One of the most common criticisms of Ninjago is how often it rehashes the concept of snake-themed villains. Back in 2012, the villainous Serpentine received praise because at the time, it was a really fresh idea, and they really fleshed out the concept with the different tribes. But then the Serpentine came back as villains for the first half of Season 2. Then Pythor (an Anacondrai) was one of the main antagonists of Season 3. Then Season 4 revolved around a group of cultists who wanted to be turned into Anacondrai…and then they were. And in Season 6, one of Nadakhan’s pirates was a Serpentine (though I’m not sure what tribe he’s from). And Pythor returned in Day Of The Departed. And in Season 7, there were the Vermillion-warriors made up of snakes. The next three seasons were devoid of any snake-themed villains, but then we got the Pyrovipers in Season 11, which people were NOT happy about. It didn’t help that Aspheera was one of, if not the, weakest villains we’ve gotten out of Ninjago.
And now, in Season
15 14, there’s the Merlopians. They use the same pieces as the Pyrovipers, but they’re not snakes, they’re eels…right?
Nonetheless, I find myself agreeing with the detractors that say Ninjago just refuses to stop going back to the “snake villains” well. They can be really creative when they want to. We’ve had the Skulkin, the Nindroids, the ghosts, the sky pirates, the Sons Of Garmadon, the dragon hunters, the Blizzard Samurai, the Awakened Warriors, and the Keepers. Why is it that the show’s creators keep making new snake-themed villains? Did those waves of sets sell better or something?
Tommy Andreasen* serpent so much budget on the snake designs, he just wants to get hiss money’s worth.
*I might have misspelled that name.
I mean, I love snakes (it’s part of the reason I like Rahkshi so much) so I usually end up buying a lot more of them than I would other Ninjago sets.
I only really got into Ninjago in 2015, and the first set I got second-hand was the Rattlecopter. I soon acquired many Serpentine figures from one of my friends and bought Skales off eBay. I began to amass an army of Anacondrai cultists, during Skybound my main goal was to acquire Clancee, the only set I bought in Day of the Departed was the Ultra Stealth Raider because it had Chen and Eyezorai and I bought most of the snake-focused sets from Hands of Time while ignoring the others. During Sons of Garmadon I think I only bought Street Race of Snake Jaguar because it had ‘snake’ in the title. I was disappointed to find that there were no snakes included. For Legacy I only bought the Storm Fighter for Pythor and when Season 11 came around, the only set I was focused on getting was Fire Fang, and since then I haven’t been focused on Ninjago because no snakes are around!
So, for me at least, they certainly sell better, but I can’t say for other people.
I feel like this is mostly LEGO’s fault. They sometimes just wanna cut down on the budget by just recycling previous successful villains, and not bothering with creating brand new villains.
This is especially the case for the latest wave, Seabound, where they straight up re-used the same Snake head molds from 2019, despite the underwater theme which had so much potential to give us some awesome new villains.
Probably significance in culture as well as the fact that they sell well
They’re the same snakes, just shedding their skins.
Some questions are better left unanswered.
think new villain. hard. grug paint snake new color. grug sell snake. grug save time.
ouroboros was also referred to a few times in Ninjago. It has significance
Despite the fact that Ninjago sucked out the budgets for Chima and Bionicle G2
Then what’s the point of even asking them?
I think I know what you’re referring to…
That was back in 2014-2016 when Ninjago was in its hayday. Nowdays, LEGO doesn’t seem to mind if Ninjago’s budget is lower.
well ninjago represents adam and eve and in and eve snakes reperesent the devil
I think the snakes work somewhat well. From what I understand, in NINJAGO, the Serpentine are about as numerous and important as humans. Therefore, it makes sense to have both humans and serpentine prominent. Humans and Serpentine did not have the best relations with each other, explaining why they come in opposition to one another. And it is not like NINJAGO uses only Humans and Serpentine as its characters. There are the Dragons, which are very prominent, and other species like say the Djinn and Oni.
But it is true, that while it adds cohesivness to the universe, it can be sometimes too much, and having more creativity is certainly a good thing. Vermillion are to me well done variation on standard Serpentine. They are not Serpentine proper, they are a variation, like Skulkin were of humans, more interesting than to have just another standard Serpentine.