|“||So, we meet again, Buzz Lightyear... FOR THE LAST TIME!||„|
|~ Emperor Zurg, when he confronts Buzz Lightyear.|
The Evil Emperor Zurg, better known as Emperor Zurg or simply Zurg, is the most recurring antagonist in the Toy Story franchise. He is the teritary antagonist in Toy Story 2, the main antagonist of Buzz Lightyear of Star Command and its film Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins and a cameo character in Toy Story 3. He is Buzz Lightyear's arch-enemy and Bonus Belt Buzz's father.
In the film, he was voiced by the Pixar worker, Andrew Stanton. In the Buzz Lightyear of Star Command series, he was voiced by Wayne Knight, who also played Krudsky in Scooby-Doo and The Goblin King, Dennis Nedry in Jurassic Park, Newman from Seinfeld, and Al McWhiggin, the secondary antagonist of his original appearance Toy Story 2.
As shown in the film and TV series, Zurg was known to be the most evil person in his galaxy, dedicated his entire life to have it under his iron fist by all means necessary. He is shown to be intelligent and ruthless, as he was willing to take down anyone that serve as an obstacle to himself or his plans. However, in the series, he can be quite campy and comedic in nature, as he tends to do several comical antics such as videotaping Buzz's speeches for his own amusement keeping a Troll doll collection, and mentioning an equally evil "Nana Zurg".
Zurg was originally set to appear in the first Toy Story film, but was cut out from the final version. However, he is mentioned three times. First by Andy Davis after Buzz Lightyear arrives, then Buzz during his introduction to Woody and the rest of Andy's toys, being described as the "sworn enemy of the Galactic Alliance", and finally once more by Buzz when he and Woody are lost at the gas station during their argument.
Toy Story Treats
He was mentioned in some Toy Story Treats.
Toy Story 2
|“|| Zurg: Surrender, Buzz Lightyear! I have won! |
Bonus Belt Buzz: I'll never give in! You killed my father!
Zurg: No, Buzz... I am your father!
|~ Emperor Zurg parodying a very famous scene.|
Zurg made his first appearance in the Toy Story franchise in Toy Story 2, where he was the tertiary antagonist.
He is first seen in the video game that Rex is playing. He fights Buzz, but since Rex's arms are small, he cannot execute the combos needed to defeat Zurg, and so Zurg defeats Buzz in the game, much to Rex's distraught.
Later on, when the real, Buzz, Rex, Slinky Dog, Hamm and Mr. Potato Head and Rex head over to Al's Toy Barn to find and rescue Woody from Al McWhiggin (a toy collector who plans to sell him to a toy museum in Japan) Buzz gets accidentally swapped with another Buzz Lightyear action figure with a utility Belt, he watches as Bonus Belt Buzz and the other toys taking refuge in Al's bag as Al heads back to his apartment. Buzz is forced to knock out a few boxes to leave the store and head for the apartment, but as he leaves, a box is being wedged between the doors, and a Zurg action figure is inside. Zurg breaks out from his box, spots Buzz and, being unaware that he's just a toy, follows Buzz to Al's apartment.
Eventually, Zurg reaches Al's apartment through the top of the elevator shaft, where he confronts both Buzzes. A fight takes place on top of the elevator between Bonus Belt Buzz and Zurg while the original Buzz and the other toys open the emergency hatch to save Woody. At first, Bonus Belt Buzz had the upper hand, but Zurg grabs him and defeats him, demanding he surrender. Bonus Belt Buzz says that Zurg killed his father, but Zurg tells him that he is his father, much to Bonus Belt Buzz's distraught. Zurg then prepares to finish off Bonus Belt Buzz, but Rex turns away in fear, which causes his large tail to accidentally hit Zurg, sending him screaming as he falls down the elevator shaft, much to Rex's delight.
However, Zurg somehow survived his fall, but has forgotten that Bonus Belt Buzz is his enemy due to the impact. As such, Bonus Belt Buzz decides to have spend some fun with Zurg with a game of catch, and Zurg seems to enjoy it, telling Bonus Belt Buzz to go long as he fires a ball for Bonus Belt Buzz to catch.
Buzz Lightyear of Star Command Movie and TV series
|“||CURSE YOU BUZZ LIGHTYEAR!||„|
|~ Zurg whenever he is defeated by Buzz Lightyear.|
In the series, which is presumably where the Buzz Lightyear character originates in-universe, Zurg rules an empire on Planet Z, and wants to rule the entire galaxy while destroying Star Command. Emperor Zurg considers Buzz his archenemy and often takes any opportunity to eliminate him. Most of his subjects are robots. His feet double as rockets and he can transform his arms into a variety of weapons. His most personal ally is Warp Darkmatter, who was a Space Ranger and Buzz's partner until his betrayal. Despite often breaking the seriousness of otherwise purely evil statements, Zurg is widely considered the most evil person in the galaxy, especially by the other villains. In the series, Zurg is a flamboyant villain who is just as much a comic relief character and has many comedic habits, though he remains as a competent, formidable, and influential opponent similar to his role in Toy Story 2.
The episode "War, and Peace and War" was notably the only episode where Zurg was forced to team up with Buzz Lightyear to defeat the Heed (led by Guzelian), a common enemy that was trying to take over their galaxy by tricking all planets to dismantle their defense system for peace.
In Stranger Invasion, he revealed himself to be Buzz's father (a parody upon The Empire Strikes Back and a nearly identical scene in Toy Story 2), but quickly took it back, using the statement as a 'Made You Look' to stun Buzz and gain the upper hand.
On the show, Zurg had many minions to do his bidding.
- Grubs (voiced by Frank Welker) - Zurg's equivalents to the LGMs of Star Command (though far less competent). They perform mechanical and technical duties. The Grubs work for Zurg against their will and also desire freedom, but many of them are simply too afraid to try to defect.
- Brain Pods (various voices for each one) - Cybernetic brains in mobile jars, who serve Zurg as scientists and researchers. Although they take pride in their creations, they secretly harbor a desire to escape from Zurg's control (two of which are shown succeeding in doing so on-screen).
- Hornets - The Hornets are Zurg's robotic foot soldiers, extremely expendable, lousy shots and always get vaporized in mass numbers by Lightyear's team. Hornets come in different models, but the most frequently seen are yellow and of average height.
Toy Story 3
Zurg was mentioned in the Toy Story 3, a few times by Buzz after Lots-O' Huggin' Bear switches him to "Demo Mode". He is later mentioned again by Andy when he gives Buzz to his new owner Bonnie Anderson. Zurg eventually appears during the credits of the film, arriving at Sunnyside Daycare Center with a giraffe and a small dinosaur, where he is greeted by Stretch. It is currently stated that this Zurg is a different one from the second film.
Video Game Appearances
Toy Story 2: Buzz Lightyear to the Rescue
Zurg is also a boss in the Toy Story 2 video game Toy Story 2: Buzz Lightyear to the Rescue. He is the titular boss of the game's twelfth level, The Evil Emperor Zurg, and the fourth main boss encountered by Buzz Lightyear.
Zurg is fought on top of an elevator within the Elevator Hop, and Buzz must be careful not to fall off the edge during the battle. Zurg will constantly hover above Buzz firing spheres at him that will damage him on contact, although Buzz can deflect these by spinning. The yellow spheres travel towards him and then disappear, whereas the green ones will come back at Buzz and home in on him. Buzz must shoot Zurg with his laser while he's in range to damage him, and once his health has been fully diminished, the boss will topple over the side of the
elevator and disappear into the darkness below. Buzz will then be allowed to proceed to the following level.
The Zurg Kite is the boss of the game's second level, Andy’s Neighborhood. As the name suggests, this boss is a kite inspired by the Evil Emperor Zurg. It is fought on a wooden platform at the very top of the tall garden tree, and its only attack is spinning into Buzz. He can hurt the Zurg Kite with his laser while it’s floating in the air, but is invulnerable while it’s spinning. Upon its defeat, Buzz will obtain a Pizza Planet Token, but he must be careful not to fall out of the tree during the battle.
Toy Story 3 The Video Game
Zurg is also in every version of the Toy Story 3 videogame, except the Nintendo DS version. A Playstation 3 exclusive allows the player to play as Zurg.
Zurg is also the main antagonist of the Toy Story playset in Disney INFINITY.
- Zurg is a parody of Darth Vader of the Star Wars franchise, in fact, in Toy Story 2, during his battle with Bonus Belt Buzz Lightyear, Zurg tells Bonus Belt Buzz that he's his father, and parodies the scene in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back where Darth Vader tells Luke Skywalker he's his father. Plus, both Toy Story 2 and Star Wars: The Phantom Menace came out in 1999.
- Zurg's species is an issue of much debate. The four predominant theories are that he is either a human, a robot, a cyborg, or an alien. To this day, there is no concrete answer, but there is theoretically enough evidence to rule out Zurg being a robot due to his eating and sleeping habits.
- Zurg made a cameo appearance in the 2015 live action Disney film, Tomorrowland.
- Zurg and Sid Phillips from the first film are the only two Toy Story villains who are related to the heroes.
- Zurg turns out to be the Toy Story franchise's most popular villain to date.
- In the early concept art, Zurg was originally going to be a small toy alien with a robot body.
- A small version of Zurg was in the 2011 Toy Story Toons short film Small Fry.