Zi Shou, also known as Emperor Zhou, was the father of Wu Geng, older brother of Zi Yu and husband of Da Ji, as well as the last emperor of Shang. He led a human rebellion against the gods and was ultimately killed by Tian.
Zi Shou is a tall man and of a muscular build similar to that of his younger brother. Unlike Zi Yu, his hair is black and appears more wild, despite living in a palace. When we see him in the beginning, he wore a long, open robe of black and gold tied with a white sash around his waist.
During his battle against the gods, he donned on a special armor that Wu Geng never saw. On his torso, he had on a black, sleeveless cuirass designed with red edges that created a feather-like pattern down to his waist, which had on a red belt. On his lower body, he wore a black, metallic tasset with three red stripes on his right and left leg and it extended to the top of his knee.
Ever since he was a young boy, Shou hated being ruled by the gods and he questioned his father why they were still being dominated by them. However, he was not satisfied with his father's answer and declared he will meet Tian and demand humans' freedom . When he is the emperor and Xuan Chai comes to him so that he can fulfill requests for the gods (so that they can reaffirm their faith in him), Shou willingly burned their scroll, openly defying the Gods in front of his court. His distaste for the Gods' rule is once again reaffirmed with a conversation with Zi Yu, stating that he is doing the right thing as king by defying their rule so openly (sparing his people from enslavement to a higher power). A strong-minded individual, Zi Shou was always disciplined and even took it upon himself to live with slaves despite being royalty, just to be in their shoes, then deciding that all beings should be equal.
Shou did not show that he cared for Wu Geng: he once severely whipped Wu Geng in public to the point he passed out, but forcibly woke him up to whip him again , and this explicitly strained their father-son relationship. He was even reprimanded by his younger brother after Shou chastised his son while marching out to his coming death . However, Da Ji explained to Wu Geng that his father is a compassionate man and did what he did for a reason. This was the truth, because Zi Shou acknowledged Wu Geng several times beyond the grave and as he grew, Wu Geng understood that his father deeply loved him. While alive, Shou deeply respected and loved those he knew and was related to like his father, Da Ji, Zi Yu and even his men who he lead to battle against the gods.
In battle, especially against gods, Zi Shou is especially sadistic and bloodthirsty as he is shown slicing Gui Mu into pieces just to hear the great god's anguish. However, he was driving to humiliate the gods in front of the known world, in which he succeeded.
Zi Shou, being the emperor of Shang, was adept in using swords (although not as much as his brother) and was the first human to gravely harm the gods.
Endurance: Being bonded to the Immortal Phoenix, Shou had a large amount of endurance in order to allow it to soak up his energy and life force to outlast several Great Gods and ultimately, fight Tian himself even though he had incurred several injuries. He was also capable of pulling or forcing himself up when being overwhelmed even after receiving injuries that would kill an average human.
Enhanced speed: Even without releasing the Immortal Phoenix fully, he was capable of cutting Gui Mu's arms before the former could react despite the fact Shou was a long distance away.
Enhanced durability: After receiving Tian Kui's punch that exploded the former emperor's massive horse and sent him through stone, Zi Shou came out of that punch without a scratch. Although he was in pain from being hit by Zhui Ri's blade, he did not draw blood from it.
Enhanced strength: Before releasing the wings of the Phoenix, he was capable of cutting through Gui Mu, a feat that can't be accomplished by regular humans due to the gods' higher durability. After releasing his wings, he was powerful enough to physically overwhelm three Great Gods, including Tian Kui, who's known for his immense strength and durability, even among the gods.
Immortal Phoenix Armor Edit
Passed down through the generations of Shang Emperors, this suit of armor was bounded with the transcendent vigor of the Immortal Phoenix, a legendary divine beast that had only ever been defeated by Tian. Wearing it required that the Phoenix be allowed to feed on the wearer's life force. In exchange, releasing the armor's power granted the wearer a massive increase in overall strength, even allowing a mere human such as Zi Shou himself to fight evenly against three of the Great Gods of Affiliation. Eventually, with his defeat at the hands of Tian, the armor was destroyed and the Phoenix was killed and sent to the Underworld to await its rebirth.
At a young age, Zi Shou was already dreaming of overthrowing the Gods' rule and freeing humanity from oppression and slavery. However, when he brought up this idea to his father, he was sternly reprimanded. His father told him that he, too, had dreamed the same things in his youth, only to be harshly disciplined by the Great God Tian Kui. From then on, Zi Shou's father never once tried to disobey the gods again. However, these words only fueled Zi Shou's desires, and he swore to carry out the dream that his father never dared to touch.
Season 1 Edit
Rebellion against the Gods
Shou is approached by Xuan Chai to perform tribute for the Gods; he openly rebels against them and prepares for war. He saves his son from being turned
over to the enemy out of helplessness by the masses of Shang; he then reunites with Zi Yu, to do battle with the forces of Zhou and the Gods. He bursts out of Zhao Ge's gates and starts to dismantle Wu's army, before coming face to face with Tian Kui. He and his horse start to fight with Kui, though Kui ends up punching him in the stomach and into the walls; Zhou realizes that this was the God who instilled helplessness in his own father, the former king.
When the other Gods arrive, he saves his lieutenant's life from Gui Mu's Necrogen Mist by slicing the God's hand. As Gui Mu reels in pain, Zi Shou declares that he will torture and kill the Great God slowly so as to humiliate him to the highest degree in front of the world. He repeatedly cuts, slices, and hacks away at Gui Mu's body until Tian Kui reenters the fray to defend Gui Mu. Zi Shou barely defends against Tian Kui's powerful punch, ultimately being forced to reveal and activate his Immortal Phoenix Armor. With his true strength finally shown, three of the Great Gods (Fighting, Lightning, and Fire Affiliations) all attack the Shang Emperor at once in order to crush him. However, he manages to fight evenly against all three of them, shocking all the witnesses of the great battle.
It is not until Tian himself steps onto the battlefield that Zi Shou finally begins to falter. The human emperor and the gods' leader clash violently, but Tian's Divine Power: Monochrome prevails over the mightiest flames of the Immortal Phoenix Armor and Tian's serpents punch a hole through Zi Shou's chest and consume his heart, killing him almost immediately.
Following his defeat, the former emperor's corpse is hung from a stake and left to rot and be eaten by vultures so that his soul may never find rest.
He appears in Wu Geng's dreams one last time, smiling his approval to his son before disappearing forever.
Season 2 Edit
During his battle against Sage King, Zhen Chan, Zi Yu meets with his older brother one last time in a world created by the Sage King during their fight. At first, Zi Yu was seeing a vision of that world's Zi Shou, but after he realized he was in Zhen Chan's illusion, Zi Shou questioned how Zi Yu knew he was in an illusion, which hinted that it may have been Zi Shou's actual spirit . After their reunion (when Zhen Chan's technique was breaking), Zi Yu regretted that he didn't arrive early to fight against the gods with his brother in the past and apologized to him. Shou, pleased that not even Zhen Chan could control him, asks about Wu Geng and asks his younger brother to guide his son then disappears.
During and after the war, Zi Shou was despised due to the effects the war he started against the gods had on the people. Because the gods ordered that Shou's works and name as an emperor to be slandered at the time of his death, the effects lingered on thus he was recognized as a tyrannic, evil ruler.
Wu Geng defended him, exclaiming that he shouldn't have been martyred for the people of the Central Plains, citing their ingratitude.