"My directive is as it always was--to preserve the best of Krypton. I once believed it was Kandor City. Now I believe that the best of Krypton lies within the blood of the Els."

Brainiac is an alien being known for conquering civilizations and killing billions of people.

Biography[edit | edit source]

Prelude[edit | edit source]

Bainiac is an ancient being, and having conquered a multitude of worlds, Braniac eventually became an enemy of the Kryptonian hero known as Superman. In time it was assumed by Adam Strange that Brainiac found a way to time travel to the past during the time Superman's grandfather Seg-El was alive, and so Adam travelled back through time himself in an attempt to prevent Krypton's destruction.

As was his wont, Brainiac made his way for Krypton, intending to destroy it and add Kandor City to his collection.[1] He sent a forward scout, called a Sentry, to infiltrate the planet, unbeknownst to its occupants.[2]

Season 1[edit | edit source]

Infiltration[edit | edit source]

Brainiac on his Skull Ship

After the landing of Brainiac's Sentry, it possesses Rhom who proceedes to assail a Kandorian communications hub, gathering data and transmitting it to Brainiac until incapacitated by Seg-El with an electrostatic discharge grenade given to him by Lyta-Zod. Prior to incapacitation and subsequent death however, the Sentry manages to not only inform Brainiac, who set course for Krypton as a result,[3] but also to pass on an infected idol to the Voice of Rao via Ona, resulting in the Voice becoming the next Sentry.[4] As the Voice of Rao, Brainiac becomes attached to Ona as his servant, because she intrigued him.[5]

During this time, it is revealed by Dru-Zod that Brainiac did not in fact travel back through time; Dru-Zod himself did, in order to save Krypton. Conquering worlds is simply what Brainiac has always done.[5]

Coup attempt[edit | edit source]

Brainiac, through the Voice of Rao, defeats the coup attempt

Orchestrated by Daron-Vex and Jayna-Zod, a coup is attempted to dethrone the Voice of Rao, before it was realized that he had become Brainiac's Sentry. Brainiac, having drawn insight from Ona and a curiosity for the native species, ordered (through the Voice of Rao) a large gathering of individuals to come to the Nova Cycle celebration, when the coup was planned to commence via bombing. Dev-Em, realizing the potential for civilian casualties, prevents the coup from going forward by feigning a bomb alarm, emptying the room and sparing the Sentry.

After the botched first attempt, the coup is initiated again in the Voice of Rao's private chambers with a large group of insurgent Sagitari under the command of Jayna-Zod and Dev-Em. Here, the Sentry is able to quickly overwhelm and put down the would-be assassins with only Jayna successfully escaping, while the rest became technologically enslaved as the Red Shard.[5]

Reborn[edit | edit source]

Through the Voice of Rao, Brainiac sets about preparing the city for his arrival, using energy from the Genesis Chamber to hasten his approach. After revealing that he was not human, he poses as a god reborn to the people, increasing his popularity.[6]

Arrival[edit | edit source]

Brainiac arrives at Krypton

Eventually Seg-El and Dru-Zod, with the help of Jax-Ur's Black Zero, manage to seemingly kill Brainiac's Voice of Rao Sentry in the Genesis Chamber. In actuality the Sentry survived, proceeding to Kandor's shield generator for more power, having lost access to the Genesis Chamber. There the Sentry is finally killed by Nyssa-Vex, but at that point Brainiac's ship came into view, and his true body reforms below.

Final battle[edit | edit source]

As Brainiac begins to enclose Kandor City for his collection, he is approached by Dru-Zod, offering to turn over Val-El, who had seen the future in the Phantom Zone and would prove to be a valuable informational asset to Brainiac, in exchange for sparing Krypton. As Brainiac and Dru-Zod enter Val-El's secret lab, Brainiac approaches Val to demonstrate that "Val" was actually a hologram by waving his hand through him, indicating that he was not tricked. To do so however, he had to step onto the portal to the Phantom Zone, which Seg-El then triggered, banishing Brainiac into the Phantom Zone and saving all of Krypton, though Seg himself is drawn into the portal with Brainiac.[7]

Season 2[edit | edit source]

"Light-Years From Home"[edit | edit source]

Brainiac, his head smashed open by Seg-El

Appearing to Seg-El as a hallucination of his grandfather, Val-El, Brainiac tricks Seg into using his sunstone to open a wormhole out of the Phantom Zone, enabling them both to escape back into the real world.

They arrive in Colu, Brainiac's home world, where Brainiac insists that Seg-El must survive if Brainiac himself is to survive, and so coerces Seg-El into abandoning his pursuit of revenge. Explaining that he seeks to reconstruct a ship using remnants of Coluan technology, and that they ought to work together until that can happen, Seg disregards this and attacks him.

Seg seemingly succeeds, and Brainiac's corpse is left with a crushed skull in the forest.[8]

"Ghost In The Fire"[edit | edit source]

Brainiac's body is broken, but Seg-El experiences strange bursts of knowledge coming to him at random, and eventually Lobo discovers that Brainiac is within Seg. Apparently, although Brainiac's body was destroyed, he managed to possess Seg in the process. Through Seg, Brainiac is able to use telepathic and telekinetic powers to defend his host from Lobo, as well as enhanced reflexes. Seg is able to draw upon Brainiac's knowledge of when exactly Brainiac would take control of Seg's body, and by the end of the episode Seg's eyes become completely black like Brainiac's.[9]

"Will To Power"[edit | edit source]

Brainiac tempts Seg-El

Finally taking full control of Seg-El as he flees from Lobo, Brainiac comes to Seg in a facsimile of Val-El's Fortress of Solitude, all within Seg's mind. Brainiac notes that Seg's will is "impressive" and that he has chosen to live on in Seg. Seg rebukes Brainiac, saying he wasn't chosen but rather taken out of necessity due to the damage Brainiac sustained in the Phantom Zone, that Brainiac needs a host for replacement "bio-organic components", which intrigues Brainiac. Brainiac offers Seg eternal life, and although Seg initially rejects it, Brainiac then offers "freedom from worry, from pain, from uncertainty," and all the heavy burdens Seg carries. Seg once again rejects him, saying that burdens "build character", and Brainiac once more offers that together they can achieve "anything we want", which Seg seemingly accepts.

Seg, having planned to be rid of Brainiac by bringing him back to the natal chamber where Brainiac was born, is eventually overpowered by Brainiac again once Lobo begins to approach. Brainiac appears before Seg, suspicious that he is hiding something, and sifts through Seg's memories for what he "truly desire(s)". He morphs into Nyssa-Vex, Kem, and eventually, after saying that he knows exactly how to exploit emotion, Lyta-Zod. As Lyta, Brainiac manages to exploit Seg's loneliness and get underneath his skin.

Brainiac, seemingly helpless before Lobo

Snapping out of it, Seg identifies that Brainiac has an unfounded belief that acquiring knowledge will ensure absolute control, and that since he may lose that, he is experiencing fear. Brainiac, moved for the first time, begins to lose control of his illusion as Lyta, and although "Lyta" approaches Seg, saying "stay with me", Seg keeps Brainiac at bay via telekinesis, saying "welcome home asshole" as Seg once again resumes control. Adam then pulls Seg off of the natal chamber table, and since Brainiac is locked into place, Brainiac is pulled out of Seg to immediately reform on the table; right next to Lobo, who immediately attacks Brainiac.[10]

"Danger Close"[edit | edit source]

Waking up from a dream about how he first met Lyta-Zod, Seg-El hears Brainiac's voice commenting on the memory. When Seg meets again with Zod, Seg tells him that he knows that Zod had destroyed the Phantom Zone projector after he and Brainiac had gotten trapped. Zod tells Seg that he would do it again as it saved Krypton from Brainiac, though asks what had happened to him. Seg tells his son that Brainiac was now dead, and Zod can't help but feel proud of his father for accomplishing that.

Seg-El learns that Brainiac is still within him.

When Seg is put through the Somatic Reconditioning process, he proves to be immune to it, although still suffering great pain. As the guard looks at his display, he is shocked and caught off guard by something on-screen long enough for Seg to incapacitate him. Seg looks himself and sees that there is an image of Brainiac on the display, alongside his own, indicating that he is still a part of Seg.[11]

"A Better Yesterday"[edit | edit source]

Brainiac appears before Seg-El

When General Zod demands to know how Seg-El resisted being reconditioned, Brainiac appears beside Seg as a hallucination, advising him not to answer truthfully. Although Seg can see Brainiac, Zod cannot, as Brainiac is only a part of Seg's mind. Brainiac also advises Seg to say something in order to avoid arousing suspicion, so Seg orders Zod to undo what he did to Lyta.

Brainiac comments on General Zod to Seg-El while time appears stopped, counseling Seg on what to do

As Zod contacts Lyta, who is being held hostage by the rebels, Brainiac appears to stop time to appear before Seg, asking whether Seg believes Zod when he says he is not willing to let Lyta die. Brainiac comments that "Zod is quite a formidable liar. He is able to convince himself of almost anything when the occasion necessitates it." Brainiac explains that he never left Seg, that only an infinitesimal fragment of himself is within Seg, but that even that much was enough to save Seg from the Somatic Reconditioning. He urges Seg to stop allowing emotion to trample rational thought if they are both to survive, because that allowed Zod to disarm him. He counsels Seg to warn Lyta about the reconditioning and then kill Zod, which Seg happily agrees with.

As Seg retreats from his failed attempt, Brainiac provides a running stream of advice and commands so that Seg can kill all Sagitari in his path, allowing a smooth escape.[12]

"In Zod We Trust"[edit | edit source]

Brainiac after helping Seg-El stabilize the skimmer

Brainiac enters while Seg is grieving, scolding Seg-El for mourning an insignificant being when "death is inevitable", and counsels Seg to divest himself of emotion so that he can act. Although Seg screams at Brainiac, he does actually follow Brainiac's advice to keep moving. Later, when Seg flees Kandor and his skimmer begins to fail due to damage, Brainiac appears and offers Seg advice on how to stabilize it, saving himself, Nyssa-Vex, and her son.

Brainiac proposes a deal

Brainiac appears one last time before Seg in New Lurvan, commenting on Seg's tears, noting that they are tears of frustration, not sadness, frustration that he cannot prevail against General Zod; not without Brainiac's assistance. Seg initially denies this, but Brainiac cuts to the truth, and Seg relents, asking how Brainiac can help. Brainiac asks that he be taken to his ship, his "quantum consciousness", and in exchange he would imbue Seg with the power to defeat Zod. Seg initially rejects this as well, saying that Brainiac is manipulating him, that he wouldn't just leave Krypton, but Brainiac gives his word, and for his son's sake, Seg accepts Brainiac's deal.[13]

"Zods and Monsters"[edit | edit source]

Brainiac wonders where Seg-El is going in a skimmer, and when Nyssa-Vex comments that Seg is being quiet to prevent Brainiac from learning where they're going, Brainiac notes that he can hear Seg's thoughts too. Realizing himself compromised, Seg rapidly tells Nyssa that Brainiac must not be brought to his Skull Ship, that Brainiac must be removed from him, but Brainiac says "that's enough", freezing Seg in place. Seg manages to grate out "fortress", and Nyssa begins traveling in that direction, Brainiac still holding Seg motionless.

Brainiac replaces Val-El's hologram

As Seg is brought to the Fortress of Solitude, Brainiac continues attempting to seize control of Seg, shutting down his body. When Val-El's hologram commences a procedure to remove Brainiac, Brainiac forces Seg to damage the machine, saying "I am sorry, Seg-El, but you know I cannot allow you to complete this procedure." Even so, Seg is restrained, and Nyssa-Vex successfully completes it, extracting Brainiac's Nanites and giving them to the hologram of Val. Shortly after, the hologram reports the Nanites to be missing; the Nanites have entered the Fortress' computer. Despite the hologram scanning the Fortress three times, and even scanning Nyssa and Jor-El, they find nothing until Brainiac takes complete control of the computer and replaces the Val-hologram with his own.

Brainiac gives Seg-El one last offer before departing

Immediately, Brainiac's Skull Ship starts up and begins to rise from the ground, remotely activated by Brainiac via the Fortress' communications. Brainiac tells Seg that had he kept his end of the arrangement, this could've been avoided, as his designs for Krypton no longer involve Kandor City at all. Although Seg disbelieves, Brainiac says "that is of no consequence", before his ship blasts a hole in the roof of the Fortress. Brainiac continues that "there is no greater power than the universe", and offers Seg the chance to come with him and "discover it in ways a Kryptonian can only dream of". Seg rebuffs him, saying Brainiac doesn't understand him if he thinks Seg craves "power to destroy" like Brainiac does, but Brainiac replies that it is in fact Seg who misunderstands him, that he only wants to preserve unique cultures and save them from "inevitably self-destructive impulses".

Brainiac takes Jor-El with him

Seg, however, is unmoved, calling Brainiac a monster who he will never join. Brainiac calls his choice "as illogical as it is disappointing", but surprisingly respects Seg-El's right to make it. He bids Seg goodbye, but as he departs, his voice reverberates throughout the Fortress, saying that the best of Krypton lies not in Kandor City, but in the "blood of the Els", and as he vanishes, so too does Jor-El. Brainiac's ship then disappears.[14]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Season 1[edit | edit source]

Season 2[edit | edit source]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • In some versions, Brainiac is responsible for destroying Krypton and even made Kandor part of his collection.
    • His collecting of Kandor in the comics is known as The Bottling of Kandor

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Promotional images[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Goldberg, Ian, Goyer, David S. (writers), Donnelly, Ciaran & McCarthy, Colm (directors) (March 21, 2018). "Pilot". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 1. Syfy.
  2. Welsh, Cameron (writer) & Donnelly, Ciaran (director) (March 28, 2018). "House of El". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 2. Syfy.
  3. Tucker, Nadria (writer), Shill, Steve (director) (April 4, 2018). "The Rankless Initiative". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 3. Syfy.
  4. Kalteux, Luke (writer), Boak, Keith (director) (April 11, 2018). "The Word of Rao". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 4. Syfy.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Egan, Doris (writer), Dennis, Kate (director) (April 25, 2018). "Civil Wars". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 6. Syfy.
  6. Francis, David Paul (writer), Hüseyin, Metin (director) (May 2, 2018). "Transformation". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 7. Syfy.
  7. Fiveash, Chad & Stoteraux, James & Welsh, Cameron (writers), Donnelly, Ciaran (director) (May 23, 2018). "The Phantom Zone". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 10. Syfy.
  8. Fiveash, Chad & Stoteraux, James & Welsh, Cameron (writers), Donnelly, Ciaran (director) (May 23, 2018). "The Phantom Zone". Krypton. Season 1. Episode 10. Syfy.
  9. Horne, Kiersten Van (writer), Roskin, Marc (director) (June 19, 2019). "Ghost In The Fire". Krypton. Season 2. Episode 2. Syfy.
  10. Patel, Lina (writer), Ramsay, Julius (director) (June 26, 2019). "Will To Power". Krypton. Season 2. Episode 3. Syfy.
  11. Kalteux, Luke (writer), Ramsay, Julius (director) (July 3, 2019). "Danger Close". Krypton. Season 2. Episode 4. Syfy.
  12. David Kob (writer), Hüseyin, Metin (director) (July 10, 2019). "A Better Yesterday". Krypton. Season 2. Episode 5. Syfy.
  13. Tucker, Nadria (writer), Hüseyin, Metin (director) (July 17, 2019). "In Zod We Trust". Krypton. Season 2. Episode 6. Syfy.
  14. Thompson, Joel Anderson (writer), Watson, Erica (director) (July 24, 2019). "Zods and Monsters". Krypton. Season 2. Episode 7. Syfy.
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