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Koba
Poster 02

Full Name

Koba

Nicknames

"One-Eye"

Goals

To control over the ape colony and enslave the human community

Fate

Presumed to have died after being dropped off a building wreckage by Caesar

Apes follow Koba now!
~ Koba's most famous quote
Apes win war! Apes together strong!
~ Koba

Koba is an anti-hero of Rise of the Planet of the Apes and the hidden main antagonist of its sequel, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. He is an old, scarred bonobo and the treacherous second-in-command of Ape King Caesar. But, despite being presumed deceased, he has possibly survived to his fall and return in War for the Planet of the Apes, but this time as the secondary antagonist (behind The Colonel).

Appearances

Rise of the Planet of the Apes

Background

(In sign language) "For years I was a prisoner in the labs. They cut me... Tortured me. You freed me, I would do anything you ask, but now we must show strength!"
~ Koba about his history being experimented on

Koba was one of several test subjects for Gen-Sys, and was experimented on for years, causing him to develop a hatred for humans. Focusing his anger on Steven Jacobs, the CEO of Gen-Sys, Koba feigned docility as a ploy to get close enough to Steven and kill him. During a test run, Koba was administered the ALZ-113 drug, increasing his intelligence. However, in the process, Koba exposed Chimp handler Robert Franklin to the drug, which proved to be fatal to humans.

Shortly afterwards, Caesar, a chimpanzee with increased intelligence due to having been exposed to ALZ-112 since he was born, led a revolt and led a group of freed apes to the Gen-Sys laboratories, freeing the apes held captive there. Koba, upon being freed, accompanied the apes to the Golden Gates Bridge, where he took part in fighting off the police blockade sent to stop the apes. In the process, Steven Jacobs flew to the bridge via helicopter and ordered his men to gun down Caesar, but a gorilla, Buck, took down the helicopter at the cost of his own life. Koba, upon seeing an injured by still living Steven in the demolished helicopter, tipped the helicopter into the ocean, killing Jacobs.

Afterwards, Koba followed the rest of the apes into the Muir Woods Parks, followed by Caesar's adoptive human father, William Rodman. Upon noticing William, Koba sprang from the trees and tackled him to the ground. However, before he could kill him, Caesar came to William's rescue and knocked Koba away. Furious, Koba briefly confronted Caesar, but soon fled. However, he returned afterwards to acknowledge Caesar's leadership.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Ten years after Koba joined the apes in the Muir Woods, he is now acting as an adviser to Caesar and mentor to Caesar's son, Blue Eyes. Koba was shown to be a staunch ally of Caesar, rescuing him and Blue Eyes from a bear attack, and also comforts Blue Eyes by telling him the scars he received from the attack makes him strong. Soon afterwards, Blue Eyes and his friend, Ash, the son of Caesar's lieutenant Rocket, encountered a human named Carver in the forest. In a panic, Carver shot Ash in the shoulder just before his group, led by a man named Malcolm, arrived. Koba joined Caesar as his ape army cornered Malcolm's group. However, instead of killing them, Caesar ordered Malcolm's group to leave, but secretly ordered Koba to follow them.

Koba discovered a human community, largely depleted from the Simian Flu released by Koba a decade before, led by former police chief Dreyfus. Upon returning to the Ape Village, Koba joined in a council meeting, where he suggested that the apes attack the humans in retaliating for shooting Ash. However, Caesar refused, citing that war could result in disastrous consequences for both sides. Koba, quelled by this, then told Caesar that the apes must show strength. In response to this, Caesar led his ape army to the city the next day and commanded that the humans remain in the city to avoid further confrontation. Just before leaving, Koba gave a hateful glance towards the humans.

Despite Caesar's command, Malcolm soon arrived at the Ape Village and was captured by gorillas led by Luca. Koba immediately opted to try and kill him, but Caesar gave the command to let Malcolm live. Malcolm explained to the apes that the humans needed to reactivate a hydroelectric dam in order to send power into the city. Caesar agreed to this, but on the condition that the humans give up their guns. Koba was angered that Caesar would allow the humans to work with them, reminding Caesar that the humans would become more dangerous with power restored to the city. Caesar, angered at Koba's defiance, silently challenged him to continue his opposition. Koba, realizing he was no match for Caesar, submitted and left out of humiliation.

The next day, Koba, along with his two close followers Grey and Stone, snuck into the human city and discovered an abandoned armory. Seeing the hundreds of guns in the armory, Koba assumed that Dreyfus was planning for war. However, upon being caught by two guards, Koba managed to escape by acting like a dumb ape. Afterwards, Koba returned to the Ape Village and discovered that Carver had threatened Blue Eyes and his brother Milo with a hidden shotgun. Arriving at the dam, Koba briefly lashed out at Malcolm's teenage son Alexander, but was stopped by Caesar's friend, the orangutan Maurice. Caesar soon arrived and Koba accused him of putting the apes in danger by allowing the humans to stay and announcing that Caesar loved humans more than apes.

This prove to be the final straw for Caesar, who tackled Koba and the two apes brawled. Koba initially held the upper hand, but was soon overpowered by Caesar, who beat and strangled him. However, remembering the ape law that apes do not kill apes, Caesar ceased his assault on Koba, who was severely injured from the fight. Humiliated, Koba got to his feet and asked forgiveness from Caesar, who accepted. However, Koba reneged to inform Caesar of the guns, and began plotting against him. Returning to the armory, Koba deceived the two guards into letting Koba get close enough to steal one of their rifles and gun down both of them. That night, Koba returned to the forest and secretly murdered Carver, stealing his lighter and cap. Then, out of sight from anyone, Koba had Grey and Stone set fire to the Ape Village.

The apes and humans, who hadn't noticed the fire, celebrated as the dam was repaired and power was restored to the city. However, Koba, hiding within the trees, aimed the rifle at Caesar. The Ape King noticed Koba, but was too late to dodge as Koba shot him in the shoulder and caused him to fall down into the forest. Panicking at the fire and the loss of their alpha, the apes were tricked by Koba into believing that the humans were responsible for supposedly killing Caesar. Taking charge, Koba assembled the ape army and led them to the city, storming the armory and stealing the guns, knowing that the apes would be no match for the humans without weapons.

With Koba taking the lead, the apes attacked the human city. Initially, Koba's army was beaten back by the human's automatic weaponry, and Grey was killed by a rocket launcher. However, Koba managed to rally his army, first by duel-wielding machine guns, then by hijacking a tank and using it to crash down the tower gate, allowing the apes to enter the building. By daybreak, the apes had gained control over the human city, capturing many of the humans. While ordering the apes to pursue the fleeing humans, Koba ambushed a man struggling to defend himself from the apes. Taking a metal pole, Koba handed it to Ash and ordered him to kill the human. Ash refused, stating that Caesar wouldn't want it, and dropped the pole. Enraged, Koba dragged Ash up the stairs and threw him off the balcony to his death in front of Blue Eyes.

In response to Ash's defiance, Koba ordered for all apes known to be loyal to Caesar to be caged in a bus, along with the captured humans. Koba then announced to the humans that they would know life in cage before commanding the apes to seek out any remaining humans. Unknown to Koba, Caesar had survived Koba's attack and was healed by Malcolm's wife Ellie. Blue Eyes, upon reuniting with his father, helped him free the captured humans and apes before informing him that Koba had given the command to send for the women and children. Caesar, upon being informed by Blue Eyes that Koba was on a tower surrounded by loyal apes, decided to confront Koba himself to regain control.

Koba, who was at the top of the human tower, soon noticed that Caesar was alive and immediately confronted him. Koba told Caesar that the apes no longer followed him and denounced Caesar as weak. However, Caesar replied that Koba was weaker for relying on guns. Enraged, Koba attacked Caesar, expecting an easy victory due to Caesar's previous injury. The two apes battled on the human tower, and Koba initially held the upper hand due to Caesar's gunshot wound, but received a gash on his side after falling on several metal bars. Caesar took the opportunity to repeatedly target Koba's gash, further injuring him. The battle was interrupted, however, when Dreyfus activated the C-4 explosives, collapsing the tower, causing Koba and Caesar to plummet.

Koba survived the destruction of the tower and, in a last attempt to kill Caesar and keep control over the apes, stole a machine gun and fired at Caesar while he was distracted freeing trapped apes. Blue Eyes managed to distract Koba from Caesar by throwing a metal rod at him. Disoriented, Koba fired at the other apes and shot Maurice. Caesar took his chance and lunged at Koba, knocking him of the platform and leaving Koba hanging off a ledge. Koba, seeing Caesar standing over him, pleaded with Caesar not to kill him by citing the law that apes don't kill apes. Caesar, taking this into consideration, initially helped Koba from the ledge. However, Caesar then saw all the destruction caused by Koba, and proclaimed that Koba was not an ape. Caesar then dropped Koba into the tunnel, causing him to fall onto a metal crane and die.

Trivia

  • Koba is 26, making him the oldest known ape in the series.
  • Koba is the only bonobo to appear in the films. Interestingly, bonobos are known for their peaceful nature, while Koba is the most violent ape in the Ape Village.
  • The average bonobo is smaller than a common chimpanzee. However, Koba is larger than most of the chimpanzees in the village.
  • Koba is clearly based on General Aldo from the original Planet of the Apes series. Both want to exterminate the humans, want to seize power from their leader, and both break the "Ape not kill ape" law. Also, both are killed by falling to their deaths.
  • In the film's novelization, Koba is mistakenly referred to as a chimpanzee.

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