LEGO produced a superb selection of Toy Story sets during 2010 and the celebrated theme has returned this year, albeit with 4+ branding. This decision to focus upon younger fans is ideal for certain themes but its application to Toy Story has divided opinion.
Nevertheless, the range looks quite interesting and I was particularly drawn to 10766 Woody & RC. The set contains a new Woody minifigure with some Green Army Men and it seems reminiscent of 7590 Woody and Buzz to the Rescue which I enjoyed very much as a child. Hopefully this set will be similarly impressive.
Unique heads and longer legs were created for the original Toy Story range but this version of Woody conforms to the proportions of a standard minifigure. That has elicited some disappointment but I think the updated design looks great, featuring a combined hair and hat element which compares favourably with the source material. The double-sided head includes two smiles which look nice but an alternative emotion would have been welcome.
Woody's yellow shirt and cow print vest look marvellous here, improving upon the minifigure from 2010 in my opinion. However, his badge no longer reads 'Sheriff' which is disappointing. Pixar characters are often different sizes and LEGO understandably attempts to represent that in certain situations, although the elongated arms and legs have never appealed to me. I am accordingly satisfied with this minifigure, despite its proportional inaccuracies.
Three tiny Green Army Men are included too, along with a spare. They were represented by standard minifigures in 7595 Army Men on Patrol but these green nanofigures are more appropriately scaled for interaction with other characters, such as Woody and RC. Unfortunately, there is no printed detail but I think the plain green works reasonably well.
The Completed Model
Andy's remote-control car, RC, is certainly the focus of this set but some smaller accessories are also provided. These include six colourful blocks and three cones, presumably forming obstacles for RC or simply an environment for the vehicle to navigate which is excellent for play. Moreover, the blocks and cones form a lovely backdrop for displaying this set.
7590 Woody and Buzz to the Rescue included a fantastic rendition of RC and this model looks simple by comparison. Numerous important features of RC are replicated here, such as his lime green colour scheme and water splash patterns, but several others are absent. For instance, the car should include larger rear wheels and an enclosed cockpit but the designer has instead left space for a minifigure.
That is not entirely surprising and improves the play value, providing an obvious place for Woody to sit while controlling RC. I appreciate the matching design of the aerials on RC and his controller while the printed components look wonderful, featuring three different shades of blue. The eyes are also printed but their position is awkward and the bumper lacks detail. The latter issue is especially frustrating as a perfect piece already exists.
Despite its inaccuracies, RC is certainly an enjoyable toy. The entire vehicle is constructed around a large chassis element so it feels remarkably tactile and robust. The only exception is the white aerial which can be detached accidentally. Furthermore, the wheels can turn and there is adequate ground clearance for playing on carpets or rough surfaces.
10766 Woody & RC is evidently aimed towards young children and in that respect it is successful. The primary model seems fairly robust and I think the price of £8.99 or $9.99 is very reasonable. Moreover, the new Woody minifigure looks good in my opinion. The original design offered superior accuracy but represented a considerable departure from traditional minifigures so I favour the modern version.
However, I think LEGO made an error by choosing to devote the entire Toy Story 4 range to 4+ models. Toy Story is enjoyed by children and adults alike so standard sets, perhaps accompanying some which are intended for young children, might attract a broad audience. Unfortunately, these 4+ sets offer little to interest older children or adults which seems like a missed opportunity.
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