It’s another light news week this week, and another late recap.
Kicking things off with Godzilla, as I’m sure you’re aware, we got a new poster for The Planet Eater, which hits November 9. That Ghidorah is going to make one weird vinyl figure.
Makoto Tezka’s crazy musical Legend of the Stardust Brothers is finally getting an English-language release. I wonder if the fact that the 33-year-old cult picture just got a sequel earlier this year had something to do with it.
The manga comedy Tokusatsu Gagaga, about an office lady who’s a closet otaku for superhero stuff, is getting a J-drama series next year. The manga is great, so hopefully the TV show gets picked up by someone.
A trailer for the Jinga: Kami no Kiba spinoff from Garo:
Speaking of unusual collaborations, the girls of Momoiro Clover Z found themselves in the Drifting Classroom on their new album cover, with art by Kazuo Umezz! I wonder how it compared to that time they all turned into zombies?
Finally, because why not, a Chinese giant snake movie creatively titled Snake:
Well, time to bounce before spending hours deciding whether or not it’s worth weighing in on this new Netflix Avatar show.
Kaiju Transmissions just had their 100th episode! Not ones to do anything special for such a milestone, they instead decided to chat with me about the book and about obscure kaiju flicks in general. It’s cool for me to be a part of such podcast history, but hopefully everyone enjoys listening to it too!
Another two-week summary here, since it’s been light. In fact, you’d hardly know there was any giant monster content this week if you weren’t looking for it.
The big news this week is that Gaina (formerly Fukushima Gainax) announced the eventual production of Gunbuster 3. With the way the studio has been going in recent years, it’s hard to muster much enthusiasm, even with a title as iconic as Gunbuster. They’re also still claiming to be working on Uru in Blue.
Discotek really went insane with their latest batch of acquisitions at Otakon this weekend. First, license rescues of Galaxy Express 999 (good, since the last release of that show was awful), Giant Robo (one of the best OVAs ever made), and Kimagure Orange Road (the aggressively-80s ESPer romcom which I’ve gushed about ad nauseum on this blog before);
Then there were a batch of super robot licenses: Voltes V, Baldios, God Mars, and Govarian. I think there may be more vintage super robots that they’ve licensed than ones that they haven’t at this point.
But what really blew everyone’s mind was the announcements of Message from Space: Galactic Wars (the briefly had the original movie that it spun off from…I think. That was a confusing one) and the Metal Hero show Juspion! August Ragone is doing special features for those releases (of course), and says that they’re testing the market for live action titles again; this is great news, considering that just a year or two ago it seemed like they’d given up. Juspion is a great pick, both from the kaiju angle and the upcoming Brazilian movie, so here’s hoping this is a hit! Both of those are due early next year.
Oh, and they had a new dub trailer for Hells. It looks good.
A trailer for Godzilla: The Planet Eater. You didn’t think we’d skip a Godzilla trailer, did you?
The Shinkalion episode spoofing Evangelion really went all out, getting Eva‘s voice cast to reprise roles, and introducing a nifty amalgamated angel design, King Shitoel. I might just have to watch the whole series.
This trailer for Boogiepop Doesn’t Laugh is gorgeous. I wonder if the show will be as difficult as Boogiepop Phantom was.
Following Ushio & Tora, it’s only natural that director Satoshi Nishimura would do another adaptation of a Kazuhiro Fujita manga (albeit at a different studio). Thus, we’re looking forward to Karakuri Circus.
Two new posters have been posted for Great Buddha Arrival. Apparently it is a feature film, after all.
The web series tie-in for the second Gintama movie probably steps on a copyright or two:
This ad for the next season of One Punch Man features no new animation.
I can’t help but cringe a bit at this Anime Expo coverage promoting SSSS Gridman.
Rinshi Ekoda-chan is an upcoming anthology anime about a woman seeking romance around Tokyo. I notice an Ultraseven cosplay in the image for the episode directed by Yoshitomo Yonetani (Dororon Enma-kun Burning Up, Gaogaigar Final). The original work is a quirky 4-panel manga, though, which doesn’t always adapt into full episodes well.
Off-genre topic, but this trailer for the new City Hunter looks on-point. Really, my only requirement was the inclusion of Get Wild and a magnum, which were delivered in the first shot.
That’s it for this week; it’s been light otherwise. All the more time to watch movies with!
Ever since Michael Dougherty teased that there might be some unannounced monsters yet to appear in Legendary’s MonsterVerse, fandom has been ablaze with hypotheses, rampantly speculating about their favorites that they’d like to see show up, such as Gigan, Bagan, Destroyah, Anguirus, Bagan, Gamera, Bagan, Mechagodzilla, and Bagan.
As a purveyor of kaiju wisdom, then, it’s my absolute obligation to suggest- ….no, to demand, that the studio immediately emphasize the most iconic and essential entries in Godzilla’s massive roster of titanic opponents, giving the public a complete and unbiased perspective on the subject. Thus, to help the studio along in this task, I prepared a handy list of the critical monster characters not to be missed; I have it on good authority that the directors of the movies have access to the internet, so I’m sure they’re waiting on this valuable feedback. So listen here, Hollywood: be sure to do justice to all these Godzilla series mainstays, if you want to ensure a satisfied audience and a successful franchise!
Kicking things off with a no-brainer fan favorite, the inclusion of Mechaghidorah is obvious now that you have King Ghidorah established in the cinematic universe. They could even do a dramatic reveal where they think they’re fighting King Ghidorah, but it’s really Mechaghidorah in disguise…what a twist!
Given that Gigan has an Easter egg cameo in Pacific Rim Uprising, it’s pretty safe to say that Legendary intends to make a Gigan standalone movie. I mean, they did that with Gundam, after all. Clearly, then, they should go with the most recent incarnation of the character, which would be the one from Televi Magazine.
This deadly Godzilla antagonist has a giant drill for his entire head, making him quite a destructive force to be dealt with. With that iconic silhouette, maybe they could tease him in a post-credits sequence before putting him in the next film?
This space vampire (just in time for a reboot of Twilight, maybe?) is a perfect foil for Godzilla, but if he absorbs enough of Godzilla’s blood, he could get his own spinoff movie, or possibly a buddy flick with Jyarumu and Balkzardan. The tickets practically sell themselves!
Another fan-favorite that crowds have been clamoring for. Perhaps, like how Serizawa says “Gojira” instead of “Godzilla”; he could also refer to Obsidius by its original moniker, Magmouth.
Despite appearing in the opening credits to every episode of Godzilla the Series, Flying Gigan hasn’t gotten his own movie yet. Come on, make it happen, Legendary.
Protected by sharp spines on all sides, the cactus-like Gororin could give any of the plant-inspired creatures of Skull Island a run for their money. He also has nigh-limitless merchandising potential, from keychains to action figures to cereal boxes; who can resist?
Female representation hasn’t been very strong in the MonsterVerse thus far. It looks like Godzilla: King of the Monsters is starting to turn that around, but there’s still a long way to go; how better to give both sexes equal treatment than by introducing a female Godzillasaur? Of course, you would have to update her design to match the Legendary Godzilla, but you should still keep the pink skin, eyelashes, and heart-shaped spines to remain faithful to the source material.
The Mega Monsters
A space-bound team with unique powers? If Guardians of the Galaxy tells me anything, that’s absolutely a recipe for success; the Mega Monsters need their own movie ASAP! If you don’t do it, Marvel might.. or perhaps we could get one of those situations like how Quicksilver was in two movies by different studios at the same time? Oh, what potential!
The Lord Howe Monster
With all the monsters appearing in the MonsterVerse, it’s only natural that humankind should be experimenting with biological weapons to combat them, and obviously the most intuitive form that would take is a giant bipedal crustacean with laser eyes. Plus, that way you wouldn’t have to force any actors to use fake American accents; they could use fake Australian accents instead.
Bulwalar and Killerstar
These monsters gave Godzilla quite a run for his money back in the 70s, and are poised big time for a revival, especially if you bring in the Alpha aliens…the MonsterVerse has been sorely lacking in silver jumpsuits so far, and this needs to be course-corrected soon. Some of the hardcore fans might get upset if you skip over Nahmon, but whatever, general audiences aren’t going to be as invested in a lesser-known monster like that one.
Apparently all those times Gareth Edwards talked about putting Godzooky in the 2014 movie he was actually kidding! A fake Comic Con trailer with an Oppenheimer quote and a marketing campaign leaning heavily on an actor killed off in the first act is one thing, but why would he subvert expectations by not including Godzilla’s flying, Scooby Doo-voiced nephew in the dark, gritty reboot?
Audiences love a mystery, and the enigmatic Kaikotsu is perfect for filling that role. Where did it come from? Whose side is it on? What’s its endgame? Will it ever find love? I’m on the edge of my seat just thinking about it.
Family is a strong theme throughout the MonsterVerse movies, and what better familial story to tell than the kinship between a clan of 75 foot-tall alien big-game hunters? Arguably Oscar-bait, I know.
Like the phrase goes, “two three-headed monsters are better than one”, so with King Ghidorah appearing in the new movie, a lot of audiences are gonna be asking “so, when are they going to get to Tricephalon?”
Ever ready to play off against the tough guy protagonists that the MonsterVerse films have had so far, Mamgon is a hard bitch, but great with kids. Also, she probably knows karate.
So far, the MonsterVerse has shied away from incorporating alien invaders, but they’re too big a part of the Godzilla mythos to sideline for much longer. Of course, as the most iconic of Toho’s roster of space people, the ones from that time Godzilla and Rodan went to another planet and fought Ghidorah there, The Dracund are the indisputable go-to.
Remember that gorgeous HALO jump from Godzilla 2014? It was stirring, as the imagery was meant to evoke the feeling that the soldiers were descending into the pits of Hell. But why be metaphorical when you can be literal? Godzilla’s been to Hell, and there were soldiers with who came down with actual halos…and Mothra wings.
I know you’ve gotten a lot of pressure to include Gigan, who in fairness is everybody’s favorite fire-breathing, teleporting, cyborg chicken. However, why use a fire-breathing, teleporting, cyborg chicken when you could use a fire-breathing, teleporting, cyborg tapir? Tapirs need representation in Hollywood too, y’know.
Now that Rodan has been included in the MonsterVerse, it should go without saying that at some point scientists will strap missile launchers to his back and legs. But, the sooner you get on it, the sooner you can make the Dino-Riders movie look like it’s copying you.
Firefighter Jet Jaguar
Both Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island have had heroes in the armed forces, but it’s about time to honor some other brave heroes, namely firefighters. In the name of due credit, you should make the protagonist of your next film a member of a fire department, and also a grinning anthropoid robot.
One of the few enemies to successfully battle Godzilla to a standstill, Charles Barkley has engaged the monster across multiple forms of media. You’ll probably want to realize this one via motion capture, though, as the role was probably quite tricky for the stuntman who I assume was inside that lifelike Charles Barkley suit.
People have been making a big deal about how Ghidorah is so huge compared to Godzilla in the new movie, while Toho and Legendary have had their measuring contest to see who can deliver the biggest monster. Well, I say, go gigantic or go home! Yoganzee is enormous compared to Godzilla, so there’s really no reason not to include him. Plus, a climax where Godzilla has to solve puzzle games will totally be a move nobody sees coming.
We all love the good old-fashioned action movie where the bad guys kidnap the hero’s girlfriend and he’s got to go rescue her. Thus, Bijira is just the damsel in distress that the franchise could use. You can maybe cast Liam Neeson or Jason Statham in the Godzilla role, provided they’re capable of breathing fire shaped like a boxing glove at auditions.
One of the oldest monsters in the Godzilla pantheon, Raban is a fine fit for the MonsterVerse, as is his mechanical doppelganger. You should include a disclaimer in the end credits, though, that not all vaccine injections will cause people to turn into giant lizards, because otherwise unintended political baggage will haunt the movie’s release buzz and you’ll get picketers.
A little sex appeal could really go a long way for the franchise, so Gamoni’s giant breasts could bring in that skin-thirsty teenage demographic. She does, however, shoot flames from them, and vomits spider, which admittedly some of the audience will find less erotic.
It’s important, with this new American take on Godzilla, to learn lessons from the previous Hollywood-based re-imagining… namely the book Godzilla Discovers America. The moral there is: people want to see Godzilla fall in love with a giant roach, and then run for congress. Legendary has already had him destroy the Golden Gate Bridge, and that doesn’t happen until the end of the story!
Easily Toho’s second most popular monster after Godzilla, the octopus ninja Takora has clashed with the king of the monsters on multiple occasions, and is only increasing in reputation. Honestly, I don’t know why we don’t just skip Godzilla vs Kong and go straight to Godzilla vs Takora.
I know what you’re thinking: a goofy trunk and a hide covered with hearts is a little too silly for the serious tone of the MonsterVerse. However, you can tell that Osoros is a cool guy, because he wears sunglasses, which makes him automatically more mature.
A classic recurring antagonist in the Godzilla films, fans have been clamoring for a return of Giant Condor to the big screen. He’s an obvious standout in the pantheon, and I assume that there are already plans to bring him in, but I have to warn you, Legendary: do this guy right, or else there will be hell to pay. Giant Condor shouldn’t be rendered in CGI, puppetry, or animatronics; his is a vision that can only be properly achieved via splicing in stock footage from Ebirah, Horror of the Deep. Any special effects technician disputing this fact should be shown the door.
Obviously, the fandom has been clamoring for a big-screen showdown between Godzilla and Maoh, but you don’t want to blow everything at once, right? Of course not! Instead, take a page out of when Justice League used Steppenwolf instead of Darkseid, and save the *real* antagonist for the movie down the road.
Newzilla Godzilla 2014 did most things right when it came to adapting the character for American audiences, but one important detail it left out was how Americans require Raymond Burr and gratuitous product placement for Dr. Pepper in order to really understand a movie’s subtext. Burr is a difficult lead to cast these days, but by including Newzilla, you’ll be halfway there.
Armie the Armadillo
As the MonsterVerse movies start to downplay involvement from the US Army, they could make up for it by increasing involvement from the Armie. By which, of course, I mean the giant armadillo briefly mentioned in the book Godzilla: Journey to Monster Island. Just as the MUTOs threatened to annihilate society with their EMPs, Armie could pose a tremendous threat by constantly jumping out in front of peoples’ cars.
One of the great tragic figures of the franchise is Kitty, a poor woman with a hideous deformity of unknown origin. Her head is bloated, her complexion pallid, her ears are huge, and she has no mouth. Despite that, she does her job with no complaints, and nobody treats her with pity; it’s quite an inspirational story even if we surprisingly don’t see much more of her backstory.
Mr. Meringue The Movie Monster Game has such innovative and original creations; can you imagine seeing something like Mr. Meringue up on the big screen? A giant white puffy dessert man, he’s truly unlike anything attempted in cinema before.
A common criticism of Godzilla 2014 is that it frequently cuts away from the action to characters watching it on a TV screen. The frustration of this effect could be lessened if the human characters watching the TV shared their room with a little robot Godzilla who also watched it, and they commented on the proceedings together.
Playing off of the whole “ancient hidden titans” motif that Godzilla: King of the Monsters seems to be going for, why not hit up the Bermuda Triangle, and its iconic kaiju (er, aside from Kong Island and The Bermuda Depths) Amphibion. While it’s only appeared in audio so far, the lobster claws and huge dorsal fin just beg to be rendered by hundreds of millions of dollars in CGI.
a regular rat
Ah, the rat, who’s dueled with Godzilla on many occasions. He’s a memorable foe to include, provided the studio is willing to grant you the license. Now, being a completely unremarkable and everyday rodent, you will have to shrink Godzilla in order to make this a fair fight. Nobody will recognize that it’s Godzilla if you give him a little trench coat and fedora, though.
Godzilla’s most iconic adversaries tend to be allegories for things: pollution, war, hubris, etc. Most of this symbolism has been tapped in the MonsterVerse, but we still haven’t gotten any monsters channeling mankind’s ongoing struggle with seasonal allergies. I assume this oversight will be corrected posthaste.
Ken Watanabe’s Serizawa hasn’t quite captured the iconic tragedy of the original, and I think that’s largely because his character arc is still incomplete. To be truly memorable, he too must make the ultimate sacrifice, of growing huge and shooting a laser beam from under his eyepatch.
There you go, Legendary. Just make sure to include all of these in your next movie, and there’s no way it can go wrong. Trust me, I’m a fan, so I know what the people want.
Not a whole lot to talk about this week, but here goes:
Has it already been a decade since Kamen Rider Decade? Evidently so, as Toei is reusing the concept for Kamen Rider Zi-O (not to be confused with Kamen Rider ZO), doing the whole “this hero gets to visit and use the powers of past riders” thing. Here’s hoping it’ll be better than Decade was….wonder if the Amazons will make a cameo appearance?
Apparently there’s a practical suit for the anime version of Gridman. It’s neat to see how the design changed side by side like this.
After the sort of not-so-hot finale of Digimon Adventure Tri, I’m surprised to see Toei already back to the well for another sequel after another time skip.
Hey, remember that Evangelion 4.0 trailer that wasn’t up last week? Now it’s been posted officially.
A new trailer for the new season of Thunderbolt Fantasy.
Speaking of puppets, here’s the Howl from Beyond the Fog trailer from G-Fest.
There’s now a trailer out for Castlevania season 2. After Voltron ends, this may be Netflix’s pillar of animated originals.