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For the Marco from the Amazon Sario Rip, see Marco
For the Marco from Visser Four's reality, see Marco
For the Marco from Back to Before, see Marco

"People don't understand the word ruthless. They think it means 'mean.' It's not about being mean. It's about seeing the bright, clear line that leads from A to B. The line that goes from motive to means. Beginning to end. It's about seeing that bright, clear line and not caring about anything but the beautiful fact that you can see the solution. Not caring about anything else but the perfection of it."

Marco is a founding member of the Animorphs and served as their militaristic strategist and tactician. Following the end of the Andalite-Yeerk War, he became a massively successful celebrity, working as an actor, author, technician and brand spokesperson.


Early Life

"He was too sweet-natured and trusting to ever make it very far in a hard world."
Edriss 562[src]

Marco was born in 1984[6] to a Hispanic[8] immigrant woman[9] named Eva[10] and a Caucasian father named Peter.[11] Marco lived up in a nice neighborhood[12] in California[3] as his father was a very skilled industrial computer software engineer[12][13] with the family even owning a private boat of their own at a marina, which they took often to go sailing.[10] While not fluent or even conversational in Spanish, Marco knew a few words as his maternal grandmother did not speak English.[8] Marco's mother taught him that humor could always be found in life,[2] and Marco himself was sweet-natured and trusting.[10]

While he was quite young, Marco met Jake, a boy who lived in his neighborhood and attended the same school as him, and the pair became best friends. Marco and Jake often played video games and had comic book superhero debates. In 1993,[14] when they were nine, they had a pie-eating contest that ended with Jake throwing up.[15]

Pre-Animorph Life

In 1995, when Marco was eleven years old,[16] his mother went out at night during inclement weather to go for a ride in their boat. Marco was suffering from a mild virus that night and was sick in bed.[10] However, Marco and his father were shortly notified that the boat had capsized and that Eva's body went missing. The pair were then informed by the authorities that Eva most likely had drowned.[12] Marco's personality transitioned from sweet and trusting[10] to a dark, serious and jaded demeanor. Marco also used humor and comedy as a coping mechanism, while his father Peter stopped going to work and stayed up all night staring at a blank television. Due to Peter no longer working, they were forced to sell their house and moved to an apartment in the bad side of town, where Peter obtained employment as a janitor.[12]

Becoming an Animorph

Night at the Mall

"Out of quarters. Certain people keep forgetting that the SleazeTroll shows up right after you cross the Nether Fjord. So certain people keep losing the game — and losing our quarter."
―Marco to Tobias[src]

One Friday night in 1997,[17] when he was thirteen,[18] Marco spent time at the mall after school with Jake, where they spent time playing video games and hanging out at a comic book store. After running out of quarters, Marco and Jake decided to walk home together when they encountered Tobias, a kid from their middle school whom Jake had saved from bullying earlier. As Marco informed Tobias that Jake had wasted their quarters, Tobias decided to walk home with them.[19] As they walked towards the exit, they ran into Jake's cousin Rachel and her best friend Cassie, whom Jake had a crush on. While Marco was aware of Tobias, Rachel and Cassie as students from school, he was not friends with them. Rachel and Cassie decided to walk home with Jake, leading to the five thirteen year olds leaving the mall together. They headed towards an abandoned construction site, which Marco and Jake had frequented before during daytime, intending to use the site as a shortcut.[19] However, unbeknownst to Marco, a cosmic figure known as the Ellimist had predestined for Marco, along with Tobias and Cassie, to be walking home through the construction site that night.[20]

Gaining Morphing Powers

"We should tell someone. I mean, this is kind of major, you know? Spaceships don't just land in the construction site every day. We should call the cops or the army or the president or something. We'd be totally famous. We'd get to be on Letterman for sure."

While walking silently through the abandoned construction site, Marco heard Cassie exclaim that there was a flying saucer in the sky. Marco laughed before looking up and realizing that there was indeed an alien spaceship headed towards them. As it approached, Jake noted that the tail section of the ship looked to be a weapon, which Marco agreed with. Marco realized that the ship seemed to have noticed them and asked the others if they should run home and get a video camera, claiming that they would get a lot of money for video footage of an actual UFO. When Jake joked that if they might get shot by phasers, Marco rolled his eyes and retorted that this wasn't Star Trek. As the ship landed in front of them, Marco considered that they should go and tell the authorities, adding that they would be famous and end up on the Late Show with David Letterman.

Marco TAC Illustration

Marco meeting Elfangor

Marco witnessed as a blue alien exited from the ship, who greeted them all before collapsing. Dying of his injuries, the aliens informed the teenagers that there were other aliens, known as the Yeerks, who were already on Earth and intended to destroy humans. Marco asked him how no one had noticed aliens walking around, and the alien transmitted an image of a green-gray slug into their minds, which Marco realized was a Yeerk. The alien explained that the Yeerks were a parasitic species that take over bodies to use as hosts, after which they become known as Controllers. The alien, revealing himself to be a member of a species called an Andalite, added that it would take a year if not more for the Andalite forces to come to Earth, and urged the teenagers to warn humanity of the Yeerk threat. Looking at Jake, Marco stated that no one would believe them.

The Andalite suddenly exclaimed that they should retrieve a blue box from his ship. As Jake retrieved the box, the Andalite informed them that he could use the box to grant them the ability to morph — by touching an animal and concentrating, they could acquire that creature's DNA and transform their bodies into that of the animal's. Marco laughed, not believing that such a power were true and uttered that everything the Andalite told them was "nuts." As the teenagers decided whether they should accept the power, Rachel noticed something in the sky and wondered what it was, to which the Andalite replied that those were the Yeerks. The Andalite urged them to decide quickly, and all of them except for Marco agreed. However, Marco still joined them as they pressed their hands against the box, and felt a tingle run through him as he received the morphing ability.

The Andalite warned them that they should not stay in morph for more than two hours or else they would be trapped before yelling at them to run since Visser Three was coming. Hiding behind a low wall, Marco witnessed as the Blade ship and Bug fighters landed. As tall, bladed creatures emerged from the Blade ship, the dying Andalite used his thought-speak to mentally communicate with them, informing them that these were Hork-Bajir-Controllers and that the giant centipede-like creatures that were also emerging were known as Taxxons. The five kids then tried to remain silent as one of the Hork-Bajir-Controllers positioned himself near their hiding spot. They then noticed an Andalite emerging from the Blade ship, which the dying Andalite explained was Visser Three — the only Andalite-Controller to exist.

Marco watched as Visser Three greeted the Andalite as Prince Elfangor and was informed by Jake that there were some humans with the Yeerks. The kids continued to observe as Visser Three morphed into a monstrous creature with multiple ringed teeth. As the Visser used one of his arms to lift Elfangor, Jake picked up a pipe and tried to jump into action. Marco quickly restrained Jake with Tobias' help and hissed at his best friend to shut up before he got them all killed. Marco then watched as the Visser ate Elfangor and heard Elfangor's mental screams as he was being ripped apart before he died. Marco then threw up, prompting the nearby Hork-Bajir-Controller to look in their direction. The five teenagers then bolted and ran their separate ways as the Yeerks began pursuing them. Marco successfully managed to escape from the site and ran back home.[19]

Investigating the Yeerks

"You want to get into this fight against the Yeerks? Fine. Let's see how much you want to do it when it turns out it's your own brother you have to destroy. It's not exactly some video game, is it? This is reality. You don't know anything about reality, Jake. Nothing bad has ever really happened to you. You have this perfect family. Like I used to have. [...] So maybe we just walk away from this. Let someone else fight this fight. Sorry about the Andalite, but I've got enough death in my family."
―Marco to Jake[src]

The next morning, a Saturday, Marco was at home when he received a phone call from Jake, informing him that he and Tobias had morphed and that they were to have a meeting at Cassie's farm. Marco then went to the farm, where he encountered Rachel and Tobias. Marco read a newspaper, learning that while residents near the abandoned construction site had called the local police about seeing spaceships and explosions, the police claimed they had investigated the matter and concluded there were no spaceships; additionally, the police stated that the explosions were just teenagers using fireworks, whom they were now looking for. They then realized that the police and media contained Controllers, and when Jake arrived, they shared the newspaper and their realization with him.

As they sat in silence, Marco told them that they should just forget what they've learned and move on with their lives. As Jake began to argue, Marco yelled that they could all get killed if they get involved, adding that if something happened to him, his father would stop deciding to continue living. A horse then galloped up to them and began to demorph into Cassie, prompting Marco to fall down in shock. However, his surprise was short-lived when a police cruiser suddenly pulled up to the farm. Marco then joined the others to shield Cassie from view as she finished demorphing. Marco then observed as the police officer questioned them about information on kids being at the abandoned construction site the night before, prompting Marco to immediately realize that the man was a Controller. After getting no information, Marco watched as the officer left, although not before inviting Jake to join The Sharing.

Rachel then advised them that they should be careful when morphing, prompting Marco to state that it wouldn't be a problem since they were not to morph anymore. When Tobias declared that they should fight, Marco retorted that Tobias could not even fight off the bullies at school. As the group began arguing what they should do, Cassie suggested that they take some time to think about it, which Jake agreed with. Marco then smirked, believing that the decision had been in his favor, and walked back with Jake to his house to play Dead Zone 5 on Jake's computer.

At Jake's house, Tom entered the room and asked to play, and Marco gave him his controller. Marco listened as Tom kept asking whether they knew anything about the kids at the construction site before recommending that the two join The Sharing. Shortly after Tom exited the room, Marco told Jake that Tom was a Controller, prompting Jake to punch Marco in the head. Marco managed to subdue Jake, promising to let him go if he stopped attacking. The duo were then interrupted by a red-tailed hawk outside Jake's window, who quickly revealed itself to be Tobias in morph. Tobias explained that he had acquired the hawk at Cassie's farm and that he had been looking for a Yeerk Pool. When Marco and Jake looked on in confusion, Tobias explained that Elfangor had given him visions and knowledge, including the fact that every three days a Yeerk must go into the Yeerk pool to absorb Kandrona rays.

Marco brought up that both Tom and the policeman-Controller had brought up joining The Sharing, which might be a possible organization run by the Yeerks. He then told Jake that if he were to start fighting the Yeerks, he might have to end up taking out Tom, and added that Jake had no idea what is was like to lose a family member. Jake replied that they should attend a meeting of The Sharing to learn more and offered Marco the chance to decline, although Marco agreed to tag along on the provision that it was just a meeting. Meeting up with Rachel and Cassie, the five walked to the beach where The Sharing was holding a bonfire.

On the way, Tobias hid behind a dune and assumed his hawk morph in order to spy from above while Marco put Tobias' clothes in his bag. Joining the festivities on the beach, they played volleyball and ate barbecue while speaking with the other members there. Regrouping, Marco laughed and claimed that he was recanting his earlier suspicions, stating that he no longer believed that The Sharing was Yeerk-affiliated or that Tom was a Controller. However, Jake wished to continue his investigation, and Marco watched as Jake morphed into his golden retriever Homer to spy on the full members' meeting. Upon his return, Jake notified them that Tom was indeed a Controller, along with their assistant principal Chapman, and that they were still looking for the kids who fled from the construction site. Marco reiterated that he believed they should forget what they learned and resume their normal lives, although the others declared that they wanted to fight the Yeerks, including Jake, who wished to rescue his brother. Marco retorted that the others weren't the Fantastic Four, but the argument came to a close when Jake once again suggested that they take time to think about their decision. The group then went their separate ways as they each returned home.[19]

First Mission

"This is so bad. If it wasn't for Tom I'd walk away."
"Look, Marco, you don't have to—"
"Oh, shut up! You're my best friend, you jerk. Like I'm going to let you go face all this alone? I'm in. I'm in, to rescue Tom. That's it. Then I'm done."
―Marco and Jake[src]

On Monday, Marco headed to the mall's food court after school in order to meet up with the others, where Jake informed them that he had located the entrance to the Yeerk pool in the janitor's closet at school and that he had heard human screams. Jake informed the others that he would be heading down into the Yeerk pool later that night in order to free Tom and that the others did not need to accompany him, although Rachel, Tobias and Cassie announced that they would. Marco then looked away and muttered that Jake's idea was bad and that if it weren't for Tom, he would decline. As Jake began to say that he did not need to come, Marco interrupted and stated that Jake was his best friend and that he wouldn't let him go into the Yeerk pool alone. He then stated that he would join their team in order to rescue Tom, but that it would also be his one and only mission. The newly-formed team then decided to pay a visit to The Gardens, the local amusement park-zoo where Cassie's mother worked, in order to acquire more dangerous morphs. When they were discussing admission, Cassie told them that she could give them her mother's employee discount, prompting Marco to chime in that perhaps they would get in for free if they announced that they were Animorphs. Rachel then inquired as to what that meant, and Marco quipped that they it signified that they were "idiot teenagers with a death wish."[19] He then clarified that he had coined the term as a portmanteau for "animal morphers"[21] which the others then accepted as their official team's name.[19]

Taking the bus to The Gardens, the five of them were escorted by Cassie into the employees' hallway, which contained multiple doors leading to all of the animal enclosures. Cassie guided them to the enclosure where a Silverback gorilla named Big Jim was held and asked the others how they felt about acquiring it. Rachel suggested that Marco acquire it, but when Marco hesitated, Jake bruised his ego by suggesting they get him a koala morph instead. Putting on some bravado, Marco agreed and touched Big Jim's wrist, successfully obtaining his first morph. The team was then interrupted by an employee heading their way, prompting them to return to the hallway, where they found themselves facing a crossroads. Marco began to walk down the path leading to the more dangerous animals, citing their need for more firepower, while Rachel headed towards where the dolphins were. The five of them were then spotted by a security guard who began to give chase; Marco then ran down the hallway with Jake in tow followed by the guard while the other three escaped.

Spotting an electric golf cart, Marco suggested that they steal it in order to evade their pursuer, although Marco's lack of driving skill caused him to take wild turns, resulting in Jake falling out. The two then noticed two younger guards heading their way, and the pair ran into one of the doors to hide. Finding themselves in a tropical enclosure, both of them realized that the animals held within must be dangerous as the guards had chosen not to open the door. Marco suddenly noticed a male Siberian tiger behind Jake, as well as an exit ladder on the other side of the exhibit. Jake told Marco that he would acquire the tiger to place it in a trance, after which the two boys ran towards the latter. However, as they ran, another tiger that was also in the enclosure began chasing them; although it nearly bit them, the two managed to jump onto the ladder and climb back out. Returning to the public space, they found themselves within the eyeline of the two guards, prompting them to hide within a crowd and hunch. They then made their way back to the main entrance, where they regrouped with the other three. After informing them of their experience, which the others were reluctant to believe, the Animorphs got on the bus and returned back to their homes.

A few hours later, Marco biked to the school to meet up with the others, waiting alongside Rachel and Tobias, the latter of whom decided to already enter his red-tailed hawk morph. Jake soon showed up and informed the others that Cassie was missing. The four nonetheless decided to continue on with their mission, with Marco leading them to a window he knew of that could not lock. Entering a classroom through the window, Marco watched as Jake and Tobias peered out of the hallway, notifying them that Controllers were entering the janitor's closet and that one of them, the police-Controller from earlier that day, was dragging Cassie with him. The four Animorphs walked out into the hallway and entered the janitor's closet, where they found the entrance to the Yeerk pool.

As they began descending the many stairs, Marco noticed in horror that the passageway in the janitor's closet was not the sole entrance and that were multiple access points as the Yeerk pool was revealed to be a gigantic subterranean cavern, with Marco estimating that the pool was situated under half of their city. The group watched in horror as the Controllers re-entered the pool on one pier, with their screaming hosts thrown into cages, after which they would be brought to the reinfestation pier. Jake then noticed a group of Controllers laughing as they watched television, which Tobias explained were voluntary Controllers. Rachel disparaged the humans who had willingly allowed themselves to be infested, to which Marco reminded her that some humans were scum; when Tobias added that certain humans turned to The Sharing and accepted the Yeerks in their heads as they believed becoming something different would be the solution to their personal troubles, Marco retorted that some other humans turned to hawks in order to do the same, which offended Tobias and prompted him to fly away from them. Tobias then flew back and informed them that Cassie was on the infestation pier and that they had mere minutes to save her.

Marco, Jake and Rachel walked away from the stairs and ducked behind a shed; there, Marco pulled Jake to the side, telling him that while he was okay with the fact that he might get killed, he wanted Jake to ensure that he wouldn't allow him to become infested. Their conversation was then interrupted by a human-Controller, who found them to be suspicious and ordered his accompanying Hork-Bajir-Controller and Taxxon-Controller to take them. Rachel, who hadn't been noticed, stealthily manuevered herself behind the three Controllers and morphed into an African elephant. Rejoicing that she had successfully morphed, she popped the Taxxon and flung the human-Controller away.

Marco morphs into gorilla GN1

Marco morphs for the first time

Jake yelled at Marco to morph, which he complied with; Marco morphed for the very first time as he successfully transformed into a Silverback gorilla. Using his powerful arms, Marco punched the Hork-Bajir-Controller before throwing him aside. Joined by Rachel and Jake, the latter having morphed into the Siberian tiger, the three headed towards the cages, defeating the Controllers who attempt to impede them with ease. Marco was able to use the gorilla's dexterity to pull off the cages on the locks, although the prisoners were afraid at the sight of wild animals in front of them. In order to assuage their fears, Marco bowed and curled his finger and ushered them out of captivity. Rachel then yelled that Cassie was about to be infested, and Marco told Jake to save her while he would stay with Tom.

After freeing all of the caged hosts, Marco ran for the stairs, only to find their escape interrupted by Taxxon-Controllers. Marco wrapped his gorilla arms around a Taxxon and began climbing up the stairs when Visser Three appeared. Believing them to be Andalites in morph, the Visser morphed into a giant fire-breathing monster with eight heads. Marco ran up the stairs with Tom and several other prisoners, although most of them were burned or recaptured due to Visser Three's fiery projectiles, which had also blocked their exit. As the Visser began climbing the stairs behind them, Tom broke away to attack him but was swatted off the stairs. This caused Jake to attack Visser Three in a rage, and Marco, along with Cassie, a half-morphed Rachel and one sole freed prisoner, to pass through the fire and return to the school hallway. The Animorphs emerged into the school hallway still morphed and split up; Marco then demorphed[22] and went back home.[19] Shortly after, Marco learned that Tobias, who was left behind in the Yeerk Pool and managed to escape on his own, had passed the two-hour limit and was now trapped as a red-tailed hawk.[5]

Reluctant Animorph

Morphing Practice

"This morphing thing would be so excellent if it weren't for the whole thing with the Yeerks. I mean, if it were just normal, we could really use these powers."
"To do what? Fight crime?"
"Fight crime? Who are you, Spider-Man? I'm talking show business. Movies! TV shows! I could go on Letterman. I could be an entire episode of Stupid Pet Tricks all by myself. [...] Now I'm really mad at the Yeerks. They're getting in the way of my showbiz career. I could be a millionaire. I could be trading funny lines with Dave. I could have beautiful Hollywood supermodels all over me."
―Marco and Jake[src]

Marco was then taught by Cassie how to incorporate skintight clothing such as bike shorts into the morphing process so that he wouldn't be nude when he demorphed. A little over a week after their trip to the Yeerk pool, the four morph-capable Animorphs acquired bird-of-prey morphs, with Marco and Cassie acquiring the same osprey. The four then walked to a run-down church near a beach by some cliffs and made their way to the abandoned bell tower. Stripping off their outer clothing, the Animorphs morphed into their raptor morphs for the first time and joined Tobias in the sky. While enjoying the experience of flying, the Animorphs were shot at by drunk teenagers. The Animorphs then rushed towards the teens, and as Rachel grabbed the rifle of one of the teens, Marco grabbed the beer can that the other teen was holding, admonishing him among the Animorphs for underage drinking. Flying towards the beach, Marco perfectly dropped the beer can in a trash can, much to his pride. The team flew back to the bell tower and demorphed. Marco then mentioned that he was grateful to have human vision again and referred to certain women at the mall as being skanks. This insulted Rachel, although Marco quickly claimed he wasn't sexist and that the judgment worked both ways since he was short.

As the group walked home, Marco bemoaned that they could be using morphing to have a showbiz career, specifying that he could've been on the Late Show with David Letterman, speaking with Dave Letterman as a millionaire while also having Hollywood supermodels be with him. The Animorphs then walked past the abandoned construction site, which brought back memories. When the discussion of trying to find another chance to attack the Yeerks came up, Marco brought up that they had already fought them once had lost; Jake responded that he shouldn't quit a sport if he lost a game before he informed them that the janitor's closet entrance to the pool had been sealed. Rachel then suggested that they follow Tom to find a new Yeerk pool entrance, although Jake quickly shut it down, stating that he did not want to risk the Yeerks noticing and killing Tom. Marco asked why they were risking their lives and the lives of the people they knew, and fell silent when Cassie responded that they were doing it for freedom. Jake and Rachel then discussed getting close to Chapman through his daughter Melissa, who was a friend of Rachel's, which Rachel was not comfortable with since Melissa was her friend. Marco then chimed in that Rachel didn't seem to have any issue putting his life in jeopardy, to which Rachel immediately retorted that Marco wasn't her friend. This hurt Marco's feelings, and so Rachel quickly assured him that she was kidding and that they were indeed friends.[5]

Chapman Investigation

"Not Fantastic Four. I'm thinking more an X-Men kind of thing. It's not about being identical, it's just about having some style." [...]
"Marco. I think it's time to get over this fantasy of yours. We are not superheroes. This is not a comic book."
"Yes, but I really, really want it to be a comic book. See, in a comic book the heroes don't get killed. I mean, okay, they killed Superman that time, but it was only temporary."
"Can we deal with reality here? We have business to discuss. [...] We need to decide what we're doing next."
"I want to decide what we're
not doing next. I should be spending more time with my dad. You know, he's still messed up over my mom...."
―Marco, Rachel and Jake[src]

The next night, after school, Marco, Jake and Cassie were invited to Rachel's house, where Rachel informed them that Melissa Chapman was not open to hanging out with her; she also revealed that she had been harassed by a grown man while walking home, who tried to get her into his car before chasing her. When Rachel disclosed that she had partially morphed into an elephant to scare him away. Marco yelled at Rachel for risking their identities by publicly morphing, adding that she could've been seen and that the man could share the story with Controllers. Jake, who like Marco did not register the true danger Rachel was in, also believed that Rachel had committed a mistake, although he told Marco to ease off. Jake then discussed what their next strategy to get close to Chapman would be since they couldn't use Melissa directly, to which Rachel divulged that Melissa had a pet cat that she could morph.

One night, the Animorphs traveled to the street where the Chapmans resided, bringing a cat carrier with them. Marco groaned about Chapman, citing that he already afraid of the man before learning he was a Controller, to which Rachel brought up an earlier incident where Marco had been given detention by Chapman when he had been caught singing along to music in class by hiding an earphone under his long hair. Tobias then informed them that he had spotted the cat, which Rachel revealed was named Fluffer McKitty, prompting Marco to scoff. When Tobias mentioned that he could see rats and mice with his hawk vision, Marco was disturbed at the thought of rats in the suburbs. Tobias then described the rats as being plump and juicy, which disgusted Marco, who immediately declared that he could not be friends with someone who ate rats. This prompted both Rachel and Jake to berate Marco in anger, with Jake adding that they were still friends despite the fact that he had eaten a spider. Slightly apologetic, Marco stated that he wouldn't criticize Tobias. Tobias then led them towards the lawn where Fluffer was. As Jake and Marco waited, Rachel and Cassie crossed onto the lawn. When Fluffer scratched Rachel and jumped up into a tree, Marco watched as Rachel decided to acquire and morph into a shrew to lure the cat down. After Rachel briefly ran away due to the shrew's instincts, Marco picked her up and placed her back near the tree. When Fluffer pounced, Marco quickly grabbed the cat, only to scream and nearly drop him when Fluffer clawed at him. Marco then helped Jake and Cassie force Fluffer into the cat carrier while bemoaning that he was now bleeding. As Rachel was feeling unwell due to her experience as a shrew, the group decided to postpone the infiltration for another night.

A few nights later, the Animorphs regrouped outside Chapman's house, where Tobias informed the group that the real Fluffer was nowhere near the house. Rachel was eager to get inside the house in order to check up on Melissa, to which Marco reminded her that the mission was not to help Melissa but to spy on her father so that they could turn into animals and die fighting the Yeerks. When Rachel merely replied that she knew why they were doing this, Marco told her to take care of herself and added that if Chapman caught her it would mean detention for a year, which got the group to all laugh. Tobias then reported that there was no one in their vicinity, prompting Marco to remark that he and Tobias could team up to commit burglaries while Jake would stop them. Marco then watched as Rachel morphed into the cat, admiring the morphing process. As Rachel felt the cat's cocky confidence, Marco advised her to keep some of her human fear and jokingly offered some of his. Marco then waited outside with the others as Rachel began her infiltration. An hour later, the team noticed that Fluffer was trying to return home and tried to capture him, to no avail. The group waited outside until Rachel eventually rejoined them, with only ten minutes left on her morphing clock. Jake uttered that he hoped Rachel at least learned something useful, and Rachel divulged that Chapman had a way to communicate directly with Visser Three and that the Yeerks still believed them to Andalites.

The next day at school, Marco was informed by Jake that they were having a meeting at the church tower. Despite being reluctant to be an Animorph, Marco still wore his morphing outfit underneath his clothes and flew to the tower after school. Upon demorphing, Marco remarked that their morphing outfits needed work and that they did not look like superheroes, adding that he thought they should emulate the style of the X-Men. Rachel then retorted that they weren't superheroes and that they weren't in a comic book, to which Marco mentioned that he wished they were since heroes did not die in comic books, before admitting that Superman did temporarily die. As Jake tried to steer the conversation into discussing their next plans, Marco stated that he did not wish to do so and that he thought he should be spending time with his father instead following his mother's tragedy. Marco's voice then cracked upon mentioning his mother, and Cassie recommended that he spend more time with his father and that the Animorphs shouldn't forget the reason for why they fight. Marco then put on a face of assuredness and asked what their next move was. Rachel informed the group that she wanted to go back inside the Chapman Residence so that she could learn the location of the Kandrona, as destroying it would strike a significant blow to the Yeerks. Marco was skeptical of the idea, since the Animorphs did not know what the Kandrona even looked like. Marco listened as the others considered sending someone in with Rachel, to which Rachel made a flippant suggestion that one of them could morph into a flea and ride on her back. Jake then agreed to let Rachel return before the Animorphs disbanded for the day, planning to meet up outside the Chapman house later that night.

Since Rachel was hiding details from them, the Animorphs decided to take Rachel's carefree suggestion to heart. Along with Cassie, Marco aided Jake in acquiring, morphing and testing out a flea morph. That night, as it was dark and stormy, Marco donned a raincoat and joined Jake, Cassie and Tobias down the street of Chapman's house before Rachel was to join them. Jake then morphed into a flea and was picked up by Cassie. When Rachel joined them, she inquired as to Jake's absence, and Marco responded that Jake had been grounded by his father and could not make it. Marco then watched as Rachel morphed into the cat before Cassie secretly transmitted Jake's flea form onto Rachel's back. A while later, they discovered that Rachel (and by extnesion Jake) had been captured by "Chapman" and were being driven somewhere. Marco joined Tobias and Cassie in flying to the construction site, where they started up some earthmovers to serve as a distraction; one of the earthmovers managed to collide with one of the Bug fighters, causing the Bug fighter to explode, with the explosion causing some of Marco's osprey feathers to be singed. With Jake and Rachel successfully escaping, the remaining Animorphs fled as well.

A few days later, Marco reconvened with the other Animorphs, by which point Rachel had disclosed to the rest of the team that Chapman had become a voluntary host to ensure Melissa's freedom. Rachel then revealed that she had used her word processing program to print a cryptic letter to lift Melissa's spirits. Jake remarked that at least the ordeal resulted in the destruction of a Bug fighter, along with Visser Three being more nervous of them. Marco then interjected that they also all came out alive, which Jake cheerfully agreed was the most important thing. They began discussing what they would do next when Marco, in mock surprise, "protested" against the idea of a next time. Tobias then affirmed that the Animorphs would keep fighting until the Andalites arrived.[5]

Truck Ship Operation

"We're supposed to be rescuing the entire human race from being enslaved by the Yeerks."
"I thought you didn't want to save the world, Marco."
"You're right. But since all of you guys think you have to save the world, and since you're all my friends, more or less, I figure someone has to keep you from being total idiots."
―Marco and Tobias[src]

On a Saturday, Marco saw a live commercial for Dealin' Dan Hawke's Used Cars on television where a red-tailed hawk freed another captive red-tailed hawk while an elephant stomped on the cars. Immediately realizing that it was Tobias and Rachel, Marco, along with Jake and Cassie, made their way to Rachel's house and waited in Rachel's room until she got home. As Rachel returned home and entered her room as Tobias flew in through the open window, Marco yelled at them for their carelessness and stupidity while Jake made the two promise not to do something like that again as Cassie mediated. Marco chimed in that the Animorphs were supposed to be saving the human race from the Yeerks instead of animals; when Tobias replied that Marco, as the reluctant Animorph, wasn't keen on fighting the Yeerks, Marco replied that he was sticking around to keep the others, all of whom he now considered his friends more or less, from doing anything idiotic. The team quickly patched their tensions and began sharing jokes before leaving Rachel's house.

The next day, the Animorphs convened at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Clinic on Cassie's farm, where Tobias notified them that he had seen an invisible Yeerk ship coming to and from the mountains. When Marco expressed reluctance, Rachel yelled at him for his hesitancy and told him he could leave the group, prompting Marco to fire back that Rachel was not truly interested in saving humanity but rather got off on the danger and action. Amidst the argument, Tobias stated that he was going to the mountains the next morning regardless of what everyone else did. Rachel, Jake and Cassie then agreed to come with him, although Marco pointed out the next day (a Monday) was a school day and that if they skipped school to attack the Yeerks, Chapman might suspect them. The Animorphs then decided to go to the mountains after school the next day.

Marco Wolf

Marco in wolf morph at the mountain lake

On Monday, the Animorphs regrouped at the clinic. Deciding not to fly out to the mountains as their assortment of raptor forms could be spotted by bird-watchers, it was decided that they would get to the mountains by running through the forest as wolves. There was a pair of wolves at the clinic, one male and one female; however, Cassie stated that wolf packs had a hierarchy and there could only be one male per pack. Jake and Marco then flipped a coin for it, with Jake winning; Jake then acquired the male wolf while the other three acquired the female. As Cassie's farm bordered the national forest, they entered the forest on foot and walked a good ways in before morphing into the wolf, after which they ran through the forest at twenty miles an hour. Tobias, who had been performing reconnaissance, informed them that there was a nearby lake surrounded with Park Ranger Controllers armed with automatic weapons alongside Hork-Bajir-Controllers. They then decided to walk to the lake in order to witness the situation for themselves; there, they marveled at the sight of the uncloaked disturbance that Tobias had seen, which was revealed to be a giant spaceship. Noticing that the giant ship had oxygen intake and was currently draining water for the lake, Marco laughed and announced that the Yeerks now had an additional weakness; the ship, which they dubbed a Truck ship, was designed to transport oxygen and water to orbit, most likely to the Pool ship, meaning the Yeerks needed those two elements to survive and could not manufacture them on their own.

Deciding to retreat, they returned to the forest, where they accidentally entered the territory of a rival wolf pack that had just killed a rabbit. The rival pack believed the Animorphs were encroaching on their territory to steal their kill, and Jake was forced to stand his ground as Cassie remarked that looking weak might cause the other pack to attack them. Tobias then swooped down and snatched the rabbit, redirecting the wolf pack's attention which allowed the other Animorphs to escape. As they ran through the woods, Tobias screamed at them via thought-speak to demorph, telling them that they had no time left in morph. Marco then began demorphing, although he could only manage to regain his human head while the rest of his body refused to change. However, with Cassie's coaching, Marco and the others were able to demorph entirely. As the four rejoiced over not being stuck in morph, Tobias flew away from them.

The next day after school, the Animorphs gathered for a meeting inside Jake's room, with his house being safe since Tom would be away at a Sharing meeting. Rachel informed the others that she could not stay for long as her gymnastics class was holding an exhibition at the mall in a short while, and Marco immediately responded that he would be there, although Rachel told him that she didn't want any of them coming to see her perform. As the team discussed the Truck ship, Rachel brought up the idea of destroying the ship, stating that perhaps the Yeerks might leave Earth if they ran out of air and water, although Cassie pointed out that they did not know how many other Truck ships the Yeerks possessed. Marco then brought up the idea of turning off the Truck ship's cloaking technology while it was flying above the city, thereby allowing everyone to see it. Jake and Rachel became excited at the prospect of the rest of the world discovering the invasion and letting the authorities handle it.

Jake then announced that they would be using fish morphs to enter the Truck ship through its water pipes in order to uncloak the ship, much to Marco's chagrin. With a plan set, Rachel and Cassie got up to leave, and Marco told Rachel that he would come to see her exhibition at the mall. As Rachel glared at Marco before she left, Marco joked with Jake and Tobias that Rachel liked him. Jake told Tobias that the next mission would have to be on a Saturday, as he wanted them to get to the mountains in the morning long before the Truck ship was scheduled to appear later that day. Jake then began to ask Tobias if he could scope out the area, which Tobias agreed to. Marco then asked if they should play Doom or if he should go to the mall to see Rachel, to which Jake told him that he couldn't play since they had homework. Tobias then flew out of Jake's room, and Marco left to go to the mall. While at the mall, Marco was watching Rachel's routine when Tobias flew into the mall, trying to commit suicide. Noticing that Tobias was trying to slam into the skylight, Marco, who was on the second floor, threw a baseball at the skylight, shattering the glass and saving Tobias' life. Tobias then began living in the wild as a true red-tailed hawk who hunted and ate live prey, and did not rejoin with the other Animorphs until a few days later.

On Saturday morning, Marco and the other Animorphs gathered and solidified their plan: they would morph into wolves and travel to the lake, where they would then start fishing. Once they acquired a fish, they would practice the morph before retreating to a nearby bear cave that Tobias reported was empty. Then, when the Truck ship arrived, they would slowly make their way to the edge of the lake, morph into fish and swim towards the Truck ship, where they would then get sucked up into the ship. Rachel fashioned a tan-colored nylon pouch, which contained a watch, a fishing line, some fishing hooks and a lighter, and tied it to Tobias' leg. At the lake, Marco and the others spent hours trying to catch a fish before Cassie caught a trout, which the four acquired.

Trout Morphs

Marco, Jake and Cassie in trout morph

Just then, Tobias informed them that the Park Ranger Controllers were arriving and the four of them ran into the cave to hide. They were shortly joined by Tobias, who notified them that Visser Three had arrived on the site, along with additional reinforcements. As they debated on whether to terminate their mission, since they could no longer walk to the water's edge without being spotted, Cassie suggested that they morph into fish while in the cave; since trout could survive outside of water for a few minutes and was small enough for a red-tailed hawk to carry, they could morph in the cave and be flown into the water by Tobias. Once they were all deposited into the lake, they swam towards the Truck ship and were sucked in by the water pipes, where they found themselves in a water tank with a grate above them.

Jake and Cassie then demorphed and tried to open the grate but were unable to. Realizing that they were now trapped within the water tank, the four agreed that they did not want to be taken alive and thus decided that when the Truck ship docked with the Pool ship, they would assume battle morphs and go down fighting. However, Rachel, still in trout morph, quickly thought-spoke with Tobias, relaying their predicament to him. Since the Animorphs did not want to risk being taken alive, she asked him if there was anything he could do to destroy the Truck ship, as it would kill them in the process.

As the four of them treaded water in the water tank, Tobias had seized a Dracon beam and destroyed the Truck ship's controls, causing it to lose altitude. The careening Truck ship then hit a Bug fighter, which collided into the water tank and exploded, destroying the tank. As the water poured out like a waterfall, the four Animorphs fell out of the hole and began hurtling towards the ground. Marco then rapid-morphed into an osprey as the other three also rapid-morphed into their respective raptors. They regrouped with Tobias and Marco yelled that he had enough of being an Animorph; the five of them then flew into the woods as the Truck ship slammed into the ground, creating a concussive shockwave. The Yeerks then destroyed the grounded Truck ship to eliminate evidence as the Animorphs escaped the mountains and returned home.[4]

Andalite Distress Call

"I really hate to do this. I really hate to disappoint you all. But I was there at the construction site, same as all of you. I was there when Visser Three— What I mean is, if there's an Andalite who needs any thing, I'm there."
―Marco to the other Animorphs[src]

Marco was notified on a Monday that the Animorphs were holding a meeting at Rachel's house since it would empty at that time. Wanting to enforce security measures, Marco had everyone enter the house at separate times while also checking that they weren't being followed; for extra measure, Tobias flew above them to ensure they were safe. Grouping inside Rachel's room, Marco listened as Tobias and Cassie revealed that they both been experiencing the same dream about a voice calling to them from the ocean. Jake then pulled out a video cassette and asked Rachel if they could use her VCR, and the team went downstairs to the living room. Jake then inserted the tape and showed them footage from last night's news that he had recorded, which showed a metal fragment that had washed up on the beach. Jake pointed out that the writing on the metal fragment was the same writing he had seen when he entered Elfangor's ship to retrieve the morphing cube and that he believed the fragment was a piece of an Andalite ship. Just then, both Cassie and Tobias fainted. Marco then saw a brief flash of a vision himself before Cassie and Tobias regained consciousness. The two then revealed that the voice calling for them was stronger now and was definitely thought-speech, and concluded that it was an Andalite under the ocean who was sending out a distress signal. Rachel then declared that if there was an Andalite calling for help, she would definitely save him. She then called out Marco for his reluctance, although Marco stated that contrary to what they assumed, he would indeed participate in a rescue mission since Elfangor had died for them.

The team then headed to the beach to see if Cassie would experience another vision from being closer to the sea, although Marco complained that Controllers might also be there since they would've seen the news broadcast as well. When Rachel and Cassie wondered why Tobias and Cassie were the only ones on the team to receive the dreams, Jake theorized that the Andalite distress signal might also be accessible by those with morphing abilities; Marco clarified that despite all of them being able to morph, he believed that it was only Cassie and Tobias receiving them because Cassie had a talent for morphing while Tobias was trapped in morph. Tobias, who had been flying above them, then informed them that a group from The Sharing was also on the beach with flashlights and that "Chapman" and "Tom" were with them; additionally, Tobias had eavesdropped on their conversation and learned that the metal fragment was indeed part of an Andalite ship and that Visser Three was also receiving the visions, which Marco believed was because he had an Andalite host body. Just then, the Controllers noticed the Animorphs' footprints and began to follow them. The four human Animorphs then ran towards the water; as it was nighttime, the Controllers could not see them clearly, although they could see their silhouettes, prompting one of the Controllers to shoot at them with a handgun. Jake then told everyone to get into the water and morph into trout, despite Cassie pointing out that trout was a freshwater fish and the ocean was saltwater. Struggling with the burning sensation they felt in their gills, they were able to survive in the saltwater long enough to swim to another shore, where they demorphed and returned home safely.[23]

Attacked by Sharks

"Oh, man, I don't want to die as some fish. I don't want to die out here. My mom drowned. I'm going to die just like she did. My dad..." [...]
"Marco? You have to morph back to human. We'll keep you from drowning."
"Jake... buddy... You know I can't swim."
"I know, Marco. But we'll take care of you."
"Okay. Yeah, okay. Might as well die in my own body."
―Marco and Jake[src]

After school on Thursday, Marco joined Jake, Rachel and Cassie in taking the city bus to The Gardens so that they could acquire bottlenose dolphin morphs. Although Marco did not have much money, The Gardens had a promotion where a third admission ticket was sold for a dollar if two full-priced admission tickets were bought; since Jake and Rachel were buying tickets for themselves, Marco was able to purchase his for a dollar. As they made their way through the park, Jake looked at one of the rollercoasters and mentioned that the experience of riding it, which he once loved, now paled in comparison to his experiencing diving in falcon morph. Marco chimed in, stating that he'd always wanted to lift weights but no longer felt the desire to do so after morphing into a gorilla. The group approached the dolphin tank, where Marco marveled at the dolphins' movements before acquiring one of them.

On Friday, the Animorphs did not have school due to a teacher conference. They met at a river estuary in a park, since the river flowed into the ocean. Finding a spot that was isolated enough for them to morph, Rachel tied a Timex watch onto Tobias' leg so that he could keep track of time while the other four morphed into dolphins and swam from the river to the ocean. There, they spent forty-five minutes frolicking before sensing a humpback whale being attacked by multiple tiger sharks via their echolocation. The four of them charged forward and attacked the sharks, although Marco was nearly bitten in half, with his tail only hanging on by a thread. When the sharks left, Marco stated that he was going to die in the ocean just like his mother and began to mention his father before trailing off, nearly losing consciousness. Jake then urged him to demorph, and Marco reminded Jake that he did not know how to swim although he decided he would rather die in his own body. As Marco demorphed, the grateful whale carried him to the surface. Marco spent ten minutes recuperating on the back of the whale, dubbed the great one, who telepathically showed Cassie where the Andalite was. Marco then remorphed into a dolphin and the Animorphs returned to the river estuary.

The next day, Marco spent his Saturday morning at home and read a newspaper article about a treasure hunter and a marine biologist who were currently conducting diving operations in the ocean, which Marco believed was a front to allow Controllers to search the ocean for the Andalite. When he heard a knock on the door, Marco told his father, who was sitting blankly in front of the television, to put a bathrobe before he opened the door. He was surprised to see Cassie there and asked why she had come, stating that he was planning to spend the day with his father. Cassie then asked if she could come inside as she wanted to talk to Marco, but Marco instead had them go outside onto the breezeway. There, Cassie apologized for Marco nearly getting killed, and Marco replied that he had nearly been killed on prior missions; when Cassie retorted that the other missions were not her idea, Marco astutely remarked that Cassie's issue was that she did not like taking responsibility.

Marco then told her that as much as he did not want to get killed, bad things happened and that needed to get over it. In a moment of vulnerability, Marco shared how he was scared of dying while fighting the Yeerks while also being scared of what would happen if they didn't fight, and that he was afraid of being trapped in morph like Tobias. He added that he was also afraid of Visser Three and that he thought about Visser Three killing Elfangor at the construction site as well as their trip to the Yeerk pool every day. However, despite believing they should prioritize themselves and their families first, Marco stated that he would not feel like much of a human being if he did not continue trying to help rescue the Andalite. Cassie was apprehensive about making the decision to resume their rescue operation, to which Marco pointed out that her inability to decide was a decision in itself. Cassie remarked that Marco was actually very smart despite his annoying and humorous persona, and Marco quipped that she should keep it to herself as it would ruin her image. As she walked away, Marco mused that despite fighting Hork-Bajir and Taxxons, the incident with the sharks reminded him that Earth itself had some pretty scary creatures and that the Animorphs might end up being killed by an Earth animal someday instead of aliens.

Despite wanting to spent the day with his father, Marco went to Rachel's house to attend a meeting the Animorphs were having, where he informed them of the Controllers being in the vicinity of the ocean area. Due to the Andalite's location being too far away for a dolphin to travel within two hours, the plan was to become seagulls and fly out to a container ship traveling in that direction; they would then jump off the ship and morph into dolphins. Marco criticized the plan but then immediately agreed to participate, shocking the others. With the meeting concluded, the team dispersed and Marco returned home.[23]

Meeting Ax

"You're a kid? I mean, like a young person?"
"Are you the only one left? The only Andalite here?"
"Yes. I am alone. [...] I am Aximili-Esgarrouth-Isthill."
"Ax. Pleased to meet you."
―Marco and Aximili-Esgarrouth-Isthill[src]

On Sunday, the Animorphs went to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Clinic where seagulls were kept as patients and acquired them. Flying out of the barn, the four seagulls and Tobias flew towards the beach and across the ocean when they spotted a container ship called Newmar. The Animorphs all landed on the ship and found themselves a secluded spot away from the crew. Tobias then left them the watch before flying back to shore as the four human Animorphs demorphed. After an hour had passed, Jake announced that they were going to enter the ocean; since Marco did not know how to swim, Jake's plan was for him to morph into the dolphin on the deck so that the other three could pick him up and throw him into the water, although Rachel pointed out that Marco would weigh too much for them to support his weight. With the plan seemingly derailed, Cassie attempted to cancel the mission and return home, although Marco was still committed and suggested that he could half-morph near the railing so that the others could then push him into the sea. Before Cassie could object, Marco began to morph and was pushed into the sea when he was half-morphed, after which the other three jumped into the water and morphed dolphins as well.

They noticed a helicopter dragging a sensor through the water and realized that the Controllers were very close. The four Animorphs then dove into the water and swam to the ocean floor before proceeding onward, where they came across a Dome ship. Jake noticed a hatch and opened it, and the four dolphins entered an airlock that then began to drain the water. Having demorphed back to human, the Animorphs opened the door to the Dome ship's interior when they were knocked out by an Andalite. Coming to, Marco expressed that he hoped the Andalite in front of them was not Visser Three, prompting the Andalite to put his tail blade against Marco's neck before telling him not to utter that name. The Andalite, who was Elfangor's younger brother, was shocked to discover that they could morph and that Elfangor had given them the power, and was saddened to learn that Elfangor had been killed by Visser Three. He revealed that he was not allowed to fight on the front lines of war as he was too young by Andalite law to be a full-fledged warrior, prompting Marco to ask whether he was a kid, which the Andalite affirmed. Cassie then revealed that they were kids too before introducing the Animorphs to him. The Andalite then responded that his name was Aximili-Esgarrouth-Isthill, which Marco shortened to 'Ax'. Ax then asked who their Prince was, and when Marco, Rachel and Cassie looked at Jake, Ax pledged his loyalty to "Prince Jake" and offered to fight alongside them until he could return to his own people.

Ax then gave them a tour of the Dome ship and revealed that the Yeerk Empire had a habit of making the planets they colonized barren, much like the Yeerk homeworld, and only kept enough species to sustain the local host population; in addition, he added that were now only three species left in the galaxy who fought the Yeerks, and that Andalites would not come to Earth for another year or two. Jake was aghast at the realization that it would take two years for Andalite reinforcements to come and that the five kids were the only ones who were fighting the Yeerks on Earth, to which Ax chimed in that there were six of them now. As the Animorphs decided to make their leave, Marco asked Jake how they were going to get Ax out of there, to which Ax divulged that he had acquired an Earth sea creature that had previously wandered into the airlock.

Just then, the Animorphs noticed the silhouette of the Blade ship above them as they heard pinging noises. Marco informed the others that the noise was sonar pings, which he had recognized from the movie The Hunt for Red October. They all ran to the airlock chamber and started to morph as water filled the chamber. As they exited from the ship, Marco groaned when he noticed that Ax had morphed into a tiger shark. The six of them swam away just as depth charges shattered the reinforced glass of the Dome ship. During their escape, they noticed that a group of Taxxons had been dropped from the Blade ship, and Marco was shocked to discover that they could swim. The four dolphins, alongside Ax in shark morph, then fought and killed the Taxxons without much difficulty. They then continued to swim towards the shore, where Ax revealed that he had the mental ability to accurately keep track of their morphing time.

However, at that moment a large alien aquatic creature began to pursue them, which Ax confirmed was called a mardrut, a creature that lived one of the moons of the Andalite homeworld. The group realized that the mardrut was Visser Three in morph and pushed their bodies to continue swimming for over thirty minutes, although the Visser, who confirmed his identity by thought-speaking to them, gained on them. With the five of them unable to keep swimming, Rachel declared that it was time to turn around and fight; Ax chimed in that they couldn't win, to which Jake responded that he would rather die fighting than allow the Visser to kill them one by one in a chase. Just then, a group of wild whales, led by the great one, arrived and attacked the mardrut mercilessly, causing Visser Three to scream in rage and retreat. With their morphing time almost depleted, the group demorphed in the ocean. Cassie then notified them that the great one would ferry them back to shore, so they climbed on his back and relaxed as he traveled towards land. Once he got close enough, the team disembarked and remorphed into their aquatic morphs as they swam back to the river estuary.

The four Animorphs began to get dressed with some outer clothing they had hidden by the riverbank when Tobias appeared, and Cassie introduced Tobias and Ax to one another. Jake then wondered what they were going to do with Ax, as they had nowhere to keep him and he could not travel in town with them. Cassie offered to hide him on her farm, as it contained forests, meadows and woods that extended into the national forest. Marco chimed in that they still couldn't bring Ax to the farm in his Andalite state. Ax then declared that he needed to morph and approached Cassie.[23] Asking for permission,[24] Ax acquired Cassie, Marco, Jake and Rachel in succession. Marco then watched as Ax began to blend the four acquired DNA strands into one unique strand and wondered whether Ax was going to be biologically male or female since the four DNA samples Ax acquired contained two male DNA and two female DNA patterns. Cassie then told Marco to turn around and give Ax some privacy. Jake then told Ax that he had an extra pair of boxers and a T-shirt and told him to get dressed. The Animorphs then turned around to find Ax holding up the shirt as his bottoms and wearing the boxers on his head like a hat. Jake then asked if the morph was biologically male or female, and Ax replied that he had made it male since he himself was male. Jake then told Rachel and Cassie to turn around while he and Marco helped Ax get dressed properly. Ax struggled to walk on two legs and began to play with his words while verbally speaking, as it was his first time having a mouth. The Animorphs then walked Ax back to Cassie's farm.[23]

Fighting Crime

"Yeah, so then I do the gorilla thing, right? I save the old man. I'm the hero. I am Spider-Man. I am Wolverine. I am Batman—"
"Or at least Gorilla Boy."
"And what happens as I am playing Captain America? The old man unloads the gun at me. I totally lost the milk and my bag of M&M's."
―Marco and Rachel[src]

To be added

Mall Fiasco

"There's a bomb! BOMB!"
"There's a bomb! A bomb in the store! Run! Run! Everyone out! A BOMB!"
―Marco and Jake[src]

To be added

Morphing Trauma

To be added

Quarry Ambush

To be added

Joining the War

Learning the Truth

"Someday, somehow, in some way that I could not foresee, we would win this battle. Humans and Andalites together would defeat the Yeerks. And we would free all of their slaves. All of them."

Unlike the rest of the Animorphs, Marco was initially reluctant to join the fight against the Yeerks, not wanting to die and leaving his father truly alone. A couple of days before the two year anniversary of his mom’s disappearance, Marco told Jake that he’s had enough of the fighting and wanted to quit being an Animorph after their next mission.

However, during their mission, the Animorphs are captured and brought to a Yeerk pool ship, where they all meet Visser One, who Marco recognizes as his long-lost mother. After escaping the pool ship, Marco realizes that he now has a reason to fight the Yeerks, to save his mother, and fully joins the fight with the other Animorphs.

Detaining Jake

To be added

Meeting the Ellimist

Return to the Yeerk Pool

To be added

Visit to Alternate Future

To be added

Battle at the EGS Tower

To be added

Trouble with Ax

To be added

Quest for the Pemalite Crystal

Meeting the Chee

To be added

Paternal Concerns

To be added

Matcom Infiltration

To be added

Death and Resurrection

To be added

Jeremy Jason McCole Investigations

To be added

Free Hork-Bajir

To be added

Zone 91 Infiltration

To be added

Royan Island Mission

Visit to Underwater Base

To be added

Hammerhead Time

To be added

Reunion with Visser One

To be added

Yeerk Ethics

To be added

Battle for Leera

To be added

In the Time of Dinosaurs

To be added

Rift with Cassie

To be added

David Debacle

To be added

Further Missions

To be added

Visser vs. Visser

"We take out Visser One. We take out Visser Three. We leave the Yeerks believing they've erased the free Hork-Bajir colony. The free Hork-Bajir end up much safer; the Yeerks end up leaderless."

While ditching school one day, Marco realizes that Visser One is hiding out in an office building. Returning later that night with Ax and Tobias, they discover that she was demoted to Sub-Visser rank and she is being hunted by the Council of Thirteen after Visser Three branded her a traitor.

Realizing that they can use this opportunity to kill both Vissers at the same time, Marco makes a deal with the former Visser One – trade the location of the Hork-Bajir Valley, which the former Visser is looking for, in exchange for an opportunity to eliminate Visser Three. When Marco's mother arrives at what she believes to be the Hork-Bajir Valley, a fight breaks out between Visser One's forces and Visser Three's. Marco takes the opportunity and tells his mother that he loves her, revealing his identity to Visser One, before knocking her over the mountain to her apparent death.

Chase Through Time

To be added

Interim Leader

To be added

Additional Operations

To be added

Morphing Problems

To be added

Aiding Visser One

Providing Assistance

"If you wanted me dead it would be easy. You could take me, infest me, and have all of my friends within a few hours. So you need me. This is about your little personality conflict with Visser Three. You're desperate. But you won't give me up to Visser Three because you hate him more than you hate us."
"I once thought you were too soft, too gentle."
"Yeah, well, things change."
―Marco and Edriss 562[src]
This section needs a rewrite

After being the best man at his father’s wedding, where his father married Marco’s math teacher Nora Robbinette, Marco receives a phone call from Visser One, requesting for the Animorphs to stage an attack to discredit Visser Three. After performing the attack, the Animorphs take Visser One to an unknown cave and Marco forces Visser One to free his mother. However, Eva, Marco's mother, sympathizes with Visser One since she too is a mother and allows Visser One to infest her again to prevent Visser Three's open war plan and protect Visser One's human children.

Speaking with his Mother

To be added

Continued Campaigns

To be added


Saving his Father

To be added

Faking his Death

"Suddenly, reality hit. I was dead. And this was the end... of school, of dates, of video games. Of everything normal. The kid in that photo had prepared his last frozen pizza dinner. Had gone to his last math class. Had seen his last movie at the Cineplex. That kid would never even hang out in his own backyard again. Because this wasn't his home anymore. He had no home. He'd made the necessary sacrifice."
This section requires expansion

When Marco's father, Peter, gets into a project involving Z-space, it attracts the attention of the Yeerks. Despite knowing the risks of saving his father from becoming a Controller, Marco cannot bring himself to let it happen and rescues his dad, revealing everything about the Animorphs and the battle against the Yeerks, including his mother's existence. The Chee use their holographic abilities to fake Marco and his father's death from Controllers and Marco and his father relocate to the hidden Hork-Bajir Valley. However, Marco neglects to rescue Nora, allowing the Yeerks to infest her, mentally remarking that a part of him wanted her out of their lives.[25]

Killing Visser One

"I slammed my foot on the still-wriggling worm. And it was clear... was clear that Visser One's journey had ended."

Soon after, the Animorphs discover that Visser One is back on Earth and go on a mission to the Yeerk pool. There, Marco manages to rescue his mother and kill Visser One. After being reunited with Eva, Peter asks Marco if Nora can be saved, prompting Marco to lie to his father that Nora was always a Controller and that the Yeerks had placed her in his life to keep an eye on him. Peter accepts the lie, with Marco musing that his conscience is heavy with the permanent damage he has wrought with his lie, although it was a decision he chose to make in order to keep his family together.

Operation 9466

To be added


Identities Exposed

To be added

Recruiting Disabled Children

To be added

Trip to the Capitol

To be added

Destroying the Yeerk Pool

To be added

Seizing the Pool Ship

To be added



"We Animorphs and the newly minted Prince Aximili, with our prisoner, landed Ax's official liaison ship, a sleek Fast-Courier, right in the middle of the Mall in Washington. Not a mall, the Mall, a sort of open green space with the Capitol Building at one end, the Smithsonian Institution and various government buildings on both sides, and the obelisk of the Washington Monument at the far end. We called ahead, not wanting to terrify anyone. There were roughly a thousand cops and twice that many newspeople waiting for us. It was, as Marco said, a "shiver-my-spine moment." A sea of microphones and video cameras and flashbulbs. Ax and Jake, and to a lesser extent Marco and I, gave a sort of brief explanation of what had been happening, and where things stood now. Needless to say, it was kind of a big news day."

To be added


"My career was going pretty well. I was past the point of being a fad, anyway. I'd done seven appearances total on Letterman and Leno, plus several times each on Jon Stewart and Conan. The Today Show, Good Morning America, Oprah? Been there. Bill O'Reilly called me a genuine American hero. [...] I had a three-year deal with Pepsi, plus smaller deals with Alamo Rent A Car and Gap/Old Navy. You would not believe the money. So, a year after the end, I was seventeen and rich from book deals and product endorsements and acting contracts. I had a beach house in Santa Barbara (close to Hollywood, but with less traffic) and an apartment in New York. I owned a canary-yellow Viper, a red Maserati, and a desert-camouflage Humvee. I dated girls who wouldn't have looked at me before. I ate in cool restaurants. And maybe you're expecting me to say it was all an empty experience, that my life wasn't all that great, but you know what? I was happy."
This section requires expansion

After the war, Marco goes on to become a rich celebrity, using his status to write books, appear on many talk shows, endorse products, and perform as a regular actor, one of his roles being Nick Lang, a "wisecracking mutant superhero sort of guy who can turn into animals" and doing commercials. Unlike the rest of the Animorphs, Marco lived extravagantly, buying a mansion in Santa Barbara, having many dates with supermodels, and owning many expensive cars.[26]


"I had nine million four hundred and thirty-two thousand dollars in my Merrill Lynch account. Mostly in stocks, some bonds. My TV show was doing fine, winning its time slot, although viewership in the critical demographic was falling off a little. I had a girlfriend. She was a model/actress. She was not, shall we say, a genius. But she was beautiful and sweet and about a foot taller than me. I had seven cars. A butler named Wetherbee. (Actually his name was McPherson, but I liked the sound of 'Wetherbee.') I had two maids. I had a time-share deal on a jet. I had the house in Santa Barbara, the pied-a-terre in New York and was looking at a little place in Tuscany."

At nineteen years old, Marco was still living in his extravagant lifestyle, having at least 9,432,000 dollars in stocks and bonds and his television show still performing well. Marco had a girlfriend, a beautiful and sweet model/actress.

A New Mission
"Half a year went by, but it seemed longer. I had brought along some DVD's but there are only so many times you can watch Airplane!, especially when you have to explain every joke to a former Andalite. It became obvious that this was going to be a long trip. You can't just go toodling around a billion square light-years and find what you're looking for. In the end, even after many months, we didn't find the Blade ship. They found us. I was manning the sensor station (and using the ship's computers to play Tomb Raider V), when I spotted the orange squiggle indicating an unknown ship within range."

When Jake tells Marco about a mission to save Ax, Marco agrees to come, but only after yelling at Jake, and telling him that he cannot undo his past mistakes, and that, just as during the war, they will only succeed if they follow his instincts, no matter how "crazy, reckless and ruthless."

After many months traveling in space in "The Rachel", Marco, along with the others aboard the vessel, finds the Blade Ship and encounters “The One”. Jake comments on Marco's earlier call to be "crazy, reckless and ruthless," and, with a smile that Marco notes makes him look like Rachel, orders them to ram the Blade ship.


"I'm a joker. I'm a comedian. That's how I deal with life. See, I've always believed that to some extent you get to decide for yourself what your life will be like. You can either look at the world and say, "Oh, isn't it all so tragic, so grim, so awful." Or you can look at the world and decide that it's mostly funny."

Throughout the war, Marco always maintains a sense of humor because he believes you have to decide whether you think life is tragedy or comedy, and he chooses to look for the joke in life. Because of this, Marco is able to crack jokes and make sarcastic remarks in the midst of battle just as easily as when he is chilling in the barn with his best friend Jake and the others. Marco is also very clever, and is good at thinking strategically. He was also the one who came up with the name "Animorphs" in the first book.

Marco is forever the cautious one, and at the start of the series he was the most reluctant to fight in the war. A major reason was he felt his dad was still suffering over the loss of his mother Eva, and wouldn't be able to bear it if he lost his son as well. Marco stayed in the war in honor of Jake's brother, but the stress began to get to him. He soon confessed to Jake that he had decided to quit, but that changed when he made a tragic discovery - his mother had not drowned two years earlier, but instead was infested by the Yeerk Visser One. Her death had been faked so that the Visser could use her body as a host. Marco's desire to save his mother and reunite his family was more than enough to make him continue the fight.

Marco has been called the most ruthless member to the Animorphs, often looking at the big picture and willing to make sacrifices in order to secure a win. This is in contrast with Cassie, who always considers emotions and morals in the equation, even when it comes to her enemies. They sometimes get on each other's nerves because of this. However Cassie has gotten through to Marco on occasion, sensing that he sometimes uses his humor to mask the pain he feels over his family situation. Marco desperately wants to save his mother, and yet he knows that in order to win the war he may have to destroy her.

Relationships with the other Animorphs


"Jake, who is Rachel's cousin, is our sort-of leader. Not because he asked to be. It's probably because he'd never ask to be. You know – he's one of those tiresomely dutiful, levelheaded guys. If you met Jake, you'd understand why we turn to him. Call it charisma. Something about Jake commands respect. Not from me, of course. He's been my best friend forever. I was with him when he was nine and ate an entire pie on a bet and ended up blowing blueberries for an hour."
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Jake and Marco have been friends since their childhood. Although their friendship is tested at times, they generally retain a strong bond. Towards the end of the series this begins to deteriorate, as Jake sinks into depression and Marco regains his family. After the war, Marco and Jake retain their friendship, and Jake recruits Marco for their final mission.


"Rachel is your basic psycho-babe. And I mean that in a nice way. She's a tall, willowy, supermodelesque blond. You might think she was a mall-rat airhead – until you called her an airhead. Then, after she removed your left kidney, you'd realize your mistake. Rachel's a great person to have on your side in a fight. The only problem I have with her is that she's always looking for a fight."

Rachel and Marco's relationship is characterized by their insults and banter. They generally side together on group votes, as both are more interested in pragmatism than ethics. Their similar personalities are beneficial in understanding how the other thinks, but also serves as the basis for their frequent fights. They dated in the alternate universe of Back to Before.


"I remind everyone that we have been in morph for thirty of your minutes. Dinner is scheduled to be served in twenty-five more of your minutes."
"Yes, Marco."
"They're everyone's minutes, Ax. They're not our minutes. They're just minutes. Just minutes. Okay? We're on Earth, you're on Earth, they are everyone's minutes."
"Now we have been in morph for thirty-one of your minutes."
Ax and Marco[src]

At first Marco remains distant from Ax, but the two develop a close relationship. Ax's dry sense of humor becomes more obviously influenced by Marco as the series goes on. After Marco's cover is blown and he has to leave his regular life, he goes to live with Ax at his scoop, and the two bond over electronics and soap operas.


"That night in the construction site, he was just this kind of dweeby kid I barely knew. He liked Jake because Jake once kept some guys from beating him up. To be honest with you, I don't even remember what Tobias looked like back then. Now, of course, he looks like a fierce, angry bird of prey. There's a downside to the morphing power we have. A time limit of two hours. Stay more than two hours in a morph, and you stay forever. That's why Tobias was flying overhead, with his wide wings catching the warm updrafts. Tobias is a hawk. A red-tail hawk, to be exact. I guess he always will be. I tease Tobias sometimes. What happened to him scares me."
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At the beginning of the series the two aren't close, as Marco seems annoyed by Tobias's presence in Jake's life and frequently insults or hassles him. Eventually a strong camaraderie between them develops.


"I took a good, long look at Cassie. See, there was this little episode with Cassie. She quit the Animorphs because I guess she had problems with some of the stuff we have to do. She came back, of course. But since then I'd felt a little shaky around her. Cassie has way too many morals and ethics. She's always wondering whether something is right or wrong. Me, I just wonder "will it work?" or not. I was thinking of something snide to say to Cassie, but I decided to keep my mouth shut. Cassie has saved my life more than once. You cut a person a lot of slack when they've saved your life."

Cassie describes Marco as cute, but not her type. Although they are generally on good terms, Marco is often impatient with Cassie's morality.


"Now David, another kid not very different from any of us, had been dragged into this nightmare reality of great power and greater fear. Maybe I didn't like him. But I felt sorry for him."

Marco disliked David from the beginning, and voted against giving him the morphing power when the Animorphs were faced with that decision. The tension between Marco and David is strong even before David turns traitorous.


Book Morphs

Morph Book Acquired
Silverback Gorilla (Big Jim) The Invasion
Osprey The Visitor
Wolf The Encounter
Bottlenose Dolphin The Message
American Lobster The Predator
Black Garden Ant
Cockroach The Capture
Mouse The Andalite's Gift
Termite The Secret
Great Horned Owl
Irish Setter The Android
Wolf Spider
Brown Bat
Spider Monkey (unusable; acquired by alternate self) The Forgotten
Jaguar (unusable; acquired by alternate self)
Llama The Reaction
Racehorse The Unknown
Parrot (green) The Escape
Hammerhead Shark
Mole The Underground
Mosquito The Decision
Tyrannosaurus Rex (unusable; Sario Rip morph) In the Time of Dinosaurs
King Cobra (Spawn) The Discovery
Flea The Threat
Rhinoceros The Solution
Giant Anteater The Suspicion
Baby Ringed Seal The Extreme
Polar Bear (Nanook)
Giant Squid The Exposed
Chimpanzee The Experiment
Eel The Sickness
Grizzly Bear (unusable; acquired by alternate self) Elfangor's Secret
Human (Mr. Grant) The Reunion
Mountain Goat
Hork-Bajir The Prophecy
Squirrel The Proposal
Poodle (Euclid)
Orca (Swoosh) The Mutation
Cheetah The Weakness
Honeybee The Other
Hork-Bajir The Unexpected
North American Beaver The Resistance
German Shepherd (Champ; acquired but never used) The Diversion
Mallard Drake The Absolute
Human (female; State Governor)
Dragonfly The Answer
Eagle The Beginning

Television Show Morphs

Morph Episode Acquired
Rat My Name is Jake, Part 2
Skink The Underground
Human (Mall cop) (never used) On the Run
Butterfly The Message
Cockroach The Escape
Wolf The Alien
Llama The Reaction
Mouse My Name is Erek
Duck Changes, Part 1
German Shepherd
Lizard Changes, Part 3
Hawk (off-screen) The Front

Books Narrated by Marco


  • He has the WAA username Cassie98, which he uses to annoy Jake in instant messaging by pretending to be Cassie, although he likely has another account for primary use.
  • Cassie describes Marco as having "incredible eyelashes."
  • Marco is one of the characters whose battle morph is often forgotten for merchandising and illustration purposes; although he very rarely uses anything besides his gorilla morph in regular battle, he was illustrated morphing into a wolf on the cover of Megamorphs #1, and a cobra in Megamorphs #4, while the other characters were all shown morphing into their preferred battle morphs.
  • The cover of The Predator is very different in international covers. On the U.S cover, Marco morphs a Silverback Gorilla. While on the U.K cover, he morphs a lobster.
  • From the Anibase: Want to know the real reason Marco got a haircut in The Android? One day, K.A.'s editor, Tonya Alicia Martin, called K.A. up and said, "We have this really cute Marco model, but he has short hair" -- much shorter than Marco's hair in the books. K.A. agreed to give Marco a trim and had fun having the other characters tease him throughout the book -- and Marco has had short hair ever since.
  • In 1999, four different transforming toys of Marco were made.
    • Two of Marco's Transformers that were sold in stores turned into a Gorilla and a Fire Beetle, respectively
    • The third transformer, a Tri-Rex, was a Tyrannosaurus Rex figure made up of three separate Jake, Cassie, and Marco figures.
    • In 1999 Taco Bell released a transforming toy where Marco turns into a hammerhead shark.
  • Marco frequently uses the word "insane."
  • Because of many of his interactions with Jake and Ax, large numbers of LGBT readers considered Marco to be same-gender attracted, but not overtly due to Scholastic censorship. In response to being asked about this speculation in a discussion about representation, Michael Grant wrote on Twitter that "Marco was bi[sexual]."


Elfangor eye closeup andalite chron "Someone took a picture of me? Not cool. Do you see what I'm wearing? I'm Spandex-boy. Totally not cool."

The image gallery for Marco may be viewed here


  1. The Unknown
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Escape
  3. 3.0 3.1 The Beginning
  4. 4.0 4.1 The Encounter
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 The Visitor
  6. 6.0 6.1 The Andalite Chronicles is said to take place in 1976 and states it is 21 years before Elfangor met the Animorphs, meaning the Animorphs met Elfangor in 1997. In #53, Jake states they were 13 when they met Elfangor, placing their year of birth c.1984
  7. Stabbed in the heart while in gorilla morph, although he was resurrected when Erek King restarted his heart
  8. 8.0 8.1 The Forgotten
  9. The Discovery
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 VISSER
  11. The Revelation
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 The Predator
  13. The Alien
  14. Marco was 13 in 1997, placing the events of him being nine in 1993.
  15. The Extreme
  16. Eva disappeared two years prior to Marco becoming an Animorph in 1997, placing Eva's disappearance in 1995.
  17. The Andalite Chronicles is said to take place 10 years after the 1966 Yeerk exodus of The Hork-Bajir Chronicles and 21 years before Elfangor met the Animorphs. This places it in 1976, meaning the Animorphs met Elfangor in 1997.
  18. The Answer
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 19.3 19.4 19.5 19.6 The Invasion
  20. Back to Before
  21. The Stranger
  22. Jake, Rachel and Marco had not yet learned how to morph clothing by the time they attacked the Yeerk Pool, which was on the same day Rachel and Marco acquired their first morphs, meaning they would've been nude when they demorphed during their escape. The graphic novel rectifies this by giving the Animorphs a day between acquiring their morphs and attacking the pool as well as adding a new scene where Rachel, Jake and Marco are confirmed to have learned how to morph clothing in the interim.
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 23.3 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named 4TM
  24. When Ax decides to acquire the four human Animorphs, he does not share this idea with the others; instead, he puts his hand on Cassie's face and says "With your permission." However, before Cassie can realize what he is doing and can even consent, he begins to acquire her. The others realize he is acquiring her before Ax starts to acquire them without asking for permission. However, the rest of the series continues to treat it as if Ax had received everyone's consent before acquiring them.
  25. The Revelation
  26. The Beginning
Animorphs Jake | Rachel | Tobias | Cassie | Marco | Ax | David
Auxiliary Animorphs James | Collette | Timmy | Kelly | Craig | Erica | Julio | Liam | Tricia | Jessie | Judy | Ray