Clouse is Master Chen's former second-in-command and a master of Dark Magic. Like his master, Clouse has a history with Garmadon, having trained with him in their youth under Chen. During that time, he lost an opportunity to become Chen's right-hand man in a fight with Garmadon in the training yard, thus sparking his burning hatred against him.
Years later, when Chen organized the Tournament of Elements, the ninja uncovered a greater scheme to transform Chen and his followers into Anacondrai. Clouse was one of the masterminds of the plan, although before he could complete the task, he was caught in a battle with Garmadon that led to him inadvertently being banished to the Cursed Realm.
Sometime after Clouse's imprisonment, Morro and his army of Ghosts freed the Preeminent, the embodiment of the Cursed Realm, into the city of Stiix. When the beast was drowned, the Cursed Realm and nearly all its prisoners were destroyed, except Clouse. He would later free Nadakhan from the Teapot of Tyrahn shortly after his escape, and would, in turn. be trapped in the teapot himself. After Jay made his final wish, Clouse was freed, but never summoned Nadakhan. Clouse reunited the Sky Pirates on his own, allying with them to corrupt the Temple of Light and plunge all of Ninjago into darkness. The ninja would eventually stop Clouse, and as a result, he was banished to the Underworld and the Sky Pirates arrested and sent to Kryptarium Prison.
Currently, he is the last remaining member of the Anacondrai cultists and the only known survivor of the Cursed Realm's destruction.
At a young age, Clouse was a student of Master Chen and trained under him at his monastery. There, he developed a rivalry between one of the other students; Garmadon. One day a fight broke out between them in the training yard, which only intensified when Chen declared that the winner would be made his second in command and be granted lordship. To try and gain the upper hand, Clouse used his magic to bring the equipment to life but was defeated when Garmadon used Spinjitzu, a form that Chen had forbidden. Clouse quickly pointed out that Garmadon had cheated, but Chen dismissed it and pronounced Garmadon as a "lord."
Clouse eventually did become Chen's second in command as during the Serpentine Wars, Garmadon left Chen to fight alongside his brother. At Chen's request, Clouse used his Magic during a battle between the Elemental Alliance and the Anacondrai in Birchwood Forest to divide the Elemental Masters, ensuring the Serpentine's victory. Nevertheless, the alliance won the war, causing Chen and Clouse to be exiled to a secluded island.
At Chen's request, Clouse used dark magic to manipulate Krux and Acronix, the Elemental Masters of Time, into betraying the Elemental Alliance, thus contuniung conflict where Chen and Clouse couldn't.
Following the Nindroid crisis, Chen and Clouse planned to have the newly-rebuilt Zane captured and imprisoned on their island to lure the ninja into the tournament. Clouse approached a mercenary named Ronin, hoping to use him for the job. Ronin wished to opt out of the assignment when he realized one of the ninja was involved, but Clouse threatened to harm Ronin's family should he not comply.
Chen's New Chair (non-canon)
Clouse prompts Chen to look at the instructions for his new chair, but Chen ignores him and proceeds press random buttons, which opens up a trap door, which the chair's box falls through. He then presses another button, setting Clouse on fire and burning the instructions.
Clouse stands by as Chen plays around with the buttons on his chair.
Chen and Clouse play table tennis, with Clouse clearly being the better of the two, though Chen refuses to admit it. After many matches and many losses, Chen loses his temper and brings out two giant ping pong ball machine guns and fires them furiously at Clouse. Immediately after the barrage ends, Chen hits a ball over the net to Clouse's side, and pronounces himself the winner, before getting smashed in the table.
Clouse was present when the ninja were asked to board the ship quickly. Kai, Cole, and Jay quickly boarded, but Lloyd was stopped by his father. Although displeased to see him, Clouse gave his old rival a greeting and remarked on his status as a Sensei. Even though Lloyd was asked not to get on the ship, Clouse called one last time, and Lloyd joined, with his father deciding to come, but Clouse tried to stop stating there was no room. Garmadon got around this rule by knocking a grunt off the boat which caused Clouse to let him on board.
Clouse shows the contestants the palace and sarcastically states to Garmadon that Chen will be pleased to see him again. Clouse soon orders the attendants to welcome Master Chen. He then pauses and lets Chen explain their Tournament idea. After the servants escort the contestants to their quarters, Clouse has Garmadon kicked out the palace since he wasn't participating, but Garmadon says he's just there to make sure nothing shifty happens outside.
After Karlof has lost all of his powers, the ninja are discovered amongst the cultists and Clouse has pet serpent pursue them after they move to escape. In the end, the imposters evaded the serpent but the serpent ripped a piece of Jay's tournament gi. He thanks his pet, and now knows the people who had spied on them.
During Kai's battle against Ash, Clouse attempted to use his Dark Magic in the match, but Chen stopped him stating he was enjoying the fight. Clouse watched the first round of battles and showed no emotion when some of the contestants lost.
Later on, Clouse spoke to his master about the ninja's infiltration of the ceremony but Chen stated he had a plan. Chen and Clouse pitted Cole and Jay against one another, Clouse laughed off any involvement when the ninja protested this.
The ninja enlisted Neuro to try to find out what the Tournament was really about by reading Chen's mind. Neuro couldn't get close enough to Chen, but he managed to pick up some things from Clouse when the latter caught Neuro in the dressing room.
Soon after Zane escaped his prison cell, Clouse shocked him with a taser and told Zugu to put on thicker chains so the Nindroid couldn't cut through.
Clouse first appeared to inform Chen that he had heard rumors of an alliance of Elemental fighters, spurring Chen to take action. He then reappeared to check on his spellbook and noticed some kabuki paint (Nya's) on the spellbook cover. Intrigued, he opened it to discover that the transformation spell page had been stolen. With this clear evidence of a spy, Chen ordered all the kabuki servants to be searched.
Later on, once Chen had discovered Nya as a spy, Clouse confronted a fleeing Nya and a fight broke out between them on the rooftops of Chen's fortress. It seemed like Clouse had the upper hand, but right before he dealt the final blow, Nya kicked him backward and fled to the jungle, leaving a very angry Clouse behind.
For the next part of the tournament, whereas Chen had the fighters search the island for Nya, Clouse stood by his masters' side in the D.B. Express as he oversaw the event using the mobile base's computer screen. He questioned his master's intent, pointing out that their men hadn't been able to find the girl so it was unlikely that the fighter would be able to find her either. Chen, however, revealed that the true purpose of the round was not to capture Nya but rather the fighters themselves. He explains that the gifts he had given them were implanted with tracking devices, detailing their every move and location. Chen ended his monologue by stating by the day's end, there would be no more fighters as Clouse was amazed and amused by his master's intentions and the two villains shared a laugh over their dark plan.
Acting on his master's plans, Clouse and a few henchmen were sent out to capture the fighters, first locating Shade telling him his time in the Tournament was up. The Elemental Master was shocked to see the ninja were right about Chen all along as Clouse remarked "Only one can remain. And it will be Chen" before having his men subdue Shade.
Later on, he and Eyezor manage to capture Mr. Pale, telling his master that he was difficult to find but they got him. He later informed his master that Skylor was with Kai, but they had yet to locate Garmadon and Lloyd. Angered by this, Chen sent his second-in-command out to find them and round up the rest of the Elemental Masters.
While he was unable to locate them, he did however find Jay who was using an ElectroMech to get around due to his injured leg. To fight him, Clouse used his Magic to create a rock mech for himself and the two proceeded to fight. Jay quickly became distracted when Nya arrived with the spell in hand and Clouse destroyed the mech's main power source and causing the mech to overload causing both to get caught in the explosion.
Despite this, the two survived and Jay was captured and imprisoned with the other fighters.
Clouse was present at the ceremony where the captured Elemental Masters had their powers taken away. Clouse alerted Chen about Garmadon's infiltration. Later, that same night, he interrupted Garmadon's infiltration into Chen's temple. Seizing an Anacondrai Blade, he advanced on Garmadon, who had grabbed Captain Soto's cutlass in defense. He managed to slice the cutlass in half with his superior blade, and presumably captured Garmadon and brought him to his pet serpent's cave off-screen. He reappeared by Chen's side in the underground portion of the temple to recite the spell.
However, when Kai intervened and grabbed the Staff of Elements, Clouse had to act quickly and attempted to douse Lloyd with some venom (presumably acid/poison) that was dripping from the ceiling. His attempts to destroy Lloyd were foiled when Kai created an energy bubble around Lloyd to protect him. In anger, he attempted to cast a spell at Kai but was frozen into a block of ice by the Staff. He was later shown escaping from the block of ice through a secret passageway alongside his master, Chope, Kapau and Zugu, with Eyezor dragging a tied up Skylor, who was taken captive by them off-screen. As Chen lamented that the fighters have the upper-hand since they regain their powers Clouse assured him they only have victory for now.
Clouse and Chen returned to the cave of the Anacondrai serpent, he was distressed by the demise of his loyal pet caressing it and assuring his love for it. He then swore revenge on Garmadon for the ninja's actions as Chen was unsympathetic to his grief as he wished to leave the island. Clouse stated that unlike Chen's daughter his pet never betrayed them as Chen announced what Skylor's purpose was in the tournament which gave Clouse an idea. He told his master that there was another way to get what he wanted which was to use Skylor's power in place of the destroyed staff to complete the spell. However, Skylor escaped, which caused Chen and Clouse to pursue her but they were distracted as they were assaulted by Cole and Garmadon in the Roto-Jet. Chen had Clouse deal with them and after landing on the wings of Cole's Roto-Jet, Clouse began to sabotage it until Garmadon confronted him. He tackled Clouse, and the two tumbled from the jet into the jungle far below.
Once on the ground, Clouse warned Garmadon that Lloyd would have to stand without him one day, and the two began fighting. Eventually, Clouse opened a portal to the Cursed Realm in a final attempt to defeat Garmadon. As Garmadon was slowly sucked into the portal, Clouse taunted him in his moment was a victory. Taking advantage of his overconfidence, Garmadon latched onto Clouse with a plant and pulled him back towards the portal. Garmadon then shoved him into the portal, condemning Clouse to the Cursed Realm.
For a time, Clouse was the only Anacondrai cultist to be imprisoned in the Cursed Realm, until Garmadon sacrificed himself to free the original Anacondrai Generals and have Chen and his followers, now transformed into Anacondrai, banished to the Cursed Realm. Clouse would remain there for some time, with Master Chen being imprisoned in the cell in front of his.
When Lloyd is banished to the Cursed Realm, he runs past several aisles of cells after seeing a group of ghosts on the move. One of the cells he runs by is Chen's, who is startled by the Green Ninja running by. He alerts Clouse, who is hopelessly attempting to cut his way out of his cell, but he assures Chen that he was seeing things again.
When Nya drowned The Preeminent, the physical manifestation of the Cursed Realm, the realm was destroyed and all its inhabitants were killed. Garmadon, Chen, and his cultists were all killed, but Clouse somehow managed to escape beforehand.
Frustrated once again, Clouse eventually set his eyes on conquering Ninjago by plunging it into Darkness. Setting his eyes on a recently-hatched YinYang Dragon named Bandit, Clouse, realizing he could use a spell to turn the naive baby into a corrupt Shadow Dragon, sent in an army of Shadows to kidnap Bandit, succeeding in doing so. Chaining Bandit in his lair and seizing one of his scales, Clouse used the scales to begin a spell that would corrupt him into a Shadow Dragon. Interrupted by Kai and Nya, Clouse unleashed his Shadows on the two once again, and with the spell beginning to finish, had his Shadows converge into Bandit to finish the metamorphosis. Gloating that Kai's callous neglect would ensure Bandit's inner darkness, Clouse's plans would be rendered futile when Kai, Nya, and a group of acquaintances sent by Master Wu instead encouraged Bandit, supporting the young Dragon. Emboldened by the support, Bandit vanquished the darkness with him, instead turning into a Light Dragon. Incredulous and raving mad, Clouse swore vengeance and escaped from his collapsing lair.
Alone and harboring dark ambitions, Clouse went on to find the legendary Teapot of Tyrahn in Stiix, having lost his magic due to his status as a ghost and believing the wishes of a djinn could bring his powers back.
He dug up the teapot from a pile of junk in the harbor of Stiix and entered an unknown location, where he used the teapot to summon Nadakhan, which freed him and was granted three wishes. He wished for his book of spells, but it backfired when he picked up the book, as it turned into ash due to being burned by the ninja. He then wished for him to become human again, but suffered intense pain, as Nadakhan described the transformation from ghost to physical as a "painful process," leading to Clouse to use his final wish and end up being manipulated by Nadakhan into wishing to be free of all of the pain. Nadakhan then used the broad context of the wish to trick Clouse into being absorbed into the teapot, where he was free of the pain at the expense of being trapped within the teapot.
When Jay was about leave the Djinn Blade with his friends, Clouse grabbed his leg, but Jay kicked him and sent Clouse floating backwards, Jay then escaped along with his friends, leaving Clouse trapped for all eternity.
After Jay made his final wish, Clouse was freed from the Djinn Blade and restored back to his ghost form, with no memory of the events. He attempted to salvage the Teapot of Tyrahn, only to be noticed by the people of Stiix who resented ghosts for the destruction and chased him off, preventing him from freeing Nadakhan and ironically sparing him.
With Bandit now purified, Clouse sought another means of spreading darkness and thus journeyed to the Dark Island. There, he used his dark magic to release Nadakhan's crew from their imprisonment in separate realms. Though they were at first reluctant to work for him, Clouse blackmailed them into plundering fishing boats and using their owners as slave labor to mine for Dark Matter. Using the Matter, he intended to destroy the Temple of Light's defenses which would plunge both islands of Ninjago into darkness.
Not long after the ninja arrived on the Dark Island, Clouse confronted Master Wu in a cave and explained to him his intentions. When Wu freed himself of his entrapment, Clouse fled in the Misfortune's Keep, heading to the Temple of Light.
Regrouping with the Sky Pirates at the Billy Badlands, who were transporting the final trove of Dark Matter needed to corrupt the Temple of Light, Clouse was confronted by Kai, Cole, and eventually the rest of the ninja, including the escaped Misako and Ronin, all piloting his commandeered vehicles. Ordering his minions to defend the trove, Clouse assisted in the fight by blasting Kai aside with a burst of dark magic and later summoning a sandstorm, separating the ninja from him and the pirates as they escaped.
Despite the ninja's attempts to catch up to him, Clouse succeeded in transporting the Dark Matter to the Temple of Light. With the sacred structure's defenses failing, Clouse relished in his victory but nevertheless summoned an army of Shadows to defend his plans alongside the Sky Pirates. Even as the growing darkness caused the Dark Island and Ninjago to slowly merge in order to infect both worlds with pure evil, Clouse formed a shadow barrier to protect the Dark Matter trove, only for Master Wu, now armed with the repaired Golden Mech, to break through.
Frustrated but not defeated, Clouse proceeded to summon his army of Shadows to him, forming a doppelganger Shadow Mech and mocking the Light, ironically claiming that he would remake the world in his own image; the infamous goal and words of his rival, Garmadon. Despite his efforts, however, the blade of his Shadow Mech would be shattered, even as Wu used the Golden Mech to once again disperse the Dark Matter and cleanse the Temple of Light. With the islands now returning to their original positions, a portal formed above Clouse, sucking him in. Despite Wu's offer to save and redeem him, Clouse, blinded by his fury, refused, stating that he'd prefer to die than be saved by Wu, and surrendered to the vortex, being sucked inside. In a final twist of irony, Clouse would find himself transported to the Underworld, surrounded by the Skulkin just as his nemesis Garmadon was, even being in the exact same place where the Dark Lord fought Samukai. Realizing his whereabouts, Clouse screamed, lamenting his fate.
Way of the Departed (non-canon)
Clouse is the Master of Darts Arts, a powerful sorcerer to be feared. In his youth, he and Garmadon were Master Chen’s pupils and rivals to become his right-hand man. In their final training session, Garmadon cheated and Master Chen declared him Lord Garmadon. Clouse carried this injustice round his whole life, so when he finally did become Chen’s right-hand man, he massively over-compensated. He always went to great lengths to please his master. Below Chen’s Palace, Clouse held a giant snake as a pet, feeding it with Chen’s prisoners. The title of lordship has always been his aspiration. During his showdown with Garmadon on Chen’s Island, Clouse was sucked into the Cursed Realm, only to be reunited with his master shortly afterwards.
- Main article: Clouse's relationships
Unlike his master, Clouse was practical and far more down-to-earth, always being serious and rarely, if ever, having a humorous moment. Constantly reserved, Clouse would keep his anger in check, relying on silent threats to those he opposed instead of loud declarations, often preferring to leave his victims' fate to their imagination. Likewise, he was rather sadistic, reveling often in the fear of others, and was prone to a sense of cruel humor. When angered, Clouse would be quick to punish and often severely, not taking any offenses very kindly and enjoying his threats enormously. He also took joy in taunting his enemies after cornering them.
Clouse would at least remain more focused and intuitive, often more wary of events around him and was very intelligent and calculating in his own right. Prone to sinister plots, Clouse held a close relationship to his pet, genuinely caring for it and being stricken with grief upon its death. Likewise, Clouse could be an incredibly vengeful person, holding powerful grudges; namely, against Garmadon, and as an extension, his son, Lloyd. Though calm and composed, he would usually corner his old rival, slyly reminding him of his mistakes and other evil deeds of the past in order to torture him mentally and emotionally, and when attempting to banish Garmadon to the Cursed Realm, reveled in excitement over Garmadon's predicament.
Likewise, Clouse's sense of vengeance could go on beyond his own sense of self-preservation at times, the most notable occasion in which he opted to drag Jay back into the Djinn Blade instead of escaping himself. Additionally, despite Wu's efforts to save Clouse, Clouse insisted on giving into his fate, his vengeance having been heightened to the point where he preferred death over mercy by his enemies.
In his calmer moods, Clouse would often act exasperated around the foolishness of others, though nevertheless remained seemingly indifferent to his surroundings; However, in the heat of battle, and when confronting his opponents, Clouse's voice could become more tense and strained. Likewise, Clouse was prone to having to restrain his wrath whenever threatening others, fighting, etc., his angered tone becoming more evident. Despite these strong emotions, Clouse succeeded in keeping them in check, instead slowly and darkly festering them within him, and preferred to plan revenge on those who angered for him, his plans even lasting years.
Despite his constant exasperation over his master's antics, Clouse nevertheless tolerated and respected him, displaying great loyalty towards Chen. He and his master can get along as shown when both expressed smiles as they broke up the ninja alliance with the other fighters and when they showed excitement in capturing the remaining elemental masters. However, in the wake of The Preeminent's destruction, Clouse abandoned his master to die in order to save himself.
Free of servitude, Clouse began festering his own darker ambitions, seeking to gain power and revenge on the ninja. Having resented the denial of his Lordship for many years, Clouse would slowly turn into a megalomaniac, feeling that the world owed him and thus deciding to claim it for himself. He would eventually become completely obsessed with his own personal glory and gratification, often raving over his intended fame as the one to defeat the ninja and rule all of Ninjago.
Clouse has black hair tied back in a low ponytail with a purple hair tie. He has a purple-gray markings around his eyes and above his eyebrows as well as having a mustache.
He wears a purple suit with red sleeves that has red metal plating around his body.
Behind the scenes
- He was named after Robert Clouse, the director of Enter the Dragon. This is because his debut season was inspired by the film.
- Tommy Andreasen is very fond of him, and notes they are not done with him yet, implying he may appear in the future.
- The Hageman Brothers consider him to have been "the greatest villain" and "so underutilized."
- Chen and Clouse being responsible for the betrayals of Krux and Acronix was originally a scrapped idea for The Hands of Time.
- His LEGO minifigure head features a dual sided head, with a serious look on one side and an enraged look with glowing green eyes on the other.
- Clouse was the first of the Anacondrai Cultists to be banished to the Cursed Realm.
- He was the only Anacondrai cultist not shown as a Anacondrai, due to him already being banished into the Cursed Realm before the transformation.
- An exclusive figure of him was released with issue 10 of the Ninjago Magazine. It included him with a hood on, as well as the Teapot of Tyrahn.
- He is the only Anacondrai cultist to escape the Cursed Realm before its destruction.
- Clouse is one of the most frequent antagonists the ninja have faced. He is the secondary antagonist of Season 4, responsible for the events of Season 6, and the main antagonist of the Realm of Shadows stage show and the Dark Island Trilogy.
- Along with Samukai, he is one of the two antagonists to not appear in LEGO Ninjago: Shadow of Ronin.
- Clouse is similar to Grant Ward from Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Both are extremely loyal to their masters (Chen for Clouse and John Garrett for Grant Ward) up to the point that they ignored their own personal desires, and the only thing they strived for was just to serve them. Similarly to Grant Ward, Clouse later overcame and abandoned his master during the destruction of the Cursed Realm, focusing for the first time of his own interests, just like Grant Ward after John Garrett's death. However, unlike Clouse, Grant Ward never abandoned his master until the latter's death to start focusing on his own desires and plans.
- Clouse is younger than Chen.
- Clouse is one of the only major villains to appear in three consecutive seasons, another being Garmadon.
- According to Tommy Andreasen, Clouse is smarter than Chen.
The images on Clouse need to be organized.
Chen mini-movies (non-canon)
In other media
- Way of the Departed Chapter 9
- Way of the Departed Chapter 22