|“Fear? Fear isn't a word where I come from!”|
|— Fritz Donnegan, the character Cliff Gordon portrayed in the actor world|
Cliff Gordon was an actor who played Fritz Donnegan, a fictional outer space hero in films and comic books in the Starfarer franchise. He was the husband of the previous Elemental Master of Lightning and the biological father of Jay.
At some point, Cliff Gordon began his carrer as an actor. Prior to the battle against the Time Twins, Cliff married the Elemental Master of Lightning and the two planned to go on a honeymoon. At some point before or after this, he got the role of Fritz Donnegan of the Starfarer franchise.
Decades later, Cliff and the Master of Lightning would have a son named Jay, but because of Cliff's womanizing nature getting in the way of having a family, his wife left their son in the care of Ed and Edna Walker along with a key to his mansion in Ninjago City. Cliff kept up with his son's later life as a ninja, somehow acquiring his old ZX suit or a replica of it and collecting many pictures of Jay, but he chose not to introduce himself to his son.
At some point, Cliff died of unknown causes, most likely from failing health. After his son used his final wish with Nadakhan to erase the events of the alternate timeline, Cliff was temporarily "resurrected". However, his death played out the same way, as it had nothing to do with the events involving Jay.
Jay grew up believing Ed and Edna were his birth parents, while he idolized Cliff as a celebrity, having been introduced to the Starfarer franchise by Lloyd and growing to admire Fritz Donnegan as his favorite movie character.
"Fritz Donnegan" also inspired Lloyd, who used a version of the famous "Fear?" quote before he gave up his childhood to defeat the Grundal.
Jay was excited when the ninja went to outer space because it reminded him of his hero's Starfarer adventures, and Jay pretended to be Fritz Donnegan when fighting the Nindroids with a blaster outside the rocket.
Eventually, Jay learned of his origins after making a wish with Nadakhan, and Ed and Edna gave Jay the key and address to Cliff's estate. Jay was astonished with his father's villa, in which he and the other ninja briefly resided in an alternate timeline.
Because these events were undone, Jay is still waiting to receive his inheritance.
Cliff's legacy continued after his death, his film remaining a staple of Chan's Theater.
- 32. "Codename: Arcturus" (recording)
- 76. "The Jade Princess" (recording)
- 101. "A Rocky Start" (pictured)
- Cliff's death was not caused by Jay's wish in "Misfortune Rising", as one of Nadakhan's rules is that one cannot wish harm onto another. Nadakhan did not change the past, rather, he simply caused Jay to learn the information.
- Cliff is the author of the book, Cliff Gordon's Handbook to Wooing Women.
- Cliff is the second parent to have left their child while they were an infant, the first being Misako.
- However, unlike her, Cliff's reason for leaving Jay was self-centered, being that he "was a bit of a womanizer."
- The character of Fritz Donnegan, as well as Cliff's name, may have been inspired by the comic book character Flash Gordon.
- The comic strip was produced at a time when "cliffhanger" endings were becoming popular in media.
- Flash Gordon is also a space-faring hero who started in comics and eventually featured in movies.
- Apart from the wizard costume, the costumes in Cliff's room use the torso designs and/or accessories of characters from LEGO's Collectible Minifigures line: Viking, Spaceman (recolored), Cowboy, and Galaxy Patrol (recolored).
- According to Tommy Andreasen, Cliff's letter of inheritance to Jay "is most likely stuck in transit somewhere".
- "Lost in Time"
- "Misfortune Rising"
- "Codename: Arcturus"
- "The Corridor of Elders"
- "Only One Can Remain"
- "Child's Play"
- "The Void"
- "On a Wish and a Prayer"
- "The Jade Princess"
- "Game Over"