Karl Zod (II)

  1. Biographical Details
  2. Description
  3. History
  4. Psychological Profile
  5. Skills and Abilities

Biographical Details

Full Name
Originally Karl Zod, he changed his first name to Carl when he moved to America (it is not clear why) and tended to use them interchangeably from that point on.
19 March 1917; Heidelberg, Austria.
18 April 1997, Los Angeles.
Frida Zod, wife; Carla Zod, daughter.
Theoretical physicist and teacher.
Friend of Strikeforce.


Height 5'6" (168cm); Weight 114lbs (52kg); grey hair (formerly dark brown; brown eyes; old and frail-looking; wears glasses.


Karl Zod was born into an aristocratic Austrian family. His father a decorated naval captain and his mother died when he was young. He showed great interest in science from a young age and was sent to the best schools and universities, where he was a star pupil. While still at university, he met a town girl, Frida, and knowing that his tradition-bound father would disapprove of the match, he married her in secret. They were both only 19 years old.

When Nazi Germany annexed Austria, Karl could not in good conscience support the regime, and when he learned that his father had shot himself rather than accept a German naval commission, he resolved to flee Europe completely. He and Frida moved to America in 1937, with enough of his inherited wealth intact that they could live very comfortably in their adopted country.

Karl finished his physics degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and was engaged in post-graduate research when America was dragged into World War 2 and the government recruited him into the Manhattan Project, where he was responsible for some of the complex mathematics that led to the development of the first atomic bomb. A natural pacifist, Karl rarely referred to this work in later life.

After the war the Zods moved to Santa Barbara, California, where Karl took a teaching and research position at UCSB.

Carla, their only child, was born late in their lives, in 1960 when Karl and Frida were both 43. Frida had a difficult pregnancy and never fully recovered, dying while Carla was still a baby. Carla was raised by her father and a succession of nannies. Every bit the intellectual equal of her father, she attained her PhD in physics from MIT but then returned to Santa Barbara to live with her father, who was becoming frail and ill. In 1985, Karl retired from academic life and they moved to San Franciso where they lived in a large and luxurious penthouse apartment.

In 1987, Karl was kidnapped by the Anarchists, who, knowing of his involvement in the Manhattan Project, had intended to force him to make weapons for them. As a pure theoretician, he could not do what was required, and they held him prisoner for several weeks until he was rescued by Strikeforce.

Recovering from his ordeal, he lived long enough to see his daughter marry Franklin Marks, and passed away peacefully a few years later.

Psychological Profile

Karl Zod was sharply intelligent, though when he intereacted with people his mannerisms appeared vague and his thoughts disjoined.

Skills and Abilities

Karl Zod was one of the greatest theoretical physicists of the 20th century, producing an array of papers on multiple topics. His pet interest was time travel, and published a rigorous (and surprisingly accurate, as would be later proven) mathematical theory on the phenomenon. In academic circles, this aspect of his work was rarely taken seriously.