With 2017 almost upon us, it’s time to look ahead and preview the many exciting LEGO themes and sets that will be vying for your attention next year.
In this series of posts, I’ll be spotlighting each theme that’s set to be released in early 2017. I will be trying to review as many of these sets as I can humanly (and financially) can to offer you a more in-depth look but I’ll most likely pass over a vast majority of sets.
In 2017, I do want to give more power to the community to decide which sets I ultimately review. So here’s where you come in – if you want me to consider any sets for review, please let me know in the comments and I’ll do my best to incorporate them into my editorial calendar.
From the trailers that have been shown off and the star-studded (heh) cast, it looks like The LEGO Batman Movie is all set up to be another smash hit and eventually become the best Batman movie ever. Yes, my money is on it being better than Nolan’s The Dark Knight.
Just like The LEGO Movie that laid the foundation for LEGO’s foray onto the silver screen, we’re going to see blockbuster support from The LEGO Group when it comes to LEGO sets.
With this first preview roundup, I’m going to take a look at the first round of The LEGO Batman sets from 2017 and share some really early thoughts. The official release date for the first wave (the remaining sets will be released in the second half of 2017) will be on 1 January worldwide.
Editor’s Note: When I started writing this piece, the product pages were still up on the Australian LEGO.com store. As of yesterday, they seem to have been taken down, along with all the new 2017 sets which was a little bizarre. Links to the product pages might not work, but they should be live when the pages get restored – possibly closer to the New Year when these sets will be available for purchase.
70912 Arkham Asylum
Minifigures (13): Batman, Robin, Barbara Gordon, Aaron Cash, GCPD Officer x2, Dr. Harleen Quinzel, The Joker, Poison Ivy, Two-Face, Catwoman, The Riddler + 1 Statue
Arkham Asylum is one of Gotham’s most famous landmarks, and also serves as temporary accommodation for Gotham’s meanest villains – because Batman is all hung up about killing his foes.
This set is the largest out of the entire first wave and packs a whopping 12 minifigures, featuring all the main Batman villains in orange jumpsuits. There’s a joke here about orange being the new Bat.
While the piece count and minifigure might be impressive, I’m on the fence about the set based on the photos provided. It doesn’t really seem like a full building, more a facade and a doll-house like back, where you have separate sections of Arkham Asylum. The price is also quite hefty, so this is one of those sets that I’ll only pick up when it gets inevitably discounted – it’s practically the same price as a Creator Expert modular building!
Hype Score: 3/5 – Buy, but wait for a sale.
70909 Batcave Break-In
Minifigures (7): Batman, Bruce Wayne, Alfred Pennyworth, The Penguin, The Rat Pack Batsuit, Scu-Batsuit, Raging Batsuit
The Batcave looks like a fun little playset, that’s quite light on the actual Batcave. A series of small vignettes or modules are connected to one slightly larger hub that looks set to contain a ton of interactive play features built-in.
The Penguin is the main villain in the set, responsible for breaking into Bruce Wayne’s secret underground lair by using a few evil (and possibly) robotic penguins armed with buzzsaws. Oh, and an updated brickbuilt giant rubber ducky!
For the second largest set in the wave, we get 4 main characters, Alfred (who is thus far exclusive here), Batman, Bruce Wayne and The Penguin, although we do get 3 additional Batsuit variants!
This set looks pretty good, especially from the minifigure department but I’m still on the fence about the actual LEGO model. The side vehicles look fun, but the main structure isn’t all that attractive in the promotional photos. I’ll be very interested to seeing this set in person.
Hype Score: 2/5 I might get it if it’s on a decent sale
70908 The Scuttler
Minifigures (6): Poison Ivy, The Joker, Commissioner Gordon, Dick Grayson, Barbara Gordon, Batman
Now this would be my top pick and one of the sets I’m most excited for in The LEGO Batman Movie. The Scuttler looks like the most impressive Bat-Vehicle ever purely because of its outrageous and over-the-top design. It’s a four-legged mechanical behemoth that I lovingly nicknamed the BAT-AT.
From the photos, it looks pretty sizable and it looks to feature tons of joints, allowing you to pose it in a whole variety of positions which is cool.
The minifigure lineup also looks incredibly promising, especially Dick Grayson’s powder blue tuxedo, Commissioner Gordon in full ceremonial police uniform and of course Poison Ivy looking all bad-ass with her awesome new hairpiece. I’m going to snag this one as soon as its on the shelves for a review – it just screams fun.
Hype Score: 5/5 Definitely picking this one up
70905 The Batmobile
Minifigures (5): Man-Bat, Kabuki Twin x2, Robin, Batman
What would a Batman Movie be without a brand spanking new Batmobile. This is probably the most un-Batmobile, Batmobile ever, but I do like the overly exaggerated monster tyres and the fins at the back. The red and black colour scheme is also a pretty good combination.
While the photos suggest that it’s quite a large model, I’d really like to see what it looks like in person before coming to a conclusion, but I like what I see so far.
The minifigure lineup is a little lacking – you’re probably going to end up with dozens of Batman minifigures after you’re done with the team, and the villains in The Batmobile set aren’t the most exciting – especially given that Man-Bat looks mostly unchanged from his 2014 debut in Man-Bat Attack.
That said, it’s a Batmobile, and you can never go wrong with a Batmobile.
Hype Score: 3/5 Decent buy, but will be better if its on sale
70907 Killer Croc Tail-Gator
Minifigures (3): Tarantula, Zebra-Man, Batman + 1 Killer Croc Big Fig
This set also looks like a winner for me. Firstly, you get a massive ute (pickup truck for you yanks) that also looks like a monster truck. The build actually looks quite solid, and it seems like it has tons of cool little Easter egg, including what I believe is a printed Magic 8 Ball!
The minifigures are also pretty decent albeit obscure, Tarantula and Zebra-Man are two villains that I’m not particularly familiar with but I do like their designs.
The titular character, Killer Croc however, steals the entire show. It’s a bigfig which I love AND it has a crocodile head. Instead of giving us a mean-looking crocodile head… I love, love, LOVE that they’re using the classic LEGO crocodile as his face. It just looks so goofy that I have to have it.
Definitely looking forward to this set when it gets released.
Hype Score: 4/5 Definitely picking this one up, but not immediately
70906 The Joker Notorious Lowrider
Minifigures (3): The Joker, Harley Quinn, Batgirl
- 70906 The Joker Notorious Lowrider [US] – US$49.99
- 70906 The Joker Notorious Lowrider [AUS] – AU$89.99
This was one of the first few LEGO Batman Movie sets revealed and has been lovingly dubbed by fans as The Joker’s Pimpmobile. The purple Cadillac-inspired model features The Joker livin’ large alongside his sometimes on, sometimes off again partner Harley Quinn. Acting as the third wheel is Batgirl in her lovely retro yellow and purple costume.
The Joker Notorious Lowrider was one of the four LEGO Batman Movie sets released early and from what I’ve heard online so far, is one heck of a set!
My only gripe with this set is its relatively high price, especially in Australia. AU$90 for a sub-500 piece set is a little crazy, especially since Harley Quinn is the only real exclusive minifigure. For some strange reason, this set’s price seems to be one of the few outliers among the whole team.
I’ll be reviewing this set soon, so keep an eye out for it!
Hype Score: 3/5 Might be better off waiting for a decent sale
70911 The Penguin Arctic Roller
Minifigures (2): Batman, The Penguin
For the second “Pimpmobile”, we have this gorgeous looking vehicle courtesy of The Penguin. The design of this old retro-style car alone is worth picking this set up as the curves and the colour scheme just scream class.
It’s one of the smaller sets in the wave, but I think it represents excellent value based purely on the strength of the model’s design. The minifigures are nothing to shout about, but it is a cheaper way to get your hands on The Penguin if you want to skip the Batcave.
At AU$50, with only 25% less bricks than the Joker’s Notorious Lowrider, it also seems like a lot better value for money.
Hype Score: 5/5 Insta-buy for me
70904 Clayface Splat Attack
Minifigures (2): Batman, Mayor McCaskill
Clayface isn’t a Tier 1 Batman villain, but this insane brick-built model of him is definitely shaping up to be a Tier 1 LEGO set. The design is all sorts of crazy. and I love that LEGO have managed to capture the clay-like texture just right.
It looks like a blast to build and after seeing it built by LEGO’s Kevin Hinkle (former LEGO Community Manager, Americas) on his Instagram, it has cemented my opinion that this looks like one of the boldest and most creative designs out of the LEGO Batman Movie.
It’s pretty attractive price-point also does heaps in making this one of my most-wanted sets from the theme.
Hype Score: 4/5 – Going to pick this one up on day one.
70903 The Riddler Riddle Racer
Minifigures (5): Batman, The Riddler, Magpie, Calendar Man, Kite Man
This looks like another potentially good set at a great pricepoint. Getting 5 minifigures, 3 of which are lesser known Batman villains which seem to be exclusive to this set is a pretty good deal. Till this day, I refuse to believe that Kite Man is an actual Batman villain. The 1960s were a strange time.
I’m also very excited about Calendar Man, who features heavily in one of my favourite Batman comic books – Batman: The Long Halloween. It also helps that his calendar cape looks so dorky.
Riddler and his car look like a decent combo, and with 5 minifigures in a AU$50 set, that spells pretty good value, despite the relatively low piece count.
Hype Score: 3/5 – A decent set, but I won’t be in a rush to pick this one up at full price
70902 Catwoman Catcycle Chase
Minifigures (3): Catwoman, Robin, Batgirl
This set seems to be a nod at 6858 Catwoman Catcycle City Chase which was one of my first LEGO sets after returning out of my dark ages and one of the earliest reviews on this blog! It’s really funny reading it now. I’ve come a loooong way in four years in terms of writing reviews.
Anyway, this set is one of the smaller sets in the wave and sets you up with 3 major characters. It’s one of the most inexpensive ways to get Batgirl and Robin, and I believe Catwoman in her suit is exclusive to this set.
The actual model doesn’t really scream “buy me!” as Catwoman’s Catcycle doesn’t really look that attractive, and you get a small street corner that is the subject of Catwoman’s heist.
The minifigures in this set will ensure that it sells well enough, but this being one of the cheaper sets makes buying this a relative no-brainer.
Hype Score: 3/5 – Not the most exciting set, but the minifigures are decent enough to carry it.
70901 Mr. Freeze Ice Attack
Minifigures (3): Batman, Security Guard, Mr Freeze
The final three sets in this preview are interconnected, as you can combine 70901 with 70900 The Joker Balloon Escape and 70910 Scarecrow Special Delivery to build one larger model.
I will be sorely disappointed if the Mr Freeze in the LEGO Batman Movie doesn’t exclusively communicate in icy puns ala Arnold Schwarzenegger’s take on everyone’s favourite sub-zero Batman villain. This set looks like a pretty good small set, you get Mr Freeze in a mech suit and a tiny little mechanical section that looks like some sort of power plant or facility.
Mr Freeze has a kickass piece of armour (the minifig, not the mech) but I’ll only likely pick this one up when it goes on discount.
Hype Factor: 2/5 – I’ll buy this when it goes on sale
70910 Scarecrow Special Delivery
Minifigures (3): Batman, Security Guard, Scarecrow
The second set in the 3-set combo is probably the weaker one. We get Scarecrow, who for some bizarre reason is dressed up as a Pizza Delivery driver sending Pizza to the Gotham Energy Facility.
Compared to the Mr Freeze set, this one looks really light on details. Apart from Scarecrow and his Pizza Delivery bike-thingie, there’s really not a lot to get excited about here. Sure, you get Batman, but if you commit to buying several Batman Movie sets… you’re probably going to be sick of the caped crusader very, very soon.
It’s not the most exciting, and I’ll likely only wait for this to go on clearance or if I can get it at a very good discount to pull the trigger on it.
Hype Score: 1/5 – It just looks lame so I’ll wait for it to go on a clearance sale.
70900 The Joker Balloon Escape
Minifigures (2): Batman, The Joker
The smallest set in the LEGO Batman Movie theme is probably one of the best in terms of overall value. You get Batman and the Joker, and just enough parts for it to look decent enough. For those on a tight budget, this is an excellent set to get your hands on two key characters from the movie.
Combine this with 70902 Catwoman Catcycle Chase and you’ll have all the main characters from the movie. The low price-point will probably make this one of the best-selling sets and is an excellent “gateway” set for those new to LEGO, or the LEGO Batman Movie.
Hype Score: 4/5 – A great set for a great price
So that’s it for my The LEGO Batman Movie preview! Do note that there are more LEGO Batman sets coming in the second half of the year, which will likely include some missing key characters like the bigfig Bane and tons of other characters that probably haven’t been revealed by trailers yet.
Are you excited for The LEGO Batman Movie sets? Let me know in the comments which ones are the one that you’re most looking forward to!