|“Hah! Too bad, thought I'd find something special here.”|
|— Master Wu to Kai|
|"Way of the Ninja"|
|Season Pilot, Episode 1|
|Air date||January 14, 2011|
|Written by||Dan & Kevin Hageman|
|Directed by||Michael Hegner and Justin Murphy|
"The Golden Weapon"
At Four Weapons Blacksmith, siblings Kai and Nya were busy crafting weapons when Master Wu came down the road, and began to browse around their shop. Kai rudely told him that their shop was the "Four Weapons, not for browsing," and Master Wu left.
Moments later, a dark cloud spread over Ignacia, signaling the arrival of the Skulkin. Atop the Skull Truck, Nuckal begged the Skulkin leader, Samukai, to let him lead the attack, claiming that he was "dying to go down there." His friend, Kruncha, irritably reminded him that they were already dead. Samukai ordered his troops to attack, and the Skull Truck raced towards the blacksmith shop, surrounded by skeletal motorcycles.
Upon seeing the approaching skeletons, Nya wondered aloud what was going on, but Kai simply told her to stay in the shop while he confronted the invaders. Donning armor and taking up a sword, he challenged the Skulkin forces, doing surprisingly well despite the undead warriors' physical and numerical advantages. Wielding a bamboo staff, Nya joined in—despite Kai's warnings—and the two of them managed to fend off the Skulkin. Meanwhile, unnoticed, Kruncha and Nuckal snuck into the store, searching for something. After a scuffle with each other, the Generals found what they sought on the back of the shop's sign—a large piece of parchment.
With the soldiers defeated, Kai challenged Samukai himself, but the four-armed skeleton quickly disarmed him and knocked him to the ground. Master Wu intervened before Samukai could deliver the finishing blow, knocking the Skulkin General around with a strange golden tornado of energy. After exchanging a few taunts, Samukai threw his daggers at a nearby water tower, forcing Master Wu to save Kai before the structure collapsed. Retreating to the Skull Truck with his fellow Generals, Samukai told Kruncha to "take the girl!" In response, Kruncha fired the truck's bone hand, snatching Nya as the skeletons retreated to the Underworld.
Kai thanked Master Wu for saving him, but demanded to know what had just occured. Master Wu explained that the Skulkin were acting on the orders of Lord Garmadon, the evil older brother of Master Wu himself. They had been battling for most of their lives, Garmadon constantly seeking a means of escaping his prison in the Underworld. Wu then told Kai that he sensed the "Fire" within him, which would allow Kai to save Nya. Wu spoke of a catch, however: He would first have to train to be a ninja. Kai was extremely confused, but he complied.
At the Monastery of Spinjitzu, Master Wu immediately put Kai through the training course in the courtyard. After a few tries, Kai successfully completed the course, and Master Wu told him that his final test would be the day after. Satisfied with his progress, Kai prepared for bed, only to be ambushed by three mysterious black ninja.
- Cole - Kirby Morrow
- Garmadon - Mark Oliver
- Jay - Michael Adamthwaite
- Kai - Vincent Tong
- Kruncha - Brian Drummond
- Nuckal - Brian Drummond
- Nya - Kelly Metzger
- Samukai - Michael Kopsa
- Wu - Paul Dobson
- Zane - Brent Miller
For the transcript of this episode, click here.
- Parts of this episode—along with parts of "The Golden Weapon" and "King of Shadows"—appeared in the Season 2 episode, "Wrong Place, Wrong Time."
- In Master Wu's story, the First Spinjitzu Master's hair is different than its appearance in the episode "Tick Tock," and a few other flashback episodes. The designs of the young Garmadon and Wu are also different.
- Vincent Tong released an image of the first page of this episode's script on Twitter on January 14, 2016 to celebrate the five year anniversary of Ninjago.
- Some airings of this episode place it and "The Golden Weapon" together as a single episode, due to the combined time length being 20 minutes, the normal length of an episode.
- Although it is the first episode of the series, numerically Episode 1 Rise of the Snakes is the first episode of the series.
- When Master Wu corrects Kai when he failed to say "Spinjitzu," his staff shortens in length.