General Zod in 2008

General Zod and Superman Actor

Zod in Other Media

Zod will also be featured as Superman's primary nemesis in the 2013 film, "Man of Steel." He will be played by actor Michael Shannon.

Zod was featured in the first and second Superman movies. He was portrayed by Terence Stamp and his full name is General Dru Zod.


General Zod in 2008

In the beginning of Superman: The Movie, Zod is introduced as one of three criminals on trial. Zod was originally a member of the Krypton military, who was entrusted with the defense of Krypton by the governing council. With co-conspirators Non and Ursa, Zod was planning to overthrow the Kryptonian government and replace it with his own. The three were captured, and the council unanimously agreed to cast Zod, Ursa, and Non into the Phantom Zone. Their Phantom Zone portal is launched into space shortly before Krypton's destruction. This serves only to set up the premise of the sequel, as nothing further of the three is seen in Superman.

Stamp portrayed Zod as a pathologically arrogant aristocrat, almost bored with his incredible power. It is almost certainly his portrayal that has led to Zod becoming one of Superman's best-known villains. Zod's line from the movie, "Come, Son of Jor-El! Kneel before Zod!", has become part of pop culture.

In Superman II, the detonation of a nuclear bomb that Superman sends into space destroys the Phantom Zone portal that trapped Zod and his cohorts. They arrive on Earth and, after discovering that their Kryptonian heritage gives them each the same powers as Superman under Earth's yellow sun, subdue the U.S. Army and the President of the United States. This occurs shortly after Superman has stripped himself of his powers to be with Lois as an ordinary human. Superman must regain his powers to fight them, and in a final showdown at his Fortress of Solitude, strips Zod, Non and Ursa of their powers. All three are apparently killed as they fall into the seemingly bottomless crevasses. A scene deleted from the movie (but shown in some TV versions) shows the trio alive and in custody, implying that they lost their powers permanently and were captured.


Zod was featured in the Ruby-Spears animated Superman series.

Zod was not featured in Superman: The Animated Series, although a similar Phantom Zone villain named Jax-Ur did, along with a new character called Mala, seemingly based on Faora/Ursa. In the accompanying Superman Adventures comic book, Zod was portrayed as an Argonian (like the animated Supergirl), who co-opted Jax-Ur and Mara as his lieutenants (essentially giving Jax-Ur the Non/Quex-Ul role). This character looks physically like the Terence Stamp version from Superman: The Movie and Superman II.

A Phantom Zone villain named Zy-Kree who resembles Zod appears in the Super Friends animated series.

Smallville Zod

A pre-General Zod was portrayed by actor Callum Blue through the ninth season of Smallville.

In Smallville, the voice of Jor-El is played by Terence Stamp. This, combined with the apparent difference in character from other versions of Jor-El, led to some fan-speculation that this was really Zod. Series creators Miles Millar and Alfred Gough denied this rumour, and it was later revealed that Jor-El's characterization was misinterpreted. Recent portrayals of the character are somewhat closer to his normal characterization. In the series' fifth season, Zod has been featured as an off-screen presence. The episode "Arrival" featured two Kryptonians, disciples of Zod, on Earth searching for Clark. In the episode "Solitude", the Kryptonian artificial intelligence Brainiac masquerading as "Professor Milton Fine" convinces Clark to take him to the Fortress of Solitude, where he attempts to free Zod from the Phantom Zone. Fine temporarily opens a vortex in which the image of a figure similar to Terence Stamp's Zod can be glimpsed. "Solitude" also insinuated that Zod was a fascistic leader on Krypton that ruled with an iron fist. He appearantly considered Jor-El as his primary nemesis and is thought to be the reason for Krypton's explosion.

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