Cover of Marvel Apes 1 (Nov, 2008).Art by John Watson.
|Publication date||November — December 2008
February 2009 ("0" issue)
|Number of issues||5 (4 issue limited series followed three months later by a "0" issue)|
|Letterer(s)||Jared K. Fletcher|
|Colorist(s)||Javier Mena Guerrero|
Marvel Apes is a four-issue limited series by comics publisher Marvel Comics which started publication in October 2008. The series is written by Karl Kesel with art by Ramon Bachs and covers by John Watson.
The Marvel Apes reality is designated as Earth-8101.
Marvel Apes was first suggested as a successor to Marvel Zombies by artist and fan Mark Walsh during a convention Q&A session with Joe Quesada. As with Marvel Zombies before it, Marvel Apes takes place in an alternate universe, in this case a simian-dominated counterpart to Earth-616 that hosts anthropoid versions of popular Marvel Superheroes.
As with the introduction of Marvel Zombies in the pages of Ultimate Fantastic Four, the Marvel Apes universe is visited by an existing Marvel character, in this case Martin Blank a.k.a. Gibbon. He is accompanied by a female scientist named Fiona Fitzhugh in what has been described by Kesel as a "Lord of the Rings-style sprawling epic".
The Gibbon, apparently restored to his simian appearance with the related abilities, is left with his personal life in shambles. His attempts to side with the heroes are frustrated by his ineptitude, and even Princess Python, previously a caring and deeply devoted wife, is now fed up with the meek loser that Gibbon has become. Out of boredom and depression, he replies to an ad posted in the Daily Bugle by Fiona Fitzhugh, a spunky and cheery young scientist hoping to study the nature of super-powered individuals. Upon hearing that Gibbon had his powers since birth, as opposed to the majority of mutants who gain their first mutation during puberty, and analyzing his aura, she supposes that Gibbon may hail from another reality in the Multiverse. Attempting to contact such a reality, she's sucked into a portal along with Gibbon, and both of them end in a world populated by simian versions of the Marvel Heroes.
There, Gibbon manages to help Spider-Monkey and the Ape-Vengers, simian versions of the Avengers, into subduing Doc Ooktavius, and he's inducted into the Ape-Vengers, while Fiona is sent to ask for Reed Richards' help.
While Fiona tells the simian version of the Fantastic Four about Earth-616, she discovers that in the Marvel Apes reality the cosmic storm that gave the Fantastic Four their powers also gave a human appearance to Susan Storm. Gibbon is acquainted with the roster of the Ape-Vengers, a formation composed of a large roster of heroes and reformed villains, in which Captain America himself offers Gibbon a spot on the team. However, after witnessing the brutal lynching of Ooktavius, Gibbon discovers how savage and bestial the Ape-Vengers really are.
Pursued by Captain America, the Gibbon finally discovers the truth: Captain America is really the simian counterpart of the vampire Baron Blood, who in this reality was able, by sampling Captain America's blood in the forties, to take over his appearance and powers, subsequently using the brutal lynchings by the Ape-Vengers as a means to feed. With the help of a cadre of dissident heroes, the Gibbon finds the real Captain America, still frozen in ice, and thaws him to lead the last free heroes against their vampiric foe.
- Ape-Vengers - This reality's version of the Avengers.
- Captain America - A gorilla version of Captain America. He was actually Baron Blood in disguise. Gibbon managed to free the real one who helps to fight Baron Blood.
- Gro-Rilla - A gorilla version of Hank Pym.
- Hawkape - A primate version of Hawkeye.
- Iron Mandrill - A mandrill version of Iron Man.
- Monkey-C -
- Ms. Marvape - A primate version of Ms. Marvel.
- Magneto - A primate version of Magneto.
- Quicksilver - A primate version of Quicksilver.
- Scarlet Witch - A primate version of Scarlet Witch.
- Shang-Chimp - A chimpanzee version of Shang-Chi.
- Speedball - A chimpanzee version of Speedball.
- Spider-Monkey - A spider monkey version of Spider-Man.
- Thor - An orangutan version of Thor.
- Vision - A primate version of Vision.
- Wasp - A primate version of Wasp.
- Wonder Monk - A primate version of Wonder Man.
- Cleook - A primate version of Clea.
- Dagger - A primate version of Dagger.
- Doctor Druid - A primate version of Doctor Druid.
- Doctor Strange - A primate version of Doctor Strange.
- Elektra - A primate version of Elektra.
- Fantastic Four - This reality's version of the Fantastic Four.
- Insimians - This reality's version of the Inhumans.
- Iron Fist - A primate version of Iron Fist.
- MACH IV - A primate version of MACH IV.
- Power Simian - A primate version of Luke Cage.
- Punisher - A primate version of Punisher.
- X-Apes - This reality's version of the X-Men.
- Professor X - An ape version of Professor X.
- Angel - A primate version of Angel.
- Beast - A primate version of Beast.
- Cannonball - A primate version of Cannonball.
- Colossus - A gorilla version of Colossus.
- Cyclops - A primate version of Cyclops.
- Icemonk - A primate version of Iceman.
- Marvel Chimp - A chimpanzee version of Jean Grey.
- Nightcrawler - A primate version of Nightcrawler.
- Rogue - A primate version of Rogue.
- Shadowcat - A primate version of Shadowcat.
- Warlock - A primate version of Warlock.
- Wolverine - A primate version of Wolverine.
- Baron Blood - In this reality, Baron Blood retains his appearance and posed as Captain America while sampling his blood.
- Doctor Doom - A primate version of Doctor Doom.
- Invaders - This reality's version of the Invaders were infected by Baron Blood and turned into vampires.
- Juggermonk - A primate version of Juggernaut.
- L-ook-i - A primate version of Loki.
- Sandmonk - A primate version of Sandman.
- Ooktron - A robot monkey version of Ultron.
- F-ool-killer - A primate version of Foolkiller.
A sequel to the above, which pits Earth 2149's Marvel Zombies against their alternate metasimian equivalents, entitled Marvel Zombies: Evil Evolution has been released, as well as 4 other one-shot issues: Speed Ball Special, Amazing Spider-Monkey, Grunt Line, and Prime Eight.
- Monkey Business: Karl Kesel on Marvel Apes, Comics Bulletin, April 20, 2008
- Review of Marvel Apes #1, Comics Bulletin