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Take my hand. Swear eternal loyalty...to Zod.
~ Zod's famous final words.

Zod is a minor antagonist in Superman, and the main antagonist in Superman II. He is one of Superman's arch-enemies and was made famous in the live-action movie Superman II where his speech alone entered icon status. He is a power-hungry Kryptonian criminal who has powers comparable to Superman himself but uses them in a malicious manner.

He was portrayed by Terence Stamp, who also played William Harcourt in Alien Nation, Mankar Camoran in Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Ramsley in The Haunted Mansion and Jor-El in Smalville.

Biography

At the beginning of the movie Superman, Zod and his associates, Ursa and Non, were imprisoned in the Phantom Zone for their crimes of treason and sent into space - which, ironically, made them the only Kryptonians besides Superman to survive the planet's destruction. In Superman II, the explosion of a hydrogen bomb launched into space by Superman hits the Phantom Zone by chance, destroying it and releasing Zod, Ursa, and Non, who went to Earth. They discovered that they had the exact same powers as Superman, and naturally used them for evil, terrorizing the cities and even killing a few innocents.

Zod took over the president's office, but the president told him that Superman would never kneel before him. Lex Luthor joined forces with them, offering to take them to Superman in exchange for absolute rule over Australia. Superman came to stop them from terrorizing the city. Their attacks were able to affect each other, but in the end, Superman was outnumbered and lost, with Zod threatening to kill innocent people, and Superman flew back to the his Fortress of Solitude. Luthor then led Zod and his gang to the fortress.

Superman tricked Zod and his gang with multiple holograms, but when he had him in a headlock, Ursa threatened to tear Lois limb from limb unless Superman released him. Luthor seemingly joined forces with Superman, who then told him to get Zod and his gang into the molecular chamber that would take away the powers of any Kryptonian. Luthor then told Zod about this, and Zod, threatening to kill innocent people otherwise, forced Superman to enter, with Luthor activating the device.

However, Superman, knowing Luthor was going to double cross him, switched the device so that its rays would affect those outside it and not inside; therefore Superman was safe while Zod, Ursa, and Non were stripped of all power. Thinking he has won, Zod made Superman kneel before him and told him to take his hand and swear eternal loyalty. Superman crushed Zod's hand, picked him up, and threw him into the slanted walls of the fortress, where he slid into the mist to the ground level. It's not known what happened to him after this due to a jump cut in the US theatrical cut, but extended cut for television the Krpytonians are shown being arrested with Luthor by the U.S. Arctic Patrol.

Critical Reception

Zod was critically acclaimed by both Superman fans and film critics, who agree that Superman II was an improvement over the predecessor. As for Stamp, his performance provided a most welcome boost to his recently struggling career and he has worked regularly ever since.

Trivia

  • Christopher Lee had to turn down the role of General Zod. He had just moved to Hollywood as a tax exile, and did not want to have to return to England.
  • Zod only has around three minutes of screentime in Superman.
  • In a cut of the film edited for television, Zod, Ursa, and Non survived and were taken into custody by law enforcement along with Lex Luthor.
  • In the Richard Donner cut of Superman II, Superman turns back time, undoing the damage that Zod and his compatriots did to Earth, along with sealing the three Kryptonian criminals back into the Phantom Zone.

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Theatrical Movies
Superman: Lex Luthor | Otis | Eve Teschmacher | General Zod | Non | Ursa
Superman II: General Zod | Non | Ursa | Lex Luthor | Otis | Eve Teschmacher | Rocky
Superman III: Ross Webster | Corrupted Superman | Vera Webster | Lorelei Ambrosia
Superman IV: The Quest for Peace: Lex Luthor | Nuclear Man
Superman Returns: Lex Luthor
Man of Steel: Sword of Rao (Dru-Zod, Faora-Ul, Nam-Ek, Jax-Ur, Tor-An, Car-Vex, Nadira, & Dev-Em II)
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice: Lex Luthor | Doomsday | Anatoli Knyazev | Mercy Graves | Cesar Santos | Amajagh | Joe Chill | Zod | Steppenwolf

Direct-to-video Movies
Superman: Brainiac Attacks: Brainiac | Lex Luthor | Mercy Graves | Mister Mxyzptlk
Superman: Doomsday: Lex Luthor | Superman Clone | Doomsday | Toyman | Mercy Graves
Superman/Batman: Public Enemies: Lex Luthor | Major Force | Metallo | Amanda Waller | Toyman | Solomon Grundy | Gorilla Grodd | Killer Frost | Lady Shiva | Giganta | Mongul | Captain Cold
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse: Darkseid | Female Furies (Granny Goodness, Gilotina, Mad Harriet, Lashina & Stompa) | Doomsday
All-Star Superman: Lex Luthor | Solaris | Parasite | Bar-El & Lilo-El
Superman vs. The Elite: The Elite (Manchester Black, Coldcast, Menagerie & Hat) | Atomic Skull
Superman: Unbound: Brainiac
The Death Of Superman: Doomsday | Lex Luthor | Intergang (Bruno Mannheim) | Mercy Graves | Cyborg Superman
Reign Of The Supermen: Cyborg Superman | Darkseid | Parademons | Lex Luthor | Mercy Graves
Superman: Red Son: Superman | Brainiac | Lex Luthor | Batman | Superior Man
Superman: Man of Tomorrow: Parasite | Lobo | Lex Luthor

Television
Superman: The Animated Series: Lex Luthor | Brainiac | Darkseid | Mercy Graves | Mister Mxyzptlk | Prometheon | Bizarro | Jax-Ur | Metallo | Kalibak | Desaad | Steppenwolf | Female Furies (Granny Goodness, Stompa, Mad Harriet, & Lashina) | Livewire | Parademons | Intergang (Bruno Mannheim & Spider Spinelli) | Kanto | Lobo | Joker | Harley Quinn | Volcana | Toyman | Parasite | Earl Garver | Maxima | Weather Wizard | Sinestro | Karkull | Titano | Penguin | Riddler | Bane | Mad Hatter | Preserver | Roxy Rocket | Society of Shadows (Ra's al Ghul, Talia al Ghul, & Ubu) | Unity | Reverend Amos Howell | Luminus | Superman (Brave New Metropolis) | Lex Luthor (Brave New Metropolis) | Corey Mills | Dr. Vale | De'Cine | Kurt Bowman | General Hardcastle | Joey | Kurt
Superman & Lois: Tal-Rho | Leslie Larr | John Henry Irons | Zeta-Rho | Reno Rosetti | David Fuglestad | Intergang (Thaddeus Killgrave) | Atom-Man | Zod

Video Games
Superman Arcade: Emperor Zaas
Injustice: Superman | Brainiac | Doomsday | Aquaman | Black Adam | Sinestro | Lex Luthor | Joker | Darkseid

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Comics
Abraham Langstrom | Alfred Stryker | Alice | Amanda Waller | Amygdala | Anarky | An Innocent Guy | Arkham Knight | Arnold John Flass | Azrael | Bane | Barbatos | The Batman Who Laughs | Black Glove | Black Mask | Blockbuster I | Blockbuster II | Brain | Broker | Brother EYE | Calculator | Calendar Man | Castle Bat | Captain Fear | Carmine Falcone | Catman | Catwoman | Cheshire | Circus of Strange | Clayface | Claything | Clock King | Clownface | Club of Villains | Cluemaster | Composite Superman | Condiment King | Copperhead | Cornelius Stirk | Court of Owls | Crazy Quilt | Crime Doctor | Curtis Base | Dark Archer | David Cain | Dark Knights | Deacon Blackfire | Deadshot | Dealer | Deathstroke | The Dawnbreaker | The Devastator | Dr. Crane | Doctor Death | Doctor Double X | Doctor Phosphorus | Doctor Randolph Porter | Dr. Silversmith | The Drowned | Electrocutioner | Emperor Penguin | Enigma | Ernie Chubb | Faceless | Firebug | Firefly | Flamingo | Floronic Man | Gearhead | General Ulysses Armstrong | Gilda Dent | Gorilla Boss | Gotham City Police Department | Gillian B. Loeb | Great White Shark | The Grim Knight | Harley Quinn | Holiday | Holly Robinson | Humpty Dumpty | Hugo Strange | Hush | Jack the Ripper | James Gordon, Jr. | Jason Todd | Joe Chill | Joker | Judge of Owls | Joker's Daughter | Key | KGBeast | King of Cats | King Snake | King Tut | Killer Croc | Killer Moth | Kite Man | Lady Shiva | League of Assassins | Leviathan | Lex Luthor | Lock-Up | Mad Hatter | Mad Monk | Magpie | Malochia | Man-Bat | Mary Keeny | Maxie Zeus | Maxwell Lord | The Merciless | Merrymaker | Micheal Atkins | Monk | Mr. Freeze | Mrs. Freeze | Mayor Oswald Cobblepot | Mr. Toad | Mr. Whisper | Mutants | Nightslayer | Nocturna | Omega | Onomatopoeia | Orca | Outsider | Owlman | Phantasm | Penguin | Penny Plunderer | Phosphorus Rex | Planet Master | Poison Ivy | Polka Dot Man | Professor Arnold Hugo | Professor Pyg | Prometheus | Punchline | Ra's al Ghul | Ragdoll | Ratcatcher | Reaper | Red Death | Reverse-Flash | Riddler | Robin King | Roland Daggett | Roxy Rocket | Royal Flush Gang | Rupert Thorne | Saint Batman | Sal Maroni | Scarecrow | Sensei | Sewer King | Signalman | Simon Hurt | Sinestro | Snowman | Solomon Grundy | Spellbinder | Squid | Steeljacket | Suicide Squad | Talia al Ghul | Tally Man | Ten Eyed Man | Terrible Trio | Thomas Wayne | Tiger Shark | Timecode | Tony Zucco | Tweedledum and Tweedledee | Two-Face | Ubu | Vandal Savage | Ventriloquist | Ventriloquist II | Ventriloquist III | Vertigo | Victor Zsasz | Whisper A'Daire | Wrath | The Wonderland Gang | Zebra-Man

Theatrical Movies
Batman (1966): Joker | Catwoman | Penguin | Riddler
Batman (1989): Joker | Joker Goons (Bob Hawkins) | Alicia Hunt | Carl Grissom | Max Eckhardt | Vinnie Ricorso | Joe Chill
Batman Returns: Penguin | Red Triangle Circus Gang (Organ Grinder, Poodle Lady, Tattooed Strongman, Stungun Clown, Thin Clown, Fat Clown, Sword Swallower & Knifethrower Dame) | Max Shreck | Catwoman | Charles "Chip" Shreck
Batman: Mask of the Phantasm: Joker | Phantasm | Salvatore Valestra | Arthur Reeves | Chuckie Sol | Buzz Bronski
Batman Forever: Riddler | Two-Face | Sugar | Spice | NygmaTech (Frogmen) | Neon Gang (Neon Gang Leader) | Salvatore Maroni
Batman & Robin: Poison Ivy | Mr. Freeze | Bane | Snowy Cones Thugs | Golums | Jason Woodrue
Batman Begins: Ra's al Ghul | League of Shadows (Ra's Decoy) | Scarecrow | Carmine Falcone | Victor Zsasz | Joe Chill
The Dark Knight: Joker | Joker's Thugs (Thomas Schiff, Chuckles, Kilson, Happy, Dopey, Grumpy & Bus Driver) | Two-Face | Sal Maroni | The Chechen | Gambol | Lau | Bank Manager | Michael Wuertz | Burmese Bandit
The Dark Knight Rises: League of Shadows (Bane, Talia al Ghul & Barsad) | Catwoman | John Daggett
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice: Lex Luthor | Doomsday | Anatoli Knyazev | Mercy Graves | Cesar Santos | Amajagh | Joe Chill | Superman | Zod | Joker | Steppenwolf
Suicide Squad: Eyes of the Adversary (Enchantress & Incubus) | Suicide Squad (Deadshot, Harley Quinn, Captain Boomerang, El Diablo, Killer Croc, Slipknot & Amanda Waller) | Joker's Gang (Joker, Jonny Frost, Panda Man & Monster T) | Griggs
The Lego Batman Movie: Joker | Harley Quinn | Phantom Zone Criminals (Zod, Sauron, Kraken, Lord Voldemort, Jaws & Gremlins) | Catwoman | Poison Ivy | Two-Face | Bane | Riddler
Joker: Clowns (Joker, Clown & Ambulance Clown) | Penny Fleck | Randall | Wall Street Three | Penny Fleck's Boyfriend

Direct-to-video Movies
Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero: Mr. Freeze | Dr. Gregory Belson
Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker: Joker | The Jokerz (Chucko, Dee-Dee, Ghoul, Bonk, & Woof) | Harley Quinn
Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman: Penguin | Bane | Rupert Thorne | Carlton Duquesne
The Batman vs. Dracula: Dracula | Penguin | Joker
Superman/Batman: Public Enemies: Lex Luthor | Major Force | Metallo | Amanda Waller | Toyman | Solomon Grundy | Gorilla Grodd | Killer Frost | Lady Shiva | Giganta | Mongul | Captain Cold
Batman: Under the Red Hood: Jason Todd | Joker | Black Mask | Ra's al Ghul | Riddler
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse: Darkseid | Female Furies (Granny Goodness, Gilotina, Mad Harriet, Lashina & Stompa) | Doomsday
Batman: Year One: Batman | Gotham City Police Department (Commissioner Loeb, Arnold John Flass, & Howard Branden) | Falcone Crime Family (Carmine Falcone & Johnny Viti) | Catwoman | Joker
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns: Batman | Joker | Mutant Leader | Ellen Yindel | Harvey Dent | Selina Kyle
Son of Batman: Deathstroke | League of Assassins (Ra's al Ghul & Talia al Ghul) | Ubu | Killer Croc | Man-Bats
Batman: Assault on Arkham: Suicide Squad (Amanda Waller, Deadshot, Harley Quinn, Captain Boomerang, Killer Frost, King Shark, Black Spider, KGBeast) | Joker | Riddler | Penguin | Scarecrow | Victor Zsasz | Bane | Two-Face | Poison Ivy
Batman vs. Robin: Court of Owls (Samantha Vanaver, Talon, Owls Lieutenant, & Talon Warriors) | Dollmaker
Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts: Animalitia (Penguin, Killer Croc, Man-Bat, Cheetah & Silverback)
Batman Unlimited: Monster Mayhem: Joker | Scarecrow | Clayface | Silver Banshee | Solomon Grundy
Batman: Bad Blood: League of Assassins (Talia al Ghul, The Heretic, Onyx, Firefly, Tusk, Mad Hatter, Electrocutioner, Hellhound, Calculator, & Killer Moth) | Black Mask
Batman: The Killing Joke: Joker | Vinnie & Joe | Paris Franz
Batman Unlimited: Mechs vs. Mutants: Penguin | Mr. Freeze | Cheetah | Hush | Mad Hatter | Two-Face | Bane | Chemo | Killer Croc | Clayface | Joker | Dr. Kirk Langstrom
Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders: Joker | Penguin | Riddler | Catwoman | Archer | Black Widow | Bookworm | Clock King | Egghead | False Face | King Tut | Louie the Lilac | Mad Hatter | Minstrel | Mr. Freeze | Sandman | Shame | Siren
Batman and Harley Quinn: Harley Quinn | Poison Ivy | Floronic Man
Batman vs. Two-Face: Two-Face | Hugo Strange | Catwoman | King Tut | Bookworm | Joker | Penguin | Riddler | Clock King | Egghead | Mr. Freeze | Shame | Harley Quinn
Scooby-Doo! & Batman: The Brave and the Bold: Riddler | Clayface | Joker | Mr. Freeze | Catwoman | Penguin | Harley Quinn | Poison Ivy
Batman: Gotham by Gaslight: Jack the Ripper | Barbara-Eileen Gordon | Selina Kyle | Harvey Dent | Hugo Strange
Suicide Squad: Hell To Pay: Professor Zoom | Suicide Squad (Amanda Waller, Deadshot, Harley Quinn, Captain Boomerang, Bronze Tiger, Copperhead, Punch, Jewelee, & Count Vertigo) | Killer Frost | Blockbuster | Silver Banshee | Vandal Savage | Scandal Savage | Professor Pyg | Tobias Whale | League of Assassins (Deathstroke) | Two-Face
Batman Ninja: Joker | Harley Quinn | Catwoman | Gorilla Grodd | Bane | Penguin | Poison Ivy | Deathstroke | Two-Face
Batman vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Foot Clan (Shredder & Baxter Stockman) | League of Assassins (Ra's al Ghul & Ubu) | Joker | Penguin | Harley Quinn | Mr. Freeze | Scarecrow | Two-Face | Poison Ivy | Bane
Batman: Hush: Riddler/Hush | Catwoman | Poison Ivy | Bane | Joker | Harley Quinn | Clayface | Scarecrow | Lex Luthor | Lady Shiva | Two-Face | Penguin | Mr. Freeze | Thomas Elliot
Batman: Soul of the Dragon: Nāga | Kobra (Jeffery Burr, Schlangenfaust, Lady Eve, King Snake & Rip Jagger) | Ben Turner | Shiva | Richard Dragon | Jade
Batman: The Long Halloween: Holiday | Falcone Crime Family (Carmine Falcone, Milos Grapa, Alberto Falcone, Johnny Viti & Sofia Falcone) | Two-Face | Joker | Solomon Grundy | Salvatore Maroni | Poison Ivy | Penguin | Scarecrow | Mad Hatter | San Ho Hui (Mickey Chen) | Calendar Man | Catwoman

Television
Batman 60s show
Joker | Penguin | Catwoman | Riddler | Mr. Freeze | The Archer | Black Widow | Bookworm | Egghead | Clock King | Queenie Goldstein | Sandman | Dr. Cassandra Spellcraft | Cabala | Minstrel | Shame | False Face | The Siren | Undine | Chandell & Harry | King Tut | Louie the Lilac | Mad Hatter | Cornelia | Baby Jane Towser | Lydia Limpet | Zelda the Great | The Puzzler | Olga, Queen of Cossacks | Marsha, Queen of Diamonds | Lord Marmaduke Ffogg | Lady Penelope Peasoup | Ma Parker | Freddy the Fence | Lola Lasagne | Nora Clavicle | Colonel Gumm | Minerva | Killer Moth | Calamity Jan

1970s Filmation series
Joker | Catwoman | Penguin | Riddler | Clayface | Mr Freese | Sweet Tooth

Batman: The Animated Series
Joker | Two-Face | Harley Quinn | Penguin | Catwoman | Rupert Thorne | Riddler | Poison Ivy | Scarecrow | Mad Hatter | Killer Croc | Clayface | Ra's al Ghul | Mr. Freeze | Man-Bat | Ventriloquist and Scarface | Roland Daggett | Clock King | Bane | Hugo Strange | Lloyd Ventrix | Kyodai Ken | Baby Doll | Emile Dorian | Red Claw | Boss Biggis | Sewer King | Talia al Ghul | Maxie Zeus | Lock-Up | Professor Milo | Count Vertigo | Daniel Mockridge | Grant Walker | Gil Mason | Arkady Duvall | Fake Harley | Ferris Boyle | Arnold Stromwell | Tony Zucco | H.A.R.D.A.C. | Calendar Girl | Batman Clone

The Batman
Joker | Penguin | Bane | Catwoman | Mr. Freeze | Ethan Bennit | Killer Croc | Man-Bat | Firefly | Riddler | Punch & Judy | Kabuki Twins | Hugo Strange | Cluemaster | Ragdoll | Temblor | Poison Ivy | Tony Zucco | Count Vertigo | Harley Quinn | Maxie Zeus | Clayface | Gearhead | Francis Grey | Killer Moth | D.A.V.E. | Dracula | Rumor | Toyman | Mirror Master | Lex Luthor | Black Mask | Sinestro | Joker 2.0 | Prank | Killgore Steed | Team Penguin | Julie | Spellbinder | Blaze | The Joining | Cosmo Krank | Marty Slacker | Scorn

Batman: The Brave and The Bold
Joker | Music Meister | Catwoman | Penguin | Mr. Freeze | Clayface | Riddler | Poison Ivy | Lex Luthor | Harley Quinn | Morgaine Le Fey | Sweet Tooth | Queenie Goldstein | Bane | Kite Man | Black Manta | Gentleman Ghost

Beware the Batman
Anarky | Ra's al Ghul | Deathstroke | Two-Face | Killer Croc | Simon Stagg | Professor Pyg | Mr. Toad | Man-Bat | Cypher | Magpie | Lady Shiva | Tobias Whale | Phosphorus Rex | Lunkhead | Humpty Dumpty | Silver Monkey | Key | Bethany Ravencroft

Harley Quinn
Harley Quinn | Poison Ivy | Joker | Scarecrow | Queen of Fables | Darkseid | Parademons | Penguin | Mr. Freeze | Bane | Lex Luthor | Killer Croc | Man-Bat | Riddler | Kite Man | Doctor Psycho | Clayface | King Shark | Sy Borgman | Doctor Trap | Frank the Plant | Two-Face | Catwoman | Nick Quinzel | Sharon Quinzel

Video Games
Injustice
Superman | Joker | Wonder Woman | Yellow Lantern | The Flash | Aquaman | Nightwing | Cyborg | Raven | Solomon Grundy | Catwoman | Bane | Black Adam | Deadshot | Poison Ivy | Scarecrow | Deathstroke

           The Lego Movie logo.png Villains

The LEGO Movie
Lord Business | Super Secret Police (Bad Cop & Sheriff Not-A-Robot) | Duplo Aliens

The LEGO Movie 4D: A New Adventure
Risky Business | Lord Business

The LEGO Batman Movie
Joker | Harley Quinn | Phantom Zone Criminals (Zod, Sauron, Kraken, Lord Voldemort, Jaws & Gremlins) | Catwoman | Poison Ivy | Two-Face | Bane | Riddler

The LEGO Ninjago Movie
Lord Garmadon

Unikitty!
Master Frown | Score Creeper | Eagleator

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part
Rex Dangervest | Velociraptors | Duplo Aliens | Lord Business | Bad Cop