LEGO® Space:1978-1992 [Book Review] Christmas sorted for fans of LEGO Space?

As a kid growing up in the 70s, I was a little excited about the idea of space travel. I missed the moon landing: The Apollo programme had drawn to a close, Skylab was preparing to burn up in the atmosphere above Western Australia, and we were eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Next Big Thing in space travel – the Space Shuttle.

And so it is into this milieu that as LEGO® Minifigures were unleashed on the world, that we had worlds of Castle, Town and Space unleashed on the world. Past,Present and Future. One had a passing interest, one was the mundane and every day and the other captured my imagination from the moment I saw the catalogue that read “… coming in 1979.” I may not have had many space sets as a child, but the ones I had I could still assemble by heart after 40 years, as I emerged from my dark ages and returned to my childhood LEGO Collection. Of course, while 1979 was the release date in Australia and Europe, a limited range was released in The USA in 1978.

As I have continued to explore the worlds of LEGO Classic Space and beyond, I have seen it through old catalogue scans, battered box photos and crumpled, stained instructions, while cleaning the dust and grime off bulk lots of elements, assembling weathered spacemen and wondering if I need to get my glasses cleaned.

When I saw early mentions of Tim Johnson’s book “LEGO Space: 1978-1992” turning up for preorder on Amazon, I was excited. Tim is a passionate fan who grew up in a similar era to myself and, as a self confessed parts nerd and founder of the website NEW ELEMENTARY, he was always going to bring some interesting insights to the project.

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The Age Of LEGO® Space Factions: 1987-1999

In the previous article in this series, we looked at Classic Space – and what might define the theme: More than the colours, the sets of this era were united in working together for a common goal: exploring, mining and drinking oversized cups of coffee, while wearing their spacesuits inside. We have ships, bases and rovers, with a variety of colour schemes passing by over the years.

By the time I got to 1987, I had completed school, and was just starting off at university. My brother had recently stopped playing with our bricks, and they were put into storage – to be retrieved as we both gained children of our own. I was well and truly into my Dark Ages. All I know has been derived from fellow AFOLs, catalogs, the brickset database and picking up the occasional set or three along the way.

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