Before season three started, the writers behind Gotham teased the appearance of Solomon Grundy, a longtime DC Comics villain who has faced Batman and other heroes for decades. But we had to wait until one of the last scenes for the reveal. It turns out that Butch (Drew Powell) was Cyrus Gold, the 19th Century man who became the evil zombie Solomon Grundy.
In the two-part season finale, Butch was shot in the head by Barbara Kean (Erin Richards), who was later killed by Tabitha Galivan (Jessica Lucas). Just before the episode ended, the medical examiners learned that Butch’s chart listed his birth name as Cyrus Gold and he must have changed it.
Longtime DC Comics fans should recognize the name because that’s who Solomon Grundy really is. The character was first introduced in All-American Comics #61 in October 1944 and has had several different origins over the years.
Many of the origins have Gold as a 19th Century man who died in Gotham City’s Slaughter Swamp. He was either killed there or his body was brought there after his death. Years later, he is resurrected and wakes up as Solomon Grundy. Although the character never appeared in movies, he was featured in the DC Animated Universe and was voiced by Mark Hamill for most appearances.
Way back in May 2016, Gotham executive producer John Stephens told Comic Book Resources that Grundy will appear in season three.
“We’ll be seeing Mad Hatter in Season 3. We’ll be seeing the Tweedle Brothers, too, if we’re going to bring the Hatter in. In line with the Court of Owls, we’ll be seeing Talon. And, we should be seeing Solomon Grundy,” Stephens said. All of those teases came true (especially the Court of Owls part), with Grundy becoming the last to appear.
Stephens did play some misdirection though. He told IGN in August 2016 that Grundy wouldn’t be a character we already know. That wasn’t the case.
“It’s difficult to do that without giving too much away but the idea of one is reincarnation, which is one where we obviously already crossed that hurdle,” Stephens told IGN. “And the idea that someone would want to create reincarnation? Who out there would want to be interested in reincarnation?”
There was speculation that Kiernan Mulcrae (Marvel’s Jessica Jones) was cast to play Grundy when photos of him in an all-white suit on the Gotham set surfaced. This wasn’t to be, as Mulcrae only appeared in one episode – “Follow The White Rabbit” – in which he played the “White Rabbit” Jervis Tetch (Benedict Samuel) used to trick Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie).
Gotham will be back for a fourth season in Fall 2017, so we might just get to see Cyrus Gold walk the streets of Gotham City again.