Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Lone Ranger Stagecoach Escape - 79108 LEGO Review

The Lone Ranger movie is due out in theaters next week and I figured it was finally time to get around to building one of the LEGO sets from the movie line that have been sitting off to the side for a few weeks now. So far, I have picked up the Stagecoach Escape and Constitution Train. I'll be reviewing the train here in a few days.
The Stagecoach was the first set of the line that jumped out at me as a must have. In terms of western vehicles, you can't really get much more iconic than a red wagon being pulled by a team of horses. Add in the fact that you get a set packed full of figures and features, and it was hard to come up with a reason not to add this set to my collection.

What's in the box?
The set consists of three numbered bags, a small sheet of decals, and a single instruction booklet. As usual with the smaller sets, the instructions are not protected and will likely come out of the box slightly folded. Bag 1 includes two horses, Lone Ranger minifigure, Jesus minifigure (that would HEY-zeus, I imagine), and the bricks to build the base of the wagon and hitch for the horses. Bag 2 includes Tonto and most of the main frame for the coach. Bag 3 has the Barrett and Red Harrington figs, along with bricks for finishing the build.
In terms of parts, most of the bricks included are widely available and nothing is exclusive, outside of the figures. The gold 2x2 tile is only in one other set, as are the reddish brown suspension beams used on the wheels of the coach. There are quite a few useful pieces in here still and the color selection is pretty good.

Extra pieces
You also get two copies of the 1x1 pocket watch tile piece. By the time this line is done, this piece will probably be as common as the compass from Pirates of the Caribbean sets. I should also note that I got an extra reddish brown hat and a couple extra revolvers, which I was quite pleased with.

What about the minifigures?
For a $30 set, it's pretty impressive to see that LEGO crammed in a whopping five minifigures. They include the two main characters and what I'm guessing is a major villain, henchman, and female lead of the movie. Tonto and Red both have great soft hair pieces, which have holes in them for adding on headgear (Tonto's crow and Red's hat).
The torso printing on all of the figures is great. Red and Tonto are the only figs with expressions printed on each side of their heads. The cowboy hats on the others pretty much make that impossible to do.
Overall, I was quite impressed with the figures. The inclusion of five movie characters in a set this size is almost unheard of, but it's very welcome.

How is the build?
As with most vehicles, construction starts from the ground up. You build the main struts and wheels to begin with, along with the hitch for the horses. Next is a little technic contraption that allows you to bounce a small suitcase out of the back side of the coach. Then it's the walls and driver's seat. The build is topped off with the roof of the stagecoach and a small safe that holds a silver bar.
The build itself is pretty basic and nothing really came across as too challenging. It took me about two hours, but that was largely because I was watching a movie and had some other distractions. If you focused on just the build, I can't imagine this taking more than an hour.

Stickers are minimal and, while not essential, do enhance the overall final product quite nicely. The two largest are used on a pair of 1x4x3 red wall pieces, which creates the backs of the seats inside the stagecoach. There are two more that go on a pair of 1x8 brown tiles and say "STAGE COACH." Finally, you get four that are mounted on 2x2 red tiles that go by the doors on each side.

Final thoughts
I got pretty much exactly what I expected to out of this set. Considering I went in with high expectations, it did not disappoint. While I have not yet built the rest of the TLR line, I hope the rest of them look just as good when they are complete.

At a US retail price of $29.99, 279 pieces, five minifigures, and three horses, I think this set is a steal. If you can get any sort of discount, it should pretty much be an on the spot purchase. When I'm shopping for Christmas gifts for LEGO fans later this year, this will probably be one of the first sets I consider.

Worth noting for US buyers, Amazon currently has the set on sale for just $24.97.

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