Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

What Happens To Immortan Joe At The End Of Mad Max: Fury Road Is Worse Than Death

Of all the antagonists to take center-stage in the "Mad Max" franchise, Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne, one of the "Mad Max" actors you might not have known passed away) is easily among the most vile. With his intimidating breathing mask, worn yet still imposing armor, and piercing eyes, the cult leader and ruler of the Citadel is truly monstrous to look at. Worse yet, he's immoral as they come, treating the people of the Citadel like his minions and hoarding water to give out at his discretion. By the end of his first movie appearance, the behind-the-scenes trouble-plagued "Mad Max: Fury Road," he meets his demise, but not before being subject to an agonizing injury.

Over on Instagram, Odd Studio posted a Joe dummy constructed for "Fury Road," showing the villain in pretty terrible shape. For those who don't recall, Joe's time among the living is brought to an end by his former Imperator, Furiosa (Charlize Theron, who was later replaced by Anya Taylor-Joy in the role). She lodges a harpoon into his mouth, the end of which is attached to the wheel of his personal vehicle, the Gigahorse, by a chain. The wheel turns, the chain yanks the harpoon from his mouth, and Joe is left without a nose, lower jaw, and throat. It's a gruesome sight, but that makes the work of those at Odd Studio to depict it no less impressive.

Bearing in mind who Joe was in life, it's symbolic that he's injured and dies in the way he does.

Joe's manner of death carries a deeper meaning

From what has been revealed about him in comics and at the movies, Immortan Joe's rise to prominence comes largely as a result of brute force. When he's still known as Colonel Joe Moore, he takes the Citadel and becomes its new ruler, soon taking on his "Immortan" title. In time, he becomes a god-like figure, as individuals come from far and wide in the hope of getting some of the Citadel aquifer's water. He eventually ends his tenure as a warrior, utilizing his penchant for speeches and natural charisma to keep the masses under his spell. They let him get away with virtually anything, so long as they can share in the water supply.

With this in mind, the symbology of Joe's death comes into view. When his mouth and throat are torn off, he literally ceases to live, but this works in a metaphoric sense as well. His mouth is the source of his power and influence, and even if he did survive, his reign would still effectively be over without the ability to wield his greatest weapon. The fact that Furiosa is the one that does it is also worth highlighting. Throughout "Fury Road," Joe is shown to subjugate women in the worst ways, even using his five "wives" as reproductive slaves. Furiosa eventually betrays him and helps them escape the Citadel before killing him. It's a woman who takes away his mouth, a major source of his power, his "wives," one of the most prominent manifestations of said power, and his life in the ultimate act of justice.

Though it's stomach-churning to look at, Immortan Joe's manner of death is undeniably meaningful in more ways than one.