Kill it with fire!

It’s very rare to come across a LEGO photo that makes me stop and ask aloud “what the hell is that?”  At first I thought it was a dildo or perhaps a flexible flashlight, or even some sort or sentient rolled up umbrella.  Never did it occur to me that I might be looking at a spaceship, but according to builder Cath_Bailey , that is precisely what “Interloper” is.  The builder has a pretty valid point that most starships today are well-built but often uninteresting because of excessive use of boilerplate.  Take the current fad of Homeworld inspired designs that are frequently stunning but have also homogenized the state of the art into one big lozenge-shaped ship with fat stripes and bold colors.  Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love the esthetic and the game and I don’t pin this on new builders either.  It was just as bad in my early days and the boilerplate was just as entrenched.  When I came into the hobby everything was a Lego theme build like M-Tron, Blacktron and Classic Space, none of which did a thing for me because I lacked the key ingredient of nostalgia to really embrace the trend.  So I appreciate Cath_Bailey when he or she writes :

When looking at other ships, I’ve been hard pressed to find any that are unconventional. Hopefully this changes. When I think of space, I think of otherworldly things, not traditional, man-made structures.”


I dare say the builder accomplished the mission of creating something non-traditional, this doesn’t look like any starship I’ve ever seen.  There is a video of the model, but unfortunately the builder elects not to show the viewer the back side.  Having access to the entire ship might have changed my opinion of the design or at least increase my ability to identify it’s purpose.  We get a glimpse of the back, as the disembodied hand turns the light switch on and off, but the rest shall remain a mystery.  The video also shows a modest base and stand for the Interloper, but it isn’t noteworthy because it doesn’t add anything to the model itself.  For those of you who are new to the hobby or don’t recognize the parts involved, the segmented body of the ship is made up of large inside-out tires.  I remember first noticing the technique back in 2008 with Jordan Schwartz’s The Wretched Egg: different tire, same technique.


Just like InterloperJordan Jordan also went for something unconventional and succeeded with a monster instead of a space ship.  Alien ship…Lovecraftian monster…I’m not sure there is much difference when the goal is to break the boilerplate and create something that you hope has never been seen before.  What I find interesting is that I don’t love either model, but I blogged them because I was drawn to both by inherent strangeness of the images.  If you can’t look away, that counts for something.

While we’re killing things with fire, let’s make sure we hose down this model with the flame-thrower.  The builder is the always entertaining Djordje and the horrid creature is called an Abyssal Crayworm.  NPU (Nice Part Usage) doesn’t even begin to cover it here, this is a stunning model that will likely hit every blog worth it’s salt.  Djordje calls this scuttling atrocity an “unassuming ocean floor scavenger“, but I think it’s quite assuming.


Remember, constant reader, when in doubt, kill it with fire!


9 thoughts on “Kill it with fire!

    1. Awesome!
      Thanks Chris!

      Haha yeah you know the homeworld fad got super popular when during SHIPtember – the makers of the game noticed and reached out to us to give us some prizes 🙂


  1. All of these artists remind me of my own biases and my own self imposed limitations. Turning tires inside out? Who ever heard of such a thing… Its crazy talk! Point being that left to my own devices, I would go on and on… NOT perceiving the possibilities that are inherent in each and every part. These builds sort of rattle my cage. Bionical parts… odd connections… subjects that seem ill-defined or maybe even confusing to me (except for the Crayworm… I totally get that!). The very style of these builds is a challenge to my comfy well worn conservative values.

    And, like all the best challengers, these artists issue their challenge from a position of undeniable strength. These are powerful tangible builds that are doing the talking. Not just a bunch of high falutin abstract talk about freedom of expression and the value of non-conformity. Not talk, but rather builds. They are in my face and they are excellent.

    Baileys point: “When I think of space, I think of otherworldly things…” is logically appealing. Space is in fact… mostly not Earth. Not human. And most of the stuff in it… is not of our world. And his assertion that space builds are largely dominated by conventional “mad made” structures is empirically correct.

    Baileys point is re-enforced by the presentation of this excellent and decidedly unconventional MOC. It IS otherworldly… and well built, well presented, and captivating. Right on!

    On the flip side, Baileys work does not pull me out of my own knee deep mud. I am pre-disposed to imagine humans struggling to meet the challenge of space. And so my imagination steps of from that biased start point. I like stuff like this ship by Chris Debree ( ). It is EXACTLY the sort of conventionalism Bailey is bypassing with his work.

    These artists remind me is a delightful way, that the quality of art is an entirely separate consideration from public taste. The two topics (quality and personal appeal) may overlap… but only incidentally. There is no mechanical or consistent link between the two.

    As far as posts go, Keith as usual, your selection of subjects is spot on, your presentation is engaging, and you close with a man wielding a flamethrower…

    I weep.


    1. You linked to the Chris Debree model, which was a cool trip down memory lane, but the real gem was in the comment section by Mr. Zac Lowing.

      “Wow Nice, really nice! HUGE! I like this spaceship alot! How big is it? I started a new group called ‘Only BIG spaceships’ and you just might qualify! If the spaceship is over 3 feet ( at least 114 studs) in any dimension, or bigger I just might add you.”

      You may remember Zac from this timeless photo.

      The rest of your message about originality and open-faced sandwiches has been lost. Say it with me, Brahma…Brahma…Brahma


  2. “Interloper” definitely grabs my interest. I like it’s resemblance to a gas mask, which is both sexy and disturbing. Djordje’s bug is really cool. A horde of those things would look pretty scary.


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