|“No! You will obey me now!”|
|— Samukai to Lord Garmadon, before his death.|
Lord Garmadon (formerly)
|Weapon of choice||Bone Daggers|
|First Appearance||Way of the Ninja|
|Voiced by||Michael Kopsa|
Samukai was a fearsome Skulkin General with four arms. He was the King of the Underworld until Lord Garmadon usurped his title. Nonetheless, Samukai retained a position high on the Underworld hierarchy as Garmadon's lieutenant and the Skulkin General of Fire, carrying out his superior's will until given the chance to possess all four weapons (in which case he was still, ironically, carrying out Garmadon's plan without realizing until it was too late).
At an unknown point in time, Samukai came into conflict with Sensei Wu and Garmadon, only to be defeated by the two brothers. Either as a result of this defeat or afterwards, he died and ended up in the Underworld, where he proceeded to become its king.
After Garmadon was banished to the Underworld, Samukai promptly proceeded to confront his nemesis alongside several Skulkin, gloating over his predictions of the former's banishment turning true. Declaring revenge on Garmadon through plans to subject him to an afterlife of pain and suffering, Samukai clashed with his old foe. However, he was ultimately defeated when Garmadon used Spinjitzu, and watched in humiliation as his victorious opponent donned the helmet that had once signified his own authority. As a result, he was demoted as the Skulkin General of Fire.
The Last Voyage (Flashback)
In order to prepare for the upcoming hunt for the Golden Weapons, Samukai tracked down Dr. Julien alongside his lieutenants Nuckal and Kruncha to his workshop in Birchwood Forest. Resurrecting the inventor with his elixir, Samukai forced Julien to build war machines for him, holding his Nindroid son, Zane, hostage. After imprisoning Julien at the Lighthouse Prison and chaining the Leviathan to the island as a guard, Samukai proceeded to drop Zane off at a nearby village before the Nindroid could activate.
Once his vehicles were created, Samukai lead an attack on Ignacia Village alongside several Skulking in search for the Map to the Golden Weapons. In response to Kai and Nya managing to defend themselves, he personally confronted the former and easily defeated Kai within seconds. Before Samukai could finish Kai off, however, Sensei Wu knocked him aside with a Spinjitzu vortex. Casually conversing with his old nemesis, Samukai, realizing his lieutenants had already found the map and that Nya was vulnerable, proceeded to throw his daggers at a nearby water tower, causing it to collapse and forcing Wu to save Kai. Taking advantage of the distraction, Samukai ordered Kruncha to capture Nya, and with her hostage, fled the village to return to the Underworld.
Arriving at the Caves of Despair, the ninja found their nemesis to have already set up camp there in search of the Scythe of Quakes. Sneaking into his watchtower, the ninja stole the Map of the Golden Weapons and proceeded from there, unbeknownst to him; However, when Jay accidentally revealed their location, he promptly led his forces to ambush the ninja while they retrieved the Golden Weapon for him. Upon their arrival, Samukai then attacked the group, only for the ninja to learn Spinjitzu and fight back long enough for the Earth Dragon to arrive, forcing him to call a retreat. Later on, he reported to Lord Garmadon under a fearful guise, only to finally be informed of the latter's plan.
Upon being alerted to Kai and Zane's journey to the latter's home village where he had been dropped off at, Samukai, unable to understand why the Ice Ninja would visit for any reason other than tactical, proceeded to lay a trap for the both of them. After taking all of the villagers hostage, he trapped Kai and Zane in the confines of several mirror-like walls, tricking them into thinking the entire village had been abandoned overnight. However, after the two ninja saw through the ruse, they proceeded to attack Samukai and his Skulkin. In the ensuing chaos, Samukai was finally told of Zane's true reasons for visiting his home village, and surprised, saw no more use in fighting and promptly disappeared through a nearby entrance to the Underworld.
While the ninja went after the Nun-chuks of Lightning, Samukai attempted to ambush them from behind, only for Zane to alert his fellow teammates of the latter's presence. Even as the ninja proceeded to escape with the Golden Weapon in hand, Samukai secretly gloated to himself over the plan's approaching success.
Later, with Kai and Sensei Wu at the Fire Temple to confront Garmadon, Samukai confronted the sleeping Zane, Jay, and Cole alongside his army and tied the three of them up. Gloating over his success, he promptly claimed the three Golden Weapons they had been guarding and declared their ascent to the Fire Temple, only for Garmadon to warn him that Wu had taken the Sword of Fire to the Underworld. Changing plans, Samukai led his forces on their vehicles to an entrance to their home realm, only to be pursued by Jay, Cole, and Zane. However, after witnessing them hold off his minions, Samukai proceeded to take command of the Skull Truck, throwing the ninja off and finally making his trip to the Underworld.
As Sensei Wu confronted his brother within the Dark Fortress, Samukai, on the latter's behest, challenged his old foe to a final rematch, with Sensei Wu armed with the Sword of Fire while he himself wielded the remaining Golden Weapons. Despite Wu's best efforts, he ultimately reigned victorious and proceeded to claim the Sword of Fire, even as the ninja arrived to witness Garmadon's triumph.
However, upon Garmadon's order to be given the Golden Weapons, Samukai revealed his own plans to betray the Dark Lord. Before he could exact his long-awaited revenge, however, the Golden Weapons began to overload Samukai with their power. Even as Garmadon gloated that it was just as he had planned, the resulting explosion created a tear through space and time, vaporizing Samukai in the process. Upon his disintegration, a portal to the Dark Realm was all that remained, allowing Garmadon to escape the Underworld after his hundreds of years in imprisonment.
After the ninja and Garmadon went back in time, the latter proceeded to infiltrate Samukai's army under the disguise of a generic Skulkin. Afterwards, he continued his attack on Ignacia Village as normal, only for the timeline to be altered when his command for Nya's kidnapping was sabotaged by Garmadon. Consequently, he called a retreat and with his army intact and the Map of the Golden Weapons fled.
During their journey to a portal to the Underworld, Samukai angrily yelled at his subordinates over their failure, in the process prompting Nuckal to accidentally reveal the presence of the future ninja to an eavesdropping Garmadon. Afterwards, he again lectured his minions at a campfire, only for Kruncha to return with a kidnapped Nya in tow. After gloating to the past Garmadon over their success, he left.
As a result of the destruction of the Mega Weapon, the events of the alternate timeline were erased.
As part of a television program directed by Dareth, a stuntman dressed up as Samukai.
A statue of Samukai was placed in the Ninjago Museum of History's Hall of Villainy exhibit.
The King of the Underworld, Samukai is a completely merciless being, incapable of feeling several human emotions such as empathy, compassion, mercy, etc. Described as a brilliant military leader, he resorts to fear in order to keep his army in line, and holds deep grudges towards several of his enemies, as well as an instinctive hatred towards all living things.
Ruthless and unwilling to give up in his pursuit of power, he likewise managed to keep the guise of a meek subordinate around his nemesis Garmadon, only to reveal his true colors upon claiming the Golden Weapons. Additionally, Samukai is not unwilling to resort to taking hostages and even outright lying to get what he wants, taking advantage of unsuspecting beings such as the Leviathan and Dr. Julien to achieve his goals.
However, despite his merciless, unfeeling determination and lack of morality, Samukai's greatest weakness lies in his lack of empathy and understanding of human emotion; This ultimately shone when, upon discovering Zane's planned visit to his home village, he was unable to comprehend the sentimentality of the former's visit and instead decided that Zane must've been seeking to acquire some material, such as treasure.
Powers and Abilities
As the King of the Underworld, Samukai wielded multiple abilities. Being a Skulkin, he had a near-indestructibility granted to him due to his undead status, though this was unable to protect him from the Golden Weapons. Nevertheless, Samukai could also make all of his bones operate independently from the rest, and was able to resurrect the dead using an elixir of his own creation.
Additionally, Samukai wielded great strength and battle prowess, especially thanks to his additional set of arms. He could also travel through entrances to the Underworld without the assistance of a Skulkin vehicle, though when carrying cargo such as the Golden Weapons, had to rely on the help of his army's transportation. At the same time, he was also described as being a brilliant leader and tactical genius in the eyes of Sensei Wu, whom had countless years of experience.
Samukai had four arms and a large head. He also had two scars above his eyes, and wore the standard chest plate of a fire-based General of the Skeleton Army. He once wore the helmet Lord Garmadon wore in 2011, as it seems this helmet goes to the ruler of the Underworld and the owner had control over the skeleton army.
In battle, Samukai generally wielded four daggers with small skulls on the hilts. Apart from general melee combat, he could also twirl the blades in his hands, enhancing their cutting power, or throw them with impressive accuracy at enemies or objects.
After attacking the Ninja in the Forest of Tranquility, Samukai gained three of the four Golden Weapons; the Scythe of Quakes, the Shurikens of Ice, and the Nunchucks of Lightning. He used them all to great effect against Sensei Wu, overwhelming him with the combined elements of Ice, Lightning, and Earth.
However, when he picked up the Sword of Fire and attempted to use all four Golden Weapons against Lord Garmadon, he was destroyed, as their combined power would overwhelm anyone apart from the First Spinjitzu Master. In fact, Lord Garmadon had counted on Samukai's betrayal giving him the means of making himself powerful enough to possess all four Golden Weapons at once.
- Samukai's name is a pun on of the word "Samurai."
- His appearance and role in the series are reminiscent of General Grievous (from Star Wars). Notably, both Samukai and Grievous are four-armed generals who are predominantly white in coloration and who act as the second-in-command of the evil forces. In "Way of the Ninja," Samukai even used a similar technique to General Grievous, rapidly spinning his weapons in his hands to act as shields and saws. Both were also deceived by their "masters" as part of a larger plot, and were unaware that they were mere pawns. However, Samukai differs from Grievous in rebelling against his master, and in being made aware of his master's intent to betray him before meeting his demise.
- Samukai is the only Skulkin that doesn't have a spinner or a Character Card. This was due to his unique minifigure design making the spinner more or less stable (a problem that would later prevent the Serpentine Generals from appearing in spinner sets), or because his four arms would give players more options on weapon placement, making Samukai a potential game-breaker against other "normal" characters.
- Samukai is a playable character in LEGO Ninjago: Tournament.
- He was mentioned in Shadow of Ronin, despite ironically being one of the few characters, alongside the Overlord and Clouse, to not be playable.
- He is one of the only characters with four arms, the others being Garmadon (formerly), General Kozu, the Giant Stone Warrior, the Overlord (possessing Garmadon), and Nadakhan.
- The LEGO: Ninjago website indicated that the skull on the table holding Clouse's Book of Spells was that of Samukai.
- In the sets, Samukai's armor is black, yet in the pilot episodes, it has a brown coloration. This was later fixed in "Wrong Place, Wrong Time," where all scenes he appeared in, even repeats, had his armor recolored to black.