Things are heating up in the world of Taika Waititi’s Thor: Love and Thunder. First, Jamie Alexander will return as Sif. Beyond that, the Disney Investor Day presentation revealed that Christian Bale will be playing the villainous Gorr the God Butcher. Granted, this character might not be an immediately recognizable rogue to casual comics fans. But he is a terrifying baddie with a very interesting connection to Venom and the symbiote. Here’s a little background on Gorr.
The origins of Gorr the God Butcher
Gorr was first introduced in 2013’s Thor: God of Thunder #2. The intriguing arc from Jason Aaron, Esad Ribic, Ive Svorcina, and Joe Sabino could hint at the plot of Waititi’s film. In Thor: God of Thunder, there are three Thors in three different timelines. A young Thor of the past contends with a dead goddess. Thor of the present discovers “the home of alien gods turned into an abattoir.” Finally, ancient Thor of the future is Asgard’s final bastion against a horde of monsters.
In the second issue of the series, we meet Gorr: a truly terrifying and high-fantasy sort of villain. In that same issue, we learn that all three iterations of Thor are battling Gorr and his minions. Gorr has an astonishing and deadly power set, which is weirdly connected to both Spider-lore and one of the Fantastic Four’s biggest villains.
What kind of threat does he pose to Thor?
Well, his name is probably a good clue. Gorr can kill gods without a second thought. He wields a weapon known as All-Black the Necrosword. In the current continuity, the sword was created by Knull, a primordial deity who was also the creator of the symbiotes. You know, the alien creatures who were first spotted as Spider-Man’s black suit and later became Venom. That’s why Gorr’s powers and the god-killing sword might remind you of the famed villain. His cloak of tendrils can kill any deity—including Asgardians—and his shifting obsidian sword can do the same. It’s yet to be seen whether or not Marvel introduces this character as a means of bringing the symbiote into their world.
How likely are we to see a comics-accurate version of the character on screen?
Taika isn’t afraid of doing weird stuff. It’s part of what made Thor: Ragnarok the best Thor movie. Gorr is a truly fantastical monster with a prehensile cape (that moves of its own accord, similar to what we’ve seen in Dr. Strange) and a skeletal face. The most exciting thing here is the sword, though. Once Thor even used it to fight Galactus! With Jane Foster likely holding onto Mjölnir and the Fantastic Four on their way, we expect Thor will eventually end up with a god-killing sword of his own.
Where would Gorr fit into the MCU?
With Thor out and about in space alongside the Guardians of the Galaxy, there are really no limits to how or where Gorr could fit in. In the comics, we see him at three different periods in time, including after the decimation of a line of alien gods. Perhaps Thor comes across him there. Maybe he’ll be hunting down the monster to stop him—which he does in the comics after noticing a series of missing gods—which could be why MCU Jane needs to take up the Mighty Thor mantle. There’s also the matter of his God Butcher minions. Their existence means that Thor will likely not have just one god killer to worry about.
Seeing as Marvel cast Bale, it’s likely that Gorr will have a meaty role whichever route they choose.