Hogwarts Icons Collectors’ Edition (76391) Review
The LEGO® Harry Potter™ Hogwarts™ Icons Collectors’ Edition will now launch on September 15th in the US, Canada, and Mexico, rather than September 2nd as originally planned due to a shipping delay in the US. The set will be available for online only pre-order at LEGO.com beginning September 2nd. The product will be available in LEGO Retail stores on September 15th.
A magical new set is flying onto shelves this September with Hogwarts Icons Collectors’ Edition (76391). The latest addition to the Harry Potter theme is an impressive new build and it does not disappoint. I am a very big fan of this current Harry Potter theme. The sets are on the whole fantastic and the minifigures are better still. Surprisingly, I have only a handful of the sets, the largest sets at that! Hogwarts Icons (76391) proudly joins Hogwarts Castle (71043) and Diagon Alley (75978) in the collection (that I barely have room for…).
This set will be available for purchase online and in LEGO® brand stores on September 2nd, 2021. There is no VIP pre-sale or early access. Like other Harry Potter sets, this one is filled with easter eggs and references. Let’s dive right in and see what you get. There’s lots to cover here folks, so grab a butterbeer and get comfortable 🍺
NOTE: This set was provided by The LEGO® Group to True North Bricks for early review. This does not guarantee a favourable review and all opinions are my own. For a breakdown of the rating system, please click here.
- NAME: Hogwarts Icons Collectors’ Edition
- SET #: 76391
- THEME: Harry Potter
- COST: $349.99 CAD
- BRICK COUNT: 3010
- MINIFIGURES: 3
- RELEASE DATE: September 15, 2021
- VALUE: 84% (great cost-per-brick value, but somehow a fairly quick build for the size)
- BUILD: 94% (a wonderful build with tons of detail and charming elements)
- MINIFIGURES: 85% (only three, but they complete the 20th anniversary golden minifigures set)
- ENTERTAINMENT: 92% (a wonderful set for AFOLs with lots to admire, minimally kid-friendly)
- OVERALL SCORE: 88% (a spectacular display piece that celebrates a magical theme)
HOGWARTS ICONS COLLECTORS’ EDITION REVIEW
Hogwarts Icons is priced at $349.99 in Canada and comes with 3010 pieces. This gives us a cost-per-brick value of $0.11, for a score of 86%. This is slightly below the theme average of $0.13 and better than the overall average of $0.14 for all sets. Comparing it to the other D2C sets in the Harry Potter theme, it comes in third in value after Hogwarts ($0.08/pc) and Diagon Alley ($0.09/pc). Overall the Harry Potter theme continues to be a solid value for the money, even for larger, pricier builds.
My build time was a bit of a surprise. I expected it to take much longer but I clocked the final time at just over 5 hours or 315 minutes. I built over the course of two days and split the build more or less evenly on each day. With a seemingly shorter build time, the cost-per-minute comes to $1.11, for a lower score of 66%. This is unnecessarily low and I will weigh it less heavily in the overall score. Was I rushing? I don’t think so. Much of this score comes down to a fairly simple/repetitive set of build stages for Hedwig. And that’s not a negative – once you’re in the groove, things just proceed smoothly. A bunch of smaller builds also takes less time. The total value will therefore be a very solid 84%.
Hogwarts Icons comes to us in the 18+ packaging: a black background, greeble border and large central image of the build. I know there’s mixed feelings on this approach, but I love it. In this case the stark contrast of a snowy owl against the black is really beautiful and makes an impact. The contents include 22 numbered bags, a thicc 411 page instruction book, 3 printed plates (woot!) and a very small sticker sheet (double woot!). Bags 1-10 create Harry’s wand and glasses, the felix felicis bottle and the base of books. Hedwig and the golden snitch follow suit in bags 11-18. The final builds are the chocolate frog, potion bottles, scarves, minifigure display and the acceptance letter in bags 19-22.
We start the build with the necessary technic support structure, and it feels super solid and secure. I mean, it has to be, there’s a giant owl to support. A central column runs up through the build and around it are affixed the books and potion tray. The first book is designed as an open text and is in fact Tom Riddle’s diary. Designer Marcos Bessa did a great job of making it stand out as the base thanks to the black and gold detailing. If you’re really a stickler for details, you can swap out some of the tan plates for black ones to show the basilisk fang puncture. But you won’t otherwise see this as 2 more books are built on top of the open diary.
The details on the book builds are top-notch. The diary is designed open and the subtle slope you get from the centre down to the edges is really amazing. Speaking of the edges, there’s a fantastic detail on the pages to simulate layered paper. A series of 1x4x1 wall elements are stacked on top of one another and create a thin, spaced out series of ‘steps’ (photo below). The end result is so effective and honestly perfect. This technique was used in the Trafalgar Square (21405) architecture set to simulate stairs. It was genius then and it’s genius now. It works perfectly at this scale.
The next two books are simple ‘volumes’ (haha) that are placed on angles on top of the diary. Designer Marcos Bessa chose the colours of these generic texts to represent the house colours of Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff. The diary’s black and gold design represents Slytherin house, so everyone gets a little attention. The books are built independently with an opening that lets the central support pass through. I love the use of the fluted bricks to once again show layered paper. It’s also a nice callback to the Monster Book of Monsters (30628) GWP that used a similar design. The rounded spines and tiled cover details really create the look and feel of textbooks. Just a fantastic job all around.
The final piece of the base structure is a tray that holds the potion bottles you build later on. The details are lovely with some decorated fence details and a printed brick with ‘HG’ on it. This of course stand for Herbonius Gröttenfort, the creator of the polyjuice potion. . . . Ok just seeing if you’re still paying attention. It of course stands for Hermione Granger, and modeled on the same tray she used in The Chamber of Secrets film. It sits loose on top surprisingly, but won’t be going anywhere once Hedwig shows up. And speaking of….
Hedwig. Is. Spectacular. It is indeed, iconic. This is a masterwork in realistic brick-built animal design. The face, the feathers, the textures, they are all top-notch. It makes a statement from every angle. So many builds are unfinished or lack details from the back, underneath, etc. Hedwig is fully realized from every view and looks amazing. The addition of black tiles or plates gives just the right amount of colour and detailing for a snowy owl. The entire effect is so dramatic and artistic. There’s not much comparison to the previous Hedwig set (75979), but that one wins tons of point for the moving wings and a way friendlier price point.
The build is done in a few stages – legs, torso, head and feathers. The head rotates on a circular plate and has a charmingly expressive face. The same eyes were used in the previous Hedwig model, but now they look to scale. And that beak? So cute. The feathers are built with SNOT techniques and are just wild! The thickness gives them so much weight and impact. Each feather is also on a ball joint that rests perfectly in place for that fully outstretched dynamism. The torso is built in two connected halves which then rest on the legs on just two axle pins. It looks like it shouldn’t hold up the whole bird, but it does. Because LEGO engineering is legit.
The final builds of this amazing collection of icons are equally charming. The golden snitch looks great in metallic gold and the wings are a clever use of recoloured curved balloon panels. The potion bottles are clear cylinders filled with round 1×1 tiles in various colours with stickered labels. Each label has a number that’s a personal easter egg for set designers Marcos Bessa and Djordje Djordjevic (birthdays, etc). Harry’s wand and glasses are screen accurate and make for some fun play features. A really fun surprise is the felix felicis bottle which glows in the dark, although I don’t recall it doing that in the film. Lastly we get a really cleverly designed chocolate frog
The weakest element of the set (where points are lost) is the house scarf build that attaches to the base. It honestly feels very tacked on and not finished compared to an anatomically accurate bird or realistic book. You snap a few hinges and plates together for a very small addition that’s not very convincing. Building your favourite house scarf is a nice feature, but you are left with a bunch of extra pieces because of this. If you leave it as the Gryffindor scarf it’s a nice bit of colour and rounds out the house representation. This is definitely a minor quibble and the set overall gets top marks for a fun build.
If you’re a minifigure collector, this set will either excite you or enrage you. Or maybe a little of both. In the case of Hogwarts Icons, you get three wonderful (yay!) and exclusive (argh!) minifigures. These are the final three golden minifigures of the 20th anniversary collection. In this set you will get Professor Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall and Hagrid. Hagrid looks like a recolour of the already available figure. But McGonagall and Dumbledore are a little trickier to figure out. They look like already released figures but with subtly different elements. In either case, these are very clearly the most detailed of the nine golden minifigures you can collect. The mix of matte and shiny gold with metallic details is really amazing. It’s clear a lot of effort went into making these characters very desirable and worth the extra cost of the set.
The back of each fig has the “20 Years: LEGO® Harry Potter” logo printed on it. They also come with the new golden wand (or umbrella) and standard 3×4 display tile (in gold of course). As with all wands you get two on a sprue so you get four golden wands out of the deal. The prints on each fig are limited to the front, but these are display figures, not so much playable ones, so it’s not a cause for alarm. Neither figure comes with a dual printed face or arm printing which means they lose a few points. But again, don’t play with yer golden figs!
The real treat and probably the biggest draw for any collector is the exclusive display stand. It’s a simple thing of beauty that sees a spot for all three minifigures. Dumbledore gets the star treatment with a spot-on replica of the chocolate frog box built around him. The purple and gold is a great contrast and it’s a creative way to make a UCS style display stand. As you finish up the set, you find instructions to build two extensions to the display stand. With these add-ons you can add the 6=six other minifigures to show off the complete collection. Such a wonderful idea and I appreciate the designers making all these 20th anniversary come together with this last, big set. Now I just need to get all the rest of the gold minifigs . . . 😩
As an AFOL I loved building this set and can’t recommend it enough. It earns that 18+ category though. This is not a playset and it’s not for kids. There’s a maturity to the presentation that really wouldn’t appeal to younger builders. Happily elements like the glasses and wand add a bit of interactive fun for the younger crowd. And they are decently durable builds that can handle a little rough attention. A nice little touch is leaving a space on the acceptance letter so you can write in the name of your choosing. But I don’t think too many of us have written on our sets, so that might feel just, oh, slightly weird. Still a lovely detail though that kids will no doubt love.
The instruction book features some fun facts about the various parts of the build. After finishing each component you get a small bit of trivia. I’m a sucker for these little blurbs as they usually give you some insight behind-the-scenes. The Architecture theme instructions do the same thing and it’s just a nice bit of value-add. When something is based on real-life, it’s great to see how the actual item informed the creation of the model. To round out the anniversary celebration, a timeline of the Harry Potter theme is shown at the start of the instructions. It’s been a magical time for the Wizarding World theme and the sets have really evolved into some of the best in recent years.
I am absolutely in awe of Hogwarts Icons. I love displaying collectibles and a good deal of LEGO® is included in that. My preference has always been for larger pieces that make a statement. Having Hogwarts Castle (71043) on a shelf in my home really gets people’s attention and makes for fun conversations. There’s not doubt something similar will happen with this set. It’s an attention grabber. Even a non-LEGO® fan will recognize the artistry and care that went into designing it. You don’t have to be a Harry Potter fan to appreciate (or want) this set – but it sure is a love-letter to the franchise. Seeing something you enjoy or love expertly celebrated/recreated in a medium like LEGO® never ceases to bring a smile to your face.
And that is that my friends! It’s been a wild time writing about this amazing set and there was LOTS to discuss. If you were at all on the fence about this one, I hope you aren’t any longer. This is a must-buy for Harry Potter fans. This is really a must-buy for any fan of big, bold LEGO® sets. Offering sets with realistic brick-built animals is something I would love to see continue. Aside from the Tyrannosaurus Rex in the Jurassic Park: T-Rex Rampage (75936) set, I can’t recall any animals done to Hedwig’s level of detail and accuracy.
So what do you think? Does it make the wish list? Are you making space on the shelf as we speak? Are you mad that three amazing figures are in a high-priced set? We want to hear from you so comment below and let us know your thoughts. And, as always, keep on brickin’.
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