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NOTE: This article is about the incarnation of Sub-Zero from the 2021 movie. The mainstream version can be found here: Sub-Zero.
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Bi-Han, also known as Sub-Zero, is the central antagonist of the 2021 live-action film Mortal Kombat.
He is a member of the Lin Kuei clan and the eternal rival of Hanzo Hasashi, as well as the right-hand man of the sorcerer Shang Tsung. Having pledged his allegiance to Outworld, he is sent to kill all of Earthrealm's champions before the Mortal Kombat tournament, which included Hasashi's descendant, Cole Young.
Fitting to his alias, Bi-Han is a cold-hearted assassin devoted to Shang Tsung's loyalty. As such, he carries out his tasks without hesitation. He is a sadistic individual who initially appears to be affable towards Hanzo's family before murdering them in cold blood. He appears to be very remorseless of his actions, having no care of endangering and harming innocent bystanders, despite not being his targets. When facing against his specific targets, he enjoys making them suffer through a slow, painful death through torturing them with his powers before finishing them off.
Bi-Han in an unknown period of time became a member of the Lin Kuei clan and a servant of Shang Tsung. One day, Shang Tsung realized that an ancient prophecy might come true to unite a generation of contestants to defend the Earth Realm from the Outworld. He ordered Bi-Han to murder the entire Shirai Ryu clan to prevent the prophecy from coming true, including giving the Outworld a chance to take over the Earth Realm.
Bi-Han traveled to the place where the clan lived and murdered one of the clan members. Then he entered Hanzo Hahashi's hut where he found his wife and son. Bi-Han froze them both, killing them. Hanzo found their frozen bodies and was distraught at their death. The rest of the Lin Kuei then came to kill him, but Hanzo took them all down effortlessly. Then he went to the forest where Bi-Han was sitting, waiting for him.
Getting up, he said that on that day the Hahashi family would disappear from the earth. Hanzo and Bi-Han started fighting each other, wounding them both. Finally, Bi-Han managed to stab him with a kunai, killing him. But without Bi-Han's knowledge, Hanzo's wife hid her daughter before her death, who was later found by Lord Raiden, and who would later become the ancestor of the main character of the film, Cole Young.
Hunting down Champions
Rematch with Hasashi and death
Powers and Abilities
Cryokinesis: Sub-Zero's powers are elementally ice-based as he controls over the element of ice. He is easily able to deep freeze opponents, to the point of them becoming brittle enough to shatter into pieces. With a single touch, he was even able to flash-freeze opponents and had the ability to freeze the entire air itself by concentrating all of his ice power into one destructive blast.
Weapon Creation: By shaping ice into various forms, Sub-Zero can create several weapons made of ice such as swords.
Master Martial Artist: Sub-Zero is known to be a master hand-to-hand combatant and martial artist.
Master Swordsman: Sub-Zero is a highly skilled swordsman as he is capable of using ice swords in combat.
Unlike his game counterpart, who becomes sadistically cruel and evil after being resurrected as Noob Saibot, Bi-Han appears to be evil from the very beginning during his time as Sub-Zero. Instead of being framed for the massacre of the Shirai Ryu, he appears to be the actual one responsible for the event.
Also, in contrast to the games, Sub-Zero appears to be the most powerful of Shang Tsung's champions, being able to take on any battle on his own and coming out victorious. The only opponent that was able to match with him was Scorpion and even then, Cole Young assisted him to defeat Sub-Zero together.
According to Joe Taslim, Bi-Han is usually against killing children, but because he strictly follows the orders given to him from his superiors, he is willing to carry such acts, even if it goes against his morals. This is why he tells Shang Tsung he goes by his alias now as a means to distance himself from Bi-Han.
This would also explain why he acted friendly towards Hanzo's eldest child before murdering him with his mother as by this point, he has long abandoned his former self and embraced his murderous role as Sub-Zero.