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Characters: Ape Escape
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    Protagonists 

Spike/Kakeru

The hero of the original Ape Escape and a few of the spin-offs.

Jake/Buzz/Hiroki

The rival and friend of Spike who has a bad habit of being brainwashed by Specter.

Natalie/Natsumi

The daughter of the Professor, Natalie is a Tomboy who follows in her father's footsteps.

In the anime, she actually goes out and assists Spike in capturing monkeys, moreso then any other character. Otherwise, she acts like she did in the games.

  • Fiery Redhead
  • Girlish Pigtails
  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Misty from Pokemon in Ape Escape 2. Hilarious, considering that Jimmy, the protagonist of Ape Escape 2, was voiced by Ash Ketchum.
  • Only Sane Man: She's the only character Subverted midway into the anime's second season, where she is somewhat distraught over the abduction of her father. Averted in the Fredorator cartoon, where she's just as zany as the rest of the cast.
  • Lethal Chef: Possibly, She likes cooking and she is the only person to like how they taste. The only reason her Sweet Azuki bean porridge turned out well is because a Monkey changed the spice shaker caps. But upon trying it she notes it doesn't taste like how she usually makes it.
  • Red Headed Heroine
  • Simple Staff: This is her melee weapon of choice in Pumped & Primed.
  • Tsundere: Towards Jake in the anime.

The Professor/Hakase

He appears in the anime with more or less the same role. He is a bit more zany.

  • Dan Green: His voice actor in 2. He also returns to the role in Spike's arcade mode cutscenes in Playstation All Stars Battle Royale.
  • Drop the Hammer: His melee weapon of choice in Pumped & Primed is a mechanical hammer.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: He created the Pipo Helmet (Peak Point Helmet in the US release) to increase the intelligence of monkeys, although his prototype helmet was unstable and needed to be finished. He left the prototype at the circus where it was ultimately found by Specter, thus beginning the series.
    • It doesn't help that his colleagues also did similar experiments and most of them actually ended up worse for wear. One ( Tomoki) has a helmet permanently grafted to his head, and another (Helga's father) created the Pipotrons, who eventually kidnapped him years later.
  • No Mouth: It's obscured by his mustache.
  • No Name Given: Subverted, as his name in the first game is written on the doors of the training rooms, Dr. Ozel. It's hard to read, though, and he has not once been called that.
  • Only Sane Man: He tends to take things rather seriously, but not as much as his daughter. Subverted in the cartoon and anime, where he's goofier.

Jimmy/Hikaru

Jimmy is a friend and cousin of Spike.

  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Ash Ketchum to be exact, and there's no difference between their voices.
  • Kid Hero
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: It's his fault the monkeys are going ape in the second game in the first place.
  • Put on a Bus: Outside of a minor role in Saru Saru Big Mission, Jimmy hasn't appeared in any subsequent games in the series. He didn't even appear in the anime. However, he was the main character of two short-lived Ape Escape cartoons that aired on Nicktoons (a CGI one made around 2004 by the makers of the games themselves, and a flash cartoon helmed by Doug TenNapel in 2010.)
  • Red-Headed Hero

Kei & Yumi/Satoru & Sayaka

They made reoccurring appearances in the anime, with Yumi being a major character in three episodes (two involving the Pipotrons kidnapping her, and the third involving a drawing contest between her and Pink Monkey.)

  • Brother-Sister Team
  • Expy: Yumi briefly becomes one of Chun-Li in an episode of the anime.
  • Flat Character: Kei is no different then his predecessors, and due to the popularity of his sister (in-universe, that is), he has even less development.
  • Henshin Hero: Their watches allow them to transform and gain powers.
  • Idol Singer: Yumi is one in both the games and anime. This attracts the wrong attention in both, a rivalry with Pink Monkey in the games and being kidnapped twice by the Pipotron Brothers (as part of an attempt to become famous by performing with her) in the anime.
    • Because of this, picking her makes Ape Escape 3 slightly easier, as a handful of the monkeys are part of her fan club, and instead of running away or attacking her, simply fall to the ground and stare at her with hearts in their eyes.
  • Red Headed Heroine: Yumi.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Kei.

Aki

Kei and Yumi's aunt. She acts as a replacement for Natalie, giving you instructions as well as new gadgets.

Casey/Casi/Charu

An AI created by the Professor.

  • Ascended Extra: Casi plays a bigger role overall in the anime. She is given an android body in order to save Spike and his friends from shapeshifting monkeys. She later plays a key role in breaking Specter's control over Kohta towards the end of the first season, and is ultimately the one who stops Specter in the season two mid-finale.
  • Demoted to Extra: Casi never really did much to begin with, but outside of Pumped and Primed and Million Monkeys, she never appeared outside of the first game. Interestingly, concept art and even an in-game photo of her and Natalie appear in the second game, despite Casi herself not being in it.
  • Dub Name Change: She is called Casey in the original game, then is given her Japanese name in Ape Escape 2 artwork, then called Casi in Pumped and Primed. Most English fans usually refer to her P&P name.
  • Evil Knockoff: Million Monkeys had Virus Casis, which were EvilTwin Evil Twins that were murderous, used machine guns, and could multiply and overwrite Casi herself.
  • Leitmotif: Oddly enough, a rather Indian sounding tune with drums and chanting.
  • Minor Major Character: In the first game, Casi mostly appeared on-screen showing you how many monkeys the player had to catch. The only time she plays an important role in the game is when Spike returns to the present time finding it overrun with monkeys causing havoc. She informs Spike of what happened to the Professor and Natalie and gives him the penultimate gadget, the RC Car.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Casi is this in the anime, almost always wearing a maid outfit from the second season onwards. There's even a scene in one episode where it appears that she's stripping.
  • Ninja Maid: Sometimes becomes this in the anime, namely when taking on Red and Pink.
  • Robot Girl: Becomes this in Million Monkeys and shortly after her debut in the anime.
  • Super Powered Robot Meter Maid: Quite possibly the strongest character in the anime, even stronger then Ukki Red! She spends the majority of the anime on the sidelines though.
  • You Don't Look Like You: She gets a ponytail in Pumped and Primed onwards, and later has giant "ear bolts" sticking out of her head in Million Monkeys and the anime.
  • You Gotta Have Green Hair

Playstation Move Hero (No Name Given, seriously)

There's really not much to say about this guy.

  • Flat Character: Possibly one of the flattest in video game history.
  • Heroic Mime: He doesn't say a single thing during gameplay.
  • The Faceless: Other then a brief glance at his mouth, you never the front of his face.
  • The Voiceless: Taken Up to Eleven in the cutscenes. There are moments where he says something, but it is always in text, despite everyone else actually having V As.

Tohko & Tsukushi

Tohko and Tsukushi are sisters who aid the protagonist in the Playstation Move game.

  • Expy: They appear to be that of Natalie. Tohko in terms of personality, Tsukushi is terms of appearance.
  • Moe: Tsukushi appears to be one.
  • Red Headed Heroine: Tsukushi.
  • Tsundere: Tohko comes off as this.

Grandma Haru

The grandmother of Tohko and Tsukushi in the Playstation Move reboot. She went missing after trying to build a machine to find her pet monkey Specter.

    Antagonists 

Specter

Specter was a famous circus monkey loved and adored by thousands. One day he found the prototype Peak Point Helmet and put it on, increasing his intelligence but also twisting his mind. He quickly escapes the amusement park, after giving all of the other monkeys in the zoo peak point helmets of their own, and leads them to try and take over the world.

He is the only character returning for the new storyline of the Playstation Move reboot. Here he is a Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds who was forcibly separated from his owner Haru and shot up into space, in a constant stare of discomfort and fear due to his dislike of cold.

Specter's portrayal in the anime is a little different. In this version of the story, he is actually a sentient Pipo Helmet that controls whatever unfortunate monkey wears it. Otherwise, he's basically the same as he is in the games.

  • Anti-Villain: His backstory in the PlayStation Move reboot makes him much a more sympathetic character.
  • Ax-Crazy: Increasingly so in the anime. By the end he was willing to blow up the entire Earth after being fed up with just about everyone.
  • Badass Adorable: Subverted, as he is not usually both badass and adorable at the same time. With the helmet, he's a threatening figure, oftentimes with a deep voice in the english dubs. Without the helmet, however, he's just a cute little white monkey who likes to hang on to people.
    • Badass Cape: His default appearance has him wearing a red one.
    • Badass in a Nice Suit: Doubles with He Cleans Up Nicely, as he looks pretty swag in his tuxedo. He also fights you in it in 3. After that, he switches between this and his cape whenever the mood strikes him.
  • Big Bad: For most of the series, excluding Pumped and Primed, where the story is hijacked by a Giant Computer Core From Nowhere, and Million Monkeys, where he is playable and fights against that game's Big Bad. Subverted in the Playstation Move game.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: In the first season of the anime, Kohta was the host for Specter.
  • Butt Monkey: In the Fredorator cartoon, usually due to the stupidity of the monkeys themselves.
  • Evil Albino
  • Evil Plan: Specter pulls a huge one in the second season of the anime. As nothing more then a mere helmet, he had a mutated monkey called Pipo Angel trick the Pipotrons by promising them a wish should they grab five feathers from it. After they do so, Specter gave them a car and had them enter a race, which regardless of who would win (ultimately it was a normal monkey), helped him assimilate the body of Pipo Angel into that of his own. Afterwards, he made the Pipotron Brothers his Terrible Trios with hundreds of monkeys at their disposal and had them do odd tasks. Regardless of whether or not Spike and his friends stopped them, the monkeys' activities powered up a machine that was capable of turning every human on Earth into monkeys. He left Earth to make sure that the Pipotron Brothers (who pulled a Heel-Face Turn) couldn't lead Spike to him, and when the Professor made a device to repel the monkey conversion, Specter was able to hack it anyway, making it futile. When Spike finally got up to Specter's base, he proved to be too powerful for Spike to attack, and was only defeated because Casi hijacked his space station and tossed him out into deep space.
    • And after that, he STILL had a backup plan, which resulted in creating the Freaky Monkey Five, partially disabling Casi and destroying the teleporter Spike and his friends had been using, freeing all of the monkeys they captured, disabled the Monkey Net, making it useless in capturing them again, and kidnapping the Professor and Kohta. His winning streak more or less stopped there, especially after the Professor was rescued.
  • Final Boss: Sans Pumped and Primped, Million Monkeys and the Playstation Move game, Specter usually plays this role.
  • Grand Theft Me: Did this to Kohta at first (as a form of Brainwashed and Crazy), then Pipo Angel (by permanently assimilating it) in the anime.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Averted quite nicely in the games. When Specter has a plan, he always puts a lot of effort and work into it, and they all nearly succeed. Hell, in Ape Escape 2 he's caught a split second before pressing the firing button for the Lethargy Laser!
    • Played straight in Pumped and Primed however, partly due to the plot being negligible, partly due to a more pressing threat at the time.
    • When it isn't a season finale, Specter in the anime is very much this trope. When it isn't a season finale. When it is a season finale, it's a blunt reminder to the cast why he's the Big Bad.
  • I Surrender, Suckers: When Kei and Yumi go to fight him a second time, they fall for this trope and get trapped in electrified cages.
  • Kick the Dog: When Specter finds out that Dr Tomuki has a Pipo Helmet permanently grafted to his head, his response is to have a laughing fit. Satoru and Sayaka are both appalled by this.
  • Large Ham: Specter's UK actor in the first game hammed it up big time.
  • Made of Iron: The punishment he can take in each successive game gets more and more absurd.
  • Only Sane Man: Ironically, Specter is this in the Fredorator cartoon. He's the only character in it who isn't a Cloud Cuckoo Lander.
  • Plot Hole: It's almost never explained how Specter keeps coming back after he is caught by the heroes. Only Ape Escape 2 and the anime give explanations to his return.
  • Psychic Powers
  • Space Is Cold: In the Playstation Move reboot, Specter is shown to greatly dislike the cold. It doesn't help that he's up in space for most of the game, and it's hinted that this was a partial reason for his Face-Heel Turn decades earlier.
  • The Other Darrin: Specter's voice actor changes with every game. The only time the same actor has played his part twice was for 2 and Pumped and Primed.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In each successive game of the main series.
    • In the first Ape Escape, Specter's Psychic Powers are limited to basic shields and energy blasts, though said energy blasts have enough AOE to cover the whole arena, and he has a lot more health than previous bosses by far. He can also teleport, but this is actually a built-in function of his hoverchair rather an ability of his own.
    • Ape Escape 2 turns Specter into a beast. In addition to the above he now has a Fantastic Nuke, a salvo of energy rings, telekinesis, mental projections of himself and energy-powered ramming. He doesn't always have his shield up now, but it's indestructible to make up for that. This is all on top of being faster and more durable.
    • Ape Escape 3 cranks it up even further. The mental projections can now attack on their own, he can concentrate his psychic power into a laser that lasts for a freaking while, and his telekinesis has evolved to the point where he can lift a massive robot head with his mind and drop it on you. He spams the Fantastic Nuke with wild abandonnote  and is even more durable then in the last game. His hoverchair has also been upgraded with a seemingly endless supply of missiles to bombard you with.
  • Villain Protagonist: In Million Monkeys. After Specter discovers that most of his monkey army is under the command of an imposter of him (actually a shift-shaping monkey mutant who is actually working for a human dictator), he and what little remains of his monkeys decide to take action against them. He doesn't team up with Spike and his friends however, and even fights them at one point.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: In Ape Escape 3, Specter's "Double Paradise Plan". He planned to use a giant machine to chop the Earth in half, with Specter and his monkeys ruling one half and the humans owning the other. However, either Specter forgot that the Earth would be destroyed if he did it or he was Ax-Crazy at the moment. Regardless, even Kei and Yumi think this plan is crazy.
  • Worthy Opponent: In both the games and the anime, he sees Spike as this.
  • You Dont Look Like Yourself: Specter wears a tuxedo in Ape Escape 3 and Saru Saru Big Mission, and he gets a red cape and leather pants in Million Monkeys and the anime. The Fredorator cartoon gave him Messy Hair.
  • You Will Be Assimilated: Specter does this quite often in the anime. The first time, the helmet transforms the baby monkey Kohta's body into Specter's form. During the first season finale Kohta's emotions overwhelm the helmet and frees him from it's control. During the second season, he does it again to Pipo Angel, only this time he uses a machine to slowly morph it into a host body that the helmet itself has permanent control over. Lastly, Specter's Evil Plan in the first half of the second season involved turning every human on Earth into monkeys. He almost succeeds.

Pipo Apes/Monkeys/Pipo Saru

The mascots of the series itself, the Pipo Apes are Specter's minions that cause havoc.

The cartoons and anime discarded the multicolored pants in favor of more uniquely dressed monkeys.

  • Beware the Silly Ones: In the Playstation Move game. They act goofy, but are capable of pulling an invasion of Earth off, even going so far as to kidnap Specter, who had a Heel-Face Turn, at the end.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The shorts that the monkeys wear lets you know what kind of monkey you're dealing with.
    • Yellow: Average, run of the mill monkey. Nothing special about these guys.
    • Red: These monkeys are short-tempered powerhouses. They'll punch and scratch you a lot more than other monkeys.
    • Dark Blue: These monkeys run really fast, sometimes to the point of needing a gadget to keep up with them.
    • Light Blue: Cowardly monkeys that just really don't want to be caught. They're more gentle than others, and won't attack the player as often.
    • Green: These monkeys wear special goggles that allow them to see you coming more easily. Often carry rocket-firing backpacks.
    • White: They have poor eyesight and won't see you coming as well as other monkeys. However, they also carry bombs that they'll throw at the player.
  • Harmless Villain: The monkeys actions seem to mostly harmless for the most part, consisting of dancing, goofing about, etc. If it weren't for Specter commanding them, these monkeys might not be a threat at all.
    • They become Not So Harmless Villains in Million Monkeys. Due to being ordered around by a human dictator and his four mutated monkeys, the monkeys dress up in military garb and act rather seriously and use hi-tech gear, realistic mechs. Only the six or so monkeys remaining under Specter's command still act this way, although since they are playable, it can become a case of Beware the Silly Ones.
  • The Cameo: The monkeys are so popular in Japan that they frequently appear in other games. Sadly, most of their cameos are removed from the U.S. versions:
  • The Hat Makes The Ape:
    • This appears to be averted in the PlayStation Move reboot, where the helmets seem to be purely cosmetic. Specter himself isn't even under the influence of one.
  • Mascot Mook
  • The Unintelligible: They make typical monkey screeching noises throughout the majority of the games. In Pumped and Primed's Pipo Ape/Team Monkey cutscenes, Ape Escape 3 (in Mesal Gear Solid and Monkey Theater only), and all three animated adaptations, they "Ukki".

Freaky Monkey Five/Ukki Five

The Freaky Monkey five are Specter's Quirky Miniboss Squad from the second games onward. They are monkeys mutated by Vita-Z Bananas and are usually fought in between levels.

  • Dub Name Change: A odd case in that all the members had their names changed three times in the US. In Ape Escape 2, they were referred to as their color first, then "Monkey" last, in Ape Escape 3, this was swapped around, and in Ape Escape Academy they were referred to by their Japanese names (example: Blue Monkey in 2, Monkey Blue in 3, and Ukki Blue in Academy).
  • Five-Man Band:

Monkey Blue/Blue Monkey/Ukki Blue

The tall, aloof, and cool member of the group. He often uses a unicycle to get around, and can go at incredibly fast speeds on it.

  • All Love Is Unrequited: In Ape Escape 3, Blue is shown to have a crush on Pink Monkey, and swears that after he defeats either Yumi or Kei that he will go on a date with her.
    Monkey Blue: "Then I'll....I'll ask Pink out for a date! And then....(sinister laughter)
  • Badass Biker: More like a Badass Unicycler, but still.
  • Gratuitous English: In the anime, he often says a few short lines in English. To be fair, what he says actually fits in context, and some of his lines are done quite well.
  • King Mook: He is basically a boss version of the monkeys that wear blue shorts, as both are faster then the other types.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: In the anime, his clothes and actions are a Shout-Out to Indiana Jones.
  • Second Love: To Aki in SaruSaru Big Mission.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Before his fight against Jimmy, Blue Monkey states he holds nothing against him and claims to be doing it for a good cause:
    Blue Monkey: "Don't take this personally. I'm doing this for all the little monkeys out there!"

Monkey Yellow/Yellow Monkey/Ukki Yellow

The fat, goofy and ambiguously gay member of the group. He often utilizes sumo techniques in battle.

Monkey Pink/Pink Monkey/Ukki Pink

Although her pop idol status remains the same throughout the series, her clothes change like the rest of the group. She resembles a typical pop singer in 2, a princess in 3, and a schoolgirl in Saru Saru Big Mission and the anime.

  • Blondes are Evil
  • Evil Diva: Possibly the crowning example.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper
  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Debi Derryberry, voice of Coco Bandicoot and Jimmy Neutron.
  • Idol Singer: Pink desires to be a famous singer, and even sings an Ear Worm in two of the games. Averted in the anime, ironically.
  • Pink Means Feminine
  • Yandere: The song Banana Heartbreak implies this, especially the last few lines:
    Don't you see I love you, don't you see I love you
    I can't spend the rest of my life, I can't spend the rest of my life CRYING
    So I'll spend the rest of my life, so I'll spend my entire life chasing you! HERE I COME!

Monkey White/White Monkey/Ukki White

  • Evil Genius: His battles always involve one of his own creations.
  • King Mook: Although there are white shorted monkeys in the series, he's actually closer to the green shorts monkeys, as both have goggles and use machinery to attack.

Monkey Red/Red Monkey/Ukki Red

  • Gasshole: Uses a fart based martial art in Ape Escape 3.
  • King Mook: The monkeys in red shorts are the powerhouse monkeys, and Red is certainly in the best shape of the Freaky Monkey Five.
  • Playing with Fire: He also uses two flaming torches in Ape Escape 3.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: He's forced into this situation in the anime. Due to his multiple losses at the hands of the female protagonists (Casi, Helga, and Natalie), Specter makes Red wear a dress and act as girly as possible. He warms up to it and even knits a quilt with Hegla and Natalie, but afterwards he reverts back to his old self.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: He can suplex a T-Rex onto you in Ape Escape 2.

Dr. Tomoki

An eccentric scientist who teams up with Specter in Ape Escape 3 with a plan to split the Earth in two. Turns out years ago he was a colleague of Aki and the Professor. After a disastrous experiment which left a helmet permanently grafted to his head, he became an outcast to society and hid.

    Other Characters 

The Pipotrons/Apetrons/Pipotron Brothers

Three experimental monkeys that escaped the lab in which they were created.The trio includes Red, the calm but strong leader, Blue, the talkative speedster, and Yellow, the unintelligible marksman.The anime portrays them as goofy klutzes with the goal of becoming "big". They started out as the Big Bads of season two, demoted to the Quirky Mini Boss Squad once Specter hijacks the plot

  • Anti-Hero
  • Attention Whore: In the anime. All of their schemes are wacky attempts to become famous (or "big", as they frequently put it).
  • Big Bads: In the first eight episodes of season two and in Ape Quest.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: The Pipotrons in the anime are VERY different to the ones in the games. In the anime, they're completely goofy. In Pumped and Primed, they were mysterious, threatening, and thanks to their intermission videos, really creepy.
  • Goldfish Poop Gang: In the anime.
  • Heel-Face Turn: In Pumped and Primed.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Twice in the anime. The first time they had to detach a piece of a rocket in order to get Spike to Specter's base, and later in the series finale where Specter tries to shoot the heroes' Humongous Mecha only for the Pipotrons' mecha to take it instead. Both are Disney Villain Deaths.
  • Humongous Mecha: The Pipotrons use a mecha the size of Earth itself in the finale of the anime. It's crudely made in comparison to the equally huge mechas the heroes and villains are using though.
  • The Unintelligible: In Pumped and Primed, they speak odd sounding gibberish with distorted voices. Red speaks in a deep murmer, Blue speaks with a higher pitched voiced of mostly vowels, and Yellow speaks only in beep noises. In Ape Escape 3, they sound much like any other monkey. Subverted in Academy and the anime, where Pipotron Red and Blue can speak perfect English or Japanese (still distorted in the games), whereas Pipotron Yellow talks in beeps in the games and Pokémon Speak in the anime.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Happens to them in both Pumped and Primed and the anime.

Helga/Haruka

A young girl around Spike's age. She first appeared in Ape Escape: Pumped & Primed, where she was the previous champion of the tournament that Spike and company enter. Her father mysteriously went missing, and she's determined to find him.

  • Dark and Troubled Past: Her home was broken into and her father was taken away in the process.
  • Designated Love Interest: To Spike, which is implied in the ending of Pumped & Primed, and is taken to the next level in the anime.
  • Disappeared Dad: He was kidnapped and she's still searching for him. The culprits were the Pipotrons.
  • Kid Hero
  • Leitmotif: A depressing piano tune that lets you know about her dark and troubled past.
  • Troubled, but Cute
  • The Woobie: Especially in Pumped & Primed. Everyone else's intermission videos range from light-hearted to comedic to just plain strange, but Helga's...they're just plain depressing.
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