After two specials and sixteen story arcs, the two series that make up LEGO Ninjago–The Masters of Spinjitzu and Ninjago–is at an end. After doing many rewatches of this excellent series, I can finally say what are my Five Best LEGO Ninjago seasons to watch. The reason behind the separation is silly, since the naming convention is to distinguish which studio did what; but for a fan like me, it’s the same series and I prefer to acknowledge it as a whole unit.
I found my feelingx mixed when the end suggested the this team is retiring. Technically, the word is something else, but when considering all that’s being talked about within the fandom community on Reddit and other sources, this fact is certain. I’ve also expounded upon the last few seasons too when I realised I really love this series. As for what I feel may be coming next, I’ll explore in part two that will be published the following week. This list goes from least to best.
Rise of the Snakes
Technically, the pilot and the first three seasons can easily be lumped together, since they follow one after another to a fitting finale. The reason behind including this set is because it establishes all the relationships going on between the Ninja and their allies. I’m glad the producers planned for a short series run, and when it became a mega success, they were then able to expand upon the world. This run offers a lot of hints at what would get developed in later seasons and they are easy to spot when rewatched.
Rise of the Snakes certainly sets the tone for everything that could come, and when they did after season four, oh boy, rewatching this arc is even all the better! Thankfully, newcomers don’t have to subscribe to Netflix to see this series. The LEGO Company has made the early seasons available to view free on YouTube (depending on country).
Tournament of Elements
At first, I didn’t think much of this rip off of Bruce Lee’s most well known work, Enter the Dragon, but after successive watches, I find how this world has been expanded upon is very significant. Not only do we learn that there are more elements that various warriors can become masters of, but also we are not limited to aspects of Nature. That is, the abilities aren’t limited to fire, water, earth, and air. Instead, there’s steel, light, and shadow along with much more!
Plus we get to see that the team isn’t alone in their crime fighting! They can make friends too, especially when the people put into this arena of doom eventually learn that there’s another who can steal away their abilities! He wants to take them away for good, whereas another can only possess it for a short time. Skylor is much like Rogue from the Marvel Comics, and she’s a very cool ally to have once when she learns what her father is up to!
Also, this season is a teaser for much more to come, since we have recurring characters. Some are good, and others bad. As for who is worse, well, that’s up to viewers to decide. Sadly, a later season which involves two villains who can manipulate time isn’t as well loved amongst fans, but I was okay with it.
This redo of Rebooted (Season Three) does a better job of imagining what goes on in the digital realm. Although season three was the first to hint at shenanigans in a digital realm, it did not go as deep as this one! That is, instead of dealing with a ghost in the machine, we had an enemy wanting to return to the physical realm. But with this later story, we’re not dealing with a familiar enemy. Instead, it’s an excellent what if a sentient artificial intelligence truly went rogue!
As for whether this world can be considered one of the sixteen that exists in this omniverse, that’s tough to say, but the reason I like this season is in how it recognises that all programs aren’t limited to their programming. It’s everything a TRON 3 sequel should explore, and as for whether that Disney film will ever come, I can be thankful I can enjoy this LEGO take more.
When this chapter brings together various Asian beliefs about the other side, I was instantly in love! Not only does it deal with honouring those who passed, but also recognises death as not final. That is, the souls live on, and as for whether they become friendly or vengeful spirits depends on how they’ve been treated in life.
Unfortunately for Morro, the lead villain, his disgrace made him decide to wreck sorrow upon the living because he was not the person destined to become the Green Ninja. The back story that’s developed is a perfect lead in to the side stories which are published by LEGO/Random House books (Amazon link to the four volumes), where we see a younger Wu truly learning from his mistakes before finally finding Cole, Jay, Zane, Nya and Kai.
Out of all the seasons that are the most emotional, Skybound is the best. Jay is still working on winning Nya’s heart, but when another immortal, Nadakahn, a Djinni, sees she’s the reincarnation of his own beloved, he’ll stop at nothing to gain her heart only to “restore” the spirit that’s long gone. It’s essentially a different take on Brendon Fraiser’s The Mummy 2. Unlike the film which rushed to get the story finished, this tale took its time to develop the bad guy, show where he’s come from, why he’s become such the madman that he is, and then seek “justice” towards all that’s been wronged to him. But there’s more to the tale than just all the Arabic lore which goes beyond One Thousand and One Nights.
This story is one of the better djinni in the bottle stories that’s out there. Quite often, we’re dealing with the familiar where the fire elemental is known to twist the words of a wish around, and there’s no way to get out of it save but one. In what this cartoon does outdo everything I recall from this genre since it came from the heart, and the love story is one for the ages! No spoilers are going to be said here.
Sadly, some knowledge of the series is required before one can simply jump in to this particular tale. Much of it mostly requires knowing seasons one to three and how Jay has been pining for Nya since the start of this series. Despite all the ups and downs, and misdirections, we get to learn why these two are truly meant for each other, and it’s a tender moment which not even the newer Ninjago series can touch upon. Despite what Crystalised (Season 16) tried to show how their love is eternal, it can’t hold a candle to how this series tied the knot.