REVIEW 6864 The Batmobile and Two-Face Chase
Posted 11 February 2012 - 01:53 PM
As much as I've been a fan of the licensed series from LEGO, the comic nerd in me is a little deeper than the Star Wars nerd in me, and is certainly deeper than the Harry Potter nerd in me. So, the Super Heroes line is quite a kick for me, though to be honest, I'm looking a lot more forward to the Marvel line. Still, somewhere between 1986 and 1991, I was a Batman reader, and have enjoyed the exploits of the Dark Knight. And I wasn't paying attention when the first Batman line came out, so it's great to get a second chance at it. This is one of the key mid-priced sets for early 2012, so lets see how it is
Name: The Batmobile and Two-Face Chase
Theme: Super Heroes
Minifigs: 5, Batman, Two-Face, two henchmen, police officer
Price: 5,880 yen
MSP: U.S.$49.99, £49.99
I like the box art. The Super Hero font is really DC looking, and I wonder if they'll keep it when the Marvel line comes around. I'm a little irritated at the almost comic sans font in the lower left, if only because it looks like the kind of font a non-comic reader would associate with comics, but it's fair enough. I doubt most buyers will be comic readers. The TV shows and movies have a lot more impact. The concept for the picture is a little funny, since it seems that Batman is there before the crime was committed. All the same, it's professional.
An interesting point is that they are selling a version of Batman that was retired a long time ago. The Batman logo was the bat on yellow for a few decades, but hasn't been around for a while. It was taken out during the Frank Miller Batman issues, and disappeared in the 2000's (check out a neat history of Bat-costumes here )
The back isn't particularly clever. At this point, I barely consider flick-fire missiles a feature. I've heard the collectible mini-figure series seven comes with flick-fire missiles. Anyway, the winch on the truck twists.
Two books and a comic. The comic is well done enough. As people who've encountered me enough on his site might know, I take comics pretty seriously, so it seems like a pastiche of comics rather than a genuine one, but, like the font, it's to be expected. I don't buy LEGO for high quality comics.
There are four bags. Two are for the Batmobile, one for Two-Face's jeep, and the last for the bank. I don't have a lot of building time these days, so I appreciate numbered bags.
There's a sticker sheet. I can understand that it's pretty necessary in a set like this, particularly with the orange and purple pieces.
Part One - The Batmobile
I'm not so thrilled about this figure's design. The first thing is the black Batman costume, which is pretty much a Tim Burton 1989 thing. As a kid, I got why a black Batman suit was "realistic," but as an adult, I realize that you can't go into a Batman story asking for realism, and enjoy the more comic-booky suit. But, I know they can't throw the same costume into every set, so it's fine. The second thing though is a bigger design complaint, the white band on the head. I'd rather the eyes were built into the mask or something. Since this is basically the same as the last series of Batman figures, I'm sure TLG had a lot of prototypes before settling on this one, and I assume they were all less desirable. Still, this head is useless without the Bat-mask, so I don't know why they bother with the eyes.
Smiling, cocky Batman. Yeah, okay This is the back of the figure, and showcases Batman's rippling Bat-muscles.
That's an intimidating mini-fig...
And he knows it.
This is him next to one of the old Batmen I bought off of Bricklink. There is certainly more definition to his face now, cheek bones and the like. It's not a huge difference, but I'm happy that they're always adding a little more detail and styling where they can. The belt is a little bolder than before too
I think it's a little funny, but he comes with a batarang in this and other sets. It's a "comic" image of Batman.
I photographed the build of the Batmobile at every tenth step or so. It's a very dense creation. I've gotten very used to 'shell' style LEGO builds, so when I see a creation that is pure brick, at this point, I'm thrown off.
The innards are very patriotic American colors.
The pieces stack up, and the sleek little vehicle comes together.
The flick fire launcher is added early on, and set at a peculiar angle.
There are a lot of tile pieces, and in a few places, they are hard to put in. It was an interesting build.
I'm guessing because of this, a tile remover is thrown into the set. I've never seen that before.
As we go along, the Bat-exhausts and Bat-flames are added.
Around the 75% point, Batman himself enters the vehicle.
Some fins and wheels later, and we have a Batmobile. More in the final part of the review.
Part two- Two Face's jeep
Two-Face and his two thugs. I find it amusing that they based one on Eurobricks' own moderator, Stash2Stixx. Congratulations! They come with one of the new LEGO crowbars too. This is a fantastic piece, that you should get a hold of any way you can. It is designed to remove pieces, and is crucial for disassembling large SNOT-builds. It's my favorite piece of 2011
Two color printing on these guys. Again, it's a "comic" choice to have them all in orange and purple, rather than in other Two-Face designs, like black/white or something more tasteful. I'd be more satisfied with that, but I have to accept I'm not the target audience. I would have really liked Two-Face to have come with a second face print, something more fun. One of the things I like about Two-Face is his capacity for giddiness. When that coin turns up good, Two-Face needs to smile!
Two-Face comes with his coin, which is a little abstract looking. Coins are not the sort of thing that LEGO can do well.
This vehicle is not particularly surprising. It seems pretty much like a number of other LEGO vehicles from the past, except being split into two colors.
I may just be imagination-deficient, but I doubt these pieces will become MOC favorites either.
It comes together well enough, no complaints. More views at the end!
Part Three- The Bank
I have to (stupidly) confess, I didn't even see the bank on the box when I bought this. I thought it was just two vehicles. About halfway through building the jeep, I realized there was a whole other bag. This one isn't as deep as the other two are, but it's not a throw-away build either.
So, this comes with a cop. I quite like this outfit. A lot of LEGO police officers are dressed in black, so it's nice to see one done in blue
The bank is fairly bare-bones. A computer from 1980, a safe platform, that's about it.
The bank has a nice door that is new for me, sectioned in three parts.
In the back, a safe is dropped in. The last safe I saw was from an Agents set, and I think this compares well.
The Finished Product
So, as a nearly lifelong comic fan, I have to say I was fairly pleased to hold this build. There is no true Batmobile. It changes from decade to decade, and from media to media. This strikes me as an 80's-90's design. I think the fins could be more elegant, but I like the sleekness overall. In particular, I love the inner slopes from the front wheels. It really gives the vehicle a low-to-the-ground feel.
The flames at the back are a real Tim Burton addition to Batman, as far as I can remember.
It's cool, for sure.
The silhouette of the Batmobile is pretty hard to do in LEGO, since the minifigs are stocky. So, the Batmobile is a little stocky. Slightly longer, slightly narrower, and it would be perfect.
The Two-Face jeep is competently done, but it wouldn't seem out of place in the Dinosaurs line. It doesn't have a lot of character, in my opinion.
The two-color motif is hard to perfect too. The stickers help, but it doesn't look that schizophrenic.
The winch is a little chubby too.
The bank is quite good, for the size. The little pillars, the ornamentation, it's good
On the side, we have the action part. Twist that piece and...
BOOM! the window falls over. Must be shatter-proof glass.
As Two-Face's crew takes the safe away, the guard certainly questions the logic of placing a safe at the window of the bank Unfortunately, the guard has only one face, and that one doesn't show either surprise or disappointment.
The Final Verdict
Design: 8/10 The Batmobile is very well done, the jeep is truly adequate, and the bank is good for its size.
Build: 8/10 There are some interesting aspects to it, though I don't think I was schooled at any point. The two other Super Hero sets I built, the Catwoman and Lex Luthor sets, both had more enlightening techniques on display. But, I didn't find the build boring or repetitive.
Playability: 9/10 I always score higher for sets that have a built in narrative for an action set. As is, the set has targets, motives, a story. The play features are a little weak, which keeps it from having a perfect score.
Minifigures: 9/10 I think these are really good! I like the cop a lot, and the henchmen both have their own faces. Most have back printing as well. The less than perfect score is mostly because Two-Face should have two faces! And the orange-purple suits really aren't that useful outside of a Two-Face narrative.
Price: 8/10 It was a decent price considering what licensed sets are selling for these days. The Batmobile is surprisingly dense, so it was definitely in line with what I've paid for other series. It actually seems like a bit of value compared to Star Wars, Pirates or Harry Potter.
Overall: 8/10 This is a decent set. If it was year three or four of Batman, I'd probably knock it down a rank or two, but for February 2012, this is a solid set to buy. But, it's a set that isn't really applicable to MOCs or expanded builds, so it seems to be suited to Bat-Fans. I would love to see TLG respect the characters to the extent that the Batman Animated Series did in the 90's and the Arkham games did recently, which both were incredibly successful doing so. This set is sort of like a Cliff's Notes of the comic, playing up the COMIC aspect. Personally, if I were a kid, I'd like the comic-based stuff that wasn't so goofy (like orange-purple suits), but I'm not a kid. All the same, that's a gripe, and not a serious complaint. Maybe if the Super Heroes series is successful, there will be a little more true comic set
Posted 11 February 2012 - 02:11 PM
I was wondering if a review of this set was going to pop up.
This is definitely one of the best sets in the line.
EDIT: Which henchman is based on Stash2Stixx?
Edited by Mr_Malfoy, 11 February 2012 - 04:58 PM.
Posted 11 February 2012 - 02:53 PM
Posted 11 February 2012 - 02:55 PM
When these DC sets first came out here in SG, I only planned on getting one Batman set and I had three choices: the Catcyle set, Batwing set and this one. I passed on the Catcyle since I only wanted the black Batman, and between the two I chose the less expensive Batwing set over this one. For some reason, I'm a bit attached to the previous 7781 Batmobile set which I find far more superior than this. The old Batmobile is better, sleeker; I prefer the old goon van vs. this cartoony jeep; the old Two-Face is better than this version IMO; and I can certainly live without that Bank structure which is an unnecessary part of a purchase for me. I would've wanted this to be the perfect chance to get an official LEGO Batmobile after missing getting 7781, but the overall design didn't live up to my expectations so I'll just probably MOC one for myself.
Currently playing as the Sheriff Kenneth Emanuel in Tamamono's Silver City Mafia
Posted 11 February 2012 - 05:34 PM
Overall, I will think I want to get this set, mainly for the batmobile and perhaps the miniature bank.
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Posted 11 February 2012 - 06:26 PM
Posted 11 February 2012 - 07:15 PM
Posted 11 February 2012 - 08:25 PM
I almost stopped reading right there...
But I'm glad I didn't!
Great review. I really like how you took it from a Bat-Fan perspective.
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Posted 11 February 2012 - 08:36 PM
I won't be commenting on the set itself. Too much on my mind about it now.
Good day, ladies and gentlemen! )
Edited by The Penguin, 11 February 2012 - 08:36 PM.
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Posted 11 February 2012 - 08:39 PM
Oh, well what do you expect when all the money gets spent on the figures and Bat-mobile eh ?
Bat-brick On Bat-review On 'def' !
Posted 11 February 2012 - 09:33 PM
But I like the coin, it looks like a fun piece. Can you read what it says on it?
Posted 11 February 2012 - 10:54 PM
I would rate this set at a solid 3.5/5. The "Batmobile" model in this set I prefer over the previous version from set 7781, which I always felt was too long. However, my personal favorite rendition of Batman's personal ride would have to be the Bat-Tumbler, which I do hope they decide to remake as well. The small bank I find is nice and I am happy they put a civilian aspect in this set, perhaps we will be seeing more of this in future sets. The parts selection overall is good, I really like the flame pieces. As for the minifig's, well I am not a fan of the purple and orange used for Two-Face but I understand why they used it. Batman is a nice minifig, but I do prefer the SDCC version, which I believe was inspired by the recent films.
Edited by Macoco, 11 February 2012 - 10:57 PM.
Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:49 PM
Here is someone's model of it, a little more detailed than the LEGO one
Posted 12 February 2012 - 12:22 AM
Posted 12 February 2012 - 01:41 AM
Seems to a set with a lot of play features with 2 vehicles more suited to kids, for me will most likely pass on this one
Posted 12 February 2012 - 09:13 AM
Good review too, I think you captured everything really well, especially how dense the Batmobile is. I was shocked too.
Posted 13 February 2012 - 04:13 PM
I hope however this isnt the last batmobile set, there are many more vastly different and iconic designs that could be attempted. The most popular could well be the one from the 60's show. I'm not sure if that is copyrighted elsewhere in any way though? It had the flames coming out the back before Keatons did though.
Current project with my kids is to attempt one from the comics that I can best describe as a 30s/40s Chicago gangster type car with a bat shaped fender on the front. I'll try and find an online image.
Posted 19 February 2012 - 10:15 AM
I hope however this isnt the last batmobile set... The most popular could well be the one from the 60's show. I'm not sure if that is copyrighted elsewhere in any way though?
Mattel currently has licensed the George Barris' 60s TV Batmobile and others for their Hot Wheels line. I'd like to have a 60s style Batmobile to go with my blue/gray Batman.
Thanks for the great review. I like the reviewed Batmobile and hope it is available in a smaller set in the future.
Posted 27 February 2012 - 06:51 AM
It was a pretty interesting build too, which again is not always the case when constructing vehicles.
Posted 27 February 2012 - 08:24 AM
It's nice to see Batman again in LEGO production! ...last time I was in my dark age
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