Henry Cavill Shares The Impact of Killing Zod in Man of Steel

Henry Cavill discusses why Superman’s death at the hands of Zod in Man of Steel is such a pivotal moment for the character. Cavill hasn’t donned the cape for a new Superman picture in several years, but Man of Steel remains a fan favorite among superhero fans worldwide. The Zack-Snyder-directed picture debuts Cavill’s rendition of the character as well as a memorable adversary in Michael Shannon’s Zod.

Superman Vs. Zod

Man of Steel follows Clark Kent as he discovers his extraterrestrial ancestry and confronts the final members of his species who have come to attack Earth. During the film’s outstanding final fight, Superman overcomes Zod by breaking his neck, much to the amazement of viewers everywhere. While Cavill hasn’t done a single Superman feature since 2013’s Man of Steel, he would go on to reprise his character in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and both the normal and Zack Snyder’s versions of Justice League.

Cavill commented on Man of Steel and what finishing Zod in such a violent manner means for his character in a recent interview with THR. Cavill argues that the event was significant because it influenced who Superman was and how he would act in the future. “The killing of Zod gave a reason for the character to never kill again. There’s an opportunity for growth after that, to explore the psyche of Superman as a deep, seemingly invulnerable god-like being but with a real feeling on the inside.”

Superman: Man of Steel

The moment was obviously frightening, but Cavill’s words show that it wasn’t done only for shock value. As far as character-defining events go, killing the last of your species is a major one, and it appears that both Cavill and Snyder took this choice forward in their subsequent flicks. In Batman V Superman, for example, despite Wayne’s repeated efforts to assassinate him, Superman obviously has no intention of killing Bruce Wayne. Interestingly, Superman’s execution of Zod wasn’t the only contentious move made in a Snyder-directed picture involving renowned heroes, with Batman’s widespread murdering of criminals in Batman V Superman also drawing criticism from certain fans.

Superman: Man of Steel

Zod’s ugly death is one of the most unforgettable scenes in Man of Steel, and it’s comforting to know that it was done with the aim of molding the character. It’s easy to think of Superman as a god-like, indestructible figure, but Cavil obviously wants to go beyond that. Instead of being a one-time occurrence, Zod’s death transformed Superman into the version of the character that fans know and love. Hopefully, Cavill will be given another chance to wear the cape in the future for a new solo Superman film where he can more completely explore the mind of the iconic character and give fans more of what they love while also challenging them to perceive Superman in exciting new ways.

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