Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu

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Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu
Lego Ninjago - Masters of Spinjitzu logo.svg
Genre Action, Comedy, Science Fantasy, Martial arts
Written by The Hageman Brothers
Directed by Michael Hegner
Justin Murphy
Voices of Jillian Michaels
Vincent Tong
Michael Adamthwaite
Paul Dobson
Brent Miller
Kirby Morrow
Kelly Metzger
Mark Oliver
Brian Drummond
Michael Kopsa
Ian James Corlett
Kathleen Barr
Scott McNeil
Composer(s) Jay Vincent & Mike Kramer
Country of origin
  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • Canada
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 5
No. of episodes 54 (list of episodes)
Production
Producer(s) Erik Wilstrup & WILFilm
Running time 22 minutes
Distributor Cartoon Network
Release
Original channel Cartoon Network
Original release January 14, 2011 (2011-01-14) – present[1]
Chronology
Related shows Legends of Chima

Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu is an action comedy family animated TV series that centers on the adventures of six ninjas. The series is based on the Lego toy series of the same name.

Two pilot episodes were shown on Cartoon Network on January 14, 2011, sometimes split into four episodes. Due to the popularity of the pilot episodes, the first season was launched from December 2011 – April 2012 alongside a new line of sets marketed as "Rise of the Snakes". The pilot episodes were released on DVD in March 2011, and the first season became available on DVD in Region 1 on June 26, 2012.[2] The series as a whole has an estimated budget of kr 37 million[3] (approximately £4.6 million or US$$6.7 million.

Season 4 premiered on February 23, 2015 in North America and Great Britain on Cartoon Network.[4]

On June 8, Lego released the trailer for the 5th season called Ninjago Possession.[5] The new season will premiere on June 22 on Cartoon Network Poland.[6] It will also premiere on June 29 in America.

On July 12, the show's writers met at SDCC 2015 and revealed minor info about Season 6 which has not gone public yet. In the next season, the ninjas are on the run and hiding. There might also be a new ninja next season.[7]

Overview[edit]

The show is set in the fictional world of Ninjago, a place inspired by Chinese and Japanese myths and culture. The land is divided between Ninjago proper and the Dark Island, where the Overlord resides. It has an underworld, where beings of evil like Lord Garmadon and the Skullkins dwell, together with sacred places where many things are hidden or forgotten (like the Serpentine tombs or the Golden Weapons). Similar to Lego's past product line Bionicle, the main characters are in tune with certain elemental properties (the elements in this case being Fire, Ice, Lightning, Earth, and Creation.) While featuring several historically designed buildings and traditional clothing, Ninjago is a modern setting incorporating large metropolises with skyscrapers, current-age (and futuristic) vehicles, modern electronics and semi-robotic exo-suits; among other temporal displacements.

Plot[edit]

The pilot episodes feature Sensei Wu struggling to train four young Ninja in the ways of an ancient battle art called Spinjitzu (which manifests as an elemental spinning movement faster than any normal fighting style) to defeat Lord Garmadon, ruler of the Underworld and Wu's brother, and stop him from gaining The Four Golden Weapons, which would make his power limitless. Traveling across Ninjago, Sensei Wu and his four elementally-attuned students, Kai Smith (Fire), Jay Walker (Lightning), Zane Julien (Ice) and Cole Bucket (Earth) recover the Golden Weapons, together with trying to find and rescue Kai's sister, Nya (who was captured by Garmadon's army, The Skullkins. Kai is tricked and runs off alone and finds the Sword of Fire, but is confronted by Garmadon in shadow-form. Kai rescues his little sister Nya and makes peace with the Dragon guardians, but, in order to keep the Sword of Fire from Garmadon, Wu travels to the Underworld to fight his corrupted brother. The four Ninja follow him down on their dragons, who are magical and can exist in both worlds. After defeating the Skeleton Army with the ultimate Spinjitzu move, the Tornado of Creation, they come upon Sensei fighting the general of the Skeleton Army, Samukai, who is in possession of three of the Golden Weapons (stolen from the Ninja earlier while they rested in the forests near the Fire Temple). Wu is defeated and Samukai tries to take the weapons for his own, but their combined power is too much for any normal being to control, destroys him and creates a portal into another realm between space and time, allowing Garmadon to escape, but one day return with enough power to wield the Four Golden Weapons. With Garmadon gone, the balance is temporarily restored, and the Ninja will prepare to train themselves for the day the ruler of the underworld returns.

Season One focuses on the Ninja trying to determine which one of them will be destined to become the Green Ninja, a warrior destined to face the Dark Lord for the fate of Ninjago. It also focuses on Garmadon's young son Lloyd Garmadon, who has released an ancient evil: an army of four Serpentine (snake) tribes (and the last member of a fifth) known in legends as the Serpentine. The four Ninja must stop them from uniting to unleash The Great Devourer, a massive black, green and purple snake with the power to consume all of Ninjago and a bite that can turn people evil, which is what turned Garmadon evil. However, Lloyd was betrayed by two of the five tribes (and Pythor, the last member of the most-feared snake tribe, the Anacondrai) before Sensei Wu convinced him to join their side, taking pity on him because of being left alone. Eventually, the Serpentine captured Lloyd as a hostage, and Lord Garmadon, who returned with the help of Sensei Wu, had agreed to aid the Ninja in rescuing Lloyd and stopping the Serpentine, considering the fact that Garmadon himself wants to be the one to threaten Ninjago and wanting revenge on the beast responsible for his fall into evil. To this end, he even gets the Skeleton Army to help fight against the Serpentine, despite the fact he planned their former leader's death. However, despite the combined efforts of the Ninja, Garmadon, and the Skeletons, the Snake King Pythor, manages to release the Great Devourer in a mad attempt to gain his revenge on the people of Ninjago, although he realized too late that The Great Devourer consumes even its own kind. He and Wu are eaten by the Devourer, leaving only the Ninja, Nya (who became a secret fighter known as Samurai X) and Lloyd (revealed to be the Green Ninja) to fight against the monster. Eventually, Lord Garmadon comes to the rescue and destroys the creature by using the combined might of the Four Golden Weapons given by the Ninja. After the Devourer's destruction, Wu is found to have survived, Pythor is nowhere to be found, and Garmadon vanishes with the weapons. Despite losing the weapons, the Ninja prepare to train Lloyd so that he can face his father one day and save Ninjago, something which he was afraid to for the sake of their bond.

The first half of Season Two charts the Ninja's efforts to train Lloyd and Garmadon's efforts to thwart it. To do this, he recreates the Destiny's Bounty (a flying and sailing ship that used to be the Ninja's home in Season 1 before being destroyed by the Devourer), unites the Serpentine under his control, and merges the four Golden Weapons into the powerful Mega Weapon, but he soon discovers from experience that the weapon cannot destroy, but only create, much to his chagrin. He tries a number of schemes, with one being to create dark doubles of the Ninja. Lord Garmadon tries more attacks, but each time he fails and strengthens Lloyd in the process, with one scheme leading to Lloyd being aged from the child he was to a teenager like his four ninja mentors. Garmadon then tries traveling back in time to make sure the ninja team are never formed, thus ensuring Lloyd would never fulfill his destiny. He almost succeeds, but Kai, Jay, Zane, and Cole from the present, who follow him through, manage to destroy the Mega Weapon with the Golden Weapons from the past and sending them to outer space, changing everything back to the way it was, with the exception that no-one but the four and Garmadon remember that the Mega Weapon existed. The second half of the season focuses on the rise of the Dark Lord. Betrayed by the Serpentine, Garmadon ends up on his island and releases the Overlord: at the same time, the venom of the Great Devourer seeps into catacombs beneath Ninjago, waking the Overlord's Stone Army. The Serpentine are then trapped underground in the chamber where the Stone Army slept, much to their dismay. Along with Misako, Lloyd's mother, the Ninja group travel to the Dark Island (meeting Zane's father, who was originally presumed dead, along the way), where Garmadon has taken command of the Stone Army and started the Celestial Clock, which counts down to the final battle. The Ninja fail to stop the clock, and it triggers the creation of Garmatron, a machine for altering the balance between light and darkness. Once this is done, the Overlord possesses Garmadon and travels to Ninjago. The Ninja follow, and Lloyd uses his newfound Golden Power to defeat the Overlord. In the process, Garmadon's dark transformation is reversed, and he becomes human, reuniting with his family.

Some time after the events of season two, Ninjago City has been rebuilt into a futuristic metropolis and renamed New Ninjago City. The four ninja, striving for action, find out that the Overlord survived the final battle, being trapped in the Digiverse. Cyrus Borg, creator of Borg Industries, realizes this and give the ninja the Techno Blades, which could be used to destroy the Overlord. The Overlord uses P.I.X.A.L. (an android who works at Borg Industries) to create the Nindroid army from Zane's blueprints and plans to get Lloyd because Lloyd's golden power will help him escape the digital realm. Later, the hard drive containing the Overlord is stolen by Pythor, who survived being eaten by the Devourer but his skin got turned white and still wants revenge on the people of Ninjago. He captures Lloyd, and the Overlord drains him of most of his Golden Power while the ninja fight him in the Digiverse. They shut down the system too late, and the Overlord escapes the digital realm half-formed. Lloyd then splits his remaining golden power among the four ninja, knowing that the power would be a big responsibility for him to bear alone. The Overlord, needing to complete his transformation, sends the Nindroids to space to retrieve the Golden Weapons, which they succeed in doing. The Overlord becomes the Golden Master, fulfilling an old Serpentine legend, and wreaks havoc on New Ninjago City. Realizing the situation is hopeless, Zane destroys the Golden Master, and is destroyed himself in the process. However, Zane survives in the Digiverse, and rebuilds himself, becoming the Titanium Ninja.

The ninja are fractured at the loss of Zane. However, when they receive an invitation to the Tournament of Elements, they find out that Zane is alive on the island. Master Chen, who created the Tournament and was Garmadon's sensei after the Devourer bit him, works under the Anacondrai motto, "Only One Can Remain". And this is the case, for when someone is eliminated from the tournament, Chen steals their Elemental Power, and sends them to work in his noodle factory. Eventually, Nya goes looking for the ninja, and finds out that Chen wants to steal everyone's elemental powers to transform him and his followers into Anacondrai. Chen then arranges for all of the remaining Elemental Masters to find and capture her. Chen then manages to capture all of the Elemental Masters except for Lloyd, and steals their power. Lloyd and Chen face off, and Chen easily wins. However, before being able to cast the spell, Kai destroys the Staff of Elements, giving all of the Elemental Masters their powers back. They revolt against Chen, who manages to escape, capturing Skylor, his daughter, in the process. Clouse, Chen's right-hand man and Garmadon's old rival, realizes that Skylor can complete the spell due to her ability to wield all Elemental Powers. Garmadon and Clouse face off, and Garmadon banishes Clouse to the Cursed Realm. Chen manages to complete the spell, and everyone with the Mark of the Anacondrai (including him, Skylor, and Garmadon) turn into Anacondrai. He and his followers go to Ninjago to start a second Serpentine War. The Elemental Masters discover that, like Lloyd, they can manifest Elemental Dragons. The heroes fly to Ninjago and find out that Chen needs the essence of a true Anacondrai, which in this case, would be Pythor's sweat, to make the spell permanent. It is also revealed that Chen started the first Serpentine War by tricking both sides into thinking the other would attack. After the Ninja are unsuccessful in keeping Pythor out of Chen's clutches, he manages to collect enough sweat to transform himself and his army, and then starts attacking the villages around New Ninjago City. The ninja get the citizens of Ninjago to revolt at the Corridor of Elders, but they are unable to defeat the Anacondrai. Pythor is able to escape with the spellbook and tells Garmadon that the only way to stop the war is to release the spirits of the Anacondrai Generals, who were locked in the Cursed Realm, but in order to do this, Garmadon would have to be banished. Lloyd, who initially is in denial over having his recently-turned-good father banished forever, relents and curses his father. Garmadon is sent through the portal, with the Anacondrai in tow. Skylor becomes human again, and Pythor is returned to normal size by the spirits of the Anacondrai Generals, who also thank Lloyd for allowing them to help stop Chen and bring peace to Ninjago. Afterwards, everyone rejoices and a figure of Garmadon is carved into the Corridor of Elders. Lloyd, the ninja, Nya, Wu, and Misako gather around a campfire, speak words about Garmadon, then burn the spellbook. All seems to be well, however, a shadowy figure flies through the air, the figure then speaks the word: "Morro."

Characters[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Season Episodes Originally aired
First aired Last aired
Pilots 2 January 14, 2011 (2011-01-14)
1 13 December 2, 2011 (2011-12-02) April 11, 2012 (2012-04-11)
2 13 July 18, 2012 (2012-07-18) November 21, 2012 (2012-11-21)
3 8 January 29, 2014 (2014-01-29) November 26, 2014 (2014-11-26)
4 10 February 23, 2015 (2015-02-23)[8] April 3, 2015 (2015-04-03)
5 10 June 29, 2015 (2015-06-29) July 10, 2015 (2015-07-10)


Release and reception[edit]

The pilot episodes of Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu premiered in the United States on January 14, 2011. They were released in Europe on January 24, 2011.[9]

All episodes feature a theme song called "The Weekend Whip" performed by The Fold.

Due to the positive reception of the pilot, a full series was commissioned and began broadcast in December 2011. The first five episodes of season 1 aired in Canada on November 25. The season once again aired in Canada from January 11, 2012, to April 11, 2012. The first two episodes of season 1 aired in the United States on December 2. The season once again aired in the United States from January 11, 2012, to April 11, 2012.

Lego Ninjago was recommissioned for a second season, which premiered on July 18, 2012, to an audience of 2.8 million. On the whole, the series has been very well received by fans.[10] In late September, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment announced that it would be releasing the first part of the second season ("Darkness Shall Rise" to "The Stone Army") under the title Rise of the Green Ninja in November 27, 2012 (though this was later pushed forward to December 11),[11] while the complete second season and the complete series has been released on March 5, 2013.[12] A third season was made and premiered on January 29, 2014. In June 2013, Warner Bros. announced that a movie based on the toyline would be made, though it would take a different approach to the TV series. It will be written by the Hageman Brothers, who also wrote the story for The Lego Movie.[13]

The series has been nominated twice for awards: Peter Hausner was nominated at the 39th Annie Awards for his direction, but lost to Simpsons director Matthew Nastuk. The composers Michael Kramer and Jay Vincent, were nominated for the BMI TV Music Award, which they won.[14]

Home media[edit]

The pilot episodes were released on DVD March 27, 2012.[15][better source needed] Season 1 was released June 26, 2012,[16] and Season 2 was released on DVD March 5, 2013.[12] Season 3 was divided into 2 volumes with volume 1 being released on August 5, 2014[17] and volume 2 being released on January 20, 2015.[18] Season 4 is planned to be released on July 21, 2015.[19]

Video games[edit]

A video game named Lego Battles: Ninjago was released in spring 2011 and was based on the two pilots of the series. It features the some of the characters that appear in the original episodes (Kai, Jay, Zane, Cole, etc.).

A follow-up titled Lego Ninjago: Nindroids was released in July 2014. It features the first five episodes of season 3. In March 2015, Lego Ninjago: Shadow of Ronin was released.

Film[edit]

The Hageman brothers, who wrote the animated series and as well The Lego Movie (which Lloyd Garmadon appeared in as a Master Builder) will be penning the film adaptation and the film will feature a new take that diverges from the TV series while being one of the spin-offs of The Lego Movie. The brothers will reteam with The Lego Movie team of Dan Lin, Roy Lee, Phil Lord, and Chris Miller will produced the film and Charlie Bean (animator) to direct the film.[20][21]

References[edit]

  1. ^ The Deadline Team. "Cartoon Network Unveils Upfront Slate For 2014–15". Deadline. Retrieved 2 March 2015. 
  2. ^ "Lego Ninjago Series 1 on Amazon.com". Amazon.com. Retrieved July 26, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Lego Ninjago business section on IMDb". IMDb. Retrieved September 9, 2012. 
  4. ^ "LEGO Club Magazine". lego.com. Retrieved 2 March 2015. 
  5. ^ Ninjago "Possession" (Official Trailer Season 5). YouTube. 8 June 2015. 
  6. ^ "Czerwiec 2015 na Cartoon Network i Boomerang - Satinfo24.pl". Satinfo24.pl. 
  7. ^ http://www.thebrickfan.com/lego-ninjago-san-diego-comic-con-2015-panel-recap/.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ "cartoon network". Retrieved 1 February 2015. 
  9. ^ "Premiering exclusively on Cartoon Network – LEGO Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu". Lego Group. Retrieved February 16, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Lego Ninjago review". Commonsense Media. Retrieved July 27, 2012. 
  11. ^ David Lambert. "Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu – Short Delay for Warner's 'Rise of the Green Ninja' DVD Release". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2012-10-16. 
  12. ^ a b "Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu – Warner Press Release Announces 'Rise of the Green Ninja' DVD". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved September 28, 2012. 
  13. ^ Scott Collura (June 27, 2013). "LEGO's Ninjago Gets a Movie". IGN. Retrieved 2013-06-28. 
  14. ^ "Awards for "Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu"". IMDb. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  15. ^ "Lego Ninjago pilot episodes on Amazon.com". Amazon.com. Retrieved 26 July 2012. 
  16. ^ "Lego Ninjago Series 1 on Amazon.com". Amazon.com. Retrieved 26 July 2012. 
  17. ^ "Amazon.com: LEGO:NINJAGO:MASTERS SPINJITZU:REBTD: Season 3 Battle for New Ninjago City Season 3 Part 1: Vincent Tong, Kirby Morrow, Michael Adamthwaite, Brent Miller, Paul Dobson, Kelly Metzger, Jilian Michaels, Kathleen Barr, Scott McNeil, Jennifer Hayward, Lee Tockar, Alan Marriott, Torsten Jacobsen, ERIK WILSTRUP: Movies & TV". amazon.com. 
  18. ^ "Amazon.com: LEGO Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu: Rebooted: Season 3 Part 2: Vincent Tong, Kirby Morrow, Michael Adamthwaite, Brent Miller, Paul Dobson, Kelly Metzger, Jilian Michaels, Kathleen Barr, Scott McNeil, Jennifer Hayward, Lee Tockar, Alan Marriott, Torsten Jacobsen, ERIK WILSTRUP: Movies & TV". amazon.com. 
  19. ^ "LEGO Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu - Season Four... : Target". Target. 
  20. ^ Tatiana Siegel. "Warner Bros. to Bring Lego's 'Ninjago' to Big Screen (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2 March 2015. 
  21. ^ Borys Kit. "'Tron: Uprising' Director to Helm 'Ninjago' for Warner Bros. (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2 March 2015. 

External links[edit]