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"We have returned to Earth nearly 2,000 years before its destruction. And there's another reason for us to keep silent: our human captors will not be edified to learn that one day their world will crack like an egg and burn to a cinder because of an ape war of aggression. Apes, at this instance in time, cannot yet talk. For the moment, we should follow their example."
―Dr Milo

Dr. Milo was the missing link between Zira and Cornelius' situation in the second movie and their surprise re-appearance in the third. Milo, we are told, was an old friend of Zira and Cornelius who, on an expedition in the Forbidden Zone, discovered the wreckage of Taylor's ship and somehow restored it to working order. The three Apes test-flew the ship at the moment the Alpha-Omega Bomb detonated and followed Taylor's path in reverse, leading them back to his time. Milo was perhaps the leader of the group and forbade them from talking to the humans until they had judged the situation. Shortly after their arrival Milo was killed by a primitive gorilla while being held in the city zoo. Zira and Cornelius named their child "Milo", though his name was changed by Armando to protect his identity.

In other media

In the 2011 novel Conspiracy of the Planet of the Apes and its 2018 sequel Death of the Planet of the Apes, Dr. Milo is one of the central characters. A scientist and inventor, he spent most of his time studying and repairing ancient artefacts, whilst also designing new surgical instruments for Dr. Galen, the husband of his cousin Liet. Cornelius was his old academy room-mate and confidante, whom he accompanied on an expedition to the Forbidden Zone and found evidence of ancient machines. He attempted to build a working glider with his colleague Dr. Seraph but was unsuccessful in testing it. Later, he spoke to Landon in Galen's laboratory, who confirmed Milo's wildest imaginings about flight. Forging Dr. Zaius' authorization, Milo took a team of chimp scientists, including Dr. Seraph, Dr. Pinchus and Tellah, back to the Forbidden Zone where he located Landon's flag and the raft, and eventually recovered the Liberty 1. Finding it impossible to fully repair the water-logged circuitry, the arrival of a second, almost identical, ship - the Liberty 2 - allows Milo to complete his work. He attempts to hide the fugitive Zira and Cornelius within bulky space-suits when gorilla pursuers arrive, but a fire-fight breaks out and Seraph launches the ship to save its three occupants.

In BOOM! Studios' Exile on the Planet of the Apes and Planet of the Apes: Cataclysm, Milo's earlier years are explored further. Here, Milo was a friend of the controversial orangutan scientist Doctor Cato, and later became aware of General Aleron's secret human community hidden just inside the Forbidden Zone. Aleron allowed Milo to examine the human artefacts of the ancient city but Milo had little interest in Aleron's political aims. Milo, and Cato's former pupil Prisca, were present when Zaius led an army to annihilate the humans, leading to Aleron's death. Milo was sent to The Reef by Zaius but was given access to his scientific research there, in order to study the after effects of the Moon's destruction. He was freed by Zaius to take part in a mission to Painted Valley with Cornelius and Vitus. After being captured and imprisoned by human mutants, Milo escaped and tried to warn Ape City of the dangers, but was dismissed. He fled once again to the Forbidden Zone and, using the map Taylor had made for Cornelius, recovered Taylor's ship. Salvaging missing parts from Brent's crashed second ship, he was joined by Cornelius, Zira and Lucius as the ape army invaded the Forbidden Zone, but Lucius was killed shortly before their launch.

The short story Milo's Tale, written by Ty Templeton for the anthology Planet of the Apes: Tales from the Forbidden Zone, covers events that occur weeks to days before and during the events of the second film, offering an alternative back-story for Milo that also reveals things about the the larger world beyond the devastated New York. Milo leads a chimpanzee expedition to New York from a separate continent via sea ship, confirming that there are apes outside of the future United States. The expedition is to investigate an object that fell from the sky, Taylor's ship. He hopes it is ancient human technology, revealing that where he came from, apes are aware of humans originally being the dominant species and their hand in the devastation of the world. They also bring electrical technology, such as an autogyro, generators and trucks. Milo appears to be unaware that apes inhabit this part of the world, believing it to be a wasteland. It is also revealed that where he comes from, gorillas are much more tyrannical and kill apes. After salvaging the water damaged ship, Milo and his team witness Brent's ship falling from the sky. Milo travels to the site by autogyro and discovers the buried body of Skipper. Cornelius and Zira arrive on horseback after following the autogyro, having opted to investigate the Forbidden Zone after Zaius and the gorilla army departed, and are confused and astounded when they discover Milo, his autogyro, and the damaged ship. Milo believes they are slaves that escaped from the gorilla army, while Cornelius and Zira are confused by his claim of coming from another continent, stating that there is nothing but ocean beyond the mainland. Milo also claims to have no knowledge of the Sacred Scrolls and the concept of apes not killing one another is quite foreign to him. Fearing the gorillas will arrive soon, Milo takes them in his autogyro after having salvaged any working components from second ship and destroying what remained. Cornelius and Zira are awestruck by the machinery and the first ship, which is undergoing reconstruction with the salvaged parts. After entering the ship and seeing a space suit with Taylor's name, Cornelius and Zira share of their encountering him and how different he was from other humans. Milo is astounded to hear of living humans, as there are apparently no humans on the continent he came from and he has never seen a living one before. A small group of gorillas arrive to investigate the party of chimps, the latter of whom open fire due to their fear of gorillas. In the commotion, Milo seals himself and his new acquaintances in the ship to avoid injury from the fire-fight. He activates the still functioning booster rockets in the hopes of killing the gorillas, which activates the ship's launch sequence and sends the three apes into space. From space, the trio witness the destruction of the Earth and blame the gorillas, believing their nature for war finally caused mass destruction, echoing the words spoken by Taylor at the end of the first film.[1]


  • Sal Mineo was offered the role of Dr. Milo at the recommendation of his friend Roddy McDowall. It was reported at the end of November 1970 that Arthur P. Jacobs had added the new ape character in a casting switch. It has also been suggested that the script was later re-written to kill the character off earlier than planned because Mineo found the makeup so uncomfortable,[2] but a screenplay dated 2 October 1970 already included Milo and depicted his death as it is seen in the movie. It is true, however, that Mineo suffered severe panic attacks brought on by the claustrophobic ape appliances. McDowall recalled seeing the terror in his eyes and warned the director he was going to have trouble with Sal, while Kim Hunter remembered, "We did have to hug Sal a lot. It was very, very difficult for him being confined in the appliances. He was not comfortable at all being a chimpanzee."[3] Milo's death scene was shot on 22 and 23 December 1970.[4]


External Links


  1. 'Milo's Tale', by Ty Templeton - Planet of the Apes: Tales from the Forbidden Zone (2017)
  2. Escape from the Planet of the Apes Trivia at IMDb
  3. Behind the Planet of the Apes
  4. Sal Mineo: A Biography, by Michael Gregg Michaud

Dr. Milo in Marvel's 'Escape from the Planet of the Apes' (German colour version); illustration by Rico Rival Dr. Milo in Foster & Whitty's 'Within The Planet of the Apes'; illustration by Neil Foster Dr. Milo in Mike McColm's 'Rider From The World's End'; illustration by Mike McColm Dr. Milo in MR Comics' 'Catch A Falling Star'; illustration by Steve Molnar & Bernie Mireault

Planet of the Apes - The Original Pentalogy Series
Planet of the Apes (APJ) Movies
Planet of the Apes | Beneath the Planet of the Apes | Escape from the Planet of the Apes | Conquest of the Planet of the Apes | Battle for the Planet of the Apes
Main Ape Characters
Zira | Cornelius | Zaius | Ursus | Milo | Caesar | Lisa | Virgil | Aldo | Cornelius II | Lawgiver
Supporting Ape Characters
Hunt Leader | Julius | Marcus | Galen | Honorius | Maximus | President of the Assembly | Lucius | Minister | Minister | Frank | Mandemus
Main Human Characters
George Taylor | Nova | John Landon | Dodge | John Brent | Mendez XXVI | Caspay | Ongaro | Albina | Fat Man | Lewis Dixon | Stephanie Branton | Otto Hasslein | Armando | Breck | MacDonald (Conquest) | MacDonald (Battle) | Kolp | Mendez I
Supporting Human Characters
Stewart | Maddox | Verger | General Winthrop | General Faulkner | The President | Chairman of the President's Committee of Inquiry | E-1 | E-2 | Inspector Hoskyns | TV Newscaster | Mrs Riley | Mutant Captain | Jake | Jake's friend
Horse | Gorilla in Zoo
Items / Weapons
Sacred Scrolls | Human Doll | Alpha-Omega Bomb | Grape Juice Plus
Important Events / Battles
Ape Rebellion
Bellatrix | Orion | Earth's Moon | Ape City | Forbidden Zone | Statue of Liberty | Queensboro Plaza | Radio City Music Hall | Grand Central Terminal | New York Stock Exchange | St. Patrick's Cathedral' | New York City | Jefferson Public School | Los Angeles | Los Angeles Zoo | Forbidden City | Ape City (Caesar's City) | Council
Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes | Exile on the Planet of the Apes | Planet of the Apes: Ursus| Planet of the Apes/Green Lantern | Kong on the Planet of the Apes | Tarzan on the Planet of the Apes
Soundtrack Music
Planet of the Apes (Soundtrack Album) | Beneath the Planet of the Apes (Soundtrack Album) | Escape from the Planet of the Apes (Soundtrack Album) | Conquest of the Planet of the Apes (Soundtrack Album) | Battle for the Planet of the Apes (Soundtrack Album) | Music Of The Planet Of The Apes