When you think of Marvel, the likes of Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, and Spider-Man undoubtedly enter your mind. After all, the “Marvel Cinematic Universe” is home to Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and many more, and the word “Marvel” has become as synonymous with these iconic characters as some of the actors who play them, such as Robert Downey Jr and Chris Hemsworth.
But Marvel is also home to so much more, and when we think about Marvel Comics in particular, it’s fair to say that this is a universe that gives even the MCU a run for its money. While Marvel Comics is of course primarily associated with Marvel Heroes, it also spans many other non-related franchises, such as Alien, Predator, and even Star Wars.
And now, it has reacquired the license to a major science fiction franchise, as Marvel Entertainment recently announced that the iconic Planet of the Apes will be returning to Marvel Comics, with brand-new stories starting early next year. This will likely come as great news to Apes fans, who haven’t had any new material since 2017’s War for the Planet of the Apes (2017).
Planet of the Apes began with the 1968 film of the same, which was based on the critically-acclaimed French novel by Pierre Boulle. The film went on to spawn four sequels in the original series, but was rebooted in 2001 by visionary director Tim Burton, which boasts a stellar cast that includes Mark Wahlberg (Captain Leo Davidson) and Helena Bonham Carter (Ari).
However, that film was a critical disaster, and another 10 years later, the series would undergo yet another reboot, only this time in the form of a prequel-of-sorts with Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011), which was directed by Rupert Wyatt and stars James Franco and Andy Serkis as Caesar, an ape brought to life with ground-breaking motion-capture technology.
Its sequels, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014) and War for the Planet of the Apes (2017), were both directed by Matt Reeves, who more recently helmed The Batman (2022). All three Apes films were huge successes, and the series is considered one of the best trilogies ever made, along with the likes of The Dark Knight Trilogy and the Back to the Future Trilogy.
A fourth film in the new series was confirmed to be in the works following Disney’s acquisition of Fox, so the sequel will fall under the Disney umbrella. But while no release date has been confirmed for Planet of the Apes 4, which is being directed by Wes Ball, it looks like we’ll be getting the new comic book series first, which is due out in early 2023.
Planet of the Apes is no stranger to comic books, though, and over the last five decades has also spawned an animated series, video games, novels, and even a live-action TV series. The comics, however, date back over 40 years, with the first published by Marvel in 1974, starting a twenty-nine-issue series which was comprised of existing and original stories that ran until 1977.
Marvel Comics Editor-in-Chief C.B. Cebulski said the following of the upcoming Planet of the Apes comic book series:
“We’re thrilled to welcome Planet of the Apes back to the House of Ideas! The new saga in the pipeline is going explore the limits of what this beloved franchise has to offer through bold comics storytelling, and we look forward to setting foot on this new adventure!”
Will you be getting your “stinkin’ paws” on the new Planet of the Apes comic book series? Let us know in the comments down below!