Andrew Becraft faces a very specific conundrum: His friends keep disappearing, then, after months of radio silence, turning up in rural Denmark.
For anyone else, it might be a cause for extreme concern. For Becraft, the founder of The Brothers Brick, it's always good news, because it means his buddies are working on top-secret LEGO projects.
Becraft grew up as an American kid in Japan in the 1970s, living for the LEGO sets his grandparents would send him from the United States. He'd eagerly put them together and watch his little brother tear them apart, then repeat the process as he figured out how to build his own creations. And after a bit of college-era self-consciousness around playing with what might be perceived as children's toys, he did what any self-respecting Gen-X'er with a newly disposable income would do: leaned into his old hobby, casting off any apprehension and fully embracing his collecting.
For over a decade now, he's run the biggest Lego site in the world, which serves as a hub for news and community conversation about the ever-expanding universe of the little colorful bricks. He's written several authorized books about LEGOs via DK Publishing, and he's considered an expert on both the product and the fandom that surrounds it — which made him a perfect guest for this new episode of The Fandom Files.
In this new episode, Becraft walks us through his LEGO journey, from kid playing on his bedroom floor to author and master builder. He also tells us about the massive LEGO fan community (including why they call themselves AHOLs), explains how the LEGO corporation is handling its surge in popularity (thanks to all those movies and licensing deals), and gives us the lowdown on some of the coolest sets coming in 2019.
This episode also presents a new era for The Fandom Files in the form of several new fan-driven segments. Listen before and after the Becroft interview for these new segments, each of which you can participate in by tweeting at @FandomFilesSYFY:
- Endorsements: Fans tell us what they're really into these days, from TV shows and movies to comics and anything else geek. We start out with our own favorites, but next week it's all you!
- What the Kids Are Into These Days: Parents tell us what actual children are into these days (since we're, uh, adults talking about stuff aimed at kids). This week, Yolanda Machado explains that her daughter is obsessed with K-Pop and loved Into the Spider-Verse.
- What Are We Mad About This Week?: Little-known fact — sometimes fans get mad about stuff. Very specific stuff. Here fans have an opportunity to vent about their very superfluous but very strongly held gripes. Sound cathartic? Tell us all about why you're angry!
- Fanfiction: Fans read us their fanfiction. It's gonna get weird.
To contact us about the podcast — or to nominate yourself or someone else as a future guest! — feel free to drop us an e-mail or tweet at us. And if you like what you hear, please be sure to rate and review us on iTunes!