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David
Biographical information
Aliases Dave
Davey
New Boy
Stuart Little
Garbage-Eating, Money-Pilfering, Sewer-Dwelling, Rabies-Carrying Rodent
The Rat
Sniveling Would-Be Traitor
The Sixth Animorph (editorial mistake)
The Ill-Fated Animorph
Species Human (formerly)
White Rat {nothlit)
Gender Male
Eye color Brown
Hair color Blond
Born c.1984
Family Unnamed NSA father (Controller)
Unnamed mother (Controller)
Occupation Student (formerly)
Affiliation Animorphs (briefly)
Behind the scenes
First appearance The Discovery
Last appearance The Return
The Ultimate (mentioned)
[Source]|
"Maybe you want to be the big hero, Jake, but not me. I have this power now. I'm going to use it."
"The Yeerks will never stop looking for you."
"They'll never find me. See, all I have to do is acquire some other human morph, right? I can be human for two hours at a time. I even have a person in mind. And using my powers, I can take anything I want. Anything. I can be a millionaire if I want."
"If the Yeerks don't get you, we will."
"Yeah, I know. But already there used to be six of you and now there are just five. Pretty soon, Jake, it'll be four."
―David and Jake[src]

David was a human who found the morphing cube and became the seventh Animorph. However, he soon proved to be treacherous and sociopathic, attempting to betray and later murder the Animorphs, deriving pleasure from his actions, and going as far as murdering Saddler in order to morph into him and live his life. Not wanting the Animorphs to commit murder, Cassie arranged to David to be trapped as a white rat, and was left marooned on some rocks.

Biography

Becoming an Animorph

"So, look, maybe you like me, maybe you don't like me. I don't care. I'm here. If you use the blue box on me I'm one of you. But I'm not going to get pushed around. And I'm not going to be all, 'Oh, thank you, wise and wonderful Animorphs, for letting me join.' If I'm in, I'm in all the way. If not... I guess I'll walk away and try to figure out what to do. On my own." [...]
"Welcome to the Animorphs, new boy."
―David and Marco[src]

David had just moved to the Animorphs' hometown and began attending their school. On his way home from school one day, he had the misfortune of finding the Escafil device in the abandoned construction site where Elfangor died. When he tried to sell it on the Internet, Visser Three showed up at his house to claim it. The Animorphs intervened and escaped with the Escafil Device and David, but were forced to leave his parents to be infested.[1]

David had now seen too much to go free and could never again return to his normal life. Realizing this, the Animorphs debated between two choices: make him one of them or abandon him to the Yeerks. They narrowly decided to let him join their ranks, but David chafed under the authority of his saviors and slowly began to resent them. Forced to live in Cassie's barn and forbidden to go out in public as himself, David began using his morphing power to achieve the illusion of normal life again, even if it meant committing crimes in the process.[2]

Betraying the Animorphs

"You think David may have attacked Tobias?"
"Ax, I do not know what to think. I just keep hoping this is all some big misunderstanding. How do we fight against a traitor? An Animorph?"
Ax and Jake[src]

The growing schism between David and the Animorphs came to a head when the team was cornered by Visser Three on a mission. Desperate to survive, David attempted to negotiate with the Visser and turned against his teammates. He later took advantage of an opportunity to attack Visser Three, and after the mission rationalized his actions as a bluff, but the Animorphs no longer trusted him so he decided to rebel. In a single night David slayed a red-tailed hawk he thought was Tobias, defeated Jake in a duel between his lion and Jake's tiger, captured and acquired Marco, almost killed Ax with a baseball bat, and would have killed Rachel in their fight between his golden eagle and her great horned owl if Tobias had not intervened and driven David off.[3]

Confident from his one-man assault- albeit with the Animorphs playing to his ego by concealing the fact that he hadn't killed Tobias- David attempted to negotiate with the Animorphs to reclaim the blue box, intending to use it to form his own gang of morph-capable thieves. He also schemed to regain a normal life by acquiring and posing as Saddler, a cousin of Jake and Rachel's, barely alive after a car accident. In order to defeat David for good, the Animorphs manipulated his arrogance and insecurity to trap him in the body of a white rat, making him believe that he was forcing Rachel to take him to the disassembled box while the other four were trapped as roaches in a bottle when in reality the box was hidden elsewhere and Tobias was easily able to break the bottle. After he was trapped in a cage until the time limit ran out, the Animorphs abandoned him on a desolate rock in the middle of the ocean, with only other rats and his despair for company.[4]

David's Return

"Without Crayak, without help, I can't beat you, Rachel. And I'm tired of trying. But I won't go back. I'd rather die than go back to that island. You'll have to kill me."
"I won't do that."
"Kill me. I'd rather die than go on like this. Rather die than go back to that place!"
"You're going back to the island."
"I won't go back. Kill me, Rachel! If there's any humanity left in you at all, please kill me."
"I;m one of the good guys."
"Then do the good thing!"
―David and Rachel[src]

Over a year later, as the war with the Yeerks was nearing its end, David escaped the island through the intervention of the extra-dimensional being Crayak. Crayak made a deal with David: if David could persuade Rachel to abandon her friends and serve him, then Crayak would restore David to his human form. To accomplish this, David recruited two henchmen, used Crayak's influence to capture Rachel and Cassie, and then wove a story about being able to command other rats. Unfortunately for him, Rachel saw through this ruse and refused to submit to either David or Crayak himself. Crayak abandoned David and withdrew, leaving him still trapped in the rat body and facing the mercies of his worst enemy. Unwilling to continue living as a rat, David begged Rachel to kill him. Rachel's decision, and David's final fate, were never revealed.[5]

Morphs

Morph Book Acquired
Golden Eagle The Discovery
Lion
Cockroach
Seagull The Threat
Flea
Human (adult male Controller)
Human (Marco) The Solution
Orca
Human (Saddler)
Rattlesnake
White Rat (trapped in morph)
  • According to the Anibase, David has a total 11 morphs in the series.


Fighting Style

"I turned and jumped him. Dug with my claws. Bit with my teeth. But David was bigger and more experienced with the morph. His back claws ripped at my belly. His teeth, needle sharp from months in the wild, sliced my face. I was losing. Losing the fight. Losing to David!"
Rachel[src]

As a combatant, David was aggressive and reckless, favoring a battle style similar to that of Rachel. While capable of approaching battle in a tactical manner, he preferred to just overwhelm his opponents with savage force. This was demonstrated in David's battle morphs for land, sea, and air: the lion, orca, and golden eagle respectively. All are apex predators, large and dangerous. David generally preferred large and powerful morphs as a rule, and did not hesitate to morph other human beings as well, in violation of the Animorphs' code of conduct.

David's predilection for apex predators can be seen in the very first morph he chose - the golden eagle. He chose the golden eagle specifically because it was the largest and most powerful bird that Cassie had available at the clinic, despite the other Animorphs advising him that the other possible morph, a merlin, would be more agile and useful in flight. His main battle morph was a lion, which surpassed Jake's tiger in terms of combat ability and had the additional advantage that the lion's mane protected him from attempts to attack his vulnerable throat.

When David turned against the Animorphs, his morphs came in handy. David first killed a red-tailed hawk (mistaking it for Tobias) while in golden eagle morph. His lion morph gave him an advantage against Jake's tiger when they battled in the mall. David also morphed an orca to battle the Animorphs; the Animorphs morphed into dolphins to both invade and retreat, and the orca gave David a massive advantage. Luckily Cassie was able to use her old humpback whale morph to drive him off. A rattlesnake gave him the perfect morph to not only spy on the Animorphs, but threaten them while they were in smaller, more vulnerable morphs.

In addition to all of the above morphs, David had the usual transportation and infiltration morphs that the other Animorphs had, such as a cockroach, a seagull, and a flea. He also acquired a male Human-Controller for one infiltration mission. David was eventually trapped as a rat nothlit.

Personality

"I felt sorry for David and sorry for me. Sorry for what the war had done to us both. It wasn't David's fault that he was a rat, that he was insane. He was what we had made him. But that didn't make him any less dangerous. We couldn't control him. We couldn't trust him. And on the loose, he could destroy the entire planet."
Rachel[src]

David's primary character trait throughout his appearances is his fiercely independent nature. He undermined Jake's authority as leader of the Animorphs several times and told Marco he didn't tell him what to do. This independent nature ended up driving a wedge between him and the Animorphs.

Hork-Bajir Chronicles David Trilogy ad Nick Mag ad Sept 1998

Nickelodeon Magazine advertisement for the David Trilogy and The Hork-Bajir Chronicles.

David was motivated primarily by self-interest, further setting him apart from the other Animorphs. Shortly after becoming an Animorph David suggested using morphing as a means to steal money and valuables, and his ultimate plan was to take back the blue box from the Animorphs and create a gang of morph-capable thieves which he would then lead. This plan highlights David's habit of underestimating others; he never considered the possibility that his new "subordinates" would betray him as he had the Animorphs and could not come up with a retort when Rachel suggested it, beyond expressing confidence that he wouldn't make the Animorphs' mistake by recruiting someone 'smarter' than himself. Beneath this selfishness, though, David was driven by a deeper desire: the need to reclaim the normal life he lost. He went to extreme measures to recreate the simulation of a normal life, first breaking into hotels and later impersonating Saddler in order to have something akin to a normal life again.

As he became more distrustful of the Animorphs, David revealed a ruthless and arrogant personality. He had some loose scruples - he stated that he would never attack a human being, although this only protected the Animorphs while they were human, leaving him 'free' to attack while they were morphed. He even drew this distinction when talking about himself, arguing that an occasion where he broke into a motel room wasn't a crime because an eagle had broken the window rather than him. (However, it must be noted that Tobias made this very same distinction about himself a short time earlier when acquiring clothing for David, and David may have gotten the notion from him). He was also highly arrogant, dismissing the Animorphs as foolish for focusing on the Yeerks when their powers would allow them to take anything they wanted and repeatedly stating that he was far smarter than any of the Animorphs. This arrogance was used against him. Cassie masterminded the plan to trap him as a rat - she anticipated David's need to build his own ego and humiliate Rachel, which allowed her to manipulate his actions.

Interestingly, David could be said to be an amalgamation of all the other Animorphs in personality - he was decisive and instinctive like Jake, reckless and violent like Rachel, predatory and solitary like Tobias, discerning and manipulative like Cassie, and sarcastic and clever like Marco. These personality traits made David not a very viable member of the team, as he did not mesh well with the group's dynamics. They did, however, make him a survivor, and it can be said that he was perhaps the most dangerous enemy the Animorphs ever faced.

Trivia

  • David is referred to by the editors of the Animorphs series as "the sixth Animorph" because they believed that the Animorphs was a term reserved for humans who could morph, and thus did not include Ax as he was an Andalite. However, the overall books explicitly state that Ax is the official sixth member of the Animorphs, therefore making David the seventh Animorph.
  • David's parents were never named.
  • David owned two pets: a fat gray tabby cat named Megadeth and a king cobra named Spawn (prompting Marco to note that he had bad taste in music but good taste in comics).
  • David was proven to be skilled at the morphing process, having taught himself to morph clothing without assistance and managing multiple morphs in a row. In the beginning, the Animorphs struggled with rapid morphing, hence why Cassie was chosen to defeat the Veleek in The Andalite's Gift, as she had the tolerance to pull it off. Yet David, lacking the Animorphs' practice and experience, is able to handle it relatively well, and has also shown, with the exception of the golden eagle, to not lose himself to the morphed animal's instincts.
  • In Alternamorphs #2 The Next Passage, the narrator is extremely similar to David, finding the morphing cube in the exact same way David did, being forced into the Animorphs in the same way he was, and joining in the exact same period in the story that David joined. In one of the story's bad endings, the narrator is trapped as a fly by Rachel, reflecting David's fate in the main story.
  • Jake hallucinated being attacked by David as a rat in The Familiar.

Appearances

References

  1. The Discovery
  2. The Threat
  3. The Threat
  4. The Solution
  5. The Return
Animorphs
Animorphs Jake | Rachel | Tobias | Cassie | Marco | Ax | David
Auxiliary Animorphs James | Collette | Timmy | Kelly | Craig | Erica | Julio | Liam | Tricia | Jessie | Judy | Ray