The Umbrella Academy Animators Talk Planet of the Apes Influence for Pogo
One of the most peculiar characters of The Umbrella Academy was Pogo, an intelligent chimpanzee who is also Reginal Hargreeves’ closest assistant. Pogo played a pivotal role in developing the story in Season 1, keeping some of Hargreeves’ darkest secrets. But right before the season’s finale, he got killed by a furious Vanya.
Much to the fans’ pleasure, a younger and not-yet-talking version of the chimpanzee made its return in the sophomore season. While talking with ComicBook, some animators from Weta Digital discussed some of the Planet of the Apes reference video they watched to get Baby Pogo in Netflix’s series.
“We’ve been looking at apes and baby apes for a long time,” said Aidan Martin, an animation supervisor at Weta Digital. “So we didn’t have to go back far in the reference archives to find a lot of cute reference. We had a lot of similar baby chimps on the last Planet of the Apes, so we already had a really big stockpile of baby chimp reference at that point.”
In the same interview, art director Gino Acevedo also revealed that they could study real chimpanzees.
“Anatomically and texture-wise we can’t get any better than using the real thing,” he said. “We’ve got a fantastic relation with our Wellington Zoo that allows us to get in there… not to get in with the chimps, but to get up close and personal with the chimps and to be able to get some great photographs and great video footage and things like that.”
In the sophomore season of the show, Pogo had a less relevant role. However, fans got the chance to see his failed space trip and his subsequential transformation into a human after receiving a transfusion of human blood.
The Umbrella Academy Season 2 is available on Netflix.
Did you like Baby Pogo? Would you like to see more of him in The Umbrella Academy Season 3? Let us know in the comments section below.
Recommended Reading: The Umbrella Academy Vol. 3