With Godzilla vs. Kong in full swing, let’s take a look at the 2017 comic Skull Island: The Birth of Kong to see what the ape was up to before the showdown.

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Skull Island: The Birth of Kong and Godzilla vs. Kong.

Legendary images’ Kong: Skull Island featured a modern, more aggressive take on the giant ape as MonsterVerse began its first steps toward a showdown with Godzilla. However, while Godzilla: King of the Monsters helps set up this long-awaited showdown, there wasn’t much context for Kong’s journey. Cinematically at least, because the 2017 comic book miniseries Skull Island: The Birth of Kong fill in some of the gaps.

Skull island focused on the Monarch team led in 1973 by Houston Brooks (played by Corey Hawkins) to map out the newly discovered land mass. They met the indigenous Iwi, but clashed with the monstrous Skullcrawlers, leading to a war that brought Kong to light. The encounter ended with the Titan killing his enemies and the surviving members of the escaping expedition, keeping Skull Island and its main predator a secret, while the Monarch intensified his study of the Titans.

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Written by Arvid Nelson and illustrated by Robert Napton, the comic features a significantly older Houston on the brink of retirement in 2012, only to be intelligently presented about his missing son, Aaron. He had uncovered facts about the Skull Island cover-up, and in flashbacks from 1995, we see him leading a military squad there to take out Kong.

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A member of the team, Walter Riccio, tunes in to the island and, though he goes insane, receives visions that reveal that the Skullcrawlers killed the last of Kong’s species, with the Titan’s mother giving birth to him in battle. His parents hid Kong, only to die, which is why he feels such animosity towards the Skullcrawlers. Kong eventually destroyed the monsters that attacked the Iwi and spared Aaron, but killed Ricco.

Aaron stayed with the Iwi, sending his diary and key digital data on a raft to his father. That’s what Houston unlocks to tell this story. Sadly, the comic shows nothing but a bigger Kong and more monsters, like the Death Jackals and Psycho Vultures. We can assume that Kong trained by killing and feeding on them as he grew in stature. But Kong’s birth it’s really a story about his past and why this is the case, focusing more on his mental state than his physical state.

However, there are some problems with that in terms of continuity. Houston retires when this four-issue adventure ends and is supposedly watching a cruise ship. However, it is actually an expedition to find Aaron. Your son is not mentioned in King of monsters, where the cameos of Houston (this time played by Joe Morton) as part of the team that monitors Mothra in 2019. Godzilla vs. Kong, which is strange, considering he has a lot of experience with apes.

The Brooks aren’t even recognized by Ilene (Rebecca Hall), who ran the Monarch outpost on Skull Island from 2019 to 2024, when the Titans collide. We learn that all the Iwi have been eliminated, and Jia is the last of her kind. His parents were killed in a storm when the island became unstable and the Titans flocked, so we can only assume that Aaron died with them and Houston moved on.

KEEP READING: Godzilla vs. Kong, Kong’s GREATEST Unanswered Mysteries

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