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|The Overlord||Digital Overlord|
|“Where there is Light, there will always be Shadow!”|
|— The Overlord to Lloyd|
The Overlord is the creator of the Stone Army and the source of all Darkness in Ninjago. A sinister dark entity, he first appeared as a manifestation of Darkness itself that challenged the First Spinjitzu Master. After a lengthy battle, the First Spinjitzu Master succeeded, defeating the Stone Army and trapping the Overlord on the Dark Island. Thousands of years later, Lord Garmadon was confronted by the Overlord's spirit, who influenced him to join forces. Garmadon assumed command of the Stone Army, which constructed an ultimate weapon. Eventually, the Overlord revealed he was using Garmadon and possessed his body—commencing a metamorphosis that turned him into a giant dragon. The Ninja and Lloyd returned to Ninjago, where Lloyd fought and defeated the Overlord in the final battle.
Some time later, the Overlord once again returned in the form of a digital virus. With the help of Pythor and the Nindroids, the Overlord became the all-powerful Golden Master using the Golden Weapons and Lloyd's Golden Power. In a final effort to defeat the Overlord, Zane sacrificed himself, destroying their physical forms. As the balance must be maintained, the Overlord survived, yet his spirit is dormant. A statue of him was to be placed in the Ninjago Museum of History prior to the Time Twins' return.
In the Beginning
Before Ninjago's creation, there were two kinds of beings with unfathomable power: the Oni and the Dragon. The Dragons had the power to create, while the Oni had the power to destroy; and so, they waged war against each other. One day, a child was born of both powers, the First Spinjitzu Master, who went on to create a world of light and darkness, these powers had been past down to him from their respective owners.
From the shadows of the new world, the Overlord emerged. Risen to counterbalance the light of the land, the Overlord challenged the First Spinjitzu Master to a battle for control of Ninjago.
The battle eventually ground into a stalemate, so the Overlord created the Stone Army to turn the tide in his favor. Realizing that he would be overcome, the First Spinjitzu Master used all of his strength to split Ninjago into two equal halves, which would later become two islands—one half remained as Ninjago, and the other became the Island of Darkness. This balanced the forces of light and darkness, preventing the Overlord from leaving the Island of Darkness as it slowly sank beneath the sea. For thousands of years, he plotted the events that would lead to his return.
After being betrayed by Skales and falling into the Endless Ocean, Lord Garmadon was carried to the shores of the Island of Darkness, now just a nondescript tropical island. Appearing before Garmadon as a pulsing sphere of energy, the Overlord guided the four-armed villain through the jungle, promising to fulfill his dream of remaking Ninjago in his own image. Although skeptical and suspicious of the mysterious voice, Lord Garmadon followed the Overlord's instructions and activated a mechanism in a rock at the center of the island, causing the rest of the Island of Darkness to rise from the sea.
With the Island of Darkness restored, the Overlord had Lord Garmadon climb a series of rugged cliffs, assuring him that a great power lay at the end of his trial. Eventually, Lord Garmadon arrived in front of the Celestial Clock, and the Overlord told him to remove the Helmet of Shadows from its pedestal. As Garmadon placed the Helmet on his head, the hands of the Celestial Clock began to move. The Overlord explained that the helmet gave Garmadon control of the Stone Army, while the Celestial Clock was counting down to the final battle between good and evil—a battle that the Overlord intended to win.
When Lord Garmadon went to oversee the Stone Army's mining operations, the Overlord told him that the soldiers were searching for Dark Matter, a powerful evil material that could be used to construct an ultimate weapon for the forces of darkness. After hearing this, Garmadon became much more excited about the mining.
As construction of the ultimate weapon continued, the Overlord warned Lord Garmadon that he sensed the presence of the Ninja on the Island of Darkness. Garmadon responded by sending Stone Warriors across the island to hunt the Ninja down, only to find them narrowly escaping capture in his own base camp. The Overlord realized that the Ninja were looking for the Temple of Light, and told Garmadon about the location's significance.
Unfortunately for the forces of evil, the Ninja succeeded in their quest, and the Stone Army was driven off by their renewed elemental powers and Lloyd's new "Golden Dragon" technique. Learning of this development atop the mountain where the Celestial Clock rested, the Overlord alleviated Garmadon's concerns by reminding him that their forces were also growing stronger, and the countdown to the final battle continued unabated.
As the ultimate weapon neared completion and the Celestial Clock neared the end of its countdown, the Overlord sensed a growing conflict within Garmadon. The latter insisted that he wanted nothing more than to consume Ninjago with darkness, but the Overlord questioned Garmadon's resolve, noting that the final battle would inevitably bring him into contact with Lloyd. His prodding caused Garmadon to explode with rage and redouble work on the ultimate weapon, pleasing the Overlord.
When the Ninja managed to steal the Helmet of Shadows, Garmadon sent the Stone Army in pursuit, only for the Overlord to remind him that the Ninja could control the army if one of them donned the Helmet. Acknowledging this possibility, Garmadon instead opted to pursue the Ninjas' Power Drill with his own robot, but failed to stop them from reaching the Celestial Clock. However, their unfamiliarity with the clock's design—coupled with the interference of General Kozu—prevented the Ninja from replacing the Helmet of Shadows before the countdown finally ended. As Lord Garmadon wondered what was going on, the Overlord explained that the final battle was about to begin, and led his servant back to his base camp, where the Garmatron was finally completed.
As Garmadon admired the Garmatron, the Stone Army returned with Nya as a prisoner. The Overlord watched as Garmadon immersed Nya in Dark Matter, infecting her with evil and transforming her into a loyal servant of darkness. With the test complete, the Overlord accompanied his forces as the Garmatron left the camp and headed for the coast.
Upon arrival, the Overlord encouraged Garmadon to fire the Garmatron's main cannon across the ocean—its Dark Matter warheads would infect Ninjago piece by piece, remaking it in Garmadon's image. Unfortunately, Lord Garmadon was distracted when Lloyd, Master Wu, and Misako arrived and begged him to stop—although they failed to reach the villain, their interference prevented the Overlord from warning Garmadon about the main cannon's twenty-second warmup period. Despite this, the Stone Army managed to delay the heroes until the Garmatron could fire, thereby corrupting Ignacia.
As Lord Garmadon dropped Lloyd and General Kozu down a trapdoor and fired another shot of Dark Matter at Jamanakai Village, the balance between light and darkness shifted enough for the Overlord to begin manifesting in the world once more. At this point, the Overlord revealed that he had been using Lord Garmadon all along—the four-armed villain had only been a pawn in the Overlord's millenia-long plan to free himself and conquer Ninjago. Lord Garmadon angrily protested at this (both at being used and because the Overlord was "stealing" one of his previous plans), but the Overlord took over his body, declaring that his "metamorphosis" had begun.
In an attempt to gain even more power, the Overlord set the Garmatron's sights on Ninjago City, only to realize that the Ninja were interfering with the Stone Army's attempts to reload the cannon. He sent General Kozu to secure the bullets, but ended up accidentally firing him into Ninjago City when Master Wu kicked the general into the Garmatron's loading port. The Overlord was then confronted by Lloyd, who was determined to stop the villain before he could corrupt any more of Ninjago.
A fierce battle erupted, with the Overlord gaining the upper hand. However, Lloyd called out to his father, and Lord Garmadon's attempts to reach out to his son caused the Overlord to weaken momentarily. Taking his chance, Lloyd launched a furious assault, and Lord Garmadon desperately struggled against the Overlord's control in order to avoid harming his own son. Unfortunately, the Overlord regained control over Garmadon's body and overcame the Green Ninja's energy beam, trapping Lloyd in a sphere of darkness and hurling him across the beach, breaking his leg. Weary of the Ninja's interference, the Overlord opened a portal to Ninjago City and led his army through it, leaving the Ninja stranded on the Island of Darkness.
The Overlord and his army appeared in the middle of Ninjago City, where the former immediately began bombarding everything in sight with Dark Matter fired from the Garmatron's turrets. The influx of darkness accelerated the Overlord's metamorphosis, allowing him to regain his true form. Leaving his helmet in the streets, the Overlord proceeded to transform the Garmatron into a tower-like fortress from which to oversee the newly-corrupted city, setting Nya and the Stone Army to defend it.
When the Ninja returned and attacked the tower, the Overlord let his minions do the work against his foes until Dareth gained control of the Stone Army by donning the Helmet of Shadows. He began spitting masses of darkness at the ascending Ninja, corrupting Cole, Jay, and Zane. With Kai occupying his corrupted sister and the Ultra Dragon shot down, the Overlord turned to the top of the stairs to find only an injured, unarmed Lloyd standing against him. The Overlord scoffed at the Green Ninja's defiance, but Lloyd was able to unlock his full potential, becoming the Ultimate Spinjitzu Master.
Despite his own considerable power, the Overlord was overwhelmed by Lloyd's new abilities. Even taking the fight to the sky failed to provide an advantage, as Lloyd summoned the Golden Dragon to pursue the ultimate evil. Enraged at the mortal's persistence, the Overlord surrounded Lloyd in a massive sphere of darkness and attempted to devour him. In turn, Lloyd used his powers within the Overlord's mouth—the dark dragon had only enough time to roar in fury and denial before he was obliterated, removing the taint of darkness from Ninjago City, the corrupted heroes, and even Lord Garmadon.
Reconstruction (between Season 2 and Season 3)
Unbeknownst to the heroes, the Overlord was not destroyed by his battle with Lloyd although he was almost reduced to nothing. When Borg Tower was built in the former resting place of the Garmatron, the Overlord somehow infected the network as the Digital Overlord virus.
The Digital Overlord infects Cyrus Borg through his artificial limbs, transforming him into the villainous OverBorg. The Digital Overlord proceeds to spread his corruption to all of the robots in New Ninjago City, and sends them after the Ninja; however, they escape.
The Digital Overlord collects Lloyd's Golden Power to try to make a new body, but soon run out of power. The Overlord tells P.I.X.A.L. he needs more of Lloyd's Golden Power, and changes his plan to capturing Lloyd instead of getting the Techno Blades.The Stranger stole the Hard Drive of the Overlord then put it in the Computer which was powered by Electrocobrai.
The Overlord is outraged that he failed to procure Lloyd however, The Stranger explains that his attack on the Ninja was merely a plot for them to send the Falcon, of which he now controls. With Lloyd heading into Hiroshi's Labyrinth, it will be the perfect place to spring a trap. Delighted by this news, the Overlord tells the stranger that he likes him due to the deviousness of the plan and laughs as his vengeance gets within reach.
Lloyd's location has been revealed and is clear for capture; however, the Stranger said that their low on power and he gets a tank full of Electrocobrais and is fully operational to capture the Golden Ninja to conquer his Power to become the Golden Master.
When the Ninja entered the Digiverse in a bid to shut the Overlord down for good, the villain sent Pythor and the Nindroids to attack their physical bodies while he infiltrated the Digiverse to attack their consciousnesses. His digital self was erased by the Techno Blades, seemingly destroying his consciousness, but before he was erased he escaped into his new incomplete "Golden Master Body."
Pythor and the Nindroids managed to recover the Mechdragon and retrieve the Overlord from within it. However, due to the incomplete transfer of Lloyd's golden power, the Overlord was left as an insubstantial blob—not wishing the Nindroids to behold his weakened condition, he had Pythor conceal him.
Learning that Lloyd had divided his Golden powers between himself and the other four ninja, the Overlord initiated Codename: Arcturus, a plan to acquire the Golden Weapons from space (where they had been sent following the events of "Wrong Place, Wrong Time"). Despite the Ninjas' efforts, the Overlord and Pythor succeeded in completing their rocket and launching it from the Lost City of Ouroboros. Unbeknownst to the Overlord, however, the five Ninja boarded the rocket just before it took off.
The Overlord's new body is taken to Borg Tower by the Nindroids to await the arrival of the Golden Weapons.
He finally managed to get the Golden Weapons to become the Golden Master and create his mech. Later when his Destructive Reign begins, The Ninja manage to head back to New Ninjago City and get the Indestructible and Invulnerable powers to stop him including getting a pill which could shrink the Overlord in size. When Wu and Garmadon throws the pill to him, Pythor manages to get the pill which saved the Overlord; however, Pythor had to face consequences of turning small and being chased by the Falcon. But Zane managed to defeat him with his Ice Powers and were both pulled into the explosion leaving the Overlord's helmet to roll, destroying his physical form.
After the destruction of his physical form, his spirit remains dormant, as he can never be truly destroyed.
The Corridor of Elders (Flashback)
Lloyd has a flashback about the Overlord possessing Garmadon.
While Dr. Saunders is giving the Ninja a tour of the Ninjago Museum of History's latest exhibit, the Hall of Villainy, Kai mentions that every villain they've ever fought has a statue in the museum. In response, Saunders says that there's still many more statues to be added, including ones of the Overlord and the Golden Master. Based on this statement, it is possible the Overlord will have more than one statue in the museum.
A remnant of the Overlord Virus' code (trapped in a Memory Loop) was found in Zane, and slowly began corrupting him in order to take control of Zane's body and exact his revenge on the Ninja. But by using good memories, they managed to erase the rest of the Overlord Virus, for good.
After the reconstruction of the Monastery of Spinjitzu, a mural was created, depicting the major historical events the ninja had faced. Several parts of the mural depicted the Overlord (In Dragon form and in Golden Master form).
The Overlord has shown to be serious and cunning, though he is often heavily reliant on metaphysical concepts and prophecized events (destiny, the balance, the final battle, the prophecy of the golden master, etc.)
As is to be expected from the embodiment of darkness, the Overlord is very cruel and devoid of empathy and seems to enjoy inflicting pain and despair upon his enemies. In fact, he has been known to go out of his way to do so, taunting them in hopeless situations.
The Overlord has only ever shown respect for one person; that person being Pythor. That respect going as far as to include Pythor as an ally during the attempted Golden Master apocalypse.
During Misako's telling of Ninjago's origins (seen in "The Stone Army"), the Overlord was depicted as a towering mass of dark fire with a vaguely humanoid shape.
When Lord Garmadon arrived on the Island of Darkness, the Overlord appeared as an orb of purple energy with a pale yellow core. The orb pulsed as the Overlord spoke.
After possessing Lord Garmadon's body, the Overlord manifested as a larger, more demonic version of Garmadon himself. Notable differences included longer limbs ending in clawed hands and feet, short spikes erupting from his shoulders and back, glowing purple eyes, and elongated reptilian jaws filled with long fangs.
In "Rise of the Spinjitzu Master," the Overlord reverted to his original form, a monstrous black dragon with four long feelers on its face, massive, tattered black wings instead of arms, and a broad, toothy mouth.
"Enter the Digiverse" saw the Overlord appear in two different forms. The first was that of a shadowy, armored humanoid, as he was in the process of transforming into the legendary Golden Master. When confronting the ninja inside the Digiverse, he took a shadowy humanoid form of great size that possessed a number of tentacles.
In "Codename: Arcturus," the Overlord had become an amorphous blob, due to his interrupted transformation into the Golden Master.
Lastly, in "The Titanium Ninja," the Overlord assumed his golden master form as a black and purple humanoid figure with a face akin to the mid-metamorphosis form he assumed in Garmadon's body. Furthermore, he was adorned with golden skeletal armor and a black helmet.
A remnant of the Overlord's spirit was sealed into Zane's memory and began to posses him in "Decoded." When he was "unlocked" by the Ninja, he looked similar to his blob form, but mahogany colored with yellow, red-ringed eyes. Unlike his last digital form, he can't jump to another piece of technology.
Powers and Abilities
The Overlord was credited with the creation of the Stone Army, implying that he may possess the element of Creation (or a dark equivalent). In his orb form, he was able to float freely, allowing him to accompany Lord Garmadon wherever he travels on the Island of Darkness. He also appeared to have some form of enhanced perception, as he immediately sensed the Ninjas' arrival on the Island of Darkness.
After using Lord Garmadon's body to retake a physical form, the Overlord gained enhanced physical strength and high durability, easily able to take Lloyd's attacks and overpower him, and the ability to release dark energy from his hands. He usually fired this energy as offensive beam attacks, which could overpower Lloyd's energy beams and break his legs, but he could also use it to fly; by releasing small "jets" of energy from his lower pair of hands, the Overlord was able to hover in the air or propel himself at varying speeds.
In his original form, the Overlord's strength and durability increased even further, due to his massive size. He could fly with the use of his large wings, breath dark fire, and spit masses of pure darkness that corrupt anything they hit (much like the Garmatron's Dark Matter shots). At the end of his battle with Lloyd, he displayed the ability to transform himself into a large orb of shadows that engulfs his foe—within the orb, his head grew to many times its original size, although it is unclear if the rest of his body was still present or if the Overlord could simply manifest parts of himself at will within the sphere. Even before his transformation in the Golden Master, he was the most powerful enemy the Ninja ever met.
When he became the legendary "Golden Master" he tried to shoot Kai with a beam of Golden Energy. Also he was able to use Golden Energy to levatate cars in mid air. He even threw one at Nya. When the Ninja got Stone Armor, the Overlord, like the First Spinjitzu Master, shaped roof tiles into a massive arm and hand in a attempt to crush the Ninja; despite this, he failed to crush them. At the end of the episode he caught the Ninja with beams of Golden Energy which he had shaped like a colossal spider web. Despite all these traits he was defeated by Zane.
- Main article: The Overlord (Relationships)
- His minifigure has sloped legs, instead of a cape as shown in the television series.
- According to Tommy Andreasen on Twitter, the Overlord is the most powerful antagonist in the series.
- Although he is extremely ancient, he is not the first evil to come into existence in the realms; the Oni are, though he is Ninjago's original evil and the First Spinjitzu Master's arch-enemy.
- The Overlord is the only character in Ninjago who is immortal.
- The Overlord views the environment with thermal vision in his "spirit" form.
- In the show, the Ninja mistook his titles twice for characters they were already familiar with: Dark Lord (they thought it referred to Garmadon) and Golden Master (the Ninja mistook Lloyd for being the Golden Master).
- The Overlord is the manifestation of darkness and evil, but he needs a body to use his powers. For instance, he was only able to use Darkness while he possessed Garmadon. When his transformation into his original form was complete he could use his full powers. In his Golden Master form, he had both Darkness and the Golden Power.
- The Overlord's spirit being indestructible may be due to him being part of the balance. Misako said that "in order for there to be light, there must be shadow," and since the Overlord is the main embodiment of shadow, he's part of the balance.
- Although his fight with Zane may have destroyed his Golden Master body, it didn't necessarily destroy his spirit (since the Ultimate Spinjitzu Master couldn't do this either).
- The Overlord and Garmadon are the only villains to be the main antagonist in more than one season.
- The Overlord and the First Spinjitzu Master were the first Elemental Masters in the realm of Ninjago.
- A statue of his dragon form was part of the Ninja exhibit at the Ninjago Museum of History.
- Along with Clouse and Samukai, he is one of the three antagonists to not appear in LEGO Ninjago: Shadow of Ronin.
- The First Spinjitzu Master, Garmadon (with his True Potential), and the Overlord are the three most powerful characters in the series.
- According to Misako, the Overlord's original form is a Dragon.
- He is the first villain to use Spinjitzu against the Ninja.
- In the Ninjago Legacy sets, the Overlord received an updated design that seems to be an amalgamation of his possessed Garmadon and Golden Master forms. This design did not make an appearance in "Tales from the Monastery of Spinjitzu."