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"Hold your fire til we see a moment of weakness"

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"Are you a god?"

―Gozer the Gozerian talking to Ray Stantz[src]

Gozer, also known as Gozer the Gozerian, Gozer the Destructor, Volguus Zildrohar, Gozer the Traveler and Lord of the Sebouillia is the main antagonist of Ghostbusters movie and also appears in Ghostbusters: The Video Game. An ancient, ultra-powerful, malignant entity from another dimension who was summoned to New York City to destroy the world. Gozer was originally worshiped as a god by the Hittites, Mesopotamians, and the Sumerians around 6000 BC. Gozer is genderless (though It first appears as a female in the movie). It was worshipped by the powerful Cult of Gozer. Gozer has two trusted minions – themselves worshiped as demi-gods – that are harbingers of destruction and primary agents for Its coming: Vinz Clortho, The Keymaster and Zuul, The Gatekeeper. Gozer has visited our world twice, in 1984 and 1991, both times assuming the form of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man.




An obscure deity, Gozer the Destructor's earliest known appearance was in Mesopotamia around 6000 BC and was worshiped by both the Hittites and Mesopotamians. It rose to prominence in Sumeria thousands of years later. During that time, various cults arose to worship it and in a short time, developed their own hierarchy and system of ritual magic. By the 4th millennium B.C. the Gozer Worshipers, or "Gozerians" consisted of a large Sumerian sub-culture and was engaged in a long, protracted war with the followers of Tiamat. Eventually Gozer and its followers were defeated and Tiamat banished Gozer from this world. The first known written reference to Gozer is a brief phrase in an Egyptian legend believed to reach back to the end of the Middle Kingdom (2040-1650 B.C.). This particular chronicle, dated to approximately 1600 B.C., warns about a powerful deity of the Hyksos known as Zuul, or Gatekeeper, minion of Gozer. The menace of Gozer did not end with the passing of the Hyksos (the Egyptians overthrew their masters in 1567 B.C.). Though his worshippers remained silent for more than 3000 years, remain they did.

It was later that Gozer also became known as The Traveler; visiting multiple worlds and conquering them. During each of its manifestations in the material plane throughout history, Gozer would first gain access to a world through the coupling of two demi-god minions and heralds - the Keymaster and the Gatekeeper. Though only the names of two such minions are known to history - Vinz Clortho and Zuul - there are believed to have been others. Once the minions had opened the doorway to the new world, Gozer would allow its worshipers or a hero from that world to choose the Destructor form that Gozer would use to destroy their world.[1] During the rectification of the Vuldronaii, The Traveler came as a large and moving Torb. Then, during the third reconciliation of the last of the Meketrex Supplicants, they chose the form of a giant Sloar.[2]

Gozer had, however, not been entirely forgotten in this world and by the early 20th Century, a powerful new Cult of Gozer was active in New York City. Led by the architect and physician Ivo Shandor and including some of NYC's most powerful business leaders and power brokers. Following the end of World War I, Ivo decided that humanity was too sick to survive and throughout the 1920's he and his cult built an elaborate series of paranormal mechanisms across Manhattan with the intent of summoning Gozer back to this world and destroy it. The cult would conduct a number of bizarre Gozerian rituals on the roof of the 55 Central Park West building, which Shandor had designed as a super-conductive antenna for spiritual turbulence, the manifestation points for the Gozer's minions as well as the Gateway for Gozer itself. Also, a powerful magic called Mandala was created in order to power-up the god's newly manifested body by the spirit energy.

Despite this, Shandor was not able to bring about the end he sought and by the time that Shandor died, his efforts however were not so much in vain as premature as in 1984, the Traveler would finally come.

The Destructor's Coming


Gozer after entering our world

In 1984, the ghosts started plaguing the city, being the first sign of Mandala working, and thus the sign of Gozer's coming. First, the two minions Zuul and Vinz Clortho were sent ahead to choose their appropriate bodies to possess-and together-they would open the gate to release their master in New York. Peter discovered that Dana was being possessed by Zuul and Egon and Janine were successfully able to hold Louis; who was possessed by Vinz Clortho. During this time, a man named Walter Peck switched off the Containment Unit, releasing all the captured ghosts which started to roam around, waiting for Gozer. Unfortunately for the Ghostbusters, Vinz was able to successfully escape and locate Zuul. Though the Ghostbusters were able to make it to the building, they were too late to stop Zuul and Vinz from completing their ritual and summoning forth Gozer, transforming the bodies of Dana Barrett and Louis Tully to the Terror Dog forms of their possessors in the process.

Gozer appeared out of the Temple of Gozer in the form of a female covered in strange slime-like clothes. The Ghostbusters sent Ray in to confront Gozer first, to which Ray ordered Gozer to cease all supernatural activity. Gozer asked Ray if he was a god, then started blasting the Ghostbusters when he said no. The Ghostbusters attempted to blast Gozer, but their streams were deflected. The "Nimble, Little Minx" then vanished, causing the Ghostbusters to think they had won. But then Gozer demanded that the Ghostbusters "Choose the form of The Destructor!" - the form Gozer would assume to destroy them with. While Winston, Egon and Peter emptied their heads, Ray accidently thought of something, "...something that could never, ever possibly destroy us! Mr. Stay Puft!". But Gozer took this form of-and attacked the Ghostbusters as-a giant Stay Puft Marshmallow Man.

While the Ghostbusters burned some of Gozer's new form with their beams, it wouldn't hold the creature back for very long. The Ghostbusters then crossed the streams and forced the gate closed, causing the entire top of the building to be consumed in a powerful explosion, incinerating the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man and banishing Gozer back to its hellish realm. Zuul and Vinz Clortho went with Gozer and Dana and Louis were reverted back to their human forms. Though the Ghostbusters had saved the city, the destruction that they caused got them kicked out of business.

Ghostbusters: The Video Game

The Destructor's Second Coming
In 1991, Gozer became somewhat of a memory. He even had an entire exhibit at the New York museum devoted to him. However, he was not to be just a memory. The already undead Cult of Gozer, using their Mandala magic located in four places around the city, channeled their power in order to re-create the god without a portal. It probably took them 7 years to make Gozer's return possible. A powerful ghost outbreak took place in these four Mandala locations, being caused by spirit energy flow, which led to Gozer's re-manifestation as the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man right in the middle of Times Square.


Stay Puft Marshmallow Man as seen in Ghostbusters: The Video Game

However, this time, the god was too weak and had no minions of his own. In order to reach full power, Gozer needed more power from Mandala, and a sacrifice of a Shandor's blood. That's why he needed Ilyssa Selwyn, the direct descendant of Ivo Shandor: the man who made Gozer's comings possible. However, Gozer's returns weren't successful. The Ghostbusters team, along with their new recruit, the Rookie, battled his Destructor Form while it tried to capture Ilyssa. While original plan was to trap Gozer using the Super Slammer (a giant, car-mounted trap), the Rookie managed to do enough damage to the god's current weak form, destroying it.

The Fate of the God

Ghostbusters 35

What's left of Gozer

With Gozer defeated, Ghostbusters believed that the Cult of Gozer is to bring him back the third time. However, Ivo Shandor became disappointed in his faith, and abandoned Gozer, intending to use Mandala's energy, released ghosts and Ilyssa as the sacrifice to become a god, taking a Destructor Form himself.

Gozer's remains, in the form of a glowing skull of his female form, can be seen being held by the mayor who is possessed by the spirit of Ivo Shandor, who promptly tosses it over his back, indicating its worthlessness. This may mean that Gozer, after his second defeat, is completely destroyed or at least severely diminished.

Secondary Canon History

The Real Ghostbusters

Gozer never appears in the cartoon, but has been referred to on a few occasions.

Kenner Toys

An animated version of her face is an image used in the Kenner Ghostzapper toy weapon.

NOW Comics

In the NOW comic based on the cartoon, Egon was briefly transported to an alternate Earth where Gozer had apparently won and wiped all life from it. In one panel, graffiti reading "Gozer rules!" can be seen.

IDW Comic Series

While performing a job for Woodrow Wainwright Fraser III, the Ghostbusters went up against 2/3 of the Ghosts of Christmas. The Ghost of Christmas Future took Fraser, Peter, and Egon to a possible apocalyptic future where Gozer returned in a different Destructor form on Christmas, that of a giant talking worm with tentacles. Peter and Egon also experienced rapid aging and were approximately in their sixties. The duo was without hope as crossing the streams wouldn't be as powerful as having the entire team present. Then Egon was seemingly killed when Gozer crushed him. However, everyone was returned to the present when Peter wrangled the Ghost of Christmas Present from Fraser.

During the Infestation, an avatar of Britt coordinated a plot to capture part of Gozer's essence. She would need both the Zombies and the Ghostbusters to achieve this goal. 37 Zombies were directed to infect, and thus weaken, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. The Ghostbusters arrived and used Poltergeists to neutralize Stay Puft's necrotic double. Due to the forced split and the day's event, Stay Puft dispersed. Egon predicted that Gozer's essence would reform and the team best prepare for it. Britt secretly captured a fraction of Gozer's essence with a Ghost Trap she stole.

Months later, Gozer appeared in Ray's dream during a segment of "The Ja'nine Show," a talk show hosted by Janine Melnitz. Gozer was in the audience and asked Ray if he was a god. When Ray answered "Yes," Gozer blasted Ray and he found himself hanging over the edge of the Shandor Building roof. The next day, Idulnas communicated with the essence of Gozer on an observation deck at the Empire State Building. Apparently, Gozer ordered Idulnas to quickly procure the Selector, Ray Stantz, for the rite of change and allow for a new Destructor Form to be chosen. Idulnas attempted to influence Ray by clocking him. However, Ray's Spirit Guide reached Ray first and told him to only think about the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Ray complied and Gozer manifested, but still as Stay Puft. Angered by the turn of events, Idulnas teleported away and left the Ghostbusters to deal with Gozer. While Egon, Peter, and Winston blasted away, Ray took the completed and untested Megatrap with him down to Room 2206. Ray then held the trap outside a window underneath Stay Puft and captured all of Gozer's essence that could be trapped.

Powers and Abilities

Gozer the Gozerian is usually reputed, with few exceptions, to be the most powerful being the Ghostbusters have ever faced. It displayed an extraordinary array of abilities including dimensional travel, shape-changing, telepathy, great agility and stamina, lightning blasts, invisibility, intangibility, pyrokinesis and weather control. In fact, its mere entering Earth's dimension caused increases in paranormal activity and the disruption of natural forces (the storm clouds and earthquake before the battle).

However, Gozer does have limitations and weaknesses (as few as they may be); primarily, the Gozerian Temple atop the Shandor apartment building was Its means on entering Earth's dimension. In fact, by the time the Ghostbusters crossed the streams, Gozer had still NOT fully entered our world and must therefor create a form chosen by man as an irony. Because of its limited time on Earth, Gozer's true power is not known. Had the Ghostbusters delayed, Gozer might have become too powerful for Total Protonic Reversal to stop it. This remains pure conjecture and speculation. Thankfully, the Ghostbusters did destroy the temple and banish Gozer back to its own universe. During his second coming, it had no portals to transport him fully, so in his new (but still Stay Puft) form, he was relatively weak and required a lot more power to absorb to become a true being he is supposed to be. Because of that, the Ghostbusters managed to finally destroy him.


Primary Canon

Secondary Canon


  • In the original premise for the movie, Gozer was originally conceived as taking the form of Ivo Shandor, the builder of Gozer's temple. Ivo was to be played by Paul Reubens and desribed as being a kindly looking man in a nondescript suit and tie. Possibly an appearance for having first been introduced to the Earth realm during the 1920s. (Which, in turn, may have also been the inspiration for Peter's example describing Gozer returning in the form of FBI director J. Edgar Hoover)
  • In the August 5, 1983 draft of the movie script, Gozer had one more title, "Scourge of the Glethestements," [11] Glethestements being the religious text of the Sebouillia.
  • Because Gozer is referred as genderless, it (she) speaks with an androgynous voice neither feminine nor masculine but a combination of the two.
  • In Ghostbusters: The Video Game, during the Central Park Cemetery Level (Realistic Version), Ray mentions the possibility that Gozer is only able to create one Destructor form per dimension and therefore will only be able to manifest as the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man in this dimension. [12] [13]
  • Both times Gozer was defeated, the remains of his Stay Puft Marshmallow Man form rained all over New York and covered it in melted marshmallows.
  • In Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Stylized Version), Ivo Shandor and Stay Puft Marshmallow Man's Tobin's Summaries indicate Gozer came to power around 4000 B.C. in Sumeria.
  • In the online preview of Ghostbusters Issue #6, magnified, inside the newspaper, Gozer's "Choose or Perish" quote from Ghostbusters is embedded.


  1. Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Realistic Versions)
  2. Ghostbusters
  3. Egon Spengler (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "The Collect Call of Cathulhu" (1986) (DVD ts. 05:57-06:00). Time Life Entertainment. Egon says: "Cathulhu makes Gozer look like Little Mary Sunshine."
  4. Winston Zeddemore (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "Janine Melnitz, Ghostbuster " (1986) (DVD ts. 06:21-06:25). Time Life Entertainment. Winston says: "This is as bad as when Gozer was around."
  5. Egon Spengler (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "Janine Melnitz, Ghostbuster " (1986) (DVD ts. 06:29-06:30). Time Life Entertainment. Egon says: "No. None of the readings indicate a return of Gozer."
  6. Egon Spengler (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "Janine Melnitz, Ghostbuster " (1986) (DVD ts. 18:54-18:56). Time Life Entertainment. Egon says: "Proteus is one of the primal gods like Gozer."
  7. Peter Venkman (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "The Devil in the Deep" (1986) (DVD ts. 02:47-02:48). Time Life Entertainment. Peter says: "Did I tell you about Gozer? There was a nut."
  8. Egon Spengler (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "The Revenge of Murray the Mantis" (1986) (DVD ts. 10:07-10:10). Time Life Entertainment. Egon says: "He could have a life energy as high as Gozer's."
  9. Winston Zeddemore, Janine Melnitz (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "Captain Steel Saves the Day " (1986) (DVD ts. 01:34-01:35, 01:40-01:41). Time Life Entertainment. Winston says: "Gozer's back, right?", "Janine says: "Worse than Gozer?"
  10. Egon Spengler (2009).The Real Ghostbusters- "The Haunting of Heck House" (1990) (DVD ts. 03:54-03:58). Time Life Entertainment. "Egon says: "We faced Demons, Monsters, Gozer, Multi-Dimensional Invasions..."
  11. Page 90 of August 5, 1983 Draft of "Ghostbusters" via Spook Central
  12. GBTVGReferenceGozerRV01.jpg
  13. GBTVGReferenceGozerRV02.jpg

See Also



Primary Canon

Secondary Canon

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