LEGO 75352 Emperor’s Throne Room Diorama Review

“I am a Jedi, like my father before me.”

– Luke Skywalker

One of my favorite scenes in all of Star Wars has to be the finale of Return of the Jedi, which brings the Anakin/Vader storyline to a thrilling climax in Emperor Palpatine’s throne room on the Death Star II and also marks the end of the Emperor himself. (Let’s ignore the whole “somehow Palpatine returned!” gaff that Disney decided Episode 9 would revolve around for a minute…)

LEGO has released a few sets already depicting this scene, most recently the now retired 2020 Death Star Final Duel (Amazon) playset for ages 9+, but with the recent success of the 18+ Diorama Collection, it makes sense that for the 40th anniversary of Return of the Jedi this set would be re-released as a collector’s display set.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 Darth Vader and Luke fighting

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In this review of the Emperor’s Throne Room Diorama (link) we’re diving into the nitty-gritty details of this set, checking out its minifigures, set design, and overall value for your hard-earned cash. With a total of 807 pieces and a price tag of $100 in the United States, this set aims to provide an immersive and detailed building experience and recreation of the iconic scene. Let’s see if this set lives up to the hype for Star Wars and LEGO enthusiasts alike!

LEGO Emperor’s Throne Room Diorama 75352 Specs:

Release Date1 May 2023
Set Dimensions8″ wide x 7″ deep x 6.5″ high
Where to / Amazon
Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 being built

The Minifigures

Okay, let’s talk about the minifigures first. In this set, you’ll find three key players: Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, and Emperor Palpatine. No big surprises there, HOWEVER – missing are the two red Praetorian Guards that historically have been included in this set. Though, I can understand LEGO’s decision to omit them from this Diorama, as in the actual movie they wait outside during the whole duel.

Overall, these minifigures are meticulously designed to capture the essence of their on-screen counterparts, though to be honest not too much has changed since the already stellar lineup from the 2020 version of this set.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 minifigure lineup

Luke Skywalker Minifigure

Luke Skywalker’s minifigure is dressed his all black Episode 6 Jedi garment, sporting a black-gloved hand and an exposed skin hand. The double sided facial expressions range from neutral (almost a slight smirk) to a frown, giving you plenty of options for display. I was kind of expecting the secondary face to be the screaming-getting-zapped-by-lightning face, but perhaps LEGO decided that was a little too PG-13 for this 18+ set…? Regardless, it’s nice having the two options, and for now the slight frowny face will have to do if you pose this set with Palpatine frying Luke with lightning.

But the real highlight here is Luke’s newly updated hairpiece – it’s longer and has a textured finish, making his haircut look truer to the movies. The back of the hairpiece looks slightly goofy to me, but it’s miles better than the standard yellow hairpiece LEGO has usually given Episode 6 Luke, so I appreciate the effort.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 Luke Skywalker minifigure

Darth Vader Minifigure

Now, let’s turn our attention to Darth Vader. For the most part it’s the same new Darth Vader we’ve seen in other 2023 sets, and he’s about as good of a figure as they come – complete with a detailed torso and arm printing, a nice cape, and fantastic head detailing that nails his post-helmet face with scarring all over the back.

If I had one very small nitpick – those lights on Vader’s torso should be blue, not green like they are in the set. Oops!

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 Darth Vader minifigure

Emperor Palpatine Minifigure

Last but not least, we have Emperor Palpatine. His minifigure rocks the black robes, hood, and optional lightning bolt pieces. Palpatine’s face print offers two different expressions: mad Palpatine, and even madder Palpatine, as you can go for the downright evil face when he’s zapping poor Luke with his lightning (if you’re into that sort of thing…)

Again, one minor gripe, where are his pupils? The 2020 minifigure version had pupils, but for some reason LEGO omitted his pupils in this new 2023 version, and his eyes are just big round evil yellowish-orange circles. Not a huge deal, but it’s enough to bother me slightly. I already own the 2020 playset version, so I’m thinking about just swapping the faces out on Palpatine…

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 Emperor Palpatine minifigure

Emperor’s Throne Room Display and Playability

First off – this set looks absolutely FANTASTIC displayed. I don’t think anyone could disagree with me there. The massive window and archway around it looks stunning and features some incredible design work and build techniques.

The centerpiece of the whole set is Emperor Palpatine’s throne in the center of the window. It’s got a subtle purple lining (cool!) and can swivel a full 360 degrees, which is a neat touch. Seriously, they’ve nailed the design on this one – it’s the best LEGO version of The Emperor’s chair we’ve seen yet.

When it comes to display options for the actual scene, this set gives you some flexibility. You can position your minifigures on the lower or upper levels, with your choice of either recreating the epic lightsaber duel between Darth Vader and Luke with the Emperor lurking in the background, or you can display Luke being zapped by Palpatine with a conflicted Darth Vader looking on. It’s a reminder of one of the most memorable conflicts in Star Wars history, and it looks mighty impressive on your shelf or desk.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 duel
Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 Luke zapped by lightning

The set also throws in railings, two duty posts with those cool turquoise translucent pieces, and a small step leading up to the main throne area. Also, for those who don’t know (it’s not really advertised on LEGO’s main product page), there’s 2 clips underneath the Diorama where Palpatine’s lightning bolts can be clipped on for storage if you’re not displaying the scene with force lightning.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 lightning/electricity storage

Missing from the 2020 playset version is the stairs for Luke to escape to, the bridge where Vader’s hand is sliced off and is almost killed by Luke, and the shaft where the Emperor gets thrown down, but you know what – I don’t mind. This whole Diorama set is specifically framed around Luke vs Vader in front of Palpatine and the amazing backdrop of the throne and the window, and it absolutely nails that scene.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 back

The Display Plaques

Like we’ve seen a few times already for 2023 Star Wars releases, this set comes with the special printed brick which celebrates the 40th anniversary of Return of the Jedi. I’ve heard some folks argue that it’s a “distraction” from the main scene as it sits a little awkwardly off to the right side, but if it really bothers you, just pop it off.

Personally, I think it adds a touch of nostalgia and excitement to the whole set, especially when displayed alongside the other 40th Anniversary sets from this year, like the Endor Speeder Chase Diorama (review) and the Mini Death Star II promo (if you were lucky enough to snag one in time – if not, check eBay).

The main plaque in the middle features Luke’s iconic line as he refuses to fight Vader and stands up to the Emperor: “I am a Jedi, like my father before me.” I couldn’t imagine a better plaque for the 40th anniversary of Episode 6.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 on display

Final Thoughts

At a hundred bucks, the LEGO Star Wars Emperor’s Throne Room Diorama Set isn’t exactly cheap. But for fans who appreciate detailed builds, accurate minifigures, and a faithful recreation of an iconic Star Wars scene, it’s a solid investment. You’re getting quality pieces, unique prints, and a set that’s a treat to assemble and display. Plus, let’s not forget the nostalgia factor. If you’re a fan, it’s totally worth it.

All in all, the LEGO Star Wars Emperor’s Throne Room Diorama set is a winner in my eyes. It brings back memories of that intense showdown between Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, and Emperor Palpatine, all while delivering an enjoyable building experience. The minifigures are spot on, the throne design is impeccable, and the window and wall details add that extra touch of greatness. If you’re a fan of the Diorama series, this set is a no-brainer add to your collection.

Lego Star Wars Emperor's Throne Room Diorama 75352 box front and back

View Emperor’s Throne Room Diorama (75352)

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