Aside from their metahuman abilities and unusual gadgetry, most of The Flash’s villains are easy to show on screen since they’re normal looking humans. In the case of Gorilla Grodd, it’s much more difficult to show a super-intelligent, telepathic and bloodthirsty gorilla wreaking havoc on a TV screen. However, despite the technical difficulties of including him, The Flash won’t be shying away from pitting the insane primate against the Scarlet Speedster. Fans caught a glimpse of a pre-powered Grodd earlier this season, and later this year we’ll get to see the gorilla in all his glory!
This past Sunday, in honor of co-developer Geoff John’s 42nd birthday, executive producer Andrew Kreisberg sent out a tweet teasing the progress the show is making towards Grodd being fully realized on the small screen.
Minutes later he sent down another short tweet that included the hashtag #Groddiscoming. While a precise date wasn’t given for Grodd’s next appearance, it sounds like the show is prepping him to show up near the end of Season 1. While they’re not quite up to movie standards, The Flash’s special effects with the titular protagonist’s speed, the other metahuman powers and variety of unusual phenomenon look impressive for a TV budget. Grodd was played in his first appearance by stuntman Simon Burnett, although it wasn’t revealed whether Burnett simply provided Grodd’s grunts or was physically playing him in a gorilla suit. With the visual effects advisor Armen V. Kevorkian and his crew hard at work, it sounds like Grodd will primarily be a CGI creation, and another actor will be recruited to voice him.
Grodd briefly appeared in the last minutes of the episode “Plastique.” Flashing back five years, viewers learned that he was originally meant to be a test subject in an experiment involving mental abilities being used for telepathic interrogations. However, Harrison Wells refused to let General Wade Eiling (the same man hunting Plastique in the present day) take Grodd to be experimented on, minutes later telling the gorilla that he had other plans for him. There was also the scene in the pilot where Barry and Wells passed by a mangled cage with Grodd’s nameplate next to it, implying that the gorilla had escaped at some point. Like every other strange occurrence in Central City, it probably had something to do with that pesky particle accelerator explosion.
Currently the Reverse-Flash is the show’s primary antagonist, but Grodd is a big enough villain that he could fill the same role in Season 2. Not only is he a powerhouse physically, but he can control the minds of almost anyone. A gigantic, talking gorilla with enhanced strength and mind control powers…yeah, the VFX crew definitely has their work cut out for them.
You can catch The Flash Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.