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Who is your favorite Toa?


 January 8, 2005

Oh, What A Tangled Web
Mark: BIONICLE® Adventures #7: Web of the Visorak is a wonderful way to start BIONICLE off in 2005. Oh, it has its problems, sure. But something about this story has me more excited about BIONICLE than I have been in quite some time.

The TOA METRU are returning to Metru Nui to try to save the MATORAN, who have been entombed in capsules by MAKUTA in his failed attempt to present himself as their savior and win their devotion. MAKUTA is, thankfully, out of the picture for the time being, trapped himself.

As an aside, I don't know exactly where the line is in fantasy where I stop believing and I start saying to myself, "That is not right!" I am certain that it differs for everyone. For me, my suspended disbelief usually starts crashing to the ground the moment some law of physics gets mangled. For example, I always had trouble with NUHVOK-KAL levitating things by reducing the pull of gravity on objects. You can reduce the pull of gravity on an object down to zero if you want, but it is still not going to leap up into the air. For that you need to reduce its density or reverse the pull of gravity.

There is a moment early on in Web of the Visorak where I had a similar "That is not right!" physics moment. I was all set to dislike the book because of that early trip-up, some character difficulties (NOKAMA and VAKAMA are behaving more like GALI and TAHU than their earlier selves), and some other nagging issues carried over from the rest of the series. But I have to say that any problems the story has early on are more than made up for as the story progresses. For example, there is an excellent use of physics later on in the story.

And this is really the first story in the series where I think you could probably wring a good English paper out of it. There are more layers and depth here than any previous story. That is not to say that this story lacks in action. It most certainly does not. The pace is practically manic.

Add to that all of the characters. Of course, we are introduced to the VISORAK. But we are also introduced to SIDORAK, the king of the VISORAK. And we also meet ROODAKA, a treacherous villainess that on first impression makes MAKUTA look like an amateur. And then there are some cameos from some Rahi creatures you already know. If that's not enough for you, then there are always the VAHKI to keep things interesting.

It is all a bit much to squeeze into 124 pages. And that is a good thing. It feels like we are opening the door on a much, much larger universe here instead of just peeking into closets. Like any good web, this book pulls you in until your stuck on it!

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