Lightyear: What Emperor Zurg Looks Like Without His Helmet

Emperor Zurg will reappear in 
Lightyear as Buzz’s archenemy, but what the
Toy Story villain looks like under his helmet has long been the subject of speculation. Zurg was first mentioned in 
Toy Story but doesn’t physically appear until 
Toy Story 2. His most memorable moment comes when the movie parodies 
The Empire Strikes Back as, like Darth Vader does to Luke Skywalker, Zurg reveals he is Buzz’s father.,The similarities that Emperor Zurg shares with Darth Vader do not stop there, as his appearance is clearly a purple take on the Dark Lord’s iconic look. Zurg and Vader both wear classic, villainous capes, and have helmets with red-eye lenses and a prominent, triangular mouth grill. But while Vader’s true form under the mask was revealed in
Return of the Jedi, the identity of Zurg is still a mystery in the 
Toy Story franchise.,Related: Lightyear Has Two Near-Impossible Toy Story Franchise Standards To Match,One original concept for Emperor Zurg shows him as a tiny alien inside the imposing purple suit. A rare sketch of what this version of Zurg would have looked like (below, bottom left) comes from the collector’s edition of Disney Pixar’s Toy Story: The Sketchbooks Series, which was limited to 2500 copies. Zurg would have been the typical Sci-Fi “little man in a can”, a trope that has been used in other popular franchises, including 
Who‘s Daleks and 
Men In Black‘s Arquillians. An alternate universe version of Emperor Zurg appeared in the 
Buzz Lightyear of Star Command cartoon series, where beneath the mask is an evil Buzz Lightyear. But in the upcoming 
Lightyear, it’s unknown what Zurg will look like under the helmet.,In the trailer for 
Lightyear, Emperor Zurg appears to be mechanical with Buzz describing him as ”
a massive robot“. Zurg’s regal robes and cape from the original 
Toy Story series have been replaced by a giant metal suit that towers over the much shorter Buzz. Although the Gundam-like redesign makes him look threatening, it raises questions about Emperor Zurg’s origins and if he is Buzz Lightyear’s father.,Emperor Zurg’s species has long been a topic of debate, but there is canonical evidence that proves he is not a robot. 
Buzz Lightyear of Star Command features several examples that show Zurg must be some sort of organic alien, given he requests water, eats food, and uses the restroom. However, the Zurg that appears in 
Lightyear could deviate away from the established Buzz Lightyear canon given it is set up as a “real-life” origin story for the action figures.,Pixar may revisit its original concept art and make Emperor Zurg a small alien who operates the robotic suit shown in the
Lightyear trailer. Alternatively, he could be an alien that more closely resembles Buzz and remotely controls the giant robot, which would allow 
Lightyear to crossover with
Toy Story by continuing Zurg’s claim that he is Buzz’s father. Or, Pixar could keep up with their history of referencing 
Star Wars by turning Zurg into a General Grievous-like cyborg, making him an alien-robot hybrid. The new look for Emperor Zurg in 
Lightyear is refreshing and intriguing, but what he looks like underneath may continue to be a mystery.,Next: Toy Story Theory Explains Real Reason Buzz Lightyear Freezes Around Humans