These are the words used by Russian builder Leonid An to describe his latest diabolical effort, “Lungorthin the devil“. There is much to appreciate in Leonid’s design that fuses Bionicle and System parts seamlessly to create a dynamic figure that threatens to leap off the monitor and drag you straight to hell…where you belong frankly. The Bionicle elements allow for the typically interesting range of motion and the system parts are used perfectly to shape the monstrous head that drew my attention immediately. There is some pretty complex technique going on in that cranium, packed in a very small space. The minifig arms and spiky black claws form a very effective eye-orbit to house the trans-orange spheres. I do think the trans-orange breast is a little odd (especially so close to the same saucer piece used on the left bicep), but you need a little strangeness to make a demon worth his salt. The trans-orange chain around Lungorthin’s midsection is a difficult part to integrate into most models but it’s just the right answer here.
Leonid has tried his hand with demonic action before, like 2014’s “Cepheus“, which came complete with one of the scariest Bionicle based weapons I’ve ever seen. The photo really enhances the model and I love how the builder was willing to sacrifice half of his work to get this killer image. It looks like a Norwegian death metal CD cover. Many builders wouldn’t consider using an image that omitted half of the model but I wish they would, the results can be stunning. I also happen to think the legs were the biggest weakness of this hulking figure and maybe the builder was trying to get a photograph that obscured them. Whatever the motivation I love this menacing, off-center shot.
Gloom doesn’t always have to be demonic with Leonid, I’ve included the charming “EmOgirl” at no extra charge to you, the viewing public. The figure reminds me of Tina from Bob’s Burgers, mostly because of that ingenious technique for the hair and the open-mouthed expression. I can almost hear that groaning sound Tina frequently makes. The purse is spot-on as well, which is not something I thought I’d be saying in a post about the devil and the rubber-band laces on the shoes are a great touch. Rubber bands are a difficult part to use effectively because they are just so very un-LEGO-like.
While we’re chatting about all things satanic, I would be remiss if I didn’t offer up another anecdote from Bricks West 03′. Not only did I meet the great Dan Jassim at the rinky-dink gathering of LEGO nerds, I also had the chance to talk with Bryce McGlone, who is one of the early innovators of Bionicle and occasional purveyor of the demonic. I was lucky enough to be displaying my pathetic gray wall wall next to Mr. McGlone’s masterpiece entitled “Beelzebub”, a ground breaking model during it’s time that elicited one of the single greatest reactions I’ve ever seen on public day. You’ll have to excuse the wrinkled sheet for a backdrop, as I’ve said before, 2003 was a simpler time when people didn’t care as much about presentation. It was more important to share the art in some ways, than optimizing the image with custom watermark logos and Photoshoppery. So I’m watching the crowd on public day, fielding the same 3 eternal questions (how long? how many? how did you do it?) when a single mom and her rotund son stopped dead in their tracks when confronted with mighty Beelzebub. The kid’s mouth dropped to the floor, a perfectly normal reaction that I had succumbed to earlier in the day, but the mother uttered a sentence that has stuck with me for 13 years: “Look away Daniel it’s Satanic!”. She had a look of pure, unadulterated revulsion on her face as she physically put her hand over her sons wide eyes and ushered him towards the exit. Up until then I didn’t think it was possible for a model to elicit that kind of visceral reaction from the viewing audience, it was kind of an eye-opener as were so many things at my first convention. Way to go Bryce and way to go Satan!
Finally, constant reader, I can’t discuss the topic of Old Scratch without mentioning my favorite depiction of the dark one in LEGO, Jordan Schwartz’s classic from 2010 with over 40k views to its name: “The Devil Went Down to Georgia“. If you don’t understand why this model is superb, you just don’t get it and you likely never will. While it can’t compete with McGlone’s Beelzebub in crazy technique or texture, it does show the fun side of Satan, which is important in understanding his appeal.