Kong: Skull Island Review

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It’s time to take a look at the new King Kong film. I’m not a King Kong fan nor will I ever be at this rate, but this film got a lot of hype since it’s in the same continuity as Godzilla. Maybe the latter’s quality would rub off on King Kong and elevate the series to new heights. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. It’s still the same old King Kong with a fresh layer of paint. It makes the same mistakes although at least it doesn’t force any random romance plots into the film. Still, you can’t help but wish that the film had chosen a very different path.

The film is about two scientists convincing the government that they should head to Kaiju island to see what’s there. They are escorted by Preston and his team of commandos along with James, a skilled mercenary. They decide to bomb the island to scare everyone into submission, but this wakes up the mighty King Kong. The majority of the “heroes” are destroyed in the initial confrontation and the survivors have to find a way off the island. That’ll be tough since there are many monsters aside from King Kong. Preston also wants revenge on the big gorilla and he has some guns at the ready. Can he win this round?

One thing about King Kong is that a lot of people don’t find him to be all that scary. Why would they when falling off of a building is enough to destroy him? This version is a little bigger than most of the old film versions so that helps his case a little, but he is still injured by bullets here. A well placed fire blast does a lot of damage as well so I’m going to feel bad for him if he ever has to fight Godzilla. If ordinary fire can do that, imagine what ATOMIC breath will do to him. The poor guy would be incinerated in an instant. The only sad part is that King Kong is the heavy under dog in the fight so I wouldn’t be surprised if he wins as a result. Anyone remember Batman V Superman? The Godzilla angle is the main reason why you guys are watching this film so you should start to consider this angle. I am hyped for the big crossover even if it isn’t happening for quite a while. It’ll certainly be worth the wait. There is an after credits scene in this film so stick around.

Now, why am I disliking this film so much? There are a few reasons, but lets start with the obvious one. The animal violence is a problem here. We get a whole scene where we see Preston blow up a bird’s head. He’s the villain here so it’s to show us how mean he is, but it’s not helping the film’s case at all. There is a very thin line between monsters and animals and this film opted to have them be closer to animals than monsters. Bad move because the violence is a lot worse this way. It’s also sad when you consider that the humans are picking this fight. The monsters were just fine on their own until their island started to get blown up. They were simply defending themselves even if the film tries to get you to root for the humans. Not me, I was on the creatures side from day 1. It doesn’t help that all of the humans are just annoying the whole time. They weren’t all bad though, just not likable enough to be excused.

Preston was certainly not likable at all. The film gave him a ton of hype though so that was amusing. He is so out classed here so I couldn’t take that angle seriously. James is another hype character, but he never gets to do all that much. He has his big scene at the beginning, but he seems to panic just as much as the others and didn’t seem as tough and gritty as you’d expect. His “confrontation” with Mason on the bottom of the ship wasn’t as hype as the film thought it would be. They both talk tough and call each other’s bluff, but neither one actually gets anywhere. They were essentially fueling each other’s ego. James essentially never got any real character and the scene where he grabs a sword was just incredibly random. It also wasn’t a good scene since he was slashing a bunch of bats. Mason wasn’t a bad character either, but she really had no character either. At least she tried to help one of the monsters which was nice. She beats her counterpart from the earlier films. The rest of the cast were basically comic relief and didn’t do anything. A common trend here is that most of the characters weren’t bad, they just weren’t that interesting or likable either.

King Kong’s fight against the Skullcrawler was pretty good. The mini ones were pretty outmatched so they went down quickly, but I’ll definitely take that over the usual T Rex fight. These guys certainly had a better design after all and then the big one made for a nice villain as well. I was actually expecting a plot twist about these guys being the original Godzillas and the final one would return after the credits in his new Godzilla form. Maybe it’s for the best that it didn’t happen, but that would have been interesting. The King Kong vs human scenes are what you’d expect as they just get stomped the whole time. Preston puts up a fight of course, but once the gimmicks are gone, he doesn’t last all that long.

The film had some nice cuts like the spider claw stabbing a poor guy and King Kong rising up above the Sun. Those were probably the highlight as far as the visuals are concerned. I would still take Godzilla 2014 over this though with the awesome energy blasts and the fight against Muto was a lot more fun. What King Kong needs is his own energy blast or an opponent who has one. Of course, then King Kong would probably lose if it’s the latter so maybe he can get his own special attack in the sequel. This film probably took its special effects a little to seriously in some scenes as you’d see the characters load their guns rapid style. A Scooby Doo film used the same trick a while back and I actually don’t care for it. The sounds are distracting if anything and the visuals weren’t cool to look at. Maybe do it for something with a little more pop like a cool lightning blast or something. King Kong doesn’t have much options for that though so the technique is just wasted here.

None of the themes really stood out to me. It’s your standard action film stuff, but without the one stand out theme that is usually around. The end credits really pressed the point as they were eerily silent the whole time. The tune they picked for it really did not work. I’ll give the film some props for having the characters on the island the whole time. The film did start rather quickly and the action never stopped once they were on board. This was a double edged sword with all of the animal violence of course, but in theory it was a good move. I doubt the film would have been much better without the island anyway, maybe it could have scored a 6, but it would have been rather uneventful. You’d be taking the Skull Island out of Kong: Skull Island. New York City is a far superior backdrop, but I guess we can’t have every film take place there. Hopefully the crossover does though as that will really help with the visuals and intensity of the film.

The writing for this film wasn’t terrible. There isn’t constant panic with expletives this time around although they do artificially force the worst word in once just to get the crowd going. With the review just about done, lets briefly talk about what could be cool to see in a sequel. To make the sequel better, we need to have King Kong come to NYC. That’s step 1. Next would be to give King Kong a cool robot suit or a transformation where he grows wings and does battle with a true Kaiju. Next, ensure that the main humans are all red shirts so they can all die in the crossfire without any humans getting too much hype. We don’t want another fire damages King Kong scene after all. Throw in a cool techno theme and we’ll have the makings of a great movie.

Overall, Kong: Skull Island didn’t do it for me, but the odds of me liking the film were never great. You can’t take place on a retro island like this one that’s filled with animals and expect to be good. The odds of animal violence are simply too high and King Kong doesn’t have a great track record either. Also, it’s not like the film was subtle with the animal violence…a bird’s head was blown up…I’m not getting over that one. I don’t care much for apes and monkeys either so it would be very hard for me to really like Kong as a character. He did a good job of protecting his turf of course so I can respect that, but he’s still not all that “cool.” I’m excited for seeing where the cinematic universe goes from here though. We should be getting a lot of hype battles in the near future. Still, you don’t need to see this film to understand that though so I’d recommend checking out Pacific Rim or Godzilla (2014) instead. Both of those films do a better job of tackling the giant monster concept and have far better scenery and backdrops to grab your attention when the monsters aren’t around.

Overall 4/10

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Tuxedo Mask vs Godzilla


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Godzilla - Mar 2014
Suggested by Destroyer Tuxedo Mask has returned, but things are not looking good for him here. Godzilla isn’t called the King of the Monsters for nothing and a single hit is all he would need to take down Tuxedo Mask for good. He won’t even notice Tuxedo Mask’s signature rose as it is trampled beneath him. Lets face it, a mere mortal can’t defeat this Kaiju. Godzilla wins.

Spectre vs Godzilla




Suggested by DarkLK I like Godzilla as much as the next guy. He is incredibly powerful and a single blast of his atomic breath melts most of his opponents down to size. That being said, he is dealing with a cosmic being who can actually fight. Specter has stood up to blows from Superman in the past and he has some energy blasts to boot. His flight and speed will also come in handy here. I don’t see how Godzilla will be able to overcome these abilities. Spectre wins.

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

Godzilla Resurgence Review

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Godzilla is a series that I had always wanted to check out, but it took me quite a while to do so. Finally, about 2-3 years ago I went back and checked out every movie in chronological order. To this date, it is probably one of my biggest achievements. This film would be my first Japanese Godzilla film in theaters so I was ready for a blast and a half. It’s definitely a very solid film and Godzilla certainly does appear more than he did in the American film, at least it felt that way to me. While it definitely loses to a lot of the classic Godzilla films as I enjoy the Mega Monster brawls, this will certainly be remembered as a classic.

The plot is fairly standard for a G film. Godzilla has arisen and now the Government must try to find a way to suppress him before the whole planet is put at risk. Japan will have to do this while also keeping the foreign governments happy. America is willing to use their nuclear options and wipe Tokyo off the map if necessary. The old guard is at the end of their ropes so it is time for the next generation-led by Yaguchi, to save the day. The real question is..can they defeat the King of the Monsters?

Controversially, this film was confirmed to not have any antagonist for Godzilla from early on. That was a shame in my opinion because the monster fights are the main reason why I love the Godzilla films so much. There are many films that only have a single monster like the Beast from 20,000 Fathoms or King Kong, but the battles are what separates Godzilla from the pack. Not to mention that in my very controversial opinion, the films where Godzilla has no antagonist are typically the weaker ones. One day I want to come up with my personal list of where I would rank each Godzilla film. It’ll be difficult though since there are so many and you can make a great case for most of them. Sometimes I can barely put Final Wars as my favorite because GMK and the classic Ghidorah The Three Headed Monster are so good.

Lets launch into the positives. I was expecting this Godzilla film to be really serious and over the top dark based on the title. “Shin” usually means that something is going to be dark and dreary. The film is serious, but Resurgence has a lot of light hearted moments. I got to see this in a fairly packed theater with an energetic crowd and people were laughing constantly. The film feels just as comedic as the original Showa films at some point. It may not always be intentional, but I think it definitely was for at least 80-90% of the scenes. It’s good to be able to mix these tone shifts and the film does it quite well.

The humans never come across as annoying. Yaguchi is a good lead. He may panic from time to time, but he also comes up with a lot of good ideas and never gives up. The American representative Kayoko is also pretty likable. I always like having an American character step into the fray and she feels American right from the start. She is very direct and quippy as opposed to the other serious characters. I also appreciated the film’s restraint with not pushing for a very unrealistic and sudden romance and keeping things professional instead. Friendship isn’t dead quite yet and people can get along without having to take the next step. The Prime Minister was also fun as he was clearly out of his depths, but tried to keep on a tough face. Watching him and the group switch from room to room was definitely entertaining.

The film showed how having a lot of bureaucracy can be a very bad thing. It’s hard to act on a situation when you have to jump through so many hoops. The film portrays America in a very good light as a result as the country does whatever it wants whenever it wants too. America promotes young people who have fresh ideas and it has led to them becoming a global power. America was also portrayed with the might that is appropriate for them as their missiles are the first thing to actually injure Godzilla. They dealt quite a lot of damage and while I don’t think a nuclear missile would have finished Godzilla off, they are one of the only placed to have such an arsenal up their sleeve. I was definitely very satisfied.

Naturally, seeing Godzilla was also a blast. Shooting Atomic Breath out of his spikes and out of his tail was awesome and the whole crowd cheered quite a bit during this moment. It’s a little morbid since he basically took out an entire city, but who wasn’t rooting for Godzilla? I was definitely on Team Kaiju from the start. Godzilla keeps the army at bay for quite a while and he looks fairly tough as you would expect. However, I wasn’t completely thrilled with his portrayal as I had some negatives.

My first gripe is that they went with CGI for Godzilla instead of a suit. CGI can work decently well at times I suppose, but this wasn’t one of them. This is easily the worst Godzilla design of all time aside from the 1998 film which barely counts. People chuckled when Godzilla first appeared in his Rooster form and I was fairly shocked. Luckily, it was just something to throw us off, but I don’t think that Godzilla’s first stage should look like that. Even once he turned into his final form, Godzilla felt fairly off. I’m not crazy about the fact that it always looks like he is bleeding when he walks and that he has to shoot out blood in his first form.

While I don’t mind the narrow stream of Atomic Breath, it certainly looks more impressive when it is a wide blast. Also, I don’t like the way his face has to completely open up in order to shoot the blast. It looks a little gross and disturbing like the Predator’s true face in the classic horror series. It almost makes it seem like a weakness as he will be very vulnerable during that time. The back rays are still cool as they can react in time to stop high speed missiles, but Godzilla shouldn’t run out of energy so quickly. I always have to mention moments that I deem as “plot hax” in these films and Resurgence is no exception. The humans obviously have to come up with some kind of plan at the end, but I would have been more content with Godzilla just walking away like in the 2014 movie. Without going into detail, the plan should not have worked. Godzilla seemed to lose all of his smarts as he walked into every trap and expended energy when he did not need too. It should have been game over for the humans right from the get go and even knocking him down was a bit of a stretch. Either this Godzilla is less durable than some of the others or he just underestimated them. If the film was trying to portray the latter, I didn’t quite buy into it.

The soundtrack for the film is definitely pretty good. There were one or two themes that were memorable like the opera esque tune. Seeing the original Godzilla theme return with a new remix was definitely a lot of fun as well. I was actually expecting more homages to the original films, but I suppose you don’t really need them since the film holds up so well on its own. I really would have liked a good cliffhanger to end the film though. I suppose you could count a certain scene as a possible cliffhanger, but I wanted another monster to roar or something. This film seems like it isn’t really leading up to a sequel so maybe we’ll the next live action film will be another take on the classic franchise.

While listing all of the films in order is tough, in order to celebrate Godzilla’s latest film I thought I’d give it my best shot in this review. Tentatively here’s how I rank them and each row is in order. Keep in mind that these ranks are comparatively so just because a Godzilla film is in D rank doesn’t mean that I consider it to be remotely as bad as films like Pixels and I Know What You Did Last Summer. I’m doing this list off of my head so I’m not looking at my older reviews or blog posts for reference. As a result, the list may look a little different than it would if we went purely by the scores that I gave. It’s been a while since I saw these films so I may remember them differently, but I also didn’t have time to look at all of my posts so this was a little simpler.

S Rank Godzilla Final Wars, GMK, Ghidorah The Three Headed Monster, Godzilla vs Hedorah, Godzilla vs Mecha Godzilla II, Godzilla (2000), Terror of Mecha Godzilla

A Rank Godzilla vs King Kong, Godzilla vs Mecha Godzilla, Godzilla Against Mecha Godzilla, Godzilla Tokyo SOS, Invasion of the Astro Monster, Godzilla vs Destoroyah, Mothra vs Godzilla

B Rank Godzilla vs Space Godzilla, Godzilla vs King Ghidorah, Godzilla vs Ebirah, Godzilla’s Revenge, Godzilla vs Gigan, Godzilla vs Mothra, Godzilla vs Megalon

C Rank Destroy All Monsters, Godzilla (2014) Son of Godzilla, Godzilla Resurgence

D Rank Godzilla Raids Again, Gojira (1954), Godzilla vs Biollante, Godzilla (1998), The Return of Godzilla, Godzilla vs Megaguirus

It’s definitely tough to list them all and my feelings on the films can be really contradictory. Take Godzilla (2014) and Godzilla Resurgence as they are the two latest films. On one hand, I feel like Godzilla was easily the more intense film. The action scenes were great and the Muto made for a really good villain. The mythos around the film are more interesting and the ending was much better. On the other hand, the human characters in Resurgence were far superior as well as the writing and the pacing. Resurgence never drags on or has any real filler scenes. It captures the impact of Godzilla’s first appearance a lot better and the comedic tones work really well. So…should Godzilla really beat Resurgence? Both films are just so close that it is really hard to stick with one over the other for long, but alas decisions must be made at some point.

Overall, Godzilla Resurgence is definitely a fun film. The humans are easily some of the most interesting and least annoying ones that I have seen in a very long time. I also haven’t seen a Japanese live action film in a very long time so it is interesting to see how they film the movie as opposed to the ones that I’m used too. There are a lot more close ups on the characters, which worked well for comedic effect, but I don’t think I would want that to happen too often. The only real weak point of the movie is the fact that there are no other monsters and that Godzilla’s design isn’t all that good. Still, I definitely recommend it to all Godzilla fans and to anyone that likes a good creature feature. The pacing is very quick so the film never drags on. I look forward to seeing the new Godzilla animated film or the American one coming up. Either way, I will be awaiting them at the theater.

Overall 7/10

Leatherback vs Godzilla


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Godzilla - Mar 2014
Leatherback has returned, but this time he is facing the true King of the Kaiju. Leatherback will find that he has met his match in physical strength as well as energy output. Godzilla’s Atomic Breath cannot be nullified and while Leatherback has a lot of durability, it simply won’t be enough to endure multiple shots. Ont he other hand, Leatherback would lose in a hand to hand rumble so he is doomed either way. This is why Godzilla has kept his throne at the top of the Kaiju food chain for so long. Godzilla wins.

Godzilla in Hell Review

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This comic review is a pretty big landmark for me because it is the first Godzilla comic book that I have ever read. That is probably a little surprising to hear since I’m such a big Godzilla fan, but my library simply doesn’t order the comics very often. I’m a comic reader, but not necessarily a collector. It’s the opposite with video games. When I saw that the library had picked this trade paperback up, I grabbed it instantly. I heard that this comic was quite different from the average Godzilla adventure and that is certainly true, but I suppose that it’s as good a way to enter the Godzilla comic part of the franchise as any other. It is a good comic although I feel like it could have gone a lot farther with this ambitious concept.

On the back of the book they have a quote from legendary comic reviewer Daniel Alvarez of Unleash The Fanboy about how this is the most unique Godzilla tale of them all. It is a little…sketchy how they completely took the quote out of context although I certainly agree with it and would argue that the reviewer would as well. This is the most unique Godzilla tale of them all and there will likely never be another one quite like it. That doesn’t mean that it is the best Godzilla tale of all time. Certainly not, but it’s a good one and that’s why I feel this mini series should have ran for a little longer. Another 5-6 issues would have given it time to really explore Godzilla’s time in hell. Who knows, if this sells well enough then maybe we will get a sequel.

As the title outright states, this series is about Godzilla being in Hell. (Or is he really there?) It works as a bit of an anthology as each issue has a different team behind it and Godzilla faces a new threat each time. The stories are still held together by the loose plot of Godzilla trying to get out and most anthologies have some kind of string holding the plot together, but for all intents and purposes, the comics are all separate. As such, I’ll review this in the style of an anthology with a paragraph for each individual issue rather than talking about it as a whole until the end.

The first issue sees Godzilla literally fall into Hell where he fights off a Dark version of himself who turns into a very deformed version of Biollante and threatens to eat him whole. Godzilla fends off his attack and makes his way into the next layer of Hell. It is a solid start to the collection and I dare say that it is the most compelling issue of the bunch. It doesn’t have as much action as some of the issues coming up, but it handled the concept better than the others. The big sign saying to abandon hope is something that you would expect to find in Hell, at least conceptually. Once you are in Hell, there is no hope at all. Simply put, the race is over and you made the wrong choice. Of course, Godzilla is not dead yet so he is not truly out of time. Plus, let’s face it, Godzilla doesn’t feel fear. The art for this issue was solid. It did a good job of showing the facial expressions for Godzilla and the fight was well done. This is really what a comic version of Godzilla should strive to look like and I definitely liked the design of the made up villain.

Following that strong start was the worst comic in the collection. The series tried to go for a live action look and it didn’t work. As far as I’m concerned, if DC’s Kingdom Come event couldn’t pull it off, nothing ever will. The fight scenes are very choppy and it’s a shame since this issue could have had the most action. This level of hell has demons transform into lookalikes from Godzilla’s past. Fake Rodan, Anguirus, Varan, and Ghidorah all attack the hero. Godzilla fends them all off and it should have been a really good issue. The art just takes you out of the adventure. I do like the use of the word bubbles here as they add more context and hint at what is actually going on here. Godzilla passes this trial with flying colors as he proves that he is more than a match for any demon. Of course, the trials will get stronger from here.

The third issue was the most colorful and went for more of a cartoony feel than the other two. This made for a great fight between Godzilla and Space Godzilla, but the facial expressions could be a little odd at times. It was uncharacteristic for Godzilla, but the fight scenes were worth it. Space Godzilla is definitely a worthy opponent for the King of the Monsters. This was also the strangest issue in the collection. So, this trial is essentially that Godzilla must defeat Space Godzilla without resorting to the temptations from both sides. Half of Hell wants him to become their god and rule while the others want him to work for Hell. You are led to believe at first that half of them worship God and want Godzilla to join, but they quickly switch to believers of Godzilla and also don’t seem trust worthy. Regardless, Godzilla eats them all and crushes the rest, but neither side seemed to have a clue as to what they were doing.

They were yelling about submitting to peace the entire time. Godzilla just kept on blasting them which is probably a safe bet. Why would angels be in Hell anyway unless they were fallen ones? I guess some Earthlings tried to come here as well since we saw that Moguera was toasted. It was an odd comic, but it also helps support the argument that this is all real and not simply a dream the most in my opinion. I don’t have a lot of concrete arguments to support that, but this issue felt like it could be real. More on that at the end.

Issue 4 also had some pretty nice art. It was a little more realistic, but still pretty vibrant which is good because the whole issue is a big fight with King Ghidorah and Destoroyah. Godzilla has to use his wits to defeat these two since their combined might is far greater than his. It is cool to see him actually using strategy like dividing the opponents and taking them out on at a time. He loses though and the second half of the issue sees him die over and over again. The problem is that since he is in Hell, he cannot die for good. He has been cursed with immortality and it is a somber thought. At the end he breaks out of this part of hell and makes his way to the final challenges. This was my favorite story. As a big action fan, it was fun to see some fights here and Godzilla being portrayed as more than a mindless monster is always good.

Finally, the collection ended with Godzilla facing off against the elements and the actual demons from Hell. In their true forms, they were finally playing for keeps here. Unfortunately, they got a little too overconfident and after destroying Godzilla, they reanimated him with fire, which was enough to jump start his body and allow him to regenerate. They should have quit while they were ahead. It ends with Godzilla rising out of the water and you have to ask, did this all really happen or was it in his head? The answer will come in a moment. Meanwhile, the art here was not as good as the last few issues. The final shot with Godzilla rising it great and it’s better than the live action issue, but it is too gray-scale for me. Comics don’t always have to be vibrant, but it just didn’t look that good and everything was just too faded. Still a good issue, but it’s always sad to see Godzilla lose due to sheer numbers. It is part of why I don’t like the Megaguirus film.

In the end, my answer is that this was all a dream. The final issue does state that winning against yourself is greater than a thousand victories. It said that such a win can never be taken away and those lines of dialogue really support the fact that this was in Godzilla’s head. It is still a little iffy as Godzilla is not the type to ever doubt himself and I don’t think he would need to conquer his inner demons. Still, I suppose that even Kaiju have things that they need to think about so it is not totally unreasonable to believe that Godzilla has to come to terms with himself now and again. I’ve never been all that opposed to reading a series that ended with the plot twist of it all being a dream so it is not all that bad. It is open to interpretation so feel free to choose another theory to follow, but this is definitely the one that I follow.

Overall, I think this series definitely could have benefited from being longer. Of course, it could have had the opposite effect as it really depends on an issue to issue basis. If the writers started to run out of ideas, then it is always best to quit while you are ahead. I definitely recommend this to any Godzilla fan. The concept is simply too priceless to pass up. I think the average comic reader should be able to enjoy it as well. There is very little dialogue here so it is more of a visual experience than anything else. That’s something that everyone can ultimately appreciate in a comic as long as there is some kind of interesting plot/good characters to go alongside it. I’ve finally entered the world of Godzilla comics, hopefully I am able to read another one someday!

Overall 7/10

Godzilla vs Balrog


Balrog500ppx
BurningGodzilla2
Godzilla and Balrog are both immensely powerful creatures. Balrog was initially not a giant, but the films decided to switch that up which gives Godzilla a decent fight. Balrog has a few powerful fore techniques and his fire sword would deal a great amount of damage to the Kaiju. For now I’ll say that Godzilla still has the edge here though. His Atomic Ray is nothing to sneeze at and Godzilla has been wrecking his opponents with his superior boxing skills for some time now. He won’t go down very easily and also has his Burning Godzilla form to fall back on. Godzilla wins.

Bowser vs Godzilla


Bowser
Godzilla - Mar 2014
This could be a little controversial, but I’m going with Bowser all the way here. His Giga Bowser form greatly amps up his attack power and he has enough projectiles to hit and run against Godzilla. Bowser definitely has the edge in speed here and his Clown Car can safely let him travel through the air. Godzilla will have an incredibly difficult time landing any good hits in this round while Bowser will be sniping him the entire time. The hits will add up and then it’s game over for the big G! Bowser wins.

Papa Lazarou vs Godzilla


papalazarou
Godzilla - Mar 2014
Godzilla is fairly huge and he has his Atomic Breath to keep opponents from getting too close to him. Papa Lazarou just won’t be able to overcome something like that. There’s no attack at his disposal that can even hope to injure Godzilla so his best bet is to beat a hasty retreat and just try to buy some time for himself. He will only be postponing the inevitable though and soon, he shall be left in awe of the King of the Monsters! Godzilla wins.