In the original version, the Gump is seen as an elk where he first appeared in The Marvelous Land of Oz and in Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz. In Return to Oz, he is seen as a green moose with black antlers and a pink snout. He used to be an ordinary Gump in the forest until he heard a loud noise as if a hunter had shot him. He then comes back to life with the Powder of Life once he becomes a flying machine and helps Dorothy and her new crew rescue Oz from the Nome King.
In "The Marvelous Land of Oz", he is built as the flying machine to help Tip, Jack Pumpkinhead, Wogglebug, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and the Sawhorse get away from Jinjur and Mombi and get to Glinda the Good Witch of the South. He crash lands in a Jackdaw's nest and one of his palm-leaf wings gets broken. Wogglebug wishes the wing fixed with one of his magic pills and then the Gump finally takes the gang to Glinda. After Ozma takes her rightful place as queen, the Gump (who has somehow changed his mind about flying) is taken apart and mounted back on the wall, even though he can still talk. In "Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz", he meets Dorothy and tells her about his life as a flying machine until Ozma appears and tells Dorothy that he must hush up. (Ozma doesn't like it when he speaks for some reason.)
Role in the film
When Dorothy is locked in the tower of Mombi's palace, she sees the Gump (which reminds her of a deer head that she saw at the hospital) and some other stuff as she thinks of a way to escape. After she explains the plan to Billina, Jack Pumpkinhead, and Tik-Tok, they go to work building the flying machine with two sofas, a broom, four palm leaves, some rope, and the Gump. Dorothy comes back with the Powder of Life. She sprinkles it on him and he comes to life. Once Mombi enters the tower, he escapes through the window with Dorothy and her friends. He tells them about his previous life and asks them what he is now. Dorothy tells him that he's just a thing with a Gump's head on it and that they built him and brought him to life to take them to the Nome King's mountain to save the Scarecrow. He says that he may not last very long and doesn't feel too well put together. When Jack asks him if he can keep flying straight, he says that he can't turn if he wants to. When Jack and Tik-Tok see the Wheelers coming, the former asks him if he can fly any faster, but he says that he can't unless one of them wants to jump off. He keeps on flying through the night as the ropes that hold him together start breaking apart without anyone noticing. The next day, as Dorothy and her friends try to keep the ropes together, Jack loses his head. Dorothy tells the Gump to fly down so that they can save him. The Gump tells her that he wasn't made to make turns, but he does what he's told anyway. Dorothy saves Jack's head, but his body lets go of the rope he's holding onto and the Gump completely falls apart. When Dorothy and her friends safely land on the edge of the Nome King's mountain, all that's left of the Gump is his head and one remaining sofa. After Billina is hidden in Jack's head, Dorothy, Jack, and Tik-Tok don't know what to do about the Gump who tells them that he's much happier just being a head. But Dorothy and her friends don't want to carry him around, so they tie him back on the remaining sofa to get him to walk. He is worried that he might meet another Gump like him, but Dorothy tells him that he won't have to worry about that, for he appears to be the only one of his kind. During the ornament guessing game, the Gump is chosen to go first. He tells the Nome King that he doesn't have anything to touch with, but the Nome King tells him that he can use his antlers. He says to himself that he should've quit when he was ahead, but he goes in to play the game anyway. After Dorothy restores the Scarecrow and realizes that the Ozians were turned into green ornaments, the Scarecrow finds a green inkwell that the Gump had been turned into when he failed. Dorothy touches it, says "Oz!", and restores him to his old self. She tells him that he must look for green ornaments. During the chase, the Nome King grabs him by the sofa to eat him. He can't escape because he's too slow while being tied to the sofa, so Dorothy, Jack, and the Scarecrow rescue his head just in time while the Nome King only eats the sofa. He is carried by the Scarecrow as they all try to escape. Along the way, a green medal gets caught on one his antlers, but not even he notices that. When Dorothy and her friends mourn for the loss of Tik-Tok after saving the Emerald City, Billina sees the medal. The Gump says it came from the ornament collection as he chomps on some grass. Then, Dorothy touches it, says "Oz!", and Tik-Tok returns. During the celebration, he gets a new hairdo, a line of bows on the back of his neck, and gets pulled on a cart by the Shaggy Man. He gets mounted back on the wall, even though he's still alive. He and all the other Ozians say goodbye to Dorothy and live happily ever after.
- A behind the scenes special showing the filming of Return to Oz revealed that the Gump was a favorite character of Walter Murch.
- In The Marvelous Land of Oz, the Gump could not walk due to the legs of the sofas not being brought to life with the remaining powder
- In Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz, Ozma didn't like to hear the Gump speak ever since she changed from Tip to Ozma. But in Return to Oz, she somehow doesn't seem to mind his talking.
- The Gump was operated by Steve Norrington. Lyle Conway also operated and voiced him.