Gorilla Grodd

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Gorilla Grodd is a character appearing in DC Comics, primarily as an archenemy of The Flash.


character biography

Gorilla Grodd is a hyper-intelligent telepathy|telepathic supervillain with the power to mind control|control the minds of others. At one time he was nothing more than an average ape, but after an alien spacecraft crashed in his African home, Grodd and his troop were imbued with super-intelligence by the ship's pilot. Grodd and fellow gorilla Solovar also developed telepathic and psychokinesis|telekinetic powers. Taking the alien as their leader, the gorillas constructed a super advanced home named Gorilla City. The gorillas lived in peace until their home was discovered by prying explorers. Grodd forced one of the explorers to kill the alien, and took over Gorilla City, planning to take the world next. Solovar telepathically contacted Barry Allen to warn him of the evil gorilla's plans, and Grodd was defeated. However, the villain would return again and again to plague the Flash and his allies.

Grodd's psionic abilities allow him to place other beings under his mental control. Grodd can also project mental attack beams and transfer his consciousness into other bodies. Moreover, he possesses great physical strength far exceeding that of an ordinary gorilla. He is a scientific genius who has mastered Gorilla City's advanced technology and who has created many incredible inventions of his own.

In a confrontation with Wally West, Grodd increased the brain power of most of the animals in Central City. He hoped to endanger the lives of all the humans, but this plan partly backfired because some of the pets were too loyal.

Grodd's plans were defeated by the Flash with the assistance of the Pied Piper, Vixen, and Rex the Wonder Dog.

At one point, the immortal villain Vandal Savage kidnapped Titans member Omen and used her to formulate the perfect team of adversaries for the Teen Titans. Savage approached Grodd, offering him membership in this new anti-Titans group, Tartarus. Savage sweetened the offer with promises of power and immortality. Grodd joined Tartarus on their mission to synthesize the immortal blood of the HIVE Mistress, Addie Kane. Savage sought to create a serum that would grant immortality. Their schemes were thwarted when the Titans intervened, and Tartarus retreated. Tempest later led a rescue mission to save Omen from Savage. During the rescue attempt, Tartarus battled the Titans, but collapsed upon itself due to each member having a different agenda. This was because Omen had purposely chosen members who wouldn't work well together when forced to formulate a team for Savage. Particularly, Siren switched alliances during the battle and aided Tempest in escaping. Following these events, Tartarus members went their separate ways and the group disbanded.

One of Grodd’s widest-ranging schemes was to arrange Solovar's assassination and manipulate Gorilla City into war against humanity, with the aid of a "shadow cabinet" of prominent gorillas called Simian Scarlet. In the course of this, Grodd absorbed too much neural energy from his fellow apes, leaving him with the intelligence of a normal gorilla (Martian Manhunter Annual #2, 1999). He has since recovered, and a failed attempt to set up a base in Florida led to his capture and incarceration in Iron Heights.

Grodd was also seen in the Superman/Batman arc "Public Enemies" (Superman/Batman #1 – #7) controlling numerous villains and heroes using them to take down Superman and Batman for the prize of 1 billion dollars offered by president at the time Lex Luthor. Despite his use of foes such as Mongul, Solomon Grundy, Lady Shiva, and Nightshade, both were able to deduce his hand behind the attacks, and quickly disposed of Grodd.

He is responsible for crippling the Flash's friend Hunter Zolomon, resulting in his transformation into the villainous Zoom when Hunter tried to change the event so it never happened. Hunter would often think about how Grodd used him as a plaything in that fight while talking it over with the Flash (Flash #193)

Grodd tackled the International Ultramarine Corps. He ravaged the African city of Kinshasa, literally eating many hostages, so the Corps would take their floating city to it. The Corps were the real target and Grodd grounded their city and neutralized many of their members.

During the course of this incident, Beryl informed the team that Grodd ranks number three on the latest "Global Most Wanted". He had made no less then eighteen attempts to eliminate all traces of humanity from the face of the earth.

One of the attempts occurred in Son of Ambush Bug #5. Grodd had traveled to the late Cretaceous "to wipe out all traces of human evolution from the time stream." His plans were apparently shattered by a combination of the sudden appearance of Titano, and Ambush Bug waking from a nightmare. Whether or not Grodd's plan was a failure or not is disputable: Ambush Bug awoke to "Anchor-Ape Clark Kong."

In the Justice League of America Wedding Special, Gorilla Grodd was among the villains seen as members of the Injustice League Unlimited.

In Salvation Run #3, Grodd teamed up with the Joker and they gathered their own faction of the exiled supervillains. In #4, he killed Monsieur Mallah and The Brain, only to be knocked off a cliff by the Joker. He showed up alive in the final issue with an attempt to deliver payback to the Joker.

In Justice League of America #21, Grodd is shown among the members of Libra's new Secret Society and placed in the Inner Circle.

Powers and abilities

  • Superhuman (supersimian) physical attributes, vast psionic powers including transference of his consciousness, psychokinesis, telepathy, mind control, psychic blasts, and matter manipulation.
  • Genius level intellect with knowledge of technology beyond the development of human civilization

Other versions

The Antimatter Universe Version

Gorilla Grodd has a counterpart on the post-Crisis antimatter universe's Earth called General Grodd who is a member of the Justice Underground. He is a freedom fighter from a militaristic ape nation. JLA Secret Files 2004

Other media

Super Friends

Gorilla Grodd was a member of the Legion of Doom in the Challenge of the Super Friends television series in which one plot of his was taking control of Gorilla City. He was voiced by Stanley Ralph Ross. He later appeared in the short episodes "Revenge of Doom," and "Two Gleeks Are Deadlier Than One."

"The Flash" (live action series)

Gorilla Grodd was mentioned in passing by the character Nightshade in the episode titled "Deadly Nightshade" of the live action Flash TV series from the early 90's. He was a crime boss in the 50's who worked out of Central City's Helltown, and adversary of the original Nightshade.

He was also planned to appear but didn't due to budget problems.

Justice League and Justice League Unlimited

Gorilla Grodd in "The Brave and the Bold".
Gorilla Grodd in "The Brave and the Bold".

Gorilla Grodd is a recurring villain in Justice League and Justice League Unlimited, voiced by Powers Boothe. Generally, he's referred to as just "Grodd", although Flash mentions him as "Gorilla Grodd" in the episode "Comfort and Joy"; Doctor Fate does the same in the episode "The Great Brain Robbery". In his first appearance, "The Brave and the Bold", Grodd is a fugitive from the secretive Gorilla City, a spurned would-be tyrant who vowed vengeance on his fellow primates. Maintaining an e-mail relationship with Central City scientist Dr. Sarah Corwin, he comes to Central City to cloak the metropolis in a similar shield as Gorilla City's. This provided him a hidden base from which to launch a nuclear assault against Gorilla City, while he controlled the populace of Central City with his mind-control helmet. While the League hurried to stop the bombs, Flash, Green Lantern, and Solovar (re-imagined as the head of Gorilla City Security rather than its ruler) rushed to defeat Grodd himself. Grodd became incapacitated once he tried to use the mind-control helmet on Flash, not knowing that Flash had switched around various wires.

Grodd's return in "Secret Society" would showcase a different side of the villain. No longer focused on Gorilla City, Grodd became an opponent to the League as a whole. With his loyal follower Giganta, he recruited Killer Frost, Parasite, Shade, Sinestro, and Clayface to make a sort of anti-League dubbed "the Secret Society". Also learned in this episode is that Grodd's accident with his mind-control helmet has granted him mental powers, which he utilized in this story as a subtle type of tampering with the League's emotions. Having watched the League via secret cameras for weeks, Grodd starts manipulating their feelings until the Leaguers start lashing out at each other and end up walking away from the team. Having separated them, Grodd tries to capture each Leaguer and invades a football halftime show to do away with the heroes publicly, only to be foiled by J'onn J'onzz, who frees his teammates. The Society battles the League one last time, but fail to beat them. Of note in these episodes is that Grodd's romantic preferences become clear: he has a taste for human females, like Corwin or the artificially-made-human Giganta.

Finally, in the fifth season of Justice League Unlimited, Grodd turns up as the leader of an expanded Secret Society. As he describes it, the new Secret Society is a sort of cooperative|co-op for supervillains, banded together to help each other's villainy in the face of the expanded League.

After having the Secret Society seek out various valuable artifacts, Grodd revealed his master plan: to turn every human on the planet into apes. The plan, however, was thwarted by the Justice League. Subsequently, an unimpressed Lex Luthor shoots Grodd and usurps his position as the new leader of the Secret Society. Being obsessed with reclaiming the godlike power he briefly tasted when merged with the now-destroyed Brainiac, Luthor kept Grodd prisoner in the Secret Society's headquarters in the hopes that he reveal how to reconstitute the living supercomputer from the last remaining fragment. With the discovery that Brainiac had a base in deep space that was subsequently destroyed (see "Twilight of the Gods") Luthor has the Secret Society refit the headquarters for space travel, promising them a place of leadership in the new order with himself as absolute ruler.

Given Luthor's heavy-handed leadership and romantic disinterest, the spurned Tala eventually releases Grodd, who then arranges a mutiny with many other villains. Luthor uses his intellect and resourcefulness to counter his adversaries' powers. Grodd and Luthor finally find themselves alone together, and engage in fisticuffs. Grodd thoroughly dominates the fight and, after pummeling Luthor into helplessness, attempts to use his mind-control ability on him. However, Luthor had been anticipating this and was wearing a device that turned Grodd's power back on him, giving Luthor control of Grodd. Luthor forces him to step into an airlock after first humiliating him by making him bow down and acknowledge Luthor as his master. Grodd is released into the void, screaming threats.

Justice League: The New Frontier

A robotic duplicate of Gorilla Grodd appears in the animated film, Justice League: The New Frontier. The robot was used by the government to trap the Flash so they could study him.

Video games

Gorilla Grodd was featured in the video game Justice League Heroes voiced by Neil Kaplan. A robot double of Brainiac frees Gorilla Grodd from his prison so he can take revenge on Gorilla City for imprisoning him.


Gorilla Grodd is one of many super-intelligent primates in the DC Universe and should not be confused with:

See also

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