- "A good death is its own reward."
Sub-commander Faora-Ul is an infamous Kryptonian war criminal and second-in-command of the Sword of Rao, serving as the loyal right hand to General Zod, and was one of the first great enemies of the hero Superman.
Together with Zod, Faora attempted to re-establish Krypton on Earth by bringing about a terraformation apocalypse, but she was ultimately defeated by Nathan Hardy and sucked into a singularity, sending her back into the Phantom Zone.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Personality
- 3 Powers and abilities
- 4 Equipment
- 5 Relationships
- 6 Trivia
- 7 Behind the scenes
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Faora-Ul was born on the distant planet Krypton, genetically engineered into the Kryptonian Warrior Guild as a soldier and protector of Krypton. She was fiercely dedicated, answering only to General Zod, and would soon be known as the "Tigress of Zod," causing Faora to be feared throughout all of Krypton for her ferocity and bloodthirst.
Alongside General Zod, Faora joined the radical Sword of Rao and conspired a coup d’état on the planet Krypton, supplanting the ruling Kryptonian Law Council. The Sword of Rao attempted to overthrow the council and start anew by extinguishing the “unworthy” lineages that had led Krypton and its people to the edge of annihilation. They attacked the legislation chamber, where scientist Jor-El was in council with him informing them Krypton was lost and that they had to abandon their planet. Faora threw council members to the floor on Zod's orders, starting with Lor-Em.
As General Zod had Jor-El arrested, Faora and Zod's other rebels took away the council members, intending to later execute them. Jor-El escaped, however, stole the growth codex, and returned to his home, the House of El Citadel. Faora then helped Zod chase Jor-El to the citadel. Upon arriving, General Zod engaged Jor-El in combat, killing him, while Jor's wife Lara launched the growth codex off inside their infant son's starship. The Sapphire Guards forces arrived shortly thereafter and arrested Zod, Faora and the rest of the Sword of Rao.
Sometime later, Faora and the rest of the Sword of Rao were brought before the now free Kryptonian Law Council. For the crimes of murder and high treason, High Eminence Lor-Em sentenced all of them to 300 cycles of somatic reconditioning inside the Phantom Zone, on board the prison starship Black Zero. They hence were forcibly boarded onto the ship and traveled through the Phantom Zone projector to their fate. However, Krypton would explode shortly thereafter, with the explosion releasing the Black Zero from the Phantom Zone, leaving Faora, her allies, and Kal-El the only Kryptonian survivors. Faora, devastated that her world had blown up to the point of uncharacteristically shedding tears, followed her general's plans to find fellow survivors, the growth codex, and a new planet (suitable for terraforming into New Krypton).
After Kal-El, now grown up, activated a thousand-year-old scout ship, it sent a signal throughout space, which the Black Zero picked up. Knowing they had located Kal-El and the codex, they set course for Earth. After Zod sent a message across Earth requesting Kal-El be handed over, Zod sent Faora in a dropship to pick him up along with the human, Lois Lane. Faora fitted Lois with one of their breathers so that she would be able to breathe on board the Black Zero. The atmosphere aboard their ship disrupted Kal's powers and rendered him unconscious, during which time he was strapped down. Both he and Lois were subjected to mental probing trying to find the codex. Lois had, without knowing, brought aboard Jor-El's AI hologram, which helped Lois escape and change the atmosphere aboard the ship.
General Zod had rounded up his troops and gone to Earth. Landing at Kent's farm to confront Martha Kent, Faora picked her up off the ground, demanding Martha reveal the location of Kal-El's ship, to which she glanced at the barn adjacent to the house. Releasing her, Faora leaped through the building's roof, crashing into the cellar beneath the barn's floor where she found Kal's ship hidden. Plunging her hand into the vessel's hatch, she opened the pod and reported back to Zod, explaining that the codex wasn't there. At the same time, Superman returned and tackled General Zod, flying away, with Faora and Nam-Ek in pursuit.
Catching up to the two, Faora found that Superman had severely damaged Zod's breather, which exposed him to the atmosphere of Earth, disorienting and leaving the general defenseless. After calling a transport for Zod, Faora and Nam-Ek engaged Superman, where the two quickly outmatched Kal-El with their experience and coordinated assault, battering and tossing the young Kryptonian throughout the town. Shortly after their fight began, the military intervened and Nam-Ek dealt with them. Faora tackled Kal-El herself, proving her vast fighting experience by easily beating him at the start, though he eventually overpowered her and Nam-Ek due to him having powers not yet obtained by either of them. When a missile hit her, it broke Faora's breather and she and Nam-Ek retreated in a dropship that had come to collect them.
General Zod recovered aboard his ship and commanded them to release the world engine and send the Black Zero to Metropolis where its initiated the gravity beam. Zod went to retrieve the scout ship that had signaled them to Earth while Faora commanded the troops, and soon General Zod returned with the ship followed closely by Kal-El, having destroyed the world engine. Earth military forces began to attack the Black Zero, to which Faora began to deal with them. Aboard a C-17 piloted by Hardy was Kal-El's ship, and after Faora killed two military personnel, Hardy flew the plane directly into the Black Zero.
Before Faora could get to Hardy, the plane hit the Black Zero, the two phantom drives creating a singularity that began to suck in everything in its path (including Faora, Nam-Ek, Dev-Em II, Tor-An, Jax-Ur, Car-Vex, Nadira and Gor) inwards, back into the Phantom Zone, leaving Faora unable to interfere or even be aware of Zod's subsequent defeat and death, destroying any chance of rebuilding their homeworld.
- "You are weak, Son of El; unsure of yourself. The fact that you possess a sense of morality, and we do not, gives us an evolutionary advantage. And if history has proven anything, it is that evolution always wins."
Genetically engineered to serve the Kryptonian Warrior Guild, Faora was a fierce, ruthless Kryptonian warrior driven primarily by the sadistic pleasure of killing, said to be genetically incapable of feeling empathy toward her enemies. She promised Superman that for every human life he managed to save from the Sword of Rao, that she would see to it that they would kill a million more. She was known and feared throughout Krypton as the infamous “Tigress of Zod."
Ironically, while sadistic and bloodthirsty, she shows little to no emotion when killing humans, though this is most likely because Faora is very unimpressed by the relative weakness of humans, and finds killing them to be far too easy to be considered a feat worthy of savoring. However, she notably seems to gloat before attempting to kill Colonel Nathan Hardy, claiming that a "good death" (his at her hands) is "its own reward."
Faora is also quite vain and fully aware of her exceptional skills, as she is quick to mock the naturally born Kryptonian Superman for his lack of combat skill and his sense of morality, since she believes that the latter trait, in particular, makes him weak and inconfident, giving the genetically engineered Faora an "evolutionary advantage" over him. Hence, this great amount of confidence in her own abilities allowed Faora to reach her full potential as soon as she was exposed to Earth's yellow sun, and not experience the weakness of mental power suppression. However, she could at times be overconfident, which allowed Superman to ultimately defeat Faora by catching her off-guard and promptly exploiting her temporary weakness of overloaded senses.
While the thinking boundaries programmed into Faora-Ul's engineered DNA did allow her to be an extremely formidable warrior and leader, they also induced a poor grasp of free will in Faora. Indeed, Faora is often prone to dogmatic tunnel vision and is utterly unable to live out any lifestyle other than the one for which she was born. As a result, she was unable to diplomatically coexist with humanity like Superman could, or to account for Superman's innovative combat strategy (of effectively using all the powers that Faora had not yet gained, as well as Faora's weaknesses, against her), which (in addition to her overconfidence) is ultimately what allowed the free-willed Superman to overpower Faora, despite being a far less skilled combatant.
Notably, however, despite her relentlessness, sadism, and utter lack of mercy or regard for weaker species (such as humans), Faora, much like General Zod, had a great patriotic love for her native planet of Krypton, and uncharacteristically shed tears after witnessing its destruction.
Powers and abilities
- Kryptonian physiology: As a Kryptonian, Faora-Ul's bone structure is almost identical to that of a human. On a planet near a red class M main-sequence star (like Krypton with its sun Rao), Faora would have physical attributes nearly identical to those of humans, but if on a planet near a yellow G-type main-sequence star (like Earth), she has many new abilities and powers, all of them far beyond the capabilities of humans and even metahumans. Due to Faora's ruthlessness and complete lack of restraint, she never withheld her tremendous power, which initially allowed her to swiftly overpower Superman (despite the latter's superior solar energy supply). However, Faora notably never did manage to master the powers of heat vision, X-ray vision, Arctic breath, and flight.
- Superhuman strength: Faora-Ul has a tremendous level of superhuman strength, virtually incalculable, as she is able to carry millions of tons. She can generate large shock-waves with her mighty punches, she can effortlessly hurl cars and trucks great distances, shatter concrete, breakthrough thick metal walls and doors with ease, effortlessly overpower numerous human soldiers, and fight evenly against fellow Kryptonian Superman. In fact, Faora was able to throw him all the way to the other side of Smallville, while her mighty blows were powerful enough to send him flying and visibly hurt him, making him stagger and pant in pain. She was also able to grasp Superman by the neck hard enough to make the latter wince in pain. Together with Nam-Ek, Faora was also able to force Superman back down when the latter tried to fly up into the air. Faora's strength also extends to her ability to jump great distances.
- Nigh-invulnerability: Faora-Ul's body is incredibly durable, virtually indestructible. Hence, she can withstand massive explosions, exposure to both temperature extremes, falls from great heights, high-caliber bullets, anti-tank depleted uranium rounds, Maverick missiles, plasma bolts from Kryptonian weaponry, Superman's heat vision attack (though it caused her burning pain) and even numerous mighty blows from fellow Kryptonian Superman, remaining unscathed. While Faora can be affected by the considerable force of powerful impacts, they only at most cause her to stumble and briefly knock her down, leaving her unscathed. The only known things capable of actually breaking through Faora's invulnerability and harming her are beings of comparable incalculable strength (such as other Kryptonians), as they are strong enough to physically break through her invulnerability, though only other Kryptonians can potentially kill her.
- Regenerative healing factor: Faora-Ul, in the rare instances, when she is hurt, is capable of healing at superhuman speeds, especially in direct sunlight. However, if the injuries are serious enough to instantly kill her, her healing factor will not be able to save Faora, much like how General Dru-Zod was killed after Superman broke his neck.
- Superhuman speed: Faora-Ul can run and react at incredible supersonic speeds. During her battle in Smallville, she was able to bring down numerous human soldiers before they could even react, and even land many blows onto the equally fast Superman in rapid succession, though the latter was more due to her far superior combat skills.
- Superhuman reflexes: Faora-Ul's speed seems to extend to her reflexes as well since she manages to dodge a tackle from the equally fast Superman, and when he first attempted to engage her, Faora caught and deflected all of his blows with ease, countering just as fast.
- Superhuman stamina: Faora almost never grows tired if she is continuously powered by the yellow sun of Earth. She doesn't need to eat, sleep, or breathe. Hence, she ferociously battled with Superman and numerous human soldiers without ever needing to stop and catch her breath.
- Superhuman vision: Faora-Ul has superhuman eyesight far beyond that of humans. She possesses a superior sensory arrangement of telescopic, infrared, ultraviolet, X-ray, and gamma-ray visual capabilities. She can see the entire electromagnetic spectrum when she desires, through mental focus. However, when her visor first broke open, Faora was initially overwhelmed by her multiple spectrum vision.
- X-ray vision: Faora-Ul, when her visor first broke open, was initially overwhelmed by the sudden intensity of her X-ray vision (which enabled her to see through all objects and people), and was unable to control it. The only known materials known to be impenetrable to Faora's X-ray vision are lead, the force field of a Kryptonian Breather (when rendered opaque), as well as the Kryptonian metal which the walls of the Fortress of Solitude were composed of.
- Superhuman hearing: Faora-Ul, when her visor first broke open, was initially overwhelmed by the sudden intensity of her hearing (which enabled her to simultaneously perceive numerous feeble and far noises very clearly, including both infrasound and ultrasound), and was unable to control it.
- Gifted intelligence: Faora-Ul, while not on par with General Dru-Zod, Jor-El, or Jax-Ur, is quite intelligent, having attained the prestigious rank of Sub-Commander in the Kryptonian Warrior Guild prior to joining the Sword of Rao. Faora-Ul's intellect mainly extends to her leadership, intimidation, and other military skills, though the thinking boundaries programmed into Faora's engineered DNA occasionally make her imperfect in utilizing these skills.
- Expert leader: Faora-Ul, as the Sub-commander of the Sword of Rao and General Zod's second-in-command, is a highly skilled leader, to the point that Zod always trusted her to take his place of leadership when he was forced to attend to other business, such as in the Kryptonian Civil War, when Faora held off the Sapphire Guards' attacks (while Zod engaged Jor-El to get the Codex) and in the Black Zero Event, when Faora protected the Black Zero (while Zod searching for the Fortress of Solitude).
- Multilingualism: Faora-Ul, apart from her native Kryptonian, was somehow able to quickly learn how to fluently understand and speak English (and possibly other Earth languages), as seen during her interactions with Superman, Lois Lane, General Swanwick, and Colonel Hardy.
- Master combatant: Faora-Ul, as an illustrious member of the Kryptonian Warrior Guild, is a fierce and ruthless combatant, being extremely skilled in a vast array of Kryptonian martial arts, more so than even General Zod himself. Therefore, during the Kryptonian Civil War, Faora was known and feared throughout Krypton as the infamous "Tigress of Zod" Hence, Faora easily gained the upper hand against Superman in a duel, and he was only able to defeat her by managing to break open her visor (and that only by catching her off-guard). Even without her powers, Faora is still extremely dangerous and absolutely lethal.
- Knife mastery: Faora-Ul might also have some skill in wielding bladed weaponry, since she was about to attack Colonel Hardy with a Kryptonian combat knife.
- Indomitable will: Faora-Ul, much like General Zod, has an immense determination and strength of will, which, in addition to her bloodlust, makes her an extremely formidable opponent, with Faora despising the mere idea of losing a fight or battle. As a result, it was only upon Zod's orders that she stood down and surrendered to the Sapphire Guards, as the Kryptonian Civil War was lost. Later, however, when helpless and at the mercy of High Eminence Lor-Em, Faora stood in silent defiance while being frozen into a cryocapsule, expressing no remorse for her malevolent war crimes. Later, when defeated by Superman, Faora still refused to yield, defiantly proclaiming that she would see to it that millions of humans would be wiped out in retaliation.
- Limited free will: Faora-Ul's greatest psychological weakness stems from the fact that it was genetically engineered in a genesis chamber, with the boundaries of thought programmed into its engineered DNA. Indeed, Faora induced a poor mastery of free will and a tendency to dogmatic tunnel vision. His poor free will gave him a complete lack of empathy towards humans, believing that they are weak and inferior, as Zod believes, and that they must be wiped off the face of the Earth to rebuild Krypton. Like Zod, she too was willing to kill anyone who stood in the way of her mission to rebuild Krypton, but more importantly, she mocked Kal-El for his high morality and free will superior to them, not having been raised for a specific purpose, while they yes, believing that his weakness had given the Sword of Rao an even more evolutionary advantage, a belief that turned out to be his undoing, because he had underestimated the combined intelligence of Kal-El and Jor-El, but, above all, of humans and their ability to sacrifice themselves for the world and the people they care about, even if it meant dying, as was the case with Colonel Hardy who mocked Faora before crashing the plane into the Black Zero, dying, satisfied, in the process.
- Battle Armor: Faora-Ul, as a Warrior Guild member, was hardly ever seen not wearing a suit of extremely durable and fiercely intimidating Kryptonian battle armor, equipped with a Breather.
- Combat knife: Faora-Ul always had a traditional Kryptonian combat knife by her side, with her intending to kill Colonel Hardy with it.
- Kryptonian plasma rifle (formerly): Faora-Ul wielded a Kryptonian plasma rifle while helping General Zod overthrow the Kryptonian Law Council, though it was ultimately confiscated by the Sapphire Guards.
- Kryptonian dropship: Faora-Ul has her own personal Kryptonian dropship, in which she flies down to Earth from the Black Zero, first to collect the surrendered Superman, and then to interrogate Martha Kent.
- Faora-Ul is the first fellow living Kryptonian that Superman meets as an adult, as well as the first enemy that he ever engages in a straight-up physical fight.
- Interestingly, Faora-Ul is referred to as an "alien Amazon" in the Man of Steel: The Official Movie Novelization.
Behind the scenes
- In DC Comics, Faora Hu-Ul has sometimes been depicted as the wife or lover of General Zod.
- Diane Kruger, Rosamund Pike, Alice Eve and Lindsay Lohan were considered for the role of Faora-Ul before Antje Traue was cast.
- Gal Gadot, who would later portray Wonder Woman, was offered the role of a villain in Man of Steel, presumed to be Faora-Ul, but turned it down due to pregnancy at the time.
- Samantha Win was a stunt double for Antje Traue in the role of Faora-Ul.