I've not yet tasted enough! I have not had my fill!!!
– Zodd[3]
Nosferatu Zodd, or "Zodd the Immortal", is a legendary swordsman and powerful apostle said to have killed thousands of adversaries on the battlefield. After intervals of inactivity and purported death, Zodd resurfaces on the battlefield to continue his slaughter,[4] having done so unmitigated for roughly three hundred years.

He possesses an unrivaled thirst for battle – a craving, for the longest time, only sated by his long-spanning rivalry with the Skull Knight. His search for the "ultimate strong one" leads him to Griffith, who he currently serves as one of the White Falcon's most trusted warriors in the reborn Band of the Falcon.

Personality Edit

Manga E128 Somber Zodd

In spite of his apostlehood, Zodd only truly desires to battle the strong.

Zodd is a fearless apostle who has devoted his existence to combat. His urge to fight stronger opponents and relish in battle has left myriads dead in his wake. He is ferocious and merciless, even when his opponents are clearly outmatched. Above all, he longs for an adequate challenge – the "ultimate strong one".[2]

Despite his intense hunger for battle and seeming one-track mind, Zodd is an enigmatic individual.[5] Unlike most apostles, he does not eat human flesh, nor is he inherently sadistic and cruel; he takes no pleasure in torturing or killing weaklings. Indeed, Zodd has expressed great melancholy at his own strength, as he is too powerful to find adequate adversaries among men.[2] For those who survive their encounters with him, and thus prove themselves worthy opponents, Zodd has nothing but respect. He holds anyone who can harm or even defend themselves against him in great esteem, such as Guts and his rival the Skull Knight.

Story Edit

Golden Age Arc Edit

If you can be said to be a true friend of this man, then take heed... When his ambition collapses, death will pay you a visit! A death you can never escape!
– Zodd's prophecy of the approaching Eclipse[6]
Manga E2 Zodd Slaughter

Zodd, having single-handedly slaughtered roughly 50 Falcons.

For approximately three centuries, Zodd earns the title of "Nosferatu" – a monstrous, immortal "battlefield god" – disappearing for long-spanning periods of time just to resurface again and continue his slaughter. He eventually offers his services to the Tudor Empire during its century-long war with the Kingdom of Midland. Zodd first meets Guts while protecting the inner citadel of a Tudor stronghold, slaughtering almost fifty of the Band of the Falcon's Raiders that storm its halls, before the swordsman enters alone to confront him. With Guts enraged to find him among the butchered remains of his men, Zodd knocks the charging swordsman back by throwing the corpses of two Raiders at him with a swing of his sword.[4] He then advances towards Guts, complimenting his swordsmanship, before the two begin exchanging blows. After gambling his life on one swing, Guts manages to slice the top half of Zodd's blade clean off, cutting into the apostle's right shoulder in the process. Commending Guts for being the first man to injure him in 300 years, Zodd grabs his opponent's sword and assumes his true form, excited and ready to fight at full strength.[7]

Manga E5 Pincer Movement

Guts and Griffith carry out a pincer movement on Zodd.

Zodd's immense strength proves to be too much for Guts to contend with, however; disappointed, Zodd decides to finish the swordsman off. Just as he begins crushing Guts in his grip, he is hit by an arrow volley from Falcon reinforcements lead by Griffith. Only angered by their interruption, Zodd decimates the Falcon soldiers, cornering Griffith and the now wounded Guts before they can escape,[1] and insisting that they fight him. Meeting Zodd's advance, Guts and Griffith execute a pincer movement on the apostle, the former cutting deep into his torso and the latter severing his arm; Zodd retaliates by tail-whipping Griffith into a column, knocking the White Falcon unconscious. Delighted to have found two humans capable of so greatly wounding him, Zodd expresses regret in having to kill the two Falcons, before making to finish off Griffith. However, Zodd stays his hand upon seeing Griffith's dangling Crimson Beherit, shocked that one such as Griffith bears the "Egg of the King". Knowing fully well the significance of this event, Zodd punches through the keep's roof and prepares to take his leave, cryptically warning Guts of an inescapable death that will befall him when Griffith's dream is shattered before flying off.[6]

During the Battle for Doldrey, while observing Guts and Boscogn's duel from afar, Zodd throws his sword towards Guts for the swordsman to wield after his own breaks mid-battle.[8] He departs soon after Guts defeats Boscogn, knowing that the time of the Eclipse is near.[9]

A year later, Zodd encounters the Falcons for the last time as they are attacked by his fellow apostle Wyald.[10] Zodd takes offense to Wyald acting against the God Hand's will, and kills him for using a crippled Griffith as a hostage. Zodd then relays to Griffith that his lost Crimson Beherit will return to him, but neglects to answer Guts' questions regarding his previous statement, explaining that all will be revealed imminently before flying away.[11]

Manga E80 Skull Knight Engages Zodd

Zodd engaging the Skull Knight outside of the fifth Eclipse.

When Griffith invokes the fifth Eclipse, Zodd remains in the Physical World outside of the temporal junction point, having no interest in partaking in the slaughter of the Falcons alongside his fellow apostles. He awaits the arrival of the Skull Knight, who mistakenly concludes that Zodd was tasked with guarding the gate to the Eclipse.[12] Ultimately, Zodd is overpowered by the knight in battle and forced to let him pass. Not long after, he witnesses his rival emerge from the Eclipse with Guts and Casca. Shocked to see Guts still alive, Zodd accepts the Skull Knight's request to postpone their battle until a more convenient time, and allows him to escape with the surviving sacrifices and Rickert. While watching them leave, Zodd expresses his anticipation to see how a now branded Guts will survive in his darkened reality.[13]

Conviction Arc Edit

E128-FoL and Zodd-Manga

Zodd's vision of the Falcon of Light.

Two years after the fifth Eclipse, having slaughtered three hundred mercenaries, Zodd becomes bored of constantly fighting weaker opponents. While sitting atop a mound of slain mercenaries, he assesses potential worthy opponents, dissatisfied with the opposition provided by his fellow apostles and only appeased by the thought of combating the Skull Knight. He then considers hunting down Guts after acknowledging how many apostles the swordsman has killed in his quest for revenge. Suddenly, Zodd experiences a vision of the Falcon of Light, wherein he assumes his true form and attacks, resulting in his immediate defeat to the apparition. As Zodd regains consciousness, he finds his left horn severed before him and a gash present on his forehead. He stares up at the crow-filled sky before hearing a disembodied voice beckoning him to travel to Albion where "the desired" will come.[2]

Manga E175 Zodd Kneeling

Zodd kneeling before his desired one.

During the city's destruction caused by the Incarnation Ceremony, Zodd arrives at the outskirts where he comes face to face with the Skull Knight.[14] The two travel together to Albion after daybreak to find the result of the ritual: a reconstituted Griffith.[15] Zodd then bows to his new master, killing the Kushan soldiers advancing towards him before flying off with Griffith in tow.[16][17]

Millennium Empire Arc Edit

Manga E180 HoS Battle Climax

An excited Zodd battling Guts on the Hill of Swords.

After taking Griffith to the Hill of Swords, where Guts arrives and attacks the White Falcon, Zodd intervenes begins doing battle with the Black Swordsman.[18] Expressing his excitement to fight Guts again and intent to protect Griffith, Zodd then proceeds to do battle with the swordsman.[19] He commends Guts for having honed his abilities since their last fight, and assumes his true form, escalating the battle and resulting in the destruction of the cave near Godot's home. At that point, Griffith orders Zodd to cease fighting and carry him off to begin pursuing his dream.[20]

Zodd later appears in armor when Griffith commences his initial attack on the Kushan invasion force that took over Midland, massacring numerous Kushan soldiers alongside several powerful apostles that have arrived to serve Griffith as his reborn Band of the Falcon.[21][22] Later, Griffith sends Zodd, Grunbeld and other war demons to kill the witch Flora,[23] considering her an obstacle to his goal. While Grunbeld duels a weakened Guts, Zodd once again combats the Skull Knight. When Guts is reinvigorated upon donning the Berserker Armor, Zodd reminisces about previous duels with the Skull Knight, and questions if the knight intends for Guts to walk the same path as him.[24] From then on, Zodd and the Skull Knight cease their battle to observe the inhuman tenacity of a Berserker Guts.

Manga E277 Human Bullet

Guts and Zodd form an uneasy and temporary alliance to deal with Ganishka.

Zodd again crosses paths with Guts in Vritannis, when he leads apostles against Ganishka and the Kushan emperor's pishacha army. Though he and Guts join forces to defeat Ganishka's mist form[5] – neither capable of defeating their mutual enemy alone – Zodd tells the swordsman that they will have to settle their duel another time. However, when Guts learns that Griffith is outside the city to face Ganishka and his army, Zodd threatens to mince the swordsman if he considers going after the White Falcon. Guts accepts the apostle's terms after Serpico reminds him of his priorities, and Zodd then leaves to lead the apostles out of the city to rejoin Griffith.[25]

Days later, during the Band of the Falcon's final battle with an ascended Ganishka, Zodd flies Griffith up to the towering apostle's head and is present at the ground zero of the Great Roar of the Astral World.[26]

Fantasia Arc Edit

Manga E356

Zodd ready for a new battle.

After the establishment of Falconia, Griffith and the Band of the Falcon engaged with the jötnar in a battle. Zodd is one of the first to enter combat. In response, the giant leader orders subordinate jötnar to bring a massive hydra to sic on the Falcons. Zodd engages the hydra, strangling and biting off several of its heads while from afar Irvine supports him, shooting arrows into the giant snake. The finishing blow is dealt by Grunbeld, who burns the hydra with his fire breath. Later, Zodd and his companions return triumphantly to Falconia.

Abilities Edit

Even among apostles, Zodd's fighting ability is legendary. He is regarded as the most powerful of physically-based apostles.

Master Swordsman/Tactician: Due to his incredible age, Zodd has learned a large variety of fighting styles and tactics throughout his centuries of battle. He is able to fight masterfully with nearly any weapon he finds on the battlefield, but his preferred weaponry are dual-wielding swords and battleaxes. When facing in battle with Guts on the Hill of Swords, he is able to inspect within seconds that his sword is damaged by the Dragon Slayer's massive swings and quickly discards it, adopting a new battle style from new weapons on the spot.

Supernatural Strength: Zodd is able to defeat the average apostle with ease, and is the only apostle known to have survived an encounter with the Skull Knight, who he has fought on multiple occasions. In his apostle form, he can parry large weapons with his horns and claws, absorb arrow volleys with his thick fur and skin, and break through solid concrete and rock with sheer force. His strength is such that he can send a fully-armored Guts with his Dragon Slayer (a combined approximate 363 kg) flying across the battlefield with the swipe of his paw. Furthermore, he is capable of tearing fully armored men and horses to pieces with a single swipe.

Supernatural Durability: Zodd's durability is exceptional; he is able to endure several lighting strikes from Ganishka, an attack which kills several of his fellow apostles yet which he is able to mostly shrug off. In addition, Zodd shows incredible pain tolerance; reacting to his arm being cut off with mere amusement.

Regeneration: If damaged or grievously injured, Zodd can regenerate and heal his wounds well-nigh instantly. When his arm is severed while battling Guts and Griffith, Zodd merely picks it up and reattaches it to the bloody stump before the wound is fused and healed within moments. He was also badly slashed across the abdomen during his confrontation with Guts upon the Hill of Swords, but the wound vanished within seconds. However, this is only possible if Zodd can physically reattach the severed piece of himself; for instance, he is unable to regenerate his horn after it is metaphysically cut off.

Supersonic Flight: In his aerial form, he can generate wings which allow him to fly at supersonic speeds and rip apart flesh.

Notes Edit

  • According to the Berserk Official Guidebook, Zodd is 220 cm and 165 kg in his base form, and 350 cm and 1001 kg in his true form. (NOTE: The Berserk Official Guidebook is highly questionable in its veracity.)
  • Many mercenaries regard Zodd as a "god of the battlefield".[4][2]
  • Guts and Griffith are the only men in 300 years who have wounded Zodd.[6]

References Edit

  1. ^ a b Berserk, Volume 5, "Nosferatu Zodd (3)"
  2. ^ a b c d e Berserk, Volume 17, "Revelation (3)"
  3. ^ Berserk, Volume 22, "Unchanged"
  4. ^ a b c Berserk, Volume 5, "Nosferatu Zodd (1)"
  5. ^ a b Berserk, Volume 32, "Human Bullet"
  6. ^ a b c Berserk, Volume 5, "Nosferatu Zodd (4)"
  7. ^ Berserk, Volume 5, "Nosferatu Zodd (2)"
  8. ^ Berserk, Volume 8, "Battle to Capture Doldrey (5)"
  9. ^ Berserk, Volume 8, "Battle to Capture Doldrey (6)"
  10. ^ Berserk, Volume 11, "The One Who Comes Flying..."
  11. ^ Berserk, Volume 11, "The Immortal One, Again"
  12. ^ Berserk, Volume 13, "Storm of Death (1)"
  13. ^ Berserk, Volume 13, "Escape"
  14. ^ Berserk, Volume 20, "Shadow of Idea (3)"
  15. ^ Berserk, Volume 21, "Dawn"
  16. ^ Berserk, Volume 21, "Arrival"
  17. ^ Berserk, Volume 21, "Starting a Journey with Resolve"
  18. ^ Berserk, Volume 22, "Reunion on the Hill of Swords"
  19. ^ Berserk, Volume 22, "Beast Swordsman vs Black Swordsman"
  20. ^ Berserk, Volume 22, "Prologue to the War Chronicle"
  21. ^ Berserk, Volume 22, "War Cry of the Wind (1)"
  22. ^ Berserk, Volume 22, "War Cry of the Wind (2)"
  23. ^ Berserk, Volume 26, "Flames (1)"
  24. ^ Berserk, Volume 26, "Berserker Armor (2)"
  25. ^ Berserk, Volume 32, "Setting Sail"
  26. ^ Berserk, Volume 34, "Fissure"
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