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LEGO The Joker Manor – yay or nay?

by admin on December 3, 2017

in LEGO Super Heroes

One of the most interesting sets that were released for this holiday season is the #70922 LEGO Batman Movie The Joker Manor. It is big, colorful, and looks very fun. I don’t know when any of our contributors will have a chance to get the set, so we can publish a hands-on review, but in the meantime, I wanted to share with you a couple of very interesting videos. They should help you make a decision if you have been considering purchasing the set. 🙂

First lets start off with the official description, so you have all the stats in front of you: Help Batman, Barbara Gordon, Alfred Pennyworth (in his classic Batsuit) and Nightwing regain control of the jokerized Wayne Manor with this massive The LEGO Batman Movie set. The Joker Manor is packed with iconic details from the movie and cool functions, including a rollercoaster encircling the whole building, a huge buildable The Joker head with trapdoor and slide, punching boxing gloves, a rocking ‘The Joker’ sign and rotating ‘big eye’ tower. The interior includes a cinema room with a romantic DVD element, kitchen with buildable microwave plus lobster and lemon-slice decorated tile elements, living room with a buildable grand piano, fireplace and bust, swimming pool room, and a music studio with guitar element and buildable mixing desk and loudspeakers. Build this magnificent manor and then recreate your favorite scenes from the movie. Includes 10 minifigures: The Joker, Batman, Barbara Gordon, Harley Quinn, Nightwing, Alfred Pennyworth Classic Batsuit, Disco Batman, Disco The Joker, Disco Batgir and Disco Robin. The Joker Manor measures over 21” (55cm) high, 25” (66cm) wide and 10” (27cm) deep. Rollercoaster train measures over 1” (3cm) high, 5” (15cm) long and 1” (3cm) wide. 3444 pieces. Price: $269.99 – BUY HERE

The first video I wanted to share with you is with LEGO Senior Designer Marcos Bessa, and LEGO Graphic Designer Paul Turcanu. It is not just the standard designer-video we are used to from previous set reveals, but a more indebt look at what goes into designing and building a large and complex set like this. I actually quite like this new video style, as it goes into more detail about the creative process. And I also like to hear personal stories from the designers, like what Marcos shares in the video. It makes purchasing a new LEGO set a more intimate experience than just buying a product, as we get to know a bit more about what the designer went through to create it.

While I haven’t had a chance to build the set, I really like the overall look and color combinations. The whole set has a sort of jumped-out-of-the-pages-of-a-comic-book feel to it. The Joker sign above the entrance, the HA! HA! sign to the side, the rollercoaster, and the bright and beautiful color-combinations of The Joker over the more muted colors of Wayne Manor, all make this set a piece of art. And the backside of the Manor with more fun details and colors, and clever small builds make it look good from every angle. So, being happy with what I saw, I was very surprised that JANGBRiCKS’s review on the set is quite negative (watch below).

I’m sort of torn after watching JANG’s review. I still very much like the look of the set, and I think it makes a wonderful and very colorful display-piece, with some fun play-features. I do understand at least some of JANG’s points though, especially that a set of this size and price could have been better balanced as far as what you can do with it. I think if LEGO designers would have made it possible to transfer The Joker Manor into the regular Wayne Manor with alternate instructions, that would have added the additional value LEGO fans like JANG are looking for.

I do feel like JANG’s review on this set is kind of harsh though (which is surprising, as he is usually more positive and even forgiving in his reviews). Even with some faults, I wouldn’t call this set “severely limited and dominated by compromises”, or say that “it doesn’t accomplish anything particularly well”. I think it looks awesome, and represents well what LEGO is all about; colorful, fun, and beautifully detailed. But again, I haven’t build it as of yet. And of course, I don’t always have to agree with JANG (although I usually do, and I very much appreciate his reviews).

What do you think? Do you have The Joker Manor already? Have you built the set yet? Or are you planning to get it? How do you like it? Would love to hear your thoughts and feedback, so feel free to share and discuss in the comment section below! 😉

And you might also like to check out the following related posts:

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

jjava December 3, 2017 at 10:19 AM

I bought the set as soon as it was released. So it was before Jang’s and LEGO official videos. As soon as I found out that Marcos is the designer behind it, I already knew what to expect. And watching Jang’s video just confirms it. He is by far my least favorite designer (of the big sets). I feel that he tends to use too many pieces to build the facade. For display purposes, that’s great. But for functionality and playability, not so good.

But since I am using it in my amusement park, the facade and the roller coaster is the selling point for me. So in this case, it serves the purpose I want it for. But for others, it is not so good at that price point.

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admin December 3, 2017 at 10:47 AM

Very interesting observation. I also pay attention to who is in charge of designing particular sets and themes, because designers definitely have their own styles, and some I like more than others. Just want to make sure you are aware of the list of sets worked on by particular designers at Brickset, and maintained by either the designers themselves or sometimes another member. It is a very useful feature (see: https://brickset.com/bricklists/featured). I could see this set working very well as a ride in an amusement park. Great idea! 🙂

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brickmaster December 3, 2017 at 11:10 AM

I wonder if it is a good business practice for Lego to give designers so much influence that their style can be clearly seen in the sets they work on. While in general it could be a good thing, it could also backfire if the designer leaves for some reason. For example, what would happen if Jamie Berard is no longer in charge of designing the modulars?

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DavidH December 3, 2017 at 11:55 AM

Aren’t there a couple of Modulars already that were not designed by Jamie? I vaguely remember the Palace Cinema and Town Hall being designed by others.

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jjava December 3, 2017 at 1:52 PM

Yes, Jamie doesn’t design all the modulars. Astrid designed both Palace Cinema and Town Hall. He is just the lead of the creator expert line. I am a huge fan of Jamie’s work.

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Håkan December 3, 2017 at 4:51 PM

Well, there’s only a fraction of the consumer base that knows and cares about designers, and there’s an extreme competition for the designer jobs there are, so it’s doubtful a designer leaving would have a lot of impact, when the jobs already are so attractive.

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RONNY December 3, 2017 at 10:24 AM

You are “thorn”? 😉

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admin December 3, 2017 at 10:58 AM

Thorn… torn… same difference. Forgive my auto-correct. 😀

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Legostuff71 December 3, 2017 at 12:33 PM

I watched Jangbricks video on this set and I agree that it’s better for display than for play . The inside the manor is hard to get in for play ability. Now if was made that it can change from one to the other . That would be cool. However, so far I’ve been avoiding Batman movie sets because I have so many of the older Batman sets . But , I am start to fall under pressure because the sets are kinda fun looking . The dark night side is starting to win.

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LegoMom December 3, 2017 at 4:18 PM

So many great colors! I would really like to see an Elves set of this size with all those greens and pinks and purples!

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Will December 3, 2017 at 4:28 PM

In a lot of ways this set reminds me of the Classic TV Series Batcave. The price is just a bit higher than what is easy to afford and doesn’t hit anything out of the park.

I’ll probably end up getting it, but it will probably be farther down the weait list.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see this go on sale later down the line.

With that said, it looks interesting to build even if it has play limitations in the end.

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Julien December 4, 2017 at 1:09 AM

I wasn’t attract by this set the first time but after a few reviews it’s now on top list. And i think too in a few months we’ll find it on sale on Amazon by example… Or in January on the LEGO website 🙂
I’ll make my definitive opinion after the construction. It was the same for the set Batcave series 66 ref 76052, i was 50/50 but after the construction i love it, to play and display…

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