LEGO Ideas creation by Australian designer Brent Waller, takes a nostalgic journey into Jerry Seinfeld TV apartment, packed with episode references!
Entering into LEGO's list of TV show set entourage is the latest LEGO Ideas Seinfeld set! Property number three behind Big Bang Theory and F.R.I.E.N.D.S., is this Seinfeld set keeping the TV hype alive, or is it becoming part of a stagnating unoriginal idea? Read on!
Straight off the bat, we need to talk about the idea of a studio set idea. LEGO Ideas is been poured with suggestions based on old nostalgic properties, in the hopes that creators will strike gold and get an Ideas set into circulation. That's because this is the third property to be picked up for ideas sets. One of the concerns we had with getting our hands on this set was whether or not that this idea had run its course.
Heck, there's a rumour of another TV show set coming out too.
There are a number of similarities with the Seinfeld set, just like the others before it. We have a repeat of studio lights like in the F.R.I.E.N.D.S. set, but this time around making them smaller and above the set, rather than awkwardly to the side. This idea is also better than its predecessor, as you can also remove these lights in case you don't want them.
There is one big significant difference that this set has that the BBT and F.R.I.E.N.D.S. sets don't have, and that is tiled floors. Yes! This particular set looks a lot cleaner (and will be easier to clean of dust!) than the others that came before. Although I don't agree with all the stud placements on the floor, it certainly sets it apart and makes it sponge worthy.
Keeping with the authentic layout, the hallway can't exist in Jerry's apartment building. Before you go jumping down our throats and saying that it would simply bend around the corner, there are a few shots from the show where Jerry is chatting with someone out the front of his apartment down a straight hallway. TV magic everybody. This has nothing to do with the LEGO build itself, just a weird little TV fact...
The interior of the building is quite well done to try and keep it 1:1 as much as possible, really giving an accurate representation of how small these types of apartments actually are. When you squeeze the entourage of characters in here, it really shows.
Jerry comes crashing in in his traditional stand-up garb. A loosely fitted shirt tucked in, and his classic smirk-ish smile. Although they could have technically used the Sirius Black/Mad-Eye Moody hair mould, they instead opt to give him an entirely new mullet mould. "What's the deal with that", I hear you say? I would put down to allowing him to turn his head left and right.
George comes in as a true representation of his character and even sports the most detail on his torso compared to his compatriots. He introduces a new bald/hair combo not seen since the Grandpa figure from CMF Series 10. Where this time around he has black hair and flesh instead of grey and yellow.
I'm a little disappointed with the choice with George's face, however. This will have a few people divided, but I think it would have been better to give him a devilish smirk rather than an annoyed face, as it doesn't display as well. Unfortunately, due to George's hairpiece, he is the only character to get a 1-side face print. Otherwise, we would see his face dropping below the hairline.
Probably the weakest figure in this set is Elaine. If you didn't have the context, it would be hard to place her as being Elaine from Seinfeld without some sort of extra clue. Even her accessory of a goldfish (later in the review) isn't enough to really stand her out.
Her torso is spot on, and her alternate face of confusion is pretty well right too, but her generic smile has something off about it. I don't really know how to explain it, but it just feels like the generic heads that we've gotten for Black Widow and Jyn Erso. I'll outright say I don't know how to fix it, but yeah.
Kramer is iconic in his look, style and swagger. This figure is no different. The classic Hawaiian shirt, the brown jacket, all ticks over here. I particularly like the stunned face printing for Kramer, like someone just pointed out something really obvious to him and he's just now connecting the dots. Giggy up!
Newman is Wayne Knight's second Minifigure appearance, with his first being Dennis Nedry in Jurassic Park. Fortunately enough, LEGO have made sure to keep Newman's face different from the previous versions as to not cheap out on the experience of getting this figure.
Newman comes wearing his U.S. Mail uniform, which is mostly just a jacket print on the front with slight ruffles on the back. In truth, I would have like LEGO to try and put a small logo on the top of his arms with a small logo to really sell it better, but otherwise he's a pretty good fig. And if you didn't like his expression, you can always swap him with Dennis Nedry face prints!
Buckle in, we're doing one of these again! Pack with more than 30 references from the nine-season and 180-episode series. We spotted what we think are ALL of the sneaky little references. If we missed one, please comment and let us know!
Uncle Leo & Porsche Poster
A shout out to the late Len Lesser who played Uncle Leo, a small portrait pic sits on the far left of the set. Next to Leo, a Porsche. It's well known Jerry Seinfeld is a huge car collector, and although this poster changed a couple of times throughout the series, this one is accurate.
Computer and Poster
Above Jerry's PC was a Memphis Chicks poster, and the PC, well, if you're old enough you remember how much space they took up! Oh, and on the computer screen, what else but 'Vandelay Industries. I wouldn't have thought Vandelay Latex would have a website but looks like Jerry's dial-up connection found it. Props also go to recreating that lamp!
Kramer & George Posters
A couple of the most iconic scenes from the series. Of course, George stripping down to his boxer shorts for the glamour shot, and Kramer's painting. While there is no way Jerry would ever hang these in his apartment, they both sit somewhat hidden within the build.
Book Shelf - Superman... Or Is It?!
Ok, this one is going to upset you... That's totally Superman on the top self, where Superman always sits right? Wrong! LEGO Ideas fan designer Brent Waller confirmed with LEGO designer César Soares, that it's actually in reference to 'The Statue' episode! Mind blown!
Now kids, before iPhones and music streaming, there was a thing called a stereo. It's that large black thing in the middle and could play 'cassettes', CDs and radio. It's possibly also in reference to the 'Write Off' Episode.
Fusilli Jerry & Prognosis Negative
We originally had this published as 'Macaroni Midler', a model Kramer made for Bette Midler after she ended up in the hospital. But reader Thomas Macnoe has updated us that is is Fusilli Jerry! Good eye! Prognosis Negative is a reference to the episode where the group wants to see the movie but just can't manage to coordinate with each other.
Water dispenser... Tick!
Superman magnet... Tick!
Red Porsche... Tick!
Skip Barber Magnet... Tick!
Missing: Yankee's season schedule.
Bonus references - Aside from the references we know, they have popped on 3x "Yada" mentioned, otherwise known as 'Yada yada yada'. If you don't know what that means, you should probably leave now. We also see 'Schmoopie', in reference to a girl Jerry was dating and they would call each other by the pet name. Monks Cafe menu, which of course is the dining the group spent most of their time. Plus, my favourite reference of all, Larry David, the co-creator of Seinfeld!
Cow and Cat Mittens
A subtle but well-spotted reference by LEGO. The cat and cow mittens hang on the side of the fridge. I do wish that these were on one stick side by side, instead of the stress of having to try and place them to sit parallel with each other, one below the other.
Doors and Intercom
The famous apartment 5A! Of course, it wouldn't be complete without Kramers apartment 5B. LEGO has opted for a sticker for both doors, which is understandable, complete with the intercom next to the door. Which really, kind of played a big role in the show. No detail has been missed, with the pipe running down the wall. Also acting as a nice seal to cover the gap.
Air Conditioner - Commando 8
Ah... The Commando 8. Installed!
The dangerously positioned air conditioner unit that simply sits within the window. What could possibly go wrong? A nice little touch adding the sticker to the back by LEGO.
Green Bike & Red Light
A prop that was never used or referenced from memory. The green bike lived in that hallway, peeking out from around the corner, adding a little more depth to the set. During building this set, the red light seemed out of place, but it's quite a perfect little detail added by the designers.
Who could forget Festivus and Frank Costanza's Festivus pole! A simple yet classic reference!
George is nervous about an upcoming dinner he and his parents are having with Susan and her parents and with good reason. They don't exactly hit it off and Frank Costanza so upset at the end of it all that he takes back the loaf of rye bread they had brought as a gift. George is intent on returning it leading Jerry to have an interesting encounter with an old woman who buys the last loaf of rye at the bakery. You know the rest...
Pretzel & Lobster Shirt
I shouldn't need to explain this one to you... But these pretzels... Are making me thirsty! Also, shout out to the great detailing of Kramer's lobster shirt from The Hamptons episode.
The Coffee Table Book
Kramer was never short of a good idea. This classic one, a coffee table book, about coffee tables! What a perfect conversation starter...
Kramer loses his car in a parking garage so Jerry, George and Elaine spend the afternoon looking for it. Elaine had purchased a goldfish, but unfortunately... It didn't make it home.
A very very subtle reference to the time Elaine and a former boss join forces in a muffin top business. Selling just the best part of the muffin!
Technically... Not a reference the set had intended us to find, but hey, it's LEGO. I can do whatever I want with it!
The classic look of the comedy stage in New York! The brick wall. A nice little addition to this set!
LEGO 21327 - LEGO Idea #36 - Seinfeld's Apartment
Available from LEGO.com and LEGO Stores from 1st August 2021.
Now overall, the set is a very faithful creation of the actual Seinfeld set, but there are a few gripes I have here and there with the set.
Don't get me wrong, I love the tiled floors. It looks cleaner and nicer overall, but the stud placements just don't do it for me. I'd rather blu-tac the figures down and display them that way, rather than leave them exposed as they are. It's particularly noticeable with the 1x2 jumper plate.
The second gripe is the stickers. Oh boy. There are a LOT of stickers. They're not easy to install either! The door stickers were quite annoying to put on, and the mittens on the fridge don't look right how they are and would have been better off as one sticker stretching down the side of the fridge.
Is this a good set? Yes.
Does it display well? Yes, better than the others.
Would I recommend it to a Seinfeld fan? Absolutely.
I still lie concerned with what the future holds for LEGO Ideas and the TV genre. Has this market become oversaturated? As long as future models continue to differentiate from each other as how this set has from its predecessors, then things should be okay. I wait with bated breath however for what comes next.
Thanks for reading, if you enjoyed this please leave a comment below.
This article was written by Tim & Dannii.
Find them on Instagram at @legobuildingwithtimanddannii
If you enjoy our articles, photos and videos, please show
your support by clicking below and buying your
LEGO via the affiliate links below. Thank you!
Official LEGO® Shop
Get discounts at your favourite third party retailers by using the
Coupon Code: "BrickBanter"
Check out the new book by LEGO Masters Australia
Season 1 winners Henry and Cade!
Review sets and new release announcements are provided by the
AFOL Engagement team of the LEGO Group for review purposes.
All opinions are my own.