Snake Eyes
GI Joe

The shrouded heritage of ninjas dates back again to feudal Japan but these martial arts masters became an unavoidable pop tradition fad in the 1980s. The 1982 GI Joe action figure line involved breakout character Snake Eyes, a ninjutsu-qualified US commando whose broken vocal cords built him basically silent but fatal. In the new prequel film, Henry Golding offers a chattier acquire on the mythos.

Cho Osaki
The Ninja trilogy

The Japanese actor Shô Kosugi built a free trilogy of ninja flicks for low cost thrill specialists Cannon Films in the 1980s. In Enter the Ninja (1981) he was a baddie in Ninja III: The Domination (1984) he was an eye patch-sporting exorcist. As Cho Osaki in Revenge of the Ninja (1983) he acquired to participate in the guide, a noble, retired shinobi smashing a heroin ring.

The Metal Equipment franchise

From early arcade traditional Shinobi to the unkillable Mortal Kombat franchise, movie video games have often beloved a fantastic ninja. Raiden was the breakdancing cyborg shinobi from the Metal Gear collection who attained his individual spin-off in 2013. The brilliantly titled Metal Gear Mounting: Revengeance video game additional Fruit Ninja-model sword-swiping to his talent set.

What did you sai … Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck in Daredevil. Photograph: Reuters

Elektra Natchios

The on-off squeeze of Marvel’s blind crimefighter, Elektra is heir to a Greek delivery fortune with a side hustle as a ninja assassin. Embodied on the significant display by Jennifer Garner in 2003 – and much more recently by Élodie Yung on Netflix – she is notorious for her wicked sai blades and seeming incapability to remain useless.

Colin King

What if James Bond was Batman? That is the premise of Ninjak, the comedian-starring, katana-wielding MI6 agent Colin King. He’s absent by numerous revamps considering the fact that debuting in 1993 but the recent Ninjak sequence – that includes art by Javier Pulido – evokes psychedelic 1960s spy-fi these kinds of as The Prisoner.

Hey see DC ... Caity Lotz as Sara Lance in Arrow.
Hey see DC … Caity Lotz as Sara Lance in Arrow. Photograph: Dean Buscher/The CW

Sara Lance
DC’s Arrow

In the early days of the vigilante Television drama, society lady Sara (Caity Lotz) was forcibly recruited into gloomy ninja clan the League of Assassins. Quick-ahead to now and she has swapped ascetic fealty for hedonistic ass-kicking, foremost time-travelling super-team the Legends of Tomorrow.

Naruto Uzumaki

Manga artist Masashi Kishimoto’s magical coming-of-age tale about an orphaned ninja with the malevolent spirit of a nine-tailed demon fox inside him began as a sprawling comic sequence in 1999 before remaining adapted into hundreds of anime Television episodes. The plucky teen’s characteristically headlong “Naruto run” has also grow to be a resilient inspiration for memes.

Nicholas Linnear
The Ninja

Linnear is the 50 percent British, half Asian, thoroughly deadly protagonist of the doorstop-sized novel by Eric Van Lustbader to start with revealed in 1980. Saturated with obscure mysticism and showcasing as quite a few sexual intercourse scenes as martial arts duels, Linnear’s lurid misadventures – which ongoing in numerous bestselling sequels – aided stoke the decade’s ninja fever.

Cold-blooded warriors ... the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Cold-blooded warriors … the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Photograph: Everett Selection Inc/Alamy

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Movies, comics, online games and Television

The word “ninja” was thought of so alarming it was changed with “hero” when the Turtles cartoon debuted on Children’s BBC a few a long time ago. Based on the amazingly gritty collection of comics produced by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, the pizza-guzzling reptilian warrior dudes have confirmed remarkably hardy, surviving numerous reboots in Television and movie.

Lloyd Garmadon
Lego Ninjago

Throughout myriad design sets, a extensive-working cartoon (Ninjago: Rise of the Snakes, which started in 2011) and a 2017 film, the Lego Ninjago franchise sees six color-coded champions shield their island realm employing the artwork of “spinjitsu”. Pressured green teen Lloyd has the extra challenge that their arch-enemy Lord Garmadon is his estranged dad.