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|“||You suffer with me.||„|
|~ Menendez's most famous quote.|
|“||Opulence is sinful and we all pay for it.||„|
|~ Raul Menendez's catchphrase.|
Raul Menendez, also known as Odysseus, is the overall main antagonist of the Call of Duty franchise's Black Ops sub-series.
He serves as the main antagonist of the 2012 video game Call of Duty: Black Ops II, a posthumous antagonist in the 2015 sequel Call of Duty: Black Ops III, the posthumous overarching antagonist of the 2018 sequel Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 and the unseen overarching antagonist of the 2020 prequel Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. He also appears as one of the main antagonists of the Call of Duty: Mobile comics.
He was an extremely charismatic and influential Nicaraguan political activist, founder and leader of Cordis Die and an old nemesis of Alex Mason and Frank Woods. He intends on destroying America through a worldwide uprising by crippling the U.S. military, in his campaign to avenge the death of his sister Josefina and the many people that Americans have killed throughout history. He is the archenemy of David Mason and Frank Woods. He's also the son of Jose Luiz Menendez, a notorious and powerful Nicaraguan drug kingpin, and founder of the Menendez Cartel, the most feared drug cartel in Central America.
After growing up witnessing the brutality and oppression of U.S. capitalism, Menendez became a vindictive and murderous madman who sought to bring down the Western Civilization, enough so that he would align himself with various dictators and communists to bestow conflict. Besides all of his anger, Menendez was not without his soft side and showed genuine friendship to many of his subordinates, including Farid and DeFalco. Deep down, Menendez wanted to make the world a better place, even if it means crippling governments, their military and wreak mass terror in a means to end oppression. To demonstrate how he doesn't tolerate betrayal or failure, Menendez can be extremely ruthless, cold and brutal as shown when he executed Farid (depending on the player's choices) for betraying him. He was also somewhat of a megalomaniac, believing that his way was the only way to live in the world to not experience its harsh reality, which includes poverty and witnessing war first-hand.
Although he was delusional, Menendez was unquestionably intelligent and was able to constantly trick the American intelligence to move forward with his plans for global anarchy. His intelligence was also crossed with his charisma, which he used to influence billions of people to cause thanks to his own experience of loss, grief, poverty, suffering and anger towards those who have not had to struggle or fight for anything in their life. In each of his videos, he presented himself as a messiah-like figure, speaking in a very calm and soft manner. As he got older, he even began speaking philosophically, where he would constantly be quoting various poems to express if ideology and views of life. It is through these poems that helped him plan his revenge against the world and its superpowers.
Despite his bad and questionable characteristics, Menendez loved his sister Josefina above everything else. As a young child during the warehouse fire, he refused to leave her and risked his own life to save her. He continued to protect and care for her growing up, even risking his own safety and freedom to save her after his Nicaraguan compound was under attack by U.S. forces. After Josefina was accidentally killed by Woods, who pathologically wanted to kill him for torturing him, Menendez would spend decades planning to avenge her death. He acted quickly a year later by tricking Woods into shooting Mason, making his son David an orphan and killing Hudson to make Woods suffer for what he did. Menendez developed a certain amount of respect towards David, refusing to kill him whenever he had the chance and often indicating that he wants him to be a part of his cause.
- Jason Hudson
- "Farid" (Determined)
- Tommy Briggs (Determined)
- Jones (Determined)
- Samuels (Determined)
- Frank Woods (Determined)
- Himself (Determined)
- Numerous PDF soldiers
- Lev Kravchenko
- Alex Mason (Determined)
- Mike Harper (Determined)
- Chloe Lynch/"Karma" (Determined)
- Tommy Briggs (Determined)
- Javier Salazar (Determined)
- Anderson (Determined)
- Numerous unnamed people
- He was voiced by Kamar de los Reyes. It can be noted that Menendez looks considerably like Kamar, but with a scar across his eye.
- Menendez's name was originally Martinez.
- Menendez in his youth bears a striking resemblance to David Mason in his youth - right down to the hairstyle, polo-styled striped shirt, and facial features.
- Menendez is interestingly-similar to the real-life leader of Al-Qaeda, Osama bin Laden; both were terrorists with vendettas against America and were responsible for mass bombings. Both were also killed as part of an American-sanctioned operation.
- Menendez appears alongside Frank Woods in the music video for the song "Carry On" by Avenged Sevenfold.
- Also, Menendez's shirt on the back shows the dates and locations of concerts, which reference the locations and dates of Future Missions.
- In "Time and Fate", Menendez plays very differently from a normal Call of Duty player character due to his rampage. He moves noticeably faster than normal, deals so much melee damage he can actually dismember enemies with his machete, can reload the starting SPAS-12 shotgun nearly instantly if he has fired more than three rounds and gets a 16-round magazine on it, and has infinite ammunition for any weapon he uses. He can also take an extremely high amount of damage (at least as much as a player-controlled Juggernaut), and his health regenerates much faster than normal.
- Menendez is multilingual, as he speaks Spanish, Russian and English.
- Menendez was ranked #1 on GameInformer's list of top 10 villains of 2012.
- Menendez has been repeatedly named as one of the best villains in Call of Duty, alongside Vladimir Makarov.
- Ironically, Cordis Die has an agenda against the rich, but Menendez is rich himself. However, Cordis Die most likely holds Menendez in a high regard because he initially grew up very poor and later became rich on his own merits as well as tolerates his wealth due to the fact he uses it to fund them.
- Menendez's favorite weapon in 2025 is the Executioner revolver; in the 1980's, his favorite weapon appears to be the SPAS-12, as he stole Noriega's in "Time and Fate" and had his own in "Suffer With Me". Due to this, it is possible he may have a fondness for shotguns.
- If Menendez survives and Chloe Lynch is killed or captive, after he kills Woods, and is at his sister's grave, his hair has grown back out, which means that a significant amount of time passed after he killed Woods.
- When Menendez is about to kill Woods (Player-determined), he appears to have his right eye back, however, it's more likely a fake one.
- If Menendez is killed in "Judgment Day", his tongue will roll out.
- In "Pyrrhic Victory", Menendez uses a SOG Knife, which is strange, since he was never a part of SOG. He most likely took it from Woods or a member of his team when they were captured.
- If Graphic Content Filter is enabled, and if the player gets the ending where Chloe lives and Menendez is captured, when he slams his head on the TV in his prison cell, Menendez's entire body, including his face, is censored.
- In "Time and Fate", it's possible to kill Menendez. The player should equip the Storm PSR (however, the player must finish the campaign first in order to use the future weapon in past mission), and when seeing Menendez at the barn, the player will need to wait for being able to use the weapons again, then look for Menendez and kill him. However, this does not change the game, and Menendez is seen in the house later in the mission.
- Despite having only one eye, Menendez's field of vision is exactly the same as any other character's when he is playable. This is likely an intentional developers' choice not to limit the player's vision of his surroundings.
- It has been confirmed in the Black Ops III timeline trailer that the "shoot Menendez" choice is the canon outcome of Black Ops II.