It’s so strange when I think about this because I have noticed that a lot of LEGO minfigs released in the past few years have ‘not so happy’ faces. It never occurred to me that those angry faces are part of a growing minifig trend though. It’s part of a progression. The first LEGO minifigs didn’t have faces at all, then they transitioned into having happy faces and now it seems many of them are full of attitude.
The angry faced LEGO minifigs have become more prevalent since the early ’90s, according to a new study. This study comes from some extensive research by the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, which is in New Zealand. You can read the results of their study at Agents With Faces.
Dr. Christopher Bartneck, who was involved with this research, says that we shouldn’t be overly concerned about these mad minifigs though. Child’s play in general has gotten a lot more complex over the years, and the characters and scenarios that children create don’t always consist of just happy faces.
There is conflict sometimes, and some LEGO minifigs have different expressions to show their more complex personalities. After all, everyone in the real world doesn’t walk around smiling all the time. Besides, even today the happy faced minifigs far outweigh the angry faced ones.
According to the Washington Post, in order to get the information for the first graph below, the researchers “cataloged and photographed 3,655 LEGO characters released between 1975 and 2010. Then they asked 264 American adults to characterize the figures’ expressions as angry, happy, sad, disgusted, surprised or fearful.”
I can’t help but wonder if this somehow affects children in a negative way. On the other hand, it could be good. I mean, it could teach children how to role-play with real life situations. It appears that different psychologists have different opinions about it, depending on what you read. What do you think about the increase in angry faces on LEGO minifigs?
LEGO Minifigs Are Getting Angrier Faces As Time Goes On
(Click Chart To Enlarge)