The Blind Praise of Bionicle

@Joe helped make this topic.

I’ve noticed this for a while now, but lately it has become more prevalent; the blind praise of Bionicle. A large portion of the community appears to act like Bionicle is some sort of masterpiece, and it’s not, this group is probably blinded by nostalgia.

Bionicle has some of the best storytelling in a line of toys aimed at children under 13 years of age (this is arbitrary, do not treat this as an exact statistic). It doesn’t have as much to give to teenagers or adults as it does children. There are so many better stories aimed at teens and adults, such as the IDW Comics Transformers series, Star Wars Expanded Universe books by Timothy Zahn, and a great majority of comics and movies produced by Marvel.

As for the sets themselves…

Imagine this wasn’t in your childhood memory and it’s just some toy you saw at the store, would you call it as great as you would call it when it’s in your childhood memory, really? It has quite a few issues, such as awkward proportions that aren’t consistent with Toa who use a different system, difficult to use parts, a multicoloured mask that makes the piece almost useless on MOCs, a bad price per piece ratio, fragile joints and a lack of any distinct play features, and many of these issues affect the other Toa Mahri. It’s most likely nostalgia as to why anyone thinks it’s really anything more. Also the Toa Inika (where this system spawned), like the Toa Mata are clone sets, don’t try to deny it.

I think TTV’s constant praise of Bionicle like it’s a gift from a god contributed to this, as it’s why the channel exists to begin with. Some people even thought G2 was great just because of the way TTV talked about it, but when G2 ended, many of said people realised it’s not so great.

I’ve seen a lot of elitism after people realised G2 wasn’t as good as many people made it out to be. A group of people (some of which are on this message boards) have even refused to call G2 Bionicle, claiming it’s not worthy of the title, and this is almost cult-like. The name of Bionicle isn’t the defined name of greatness, it’s only the name of a kid’s toy series that began in 2001.

So, to TTV Message Boards users who may disagree, I ask you to explain why Bionicle is so great, and please try to keep any nostalgic thoughts in check, as nothing is gained from commenting on it with only sentimentality. Objectiveness is the best form of critique.


Well said. I agree that it seems people just blindly praise BIONICLE because it was BIONICLE. I was a little this way with G2, but the faults are very evident, especially in the finale.

And the people who think that G2 isn’t worthy of being called BIONICLE are silly. Sure, the story may not be as developed as it was by 2006, but 2001 wasn’t either. And the sets were some of the best we’ve ever gotten from BIONICLE.

So, both generations of BIONICLE are just that, BIONICLE, and nothing can change that.


I dunno if you’re talking about the podcast or the Message Boards. If the cast and crew, I’d like to see some examples, cause I don’t think anyone in our cast believes Generation 1 was as holy as that. =P

Not doubting we may have done that, by the way, but I am curious of the sake of discussion.


I think it’s more so how it came off. I don’t personally remember many times that this occurred specifically, I just think the fact that it was treated with so much respect (which is completely logical, given how it’s more or less what led to the creation of the podcast) might have come off as that to some people.

Less so the intent, more so just how it came off in some aspects.


Every fandom has their blind praise. They’ll try to pretend to themselves that something was always good and will never be bad. Like those people who say that you must like every bit of Bionicle or else you aren’t a true fan.

But on the other side of the coin their the people who hold what they like sacred and any changed made to it is blasphemy. When Bionicle got a reboot with new story, settings, and set design, people flipped. They could stand seeing their favorite toyline being changed in a way they didn’t like and began to disown it and say “people aren’t true fans if they like this Hero Factory cash grab” or “you’re blindly praising it simple because it’s has the name Bionicle”.

Var explained this three years ago and it’s still happening now. Gee what will the future hold for us with this community.


I remember this being an actual quote. What a silly willy. Because apparently CCBS = HF. So I guess Chima = HF, and the Ultrabuilds and Star Wars.


Well, at that point it’s a blanket statement that holds little to no weight. It’s a bold claim, and that isn’t helpful for a discussion about, quite honestly, an extremely fascinating topic.

Obviously, TTV isn’t a hivemind. We don’t all share the same opinion on BIONICLE. Meso hates G2, I’m indifferent. I love G1, while Kahi is indifferent. I can say wholeheartedly that BIONICLE was a fluke. It may never happen again, and we are lucky that we got to experience it.

However, saying that BLANK thinks that BLANK is a Gift from God without really pointing to specific examples… That doesn’t drive discussion, nor does it really help solve the problem.

I will say it’s certainly possible. Of course it would be, we started with BIONICLE. I’ve personally involved myself in the story and reviewed all the sets. I am a massive fan of BIONICLE, mainly G1. But I can acknowledge the faults it has. But I am interested to debate and discuss my viewpoints so long as I know what it is I said that is being discussed. =P


I think it’s unfair that you singled out jaller, or any one of the mahri for that matter because they had other great sets that would look just as cool to any passing kid in the toy isle from that year, like Maxilos and Spinax, Karzahni, and many others. Objectively, they’re just cool lookin robots, and also have their unique aesthetic to boot. That’s why my uncle bought a Piraka for me for my 6th birthday, introducing me to Bionicle. He just picked up what looked cool (and wasn’t overly expensive).

In addition, many of us praise the line because we can see the passion that the story team, designers, and others who worked on Bionicle. Without taking into account what they created, the amount of effort, care, and sheer creativity and imagination that they put into it is admirable


We’re talking about how good they are to adults and teenagers, not kids.

Yes, but passion isn’t necessarily quality.


“Cool” isn’t objective. It literally can’t be objective. A cool design is entirely up to personal taste and has nothing to do with whether a set is good or bad.


PREFACE: None of this is intended as hostility. I’m intrigued by this topic, and it has proven quite enjoyable to debate upon. I admit that my views are flawed by bias. I hope everybody else involved in this debate will admit similarly.

Please. If you’d like to call me out for something, do so by name. As far as I know, I am the only person who has stated such a thing to prove my point, and generalizing something that isn’t general only leads to confusion. As far as I can tell, I am the opposition of this, so please, do not bring anybody else into the line of fire.

I can’t explain from the ground up why G1 was “good” no more than I can explain why G2 was “bad.” These things exist entirely in theory, and are dictated solely by opinion. We saw this heavily on a certain topic regarding Solek.

BIONICLE Generation 1. I will not lie. I was not present for 01-06, although I’ve certainly done my fair share of investigation into what came before I got into the line. I don’t know the day one nostalgia others might.

However, it is true that 06-09 are my nostalgic years, if you will. As goes for all of us here, objectivity is impossible.

I’ll start by saying I don’t defend the sets. While they are my childhood, my years as a MOCist have raised my own personal standards beyond what LEGO is capable of mass-producing. Again, this is the fault of none other than myself, and I blame nobody for it. I do believe despite this, that the villain waves we got from G2 were atrociously subpar compared to the hero waves.

The thing I defend in G1, rather, is the story. Perhaps I am an “edgelord” as some may call me for the following statements, but I don’t like it when a story is sunshine and rainbows. Simple truth is, for a dramatic plot to make sense for me, people will get hurt. Not everybody makes it through the story.

That’s what drew me in to BIONICLE in the first place. I played along with 06, creating my own stories with the sets I had. I barely knew anything about the actual plot. Around 07, I started getting involved in the story. Read the comics, searched the Wikia, read whatever I could. Learned about the story up to that point.

And then, as many people know, in the last comic of 07, Matoro died.
I fully stand by my belief that if Matoro didn’t die in that section of the story, I wouldn’t be here today, because it made the difference between me losing interest in the story or continuing on the path I was on.

With that character’s death, suddenly things had consequences. No hero had plot armor anymore. I fully expected others to die, and although Matoro dying made little old 7-year-old Ek sad, it made me want more.

08 introduced the resurgence of Makuta, of course. In my opinion one of the best written villains for a kid’s storyline…well, ever. I at least can’t think of any competitors for that position. However, my views are very obviously biased, so take that with a grain of salt.

The rest of 08 was good as well. Although again, I don’t stand by the sets, I certainly think the story was enjoyable, and the whole thing really felt like it had meaning, directly following up Matoro’s death. The fight for the universe. The return of the characters I had never experienced firsthand.

09…I will not make the mistake of defending. It was where the series began to lose its touch, at least in my opinion (again, objectivity on this is essentially impossible). This is where I draw my line. The story lost its touch, the power it had been building up. If BIONICLE had concluded in 2008, it would have made sense.

From my most non-objective standpoint, however, is the soul that went into G1. It felt like an ever-growing universe that individuals - people - chose to dedicate their time and passion to. The entire story changed to me when I learned about Faber’s contribution to the Mata storyline. It felt purposeful.

This is all ridiculous given that the story is, plain and simple, just a story; that the toy line was, just that. A toy line. But this is the difference between G1/2 for me. This is what I feel is the point of the debate.

I realize from a debate perspective, the entire post I have spent the last thirty minutes or so typing out is very underwhelming. However, explaining why something is “good” implies that objectivity has become irrelevant. Good is in the eye of the beholder. I don’t like G2… An opinion. You may have liked it. Guess what? An opinion.

My personal opinion will remain unchanged on this. I still dislike G2. I still like G1. Perhaps my defense of my childhood nostalgia has been too strong, and I admit that flaw, but I also see others blindly defending G2, which feels like far shakier ground than I stand on. But, those people may be defending what is to them what G1 is to me. I am not here to judge.

This has been a very fascinating topic to explore. I thank you for continuing this debate, and await the response I have little doubt I will receive.



Honestly I don’t think Bionicle is the best thing ever.

Looking back, it is very flawed.

The sets can be hit or miss in the original, with good sets like the Metru and terrible ones like the agori or most sets after 2007.

The story can be confusing in some places as well, not to mention the books are the only things worth caring about. The comics kinda suck and the movies are pretty bad, with both making it clear they are only meant to sell toys. Add that up with clear attempts to appeal to kids like “The Piraka Rap” and the whole “Free the band” things, and it’s clear that this is just a toyline by Lego.

And that’s what I think the franchise is: It’s just a toyline. It’s just a series of cool looking (some of them at least) toys with a story behind them. In the end that’s all it is: a series of toys. I imagine if it wasn’t for nostalgia i don’t think many adults would be that in to these aside from “Hey these look cool.”

I may have nostalgia for these, but I’m still willing to admit it’s not perfect.

The thing is though, the first one felt like it had effort put into it. It’s pretty creative and the sets do have cool functions, with thought actually put into the story as opposed to say Power Miners, where the story was written in five minutes.

The second one has little to no effort put into it. While I still love the winter 2015 sets most of the other sets kinda sucked. The story had no effort put into it and the promotion for the line wasn’t good. It was a good idea ruined by bad execution.

It’s annoying how often people seem like they blindly worship Bionicle as if it were the bible or some else sacred but I am willing to admit it’s not perfect. Heck as I stated I see it as nothing more than a kinda cool toyline.


It’s amazing to me that we have people that say we’re overly critical of BIONICLE and then topics like this that say we act as though BIONICLE is a gift from God.

It’s actually quite humorous. I’m not really sure what to say in regards to that claim other than I think we’ve shown very strong opinions for both the negative and positive aspects of both G1 and G2.

There are things to like and hate about BIONICLE. No, it’s not perfect, but it’s also not the worst thing ever made.


I don’t really understand… any of what you’re posting, really. At least when it applies to us.

Ever since 2010 we’ve spent hundreds of hours of our life breaking down BIONICLE piece by piece. We’ve analyzed its strength and weaknesses, Eljay’s reviewed every single BIONICLE set, both good and bad, surveying them objectively, and plot holes/inconsistencies have been debated to death.

I don’t honestly know how you could listen to our content, podcasts or otherwise, and claim that we give “blind praise” to BIONICLE. All the way back from the initial launch of BIONICLE 2015, even when the hype was at its highest point, we were always fair and reasonable, I feel. Sure, the hype for its return was immense, but we were critical towards some design choices of the sets. Even during the NYCC launch party, which was a joy to attend, we were concerned regarding the 90 second online animations and the storytelling direction. Just because we didn’t jump on the CCBS hate bandwagon like a lot of other people on “BioTube” doesn’t mean we gave BIONICLE blind praise.

Our podcasts have been filled with debates over the quality of BIONICLE G2 throughout the course of its run. As @Eljay so eloquently put it, we’re not a hive mind. All of us value different things above others and have different opinions on stuff, and a lot of that comes out through our podcast debates. When all is said and done, though, even if some of us never agree, I feel that we represent many different opinions of the community in our podcast atmosphere so that no side, opinion, or belief goes completely unrepresented.

Sure, we’re fans. We love BIONICLE to death, otherwise we wouldn’t have our channel at all. That being said, between the G1 tone ■■■■■, the overcomplicated G1 story, the Bara Magna arc, G1’s ending, the Red Star controversy, the story serials, G2’s simplistic story, the online animations, JTO’s ending, the non-stop plot holes, the occasionally poor set design of both generations, and the severe lack of marketing… I think that our track record speaks for itself as far as seeing both positive and negative sides of BIONICLE.



Calling people out is immature and unnecessary.

I have seen people saying stuff like this, but the exact wording was from you.

I never asked for some sort of definitive answer.

That doesn’t matter, you still had nostalgia, and that could affect your view on it.

A piece being fragile, for example, is an objective flaw. Objectivity is possible.

Okay, that’s a cool twist on the usual Lego stories for children. Most people over 13 wouldn’t be so engaged by stuff like this. Creating stories through play is better for children anyway.

Yet again, would this be so great if you first read it now?


I think the main problem is that the fandom never had a reason to look at Bionicle critically, because for all of us it ended when we were kids. Yeah we still remembered Bionicle, but we didn’t think about it really. We were more focused on “keeping it alive” then looking back critically. Now do I think TTV is to for blame this? No more than any other fan in my opinion.


Was Bionicle cool? Yes.
Was it without any flaws? No.
Is it still an enjoyable and fun line? Yes

That’s basically how I feel about this. I know Bionicle isn’t perfect, no form of entertainment is, no matter how much you want to believe it. Random example: I know some people who act like the Original Star Wars Trilogy was perfect and ignore any kind of critique they have, mainly because most people grew up watching those movies (myself included, A New Hope was one of the first movies I ever watched) But the truth is those problems still exist. But they don’t ruin the experience. Just because you notice that Luke has a couple awkward lines doesn’t make the overall movie bad, it just means you noticed more issues since the time you watched then as a kid. Bionicle is very much in the same boat as Star Wars especially for me personally, it’s awesome and I have a lot of attachment to it, but it isn’t perfect either. (Though tbh, Star Wars has less problems than Bionicle from a story standpoint)

As for saying TTV just worships G1, I can’t agree. They’ve been critical in a relatively fair way.


Perhaps this went unnoticed. I do not, under these circumstances, have any reason to defend the sets and their design. G1 or G2, for that matter. That is not where my debate lies, and I will not respond to anything else directed at me regarding them.

As far as I’m concerned, G1 and G2 are on equal footing for the sets. In my opinion, G2 had higher “high points” (2015 Toa, a few of the 2016 Toa, Umarak, ect.) and lower “low points” (2015 villains, 2016 villains, LoSS, the Creatures, ect.). In the end, for me, they balance out I guess.

If I compare it to almost every other LEGO IP in existence? Yes.

I’ll drop any charades here. I no longer get the engagement and joy out of G1 that I used to. That’s to be expected. I’ve moved on, created my own entire universes and stories inspired by BIONICLE but not made by them. I hope it’s clear here that I admit all biases.

What I do retain as best I can, is a level of objectivity when I compare the stories. While it is an unfair comparison because of run time, it is a comparison nonetheless. I will not lower my standards simply because G2 didn’t get the same timing that its predecessor did. If I take and individually list each thing, I know I’ll be met with that exact argument of “2 years compared to 10,” so you’ll have to forgive me for forgoing that particular exercise in futility :stuck_out_tongue:

However, this debate has made me reconsider my opinion from a slightly different standpoint. Stubborn, I may be, but thickheaded I am not. As such, I’ll be rephrasing my statement regarding a continuation of BIONICLE.

I still don’t want a G3. No thank you.
But, if you proposed a continuation of G2 - to give it the chance that G1 got - maybe it still wouldn’t be for me. It may never be for me again. Such is the passage of time. But I see no reason to blindly argue against giving future generations the same joy I got out of BIONICLE.



I wasn’t talking about your points with the bit about fragile parts, it was just an example of an objective flaw.

Ah. My apologies for the misunderstanding.