|This article is written from a Real World point of view.|
Sometimes weird things happen to people. Ask Jake. He could tell you about the night he and his friends saw a strange light in the sky that seemed to be heading right for them. That was the night five normal kids learned that humanity is under a silent attack -- and were given the power to fight back.
Now Jake, Rachel, Cassie, Tobias, and Marco can transform into some of the most dangerous creatures on Earth. And they must use that power to outsmart an evil greater than anything the world has ever seen. . . .
The story begins with a hawk flying, and a voice over telling the reader that they cannot tell anyone who they really are, because of an unknown danger.
Young teenagers Jake and Marco leave the mall one evening. On the way out, they meet Tobias, and later Rachel and Cassie, who are together, and decide to walk home together. While taking a shortcut through an abandoned construction site, an alien spacecraft lands nearby. The badly injured alien pilot, an Andalite named Prince Elfangor, emerges from the ship and telepathically explains to the kids that he is dying, and the Earth is being invaded in secret by a race of aliens called the Yeerks, a slug-like parasitic species who infest species through their ear canals and take complete control of the human's body, turning them into what is called a Controller. The human controllers are still self-aware but the Yeerk in their head has complete control over their body and what they say and do. Elfangor tells them that more Andalites will not come to Earth for a year or more, and by then, Earth will already be completely taken over. To combat the Yeerks, he gives the humans morphing ability: the power to become any creature they touch by absorbing the creature's DNA. Elfangor warns them to never stay beyond two hours in a morph, or they will be trapped in that form forever. The Yeerks, led by Visser Three, the only Andalite-Controller in existence, arrive to kill Elfangor and eliminate all traces of him and his ship. As they arrive, Elfangor explains to the children (in private thought speak) what the aliens accompanying Visser Three are, humans which have already been enslaved by the Yeerks, Hork-Bajir, a fearsome-looking but peaceful race enslaved by the Yeerks, resembling large lizards with blades on their arms and legs, and Taxxons, a forever hungry race which willingly allied with the Yeerks, resembling giant centipedes standing on their bottom half. After taunting Elfangor, who remains defiant, Visser Three morphs into a giant alien and eats him alive, while his army destroys the ship. The five human teenagers hide and watch, but are discovered and chased by the human and Hork-Bajir Controllers. A voice orders the Hork-Bajir to not bother taking them alive, but the group manages to escape, shaken but more or less unhurt.
The next morning, Tobias visits Jake and informs him that the previous night was not just a dream; he had already morphed his pet cat, Dude. He morphs in front of Jake to prove it, and tells him that the animal's instincts are also part of the morph. Even after witnessing him morph, Jake is reluctant to use the power to fight the Yeerks, but Tobias wants him to be their leader. He convinces Jake to morph. Jake reluctantly acquires and morphs his family's pet dog, Homer, and they are nearly discovered by Jake's brother, Tom. Tobias leaves, and tells Jake to meet the others at Cassie's farm. Before going, Jake finds out Tom is no longer a member of the basketball team, and has joined a new club, the Sharing.
Jake meets Rachel, Marco and Tobias at Cassie's farm, where he shows them a newspaper article about teenagers setting off fireworks at the construction site. Marco voices an extreme reluctance to fight the Yeerks, due to his mother already being dead, while Cassie is revealed to have already morphed a horse. As she demorphs, a police officer arrives, nearly seeing her and informs them that he is investigating the story about the teenagers setting off fireworks in the abandoned construction site the previous night. He asks if they know anything about it, and the five of them realize that the police officer is a Controller. He also seems to recognize Jake, asking him if he is Tom's brother, which Jake confirms. He then tells them that he is also a member of the Sharing, and invites them to join it. After he leaves, they decide to hold off on fighting the Yeerks for the time being.
Later that day, at Jake's house, Tom expresses a similar interest in the teenagers at the construction site and presses Jake and Marco for information. Marco realizes—much to Jake's anger—that Tom is also a Controller. Tom invites Jake and Marco to the next meeting of The Sharing, which is holding a meeting with a bonfire on the beach. Tobias arrives, having morphed a hawk, and tells Jake and Marco that Elfangor telepathically sent him flashes of pictures before they left, and he is trying to decipher them. So far he has figured out that the Yeerks, in their natural state live in a Yeerk Pool, and must return every three days to absorb Kandrona rays. They realize that two people they suspect to be Controllers have invited them to a meeting of the Sharing, and decide to investigate it to see if the Yeerks are involved.
That night, the group attends the bonfire. When the full members go off to a separate meeting, the kids regroup, and Jake morphs his dog, Homer, to go investigate. In dog morph, he spies on the members, and quickly determines for certain that The Sharing is a front organization for the Yeerks to recruit new hosts. He also discovers that their assistant principal Chapman is the leader of The Sharing and a human-Controller, and was the voice directing the Hork-Bajir at the construction site. As he returns to the group, he sees Cassie looking for him, and she is spotted by the policeman, who questions why she is at a full members only meeting. She quickly comes up with the excuse that she was looking for her dog (Jake) but he remains suspicious. Regrouping, Jake tells them what he has found out, and they agree to fight the Yeerks, with Jake vowing to save his brother.
The next day, Jake morphs into a green anole lizard to spy on Chapman, and discovers that there is an entrance to the Yeerk Pool—a large, underground control center where the Yeerks can feed and recuperate—in their school.
After discussing their idea to go to the Yeerk Pool to rescue Tom, the teenagers (minus Tobias), newly christened as Animorphs (from Animal Morphers) by Marco, head to The Gardens, a large zoo and amusement park, to acquire some new, battle-capable morphs. Marco acquires his primary battle morph, a gorilla, after which he and Jake are separated from Rachel and Cassie by security, who chase them. They steal a golf cart, escape into the tiger's cage, where Jake acquires a tiger, before getting out, reuniting with Rachel and Cassie, and leaving. Rachel is later revealed to have acquired an elephant.
That evening, Tom acts suspiciously at the dinner table, and eventually leaves without saying where he is going. Realizing he is going to the pool, the Animorphs decide to infiltrate the Yeerk Pool in order to rescue him, but find that Cassie has been kidnapped by the policeman-Controller. With no time to plan a strategy, the four remaining Animorphs head into the Yeerk Pool. They discover how large it really is, and find many humans and Hork-Bajir, including Tom, in cages. Jake and Marco are found by a few Controllers, but they are saved by Rachel, in elephant morph. Jake and Marco morph tiger and gorilla, respectively, and the three attack the cages and free some of the prisoners, including Tom. Tobias and Jake manage to rescue Cassie, but as they and the free hosts run for the exit they are find themselves outnumbered and outgunned by Visser Three and his Yeerks. Visser Three morphs into a giant eight headed creature and attempts to burn them, while the Controllers try to recapture the people. As many of the escaping hosts are either recaptured or burned, Tom attempts to attack the visser, but is knocked aside and recaptured. In the end, Jake, Rachel, Marco, and Cassie barely escape along with one woman who was a former Controller, and Cassie reveals, sadly, that the policeman-Controller was killed.
That night, Tom returns home, still a Controller. Tobias arrives, having managed to escape, but has stayed in morph too long and is now stuck in morph as a red-tailed hawk. Jake is upset, but promises to keep fighting the Yeerks until the Andalites arrive.
- Visser Three
- Iniss 226 (Chapman's Yeerk)
- Temrash 114 (Tom's Yeerk)
- Various Hork-Bajir, Taxxon and human-Controllers
- Big Jim
- Loren (Mentioned Only)
- Eva (Mentioned Only)
- Peter (Mentioned Only)
- Walter (Mentioned Only)
- Michelle (Mentioned Only)
- Abandoned Construction Site
- Elfangor's fighter
- Wildlife Rehabilitation Clinic
- The Gardens
- Yeerk Pool
- Escafil device
- Andalite fighter
- Blade ship
- Dracon beams
- Kandrona (Mentioned Only)
- The Animorphs meet Elfangor who tells them about the Yeerk Invasion and grants them the power to morph.
- Elfangor is killed by Visser Three soon after.
- When Jake informs his older brother Tom that he didn't make the basketball team, Tom reveals that he quit playing basketball and joined The Sharing.
- The Animorphs attend The Sharing with Tom, There Jake discovers (In dog morph) that his older brother is in fact a controller and The Sharing is a scam created by the Yeerks in order to obtain new hosts. The Animorphs also discover that their vice principal is a controller.
- The Animorphs visit The Gardens and acquire elephant, gorilla, and tiger morphs.
- The Animorphs decide to take their first mission to the Yeerk Pool to rescue people from becoming controllers.
- The Animorphs discover Taxxons and Hork-Bajir prisoners as well.
- The Animorphs succeed on rescuing the human prisoner but Jake is forced to abandon Tom when the latter leaves to fight Visser Three.
- The next day, Tobias visits Jake in hawk morph and reveals that he's trapped in morph due to staying in morph past two hours.
|Morpher||Morphs acquired||Morphs used|
|Jake||Golden Retriever (Homer), Green Anole Lizard, Siberian Tiger||Golden Retriever (Homer), Green Anole Lizard, Siberian Tiger|
|Rachel||African Elephant||African Elephant|
|Tobias||Cat (Dude), Red-Tailed Hawk||Cat (Dude), Red-Tailed Hawk (becomes trapped in morph)|
|Marco||Silverback Gorilla (Big Jim)||Silverback Gorilla (Big Jim)|
|Visser Three||--||Antarean Bogg, Unnamed creature with eight arms, legs, and heads, capable of breathing fire|
Differences from Original Novel
- After Jake morphs into Homer, there is an additional scene where Tom enters the room and asks Tobias why Homer is wearing Jake's clothes.
- When Cassie arrives to greet her friends in horse morph, she doesn't say "Hi kids" in the graphic novel the same way she does in the novel.
- At the Sharing's members meeting, Iniss 226 is mentioned by name.
- When Tom attacks Visser Three in the Yeerk Pool, in the original book he says "No, you filthy creep, you aren't going to win this time." In this graphic novel, he says "No, you filthy creepy monster, you aren't going to win this time."
- When Elfangor reveals that he's dying, he's shedding tears even though it's impossible for an Andalite to shed tears in their true form in the novels.
- How 'Animorphs' Transformed Into a Graphic Novel (Hollywood Reporter)
- The Invasion release day October 6
- Graphix Out Loud video with Chris Grine, October 6
- Comic Con at home with K.A. Applegate, Michael Grant, and Chris Grine, 7/23/20
- B&N Live with K.A. Applegate, Michael Grant and Chris Pine, 11/5/20