Marvel makes its long-awaited return to the cosmic this July with Thor: Love and Thunder. Chris Hemsworth's fourth Thor film and ninth appearance as the God of Thunder will bring back popular supporting players like Tessa Thompson's newly crowned Valkyrie and Taika Waititi's Korg, but will also introduce plenty of rookies. At the top of that class is Gorr the God Butcher, portrayed by Academy Award-winner Christian Bale.
Compared to Bale's previous comic book movie role, Gorr is a significantly more obscure character. On the page, Gorr is native to an unnamed planet that is less than kind to its inhabitants. Despite being taught to place his faith in the gods, everyone Gorr cared for was killed by his home's unforgiving environment. The unanswered prayers left Gorr bitter towards these higher powers, and alas, the "God Butcher" was born.
Gorr the God Butcher's comic origins are only complete once he encounters a famous Spider-Man antagonist. While its unclear if Marvel Studios will link Love and Thunder to a character within Sony Pictures' library, a new toy set has teased the symbiotic connection.
Gorr the God Butcher's Necrosword
The God Butcher cometh.
As revealed by an official LEGO set, Thor: Love and Thunder's Gorr the God Butcher will wield All-Black the Necrosword.
A still image of Christian Bale's Gorr in LEGO form further highlights the famed weapon.
In the comics, All-Black is originally wielded by Knull, the creator of the symbiotes. The sword was transported to a helpless Gorr after Knull was left incapacitated after a battle, bonding to Gorr's arm.
Gorr would go on to wield All-Black in his crusade against the gods, slaying these deities across the cosmos. His murder mission would eventually lead him to the God of Thunder, clashing his necrosword with Thor's mighty hammer, Mjolnir.
Symbiotic Studio Synergy in Thor 4?
Thor: Love and Thunder just got a lot more interesting.
While Spider-Man has been swinging in the Marvel Cinematic Universe since 2016, his character rights still belong to Sony Pictures, along with his vast vat of supporting players. Among those supporting players is the aforementioned Knull, as his strongest ties in the comics are with Venom and other symbiotes.
Sony's current contractual agreement with Marvel Studios is for Peter Parker and Peter Parker alone. Marvel Studios helps produce Sony's Spider-Man films, and in exchange, Spider-Man can appear in MCU ensemble outings like Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Endgame.
The rights to use All-Black the Necrosword are likely at Marvel Studios, but exploring the weapon's full origins would need the okay from Sony. Considering Marvel and Sony have done mutually-beneficial business before, there's precedence to believe the Knull connections will be highlighted in Thor 4.
That said, if a deal was executed, what would Sony Pictures receive in return? In the past, Marvel has swapped characters with 20th Century Fox, trading the rights of Negasonic Teenage Warhead to Deadpool in exchange for Ego the Living Planet to appear in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. If a monetary return isn't enough, Sony could request the rights to someone from Marvel's library, or a one-off appearance from an MCU regular in a future Venom or Morbius film.
Even more interesting is the Spider-Man: No Way Home post-credits scene. Tom Hardy's Eddie Brock was only in the MCU for a cup of coffee, but a piece of his symbiotic friend is actively host-hunting within the universe. There's no telling whether Earth's symbiote and the other-worldly All-Black will connect, but the timing is noteworthy.
Thor: Love and Thunder hits theaters on July 8.