What's tasty, good for you, and only takes sixty seconds to make? Oatmeal. And it's making the Yeerks more than a little crazy. Now Rachel, the other Animorphs, and Ax have a new weapon against the Yeerks. Sounds good, right?
Wrong. Because it means another trip to the Yeerk pool. And the possibility of running into Visser Three. And of not being able to get back up to the surface. The Animorphs and Ax have taken chances before and been very lucky. But this time their luck may be about to run out...
The Animorphs are walking through the woods after getting a half day at school, Rachel and Marco are trying to convince Jake to use their powers to help Ax better understand more about Earth's culture, when, in reality, a new Planet Hollywood is opening in town, but they can't get tickets, so they want to use their powers to gain access to the event, Rachel really wants to be there for the fashion show featuring outfits by Ralph Lauren and Marco is able to get Jake to cave into going by telling him Shaquille O'Neal will be there.
Later that night, the Animorphs are at the waterfront in their in their bird of prey morphs, flying high in the sky, and watching the outdoors event with their superior eyesight. As Rachel wheels around in a huge circle, which carries her closer to a skyscraper called the Kenny Building, she sees a man in an empty office on the next to highest floor, he picks up a chair and throws it at the window, shatering it. Rachel warns the others, to which Cassie was aware of as well, the man was going to jump. They fly towards the window just as the man runs straight out and begins plummeting towards the earth. Rachel grabs the man with her talons, but is dragged along with him, so she opens her wings which slows them down, but not by much. Tobias then swoops down and grabs the man's left arm, and Jake comes in grabing the back of the man's collar. Tobias instructs them to glide towards the water, not flap towards it. Cassie, Ax, and Marco, then arrive as Tobias tells them to line their wings at an angle for a level glide, the man begins falling speed slows down, but not enough to survive, but he's now moving forward towards the water's edge. As they reach it, they let the man go, but Rachel sees that he had sunk into the river and was now sutck in the mud at the bottom. She dives down towards the water, but can't fly out of the water. She quicly demorphs, swims to the surface to get some air, and begins morphing into dolphin. She heads back for the man, who had fought his way out a little, but not enough, and was now limp and motionless. Rachel buries he snout in the small of his back, bend him backwards, and kicks with her tail as the man is freed, she then pushes him up to the surface and noses him to the riverbank, where he is yanked up onto dry land and given CPR by Arnold Schwartzenegger.
The next day after school, they're at the mall food court where Rachel has many newspapers reporting what happened last night. Cassie wounders what will happen to George Edelman, the name of the man who jumped from the building, but Rachel feels doesn't really care, she's not responsible for him. Three days later, Rachel is in her still not completely-fixed house arguing with her sister, Jordan for throwing out leftover Chinese food, when their mom, Naomi comes home. She tells them about how she is representing George Edelman in a case, his family wants him permanently institutionalied, not just for trying to jump off a building, but the man claims that he has an alien called a "Yeerk" living in his head. The Animorphs later gather at the mental institution where Edelman was being kept, their plan is to break in, find Edelman, and see what he knows about the Yeerks, which was easier said than done because there was no open windows and it would be too far away to travel as flies or cockroaches. Luckily, a truck drives up and around the far side of the facility. Tobias flies off to check what kind of truck it is and he reports that its a food truck, so the plan was for three people to fly into the truck in bird morph and then go into cockroach morph and hide in the food and be carried in. Jake, Rachel, and Marco are chosen, they hide behind a dumpster and morph into seagullls. They wait until the coast is clear, and they fly in and demorph in the crowded truck. They then morph into cockroaches and take cover inside a box. They find out they're inside a crate of bananas, which turnouts that, there is a tarantula inside with them. They run, but the tarantula is faster, and it was now after Rachel. She leaps and tries to fly, but she only gets up to like two inches off the ground. Rachel tries to run, but the spider reared up and jams one of its legs down on her so fast, she didn't see it move. She tries to fight and twist her way out, but there was no escape and its fangs were now descending onto Rachel. Suddenly, the cook discovers the tarantula and panics, knocking over the boxes from his dolly and the crate smashes down onto the floor just inside the lobby. One person tries to stomp them and squishes a banana and gushes out goo all over the spider and Rachel, but that didn't stop the spider as it still had a hold on Rachel, straining to eat her. Just then Tobias spots Rachel, he plummets down and snatches the spider away. Jake tells everyone to move out, though Rachel moved a little slower because she lost a leg after Tobias got the spider away from her. Jake, Marco, and Rachel resume moving out and enter the kitchen, where they find an opening in the wall and enter into it. Cassie reports that she and Ax are in their raptor morphs and have found George Edelman on the second floor above the kitchen.
during the Kandrona starvation, the Yeerks discovered by accident that by eating maple and ginger flavored instant oatmeal, a Yeerk could survive, but it proved to be terribly addictive; it causes them to eliminate the need for Kandrona rays and drives them insane at the same time, it seemed that the oatmeal literally replaces some of a Yeerk's brain steam and once exposed, they could not resist it. He also explains that there is no way to get the Yeerk out of his head, it will live inside him forever.
they now have a weapon against the Yeerks
how far will they go into savagery to defeat the savage
go back to the Yeerk pool
Tobias informs them of an entrance located at a McDonald's, where, after spying on known Controllers
ask for a Happy Meal with extra Happy which is the password to enter sneak in as flies
Rachel become claustraphobic
Rachel hands Tobias a bat and he acquires it
they set off as bats
it was set on stun
finds Marco in his gorilla morph
Rachel sets the Dracon beam at maximum power, aims straight up at the ceiling and fires.
Edelman had escape
broke into the institution in her grizzly bear morph and thought-spoke to him. She told him to leave and not to kill himself again. She felt that some of the times when Edelman's was in charge and during the time, in between the mad ravings of the Yeerk, she wanted him to be free.
|Morpher||Morphs acquired||Morphs used|
|Jake||Mole||Peregrine Falcon, Seagull, Cockroach, Fly, Mole, Bat|
|Rachel||Mole||Bald Eagle, Bottlenose Dolphin, Seagull, Cockroach, Fly, Mole, Bat, Ant, African Elephant, Grizzly Bear|
|Cassie||Mole||Osprey, Fly, Mole, Bat, Wolf|
|Marco||Mole||Osprey, Seagull, Cockroach, Fly, Mole, Bat, Silverback Gorilla|
|Tobias||Mole, Bat||Human, Fly, Mole, Bat|
|Ax||Mole||Human, Northern Harrier, Fly, Mole, Bat|
|Visser Three||--||Unnamed Winged Porcupine-like creature|
The Underground was adapted as part of the Animorphs TV series, which aired on Nickelodeon and YTV between the fall of 1998 and the spring of 2000. The seventeenth book in the series was covered by the seventh episode, "The Escape", which is the name of the fifteenth book in the series (the TV episode bears no resemblance to its namesake book). The TV episodes did not follow the books faithfully, altering many aspects of the characters' roles within the Animorphs, the events in the war against the Yeerks, and added plot lines that were not present in the books.
- In the episode, Marco argued for the use of morphing for frivolous purposes, while Rachel argued against. In the book series, Rachel used her morphing power the most casually, and the most often - while Marco avoided morphing at all costs most of the time.
- In the book, the Animorphs learned about a entrance to the Yeerk pool located in the walk-in refridgerator at a McDonald's. To enter, a Controller would ask for a Happy Meal with extra Happy. They try sneaking in as flies but can't because of the Gleet Bio-Filter. In the episode, because of copyright laws, it was changed so that Jake, Marco, Rachel, and Cassie are at a burger joint called Tom's Burgers in their human forms, pretending to be Controllers and they ask for a cheeseburger, hold the cheese and are sent to a storage room, and they enter, activating the Bio-Filter and alerting the Controller who worked there, but they escape in their cockroach morphs.
- In the book, the Animorphs entered the Yeerk pool as moles and then bats. In the episode, they morphed into ferrets and Tobias somehow got in and out from underground even though he didn't regain his morphing power.
- The cover quote is, "There's nothing to fear, but the Yeerks themselves...."
- The inside cover quote is, "There's nothing to fear. Batigrl is here...."
- This is the fifth book in which the cover art does not depict a morph acquired in the book.
- This is the third book in which all the Animorphs acquire the same new morph.