LEGO Harry Potter Review: Hogwarts Castle #4842

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As a kid, I never had any of the super large LEGO sets. I did get the original Mindstorms set when it first came out but other than that, the largest set I ever got was the UFO Alien Avenger. So there was never a massive castle, but after assembling the bits and pieces of a mighty fine village I knew I needed a castle overlooking it. I just didn’t expect that I needed Hogwarts.

The Dementors have the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry surrounded, and an epic battle between Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort is looming! Harry and Dumbledore face He Who Must Not Be Named while Professors McGonagall and Flitwick try to keep the school safe.

It’s no secret that I adore Harry Potter, most likely beyond the rational extent. Between the robes in my closet (and full Death Eater garb), the wand on a shelf and the desire to have all four houses’ banners hanging from my loft, I kind of really like the series. So I grabbed the latest LEGO rendition of Hogwarts and began getting to work assembling the largest LEGO set I had ever built.

With 11 minifigures in the set, you’d think this would be all any Harry Potter fan needs to get the main characters, but oddly enough I found the selection to be rather odd. Harry and Hermione are both present in their school uniforms (and therefore identical from the neck down) that were both included in Hagrid’s Hut, but Ron isn’t included.

Hermione comes with her wand, but Harry comes with three accessories: his wand, his Firebolt and his invisibility cloak. The Firebolt is just a black broomstick with a silver cone on it to make it look different. His invisibility cloak though is a weird piece of sparkly fabric that looks kind of dumb.

Several members of Hogwarts’ faculty are also included. The teacher of transfiguration, Professor McGonagall, is available for the first time in flesh-toned skin. Wearing her emerald green robes that are surprisingly ornate, McGonagall is rather mono-chromatic. Her cape, hat, torso and skirt are all cast in dark green. Her face is given crows feet and a few wrinkles to show her age but her glasses are missing. Oddly, no wand is included in the set for her.

Professor of Charms, Flitwick, makes his LEGO debut in this set as well. Some how descended from a goblin, Flitwick is given the shorter legs to make him a head shorter than anyone else in the set. He’s very well dressed, wearing what appears to be a tuxedo. His eyes are oversized from his glasses and his bushy mustache covers him mouth – he kind of looks like a LEGO Ned Flanders. His hair is a bowl cut and Flitwick comes with a brown wand.

Known for wandering the halls of Hogwarts and wanting to chain rule breakers up in the dungeon, Argus Filch also makes his LEGO debut. A squib (the reverse of a Muggle born wizard); Filch seems to hate most students at the school he’s tasked to keep clean. Wearing a tattered and worn suit with some keys hanging off his belt, the scruffy caretaker looks as unhappy as ever. His long gray hair is just like Lucius Malfoy’s.

For accessories, Filch comes with a simple lantern and a single oversized key. He also comes with his pet cat, Mrs. Norris who is painted up on the head with extra details.

Professor Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore was the headmaster of Hogwarts until Harry’s sixth year. At first glance, Dumbledore looks like he’s just wearing some pajamas. His body is beautifully ornate with periwinkle robes with silver trim over a tan undercoat. Dumbledore’s two-sided head shows him wearing his half-moon spectacles looking concerned while the other side looks happy but tired without the glasses.

Dumbledore has the same hairpiece as Filch but in a slightly darker shade of gray. The inclusion of a matching beard gives him a much different look though and it works very well. For an accessory, Dumbledore comes with a single tan rod – the Elder Wand.

Severus Snape, the Potions Master, represents the Slytherin house in this set. His simple black torso with a buttoned top keeps him monochromatic but still looking good. His black cloak works well too, though part of me wishes LEGO made an even longer cape for him.

Snape’s face is focused, but lacks any emotion. His hair is the same as the Prince of Persia only in black, which works very well for his long, greasy hair. For a wand, Snape comes with a black rod.

The Dark Lord Voldemort is rather similar to Snape. Both are wearing black robes, though Voldemort’s have a hint of green in the creases. His flowing cape wraps around him nicely. To keep up with his inhuman appearance, Voldemort has white hands and a skull-like head.

The face on the head shows a nose-less and lipless face grinning. His sunken black eyes and high cheekbones make him look evil but for some reason, Voldemort doesn’t have red eyes. For a wand, Voldemort has a white rod.

The final two figures are identical – Dementors from Azkaban! The physical embodiments of depression, Dementors feed off of happiness. To make them ethereal, they’re made out of dark gray LEGO skeletons with a special leg piece that allows them to “float.”

The Dementors’ bodies are covered by tattered cloaks and black hoods cover their heads. The Dementors have two different faces, one with just the shading of a jaw and no mouth and the other with the mouth open to perform the Dementor’s Kiss. Ghastly! To help them float, they stand on clear display stands.

Just from the figures included in this set, it isn’t really obvious when this set is supposed to take place because Dumbledore and Voldemort haven’t both been at Hogwarts together in years (provided you don’t count the incident with Quirrel). But I’m not going to argue about getting a chance to have Dumbledore and Voldemort actually duel in LEGO form!

Hogwarts itself is a massive construction but greatly benefits from the simple fact that it is entirely modular. Thankfully, LEGO numbered the bags allowing you to construct Hogwarts one building at a time.

First is the Astronomy Tower, technically this should be the tallest tower at Hogwarts but it is still impressive with three levels. The exterior of the building shows off some blocked windows, twin axes and an abundance of the sand yellow bricks that make up Hogwarts’ color scheme.

The top level consists of the observation deck with a simple, mounted telescope aimed at the heavens and a single light gray rat scurry across the floor. The rat could be Scabbers, or it could just be a rat. The middle level is the restricted section of the library with a collection of books kept behind sliding glass doors that are actually handcuffed to the walls! It’s well executed, but the constant pressure of the sliding doors cause the handcuffs to bend over time.

The ground level of the Astronomy Tower is the Room of Requirement. A magical room that’s supposed to be on the seventh floor of the castle, LEGO clearly had to take some creative license when making this castle. The room is empty except for one thing – the now fixed Vanishing Cabinet! Originally broken by Peeves in Harry’s second year, the Vanishing Cabinet was used by the Death Eaters during the first invasion of Hogwarts. To make it even cooler, it can hold a minifigure inside of it and still fully close!

The tallest tower in the set if Gryffindor Tower. The exterior is covered in stickers to give the appearance of stone (have fun applying them) and the roof with the spiraling towers gives a nice illusion of perspective.

The top level is the owlery with three owls perched. The owls aren’t specified but the white is probably Hedwig (Harry’s pet), the gray is Errol (the Weasley’s family owl) and the brown is Pigwigton (Ron’s pet owl). The ground is littered with white stubs, probably as either droppings or pelts. It’s kind of gross, but a nice subtle touch.

The third story is the Gryffindor common room which is quite similar to Slytherin’s with a fireplace, a table and two chairs. On the table rests the Marauder’s Map and a goblet. Inside the figure place though, a red tile with Sirius Black’s face can be revealed allowing him to talk to Harry – just like in his fifth year (further complicating when this set is actually set).

The second story features a suit of armor on a pedestal. It’s a fine figure and the head on it is black to make it look empty. But when the pedestal is spun around, it reveals a secret hiding place of a black book – Tom Riddle’s diary! Harry’s sock is no longer inside of it though.

The ground level is the Slytherin common room that features some majestic snake motif but is relatively plain with just two chairs and a copy of the Quibbler on a table.

The largest and most open build, of the set is the Great Hall. The exterior is gorgeous with large windows and a slanting tile roof. Thankfully, the window panes aren’t filled with glass because that would have taken forever to assemble. On each side are matching stained glass windows made of yellow and blue bricks that look great. A large door is on one end.

Inside the great hall, LEGO sadly took an easy way out and only include two of the Hogwarts’ houses – Gryffindor and Slytherin (sorry Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs). Two large banners are hanging from the ceiling along with a chandelier. At the front of the room, two chairs are placed along with a podium to address the students. Both tables are covered in delectable treats made by the house-elves like a massive cake, a roasted chicken, fresh croissants and fruit. Several golden goblets are also there to fill with pumpkin juice.

The final major build is Dumbledore’s Office, which is quite wide. The top level is relatively open with a mounted broadsword – the sword of Godric Gryffindor and the Sorting Hat waiting for another year to come. The hat is the standard LEGO wizard hat in brown, but with a face painted on it.

The second story is the Headmaster’s office with an ornate chair and desk covered in odd trinkets like a crystal ball and mounted magnifying glass. Shelves on either side are littered with potions and each case reveals a hidden drawer – one with a letter and the other with the fang of a basilisk.

The bottom floor is the school trophy room featuring a golden shield honoring James Potter and a treasure chest with scrolls. The most impressive part though is the hidden staircase that slides open to build itself.

Three small connector pieces are also built, allowing Hogwarts to be assembled how you wish. This allows the overall build to be very big. The Technic pins work very well though part of me still misses the old days when large LEGO sets had massive baseplates.

While the continuity nerd in me is horribly confused by when this set supposedly takes place, I don’t really care. This is the largest LEGO set I’ve ever purchased and I adore having a castle looming over my village. Throw in the fact that it’s got an abundance of minifigures, it’s a blast to have but if you’re getting this then you really need to grab another set to make sure you can at least get Ron to complete the trio.

Lego Harry Potter
Quidditch Match 4737

with Harry Potter, Oliver Wood, Draco Malfoy, Marcus Flint & Madam Hooch
Freeing Dobby 7436
with Harry Potter, Lucius Malfoy & Dobby
Hagrid’s Hut 4738
with Harry, Ron, Hermonie, Hagrid & Aragog
The Burrow 4840
with Harry, Ginny, Arthur, Molly, Bellatrix Lestrange & Fenrir Greyback
Hogwarts Castle 4842
with Harry, Hermione, McGonagall, Flitwick, Dumbledore, Filch, Snape, Lord Voldemort and two Dementors
Forbidden Forest 4865
with Harry Potter, Hagrid, Narcissa Malfoy & Lord Voldemort
Battle at Hogwarts 4867
Harry Potter, Neville Longbottom, Remus Lupin, Professor Sprout, Death Eater Lucius Malfoy, Gregory Goyle & a Dementor

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