review: Mega Bloks SpongeBob SquarePants Bike Racer (CNF66)

cnf66-box

We return to the briny depths of the ocean with a look at yet another SpongeBob Squarepants Mega Bloks set, and this set features the title character. As I mentioned in my previous review, I am wholly ignorant of SpongeBob lore; so I have no idea if this set is inspired by any part of the official canon. It was on sale, though, and the set’s core build looked interesting enough. What do you say we get to reviewin’, mateys? Batten down the hatches! Dive! Dive!

cnf66-contents

Included with the instruction booklet, you rceive two bags of parts. SpongeBob comes preassembled in a plastic tray.

 

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I was prepared for a few specialized parts like the one pictured above before building this set, but I believe this one takes the cake when it comes to nonstandard pieces. Mega Bloks seems to tool a new part whenever they can’t figure out how to build something with their existing pieces  (which is often), and it seems as though they give little thought to the reuse of those new parts in other sets. It doesn’t speak well of the talent of their design team.

cnf66-bike-x3

Of course, there’s no arguing with results. The motorcycle and sidecar look pretty good. The tires are actual rubber, and the design on the gas tank is printed. The only major complaint that I have about the bike has to do with the handlebars. They’re far too loose, and tend to swing freely. Handlebars and the cheap plastic wheel on the sidecar aside, it’s a decent build.

cnf66-minifig

Here’s a closer look at SpongeBob. I have no idea if his costume comes from any particular episode of the show, but he looks like a rather tough customer (at least as tough as a sponge can look). SpongeBob shares the same level of articulation as his friend Patrick – ball-jointed shoulders, no bending at the waist, and no leg articulation.

cnf66-snail-1

Wikipedia says this is SpongeBob’s pet snail Gary. Good gravy, it is hideous! Just stare into those beady orange eyes! I can’t entirely fault Mega Bloks for the ugliness of the build. The fault mostly lies with the design of the character. It is a snail, after all. Still, those eyes!

cnf66-snail-2

Why, look, it’s popular film star Princess Unikitty! There’s no real point in my comparing Unikitty to Gary, aside from pointing out that they’re both brick-built creatures. I just wanted something cute to offset Gary’s unnerving thousand-mile stare.

cnf66-complete

Conclusion

The original retail price for this set is about USD$10. If you’re a fan of the show, that may be a fair price to pay. However, I am glad to have paid considerably less than full retail for this set. The motorcycle and sidecar are a satisfactory build with the exception of the loose handlebars (not that SpongeBob can grab hold of them). SpongeBob’s pet Gary is equally sound from a structural standpoint. It’s just that horrid little thing is so aesthetically unappealing.  Still, Gary’s ugliness isn’t necessarily a dealbreaker. I have no regrets, but I wouldn’t necessarily recommend that anybody who isn’t already a SpongeBob fan buy this set unless it’s super cheap.

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