TrekInk: Star Trek/Planet of the Apes Christmas Special

IDW Publishing and BOOM! Studios will celebrate the holiday season by releasing the first issue of a five-issue mini-series crossover event featuring Star Trek and Planet of the Apes. While we wait for The Primate Directive #1, please join TrekMovie for a look at Trek and Apes of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come.

A television series, films, animation, tie-in books, comics from several publishers, magazines, soundtracks, toys, coloring books, book-and-record sets, reference books, fan fiction, fan art, cosplay and more. Sound familiar? This is the Trek universe we live in and we are not alone. With some minor modifications in order and magnitude, and the addition of a literary point of origin, this also describes the Planet of the Apes universe, about to collide with Star Trek this December. Presented here for your education, amusement and/or consternation, an epic look at Trek and Apes (mostly Apes) past, present and future. When finished, you’ll be fully prepared for The Primate Directive.

Apes of Christmas Past
Planet of the Apes was originally conceived as a science fiction novel. Written by Pierre Boulle in 1963, La Planète des Singes, was almost immediately translated and published in English for US and UK readers, and produced as a film in 1968.

La Planète des Singes by Pierre Boulle, First Edition, 1963

Boulle also wrote the novel that inspired another celebrated film, The Bridge on the River Kwai. Memory of his work seems to have faded over time, overshadowed by the media franchise inspired by Planet of the Apes, but a recent article published by the BBC (click on the photo below) reminds us about this very interesting writer.

The French spy who wrote The Planet of the Apes by Hugh Schofield, BBC News, Paris

Planet of the Apes by Pierre Boulle, First US paperback edition, 1964

If you haven’t read the novel, take a listen at the BBC Radio adaptation of Planet of the Apes which is available on YouTube.

Pierre Boulle’s Planet Of The Apes – BBC Radio Adaptation 1 of 7

The movie starring Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans, James Whitmore, James Daly and Linda Harrison, was released in 1968. Movie fans were enthralled by the apes and the twist ending, fueling interest in the film sequels that followed. The screenplay by Michael Wilson and Rod Serling is the subject of some controversy with a more in-depth view at Rod Serling Memorial Foundation website. Both articles are interesting reading.

Planet of the Apes, 1-sheet poster, 1968

All four of the Apes film sequels were novelized. The last of these novelizations was written by David Gerrold, a writer well known to Trekkies. Those were the good old days of 95-cent paperbacks. A short-lived television series (14 episodes) which aired 1974-75 and an equally short-lived cartoon series (13 episodes) from 1975-76, also spawned several novelizations. You can find a list of the Apes books at Tony’s Trading.

Planet of the Apes paperback ad

Battle for the Planet of the Apes by David Gerrold, 1973

Return to the Planet of the Apes was the title of the animated cartoon. It looks like most, if not all, of the 13 episodes are available on YouTube and elsewhere for your entertainment.

Return to the Planet of the Apes cartoon, 1975

Of course, there were soundtracks, including Wonderlands Records “Theme From Star Trek/Them from Planet of the Apes TV Series” with the memorable Apes’ Shuffle. Click on the embedded audio track below the album cover to listen. You must listen over and over again until The Primate Directive #1 is released!

Wonderland Records WLP 301, 1975

Apes’ Shuffle by the Jeff Wayne Space Shuttle

British toy company, Palitoy, produced a series of action figures for Star Trek and Planet of the Apes which shared advertising, forever tying these two franchises together, along with Space: 1999. I don’t know much about the toys, but the art for this ad is sensational.

Palitoy advertisement, 1975

And let there be fan fiction! Well, I only found a few examples of Star Trek/Planet of the Apes fan fiction, but one of them is quite good and you won’t have to track down an obscure fanzine to read it thanks to the intertubes.

Berengaria #6, 1975

In 1975, Paul Gadzikowski wrote, Trek to the Planet of the Apes, which was published in Berengaria #6. The story features a character named Gil Paul. Anyone recognize the name? Perhaps he’s a character from Australian television? In any event, I was confused, but the story has some amusing moments.

Alnitah #5, 1977

The fanzine Alnitah #5, published in 1977, contains The Six-Million Credit Space Trek written by Margaret Austin and illustrated by Michael Eason. This story is a comic strip mash-up of Star Trek, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Space: 1999, Mission: Impossible, UFO, The Bionic Man, Lost in Space, and yes, you got it, but just barely, Planet of the Apes.

Alnitah #5 Trek and Apes

Side-Trekked #1, 1994 (Reprint)

In 1994, Star Trek novelist Dayton Ward wrote Evol-Q-Tion, a novella published in Side-Trekked #1 with illustrations by John Goldie. Ward used characters from the Planet of the Apes television series in his novella which you can read at Ward’s story is a straightforward Next Generation tale and one of the better fan-fic stories I’ve read.

Illustration for Evol-Q-Tion by John Goldie

Yes, there are Planet of the Apes comics. Lots of them. More than 180, not including a multitude of reprints and translations. Curiously, the first comics were manga, published in Japan, and never translated or reprinted for US readers. The first US comic was an adaptation of the second film, Beneath the Planet of the Apes, published by Gold Key in 1970. You can read the comic over at Hunter’s Planet of the Apes Archive. In 1974 Marvel began publishing Planet of the Apes tales in magazine format, in the US and UK. You can read many of the Marvel comics that were published, as well as other comics-related material at Hunter’s Archive.

Saru no Wakusei (Adventure King), 1968

Beneath the Planet of the Apes, Gold Key, 1970

Planet of the Apes #1, Marvel, 1974

Planet of the Apes, Power Records, Book and Record Set, 1974

Star Trek comics fans are familiar with the Power Records book & record sets, comics that you could read along with an audio tale on a record or cassette tape. Planet of the Apes book & record sets featuring adaptations of the films are also available and can be found on YouTube.

Power Records – Planet of the Apes (Read Along)

As is the case with Star Trek comics, Apes comics have been translated and published in many other countries. This reprint from Mundi-Comics features some terrific cover art. There were also some original Planet of the Apes comics, written in Spanish and Hungarian.

El Planeta de los Monos #3, 1979, Mundi-Comics

Beginning in 1990, Planet of the Apes experienced a brief three-year renaissance in the hands of Malibu Graphics/Adventure Comics. Malibu kept the franchise alive with a black & white series of comics, often published with cover art featuring fearsome gorillas, nearly naked humans or scantily clad apes. Really.

Planet of the Apes #1, 1990, Malibu Comics

Planet of the Apes Annual #1, 1991, Adventure Comics

In 2001, director Tim Burton’s big budget remake of Planet of the Apes spawned another brief run of books from Dark Horse Comics. More gorillas and nearly naked humans in several mini-series and an ongoing series.

Planet of the Apes: The Human War #3, 2001, Dark Horse Comics

If you need to brush up on the history and minutiae of the Planet of the Apes universe, Rich Handley has written two indispensable references, shown below, both published by Hasslein Books. You can also find a nice compact history of Planet of the Apes compiled by Don Kaye for Rolling Stone.

Timeline of the Planet of the Apes by Rich Handley, 2009, Hasslein Books

Lexicon of the Planet of the Apes by Rich Handley, 2010, Hasslein Books

Apes of Christmas Present
Which brings us to the present and the ongoing reboot of Planet of the Apes which began in 2011. Rise of the Planet of the Apes, directed by Rupert Wyatt, starring James Franco and Andy Serkis, has galvanized the franchise all over again.

Rise of the Planet of the Apes, 1-sheet poster, 2011

With the new film series comes renewed fan interest, often expressed in fan art, photo-shopping, and cosplay. Click on the ape in command to see more.

Star Trek / Planet of the Apes art and photos

Fan art isn’t really found in fanzines any more. Today, websites like Deviant Art are home to an astonishing range of fan and professional art, including sketches and paintings with a Trek Apes theme.

Deviant Trek Apes art

Instead of fanzines, 21st century fans are expressing their affection for media franchises like Star Trek and Planet of the Apes with video, and of course, Starfleet has visited Ape City on YouTube.

Planet of the Apes Meets Star Trek Part 1 of 2

BOOM! Studios jumped on the Apes bandwagon with comics based on the new films in 2011 and continues to publish entertaining stories and movie adaptations. At present, a six-issue adaptation of the 2014 film Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is underway.

Planet of the Apes #1, 2011, BOOM! Studios

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes #1 of 6, 2014, BOOM! Studios

For those of you who like lists, Rich Handley is also deeply immersed in Star Trek and Planet of the Apes comics. He has published two indices at the Hasslein Books website that you can download. Both lists are updated regularly. WARNING: combing through these lists of comics may be hazardous to your monthly budget!

Star Trek and Planet of the Apes Comics Indices by Rich Handley (PDF)

In October, IDW Publishing and BOOM! Studios gave New York Comic Con attendees a tantalizing preview of December’s Trek/Apes crossover mini-series, The Primate Directive, publishing an ashcan comic containing the first five pages of issue #1.

Star Trek/Planet of the Apes: The Primate Directive Ashcan, October 2014
Written by Scott Tipton and David Tipton, art and cover by Rachael Stott, back cover art by George Perez, colored by Charlie Kirchoff, lettered by Tom B. Long, edited by Sarah Gaydos (IDW Publishing) and Dafna Pleban (BOOM! Studios)

Cover art by Rachael Stott, back cover art by George Perez

In brief, my reaction was “Apes with guns! Sulu and Uhura as Klingons! What’s not to like about this?” and I don’t think you’ll be disappointed either. I’m particularly impressed with Rachael Stott’s artwork, but you can judge for yourself. See the article Star Trek/Planet of the Apes Issue #1 Preview Pages posted October 26.

Apes of Christmas Yet to Come
The first issue of The Primate Directive is scheduled for release on 31 December 2014. The story takes place just after the events of the first film, Planet of the Apes, but before the major events of Beneath the Planet of the Apes. The mini-series is written by @Scott_Tipton, whose website is Comics 101, and his brother, @David_Tipton of Blastoff Comics. The artist is a talented newcomer from the UK, Rachael Stott, who tweets @RachaelAtWork. There is a superabundance of cover artists including George Perez, Tone Rodriguez, Juan Ortiz and more. The editors are @SarahGaydos of IDW Pubishing and Dafna Pleban from BOOM! Studios, currently tweeting as @DafnaDOOM. Four of the five issues have been solicited and we can probably expect a collection some time next summer. There will be at least eight covers for the first issue. You can examine six of them at a cover gallery posted by IDW and here are two more variants.

ThinkGeek variant cover art by John H. Midgley and a blank sketch cover.

Star Trek/Planet of the Apes #1 (of 5)
Scott Tipton, David Tipton (w) • Rachael Stott (a) • Stott, Juan Ortiz, George Perez, Tone Rodriguez, John H. Midgley, Charlie Kirchoff (c)
It’s the crossover nobody ever expected! STAR TREK: The hope for the best of mankind’s future! PLANET OF THE APES: A chilling look at the fall of humanity! How could these worlds possibly collide? What could possibly cause Captain Kirk and the crew of the Enterprise to side with Dr. Zaius to protect Ape City? And what does Colonel George Taylor have to say about it? It’s a madhouse! A madhouse!!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Star Trek/Planet of the Apes #2 (of 5)
Scott Tipton, David Tipton (w) • Rachael Stott (a) • Stott, Joe Corroney (c)
The colossal crossover nobody ever expected continues! Captain Kirk and the Enterprise crew have landed on the Planet of the Apes–but how?! And how are the Klingons involved? Plus: Taylor meets up with Kirk and Spock, but will he greet them with open arms? Or flying bullets?
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Star Trek/Planet of the Apes #3 (of 5)
Scott Tipton, David Tipton (w) • Rachael Stott (a) • Stott, Kevin Wada (c)
It’s the battle for the ages! Taylor has escaped the Planet of the Apes, and Captain Kirk must bring him back! Plus, the Klingon/Gorilla alliance makes its move against Dr. Zaius and Ape City!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Star Trek/Planet of the Apes #4 (of 5)
Scott Tipton, David Tipton (w) • Rachael Stott (a) • Stott, J.K. Woodward (c)
An uneasy alliance has been forged between Captain Kirk and Colonel Taylor! But will it be enough to prevent Commander Kor and his Klingons from toppling the regime of Doctor Zaius?
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Star Trek/Planet of the Apes #5 (of 5)
Scott Tipton, David Tipton (w) • Rachael Stott (a & c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

And if you still need more Apes after all this is said and done,, the same folks who brought us New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics are doing it all over again for Planet of the Apes comics, including a chapter on The Primate Directive. Don’t miss out on the fun!

The Sacred Scrolls: Comics on the Planet of the Apes, edited by Rich Handley and Joseph F. Berenato, 2015?

By the way, if you haven’t picked out a Christmas present for yourself or a loved one, there’s still time to order the ebook edition of New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics, edited by Joseph F. Berenato, with a foreward by David Gerrold. It’s the perfect gift! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone!

New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics, edited by Joseph F. Berenato, 2014

You can pre-order Star Trek comics at a discount from Things From Another World, just click on the banner.

Find Star Trek comics, toys, statues, and collectibles at!

Mark Martinez is an obsessive-compulsive Star Trek comics reader and collector. You can visit his website, the Star Trek Comics Checklist for more than you ever needed to know about Star Trek comics.

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Wow, this is like the longest blog post ever.

I want to see a crossover between Star Trek, Planet of the Apes and Inception, where the seeds of the ape revolution are planted deep into the subconscious mind of Harry Mudd.

And of course William Shatner meets Charlton Heston on the set of Planet of the Apes.


@Mark Martinez

Thanks a lot for this article. I love all things related to Planet of the Apes franchise & this sure looks like a gift from the Lawgiver himself :)

Small world the internet, a video I uploaded years ago on YouTube is in this article, cool! :)

Reminds me of the title of a TV Guide article, back when the PoTA live-action series premiered: “How to Milk an Ape”

Great survey, though!

Star Trek Rampage?

ive already re-ordered the title,i am not holding out much hope for it as it seem pointless however i hope i am wrong

what i would like is another star trek/doctor who crossover now that had fun written all over it

i do hope, so how, the character mark Lenard played in pota TV meets Spock father played by same actor and the Klingon from the motion picture,;it would be fun,not overboard

What, such al lengthy article about Planet of the Apes, and no mention of the Simpsons version?

“I hate every ape I see, from Chimpan-a to chimmpan-zee!” :-D

“At present, a six-issue adaptation of the 2014 film Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is underway.”

It’s not an adaptation–it’s a prequel. Entirely original story.

The Primate Directive? Seems like one of those occasions when the title came before the story to me!

Love the Ape films, and naturally, I love TOS. Thanks for the article, its a treasure trove to explore!

#10 wow they love Bob Orci over on that site don’t they! Hard to disagree with some of the comments, particularly about Into Dorkness.

I often cringe on things like this.
Not to get any one upset, but has Star Trek really dropped so low as to need to attach it self to more successful franchises?
Cross overs to Doctor Who (which is by far much more original) and Planet of the Apes.
What next?
Die Hard?
Mad Max?
Jurassic Park?
How long can this list be?

“which is by far much more original”

What does that even mean? What is more original than what?

It’s not that Star Trek has sunk so low that it has to attach itself to other franchises, it is the fact that this copy and paste generation is so creatively bankrupt that not only can they not create their OWN franchises in first place, they can’t even create stories within those established franchises and end up having to combine two of them, which in the end pretty much writes itself.

Perhaps I shouldn’t say “this generation” it is obviously whomever is running things in Hollywood etc.

I think the pendulum will swing the other way eventually and we will have a creative renaissance, but it wont be coming from Hollywood.

Thing is, people always love to speculate on what crossovers could be like. When I was a child, we’d play crossovers in the playground: Jim Kirk, Luke Skywalker and Han Solo battling Darth Vader, Khan and the Cylons. It’s fun. When the crossovers hit real TV shows and films (Dracula vs Frankenstein’s monster vs the Wolf Man starts to stretch credibility) I’m slightly more dubious, but books and comics are a bit of harmless fun!

Yeah, the masses are clamoring for this like they were for Pepsi Clear back in the early 90s. Just like then, executives use gimmicks instead of improving their core product and no number of Van Halen song tie-ins are going to help this idea get off the ground.

@17 Dom

Point taken Dom!


Star Trek as is isn’t clear of its future – story lines – etc.

Why pollute the waters beyond all hope by even thinking

of add POTA to a very cloudy picture? Their might be

microscopic amount of writers – directors and producers

to might be able to do it right but looking at Star Treks

past entries in the movies just dream on. It won’t even begin to happen

Crossovers used to be the province of fanfic (in printed fanzines, as the article notes, and later on the internet), and I am likewise dubious about its adoption as an official technique. It’s a writing shortcut: why spend effort establishing characters and milieu when you can drop symbols onto a page and let readers flood-fill with known traits? (That’s the seductive advantage of any media tie-in, but a crossover doubles it. Or halves, maybe.) Personally, I prefer the “take a premise from classic literature, file off the serial numbers, then tell a story relevant to Trek” approach.

This *could* be terrible, depending on what crossover mechanism is used and, more fundamentally, what story is told. I will reserve judgement until I see it.

As a mechanism, “two universes fuse due to spatial anomaly/transporter accident/godlike being” is cliché, but ST:TOS has a built-in explanation: having already encountered so many Earth-parallel worlds, it’s not inconceivable that Enterprise finds yet another, one that underwent a human-simian social evolution as seen in PotA. Not literally as in the movies or TV shows, but close enough that readers can hum along. Under no circumstances should the TOS characters consult the library computer and notice a parallel to Earth fiction circa 1963-1980.

In the final analysis, presumably IDW does crossovers (Trek/Who, Trek/Legion of Super-Heroes, everybody vs. zombies) because they sell. (Personally, I still want Trek vs. Transformers, where Starfleet completely fails to notice the extra shuttlecraft in garish colors with Decepticon markings.)

I would like to add my compliments to Mr. Martinez, for writing an informative survey article.

#20: Um…… what?

i love the the st/pota x over! i want an x – over with star wars and also one with aliens , but more shorter kie a one shot or 2 part thing. yah!