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Quote1 You will bow down before me, Jor-El! I swear it! No matter that it takes an eternity! You will bow down before me! Both you, and then, one day, your heirs! Quote2
-- Zod src

General Zod is most widely recognized as the primary antagonist from the 1980 film, Superman II. Played by actor Terence Stamp, Zod actually made his on-screen debut in the first Superman film. Appearing with his Kryptonian confederates Ursa and Non, they made a brief appearance in the opening scenes of the movie, where the Kryptonian Science Council sentences all three of them to banishment in the Phantom Zone. This scene foreshadowed the major plot of the sequel.

In Superman II, an explosion in space shatters the portal to the Phantom Zone setting the Kryptonians free. Note: The nature of the explosion that breaks the criminals free of the Phantom Zone varies depending upon the version of the film. In the theatrical release of Superman II, the explosion was caused when Superman heaved an explosives-laden elevator car into outer space. In the Richard Donner Cut, the explosion is caused when Superman hurls nuclear missiles (as seen in the first Superman movie) into space where they detonate harmlessly. Immediately gifted with superhuman abilities from Earth's yellow sun, they set down on the moon where they encounter an International team of astronauts. From listening to the Astronauts' broadcast, Zod mistakenly believes that the name of their home planet was Houston.

From there, Zod, Ursa and Non fly to "Planet Houston" where they learn that the son of Jor-El (the man responsible for imprisoning them) is living under the pseudonym, Superman. Hungry for new worlds to conquer, Zod quickly takes control of the United States, and sets up a base of operations at the White House. With the aid of criminal mastermind Lex Luthor, he learns of Superman's attachment to Lois Lane and the location of his Fortress of Solitude.

Superman squares off with Zod and the others in a massive brawl that nearly destroys Metropolis. Their fight eventually brings all of the combatants, as well as Lois and Lex Luthor, to the Fortress of Solitude for their final confrontation. There, Superman tricks the three Kryptonians into entering a special Red-Sun chamber that robs them of their powers. Superman finishes Zod off by throwing him against a wall adjacent to a deep catacomb. No longer with the ability to fly, General Zod falls into the fog, to his death.

Powers

  • Kryptonian Physiology: Under the effects of a "yellow" sun, Zod possesses the same potential powers as an average Kryptonian. These include:
    • Solar Energy Absorption: Under optimal conditions, this is the main source of Zod's super powers as they are contingent upon exposure to solar radiation from a yellow sun star system. His biological make up includes a number of organs which lack analogues in humans and whose functions are unknown. It is believed that between one or more of these and his bio-cellular matrix, "yellow" solar energy is stored for later use. This allows for the use of these powers to fade when yellow solar radiation is not available instead of immediate failure.
    • Heat Vision: Zod can, as a conscious act, fire beams of intense heat at a target by looking at it. He can vary the heat and area affected.
    • Super-Hearing: Zod's hearing is sensitive enough to hear any sound at any volume or pitch. With skill and concentration, he can block out ambient sounds to focus on a specific source or frequency.
    • Enhanced Vision Zod's vision processes the entire electromagnetic spectrum as well as allowing vast control over selective perception and focus.
      This umbrella ability includes the following:
      • Electromagnetic Spectrum Vision: Zod can see well into most of the electromagnetic spectrum. He can see and identify radio and television signals as well as all other broadcast or transmitted frequencies. Using this ability, he can avoid detection by radar or satellite monitoring methods. This also allows him to see the aura generated by living thing.
      • Telescopic Vision: This is the ability to see something at a great distance, without violating the laws of physics. Though limited, the exact extent of the ability is undetermined. In function, it is similar to the zoom lens on a camera.
      • X-Ray Vision: This is the ability to see through any volume of matter except lead. Zods can see things behind a solid, opaque object as if it were not there. He can focus this ability to "peel back" layers of an object, allowing hidden image or inner workings to be observed. The exact type of energy perceived - such as x-rays, cosmic rays, or some other energy invisible to normal humans - is unclear. This ability perceives an ambient energy source though, it does not involve the eye projecting a concentrated, possibly toxic, beam to be reflected back from objects.
      • Microscopic Vision: This is the ability to see extremely small objects and images down to the atomic level.
      • Infrared Vision: Zod can see with better acuity in darkness, and to a degree in total darkness.
    • Flight: Zod is able to manipulate graviton particles to defy the forces of gravity and achieve flight. This ranges from hovering to moving in any posture, in any direction.
    • Invulnerability: Due to the interaction of his dense molecular structure and supercharged bio-electric aura, Zod is nigh-invulnerable to extreme energy forces. In addition, his extends this protection against toxins and diseases.
    • Superhuman Stamina: Zod is able to maintain continuous strenuous physical action for an indefinite period of time. This based on his body converting yellow solar radiation directly to energy, but is limited by physiological and psychological needs to eat, drink, and sleep.
    • Superhuman Strength: Zod's strength is augmented by yellow solar radiation interacting with the greater than human density, resilience and biological efficiency of his musculature. His strength is more an act of conscious will on energy fields than actual physical strength. It is this act of conscious will that enables him to perform physical feats that are beyond the mere application force, such as moving a mountain top without said rock crumbling under its own mass.
    • Superhuman Speed: Zod is able to move at incredible speed by sheer force of will. This extends to his perceptions and allows for feats such as catching bullets in mid flight as well as covering vast distances in little or no time.
      This also confers:
    • Super-Breath: Zod is able to create hurricane force winds by exhaling air from his lungs. He can chill the air as it leaves his lungs to freeze targets. He can also reverse the process to pull large volumes of air or vapor into his lungs.


  • Energy Projection: In addition to these abilities, Zod also possesses the unexplained ability to generate force beams from his fingers.

Abilities

Weaknesses

  • Vulnerability to Kryptonite: All Kryptonians are vulnerable to exposure from green Kryptonite. Immediate exposure causes great discomfort, while prolonged exposure will prove fatal.
  • Zod was portrayed by Terence Stamp.
  • Appeared with Ursa and Non in Superman for the NES.
  • In the Donner Cut, when Superman turns back time to avoid the devastation of the planet, Zod and the others are re-imprisoned in the Phantom Zone.

Related


Footnotes


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Superman Villain(s)
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This character is or was primarily an enemy of Superman in any of his various incarnations, or members of the Superman Family. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Superman Villains category."