If you saw any of the ads or trailers for the Ninja Turtle movie, you undoubtedly saw plenty of clips of the Turtles rushing
down a snow covered slope while being chased by several vehicles. It was one of the highlights of the movie and it is the
basis for one of the three Ninja Turtles Lego sets, the Big Rig Snow Getaway. The set includes a tractor trailer, and a Foot
pursuit vehicle as well as six mini figures: Leonardo, Raphael, April O'Neil, Karai and two Foot Soldiers. A semi wouldn't
be my first choice for an off road vehicle. But as someone whose first Lego set as a young child was a tractor trailer, this
set has me excited.
Packaging - 8/10The Ninja Turtle movie sets have a very similar design to the cartoon based sets. There's a large action photo of the set on the front with a banner along the top and multiple photos of the set's features on the back. I wasn't thrilled with the design on the Turtle Van Takedown set. But changing the photos to a brighter background makes a world of difference. It's just a shame that they didn't do the same for the Turtle Van set.
Sculpting/Design - 7/10The designers at Lego took quite a few liberties in designing this set, or else there were major changes to the big rig scene in the movie. (That is entirely possible.) But the changes all seem to be for the purpose of adding more value to the set, so I'm not inclined to complain too much about that. In the movie, the semi is just a normal semi with just a few supplies in the trailer. But for the set, Lego transformed the trailer into a mobile laboratory. One side of the trailer opens up as well as the roof to expose a small lab with a work station, storage for two mutagen containers and some sort of examination device with a crystal in the center. The rear third of the trailer is used for one of the play features, a mutagen launcher. So credit is due for putting something into the trailer to make it more interesting. But I really wish they would have made the back section an empty space with working rear doors so the Turtles could have ridden inside as they did in the film. And while I really like the overall look of the semi, it is way too small. It should be about twice it's current size. Had they done that, there would be room in the cab for two figures as there should be and there would be space in the lab for more than one mini figure. The also took similar liberties with the chase vehicle. Rather than just a normal black SUV or a Hummer with a roof mounted gunner station, the chase vehicle sort of combines the two and gives the SUV a gunner station that pops out of the back. Initially I was expecting the SUV to be something of an afterthought in this set. But I really like its design and the detail that they put into it. The gun turret could use some work as it doesn't raise up very far and can only point forward.
The set comes with six mini figures which is more than I would have expected. There are two of the Turtles, Leonardo and Raphael, April, Karai and two more Foot Soldiers. I would rather have seen them include Donatello in this set so all four Turtles could have been available without buying the $100 sewer lair set. And it would be nice if there was some variety to the Foot Soldiers. But otherwise I'm happy with the mini figures.
Paint/Color choice - 9/10The color choices for this set are very well done. There's nothing that sticks out as being out of place once the entire set is built. And there are enough decals included to add some nice additional detail.
Features - 5/10This is the one place where the Big Rig Snow Getaway set really seems to come up short. The SUV chase vehicle has four finger flick projectiles, two mounted on the sides and two on the gunner station. And it has the gunner station that can retract and close up the back end to hide it. The hidden gunner station is pretty cool. But the semi is a bit dull. The tractor and trailer are fully functioning. There's room for two mini figures in the cab, but one has to sit in the sleeper compartment area. The trailer can be hooked and unhooked and has a stand for when it isn't connected to the semi tractor. The trailer has a feature where containers of mutagen can be loaded into the rear third through the top and then tossed out the back at any pursuing vehicles. And of course it has the lab. While I think the lab is a neat idea, the trailer is just too small of a space in which to use it. Fortunately both the lab table and testing device can be lifted out easily so if you prefer just and empty trailer, that is an option.
Accessories - 7/10This set has a fair number of accessories. Of course there are weapons for each mini figure. Leonardo has two swords and a clip to hold them on his back. Raph has his sais. April has a cell phone. Karai has two swords. And the Foot Soldiers have a gun and two swords to share between the two of them. There are also five mutagen containers that can be used in the mutagen tossing feature or stored in the lab. The lab also has several jars, a flask, a hypodermic needle, a set of binoculars and a laser rifle. There are even clips on the wall for storing extra weapons when they are not in use.
Value - 5/10The Big Rig Snow Getaway set sells for $70. If the semi was larger so that the set could stand alone as its own play set, I'd be happier about that price. But as it is, as a TMNT collector, the semi and SUV are just decent background pieces. And out of the six mini figures Karai and April are the only ones not already included in other sets. (And Karai had such a minor role in the movie, I wouldn't care that much if we hadn't gotten a mini figure of her.) It's certainly not a bad set. But if you don't plan on getting all three of the movie based sets, this one is probably the easiest to pass up.
Happy Hunting:The movie sets are in stores now and have been for quite some time. They are also available online through Toys R Us and Lego's web sites, as well as others I'm sure. Just keep in mind that they may not stay on shelves for much longer now that the movie has run its course and the sequel won't be out for several years.