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“There's always hope. Akita's still out there, and my friends are out there. And if I know one thing, is that ninja never quit. They never give up. Ever.”
Lloyd to Kataru

A Fragile Hope is the twenty-eighth episode of the eleventh season of Ninjago and the 126th episode overall. It aired on October 21, 2019, in Australia and on November 8, 2019, in Canada, paired with "Corruption." It aired in the US on January 25, 2020, paired up with "Once and for All."


Having discovered the terrible truth of Zane's fate, Lloyd finds himself imprisoned and alone in the clutches of the Ice Emperor.[1]

Extended: Lloyd attempts to remind Zane of who he is and where he came from. Vex, however, sees his influence waning and urges Zane to destroy Lloyd. The moment is witnessed by Grimfax, who seems unsure what to believe. In a moment of desperation, Lloyd throws himself at Zane and tries to knock the Scroll out of his hands. But in his weakened state, Lloyd is easily overpowered and dragged off to the dungeons. Elsewhere, Nya, Jay, Kai, Cole and the creature, Krag, find themselves pursued by Frost Wolves. Just as the Frost Wolves are about to catch them, they arrive at the wreckage of the Land Bounty. They ninja luckily scare the Frost Wolves away and start to work on the Bounty. In the Ice Castle, Lloyd finds himself in a dank dungeon cell. He hears a voice and realizes he has a neighbor in the next cell. It's Kataru: Akita's brother! The two prisoners bond over their shared connection and plan their escape. Elsewhere, the ninja get the Land Bounty working just as the Frost Wolves return! Their narrow escape is witnessed by Vex, who convinces the Ice Emperor to conjure forth Boreal one last time to destroy them. Just as all hope seems lost, however, Lloyd receives an unexpected visitor. Grimfax arrives and releases Lloyd and Kataru, offering to join them and help them defeat the Ice-Emperor.[2]


Lloyd looks up to Zane in disbelief, seeing that he is the Ice Emperor. Zane is confused about who Lloyd is and why he calls him Zane. Lloyd tries to get Zane to remember who he is by telling him of Ninjago, their friends, and moments from their shared past, like how Lloyd made his ninja gi pink. However, Zane doesn’t recall any of those moments and Vex calls the stories lies.

Lloyd sees Zane's scepter, which reminds him of the Scroll of Forbidden Spinjitzu and Zane's banishment by Aspheera. Lloyd eventually reaches the conclusion that it has corrupted him and asks Zane how long he has been the Ice Emperor. Zane answers that he has held the scroll for decades. Initially shocked, Lloyd assumes that time works differently in Never-Realm than it does in Ninjago. He tries to get Zane to drop his staff but Vex says that Lloyd has come for the Scroll and takes it for himself. He fights against the Blizzard Warriors, jumping over Vex to get to Zane only for him to knock him back with his Elemental Powers. Vex announces his desire to kill Lloyd but intrigued by Lloyd's words, Zane orders that he'd be thrown into the dungeon instead. Vex reluctantly complies and Grimfax reflects on Lloyd's words.

The Frost Wolves about to attack the ninja.

Meanwhile, Cole, Jay, Kai, Nya, and Krag search for the Land Bounty and find themselves surrounded by Frost Wolves. Jay comes up with a plan which, much to everyone's chagrin, is to flee. The ninja runoff until Cole sees the Land Bounty and he and the others hide inside. Nya throws a fire extinguisher for Jay to zap and the wolves flee.

Lloyd finds himself in a cell in shackles made of corrupted Ice. He then hears a voice from a nearby cell and introduces himself to the prisoner, which turns out to be Kataru. Lloyd recognizes his name as that of Akita’s brother and he believes his sister is dead. Lloyd tells him that Akita really survived while stating she believed he was dead. Kataru explains that he wasn't killed by Boreal, but was taken prisoner as a prize for so long, he doesn't know how long he has been in the dungeons and has given up hope of escaping. Lloyd believes there is a way and tries to break free from his shackles. Vex appears and tauntingly claps for Lloyd's hopeful speech while telling him that his shackles block out powers. Lloyd retorts a warning to Vex that Zane will see through his lies. Vex believes otherwise, promising to deal with him and anyone else who'll oppose him, and leaves. Kataru believes that things are hopeless, but Lloyd tells him that Akita and his friends are coming and they will never give up.

Unfortunately, Cole contemplates giving up, seeing how Nya cannot get the Land Bounty to work. She removes parts of the Land Bounty, much to Jay and her brother's concern. Krag smells the wolves returning and he, Jay, and Cole fight them though badly outnumbered. Nya angrily slams at the console with her wrench and the Land Bounty reactivates, allowing the team to escape.

Grimfax joins The Resistance.

As Vex leaves the dungeon, he hears a noise but doesn’t see anything and leaves. It turns out Grimfax was hiding and heads to the dungeon. Grimfax reveals that unlike the rest of the Blizzard Warriors, he still has his free will and releases Lloyd and Kataru. He asks him if Zane truly was a good person, which Lloyd confirms and tells Grimfax that if he can get his scepter away from Zane, he will return to normal. The three join forces and Lloyd starts up a resistance against the Ice Emperor and Vex.













For the transcript of the episode, click here.


  • Narrator: Nya
  • This episode's title is based on the book titled A Fragile Hope by Cynthia Ruchti.
  • Zane stating that he has been holding the staff for many decades causes Lloyd to believe that time passes faster in the Never-Realm, but in actuality, Aspheera sent him around sixty years into the past.[3]


  • This marks the second time Nya reads the title of an episode.
  • Lloyd refers to the time he once put Kai's clothes in with Zane's and making his Training suit pink, referring to "Can of Worms."
  • Even though Zane knows himself as only the Ice Emperor, he still allows Lloyd to call him Zane and listens to his supposed "moments" he once had with him, displaying that he still has reason within his corrupted self. And despite Vex trying to destroy Lloyd, Zane chose to spare Lloyd in his dungeon.
    • However, in "Once and for All," when Zane thought Akita was trying to steal his scepter, he called her "another rebel thief," implying that Zane thought Lloyd was lying to him at the time. In "Awakenings," when Lloyd calls Zane by his actual name again, the latter attacks Lloyd and says that wasn't his name.
  • This is the third time Lloyd tries to reform an antagonist, the first two times being with Garmadon in "True Potential and "Green Destiny", and with Harumi in "Big Trouble, Little Ninjago".
  • The prisoner is revealed to be Kataru, who was taken as a prize by Boreal after the freezing of his village and didn’t know Akita was alive.
    • When he mentions he gave up marking for how long he had been in the dungeon, it is possible that he ran out of space for the tally marks, for all the walls, and even the floor, are covered in tally marks.
  • Despite the sails still destroyed, the ninja managed to repair the Land Bounty.
  • Nya slamming the console to get the Land Bounty started was similar to when Kai slammed the controls of the Destiny's Bounty to get it to start in "Secrets Discovered," and again by Lloyd in "The Jade Princess."
  • This episode marks the second time that Lloyd creates a resistance to stop an emperor, the first time being in the ninth season.


  • During Lloyd's duel with the Blizzard Samurai, when he grabs the last warrior by the spear, the warrior's helmet and armor are both gray instead of maroon, making him look like Grimfax, but this is quickly fixed when Lloyd throws the warrior away.
  • According to Zane, he had his scepter frozen to his hand once he took over the Never-Realm. However, in Akita's flashback in "The Last of the Formlings," he is shown without it.



For the gallery of the episode, click here.


Ninjago episodes
Pilot episodes 1. Way of the Ninja · 2. The Golden Weapon · 3. King of Shadows · 4. Weapons of Destiny
Mini-movies 1. Secrets of the Blacksmith · 2. Flight of the Dragon Ninja · 3. The New Masters of Spinjitzu · 4. An Underworldly Takeover · 5. Return to the Fire Temple · 6. Battle Between Brothers
Season 1: Rise of the Snakes 1. Rise of the Snakes · 2. Home · 3. Snakebit · 4. Never Trust a Snake · 5. Can of Worms · 6. The Snake King · 7. Tick Tock · 8. Once Bitten, Twice Shy · 9. The Royal Blacksmiths · 10. The Green Ninja · 11. All of Nothing · 12. The Rise of the Great Devourer · 13. Day of the Great Devourer
Season 2: Legacy of the Green Ninja 14. Darkness Shall Rise · 15. Pirates vs. Ninja · 16. Double Trouble · 17. Ninjaball Run · 18. Child's Play · 19. Wrong Place, Wrong Time · 20. The Stone Army · 21. The Day Ninjago Stood Still · 22. The Last Voyage · 23. Island of Darkness · 24. The Last Hope · 25. Return of the Overlord · 26. Rise of the Spinjitzu Master
Season 3: Rebooted 27. The Surge · 28. The Art of the Silent Fist · 29. Blackout · 30. The Curse of the Golden Master · 31. Enter the Digiverse · 32. Codename: Arcturus · 33. The Void · 34. The Titanium Ninja
Season 4: Tournament of Elements 35. The Invitation · 36. Only One Can Remain · 37. Versus · 38. Ninja Roll · 39. Spy for a Spy · 40. Spellbound · 41. The Forgotten Element · 42. The Day of the Dragon · 43. The Greatest Fear of All · 44. The Corridor of Elders
Season 5: Possession 45. Winds of Change · 46. Ghost Story · 47. Stiix and Stones· 48. The Temple on Haunted Hill · 49. Peak-a-Boo · 50. Kingdom Come · 51. The Crooked Path · 52. Grave Danger · 53. Curseworld, Part I · 54. Curseworld, Part II
Chen mini-movies (non-canon) 1. Chen's New Chair · 2. Chair Play Chen · 3. Chair Up Chen · 4. Chairful What You Wish For · 5. Bad Chair Day
Season 6: Skybound 55. Infamous · 56. Public Enemy Number One · 57. Enkrypted · 58. Misfortune Rising · 59. On a Wish and a Prayer · 60. My Dinner With Nadakhan · 61. Wishmasters · 62. The Last Resort · 63. Operation Land Ho! · 64. The Way Back
Tall Tales (non-canon) 1. The Tall Tale of Flintlocke · 2. The Tall Tale of Clancee · 3. The Tall Tale of Doubloon · 4. The Tall Tale of Dogshank · 5. The Tall Tale of Monkey Wretch · 6. The Tall Tale of Sqiffy and Bucko
Special Day of the Departed
Operation Heavy Metal 1. Operation Heavy Metal: Machia · 2. Operation Heavy Metal: Buffmillion · 3. Operation Heavy Metal: Blunck · 4. Operation Heavy Metal: Raggmunk
Season 7: The Hands of Time 65. The Hands of Time · 66. The Hatching · 67. A Time of Traitors · 68. Scavengers · 69. A Line in the Sand · 70. The Attack · 71. Secrets Discovered · 72. Pause and Effect · 73. Out of the Fire and Into the Boiling Sea · 74. Lost in Time
Wu's Teas mini-movies (non-canon) Wu's Teas
Ninjago: Decoded 1. Legacy · 2. Vehicles and Mechs · 3. Legendary Places · 4. Ninjago's Most Wanted · 5. The Digiverse and Beyond · 6. The Elemental Masters · 7. Beasts and Dragons · 8. Rise of Garmadon · 9. Prophecy of the Green Ninja · 10. Greatest Battles
Season 8: Sons of Garmadon 75. The Mask of Deception · 76. The Jade Princess · 77. The Oni and the Dragon · 78. Snake Jaguar · 79. Dead Man's Squall · 80. The Quiet One · 81. Game of Masks · 82. Dread on Arrival · 83. True Potential · 84. Big Trouble, Little Ninjago
Season 9: Hunted 85. Firstbourne · 86. Iron & Stone · 87. Radio Free Ninjago · 88. How to Build a Dragon · 89. The Gilded Path · 90. Two Lies, One Truth · 91. The Weakest Link · 92. Saving Faith · 93. Lessons for a Master · 94. Green Destiny
Tales from the Monastery of Spinjitzu 1. Master Class · 2. Green and Gold · 3. The Weekend Drill · 4. Elemental Rider · 5. Blue Lightning · 6. Samurai X-Treme
Season 10: March of the Oni 95. The Darkness Comes · 96. Into the Breach · 97. The Fall · 98. Endings
Season 11: Secrets of the Forbidden Spinjitzu 99. Wasted True Potential · 100. Questing for Quests · 101. A Rocky Start · 102. The Belly of the Beast · 103. Boobytraps and How to Survive Them · 104. The News Never Sleeps! · 105. Ninja vs Lava · 106. Snaketastrophy · 107. Powerless · 108. Ancient History · 109. Never Trust a Human · 110. Under Siege · 111. The Explorers Club · 112. Vengeance is Mine! · 113. A Cold Goodbye · 114. The Never-Realm · 115. Fire Maker · 116. An Unlikely Ally · 117. The Absolute Worst · 118. The Message · 119. The Traveler's Tree · 120. Krag's Lament · 121. Secret of the Wolf · 122. The Last of the Formlings · 123. My Enemy, My Friend · 124. The Kaiju Protocol · 125. Corruption · 126. A Fragile Hope · 127. Once and for All · 128. Awakenings
Prime Empire Original Shorts 1. Let's Dance · 2. Upgrade · 3. The Meaning of Victory · 4. The Stowaway · 5. Manhunt · 6. Gayle Gossip: A Closer Look
Season 12: Prime Empire 129. Would You Like to Enter Prime Empire? · 130. Dyer Island · 131. Level Thirteen · 132. Superstar Rockin' Jay · 133. I am Okino · 134. The Glitch · 135. The Cliffs of Hysteria · 136. The Maze of the Red Dragon · 137. One Step Forward, Two Steps Back · 138. Racer Seven · 139. The Speedway Five-Billion · 140. Stop, Drop and Side Scroll · 141. Ninjago Confidential · 142. The Prodigal Father · 143. The Temple of Madness · 144. Game Over
Season 13: Master of the Mountain 145. Shintaro · 146. Into the Dark · 147. The Worst Rescue Ever · 148. The Two Blades · 149. Queen of the Munce · 150. Trial By Mino · 151. The Skull Sorcerer · 152. The Real Fall · 153. Dungeon Party! · 154. Dungeon Crawl! · 155. Grief-Bringer · 156. Masters Never Quit · 157. The Darkest Hour · 158. The Ascent · 159. The Upply Strike Back! · 160. The Son of Lilly
The Island 161. Uncharted · 162. The Keepers of the Amulet · 163. The Gift of Jay · 164. The Tooth of Wojira
Season 14: Seabound 165. A Big Splash · 166. The Call of the Deep · 167. Unsinkable · 168. Five Thousand Fathoms Down · 169. The Wrath of Kalmaar · 170. Long Live the King · 171. Escape from Merlopia · 172. The Tale of Benthomaar · 173. The Storm Amulet · 174. Riddle of the Sphinx · 175. Papergirl · 176. Master of the Sea · 177. The Calm Before the Storm · 178. Assault on Ninjago City · 179. Nyad · 180. The Turn of the Tide
Ninjago: Reimagined 1. Golden Legend · 2. Gold Rush · 3. A Day in the Life of a Golden Ninja · 4. Sweatin' to the Goldies · 5. Golden Hour
The Virtues of Spinjitzu 1. Curiosity · 2. Balance · 3. Wisdom · 4. Honesty · 5. Generosity · 6. Courage
Season 15: Crystalized 181. Farewell the Sea · 182. The Call of Home · 183. The Shape of Nya · 184. A Mayor Problem · 185. Public Enemies 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5! · 186. A Painful Promise · 187. Ninjago City vs. Ninja · 188. Kryptarium Prison Blues · 189. Hounddog McBrag · 190. The Benefit of Grief · 191. The Fifth Villain · 192. The Council of the Crystal King · 193. TBA · 194. TBA · 195. TBA · 196. TBA · 197. TBA · 198. TBA · 199. TBA · 200. TBA · 201. TBA · 202. TBA · 203. TBA · 204. TBA · 205. TBA · 206. TBA · 207. TBA · 208. TBA · 209. TBA · 210. TBA
Unknown Ninjago 2023 installment TBA