Movie Villains Wiki

Immortan Joe is the main antagonist of Mad Max: Fury Road. He is the tyrannical and manipulative ruler of the Cult of the V8, and the most powerful of the warlords controlling the wastelands.

He is portrayed by Hugh Keays-Byrne who also played The Toecutter.

Mad Max: Fury Road

Little is known of Joe's life prior to the apocalypse. However, when the conflict that led to the end of civilization began, Joe Moore was a Colonel in the Australian army: already a veteran of the Oil Wars, he emerged a hero of the Water Wars. However, the heroism - whether real or simply good PR - ultimately did little to save the world from the global collapse of society, and Joe quickly found himself the highest-ranking officer remaining in the entire army. Banking on his authority among his own men and his skills as a solder, he formed a biker gang of fellow ex-soldiers in the hopes of restoring order to the world; among his ranks were such figures as the henchmen dubbed Major Kalashnikov (later known as the Bullet Farmer) and the strategist Deepdog. With each battle, the gang grew stronger by slaughtering the leaders of other gangs and taking their women - his idea of bringing back society taking a dark turn from then on.

Eventually, he and his gang entered the wasteland, and with the help of a nameless local guide (later known as The People Eater) discovered a massive aquifer hidden in the desert. The aquifer was already occupied, however, and Joe's attempts to exchange captive women for water ended in failure; so, he instead took it by force, gradually taking over the rock fortress through superior tactics. Now in charge of the single biggest supply of water in the wasteland, he renamed the aquifer as his Citadel, gaining substantial followers by supplying them with water in exchange for their loyalty and adulation. He expanded his power by claiming a derelict oil refinery and an abandoned lead mine some distance from the Citadel: under the management of the People Eater and the Bullet Farmer, these two sites supplied him with the guzzoline and bullets he needed to enforce his growing empire.

Soon, the man once-known as Joe Moore was being worshiped as a savior by the people of the wasteland, renamed "Immortan Joe" for his great age and seemingly impossible survival skills. His gang, now known as the "War Boys," was no longer composed of professional soldiers, but of fanatical worshipers raised from childhood to serve his every whim. Joe indoctrinated his servants to obey without question and love him unceasingly, serving as their king, their father and their god; in return, he promised to deliver them to the warrior heaven of Valhalla, where they would ride the highways and feast with fellow heroes for all eternity. With many of the War Boys doomed to "half-life" by radiation sickness and other ailments, they were glad to sacrifice their lives to their beloved Immortan. As such, the service of the War Boys was virtually guaranteed: War Boy patrols often stalked the wasteland, capturing vehicles and travelers alike and dragging them back to the Citadel to serve as Joe's slaves, and many others sought out glorious deaths in battles with Joe's enemies, killing themselves in dramatic suicide attacks.

However, though he enjoyed the power he held over his followers and the extravagant lifestyle it afforded him, Joe wanted to maintain that power long after his death: he wanted a legacy. To that end, he captured a harem of beautiful women and tasked them with bearing his offspring, granting them luxuries beyond the reach of most wasteland citizens - including rare books and musical instruments. Ultimately, this opulence was little more than window dressing for the life of sexual slavery the wives had to endure: kept imprisoned behind a bank vault door and fitted with chastity belts to prevent sexual infidelity of any kind, they were forced to endure Joe's constant sexual advances, with harsh punishments meted out to any who dared dissent. Those who failed to provide him with an heir after three pregnancies were demoted to providing milk for the heads of Joe's empire, spending the rest of their lives as human cows for the Citadel.

By this method, Joe successfully acquired three sons: Rictus Erectus, Corpus Colossus and Scabrous Scrotus. However, all were unsuitable heirs: Rictus was immensely strong, but had the mind of a child and no instinct for leadership; Corpus was possessed of a brilliant mind, but his physical disabilities left him incapable of commanding respect among the War Boys; Scabrous was a ravening monster, a marauding psychopath who'd almost certainly destroy Joe's empire if ever allowed to claim it. So the search for a healthy heir continued, Joe growing ever-more desperate as his own illness became apparent.

At the beginning of the film, Max Rockatansky is captured by one of Immortan Joe's patrols and brought back to the Citadel as a slave. As is the policy with most male slaves of compatible blood type, Max is used as an unwilling donor for an ailing War Boy - in this case, Nux. Soon after, Joe himself sends off his War Rig to collect the owed tribute of guzzoline from Gastown and bullets from the Bullet Far, with Imperator Furiosa behind the Rig's wheel. Unbeknownst to the War Boys, Furiosa is using this opportunity to smuggle Joe's wives to freedom, keeping the entire harem concealed in a hidden compartment within the rig.

Unfortunately, Furiosa's deception does not go unnoticed for long: as soon as the rig leaves the road to Gastown, Corpus Colossus alerts his father to the unexpected change in course, prompting a suspicious Joe to investigate the vault where he normally keeps his wives. Upon finding it empty except for the shotgun-toting Miss Giddy, he pauses just long enough to disarm and interrogate her before sounding the alarm: as a result, Immortan Joe's entire army is mobilized against the fleeing War Rig with Joe himself in the lead aboard the Gigahorse, along with reinforcements led by the People Eater and the Bullet Farmer. Even the sickly Nux joins the war party on a pursuit vehicle - dragging Max into the conflict as well.

Joe's first attempts at reclaiming the Rig are unsuccessful: though a number of his pursuit vehicles are able to reach Furiosa ahead of the rest of the army, most of them are wiped out in a dust storm, while Nux loses his chance to capture the rig when Max escapes and overpowers him. Furiosa (now in a tentative partnership with Max) further stymies Joe's attempts to catch up with the rig by leading them into the canyons and allowing the Rock Rider motorcycle gang to block the path with explosives. This time, however, Joe is able to bypass the obstacle by commandeering Rictus Erectus' personal vehicle, the Bigfoot; with Rictus and a small party of War Boys in tow, he assaults the Rig head on - only declining a chance to shoot Furiosa when his favourite wife, the heavily-pregnant Angharad, shields her.

After Nux once again tries and fails to gain Joe's approval in a botched attempt at capturing the rig (succeeding only in tripping himself up and losing one of Joe's prized revolvers in the process), he resorts to harpooning the Rig's steering wheel in an attempt to reel Furiosa in. Angharad is able to detatch the harpoon chain with a pair of bolt cutters, but in the ensuing chaos, she tumbles off the War Rig and directly into the path of the oncoming Bigfoot; though Joe swerves to avoid her, he succeeds only in crashing the car and mortally wounding his most valuable possession.

That evening, with the Rig well out of reach and the Bullet Farmer pursuing it through the marshland, Angharad dies of her injuries. Apparently undismayed, Immortan Joe has the Organic Mechanic perform an emergency c-section in an attempt to save the baby - only to find that the baby is already dead. To Joe's further disappointment, the dead child was exactly the heir he had been hoping for: male, disease-free, perfect in every way.

With the Bullet Farmer dead and Nux having been persuaded to join Furiosa, the Rig is apparently out of Joe's reach, allowing the narrative to temporarily leave him behind. However, around this time, deleted scenes feature him torturing Miss Giddy almost to death, before ordering his War Boys to spread out across the wastes in search of Furiosa - leaving the mortally-wounded Giddy behind with Angharad's corpse, to be devoured by crows.

After their plans to seek out the Green Place fail, Max and Furiosa hit upon a more audacious plan to claim Immortan Joe's own Citadel. Seeing the rig making its way back across the wasteland, Joe immediately realizes their plan; knowing that the Citadel has been left undefended, he orders an frantic pursuit. During the ensuing clash between Joe's convey and the War Rig, most of the War Boys are killed, the People Eater is shot dead by Joe while being used as a human shield by Max, another of the wives is recaptured, and Furiosa is severely wounded. Despite her injuries, she manages to align the War Ring with Joe's Gigahorse and clamber aboard.

Lowering the window to shoot Furiosa, Joe is stymied one last time when Toast, the recaptured wife, tries to wrestle the gun out of his hands. Enraged, he viciously pistol-whips Toast across the face - only for Furiosa to seize the opportunity to pounce: hooking a chain to Joe's skull mask, she flings the other end of the chain under one of the Gigahorse's tires, ripping off his mask and taking most of Joe's face with it - killing him instantly.

In a final insult, his corpse is brought back to the Citadel on the hood of the Gigahorse to displayed before his stunned followers, ending both his pretensions of immortality and his kingdom.