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- "Jenova was a Calamity that fell from the sky a long, long time ago, and tried to destroy the planet..."
- —Marlene Wallace
Jenova (ジェノバ, Jenoba) is an alien life-form in Final Fantasy VII. She also appears in a retelling of a section of the game in the animated film Last Order -Final Fantasy VII-, and in flashbacks in the movie Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children. Jenova serves as one of the primary antagonists in the world of Final Fantasy VII, and experiments on her cells have produced many of the other antagonists as well, including Sephiroth.
Throughout Final Fantasy VII, Jenova is often referred to as "she", though Ifalna calls Jenova "he" (or "it" in the PC version). Jenova appears to be female form and is said to be the "mother" of Sephiroth. She is called the "Calamity from the Skies" or "Heaven's Dark Harbinger" by the Cetra.
Jenova's genetic structure is a two-way conduit. She can both take in the traits of her prey, and also insert her own genes to turn other organisms into insane monsters. Once Jenova lands upon a new planet, she will instinctively begin to destroy every form of life she finds. Jenova was able to absorb the memories and form of her prey, hiding as their loved ones to destroy them.
As stated in Professor Hojo's Jenova Reunion Theory, once the cells of Jenova have been separated from the main body, they will try to return back to her. If they are inside a host body, they can influence its mind and body so that it moves to the Reunion — sometimes so extremely that the host organism can be killed in the process. For an unknown reason, organisms affected by Jenova often grow a single wing which is capable of flight. This is particularly odd since Jenova herself is never shown to have any wings. Their pupils also are changed into a cat-like slit, though the rest of the eye remains unchanged.
Once Jenova has completely destroyed a planet, she uses it as a vessel for her to travel through the cosmos to the next unlucky world. This constant destruction may have been going for millions of years before the beginning of Final Fantasy VII. Her age is unknown, but since Jenova can lay dormant for thousands of years, if needed, she very well might be older than the Planet itself.
Approximately two thousand years before the main events of the game, Jenova landed on the Planet, having traveled through space on a meteor. This fall from the heavens created a giant wound on the Planet's surface that would later come to be known as the "Northern Crater." After her arrival, Jenova emerged from the Crater and approached the Cetra, using her mimic abilities to glean the memories and emotions of the Cetra. Those who were taken victim of Jenova were infected with Jenova's cells and mutated into monsters. Jenova would then take the form of the fallen Cetra, and so get close enough to destroy their loved ones.
Quickly, Jenova was able to destroy most of the Cetra civilization. Their daughter race, the humans, hid from Jenova while the Cetra were nearly wiped out. The few Cetra who had survived banded together to defeat Jenova and quarantined her inside the Northern Crater, where it would lie dormant there for thousands of years. Despite their victory over the "Calamity from the Skies", the Cetra civilization was lost, and their numbers dwindled down to almost nothing while humans spread over the planet. As time wore on, humanity forgot about Jenova and the Ancients fell into legend.
- Bài viết chính: Jenova Project
Two thousand years after Jenova's first fall onto the Planet, all memory of Jenova had faded. The Shinra Electric Power Company now ruled the Planet, using their Mako energy for great power. However, they were ever looking for a more efficient way to harvest Mako. So they looked back onto the legends of the Ancients, and thought that whatever remains of those lost people might be a useful tool. Shinra scientists and excavators wandered the entire Planet, looking for some remnant of those people.
Approximately 30 years before the main events of the game began, Professor Gast Faremis excavated the creature and mistakenly identified it as a Cetra. Thus began the Jenova Project — an effort by a number of Shinra scientists to take Jenova's cells and create a human hybrid with her to produce super-soldiers with Jenova's powers. One of fruits of this labor was SOLDIER, an elite military force that had greatly-expanded abilities thanks to being infused with Mako laced with Jenova's cells. Sephiroth, Genesis Rhapsodos, and Angeal Hewley were all born from the Project. Shinra would continue to use Jenova and SOLDIER to build their army, and Jenova was kept inside the Mako Reactor at Nibelheim.
Sephiroth, the ultimate SOLDIER who was directly infused with Jenova's cells while still inside his biological mother, was not told of his role in the Jenova Project. All his biological father, Professor Hojo, told Sephiroth as a boy was that his mother's name was "Jenova" as well as that she died from giving birth to him.
Many years later, Sephiroth came to the Nibelheim Reactor along with Zack Fair and Cloud Strife, only to find the Reactor filled with Mako-infused mutants. These were failed versions of experiments similar to the ones used to produce him. Behind the pods containing the mutants was a door with the inscription "Jenova," leading Sephiroth to suspect the connection, that he might be like the mutants. The strain of these discoveries drove Sephiroth insane, and thus he went down into the Shinra Mansion to read all he could about the Jenova Project.
Believing himself to be the descendant of the Ancients whom the humans had "betrayed," Sephiroth went on an angry killing spree. All of Nibelheim was burned to the ground, and Sephiroth went up to the Reactor to get his "mother". However, thanks to Cloud mortally wounding him, Sephiroth could only take Jenova's head with him as Sephiroth and the head of Jenova both fell into the Lifestream below the Reactor. There, Sephiroth and Jenova joined together their wills, becoming as one, and sealed himself away in the Northern Crater with his plan to take over the Planet.
Shinra forces took over the Reactor, and used Cloud and Zack as a part of Professor Hojo's newest experiment to test his Jenova Reunion Theory. Several others test subjects became so infected with Jenova that they would become the Sephiroth Clones, a group of fanatics who served Sephiroth beyond even their own lives. What remained of Jenova was taken to Midgar and placed inside Hojo's lab in Shinra Headquarters.
In Sephiroth's Formsửa
Four years later, the remains of Jenova housed in Shinra Headquarters morphed into the shape of Sephiroth, and massacred many people in the Shinra building including President Shinra. In the wake of the massacre, Cloud and his party were set free from their cells. From there Jenova escaped into the outside world.
Cloud Strife and his party now chased Jenova/Sephiroth across the Planet, not knowing that what they were chasing was actually Jenova, not Sephiroth. The obvious reason for Cloud following Sephiroth was to get revenge for the destruction of Nibelheim, but on some level Cloud was being controlled by the Jenova Cells inside him. Several times the cells took complete control of Cloud, and made him mentally unstable. Sephiroth used his control of Cloud to make his rival give him the Black Materia.
As the party followed Jenova/Sephiroth's trail, they ran into parts of Jenova that Sephiroth was using to keep them from catching up with him and discovering the truth. Jenova∙BIRTH was fought on the Cargo Ship. The second battle was with Jenova∙LIFE after Sephiroth had murdered the last Cetra, Aerith Gainsborough. Though Sephiroth is seen and taunts the party, Jenova is merely a vessel for his will. This can be seen after the battle with Jenova LIFE, when Sephiroth's word said to come from Jenova in the text box. A third battle with Jenova occurred in the Whirlwind Maze with Jenova∙DEATH. All three of these bosses are pallet swaps of each other.
The Reunion of all of the Sephiroth Clones took place at the Northern Crater. However of the dozens that had started out to return to Sephiroth, only Cloud still lived. Cloud handed the real Sephiroth, crystallized in hibernation, the Black Materia so that Meteor could be summoned. Sephiroth's plan was to create a wound so great into the Planet's surface that the Lifestream would have to be summoned to heal it. That is when Sephiroth would take control of the entire Planet. Meteor now loomed in the skies over the Planet, only three days were left until it crashed.
Cloud Strife would recover and ultimately throw off Sephiroth's influence. Together with his party, they went down into the Northern Crater to defeat Sephiroth. Just before the final battle with him, they fight with Jenova∙SYNTHESIS, a form of Jenova composed of all remaining Jenova cells. Once this last form of Jenova is beaten, a heavily-mutated Sephiroth is fought and defeated. Meteor still hits and demolishes most of Midgar, but with help from the Lifestream and Holy, it did not destroy the world. Sephiroth and Jenova fail to conquer the world.
Jenova continued to survive. In fact, her destruction actually allowed her cells to spread around the entire planet, infecting thousands who came into contact with them. Her cells manifested as the plague Geostigma, which was caused when the human body overcompensated to try to eliminate her cells — so that the victim would not become just another Jenova puppet — leading to the development of sores and scars. Geostigma was contracted by those who came into contact with the Lifestream that emerged to fight Meteor. Two years after the fall of Meteor, in Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, the remains of Jenova are found by the Turks inside the Northern Crater. The three Remnants of Sephiroth, Loz, Yazoo, and Kadaj all hunt for their "mother" so that they have a second Reunion to revive Sephiroth. The remnants search throughout Edge and demand that Rufus Shinra hand over Jenova.
Only Kadaj manages to reach Jenova's remains, and with it resurrects Sephiroth. During his fight with Cloud, Sephiroth tells his rival that his plan is to take control of the Planet, and use it as a vessel to bring destruction to the entire universe - just like Jenova had done before landing on the Planet. However, Sephiroth is again defeated. Aerith's Great Gospel brings a healing rain down upon Midgar and Edge, healing those who suffered from Geostigma. Due to Jenova's high adaptability and previous ability to survive, whether or not this is the final end of Jenova remains to be seen.
Although in the film Jenova's remains are explicitly stated as "Jenova's head", Tetsuya Nomura has stated that the remains are not her head and are merely a few random clusters of her cells. However, something was needed to call them, and the term "head" stuck.
According to the Ultimania Omega, in an early version of Final Fantasy VII's game script, the fact that the party was chasing Jenova rather than Sephiroth was made much more clear. During the party's confrontation with Jenova in Sephiroth's form on the Cargo Ship, "Sephiroth" opens up his cape to shoot out a piece of Jenova, her hand. The Sephiroth Clones were not individual people infected with Jenova's Cells, but rather pieces of her floating in the air hiding under cloaks in the shape of people. Each piece was explicitly named to be either her hand, or thumb, or heart. This is why Cloud refers to Jenova BIRTH as the "arm" of Jenova upon its defeat. There were also two more boss fights: one happening between Cosmo Canyon and Nibelheim, and one in the Temple of the Ancients. It has also been suggested from the material present in the Ultimania Omega, that rather than there being more than one Black Cape, there was just one, Jenova, who was cutting off bits of her body as she journeyed towards Sephiroth, until finally she is just a heart. In the original version of the events the party would catch up with the Black Cape in the Whirlwind Maze, and the figure would remove the hood to show that it has no face, and then take off the cloak to show it is nothing but Jenova's heart floating midair, the final piece, which would then transform into a monster.
Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega goes further to reveal that, in fact, in the game's early plans, Jenova wasn't an extraterrestrial being, but rather, a certain region of the human brain, or genes. The name "Jenova" was originally supposed to have originated from a book written by the Ancients. The element "Jenova" wasn't meant to surface under normal conditions, but rarely, people were born in whom "Jenova" awakened naturally. The Jenova element could also have been awakened through artificial means, by exposing the person to mako energy. The book of Jenova was said to have been written by the Ancients and known in the legends as both the "Book of God" and the "Book of the Devil", detailing everything unknown of the human brain (or genes).
"Thaumaturge" was a name given to those whose Jenova had awakened. The name was used to denote those with special senses ordinary humans lack, regardless whether the abilities were innate (Aeris) or acquired (Sephiroth). Thaumaturge's abilities varied, but they all shared a common ability to be drawn to and sense one another. Those especially skilled were even sensitive to the thoughts of others. For example, the Turks were planned to be experts at searching out the Thaumaturge.
Jenova has two signature soundtracks in Final Fantasy VII. One is "J-E-N-O-V-A", which is heard in fights with Jenova-BIRTH and Jenova-DEATH, in the fight against Hojo, and also in the stairway at the end of the game. The second track is "Jenova Absolute", which is heard during the fight with Jenova-SYNTHESIS.
Jenova's name is a portmanteau of "Jehovah" and "Nova". "Jehovah" is the true Christian name for the Judeo-Christian God, while "Nova" is from the Latin feminine adjective for "New." Thus, Jenova's name means "New God," a point of symbolic significance.
Additionally, a nova is a cataclysmic nuclear explosion of enormous proportions caused by the accretion of hydrogen onto the surface of a white dwarf star. Given Jenova's association with planetary and universal themes, this may or may not be a coincidence.
- Jenova only has a single line of dialogue throughout the entire Compilation. The line comes directly after the party defeats Jenova LIFE, and she says "Beacause, you are......a puppet" to Cloud. This is the only line of dialogue in the entire game credited to Jenova herself. The line itself misspells the word "because".
- If one looks closely at the plaque on Jenova's head in the original Final Fantasy VII, the following text is visible:
- "MADE IN HONG KONG"
- "ALL RIGHTS RESERVED 1996"
- "SQUER COMPANY LIMITED"
- In addition to the above, however, it should be noted that in Last Order and Advent Children, the plaque reads differently. In Last Order, it reads:
- "STRICT SECRECY"
- "SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY SECTION"
- "SHIN-RA COMPANY LIMITED"
- ↑ http://thelifestream.net/final-fantasy-vii/4469/early-material-files-worldview-terminology-p-523-525-of-the-final-fantasy-vii-ultimania-omega/2/