“jump up, kick back, whip around and spin”

ninjago gold dragon
That confusing sounding title comes from the theme tune of Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitsu, a show that my six-year-old son absolutely loves. Which means of course I have to love as well, and I’m fine with that. Admittedly I couldn’t figure out those lyrics on my own; I had to actually google them, to get it right and not look the inevitable fool. That’s how it is when you’re a dad, you get to be immersed in the culture of being a six-year-old (as opposed to the rest of my time, spent reading comics, watching football and Star Wars and drawing pictures of Iron Man and Magneto). The best bit is all the Lego though, and this Christmas just gone (and his recent birthday) was very Legocentric. I have built a great many highly complicated Lego sets, many of which I have also been drawing pictures of afterwards in the sketchbook devoted to my son’s things; you’ll have seen some already.
ninjago gold mech
The top one is the Golden Dragon, piloted by none other than the Gold Ninja. That was a satisfying one to build, and I built it really quickly on Christmas Day. The gold doesn’t stop there. Next up is the Gold Ninja Mech, which came with the Temple of Light set. I sketched this one because who doesn’t love drawing big robots, and I showed it to my son who, while he did like the robot, basically highlighted my ignorance of the Ninjago genre by having Sensei Wu (the bearded fellow with the stick, a kind of Lego Mr. Miyagi) piloting the thing. Oh no, it should have been the Gold Ninja, he said, Sensei Wu doesn’t have a Mech. But, but the Gold Ninja’s already flying the Golden Dragon, I protested. I’m not drawing it again.
ninjago kai fighter

So for the last one I drew the Red Ninja Kai-Fighter, and I left it pilotless. I do know the Red Ninja (known as Kai) flies this and I have even seen the cartoon, but knowing me I will probably get the version of his uniform wrong or something. Listen, if you think young kids don’t pick up on tiny tiny details you’re wrong. I still remember years ago when my son pointed out a slight difference between the Lightning McQueen on his diaper to the one on his night-light, a detail so small only a highly trained supreme intellect would notice. I was the same. At age four I was counting vertebrae on dinosaur skeletons at the Natural History Museum and pointing out errors to the scientist tour-guides, nowadays I can barely remember the dinosaur’s names. Diplocerataurus Rex, right? Tell you what though, I’m good at this Lego lark now though. More has been built since, and there’s more to draw.