In these dark times every new magazine is almost a reason to rejoice just for making the release date and being on the stands on the planned day. So here we go again with the LEGO Friends magazine for November, a certainly rather weird issue this time.
Around this time of year it’s usually pretty much a given that we would get a Christmas-themed issue that either would be centered around gift-wrapping or baking, even more so since here in Germany the mag only comes out every other month and factually this is the Christmas edition therefore. However, baking pizza of all things? That is just a weird choice, no matter what.
The topic is carried through consequently throughout the issue in the comic and the activities, including some pizza game where you need to collect your slices (they are printed on another page and need to be cut out) by throwing dice and whoever has the first complete one wins. Additionally there are some other activities involving e.g. pizza-based math (Now that was too obvious, wasn’t it?) and a bit of info. Even the pseudo-advertorial by ways of a double page on the Heartlake City Restaurant (41379), essentially a pizza restaurant in Mediterranean style, fits the through-line. I don’t even mind that much this time, though, as it’s a really good set at least.
Fittingly, of course the extra buildable parts have to be a pizza oven and a small kitchen workbench. This is nothing you haven’t seen before, including in the old Heartlake Pizzeria (41311) or for that matter pretty much any food-themed Friends sets. It’s literally just your run-off-the-mill standard builds. It would be nice if they at least shook up the formula every now and then with some nice new prints or something as revolutionary as a genuine ketchup dispenser/ bottle for instance.
Interspersed in all that eating madness are some pages built around this year’s Jungle Rescue theme, most notably a coloring page and one of the posters. Getting the outlines colorized properly on that kind of paper is probably a bit of an exercise, but at least it should keep you kids busy for quite a bit.
For the poster the obvious statement would have to be “If only they had focused on the animals only!”. Seriously, I’d totally hang this on my wall if only the girls would have been left out. The animals are that cute!
All in all this is certainly a strange issue. As someone who eats pizza only once every blue moon (I’m really not getting much out of it and I don’t like cheese) this is missing the mark and then of course there’s that thing with the reduced publishing cycle here in Germany. It might have been more palatable (no pun intended) if we had an actual Christmas issue to look forward to in December…