Since my last post, Lego has announced some more sets for the coming year – time for part 2 of my 2020 impressions. And just like in part 1 I won’t hold up myself with the (for me) less interesting sets. So straight to the good stuff!
Creator Expert 10270 Bookshop
The elephant in the room is of course the Bookshop that has been announced just a couple days ago. Being a modular building, it is one of those sets which usually get the most anticipation – and most scrutiny. After the recent departure towards 1950-America-inspired buildings, which seemingly haven’t been as well received, we are back to European-style for this year.
Personally I am not as critical about whether its European or American, or whatever-style. I really like the Downtown Diner and the Detective’s Office (which can be seen as an intermediate step with its film-noir-inspired theme really) and I find both don’t look out of place with older buildings. Especially if you take into account that in real-life cities you often get quite a mishmash of different styles, materials and eras as well. A diversity that tells its own story about the history of a place and adds to its character.
Anyway, back to the script: The Bookshop is inspired by Amsterdam townhouses and definitely breathes a nice European flair. A plus is the ability to split the houses and recombine them. A nifty feature taken over from the Pet Shop from 2011, far back in history when I was still deep in my dark ages!
Of course this feature comes with a bit of a drawback: the bookstore itself appears quite small and isn’t as prominent in the set as its title suggests. All in all the set feels more toned-down than its most recent, rather flashy predecessors. The Bookshop is more in line with the Parisian Restaurant or the Assembly Square in having a more conservative Lego Town atmosphere. It is really charming though with its lovely sculpted facade and happy colours. A safe, but quite likeable choice.
60256 Racing Cars
I found this set instantly charming. Since the Speed Champions are heading full-on into 8-stud-wide territory, a nice, small and probably quite affordable set like this is just what I am looking for. The cars are admittedly quite a bit more simplified than their oversized licensed counterparts, but the shaping and overall appearance is pretty spot on and simply fun and exciting. It really shows how much you can do with relatively few pieces. Great!
60257 Service Station
The 2020 Service Station is another example of how good Lego cars can look like today, even if they are only made of quite a limited number of pieces and even if its one of those terrible SUV-things… At least they got a not-VW-bus in the set and a charging station for electric vehicles as well. All in all a really nice little set, even if the service station itself is a bit bare-bones.
60258 Tuning Workshop
I saved the best one for the end. Seeing this one left me a bit speechless, until I managed a appreciating ‘Wow – yeah!’ or something in that spirit. Ah, where to start? The lovely greaser garage? The flame-breathing hotrod? The rocket bike? The charming minifigures? This set has so much exciting stuff going on that I’m afraid, Ulf will have to close his shop next year and join company with these guys!