With The LEGO Batman Movie proving popular with cinema-goers around the world, many fans are returning for second and third viewings – here is a checklist of fun visual gags and subtle references to look out for on those return visits
It’s been a couple of weeks now since The LEGO Batman Movie stormed up the box office charts. While the general consensus is that the film didn’t quite hit the lofty heights the original LEGO Movie did, it still packs a hilarious, gag-a-second script with stunning animation courtesy of Animal Logic. Beyond the non-stop laughs, there are plenty of reasons to watch it again and again – the hidden references, sight gags and Easter eggs.
If you weren’t already aware, the LEGO Batman Movie makes use of Batman’s 78 year history and manages to pack in more references than are even possible to see before the DVD release. There have already been plenty of articles written online showcasing a lot of the hidden jokes and references, so whilst my aim is not to re-list them all here, I’m instead going to point out some of my favourite ones along with some that I don’t believe have been spotted by anyone else yet – or at least weren’t published at the time of writing.
Original LEGO references:
- A tanker has Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene written along the side of it, more commonly known as ABS. To the less scientifically savvy, ABS just so happens to be the material from which LEGO bricks are made from. Although this truck appears at least three times, this is so quick that if you blink you’ll definitely miss it.
- A cinema billboard in downtown Gotham displays the titles of some screenings going on. One happens to be ’Two Shades Of Bley’. This is both a poke at ‘Fifty Shades Of Grey’ – which had a sequel released at the same time as TLBM – and also refers to the blueish tinge found in the two variations of post-2004 grey LEGO elements. The LEGO Dimensions adventure world also showed a poster which says ‘Ninjagotown’ on it in the same design as the ‘Chinatown’ movie poster starring Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway.
- The other screening mentions ‘The Bionicle Man’ and ‘Fish With Fangs’, a reference to the movie Jaws, hinting at the iconic shark that also appears in the Phantom Zone scenes.
- The truck which Harleen Quinzel drives outside Arkham Asylum has ‘Phantom’s Own’ written along the side, which is pretty well signposted, but LEGO fans will enjoy seeing the ghost originally found in classic Castle LEGO sets.
- Inside the staircase of a building Batman runs up at the Winter Gala, you’ll spot the fire logo usually found in LEGO CITY fire sets.
- When Barbara Gordon gives her presentation at the retirement party about working with Batman, one of the four core principals to learn includes ‘Ninjitsu’, which must be a nod to LEGO NINJAGO, that will form the basis of the next LEGO movie in September.
- The cameraman, seen after the events of the Winter Gala fiasco, is wearing a ‘Blacktron’ t-shirt, similar to a character’s top in The LEGO Movie.
The LEGO Movie references:
- In the lift (or elevator for our American chums) inside Arkham Asylum, there’s a piece of elevator music playing ever so quietly. Listen a bit more closely and you might recognise it as a re-worked lounge version of ‘Everything is Awesome’.
- In one scene near the beginning you’ll notice a quick glimpse of the ‘never-ending abyss of nothingness’ which is from the scene when Emmett falls through the portal into the real world.
Let us know which ones you spotted, which others you found and which were your favourites.