- "How did I ever fall for this guy's scheme?"
- ―Wicket W. Warrick
The Totem Master was a thief who lived on the forest moon of Endor. He traveled from village to village in a covered wagon, looking for targets that could be robbed easily. To carry out these robberies, the Totem Master used a group of creatures that had been enslaved to his will. He exerted control over the group through a magic ring which also allowed him to transform his slaves into wooden sculptures that took on the appearance of a totem pole. The Totem Master would then attempt to give the totem pole as a gift to the inhabitants of the villages that he had targeted. After the totem pole was brought back into the community and night had fallen, the Totem Master reanimated the Totem Slaves and had them rob the villagers for him.
Around 3 ABY, the Totem Master had set his sights on Bright Tree Village, and after investigating the settlement, he was able to convince the young Ewok Wicket W. Warrick to take his totem pole by appealing to the child's vanity. Once the totem pole had been brought back to the village, the Totem Master waited for the cover of night and then released his servants, who began to ransack the village. After loading the loot onto his wagon, the Totem Master departed, but not before being confronted by two young Ewoks, Latara and Teebo. However, the Totem Master simply used his ring to enslave the Ewoks, adding them to his totem pole. The Totem Master made his way to the next village, the Strutter's, but he was pursued by Wicket and Kneesaa a Jari Kintaka, who had seen their friends taken captive and hoped to rescue them. The Totem Master was successful at giving the totem pole over to the Strutters, but when he returned at night to begin another robbery, he was attacked by the two Ewoks. The Totem Master ordered his servants, including Latara and Teebo, to capture the two troublemakers, and a chase ensued. However, in a final showdown, the Totem Master had his own ring turned against him, which caused him to be transformed into a totem pole. His magical ring slipped from his wooden fingers and was smashed on the ground, freeing his slaves.
The thief of Endor
- "There's always some fool who falls for my totem pole gift."
- ―The Totem Master
The being known as the Totem Master began his career of thievery after coming into possession of a powerful artifact, which allowed him to enslave other individuals to his will. This device, a ring that he wore on his left hand, doubled as a weapon with the ability to fire bolts of energy. Through the use of the ring, the Totem Master created a group of thieves to serve him. The three beings making up this tiny band included a brown biped, a green arthropod and a blue biped. As a mark of their enslavement to the Totem Master, their eyes glowed red, and they were forced to carry out his every order. At an unspecified point, the Totem Master and his slaves found themselves on the forest moon of Endor, where they began to steal from the locals.
In order to carry out his capers on the Endorians, the Totem Master would pose as a simple trader, riding his primitive wagon into the center of their villages and offering the citizens a simple gift—a totem pole. In order to make sure the villagers would accept his present, the Totem Master would make various claims about the object, appealing to his customer's vanity. In reality, the gift was made up of the Totem Master's three slaves, stacked one on top of the other. The Totem Master's ring had the ability to change the trio into stationary blocks of wood, making the illusion of a real totem pole flawless. Once the villagers had all gone to sleep, the Totem Master would reappear in the village and remove the spell, sending his slaves out to steal everything of value from the settlement. The spoils would be placed in the back of the Totem Master's wagon, and the group would be gone before the morning, moving on to the next target.
In Bright Tree Village
Eventually, the Totem Master and his thieves found themselves outside of Bright Tree Village. Surveying the area, the Totem Master saw several young Ewoks harvesting dangleberry juice. Believing them to be easy marks for his totem pole gift, the Totem Master began to speak with the Ewoks. After overhearing that one Ewok, Wicket W. Warrick, considered himself a powerful warrior, the Totem Master appealed to the Ewok's pride, telling Wicket that his totem pole was something that only the greatest warriors possessed to protect their villages. Despite warnings by Wicket's friend Kneesaa a Jari Kintaka, Wicket agreed to take the gift, much to the Totem Master's delight, and he departed before the Ewok could change his mind.
That night, the Totem Master sent his thieves into the village, and they began to gather all the valuables from the Ewoks' huts. However, in their hurry to collect their plunder, one of the thieves, the blue biped, accidentally awoke one of the Ewok children from his slumber. Teebo, shocked at the thieves' presence in the village, tried to stop the group from escaping, but the Totem Master used his ring to enslave Teebo as well. After adding the Ewok to the totem pole, the thieves left the village. Before their departure, Wicket briefly saw the Totem Master, but believing himself to be dreaming, decided to go back to sleep.
In Strutter Village
- "Time to wake up, my little robbers! Go, go, my little totems! Bring me everything!"
- ―The Totem Master sends out his minions to rob the Strutter Village
The Totem Master began to make his way to the next village but decided to stop briefly to appraise the things he had stolen. The Totem Master judged the majority of it to be worthless garbage, casting many of the objects into the forest. However, Wicket and his friends Kneesaa and Latara had been tailing the Totem Master after they had discovered Wicket's "dream" to have been real. Latara, after seeing her possessions described as junk, could not bear to sit idly by, and she decided to confront the Totem Master despite her friends' protests. However, Latara's confrontation of the Totem Master only resulted in the same fate that had befallen Teebo, and she was quickly added to the totem pole as well. After creating another Ewok slave, the Totem Master departed on a heading for the Strutter Village.
Using a different approach than he had in Bright Tree Village, the Totem Master drove his wagon straight into the center of town and offloaded his now much larger totem pole. Although the Strutters were initially dismissive of the Totem Master, he was once again able to appeal to his target's vanity, convincing the Strutters to accept the totem pole. Before leaving, the Totem Master took one last look at his totem pole, recognizing that it had somehow grown taller, but not recognizing that the two Ewoks who had been following him were perched on the top of the totem pole.
Later that night, as in the other villages, the Totem Master returned and released his slaves from their totem configuration, ordering them to plunder the settlement. Meanwhile, Wicket and Kneesaa, having removed themselves from the top of the totem pole, had devised a trap for the Totem Master. As he walked towards a nearby tree, the two Ewoks prepared to drop a bale of hay upon the Totem Master. Their plan succeeded, but when the Ewoks went to steal the Totem Master's ring, he was able to recover, aiming his ring at the would-be rescuers. However, Wicket and Kneesaa were able to avoid the blast from the ring, and they fled from their attacker. Furious at the two Ewoks having escaped him, the Totem Master yelled to his slaves, ordering them to capture the fleeing meddlers.
- "It seems your friends are now my friends."
- ―The Totem Master taunts Wicket and Kneesaa
As the Totem Master's slaves rushed to obey him, a chase ensued with the Ewoks fleeing frantically through the Strutter village. The Totem Master continued to fire his ring at the Ewoks, but they were too fast for him. Still attempting to catch the Ewoks, the Totem Master crashed into his green arthropod servant and crashed to the ground. However, just as it seemed that the Ewoks would escape, they ran into their two enslaved friends. Mistakenly believing that their friends were there to help them, Wicket and Kneesaa ceased their escape. Latara and Teebo, still under the Totem Master's control, dropped their loot and grabbed their friends, holding them for their master. Although the two Ewoks struggled against their friends, they were unable to escape before the Totem Master had them at his mercy.
As the Totem Master gloated his triumph over the Ewoks, Wicket happened to spy a mirror that Teebo had dropped when capturing his friend. Anticipating the Totem Master's next move, Wicket was able to snatch up the mirror just as the Totem Master used his ring on the Ewoks. The blast from the Totem Master's ring reflected off of the mirror and hit the Totem Master directly. The energy from the ring surrounded the Totem Master, causing him to scream in agony. With his eyes wide in shock, the Totem Master's body began to transform into a solid block of wood, just as he had once done to his slaves.
- "The Totem Master won't be messing with us again, and I won't be taking anything from strange creatures again."
- ―Wicket learns his lesson following the encounter with the Totem Master
After the Totem Master's defeat, his ring slid off his wooden fingers and smashed to pieces on the ground. The destruction of the artifact removed the control that the Totem Master had placed over his slaves. As a signal of their freedom from their overlord, the slaves' red eyes reverted to their normal demeanor. With the Totem Master transformed into wood, the three original servants celebrated their liberation and then disappeared into the nearby forest. The four Ewok friends reunited, and Latara and Teebo thanked their friends for rescuing them. With the rescue complete, the Ewoks took the Totem Master's wagon and went back to Bright Tree Village, returning all the stolen property to their fellow Ewoks. The Totem Master's wooden body remained in the Strutter village upon their departure. With his magic ring destroyed, it seemed unlikely that the Totem Master could be released from his wooden form.
Personality and traits
- "The evil spell is broken! We're free!"
- ―The Totem slaves celebrate their freedom
The Totem Master was an evil and greedy individual, who cared solely for possessions, and had no qualms about using and enslaving other sentient peoples to fulfill his goals. With his ring, the Totem Master used his powers to force others to do his bidding. The Totem Master also possessed charisma, as he was able to convince several villages that his totem pole was something that would fill their desires. He was able to do this without arousing their suspicions, even though he was essentially giving them the totem pole for nothing in return. The Totem Master had a short temper; he lashed out several times at the Ewoks when they confronted him. When confronted by Latara, and then later by Wicket and Kneesaa, the Totem Master quickly became angered, raising his voice and firing blasts from his ring.
Behind the scenes
The Totem Master was created by Bob Carrau for use in the sixth episode of the second season of Ewoks, "The Totem Master." The nature of the Totem Master's ring is not explained in the episode, but it may be possible that the ring was a Force-sensitive object that possessed transforming abilities, much the same as Charal's magic ring. The Totem Master is present as a character to teach children the value of not taking gifts from strangers, as Wicket unwisely takes a present from the namesake of the episode. By the end of the episode, Wicket learns how unwise it was to trust a complete stranger.