With a new range of LEGO Jurassic Park sets revealed to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the film, Blocks is taking a look at the dino-tastic references…
‘Welcome to Jurassic Park,’ John Hammond enthused as the sweeping score for the movie reached its triumphant crescendo. It is an iconic scene that lives rent free in fans’ minds, introducing the dinosaur inhabitants of the park onto the big screen. Decades later the CGI and real-life animatronics still stand up to the test of time, so the dinosaurs look just as good as they did 65 million years ago. Even if most of the species were from the Cretaceous…
With 76957 Velociraptor Escape, 76958 Dilophosaurus Ambush, 76959 Triceratops Research, 75960 Brachiosaurus Discovery, and 75961 Visitor Center: T. rex & Raptor Attack sparing no expense for celebrating this anniversary, Blocks, the monthly LEGO magazine, is taking a Jeep to drive through some dino references…
Considering 76957 Velociraptor Escape is aimed at a younger 4+ audience, it’s actually inspired by one of the most gruesome parts of the movie. After the power is knocked out and the fences fail, the determined Velociraptors make their escape. When game warden Robert Muldoon tries to corral them, he gets outsmarted by the pack leader. Even if it is a dark moment it finally gives fans Muldoon as a fantastically detailed minifigure, complete with tranquilliser gun.
While most of Jurassic Park takes place in the confines of the park, there are facilities that spread across all of Isla Nublar. 76958 Dilophosaurus Ambush is one of the first sets to ever acknowledge this, with a sign made using various sticker covered tiles announcing the directions for the East Dock. And because its LEGO, the pieces can easily be swapped round to point in the wrong direction!
After failing to see any dinosaurs during the start of their tour, Ellie Sattler jumps out of the Ford Explorer (Hammond should have sprung for some locks) when she sees a Triceratops. Although it might be ill, it’s her first experience with the creatures she has studied as a palaeontologist. Determined to help the animal, Ellie is happy to examine its dung, made in 76959 Triceratops Research using brown cheese slopes and a little brown frog (that’s another easter egg! Remember what the gaps in the DNA sequencing are filled in with?).
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When dinosaurs ruled the Earth
At the thrilling climax of Jurassic Park it seems our heroes’ luck has finally run out, with the Velociraptors closing in from every angle. The T. rex arrives just in time to save the day though. 75961 Visitor Center: T. rex & Raptor Attack might not be the big Icons playset that fans dream of, but it still manages to capture the essence of this scene, from the dinosaur skeleton in the atrium to the banner that boldly flies behind the T. rex when it roars in challenge.
‘Hold onto your butts’
Another great part of 75961 Visitor Center: T. rex & Raptor Attack is that it is bringing Ray Arnold as a minifigure for the first time. He made his debut in 75936 Jurassic Park: T.rex Rampage, so this is a far cheaper way to get the chief engineer. He’s also an exclusive, featuring a rumpled shirt and loose tie, probably from the stress of trying to undo Dennis’s hacking.
A new discovery
Can you ever have too many dinosaurs? Absolutely not, and it seems the LEGO designers would agree. There have been numerous species translated into LEGO moulds across the years, but a key one that has been missing is the Brachiosaurus. That’s probably due to the sheer size of the dinosaur, yet 75960 Brachiosaurus Discovery finally brings it to life. The box art reveals how the mould uses the tail to counterbalance when the brachiosaurus is posed on its hind legs – something that palaeontologists believe the 30 ton behemoth actually did.