JLApe: Gorilla Warfare (1999) Reading Order

The Justice League go ape when a mysterious foe from Gorilla City blasts them with a morphogenic that turns most of the team into gorillas. Will the JLApe give in to their animalistic side and join their shadowy nemesis or can their fight their base instincts and save humanity from the same fate?

Crossover: This eight-part crossover events ran through all of DC’s JLA-related 1999 annuals with a prologue story to get it started.

When an issue contains multiple stories, the relevant story is denoted with square brackets. For example [2/5] refers to the second story of the five stories in that issue, so you don’t need to read the other four. 

Want to keep it simple? Here’s the chronological reading order without story descriptions, or spoilers:

  • Legends of the DC Universe #19
  • JLA Annual #3
  • Batman Annual #23
  • Aquaman Annual #5
  • Wonder Woman Annual #8
  • The Flash Annual #12
  • Superman Annual #11
  • Green Lantern Annual #8
  • Martian Manhunter Annual #2

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Title & Issue NumberSynopsis & First Appearances
Legends of the DC Universe #19While Max Mercury investigates apes tapping into the Speed Force, his protegé Impulse searches for his kidnapped friend. The cause of both is Gorbul Mammit, son of Gorilla Grodd. Impulse rescues Carol Bucklen and disrupts Mammit’s plans to create super-apes. But his actions inspire his father…
JLA Annual #3 After making the existence of Gorilla City public and being accepted in the United Nations, the nation’s ruler Solovar is assassinated. Agents of Gorilla Grodd – collectively calling themselves Simian Scarlet – step in to stir anti-human sentiment. The FlashAquamanSupermanMartian Manhunter & Wonder Woman are transformed into apes on their way to Gorilla City. Gorilla City representatives declare war at the United Nations and turn those present – including Green Lantern – into apes. Batman and Martian Manhunter build a device that restores the UN to human form, but the JLA – except Batman – are still apes. Martian Manhunter discovers a greater plan afoot… 
Batman Annual #23Batman & Nightwing investigate a mob hit at one of Blockbuster’s casinos in Blüdhaven, discovering their suspect is the gun-toting ape Grimm from Gorilla City. The heroes head off an illegal shipment at the docks, clashing with Blockbuster & his assassin Lady Vic and Grimm. The three-way fight sinks the ship along with Grodd’s cargo. 
Aquaman Annual #5Admiral Trafalgo of Gorilla City leads a crew of fellow apes to Atlantis to obtain the Eye of Poseidon. Despite now being an ape, Aquaman returns to Atlantis to defend it as Atlanteans and sea life are transformed into apes by the attackers’ blasts. MeraDolphin & Tempest defend the city while Aquaman uses the Eye to transform his people and himself back to their true forms, only for it to turn some of the attacking apes into Atlanteans. 
Title & Issue NumberSynopsis & First Appearances
Wonder Woman Annual #8Artemis provokes Wonder Woman’s transformation back to human form. The mystic gorilla Abu-Gita attempts to travel to the underworld via Themyscira. Wonder Woman, Artemis, Shim’tar & Nu’bia follow their trail. Wonder Woman uses the Lasso of Truth to reveal to Abu-Gita that the mythology of Gorilla City is a lie. Not only is it not ancient, it’s probably only existed for decades. Devastated, Abu-Gita departs.
The Flash Annual #12Jesse Quick, Max Mercury, Impulse and the original Flash (Jay Garrick) pursue the current Flash – Wally West’s apparent replacement – who’s still in ape form. But Grodd transforms all the speedsters into apes and works to use their collective Speed Force energy to transform all Central City residents into apes. Somehow imbued with more intelligence, ‘Chimpulse’ encourages his fellow speedsters to rebel against Grodd and finds that vibrating through walls returns them to human form. The Flash destroys Gorilla Grodd’s signal tower, but the ape escapes…
Superman Annual #11While new Gorilla City ruler Prince Ulgo believes he’s controlling the transformation of American citizens into apes, Lois Lane is looking to prove Solovar wasn’t assassinated by humans. Superman flies to the Sun which undoes his transformation into an ape. He returns to Earth to fight a giant robot battle ape – the Grogamesh Juggernaut – which has ‘swallowed’ Lois. Superman convinces the Grogamesh’s pilot, Ulgo, that he’s been duped, then trashes the rogue robot. Now Ulgo demands to know the truth…
Green Lantern Annual #8 Having failed their missions, the members of Simian Scarlet cede control of the mission to transform humanity to apes to General Zolog, head of Gorilla City’s space programme. With the blast radius of the morphogenic ray greatly reduced, Zolog’s team target Honolulu. Martian Manhunter, Guy GardnerSentinel and the Metal Men lock on Zolog’s position, but have to contend with the Green Lantern defector Kyle Rayner in ape form. Manhunter triggers memories that prompt Kyle’s ring into restoring him to human form. With the other heroes, Green Lantern defeats the ape Space Marines and destroys their satellite, but not before it hits more targets on Earth…
Martian Manhunter Annual #2 The shapeshifting Martian Manhunter’s default form had become that of an ape, but a reset has restored his true form. While the JLA deal with the various crises caused by the transformed humans, the Martian Manhunter follows the clues to find who’s behind Scarlet Simian. Announcing the mastermind is Gorilla Grodd, the Manhunter tricks their foe into giving up his power by implying his increased might from the psychic energy he’s absorbing will lead to his ascension to an energy form that will cost him his body. Green Lantern and Steel restore humanity. Ulgo retakes the throne of Gorilla City, while Grodd’s mental capability is reduced to that of a regular ape.
Issue / IMPACTCrossover / Event
Titans #8 (1999)
Gorilla Grodd returns as a member of Tartarus, with his intellect restored after
making a deal with Vandal Savage.
The Flash #154 (1999)
The ‘Dark Flash’ is revealed to be Walter West – a future incarnation of Wally West.
Aquaman #63 (2000)
Dolphin’s baby, Cerdian, is born.
The Flash #159 (2000)
‘Dark Flash’ returns to his own family, despite starting a relationship with 
Angelina Margolin; Angelina implies she’s pregnant with Walter West’s child.
Birds of Prey #22-24 (2000)
Gorilla Grodd is revealed to have become ruler of Gorilla City again; Blockbuster
travels to Gorilla City with Grimm to obtain the heart of another gorilla to replace his own.
Nightwing #50 (2000)
Having obtained the heart of another ape, Blockbuster goes through a successful transplant
Justice League of America #31 (2009)
Gorbul Mammit returns, attacking the Flash’s home.
Blackest Night: The Flash #1-3 (2010)
Solovar is among those who rise from the dead and oppose the Flash as members of the 
Black Lantern Corps

Reading Order ©OmniverseComicsGuide 2023

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