com/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?i=6189914

 

The text isn't really ledgible (to my eyes, anyway,) but it does confirm the notion that the Time Cruisers appeared in comics long before the theme was actually released. There's a new time machine too; more Delorean-esque than the theme ended up being. Or maybe it's just shaped a little like the LEGO Delorean. :af:

 

While the Dr. Cyber and Tim characters are definitely drawn the same as their later incarnations; I'm not sure that's what they were originally called here. It could be a trick of the light, but I think Tim is called Max--which, combined with the name of the strip, would definitely indicate a relation to the Max Timebuster character from the catalogs. It remains to be seen whether Hagen was basing his idea on an in-development theme, if the theme emerged from the comic strip, or if Hagen just happened to have some similar characters and ideas that he incorporated into the theme when it was finally released.

 

So...everybody keep your eyes peeled for auctions of Klick Magazine from 1994-1997...

 

TC

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Pereki

The image isn't even public yet, but I'm already (internally) rocking as hard as this guy right here

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AfJ7LQn8kp8

 

And so it may be that Max is Tim? What a twist! It makes sense though. Hagen is hired to make a comic advertising all of the current LEGO themes in 1994. He looks at his reference material, and is struck by this Max Timebuster character that travels throughout the different LEGO worlds. He adapts Max, originally a thief running from the law, into a more relatable child protagonist while keeping the time traveling aspect. Throw in a professor and a Delorean to complete your BTTF homage and you've got Time Cruisers. Then, in 1996, when LEGO adapts the comic into a theme (which I'm going to go ahead and take as a given at this point - it feels all too logical. The infamously weird features of the minifigs, plus how very marketing-ized the theme is in comparison to the evident original idea of the comic, plus the Timebuster connection), someone decides Tim is a better name for the protagonist. Maybe the comic goes through a reboot, beginning with the two pages at the beginning of World Club issue 1 (which could easily have been borrowed from an earlier issue of Klick). In that case, it might have been Tim as a name came part and parcel with the new Timecruiser last name, and that as time went on Hagen just slipped back into Timebuster and noone caught the mistake.

 

Really looking forward to that image becoming public.

 

EDIT: figured out the url and got to the image (deeplinked here). Looks like Tim/Max and the time machine follow the design we got a peek at Given that these two pages follow basically the same story as the first two in World Club, I'm definitely leaning toward the idea of a reboot when the theme launched in 1996. Also note, no Ingo - he must've been an addition in response to the monkey in the sets.

 

And I agree, the first word bubble is pretty clearly the professor calling for 'Max.' Holy guacamole.

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jamesster

UIYkCIO.png

That time lab is neat. I like the time machine too... Once we get better images, I'd like to see some re-creations, either with physical bricks or LDD.

Not sure what to think of Tim = Max. I'm just gonna pull some MOCanon and personally declare "more alternate universe shenanigans".

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Pereki

Not sure what to think of Tim = Max. I'm just gonna pull some MOCanon and personally declare "more alternate universe shenanigans".

Although Tim basically steals a good deal of stuff from the worlds he visits, up to and including a briefcase of cash and an entire freaking freight train, just all incidentally and because Ingo is kind of a huge jerk. Maybe Tim/Max becomes a criminal as time goes on just because everyone assumes he's evil, and by the time he is an adult he is still cruising through time, trying to find his way back home, and has become infamous in the LEGO Town time period. That's kind of a fun way to look at it.

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jamesster

Not sure what to think of Tim = Max. I'm just gonna pull some MOCanon and personally declare "more alternate universe shenanigans".

Although Tim basically steals a good deal of stuff from the worlds he visits, up to and including a briefcase of cash and an entire freaking freight train, just all incidentally and because Ingo is kind of a huge jerk. Maybe Tim/Max becomes a criminal as time goes on just because everyone assumes he's evil, and by the time he is an adult he is still cruising through time, trying to find his way back home, and has become infamous in the LEGO Town time period. That's kind of a fun way to look at it.

I accept this MOCanon.

Also, slightly unrelated, but I remember Sadie once mentioning to me that Frank Madsen (artist of the Jim Spaceborn comics) drew this little catalog comic:

028.jpg

I don't have a chat log, though, so I'm going from memory - take it with a grain of salt until Sadie can confirm.

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TalonCard

I can at least confirm that Sadie told me the same thing.

I like the idea of Max being an alternate future Tim, which would help explain the apparent reboot.

I think, though, that the reboot happened because the strip was being published in new markets, not because the theme actually came out...

It seems crazy that an entire theme was developed based on obscure comic strips that no one remembered. Heck, I was online back when the sets were still in stores and no one mentioned the Timebuster comics...

TC

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aidenpons

... I get an error when trying to view those links on Page 18? Yesterday it said "THIS IMAGE IS NOT PUBLIC" and now Firefox can't even connect to it, saying "The connection was reset while the page was loading."

 

(I don't have a Brickshelf account, if that means anything)

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noghiri

... I get an error when trying to view those links on Page 18? Yesterday it said "THIS IMAGE IS NOT PUBLIC" and now Firefox can't even connect to it, saying "The connection was reset while the page was loading."

 

(I don't have a Brickshelf account, if that means anything)

I have the same issue and also don't have a Brickshelf account.

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jamesster

The errors mean exactly what they say. The image wasn't approved and public before, and now Brickshelf is down again. Just wait a bit.

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