Little is known about the early life of Zod. 20 years before the destruction of Krypton, Zod was a Major in the Kryptonian Army and fought in the war against Black Zero. When Black Zero blew up the city of Kandor, Zod's wife and son were among the Kryptonians killed in the explosion. During this time, Zod was among the Kryptonian soldiers selected for a cloning experiment. Zod begged his good friend, Jor-El, to include his son's DNA in the experiment. However, Jor-El refused to grant Zod's wish, despite the fact that Jor-El owed him one.
At some point in the next 20 years, Zod remarried to a woman named Faora. The two eventually discovered that they were unable to have children, despite the advanced science of Kryptonian society. So, at some point, they began a genetic experiment, where they combined their own DNA, with the DNA taken from the most ferocious animals on Krypton. This would eventually lead to the creation of Davis Bloome and Doomsday.
The exact cause of his descent into darkness remains unknown, but a clone of Zod would later speculate that his descent could've begun with the death of his son and Jor-El's refusal. Together with his wife and his disciples, Zod launched a global war. The war waged by Zod would destroy all of Krypton and wipe out the entire Kryptonian race, apart from a few survivors. Shortly before Krypton exploded, Zod and Faora were captured. For their crimes, their physical bodies were destroyed and they were turned into phantoms, that were banished to the Phantom Zone.
Zod remained in the Phantom Zone, until he was accidently released by Clark Kent, in 2006, and possessed the body of Lex Luthor. Zod briefly banished Clark to the Phantom Zone and attempted to take over the Earth. However, with the aid of another Kryptonian, Clark managed to escape the Phantom Zone and came back to fight Zod. After a brief fight, Zod managed to overpower Clark and ordered the young man the kneel before him and join him. Clark appeared to obey Zod's orders, but when the two touched hands, Zod discovered that Clark had with him a Kryptonian crystal, that once belonged to Jor-El. The crystal expelled Zod from Lex Luthor's body and returned the phantom to the Phantom Zone.
In 2010, something unexpected happened. The Kryptonian clones of New Krypton banished Zod's clone to the Phantom Zone. When the phantom of the real Zod and the clone encountered each other, the two merged into a singular being. Zod once more had a physical body. More importantly, the clone's body had some of Clark's DNA inside of it. Which meant that Zod was able to control Phantom Zone gateway crystal (something only someone with blood from Jor-El's family could do) This allowed Zod to send Slade Wilson back to Earth, to draw the attention of Clark.
Clark went into the Phantom Zone, together with Oliver Queen. Zod's men took the two men prisoners, after which Zod forced the two to fight in his gladiator arena. However, once more Clark managed to outsmart Zod. Oliver pretended to side with Zod and fatally wounded Clark in battle. When Zod approached the injured Clark, Oliver stole the gateway crystal and gave it to Clark, which allowed Clark to heal his injuries and return both him and Oliver to Earth. However, before Clark left, he destroyed the crystal, in an attempt to trap Zod and the others in the Zone forever.
- 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.
- Longevity: Zod can live longer than regular humans, remaining at his prime as long as he was under the exposure of the "yellow" sun.
- Kryptonian Physiology: Under the effects of a "yellow" sun, Zod possesses the same potential weaknesses as an average Kryptonian. These include:
- Power Instability: As Zod draws his power from the sun, solar flares can cause his powers to fluctuate. Resulting in him becoming stronger or weaker.
- Clone Zod is not possessed by the phantom of the original Zod. Rather, they are merged into a single entity; their consciousnesses are unified. This allows Zod to have the memories of his original self, while the original Zod gets the benefit of a younger body.
- This version of the character is exclusive to the continuity of the television series Smallville and its tie-in and comic book series, Smallville and Smallville Season 11. It is an adaptation of General Zod. The original character was created by Robert Bernstein and George Papp and first appeared in Adventure Comics #283.
- Zod was portrayed by Callum Blue and, while possessing Lex Luthor, by Michael Rosenbaum.
- 7 Appearances of Zod (Smallville)
- 4 Images featuring Zod (Smallville)
- Quotations by or about Zod (Smallville)
- Character Gallery: Zod (Smallville)
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