Friday, November 11, 2005

GODZILLA COLOR SPECIAL Dark Horse Comics, 1992

With a purposeful grimace and a terrible sound
He pulls the spitting high tension wires down
Helpless people on a subway train
Scream bug-eyed as he looks in on them
He picks up a bus and he throws it back down
As he wades through the buildings toward the center of town
Oh no, they say he’s got to go
Go go Godzilla, yeah
Oh no, there goes Tokyo
Go go Godzilla, yeah

- Blue Oyster Cult, “Godzilla”

I loves me the Godzilla.
I adore giant monsters of any kind, really, but there is an ineffable quality about Godzilla that makes him King of the The Monsters as well as King of Dave’s Heart.

My love for Godzilla extends from the films to the innumerable toys, from the Marvel Comics series to the Godzilla Saturday morning cartoon, the Godzilla Power Hour. Do you remember that? With Godzookie, the cute little mini-Godzilla? I loved that little guy!

Plus, the cartoon had the best theme song of like, any cartoon. If you haven’t heard it, imagine men singing this in deep voices, with the music swelling at the end, horns blaring:

Up from the depths
Thirty stories high
Breathing fire
His head in the sky

And then, for a brief moment, the music softens and adopts almost a carnival quality and the men sing wistfully.

And Godzoookie...
Listen to the insanity HERE. (Thanks Kelvin.)

No! No, I know what you’re thinking - I’m not going to diss Godzookie! He may seem like a prefect and legitimate target for mockery, but not on this blog, baby. As far as I’m concerned, Godzookie is affiliated with Godzilla, and therefore has soaked up residual coolness from The King of The Monsters. Basically, anybody that rolls with Godzilla has to be cool, and therefore is off-limits. So take your Godzookie bashing and go elsewhere, you cynical hipsters!

Anyway, you can imagine my pleasure when in 1992 Dark Horse Comics released the Godzilla Color Special with 40 frickin’ pages of giant monster love courtesy of Art Adams and Randy Stradley.

I don’t believe I have extolled the virtues of Art Adams yet here a Dave’s Long Box, though I may be mistaken. I’m sure I could talk at length about Adam’s ultra-clean linework, his sure-handed composition, or his masterful inking, but I think the core of my argument can be distilled in one sentence: Art Adams’ kung fu is strong.

He’s one of those artists that I hold in such high regard that I would buy a book that he draws just because he’s drawing it. Seriously, I would buy The Golden Girls Spring Break Special if Art Adams was drawing it. An ongoing Teen Wolf comic? I’d buy it if Art Adams was drawing it. G. Gordon Liddy’s GlobalStrike – The Comic? Oh, hell yes – if Art Adams was drawing it.
So Godzilla + Art Adams? Where do I sign up?
Godzilla is a monster who likes his work, and his job is to DESTROY!!!

This is a pretty straight-forward Godzilla story. Japan’s elite Godzilla Response Team “G-Force” races ahead of the rampaging beast to warn the residents of an isolated island town that Trouble is on the way. The island is inhabited by Japanese luddites who live a feudal existence – sort of the Asian equivalent of the Amish – so they can’t just phone ahead.

While G-Force warns the villagers, Godzilla makes short work of an armada of battleships offshore in typical Godzilla fashion. Adams does a great job capturing the nihilistic bad-assitude that the best Godzilla films portray – Godzilla is a monster who likes his work, and his job is to DESTROY!!!

Here’s a good example: one of the brave villagers, Kogenta, appeals to the statue of the demon warrior Gekido-Jin, the island’s guardian, for help from Godzilla.

Godzilla steps on him.

And then Godzilla steps on him some more. Take a look.

That’s comedy.

Kogenta’s spirit manages to bring Gekido-Jin to life, and in short order Godzilla is slugging it out with a huge demon samurai dude for the fate of the island. I don’t think I’m ruining it for anybody when I tell you that Godzilla wins. Godzilla always wins

I wish I had the time and energy to scan every beautiful page of this comic, but instead let me implore you to seek out the Godzilla Color Special on your own and experience the best comic book rendition of Godzilla ever! You can practically smell the fanboy love on every page – this is a comic created by people who love Godzilla as much as you do.

Plus, they do a great job depicting Godzilla’s trademark scream/honk:

That is exactly how that noise should be spelled, and this is exactly how a Godzilla comic should go down.

Now if I can just get a Godzookie Color Special, I’ll die happy.


Anonymous said...

And here I thought I was the only one who really felt the Godzilla Color Special love.

Yup, this issue is a blast from start to finish. I share your fondness for all things Godzilla*, from the movies to the recent videogames. That Gamecube one was, as the kids say, the shit.

I'm really looking forward to Marvel's Essential Godzilla in February, which is probably the coolest thing Marvel's saw fit to reprint in a good long while.

*I am, however, equally fond of Gamera, who recently got beat down by the Justice League in Justice League Unlimited, in what is surely one of the coolest cameos ever.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to read Essential Godzilla because it has a story where Dum Dum Dugan boxes a shrunken down to human size Godzilla. I haven't read that, but it sounds like one of the greatest things in the history of ever.

I liked the Godzilla game for NES. You just walked around STOMPING EVERYTHING.

Tycho B. said...

Marvel's GODZILLA KING OF THE MONSTERS was the absolute high point of 70's comics.

'Nuff said.

thekelvingreen said...

...the Godzilla Power Hour. Do you remember that? With Godzookie, the cute little mini-Godzilla? I loved that little guy!
You can catch him in the new Godzilla and Godzookie live-action series, Surface, now showing on NBC.

G. Gordon Liddy’s GlobalStrike - The Comic?
That actually came out last week, under the name Liberality for All. Really.

I've always wondered whether Godzookie was actually supposed to be the Son of Godzilla from the films.

All I remember from the cartoon is the theme tune, which as the masked mofo rightly asserts, seems to lodge itself in the mind like an informational virus, and that there was a character in it who was exactly like The Fonz. Enough so that as a wee 'un, I actually thought that the cartoon was some sort of Godzilla/Happy Days crossover.

thekelvingreen said...

Plus, the cartoon had the best theme song of like, any cartoon.

Don't say I never give you anything...

Brack said...

I've not read this, but I remember getting the issues of the Godzilla series that Alex Cox wrote.

The combination of the writer/director of one of my favourite movies, Repo Man and my favourite giant scenery destroying monster was too much to resist.

Unknown said...

As memory serves (poorly), that was at the tail end of a big upswing in Godzilla popularity. Art Adams had been a part of it from the late 80's on. Clearly a man who loved, loved the big guy.

Seems to me the 1998 American movie put a big kibosh on all that.


James Meeley said...

I just wonder why the never did a Godzilla vs. The Incredible Hulk comic. Both are green, have the power to leve a city, and are feared by pretty much the world. It just seems a natural that these two would clash at some point.

Yet they never have. Maybe we ought to start a petition to see this match-up of the "green-skinned goliaths" happen. Lord knows it couldn't suck any worse than half the stuff on the racks today.

Edward Liu said...

There must be an Arthur Adams week here at the Long Box. There must. I think he's going to be at Big Apple Con in 2 weeks and I'm all atwitter in anticipation.

Fans of monsters and/or Art Adams must own the "Art Adams Creature Features" TPB from Dark Horse Comics, which reprints this Godzilla story, Adams' "Creature from the Black Lagoon" adaptation, a few Monkeyman & O'Brien shorts (MM&O'B totally rule), and a few other random items. It's a pure, concentrated chunk of Art Adams comic book love.

James Meeley said...

Well, I did it. I put forth the call to arms to get a Hulk vs. Godzilla comic made at my blog. Now, it's up to us to pester Marvel and Dark Horse until they conceed to our wishes.

Art Adams, of course, would have to provided the cover to it, 'natch. :)

Bill Reed said...

The Godzilla/Godzooky cartoon is one of my favorites of all time. I watched that religiously, back in the day.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed Dark Horse's Gamera comic, too. I think Gamera could kick Godzilla's Greeonk.

Anonymous said...

Is it just me, or is Surface really seaQuest Begins?

DougBot said...

The minute you started posting the lyrics to the cartoon theme song, I flashed back to the sound of the little sonic Godzilla signal the humans on that show used to summon the big green one.

Gamera's recent films have totally rocked, but nothing can ever top the Ikira Ifukube scores for Godzilla.

Michael said...

Speaking of Godzilla, I found this page today: it tracks Godzilla's journey across the US in his Marvel series.

thekelvingreen said...

I just wonder why the never did a Godzilla vs. The Incredible Hulk comic. Both are green, have the power to leve a city, and are feared by pretty much the world. It just seems a natural that these two would clash at some point.
Well, during the Marvel Mangaverse event, the Hulk actually was Godzilla, more or less.

Marionette said...

You are a sick and twisted individual and should immediately seek professional help.

No sane being could like Godzookie.

Gordon D said...

First, to marionette - Godzookie did make an appearance in one of the Toho films, so he counts. That's one up for Dave.

But anyway, gotta love Godzilla - now, anyone here into Gamera? (Not as cool as Godzilla, but hey, he's worth it)

Anonymous said...

"I can't wait to read Essential Godzilla because it has a story where Dum Dum Dugan boxes a shrunken down to human size Godzilla. I haven't read that, but it sounds like one of the greatest things in the history of ever."

If that's the story I'm thinking of, that was one of the very first comics I ever read. IIRC, there's also a bit in which a young boy befriends shrunken Godzilla, dresses him up in a trenchcoat and fedora, and then Godzilla starts keepin' it real in the ghetto.

Maybe I got it wrong and it was my imagination but I don't think so because I don't think I'm weird enough to make up something like that :)

Scipio said...

"Godzilla steps on him" is NOT comedy.

Godzilla steps on him repeatedly with a subtle thoom/thoom/thoom sound effect?

THAT'S comedy!

Anonymous said...

No, no, and again I say, no. The Son of Godzilla from the films was "Minya." Godzookie, devil take his soul, was the creation of television execs who wanted a cute 'n' cuddly pal for the cartoon series. Confuse them not!

Anonymous said...

Godzilla always wins


David C said...

The coming existence of "The Essential Marvel Godzilla" is one of those things that proves we live in a blessed time.

BTW, I think "Now that Godzilla is safely shrunken, we should transport him to Manhattan" might be one of the top ten Bad Ideas ever expressed in comics, only slightly mitigated by the fact that about 90% of the Marvel Universe's superheroes live there. (Hmm, that'd be a fun list to compile.)

Anonymous said...

I want to see that Top Ten List of Bad Ideas in the Marvel Universe.

My suggestions:

* - driving your jalopy out onto an Army testing grounds just to impress your friends

* - throwing your clone into a smoke stack, and then walking (swinging) away. Especially if your Spider-Sense is tingling. Don't be lazy - take a minute to check it out

* - messing with radiation in the vicinity of others. For God's sake! Somebody always gets hurt, gets bitten by something, and the shielding almost never holds up (that's even if you remember to include it - yeah, I'm looking at you, Richards!)

* - Never take in a roommate with an unpleasant-sounding last name (That's twice on the list, Richards). You'll never have a senses-shattering clashing of titans with a guy named Moynihan - he just doesn't have the geneology to be evil.

* - Dimensional gateways shouldn't be opened. Ever. Period.

* - In the Marvel Universe, a career in science is just not worth the hassle. You're better off driving a bus.

That's mine. I'd love to see your ideas.

Anonymous said...

"No, no, and again I say, no. The Son of Godzilla from the films was "Minya." Godzookie, devil take his soul, was the creation of television execs who wanted a cute 'n' cuddly pal for the cartoon series. Confuse them not!"

True but Minya also spoke in one of the Godzilla movies (Revenge of Godzilla ? The one where he hung out with the little boy) in a somewhat retard fashion. Kind of a precursor to Barney.

My girlfriend grew up watching these movies and has got a HUGE place in her heart for Godzookie (We still call him that. That will always be his nick name for us) and I’ve hooked her up with almost every single Godzilla movie I can find. The new 2005 one just came out on DVD, you can get it on Ebay for around $10 - $15. Godzilla : Final Wars …and it has a supporting cast of : Godzookie !

I shit you not. Dude just came out of a 20 some year retirement to make a new movie.

It also has rubber suit Godzilla vs stupid CGI Hollywood gecko Godzilla. For reals. Best. Fight. Ever.

Godzilla : Final Wars. Check it out for Godzookie sake

Vaklam said...

Godzilla is a monster who likes his work, and his job is to DESTROY!!!

I'm about to start a new job. The above quote is now my official motto. Er, just replace "Godzilla" with "Brian".

James, I'm right there with you on the Hulk vs. Godzilla thing. His fight/team-up with Devil Dinosaur was awesome but this would be even more awesomer. It might even be, dare I say it, AWESOMEST!

I'll help spread the word on my blog.

Even though Godzookie did water down some of the Big G's coolness, he's no Scrappy Doo. Zookie even did some cool stuff every now and then so he's all right with me.

Bill D. said...

It's too bad that Art Adams didn't do much more than the occasional cover for the reagular Dark Horse Godzilla series... it might have been good then (or at least looked a damn sight better, anyway).

And can you imagine if he had worked on the Marvel series back in the day? Oh man, what I wouldn't give to see an Art Adams version of the issue where Godzilla stomps on the Champions!

Anonymous said...

I watched Godzilla v. Mothra a few nights ago and DAMN! it was fun! And, indeed, Godzilla was defeated by two baby Mothras (larval critters who had just come out of a gigantic Easter egg that had washed up on the beach) who covered Godzilla with webbing or silk or something and dumped Big G into the sea.

Seriously, Big G could have vaporized the little upstarts. BUT Big G knows that children are the future, even for giant monsters, so Big G put up a token resistance and sucked it in. Godzilla had no stomach for bragging rights that he had fried two baby monsters that had just hatched two or three minutes before he met them.

Godzilla v. Mothra is also noted for the Shobjin, the two four-inch tall girls who implore the human world to return the Mothra egg. "Give us back our egg!" And I love the singing they do to wake up Mothra.

And Godzilla's Revenge is one of the classics of world cinema. Kurosawa can eat his heart out! I mean The Seven Samurai is good, but it's not Godzilla's Revenge.

RobB said...

Nice one Dave! Dark Horse had the ongoing series shortly after this Art Adams special. I had that, G-FAN (the official Godzialla Fan Magazine) on my pull lists.

Shit, I still have the Godzilla from The Shogun Warriors toy line that shoots his fist.

RobB said...

However, both are better than the American "Godzilla" from 1998.

If I'm not mistaken the Japanese film released here in the States as Godzilla 2000 did some kind of play off on the Lizard-zilla.

Edward Liu said...

It has just come to my attention (via Augie De Bleick's Pipeline column) that the latest Modern Masters book from TwoMorrows is going to focus on Art Adams.

The TwoMorrows Modern Masters books' kung fu is so strong they will knock you on your ass if you get too close to one while it's sitting on the bookshelf. I own the Bruce Timm volume, and really mean to get the others in the series (George Perez, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, and Alan Davis, if memory serves).

Anonymous said...

Firstly, I must congratulate you on an excellent blog entry :) I have a soft spot for Godzookie too.

Have you encountered the "Godzilla vs Barkley" comic?
It looks entertaining, in a bizarre way.

Anonymous said...

2004's "Godzilla: Final Wars" did not see Godzilla come out of a 20 year retirement.
There were 13 films in the 20 years up to 2004. (Not counting GINO, of course).
Starting with the 1954 heavy, dark film "Gojira" (hacked up into the de-nuked, Raymond Burr inserted "Godzilla King of the Monsters"):
1954-1975 saw 15 G-Films.
1984-1995 had 7 G-Films
1999-2004 had 6 G-Films.

Most are on DVD from Sony in the US now. Some are better releases than others.
The rest/others will be out via another company (Classic Media)this summer/autumn 2006 (unedited, clear prints, both languages & english subtitles, not the dread "Dubtitles" which re-write the dialogue).

(Right now the most respectful, extras-full Japanese monsters movie DVD releases from Tokyo Shock/Media Blasters. "Varan the Unbelievable", "Matango" "Agtragon"etc. Hopefully
Sony & Classic Media will follow suit releasing these films restored to their full glory, without the dumbed-down/thinned out/edited for USA plots.

Alex Cox was into having Godzilla appearing in previous-to-WW2 eras, which makes little sense. (Some Dark Horse poster art had Godzilla appearing in Samurai era Japan. Which is insane: the USA hadn't developed nukes by then.)

Godzilla= Hiroshima/Atomic Weapons/Testing or Nukes. So 'G' shouldn't appear before WWII; and will be around for as long as Nuclear Weapons are part of the world's culture.

If "the Big G" represents any one country, it has to be USA (ask Hiroshima,erm...the newer Hiroshima). Alex Cox also couldn't 'get past' that G can't relate to humans, they way King Kong might. But Godzilla shouldn't: no more than a nuclear blast or 'atomic mushroom cloud' could relate to people. (In the first 1954 film, people who are even near G's stepping feet fall over dead, from the radiation).

Godzilla can't be affected by normal tanks and fighters, any more than a nuclear weapon can. It's heavy footfalls represent the slow, inevitable, march towards WWIII.
It's a nuclear explosion in slow motion...unstoppable and coming
this way...
Inevitable, unstoppable, Nuclear Death.

Myth-Buster: Despite the rumours: Both Japanese & USA Edits of "King Kong Vs Godzilla" have the -same- ending (tho the Japanese version is more complete & intelligent, not so "dumbed down" for Western comsumption). Although some westerners mistook Kong as the 'US monster' and Godzilla as 'Japan's monster'; truth is it's the other way round. Godzilla (again) represents the USA Nuclear Arms, while King Kong represents Japan using the resources of the Pacific Islands in World War II.(Kong is found on a Pacific Island).

What's in a name?
Go + Jira = Godzilla.
'Kujira' is Japanese for Whale.
Go comes from Gorilla.
(Godzilla a savage beast from the ocean, geddit?)
Go (from 'Go'rilla) + Jira (from Kujira) = Go+Jira or "GOJIRA".
J can be as "Dzi"...
While "R" can be "L"
Gojira = Go-Dzi-Ra = Go-Dzi-La
Go-Dzi-LLa; Go-Dzilla/Go-dzilla
(almost rhymes with go-rilla)
But it starts with 'Go' not 'God'.
Go-dzilla (not 'God-zilla').

Minya (or Minilla="Mini-Ra")
["Ra" denotes big, Moth+Ra = Mothra. MothRa, GojiRa, MiniRa or Minilla]
is the Big G's offspring (hated by fans) in the 60's and again in 2004's "Godzilla: Final Wars".
(The artsy director wanted that film to be more like the late 60s/early 70's 'heroic' G films, despite all the progress made in the cooler, nastier films of 1980s/1991-2003).

Final Wars, with it's multiple world -wide monster battles, vaguely resembles the 2000s and could be seen as a reflection on the "War on Terror".

A non-Minya offspring appeared in the 1990s films.
1993: "Godzilla Vs MechaGodzilla"(aka "G vs MG II"): had a pretty cool, 6 foot "Baby Godzilla"
...who grew up to be the horribly Minya-like "Little Godzilla" in 1994's "Godzilla Vs SpaceGodzilla"; ...but fortunatley grew into a sleek, feisty younger G called "Godzilla Junior" in "Godzilla Vs Destroyer", a film in which G saves it's life (sort of, it's complicated).
G & offspring are usually referred to as "it" rather than "he"...they're as more about Nukes than about reptiles...seen as a sort of 'force of nature'; Godzilla is sort of a 'physical spectre of Nuclear War'. The 1954 film "Gojira" (out in USA soon in 2006 on DVD) and the 1991-1995 movies best 'explain' this.

1995s "Godzilla Vs Destroyah" see a beast connected to the "Oxygen Destroyah" scientist's device that destroyed the first Gojira/Godzilla in 1954 (same actress plays the scientist's daughter in both the 1954 and 1995 films!) While the 1954 film dwells on weapons escalation; "G vs Destroyah" sees Godzilla in a steaming-up-the-harbour, partly glowing-orange "near meltdown" state...and when he/it reaches a certain's China-Syndrome/Chernobyl time for the Pacific Basin; and Nuclear Winter for the whole world.

Producer Taneka said, "Godzilla does not have an emotion; Godzilla is an emotion!"

'Dark Horse' stuff has it's moments, takes it's cues from 1989's "Godzilla Vs Biollante"; however keeps depicting The Big G as green, when in fact Godzilla is 'ash Grey' (about the same color as the ash sillouttes of bodies left on the sidewalks of Hiroshima & Nagasaki) sometimes appearing almost black.

Godzilla appears as
50meteres 1954-1975...
80meteres 1984-1989..
100metres 1954-1995
55metre 1999-2003
but 60metres in 2002
and again 100 metres in 2004 "Final Wars" .

Godzilla being a nuclear monster, blasts an "atomic ray", but doesn't breathe fire.

Hanna-Barbara did do a 70s cartoon about a giant green fire-breathing lizard, remote controlled by a family in a boat. [This cartoon had an obese pet dragon with armpit wings.] It's doubtful that Hanna-Barbara had the orbs to depict a monster that is a metaphor for US Nuclear Arms / Pacific Nuclear Testing / The Arms Race; or Nuclear Armageddon personified as a towering monster walking through a devastated city.

But then again...if Hanna Barbara reads the latest newspapers...they might find the inspiration.

Anonymous said...

I said in the last post...
that Godzilla appears as
"100 metres 1954-1995"
but should read as..
100 metres 1991-1995

so it should have read:

Godzilla appears as
50 metres 1954-1975...
80 meters 1984-1989..
100 metres 1991-1995
55 metres 1999-2003 but
60 metres in 2002 and again
100 metres in 2004 "Final Wars".

Godzilla movies open in Japan in December, so "Godzilla 2000" came out in December 1999. But that Godzilla usually gets called Godzilla 2000. While G-2001 gets called Godzilla 2002 etc...but, if you want to split hairs, then:

"Godzilla 2000 Millenium" (1999)
"Godzilla x Megaguiras " (2000)
"Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah: All Out Monster Attack" (2001)
"Godzilla x MechaGodzilla" (2002)
"Godzilla: Tokyo SOS" (2003)
"Godzilla: Final Wars" (2004)

if so then:

Godzilla appears as
50 metres 1954-1975
80 metres 1984-1989
100 metres 1991-1995
55 metres 1999-2000 (G2000 & GxM)
60 metres in 2001 (GMK:AOMA)
55 metres 2002-2003 (GxMG & G:TSOS)
100 metres in 2004 (G:Final Wars).

The size change is easily explained because some of these "Millenium" era movies are 'stand alone' films, not sequels.

These three 'millenium' era movies are three in a trilogy / three chapters in one story:
"Godzilla x Megaguiras " (2000)
"Godzilla x MechaGodzilla" (2002)
"Godzilla: Tokyo SOS" (2003)

While these three are all 'stand alone' one-off movies. In each the design/shape/size of Godzilla differs.
"Godzilla 2000 Millenium" (1999)
"Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah: All Out Monster Attack" (2001)
"Godzilla: Final Wars" (2004)

PS: The monster appearing in the Justice League Unlimtied episode was not actually Gamera (who is owned by Daiei Studios). So it wasn't actually a cameo, but is obviously a homage and tip of the hat to Gamera.

Gamera starred in a trilogy of 3 newer movies in the 1990s, which are considered (by most) to be the best giant monster movies ever . A newer, younger Gamera stars in a 2006 film entitled "Gamera: Little Braves" or "Gamera: Small Heroes".

Anonymous said...

You can rock the Godzilla with the mighty Blue Oyster Cult here. GREEONK, indeed.

Craig D. said...

Lots of faulty information from Mr. Anonymous. Let's go down the list:

"usually gets called Godzilla 2000"

Well, probably because that's the title. It has nothing to do with when it was released.

"G-2001 gets called Godzilla 2002."

This movie never gets called either one of those. The title is Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, not All Out Monster Attack, and it's usually abbreviated GMK, never G-2001, Godzilla 2002, GMKGMAAO, GMKAOMA, or anything else.

As for your other abbreviations, some of them I've never seen any Godzilla fan use. Godzilla x Megaguirus (not "Megaguiras") is never called GxM due to the confusion this would cause with movies like Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla, Godzilla vs. Mothra, and Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla, which can (and sometimes are, causing said confusion) referred to as GxM or GvsM. Also, Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. is usually referred to as GXMM (taken from the Japanese title, Godzilla x Mothra x Mechagodzilla), not GTSOS.

There were 11 Godzilla films between 1984 and 2004, not 13.

Godzilla x Megaguirus is not related to Godzilla x Mechagodzilla or Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. in any way. In the timeline of the last two movies, Megaguirus never happened.

Godzilla does not represent one country; he represents (to quote the Blue Oyster Cult song) the folly of man and nature's reaction to it. The only people who think Godzilla represents America specifically instead of all of mankind are people who haven't actually seen a Godzilla movie. These are the same misguided folks who sometimes accuse Godzilla movies of being anti-American. They're not. They're anti-mankind-doing-stupid-shit.

If you can give me an example of how Final Wars could even remotely be seen as a reflection of the War on Terror, I'm all ears. I suppose aliens using monsters to attack the countries of Earth could be considered terrorism, but this idea has been around since the Godzilla movies from the 1960s and there's really nothing in Final Wars that explicitly or even subtly invokes the War on Terror. The aliens destroy the entire Earth and the humans defeat them with one little ship and about ten people. This invokes the American response to 9/11 how? Not every movie with explosions in it made after 2001 is a metaphor for the War on Terror.

Nobody in the original 1954 Godzilla died just by being near him. They were stomped or fried by his atomic breath.

"Gamera starred in a trilogy of 3 newer movies in the 1990s, which are considered (by most) to be the best giant monster movies ever."

By most? Best ever? Not in my experience. Most fans think they're pretty good, a couple of them are even regarded as great, but I've never encountered anyone who thought any of them were the best ever.

Craig D. said...

If I'm not mistaken the Japanese film released here in the States as Godzilla 2000 did some kind of play off on the Lizard-zilla.

Yes. And contrary to what Mike P said, it wasn't Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla, although Godzilla: Final Wars did have a scene with the Japanese Godzilla destroying the American one. Here are some of the ways, off the top of my head, of how Godzilla 2000 parodies the American Godzilla movie:

1. In the American movie (which I'll call G98 from now on), the characters are in a car and trapped in a tunnel and staring down Godzilla. They escape Godzilla by flashing their car's headlights in his face and driving away while he's stunned. There's an almost identical scene in Godzilla 2000 (G2K), but when lights are shined in Godzilla's face, it pisses him off and he destroys the tunnel trying to kill the people in the car. It's as if the creators are saying, "This is what the real Godzilla would do.

2. An army general in G2K says that Godzilla advances and never retreats when he's attacked, most likely a reference to the American Godzilla running away like a frightened rodent in G98.

3. The villain monster in G2K, Orga, visually resembles the American Godzilla, at least in the face. Orga tries to copy Godzilla but can't do it. Not too hard to see the symbolism there.