Lego Detective’s Office

Ever since they first came out, I have loved the Lego modular buildings — the official ones and the original ones in that style I’ve seen on Flickr. They’re pricey, though, so I’ve generally had to make do with my own EPIC takes on the Cafe Corner and the Green Grocer sets. But that all changed recently.

Thanks to my buddy Dan, I was able to get hold of the newest modular building, the Detective’s Office, at a discount rate since it fell off the back of a truck. This weekend I enjoyed putting together my first really for real building set. Here it is!

And the back:

The set is full of great details. There’s a pool hall downstairs:

A barber shop with some great lettering done in a very cool way (and check out the minifig scissors!):

And, of course, the Detective’s Office itself:

(I imagine “Brickman” is like “Smith” or “Jones” in this world.)

And here are the insides:

There are some really great building techniques here. You can’t really tell, but a lot of the walls use a half-stud offset to bring the windows in. The way the half-stud is accounted for and attached to the rest is really quite clever. As usual with official sets I’m always excited by situations where as I’m following instructions I can’t really see why something weird is going on until the moment when you realize what it’s doing and how nice the result is. It’s one of these things, like a really nice mathematical proof, that you can’t really explain to someone who doesn’t already get it.

There are six minifigs in the set. Ace Brickman, the dame, two pool players, a barber, and a cop.

But wait! The cop comes with lady hair!

The set does have some play elements. The fire escape drops down, the doors open and such, and there are odd secret passages that I couldn’t figure out until I looked at the back of the box. It turns out there are some shady dealings going on regarding cookies and the pool hall gang.

I don’t quite follow this noir tale, but I guess someone is buying cookies from their dealer, then hiding them in a barrel. The guy then sneaks into the back of the barber shop and stows the contraband underneath the stairs, where it can be accessed by another secret panel in the pool hall. I haven’t the heart to tell them that cookies are perfectly legal and cost much less than $100.

Oh and the back of the box also lets you know you can pretend the dame has to go potty.

I don’t mean to raise any alarms here at home, but now that I have a somewhat cheaper source for these, this may not be the last one I get.

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