"Monkey Puzzle": In a field somewhere, a monkey finishes typing the epilogue from William Shakespeare's The Tempest.

Quote1.png Well, it's just... there are no stories in Limbo. It's one of the conditions of existence here. I don't know. If anyone could do it, it would be you. I don't think you're really in Limbo. You're just passing through... Quote2.png

Animal Man #25 is an issue of the series Animal Man (Volume 1) with a cover date of July, 1990. It was published on May 31, 1990.

Appearing in "Monkey Puzzle"

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Synopsis for "Monkey Puzzle"

In a field somewhere, a monkey finishes typing the epilogue from William Shakespeare's The Tempest.

Elsewhere, Animal Man steps off his front porch into a surreal landscape. He packs a bag, says goodbye to his pets, and sets off to find out what's behind all that's happened. Outside seems to be some kind of strange graveyard, and there, Buddy meets Merryman, who explains that they are in Comic Book Limbo. He claims Buddy has been there recently, but forgotten, since he left.

Elsewhere, the monkey finishes writing Animal Man #25, before collapsing, gripping the script in his paw.

Merryman introduces Buddy to the Inferior Five, and explains that Limbo's residents are all waiting to be written back into continuity. Awkward Man reveals that the monkey is dying, and Merryman concludes that they must find him and help him. In a small town of out-of-continuity characters, they find the monkey, and Animal Man resolves to take him to the City of Formation, to find out what's happening.

Animal Man carries the dying monkey for more than five years, hoping to find the city. Many of the characters he encounters send him in the wrong direction and confuse him. Eventually, he winds up back at his own house. He realizes that his pets have died, and the monkey he has been carrying is long dead.

Buddy notices the script clutched in the dead monkey's paw, and removes it by snapping the animal's fingers. He reads the script, and realizes the true nature of his existence as a comic book character. He reads the ending, and follows directions which lead to him creating a small skeleton key out of paper. He steps outside and opens a gate with the key.

Buddy is no longer in Limbo, and after wandering the streets from a time, he finds his destination. When the door opens, a man named Grant invites him inside.



  • The arch in Comic Book Limbo says "Facilis Discenus Averno" which translates to "The Descent to Hell Is Easy." This is a reference to a quote from Virgil's Aeneid.

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