We’re hardly short of castles in the Disney Princess line, for some peculiar reason. This is one of the smaller ones: bigger than Elsa’s but far from Cinderella’s. This also means a more reasonable price point, and unlike the former, this castle is packed with characters. But first, let’s take a look at the building itself.
Well, it is a Lego Disney Princess set alright. The build is quite simple, without the clever details that Friends and particularly Elves tend to offer. Much of the front is made up out of four giant curved panels with stickers, and then a bunch of gold fluff is added. The inside has a bit more to offer and should be the main playing area: there’s the balcony with the Beast’s enchanted rose as well as the magic mirror and a spyglass to … look for wolves? A side room has the torn portrait (properly legofied) which revolves to offer a wig for some transformation action (we’ll get to that in a bit). There is also a kitchen, sentient stove included, a small bedroom and, of course, the grand hall complete with a chandelier.
Before we move on to the figures, let’s mention the parts. Fans of Pet Shop (and rebuilders of Café Corner) will be happy to hear that the set has a single 1x2x3 dark red slope for no particular reason, so that part will be in production yet another year. There is also a bunch of new gold 1×1 round plates with holes, and only a few are really necessary so the others can be replaced and used elsewhere. I also like the (stickered) stained glass window, new golden ”tooth” 1×1 plates and another of those new books introduced in Nexo Knights. Another treat for modular collectors is that the rare lion sculpture returns, if you need it for Market Street. Aside from the purple walls (which are, in fact, accurate to the movie), there are quite a few generic useful parts too, so this will be a decent parts pack once I break it down.
As always, the figures are the main reason to buy a set, and this is decent. We only get two actual figures though. Belle has a brand new dress piece which widens into a round 2×2 footprint, as well as a new haircut, but like the other princesses she has a normal, boring Friends face. Beast is a regular Friends male minidoll, although I guess we should be happy that he comes with his beast form head. Once you remove it, there’s that dull prince charming underneath, and with the wig you can recreate the final ballroom scene. However, the beast head fits well on a standard minifigure and with the recent faun legs and some Pirate torso he makes a very decent Beast, and it’s not hard to find his other outfits. The size is an issue, obviously. But I guess asking for a maxifig Beast in a Princess set is asking a bit too much.
As for the appliances, they’re all brick built, except for Mrs Potts and Chip. Lumiere looks … okayish, but his lady featherduster gives me nightmares – she reminds me of the horrible early Harry Potter faces. Wardrobe is decent but wildly off model, and Cogsworth looks way too cheery. A more accurate face would really help him. The stove actually works fine, although you see very little of him either way. No footstool though.
Overall, this set is fine but not very special. I have no idea if Beauty and the Beast is especially popular with kids at the moment, but getting a set was a nice surprise for us old fans.