Staff Sergeant Michael Nantz
|Portrayed by||Aaron Eckhart|
Michael Nantz was a United States Marine Staff Sergeant for 20 years. He lost many men under his last deployment and planned on retiring from duty until he was called into battle against a deadly alien attack on Los Angeles, the Battle of Los Angeles.
Not much is known about Nantz's early life or the beginning of his career, but he was a very skilled US Marine. In his last deployment before the unexpected Battle of Los Angeles, he lost many men. He planned on retiring, but soon found himself being called back to the war to fight against an invasion of Los Angeles led by extraterrestrials who were trying to take Earth's resources. Before he left to fight against the invaders, he was seen exercising on the beach and then driving in his Mustang listening to California Love.
Beginning of the Battle of Los Angeles and Leadership of the PlatoonEdit
Nantz went into the battle leading a platoon of men from "E" Company, 2nd Battalion 5th Marines alongside the Platoon Commander, 2nd Lieutenant William Martinez. Their mission was to rescue innocent civilians from a LAPD police station within three hours. If they did not complete the mission within the time-limit, they would all be killed when the U.S. Air Force would arrive to bomb the city in an effort to kill the extraterrestrials. They were ambushed many times by the aliens and lost many men. While in the midst of the fighting, the platoon encountered a group of U.S. Army Soldiers from the 40th Infantry Division. One of the many was a Air Force Intelligence Technical Sergeant known as Elena Santos. When her division was attacked, she was the only one able to escape.
The platoon joined forces with Santos and the others and reached the police station in time. They found five civilians hiding inside the building, terrified. A helicopter then arrived to take the injured Marines. As it was taking off, an alien air unit attacked it and destroyed it. The Marines then found one of the city's invaders, wounded, and attempted to find it's weaknesses. One of the civilians, Michele, who was a veterinarian, helped them out, and Nantz and the others discovered that the creature had a weak spot in the torso. They also discovered some of the aliens' military tactics. They learned that the alien attack aircraft were remote-controlled drones and that the aliens were tracking them through their radio communications.
The Marines believed that there was a control center that, if destroyed, would eliminate all control of the drones, which would open enemy forces to air attack. When the Marines began an evacuation and took control of a bus, they were attacked while driving on a freeway. The Marines began to help the civilians get off of the freeway. One of the civilians (whose name was Joe Rincon) was severely injured by one of he aliens when he fired on them, and the Marines had to get him to safety. Martinez, meanwhile, put Nantz in charge of his platoon. Martinez was also wounded and sacrificed himself, despite his longing to return home to his pregnant wife, by detonating C-4 explosives inside the bus to destroy an enemy unit.
Death of a Hero and Rise Against the ExtraterrestrialsEdit
Nantz led the remaining members of the platoon and the civilians to safety in a convenience store to rest. The team began to wait for the bombing to begin after learning that the aliens' purpose on Earth was to take the water supply, which they used as fuel. Nantz and the others escaped to the FOB after the bombing did no begin. They discovered that the aliens had already destroyed the FOB. They decided to get to another excavation point so they could escape in a helicopter. Before they left, Joe Rincon died, despite great care given to him. His son, Hector, was saddened by this. Nantz told him that it was alright, but he had to be strong. This caused one of the members of the platoon, Corporal Jason Lockett, to lack faith in Nantz's ability to lead. He reassured him, however, and took the platoon and civilians to the extraction point.
As they were evacuating, Nantz spotted a large, black spot on the ground that he believed to be the command center, hidden underground. He left the helicopter in an effort to go in and destroy it. The platoon followed him, leaving the civilians up in the helicopter.
Going underground, the Marines confirmed the presence of a large alien vessel. They returned to the surface and succeeded in calling in a missile strike using laser designators. However, the command center remained intact and rose from the ground. The Marines fought the alien forces as more missiles were launched at the hovering command center, and eventually they destroyed it. This disabled the alien aircraft in the area, forcing the alien ground forces to retreat.
Soon after, the team was extracted to a temporary base in the Mojave Desert, where they were greeted as heroes for their outstanding bravery. All other cities under attack now planned to emulate their strategy, destroying the alien command center in each city. More forces were being sent to Los Angeles to finish off the aliens there. Despite orders to rest, Nantz and the platoon instead rejoined the fight.