General Erich Ludendorff was a World War I general of the Imperial German Army, an ally of the nefarious Dr. Poison, and an enemy of Wonder Woman. He gained metahuman powers by inhaling a special gas developed by Dr. Poison, who was secretly influenced by Ares into creating it. It is likely that Ares inspired Dr. Poison to enhance him, so as to create a decoy "God of War" for the Amazons and Wonder Woman to target.
Dying days of the Great War
General Ludendorff is as an extremely megalomaniacal, ambitious, ruthless and relentless individual, seeking to win World War I at any cost with Dr. Poison's chemical weapons, and not hesitating to shoot his own men or officer peers at the slightest disagreements with him, thereby being an even more sinister and malevolent militaristic supervillain than General Zod. Indeed, Lundendorff was charismatic enough as a leader to instill immense loyalty in Dr. Poison, who ultimately refused to abandon him for Steve Trevor (who was undercover, posing as a ruthless German officer interested in her). Despite being usually calm, Ludendorff occasionally displays fierce wrath and rage when frustrated, such as when confronted and thwarted by Wonder Woman's sudden arrival.
Ludendorff sadistically romanticizes war (unknowingly thus worshiping the God of War Ares), believing that it serves a purpose of bettering individuals, and claiming that it demands human sacrifices. Indeed, due to this mindset, personality and enhanced physical condition, Wonder Woman originally believed him to be Ares in disguise.
Ludendorff was also quite intelligent and well-read, notably reading quite a bit of Ancient Greek literature, and being impressed when Diana Prince quotes him an author of that era. Indeed, he was an excellent military scientist, tactician and battle strategist, scouring both himself and the Imperial German Army multiple victories during the 4-year duration of World War I, being all the more effective due to his ruthlessness, as when several other high-ranking German officers opposed his views, Ludendorff unexpectedly wiped them out on the spot with a chemical weapon, and when Wonder Woman managed to free a Belgian village from a year of German occupation on the Western Front, Ludendorff promptly wiped the village out with the same chemical weapon. His intelligence, however, was occasionally undermined by his extreme arrogance and overconfidence, with Ludendorff even going so far as to claim that even Wonder Woman, while a magnificent warrior, was no match for him. This would prove to be Ludendorff's undoing, as Wonder Woman promptly proceeded to defeat and kill him.
Lundendorff also appears to have a sadistic sense of humor, as when he has Dr. Poison kill disagreeing German officers with her extra-lethal mustard gas, Ludendorff tosses in a gas mask, gleefully laughing at the prospect of the doomed officers not knowing that the mask would be useless against the horrific gas.
Powers and Abilities
- Enhanced Metahuman Physiology: General Ludendorff inhaled regular doses of a gaseous drug developed for him by Dr. Poison (under Ares' secret tutelage), resulting in his impressive metahuman powers.
- Super Strength: General Ludendorff has incredible superhuman strength, seemingly on par with that of Wonder Woman, though she notably had still not yet reached her full potential at the time. Nonetheless, this allowed him to easily crush a pistol with his bare hand, and to go blow for blow against Wonder Woman, even briefly knocking and pinning her to the ground.
- Super Durability: General Ludendorff is incredibly durable to blunt force trauma, with him withstanding mighty blows from even Wonder Woman herself, though he could still be pierced by the Godkiller sword.
- Gifted Intelligence: General Ludendorff is quite intelligent and well-read, notably reading quite a bit of Ancient Greek literature (and being impressed when Diana Prince quotes him an author of that era), with his intellect mainly extending to his superb understanding of warfare and military science (to the point of him sadistically romanticizing war, much to Ares' delight), as well as his considerable tactical, strategic, and leadership skills.
- Expert Leader: Ludendorff, as a general of the Imperial German Army, was a highly skilled and experienced leader, having lead his troops though almost the entirely of World War I. Indeed, Lundendorff was charismatic enough as a leader to instill immense loyalty in Dr. Poison, who ultimately refused to abandon him for Steve Trevor (who was undercover, posing as a ruthless German officer interested in her).
- Expert Tactician: General Ludendorff, despite his arrogance, is an excellent tactician and battle strategist, scouring the Imperial German Army multiple victories during the 4-year duration of World War I, being all the more effective due to his ruthlessness. Ludendorff notably took over and occupied of a Belgian village (leaving Allied troops stationed at the Western Front unable to break through for almost a year, until Wonder Woman unexpectedly showed up), later fully wiped out the aforementioned village with an unexpected attack after it was freed (utilizing Dr. Poison's extra-lethal mustard gas), wiped out a group of disgruntled fellow German officers with another unexpected chemical weapon attack after they meet together, and almost succeeded in winning the war with his mustard gas-filled plane strategy (only thwarted by the last minute valiant efforts of the Wonder Men, as well as Steve Trevor's self-sacrifice).
- Bilingual: General Ludendorff, apart from his native German, also fluently spoke English (albeit with a mild German accent).
- Master Combatant: General Ludendorff is an extremely skilled hand-to-hand combatant, to the point that he managed to hold his own against Wonder Woman herself in their fight, dodging or countering many of her attacks, though he was ultimately defeated and killed by the Amazon warrior.
- Regular Drug Doses: General Ludendorff's greatest weakness is that in order to maintain his metahuman powers, he needs to inhale regular doses of Dr. Poison's gaseous drug every so often, or else they will fully wear off.
- Beings of Equal Power: General Ludendorff, when fighting beings of comparable or greater might, like Wonder Woman (even though she was not yet at her full potential), is more vulnerable, as they are powerful enough to injure and even kill Ludendorff, with Wonder Woman promptly killing him after a brief fight.
- Magic: General Ludendorff is vulnerable to magic-based attacks and weapons, so he can therefore be cut and wounded by Wonder Woman's Godkiller sword, as well as restrained by the Amazonian Lasso of Hestia (which is magically rendered unbreakable). As a result, Ludendorff is ultimately stabbed to death by the Amazonian blade.
- Arrogance: General Ludendorff's main psychological weakness is his overconfidence and arrogance (stemming from his megalomania), with him even going so far as to claim that even Wonder Woman, while a magnificent warrior, was no match for him. This would prove to be Ludendorff's undoing, as Wonder Woman promptly proceeded to defeat and kill him.
- Gaseous Drug Vials: General Ludendorff always had vials of this drug on him, in order to temporarily enhance himself whenever necessary.
- Revolver: General Ludendorff used his revolver to shoot down one of his own men when the latter began complaining.
Behind the scenes
- Erich Ludendorff was a real-life senior German military official during World War I. Unlike his film counterpart, the real Ludendorff lived another nineteen years after the war, becoming a hard-line nationalist, blaming Jews and Marxists for Germany's defeat, and advocating a "total war", of devoting Germany's entire physical and moral force against other nations. He died in 1937, less than two years before the outbreak of World War II.