June 9, 2015

Review: 41105 Pop Star Show Stage


This is the fourth Pop Star set we will be showing you. By now we have met Livi and had a look at her glamorous life. Now we are ready to see her on stage! Accompanying her in the spotlight is the future pop star Andrea. Together the two lovely performers will mesmerize the crowd in Heartlake City.

The FriendsBricks community wishes to thank TLG’s CEE Team for generous support of this set to review and share with fans.


Box Art: Front


Box Art: Back





Box Contents: 3 Bags, 2 Booklets & 2 Sticker Sheets. There are 446 (plus extra) pieces in this set.


Contents of Bag 1


Contents of the small bag in Bag 1


These pieces are new to me and to the world of LEGO Friends. The gray pieces are called Propeller Shaft and apparently mainly used in Technic. The black pieces are Technic Angular Wheels, and this is the first time something like these makes an appearance in the world of mini-dolls. I am looking forward to finding out what they are for.


There are three reversible overskirts for Livi and Andrea to dress in.


Livi is ready for the big show in this spectacular outfit! It’s not something you can find at Heartlake Shopping Mall: her shiny top is exclusive to this set, and her silver skirt & white mary janes are worn only in one other set.


Andrea also wears her brand new stage costume: her lovely top has a design very similar to Livi’s, and in different colors. The asymmetric skirt mold is new this year and was first introduced as part of Aira mini-doll in LEGO Elves.

Now let’s start building the Show Stage!

After seeing the two lovely performers in colorful stage costumes, we don’t see any colors typically associated with LEGO Friends. At Building Step 7, we have the base of the center area of the stage in white, gray and black.


Then we add the right and left sides of the stage using the four hinge parts. The hinges do not allow us to change the angles; they are placed to form and maintain that particular shape of the stage.


Preparing for Step 13, we make a row of curious Technic elements. What is it for?!


That strange object is now attached right in the middle of the stage base.


Similarly strange but slightly different sets of Technic pieces are combined for the right and left sides of the stage as well.


The Show Stage looks like this at Building Step 16, with the combined rotating mechanism in place.


At this stage, it is probably more like building a Technic set than a Friends sets. Having never built a Technic set, I was simply amazed to find out what this mechanism was designed to do; when you turn the yellow knob, all the five black Technic Angular Wheels also turn at the same time.

Then we build the first of the five small platforms designed to rotate with the turn of the yellow knob.


The center section of the stage is close to be complete, but something is not quite right for this to be a Friends set…


It’s the colors!
What has been built is totally cool, but the aesthetics of color combinations has been rather ignored. Let’s Friends-ify it with a little bit of a vibrant color!

Now that’s looking a bit more suitable for the Pop Star theme. Add a few more details and now everything from Bag 1 has been used, ...


except the few extra pieces you see here.

Extra Pieces in Bag 1
No extra gold microphone in Bag 1… ☹

Now let’s see what’s in Bag 2.

Contents of Bag 2


Contents of the small bag in Bag 2

Now back onto building the Show Stage. We need to cover the unsightly inner workings of the rotating mechanism by adding some walls.


Then we are adding four more of these rotating platforms onto the stage.



This picture shows you how the two black Technic Angular Wheels make the round platform rotate. There have probably been pop star stage toys with similar gimmicks, but I doubt there has ever been one for which you have to build an intricate action mechanism. Pop Star Show Stage is a great introduction to Technic building for those of us who have no interest in Technic vehicles.

So here we are, at Step 34; a turn of the yellow knob will cause all the five round platforms to turn at the same time.


Now we are adding some exterior details. This is what you see when you have finished Step 40 at the end of Booklet 1.


Then we are attaching panels with lights for stage effects. I’m skipping the stickers for now to see how the stage looks without them. This is the end of Bag 2.


Turn the yellow knob, and…

VoilĂ ! This is fun!


Extra Pieces in Bag 2
We are getting an extra microphone in Bag 2. ☺

It’s time for Bag 3!

Contents of Bag 3


Contents of the small bag in Bag 3

The stage looks nearly ready, but Livi wants to perform closer to her fans. So we need to build a few stage extension parts that can protrude into the audience.




Let’s build the part of the stage extension with the keyboard.


We have seen another electronic keyboard in 41004 Rehearsal Stage.


And now we are moving onto the side with the drum kit.


This new one is shorter compared to Mia’s, and does not have a seat and a place for drum sticks. I think this simpler version suits the stage better, as a drum kit that’s too big would be a distracting presence on stage.


Now, the final stage extension part:


The two Transparent Light Blue platforms can turn together. If you turn one of them, the other turns in the same direction.


When all the stage extension parts are in place, Pop Star Show Stage looks almost ready!


Oh, wait, one more step to go! The stage can’t be complete without the large fan-shaped decoration. Similar to the one used in 41104 Pop Star Dressing Room.

Now we have reached Step 53, and the stage has been built!

 
Extra Pieces in Bag 3

The stage looks very nice, but I think the stickers will make it look even better.


By the way, the back of the stage looks like this:

You can hang the stage costumes there.

Now see Livi’s grand entrance onto the stage! (drum roll provided by Andrea)


Turn the knob, and…
Flip!



There she is!
I have also switched the extension parts around and changed the stage configuration, and now Andrea on the drum kit is on the tip of the long walkway.

Now, do you know that Mia, Emma, Andrea, Olivia and Stephanie have recently formed the band named the Heartbeats?

No? In LEGO Friends webisode “Making the Band” (season 2, episode 16), you will see them starting the band. Andrea does the singing, of course. Mia is the drummer, Stephanie is the guitarist, Olivia is on the keyboard, and Emma apparently plays the bass guitar.

It will be even more fun to combine this Show Stage with the four other girls of the Heartbeats.


"♪ Me and my girls, we're best friends forever! ♪" 


"♪ Don't you know that there is nothing stronger than this? The Power of Friendship! ♪"


"Encore!"  "We want more!"

On the surface, this set might seem like it’s all about glitter and glamour. I can imagine some people may make the mistake of assuming it is a simple build with a whole lot of decorations. No, this is NOT a simple build; what you see on the surface may be a typical Friends set, but it contains an internal mechanism that makes you think more of a Technic set. With this Pop Star Show Stage, LEGO is remarkably showing us how advanced building techniques can be incorporated into the sweet world of LEGO Friends. If you want to experience something totally new with LEGO Friends, Pop Star Show Stage is it!

Thanks for reading, and keep building with LEGO Friends!

Maya

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