Skull Island was the setting for the 2017 fantasy-adventure movie Kong: Skull Island and its prequel comic Skull Island: The Birth of Kong.
Located somewhere in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, Skull Island remains hidden from outside view by the presence of a constant, massive storm front which prevented anything other than accidental landings. At first glance seeming to be a tropical paradise, it is in fact home to many species of plant and animal which are inimical to human life.
Although inaccessible by regular means, over the millennia many humans have ended up making landfall on Skull Island’s unforgiving shore, usually aboard a wrecked ship, but occasionally as a result of downed aircraft. These unfortunate souls don’t tend to last very long in the hostile environment, but a rare few - such as Flight Lieutenant Hank Marlow - have survived and made it their home.
It has been theorised by Monarch staff that the proliferation of supersized organisms which originate there is due to an unknown compound unique to Skull Island.
Skull Island is a large landmass, and has an extremely varied topography. A few of the more notable areas are listed below.
The highest mountain of the vast range which occupies much of the island, Skull Peak’s tip thrusts far above the cloudline and is home to the avian predators known as Leafwings. It holds a special reverence for the Iwi people who inhabit the island; they see it as one of the spiritual centres of their world, and refer to it as “The Mountain of the Far Heavens.”
The Bamboo Forest
Home to the enormous spider-creatures dubbed Mother Longlegs, the Bamboo forest is a dense proliferation of enormous bamboo. Thick as a man’s leg, the forest is capable of hiding many other dangers, as it is impossible to see farther than a few feet in any direction. The natives fittingly refer to this place as “The Nest of the Walkers.”
The Bone Graveyard
Known to the Iwi as “The Valley of the Fallen Gods,” The Bone Graveyard is a hellish, stinking pit filled with numerous geysers and vents which originate deep underground. It gets its name from the countless skeletons which litter the place as a result of the Skullcrawlers’ feeding habits. Amongst these remains lie the bodies of Kong’s parents, whose skeletons hold each other’s hands in death as they did in life.
The Paper Forest
A wooded area consisting of what appear to be large, dry trees, the Paper Forest - or The Plain of the Restless Trees - is home to the carnivorous Spore Mantises. It is an unusually dry area of the island, and is one of the hunting grounds of the Skullwalkers.
The Iwi Encampment
Sitting on the banks of one of the great rivers which criss-cross Skull Island, the Iwi Encampment is home to many ruins as well as the well-tended abodes of the Iwi. The “modern” part of the town has been constructed to be as much a part of the surrounding landscape as possible, and many of the Iwi’s dwellings are virtually indistinguishable from the backdrop. The tribesfolk refer to their home as “The Temple of Kong”, and his influence can be seen across the whole habitation, with carvings and painted murals being common throughout.
The most holy place in the settlement is in the bowels of a washed up oil tanker. There, the Iwi have created a shrine to Kong, and have painted a history of their god upon the walls and stalagmites which cut through its bowels.
Despite all of this, the most striking feature of the Encampment is the gargantuan wall which seperates the Iwi from the rest of the island. Built primarily from the huge trees which surround the village, the wall stretches hundreds of feet tall and is built to withstand an onslaught from even the largest and most bloodthirsty of the islands’ inhabitants. It’s outward side is covered in sharpened tree trunks whose blood-soaked tips are testament to the effectiveness of its construction. However, whether the Iwi were responsible for the creation of the wall themselves, or simply inherited the barrier and continue its maintenance are unknown.
The only known human inhabitants of Skull Island are the Iwi tribe, and (formerly) downed pilots Hank Marlow and Gunpei Ikari. When and how they arrived there is a mystery, but it is clear from their culture that they have been established on Skull Island for a very long time. Some of the creatures unique to Skull Island are listed below.
- Sirenjaws, a species of huge crocodilian.
- Death Jackals, cannibalistic pack predators.
- Psychovultures, extremely hostile avian creatures.
- Leafwings, a subspecies of the Psychovulture.
- Skullcrawlers, the subterranean apex predators of Skull Island.
- Magma Turtles, gigantic turtles with an unusual method of birth.
- Swamp Locusts, oversized carnivorous insects.
- Spore Mantises, parasitic predators with near-perfect camouflage.
- Sker Buffalo, a docile species of bovine.
- Mire Squid, aquatic ambush predators.
- Vinestranglers, an immense arboreal type of insect.
- Kongs, a breed of towering ape, now all but extinct.
- Mother Longlegs, a colossal spider-like beast with a distinctive method of hunting it’s prey.
- Giant Snakes, the island is home to a species of oversized snake.