Martin Blank is a mutant who was born with monkey-like features and stayed in an orphanage. He was always teased as a kid and it continued as he grew up. When the orphanage could no longer take care of him, Martin worked at the circus. They wanted him to dress up in a monkey suit and entertain the crowd with his awesome agility and gorilla-like strength. He was constantly teased and laughed at so he left the circus after a week. He then meets Spider-Man and they become acquaintances. He told Spider Man he wanted to be his partner but Spider Man just laughed at the idea. Gibbon became enraged and attacks Spidey for laughing at him. Spider Man brushes off his assault and leaves the Gibbon upset and frustrated.
Gibbon was created by Stan Lee and John Romita Sr. and first appeared in Amazing Spider-man 110 (1972).
Major Story Arcs
Kraven the Hunter approaches the Gibbon and tells him he has the potential to become something special. He gives the Gibbon a potion that "unleashes the beast within him" and fills him with animal rage. The Gibbon attacks but Kraven manages to dominate the fight and establish some type of mindlink. He tells the Gibbon with his ability and strength linked with Kraven's mind, they can triumph over Spider Man. Gibbon attacks Spider Man on a rooftop and Kraven instructs him to kill Spider Man. The Gibbon's head is throbbing with pain and refuses to kill Spider Man. He releases Spider Man but the mental strain was too much and the Gibbon falls off the roof. Spider Man saves the Gibbon's life and realized that Martin wasn't responsible for what he tried to do.
Marty would work as a grip on a program called "On the Trail" and the narrator wanted more action footage of Spider Man to remain a top syndicated show on television. Marty claimed he could find Spider Man in New York but he had a secret agenda of his own. He wanted to find Spider Man so he could prove to himself and everyone else that he is as good as the wallcrawler. The chopper they were in finds Spider Man and Marty changes into his Gibbon costume. He leaps from the chopper and pursues Spider Man on the New York rooftops. Spider Man tries to talk to Marty but he refuses to listen to reason so the wallcrawler knocks him out with one punch. The criminal known as the Beetle was also following Spider Man and the Gibbon and decides to take advantage of the situation. The Beetle slams into a brick wall and it begins to topple over the two combatants. Spidey grabs the unconscious Gibbon and tosses him to safety as the brick wall lands on Spider Man.
Legion of Losers and reformation
The Gibbon would later team up with Kangaroo, Grizzly and the Spot and be known as the Legion of Losers. Planning only to continue damaging Spider-Man, Gibbon and Grizzly are shocked to see Kangaroo and Spot planning bank robberies. The Legion is successful in a capture of Spider-Man, but later released him as they decided that he is "an all-right guy". Gibbon and Grizzly team up with Spider-Man to assist in bringing the rest of the Legion to justice. The team quickly disbanded with Gibbon and Grizzly trying to become reformed heroes. After a few attempts however, the two started returing to their old ways.
Gibbon was later seen at the Bar with No Name attending the wake of Stilt Man. He had begun to mutate, looking more like a real gibbon. He was upset and depressed that no one knew who he was or paid any attention to him. Princess Python would dance with Marty after he bought her a drink and the two would later end up in a relationship. Marty apparently survived the assault by the Punisher after he blew up the bar but he suffered some physical and mental trauma. Most of Marty's fur was burned off during the explosion and he bandaged himself up to conceal his face. Marty was so upset with his appearance that he even covered the mirrors in his home with newspaper. Marty also attended the Survivor's Guild which was a therapy group for some of the criminals that survived the Punisher's assault. Marty was still involved with Princess Python but she treated him like crap. Marty would ask the Tinkerer to provide documents for a new identity so he could purchase a gun. Marty wanted to kill the Punisher but never had the guts to pull the trigger when he had the chance. Marty gave up the gun and Castle told the Gibbon to go home and behave.
Some months later, Gibbon, back to his criminal ways, joined a new group of supervillains named the Hateful Hexad and start robberies throughout the New York area. While on one robbery, Gibbon and the other members encounter both Spider-Man and Deadpool. The team fights the two heroes, but are soon stopped in their tracks when they encounter another supercreature named Itsy Bitsy. This creature killed most of the supervillain group, including, appearantly, Gibbon.
Powers and Abilities
The Gibbon has superhuman strength, speed, agility, dexterity, reflexes, coordination, balance, and endurance.