Godzilla: Complete Rulers of Earth Volume 1 Review

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The library finally pulled through and ordered a bunch of copies of this comic. I got to read Godzilla in Hell a while back, but have otherwise been lacking in Godzilla comic knowledge. Well, that is the case no longer as I have heard it from a very reputable source that this is the best Godzilla comic series to date. I can certainly believe that as this is a considerable improvement to the last trade. G in Hell was pretty fun, but this feels more like a big Godzilla adventure and the plot makes the whole thing all the more engaging. Who doesn’t like a war between multiple groups of aliens?

The humans don’t realize this, but there are two different alien factions who want control of the Earth. There are the space invaders and the ones who come from the ground. One is aquatic and the other is more like your typical Xenomorph, except more humanoid and capable of humans speech and shape shifting. Both of them have an army of Kaiju at their disposal, with the aquatic group having titans like Ebirah and the other water Kaiju while the other group has all of the heavy hitters. Earth is a very easy target for them except for one key obstacle..Godzilla!

This series takes place after a few of the other titles I believe so the Earth is finally starting to get used to fighting these giant monsters. Godzilla is still too much for them to handle, but they finally have the equipment needed to take on the small fry like Ebirah. I don’t want to put the lobster on the spot here, but he definitely didn’t look all that strong throughout the comic. He was treated as a D lister and I suppose he is for now. It’s unknown exactly what Godzilla’s plan is, but the king definitely has something up his sleeve. He continues to challenge all of the Kaiju who show up and doesn’t back down even when he’s outnumbered. To an extent you do feel bad for Godzilla though.

He’s tough and can hold his own, but being constantly outnumbered and not having a lot of backup can be pretty annoying. Some members of the government like Steven Woods realize that attacking Godzilla is not in their best interests at the moment, but others just decide to blast all of the monsters indiscriminately. Not their wisest move I’d say. The only allies Godzilla can count on are Jet Jaguar and Mothra. Together, those three can take on just about any opponent.

Godzilla fans will be pleased at how good he looks here. He takes a lot of injuries during the adventure, but keeps on going. He is well known for his stamina and this comic definitely had that in mind. Seeing him use his nuclear blast or barrier of sorts was also good to take on the numerous mini Destoroyahs that were on him. As this comic is basically a big battle with all of the Kaiju throughout the Godzilla universe, there were a lot of opponents for him. One that naturally stood out was the return of Zilla. His fight with Godzilla in Final Wars is still legendary to this day and a rematch is something that his fans have always wanted. I can’t say that he did much better this time around, but at least he lasted longer than 7-13 seconds or whatever the official time for the film was.

Other fan favorites like Space Godzilla, Rodan, and Destoroyah show up to deal in the damage. They all look very good and while it can be a little sad to see them all being manipulated and controlled by the Aliens, it’s just how they were introduced in this series. I didn’t read any of the original titles so I have to assume as a reader here that the villains either created the monsters or trapped them with some kind of high tech hypnosis. I’d assume that it wouldn’t last for very long though and Gigan’s urge to fight could not be suppressed in the end. A fight will always bring out the tough nature of the Kaiju.

A surprise highlight was Jet Jaguar. I’ve always been a fan of this guy, but he was even more awesome than I remembered. He basically just shows up and takes names. Jet Jaguar proves that he can hold his own with Godzilla’s strongest foes and even with the king himself. His size changing abilities are incredibly handy along with his flight and laser blasts. While he may not be able to speak yet, you can easily tell that he is one of the good guys. Jet Jaguar has apparently been hunting the aliens for quite a while now and it is the first time that you ever see the villains look nervous. Besides Godzilla, Jet Jaguar is the biggest threat on the planet now and he actually was winning his brief bout with Godzilla. The villains can’t afford to ignore this new player, but it might not matter. Jet Jaguar already has their number.

Besides all of the Kaiju showing up and duking it out, the comic had time for two main human characters. Lucy is a reporter who likes to go to dangerous areas for a good scoop. She’s been around for quite a while and isn’t afraid of the Kaiju that get in her way. She seems like a reasonably tough character and is smart enough to realize the difference between Godzilla and his opponents. She encourages the army to make smart moves even if they don’t always listen. I’d say that she’s doing pretty well so far. The other character is Steven Woods. He’s a tough army member and he saves Lucy during one of the early scenes. This guy seems like a capable soldier and someone who gets the job done, but it’s a very tricky situation for him at the moment. For starters, he is now dealing with shape shifting aliens who don’t exactly play by the rules. You can be the strongest hand to hand fighter there is, but it won’t help if you don’t know who to aim your fists at. If he figures out what is happening, I’ll give him some major credibility points. I don’t blame him for not realizing the threat yet, but it is sad to see the humans just being messed around with the whole time.

As I mentioned earlier, the plot is really engaging. I always did like the sort of Secret Invasion plots that come up with shape-shifters. On one hand, it can be annoying to see them get away with everything since nobody even has a reason to suspect foul play, but it also makes everything intriguing as well. What will the aliens do with these abilities and how can they be stopped? It’s clear that the humans are losing and quite badly at the moment, but they do have Kiryu and the other mechs that they’ve acquired over the years. I like to think that Jet Jaguar would have a way of detecting them as well so that could be pivotal in helping the main characters by the end.

I also liked the fact that this took place at a time where humans already knew about Kaiju. This meant that we could skip the panic phase and go right into the plans and discussions about how to handle this. It’s not exactly just another day in the park for the heroes, but it isn’t anything too drastic either. They handle the situation quickly and efficiently.

Another thing that really makes the comic stand out is how good the artwork is. Some issues in particular looked incredibly sharp like Jet Jaguar and Godzilla vs Gigan or Mecha Godzilla vs Destoroyah. The whole series has been at a high level though and it’s certainly better than I would have even expected. The artwork can hold its own against any other comic no questions asked. Every character is portrayed perfectly and every attack comes across very smoothly. If there is any chink in the art’s armor, it’s that the humans can look a little off at times. Luckily, we’re reading for the Kaiju, aliens, and fights here. If the humans were specifically drawn with less effort so the rest of the comic could look amazing, then there will definitely be no complaints from me.

Overall, This is definitely the definitive Godzilla comic and it’s hard to picture another series overcoming this one. The cover definitely seems like click bait though since you would assume that a Complete Collection would bring all of the issues right? Apparently, it is volume one of the complete version so I have to wait for the library to get volume 2 to end the saga. It just came out today so hopefully the library notices and orders the copy as soon as possible. I’m definitely expecting a pretty intense ending. The series has already used almost all of Godzilla’s iconic monsters though so I’m wondering how they’re going to end the series. We haven’t really seen King Ghidorah yet so I’m expecting him to play a big role. As long as Jet Jaguar is also there, then I’m set. If you haven’t read this comic yet, I highly recommend changing that. If you think that it’s just going to be a comic where monsters fight each other, (Still sounds good to me) think again. The plot is sound and with a 3 way war going on along with Godzilla just fending off all attackers, there is a lot to think about as you read through it. It’s a very complete story and one that likely will not be rushed given how many issues there are.

Overall 8/10

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