Characters / Godzilla (2014)

This is for the Kaiju and human characters of Godzilla (2014). For the rest of the franchise, go here.

For all of Toho's incarnation of Godzilla, go here.
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The last known living member of a species of giant, amphibious beast that roamed the Earth back when the planet was being bombarded by radiation during the Permian period. The military found out about the creature in 1954, and tried to cover up his existence with several nuclear strikes that were reported as tests - but these failed to have any effect on the monster. He eventually re-emerges in 2014, having a score to settle with the Muto.

In regards to the merchandise for the series as a whole, this version of the Big G is known as "Legendary Godzilla" to differentiate him from Toho's version, which also serves as a Shout-Out to the movie's producer.
  • Accidental Hero: His actions in the final act saved countless lives; killing the Mutos saved what remains of San Francisco and stops what could have been a global epidemic of their species. Humanity honestly didn't seem to mind, and the people of San Francisco, at the very least, seem to have embraced him with open arms, if the loud cheers and visible gestures of goodwill that are shown when Godzilla makes his way out of the city the morning after the battle are any indication.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Unlike most versions of the character who are usually antagonistic (and a huge case with his original incarnation, a Tragic Monster), but not as much as his Showa incarnation from Godzilla Raids Again through Destroy All Monsters who had a hefty dose of Characterization Marches On. Despite his actions in Hawaii (where he swamps Waikiki beach, the most densely populated area that time of night), he avoids attacking humans as he can and most of his rampages is due to the Mutos posing a threat while maintaining his Destructive Hero status per his previous incarnations.
  • Ancient Astronauts: All those sea dragons in medieval texts are in fact him, as the opening credits show, and he was written about dating back to prehistoric cave paintings.
  • Anti-Hero:
    • The only reason why he hunts the Mutos is not because he wants to stop their destruction, but because their two species are natural enemies; the Mutos are parasites while Godzilla is an apex predator. Yet ultimately his goals end up being in humanity's favor, restoring balance to the world and saving them by destroying the Muto for good. Of course, in the process he destroys two major cities and kills tens of thousands of people. He's a 350 foot tall radioactive creature, finesse is not exactly his strong suit and morality isn't exactly his concern when he has the mind of a wild animal.
    • Anyone familiar with older Godzilla movies would have expected a far bigger number of humans and buildings that fell prey to him. However, this can merely be attributed to the fact that he is essentially made out to be more realistic in this movie than in most of the Toho films. The Golden Gate Bridge scene is a great example of this: just because he did not intentionally walk through the bridge does not mean he is a "good guy", just that real animals would not go out of their way to destroy every object in their path but would instead normally walk around them.
    • At the end of the film he is seen by one of the main characters as having his usual sentience, making him a hardcore anti-hero.
  • Art Evolution: He has once again had his design updated. The most noticeable changes are gills on his neck, round, sauropod-like feet, and a much longer tail. The film crew also spent quite a while tweaking his face:
    Edwards: Trying to get the face right was the main thing... I guess he's got more of a bear's face, or a dog's. We also used eagle. There's a lot of nobility in an eagle. It made him feel very majestic and noble.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: Gets his title "King of the Monsters" through defeating the M.U.T.O.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: His gills are quite sensitive and seem to be his most vulnerable area.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: At 355 feet tall, a total length of 550 feet 2 inches long, and 90,000 tons, this is the biggest and heaviest Godzilla of all time. At least, until Nightmare Godzilla came along, standing roughly 389 feet tall. No word on it's weight though.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: After his triumph against the Muto, the American media bestows the well-earned title of "King Of The Monsters" upon him.
  • Badass Grandpa: He's possibly the oldest incarnation of Godzilla seen on screen thus far—not just in chronological age, but in the way he acts. His scars tell the tale of many, many old battles, and at several points in the film, he just looks tired, like an old soldier dragged away from a nap. Several critics even compared him to John McClane.
  • Bears are Bad News: His stance, design and fighting style are based off of those of bears quite a bit. A case of Shown Their Work, as Gojira's original suit actor based his movement on that of bears after studying them in zoos.
  • Behind the Black: Godzilla manages to pull this off several times despite his enormous size. For instance, during the Honolulu airport attack a helicopter shoots at the M.U.T.O. only to suddenly have to dodge Godzilla's dorsal spikes. Said M.U.T.O. itself doesn't notice Godzilla until he stomps down just a few dozen feet away from him.
  • Big Damn Heroes: The Mutos seem unstoppable until he pimps into town to show them who's boss. The big reveal in the Honolulu airport suggests this trope, but really it's the final showdown in the San Francisco Bay that best captures it, after Ford blows up the female Muto's egg, she attempts to kill him. Cue atomic breath, allowing Ford to escape.
  • Big Good: In a very loose way, he is seen as this by Dr. Serizawa, who notes that the creature is humanity's best chance at survival.
  • Bioluminescence Is Cool: His dorsal plates begin to light up blue, just like they do in the TOHO films. The new film adds in the plates glowing blue from the tail up, a la Godzilla: The Series.
  • Breath Weapon: Godzilla has this power, true to the original incarnation of him. Unlike the laser appearance from Toho's Heisei and Millennium eras, this incarnation's atomic breath is similar to the superheated vapor appearance from the Showa era. He uses it as the coup de grâce against the female Muto three times, but it's only when he force-feeds it to her that it has any real effect.
  • Combat Pragmatism: While it can be difficult to see, he does adapt to his opponents based on their strengths and weaknesses. It's also how he kills them most effectively. This may also be why he seems to avoid the boats by diving under them and does not destroy the Golden Gate Bridge until he literally falls through it.
  • Comic-Book Movies Don't Use Codenames: Averted. Despite rumors that Godzilla would not be referred to as such in this film, Dr. Serizawa introduces him during the briefing as "Gojira" and the military uses the name Godzilla as a code name for the beast. News broadcasts even dub him "King of the Monsters."
  • Covered in Scars: He is covered in tumorous-looking scars intended to resemble those experienced by victims of radiation.
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: In comparison to the previous Godzillas, he does not go out of his way to destroy everything in sight. Some of the damages he causes seems to be accidental instead of intentional. He does not even bear a grudge against the humans who nuked him in 1954, in stark contrast to his original incarnation who hates humans for what he has become. While he's Heisei Godzilla in personality (as in aggressive fighter), he does not even attack the humans who pulls the trigger at him because he's more focused in defeating the Mutos. Previous incarnations will annihilate tank and ship units if they inconvenience him. This thing? Dive under ship units and does not bother attacking tank units on the Golden Gate Bridge. And let's not get into details about Shin Godzilla
  • Dark is Not Evil: Zig-zagged. While he is potentially as dangerous to humanity as the Mutos (if not more so), he also serves as a Destructive Savior. It is notable that Godzilla does not go out of his way to destroy stuff like he usually does.
  • Dangerous Forbidden Technique: The descriptions for the tie-in toys refer to Godzilla's Atomic Breath as being a powerful last resort due to it draining his internal radiation supplies. The 2014 video game illustrates this by only giving him two charges and a longer recharge time.
  • Destructive Savior: Even though he's mankind's only hope against the Mutos (this does not necessarily make him a true hero, only in the metaphorical sense), Godzilla leaves a substantial amount of destruction in his wake. He doesn't intentionally destroy stuff, though. It's mostly just a case of him just passing through, as he's just that big. At the end of the film he is hailed (accurately) as the saviour of the human race, making him a literal Destructive Saviour.
  • Determinator: Chases the Muto relentlessly for miles and when he finally catches up to them, continues fighting even as he was being mauled by the two at once while constantly getting back up no matter how severely he's beaten down. Even a skyscraper collapsing on him only slowed him down for a few minutes.
  • Disney Death: The nuke that was dropped on him in the beginning should've killed him, right? Nope, he lived through it. This happens twice in the last battle, both times coming out alive but exhausted after a long and brutal fight with each of the Mutos. The first time occurs when he's buried by a skyscraper after crushing the male Muto against it. The second time occurs when he literally collapses to the ground after killing the female Muto, and stays there well into the next day before waking up.
  • Dynamic Entry: Taken to awesome levels in the airport scene. We get a shot of Godzilla's massive foot, then Godzilla in full view roars at his opponent. He did this again when facing off with the female Muto.
  • Edible Ammunition: Theoretically, this should apply to him, though we see no signs that he absorbs radiation in the same way he did during the Heisei series. However as proved in the prologue set in 1954, nuking Godzilla doesn't seem to work and probably just made him even stronger.
  • Enemy Mine: Of a sort - he refuses to attack the military (who attack him on occasion) because they are opposed to the MUTOs. It helps that it's quite quickly established that the military is effectively no threat to either of them.
  • Era-Specific Personality: The film once again makes him the terrifying force of nature he was in his earliest films but also continues the Heisei/Millennium portrayal of him being an unintentional defender of humans from other monsters.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: He comes from the Permian period predating dinosaurs but he retains much of the classic Godzilla's look. The extras on the Blu-Ray clarifying that, yes, this Godzilla is a Dinosaur, though being from the Permian means he could be either one of the first dinosaurs or he's a extremely derived dinosauriform...
  • Everything's Better with Samurai: Not used or invoked in the film itself, but Gareth Edwards has said that if this incarnation of Godzilla were a human, he would be "the last samurai".
    Gareth Edwards: He's an ancient warrior who's the last of his kind, and his kind has long since died out. He lives a very solitary lonely existence and he's very happy to keep away from everyone, but we keep doing things to force him to return and put things right.
  • Gaia's Vengeance:
    • Gareth Edwards stated that Godzilla is a "representation of the wrath of nature."
    Edwards: Godzilla is definitely a representation of the wrath of nature. The theme is man versus nature and Godzilla is certainly the nature side of it. You can't win that fight. Nature's always going to win and that's what the subtext of our movie is about. He's the punishment we deserve.
    • In-universe, Dr. Serizawa believes nature sent Godzilla to restore balance to the world by hunting the Mutos.
  • Genius Bruiser: Godzilla is rather crafty for a giant reptile. After seeing how his atomic breath only had a minor effect on the female Muto, he switched to grabbing her head and firing it down her throat until it decapitated her. As for the male Muto, Godzilla was having difficulty dealing with the male constantly resorting to hit and run attacks from the air. So Godzilla suckered the male into attacking him from behind by pretending that he didn't know it was there, then giving him a tail attack that knocked the male out of the air into a protruding beam, impaling it.
  • Giant Equals Invincible: He shrugs off all bullets, tank rounds, and sea-to-ground missiles. It is confirmed in the movie that he can survive point-blank nuclear explosions in the kiloton range, though they have no idea what megaton-level explosions will do. However, the nuclear initiation that the movie shows targeting him is known to us as the Castle Bravo test, which is famous not only for being one of the first multimegaton tests, but for unfortunately exceeding expectations — the expected 4-8 megaton explosion was roughly 15 megatons. No nuke in the current arsenal is capable of that note .
  • Giant Wall of Watery Doom: He displaces so much water that he kills hundreds of people in massive tsunamis just from rising out of the ocean.
  • Glasgow Grin: He has a "born with it" variation, though it's only really visible when he opens his mouth to roar or use his atomic breath. Its design seems to be based off the similar "smiles" of many real life reptiles.
  • Godzilla Threshold: He seems to have one of his own - the signature Atomic Breath, which he only uses once in Awakening and a couple of times in the climax of the film.
  • Good Is Not Soft: While he does avoid killing humans on most occasions, he isn't against risking lives by damaging property if it means it will help him take down his enemies. For instance, his first appearance in Hawaii causes a tsunami that kills hundreds. And he gives the Mutos themselves no quarter whatsoever — both their inevitable deaths prove brutal.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: He is covered in big red scars. This calls to mind the original design philosophy Toho had, in that his skin was supposed to resemble the keloid scars that the survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings developed.
  • Heavy Sleeper: If the climax is anything to go by, so much so that when he gets tired and decides to take a nap after defeating the Mutos, the military initially assumes him to be dead.
  • Hell Is That Noise:
    • Needless to say, his roar was best described by Gareth Edwards, himself. He said it was, "A roar of nature. A roar of rage."
    • Erik Aadahl refused to reveal how he created the roar — even to Gareth Edwards — so as not to diminish its capacity to incite fear.
  • Heroic Second Wind: Manages to gather enough strength to get back up on his feet after suffering many severe injuries from a terribly long battle and being crushed by a skyscraper.
  • Impossibly Graceful Giant: Played with. He is a lumbering behemoth who causes a lot of damage just by walking through an area, but he is especially graceful in the water, capable of sneaking up on the M.U.T.O. kaiju just fine, and seems to be trying to weave his way through the cities as much as he can to avoid too much damage unlike the M.U.T.O. He's only walking fast to humans because his strides are so long in comparison.
  • It Can Think: He gives the distinct impression of regarding the protagonist, Ford Brody, at one point when they gaze at each other close up.
  • The Juggernaut: As per usual, he is nearly indestructible, even surviving a nuclear blast prior to the events of the film. This is also his most heavily built incarnation to date. He's so powerful that Dr. Wates poetically makes him out to be a Physical God.
  • Kaiju: The most famous giant monster of all is back in a new movie.
  • Last of His Kind: He is described as the last of a species that lived when the Earth's surface was still being heavily bombarded by radiation.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: The look he gives the male MUTO before tail-whipping it to death screams this.
  • Made of Iron: He survived being nuked multiple times, and it's implied that this made him stronger. First nuke he took? Castle Bravo, a 15 megaton hydrogen bomb. It did nothing to him. Artillery attacks, tank shells, and bullets, he doesn't even notice. Missiles? A mild nuisance. He even takes a skyscraper collapsing on him and manages to get back up. Only attacks from the Mutos put him in any mortal danger. If you know your Godzilla, this is to be expected.
    • Dented Iron: He's absolutely ancient, and shows it at times, especially after the beating he takes in the final fight. After killing the Male MUTO, he pauses to catch his breath, and once the female's dead he outright collapses.
  • Meaningful Name: According to the next Toho film, Godzilla (or Gojira) officially means "God incarnate". Considering how he depicted as such, now it makes perfect sense.
  • Mighty Glacier: While he's not as particularly fast as some of his previous incarnations, Godzilla here keeps true to the Big G's tradition of dishing out massive pain. To bring up his fighting style, when faced the female Muto, which almost matches his size, his first offensive bout seems to focus on solely overpowering it with sheer brute strength and tenacity. Then once he learns enough about his enemy he starts aiming for weaknesses.
  • Man Bites Man: Uses his mouth and teeth quite frequently when fighting the Mutos.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Very' destructive and tending to take out whole cities in his fights
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: Taken to new levels, at least with what is confirmed onscreen. In at least some films, most notably The Return of Godzilla, using nuclear weapons on Godzilla has been suggested but never carried out. In this film it is part of Godzilla's origin: the military tried nuclear as soon as they knew of Godzilla's existence, covering up their attempts as tests known as Operation Castle (Castle Bravo being the best known, and largest, of these tests). Not only did these obviously not kill Godzilla, they appear to have inadvertently caused his mutation and given him his powers, like atomic breath. This new Godzilla might be even harder to kill than previous versions.
  • Non-Malicious Monster: He's not particularly interested in fighting with humans and goes out of his way not to fight them even when they are opening fire on him. Like Gareth said, humans are like ants to him. You don't go out of your way to stomp on every ant you see, do you?
  • Nominal Hero: The only reason he doesn't go out of his way to destroy everything in sight is not because he doesn't want to, but because he doesn't care to. Even when humans fire at him or attack him with military-grade weapons, he just shrugs off their attacks and focuses on going for his natural enemy: the Mutos.
  • No Sell: He simply doesn't even notice when humans are attacking him.
  • Odd Friendship: He seems to form one with Ford, after looking at him and Ford's timely destruction of the Muto larvae. Godzilla even goes out of his way to save Ford from the female Muto afterward.
  • Offhand Backhand: After he catches on to the male Muto's hit and run tactics, he uses his tail to do this.
  • Physical God: He is described as being like a god compared to the Mutos.
  • Post-Victory Collapse: After Godzilla flambes the female Muto's innards and rips her head off, he takes a power nap. The military think he's dead until he wakes up the following morning.
  • Reconstruction: Various elements of his design are updated to seem more plausible. His feet are rounder like a sauropod's to support his heavy weight, he has gills on the side of his neck to explain how he can live underwater, his armored hide and arms now look crocodilian. In general he's bulkier, as an animal his size and shape probably would be to support its own weight.
  • Red Baron: The film has a variation on this: after he has killed the Mutos, a news channel has the headline "King of the Monsters: Savior of Our City?" This indicates the ambivalent attitude humans have toward his Destructive Saviour status.
  • Sensory Abuse: His roar was made to be very cacophonous and dissonant along with being loud.
  • Shown Their Work: According to this news article, Gareth Edwards and his crew prepared for the monster fights by studying footage of animals fighting, so Godzilla's fighting style is based off those of real life animals such as bears and komodo dragons.
  • The Silent Bob: Excluding his famous roar, of course. Anyways, he's the most expressive Godzilla to date, displaying a lot of body language, and even makes facial expressions.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: He manages to pulls this off, usually when underwater, though occasionally he uses smoke and debris clouds.
  • Stock Monster Symbolism: The film gives him a Gaia's Vengeance characterization on top of being a radioactive mutation.
  • Stout Strength: He's more heavily built than other versions of the character, but it doesn't make him any less dangerous.
  • Supernatural Gold Eyes: The massive, radioactive, mutant King of the Monsters, has golden eyes. It also provides some distinct Color Contrast against his charcoal grey hide.
  • Super Not-Drowning Skills: Justified. For the first time, Godzilla has gills on the sides of his neck, explaining how he can live underwater.
  • Super-Persistent Predator: Godzilla tracks the Mutos from one side of the Pacific to the other.
  • Tail Slap: How Godzilla kills the male Muto, coupled with Impaled with Extreme Prejudice, since it was slammed into a skyscraper and got a support beam through its spine.
  • Time Abyss: Godzilla is suggested in the prequel comic to have survived the Permian Extinction and shifted between dormancy and active hunting across 250 million years, appearing at various points throughout human history.
  • Up to Eleven: The makers of the film promised that this would be the biggest incarnation of Godzilla yet. As this Yahoo! Movies article puts it:
    "Godzilla's always been rather large. But now he's, like, really rather large."
  • Weaksauce Weakness: His arms are very stubby compared to the rest of him. The male M.U.T.O took advantage of this a couple of times by jumping on his head and stabbing away at him with those long forelegs, with Godzilla having an extremely difficult time dislodging him since he could barely touch the top of his head. They are plenty strong, though, and he uses them to fight the female Muto.
  • Worm Sign: He creates a massive swell in the water as he swims, with his dorsal spines protruding from the top. Taken Up to Eleven when the act of landfall is preceded by a tsunami.

The Mutos, short for "Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism", are a pair of creatures that remained dormant within the fossilized corpse of a Godzillasaur buried within the earth's crust until being accidentally awakened in 1999. There are two of them: a terrestrial female Muto, and a smaller, winged male Muto. They feed off of nuclear radiation and upon regaining strength intend to unite and build a nest to rebuild their species. The organization MONARCH is responsible for their discovery and has been studying the two creatures.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: It's hard not to feel a bit sorry for the Mutos when the mother is mourning the death of her babies, especially when we see them meet and the father feeds a nuke to the mother and they nuzzle a bit before making the nest. The mother's anguished vocalizations manage to convey the message perfectly.
  • All There in the Script: The script allegedly refers to the male as "Hokmuto" and the female as "Femuto." Hokmuto gets his name from Janjira being located in Hokkaido in an earlier draft, and Femuto gets hers from being a lady monster.
  • Alternate Animal Affection: They nuzzle each other and touch noses, making beeping noises as their eyes flash towards each other.
  • Antagonist in Mourning: The female MUTO cries at the destruction off her offspring...and then sees Ford close by.
  • Anti-Villain: Not really apparent until near the end of the film. Their goal is merely to reunite with one another, have offspring, and ensue the resurgence of their species. Even with the amount of destruction they cause, they are at least sympathetic in this regard. In addition, they usually only cause destruction solely because they're so large and through the movie they act like actual animals.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: The female Muto is too heavily armoured to kill through brute force. Godzilla gets around this by forcing her jaws open and firing a torrent of atomic breath down her throat, disintegrating the Muto from inside out.
  • Battle Couple: In a sense, as they are a mated pair and manage to put up a real fight against Godzilla. One-on-one, they are severely outmatched, although the male one had the advantage of being able to fly. According to the creator commentary, this was an integral part of their design process when making them.
  • Berserk Button: The female Muto loses it after Ford blows up her eggs, and attempts to go after him after that.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: They are more or less this, though the female is arguably the bigger threat (and literally the bigger monster) as she carries with her thousands of baby monsters and is the most protective of them.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: They resemble large insects.
  • Bioluminescence Is Cool: They are black with glowing red markings.
  • Bizarre Sexual Dimorphism: Downplayed. The male has wings and much smaller manipulator arms but is relatively small in size compared to Godzilla, while the female is nearly Godzilla's size, has large manipulator arms and cannot fly. Otherwise, the two are pretty much identical in appearance. This exists in some real-life animals, like spiders.
  • Canon Foreigner: Although Toho's Godzilla franchise features plenty of giant mutant insectoid monsters, the makers of this film decided to introduce the Mutos as an original set of this sort of creature for Godzilla to fight.
  • Combat Pragmatist: They're not averse to double-teaming Godzilla or biting him and latching on.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: The flying one gets impaled on a broken building, while the larger female dies when Godzilla forces her mouth open and fires his atomic breath down her throat before ripping her head off for good measure.
  • Cry Cute: The female MUTO lets out an anguished scream when her eggs are destroyed.
  • Death from Above: The male Muto employs a hit and run strategy using its wings, and dive-bombs the boat carrying the nuclear bomb the military intended to use to kill him, the female, and Godzilla.
  • Determinator: Angry mama MUTO after realizing Ford destroyed her eggs.
  • The Dreaded: Anytime they showed up, you can bet it was a scary moment. Even when they were just shown on the news, such as the female one running through Vegas, was pretty creepy. Little wonder that the military attempted to use nukes on them, albeit in a rather unconventional way.
  • Dug Too Deep: They were awakened by a mining operation digging into the cavern where they were laying dormant.
  • Edible Ammunition: They feed on radiation and radioactive materials, so to them a nuke is more of a tasty snack than a legitimate threat.
  • Elemental Punch: One of the Mutos has an ability where it is seen storing glowing energy in its segmented forearm and slamming it into the ground to produce a burst of energy.
  • EMP: They have the ability to emit natural electromagnetic pulses. Indeed, the lights suddenly going out in the area serves as an indirect sign that they are nearby. It also makes it difficult to use many modern weapons against them, as evidenced by the scene where a bunch of fighter jets sent to take one out suddenly shut down and crash into San Francisco Bay.note  Of note, at first it seems the use this accidentally (as it seems more them trying to use the shockwave that accompanies them setting it off), but by the time of the San Francisco, the male Muto has seemed to learn to use it offensively.
  • Energy Absorption: Of the nuclear kind, with the Mutos seeing nukes as more of a pastry than a weapon of mass destruction. This becomes a problem later when the Mutos snag a live and ticking nuke under everyone's noses to feed their young.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: When the MONARCH team discovers that the two Mutos have been communicating with each other, Serizawa explains that the female Muto's egg is currently located at the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository — which is not only filled with radioactive waste (which the Mutos feed on), but also happens be located right outside Las Vegas.
  • Expy: Probably an unintentional one of Redmoon and Erabus, from the scrapped 1972 movie Godzilla vs. Redmoon.
    • Presumably of the Meganulon and Meganula from Rodan and Godzilla vs. Megaguirus. Some speculate Destoroyah as another possible inspiration. They also bear a striking resemblence to the monster from Cloverfield. Gareth Edwards states he was inspired by the Bugs from Starship Troopers and the Xenomorphs from ALIEN.
    • The male Muto has often been mistaken for Rodan itself. Some also compare it to the Heisei version of the Gyaos.
    • Its face looks a lot like Orga.
      • Femuto's face closely resembles Burtannus from the Dark Horse Godzilla series.
    • There's some Gigan there, too. Note the red Cylon eyes and the hooklike appendages.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Crossed with Eat Dirt, Cheap, as they consume radioactive material. Even a nuclear bomb is little more than a metallic pastry to them.
  • Eyelights Out: When the male Muto dies, we get a close up on his eyes to emphasize with this trope that he is dead.
  • Feed It a Bomb: Aside from them literally eating nuclear bombs, Godzilla kills the female Muto by blasting his Atomic Breath straight down her throat.
  • Fragile Speedster: The male Muto, thanks to flight and its relatively small size, is able to employ hit-and-run tactics with Godzilla but goes down instantly when Godzilla manages to get a direct hit in. This complements the Mutos' separate fighting styles, allowing the two to work together well enough to gain the advantage against Godzilla: While the male distracts Godzilla, it allows the much bigger and stronger female to attack Godzilla from behind. When Godzilla reacts to this and begins to overpower the female, the male flies around and attacks Godzilla again from behind, distracting him and repeating the cycle.
  • Fun with Acronyms: Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organisms. Once it's discovered there's more than one, it's turned into a name for their species.
  • Gas Leak Cover-Up: The Janjira incident was caused by the male Muto burrowing into the plant's core and feeding off the radiation until it grew to maturity. The surrounding area wasn't evacuated due to radiation but to hide the existence of the Muto's cocoon.
  • Giant Equals Invincible: They shrug off all bullets, tank rounds, and sea-to-ground missiles, though rifles successfully distract them more than once.
  • Giant Flyer: The male Muto has a pair of enormous wings in place of one set of legs.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: They have red glowing slits for eyes, which lack any kind of pupils. They may be heat sensors or compound eyes.
  • Going Critical: The male Muto played a major role in the Janjira disaster. A possible subversion in this case, because the story of the Janjira reactor going critical was all part of the coverup to hide their existence.
  • Headbutt of Love: Between the male and female MUTOs when they meet up. It's surprisingly adorable.
  • Hell Is That Noise: Have a listen. In context, that's what the female sounds like while building her nest in San Francisco.
  • Humans Are Insects: They are mostly indifferent to humans, although they will brush them away if they start stinging them with gunfire or roast a nest full of MUTO eggs.
  • Hybrid Monster: They have the jaws of a Graboid, the head shape and shiny black armor of a Xenomorph, the body structure of the Cloverfield Monster, Gigan's hooks and red eyes, and for the male, Megagurius-lik wings.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: The male Muto's fate. Godzilla hits the male Muto with a Tail Slap, smashing it into a building and impaling it on the structure.
  • Irony: The Male MUTO does all the things Godzilla does in Blue Oyster Cult's song Godzilla: he pulls some splitting high-tension wires down as he escapes from Janjira, helpless people on a subway train scream as he looks in on them, and he picks up a bus and throws it back down as he obtains a nuke from the military to present to his mate.
  • It Can Think:
    • They hint at it, such as when the female figures out that Brody is what killed her eggs.
    • The female MUTO seems to actively wait for the train carrying the nuclear weapons and ambush them, making use of her natural camouflage.
    • By the point of the San Francisco fight, the Mutos have learned to weaponize their EMP abilities (before primarily using the shockwave accompanying it to throw soldiers).
  • Kaiju: Two of them.
  • Last Of Its Kind: Like Godzilla, they are described as the last of a species that lived when the Earth's surface was still being heavily bombarded by radiation.
  • Mama Bear: When the female Muto realizes her nest has been blown up she immediately ditches the fight with Godzilla, and when she sees Ford nearby she puts two and two together and relentlessly chases him.
  • Meet Cute: Played with to make a Kaiju version. He-MUTO and She-MUTO meet up in San Francisco for the first time, and the male presents the female with a nuclear warhead as a courtship present. They trade it from mouth to mouth like a kiss and nuzzle each other before the female takes the bomb to fuel the nest.
  • Mighty Glacier: The female, who is terrestrial, is quite slow but is almost as strong as Godzilla himself. This complements the Muto's separate fighting styles, allowing the two to work together well enough to gain the advantage against Godzilla: While the male was distracting Godzilla, it allowed the much bigger and stronger female to attack Godzilla from behind. When Godzilla reacts to this and begins to overpower the female, the male flies around and attacks Godzilla again from behind, distracting him and repeating the cycle.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Critics have most commonly characterized them as a mix between a praying mantis and a pterosaur.
  • Man Bites Man: They both use their jaws occasionally in their fight with Godzilla. The female in particular managed to severely wound him once and toss him to the ground by biting him.
  • Monster Is a Mommy: The female Muto has hundreds of glowing orange eggs in her belly, and lays them when she meets up with the male. Their destruction distracts from their double-teaming of Godzilla.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Both MUTOs possess eight limbs total: the female has four forelegs, two hind legs, and a set of smaller arms, while the male MUTO has two forelegs, two hind legs, a pair of enormous wings, and a set of smaller arms.
  • No Name Given: The Mutos aren't given specific names, but are just referred to as "the male" and "the female" of their species.
  • Non-Indicative Name: The source of a brief joke. M.U.T.O. stands for "Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism," but as Stenz points out "it is no longer terrestrial, it is airborne."note 
  • Non-Malicious Monster: They aren't really evil, most of the destruction they cause is just due to them being so large, and through the movie they act like real animals. There are even sympathetic moments with them, such as the loving moment the couple have sharing a nuke, and the mother crying at the destruction of her nest.
  • No Sell: They are only mildly annoyed by even the heaviest ordnance the military can bring to bear.
  • Not Quite Dead: Twice. The female Muto was discovered dormant and thought to be dead after being dissected by the military, and the male Muto was electrocuted after Dr. Serizawa deemed its EMP-pulses making it be too dangerous to be kept alive. However, neither of them are dead either time.
  • Nuclear Nasty: The Muto are ancient creatures from a time when the world was intensely radioactive, and feed off radioactive material. This presents a problem when they steal a live nuclear warhead and use it in their nest at the heart of San Francisco...
  • Off with His Head!: The female Muto's fate, after Godzilla fries her neck from the inside with his radioactive breath and rips her head off.
  • Oh Crap!: When the male Muto sees Godzilla for the first time in Honolulu, he looks scared and promptly starts to flee.
  • Papa Wolf: The male MUTO is far smaller than Godzilla, yet is willing to dive-bomb the great lizard when he approaches the nest.
  • Personal Space Invader: The male Muto's tactic against Godzilla was to grab onto him, allowing the female to get an easier hit.
  • Pet the Dog: Despite their viciousness the Mutos have a surprisingly touching scene when they reunite in San Francisco, where the male Muto courts the female - using a live atomic bomb as a nuptial gift - and the two prepare to build a nest.
  • Pregnant Badass: The female MUTO was pregnant after meeting with the male, and she's a badass taking on Godzilla before and after laying her eggs.
  • Proportionately Ponderous Parasites: Their life cycle apparently involves multiple larvae infesting a Godzillasaur and pupating inside its body, similar to a Tarantula Hawk and related kinds of wasp. This gives them and Godzilla a pretty good justification for fighting beyond the fact that beating each other senseless while knocking over skyscrapers is just what kaijus do.
  • Railroad Tracks of Doom: When the female Muto attacks the USM train carrying nukes, it is set on fire and nearly crushes Ford.
  • Radiation-Immune Mutants: They are immune to radiation (and feed on it!) but they are actually natural creatures, originally from a time when radiation levels on earth were much higher. I.e. They're not "mutants".
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: They are black with glowing red markings.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: They have red glowing slits for eyes, which lack any kind of pupils. They may be heat sensors or compound eyes.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Upon witnessing her babies erupt into flames and deducing that a nearby Ford Brody did it, the female Muto gets pissed off, to say the least. She even starts directly attacking soldiers instead of doing so accidently, and once she sees the killer of her babies again, she is clearly filled with rage.
  • Sculpted Physique: They have a carapace resembling black metal. Gareth Edwards has said that their appearance was in part a Shout-Out to the xenomorphs.
  • Shock and Awe: To an extent. The Mutos are able to emit EMPs thanks to their absorbing of radiation. It doesn't directly harm organic creatures, but the force of their footsteps still creates a powerful shockwave of its own that can send humans flying.
  • Shout-Out: The male MUTO looks like Mothra or Battra and fights like Megaguirus.
  • Sinister Scythe: The Mutos have curved scythe-like legs. However, interestingly, they never use the spiked end, instead resting the leg over the ungulation when stepping or clubbing down.
  • Spaghetti Kiss: With a nuke! This is their spaghetti.
  • Stealthy Colossus: Particularly egregious in at least two instances, once when eating the submarine and once when it left a hole in the side of a mountain and was marching on Vegas in broad daylight and no one noticed until looking from the inside of the mountain.
  • Super Strength: The male Muto was able to drag Godzilla a few hundred feet.
  • Swallowed Whole: The female Muto does this to a group of soldiers on a pier, and would have done so to Ford as well had Godzilla not force-fed her his Atomic Breath.
  • Time Abyss: The MUTOs eggs laid dormant in a massive skeleton for millions of years.
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: Relatively speaking. The male MUTO is perhaps 25% the size of the female it mates with. A case of Shown Their Work, given that many arthopods, arachnids and insects display sexual dimorphism in favor of the female (read: the female of the species is normally larger than the male.)
  • To Serve Man: While their primary food source is radioactive material, the female Muto devours a squadron of soldiers positioned on a pier and would have eaten Ford had Godzilla not killed her.
  • Unholy Matrimony: Sort of. They're not quite evil, but they're still the story's deadly antagonists and they're a mated pair.
  • Unstoppable Rage: When the female M.U.T.O finds out that Ford had destroyed her eggs, she goes berserk ,rampaging through the city hunting him down, determined to kill him in revenge.
    • To emphasize it a little more, the M.U.T.Os where simply attacking the humans to get the things they needed for their nest and left them alone otherwise. But when the female M.U.T.O got pissed, she actively attacked and/or slaughtered every living human she saw while hunting Ford down. One hell of a Mama Bear she is.
  • Worm Sign: They make their presence known with an EMP field they emit, causing all electronic devices to fail within their radius.

The monster that serves as the main antagonist in the tie-in comic, Godzilla: Awakening.
  • Beware My Stinger Tail: In its dragon-like form, Shinomura's tail ends in a sharp, blade-like protrusion.
  • Canon Foreigner: Much like the Mutos, it is a reboot monster.
  • Combat Tentacles: Due to its composition, Shinomura is able to grow two tentacles, which it uses on Godzilla on Moansta Island.
  • Energy Absorption: Much like Godzilla, Hokmuto, Femuto and all the other creatures of its timeline, Shinomura is able to absorb radiation like a sponge.
  • Expy: The monster's design and abilities uses elements of Deathla (an unused Kaiju), Hedorah, and Destoroyah and a little bit of Ygramul the Many.
  • Flying Seafood Special: Looks like a giant manta ray.
  • From a Single Cell: Its body is composed of thousands of individual cells that will grow into a new Shinomura if left alone.
  • Kill It with Fire: The only way to kill it is to destroy each and every cell, the most effective way? Burn it. The nuke that was used on Godzilla in 1954 was also used to kill what was left of it.
  • Meaningful Name: Is named after Shi No' Mure which literally translates into "swarm of death". This make sense due to the fact Shinomura is really a conglomerate monster made up of smaller creatures.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Its name literally means 'swarm of death'.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Originally, Shinomura and Godzilla (and for that matter every radiovore) fled deep beneath the earth as the radiation levels receded. It was only after the bombing of Hiroshima that lured Shinomura from its hiding place.
  • Throat Light: Shinomura has a blue glow in its mouth.
  • The Worm That Walks: It consists of a mass of much smaller, single-celled organisms.

    Teaser Trailer Monster

A multi-limbed monster that appeared in the SDCC teaser trailer for the movie. Other than being an original, centipede-like monster created specifically for the reboot, no other information about this monster (including its name) was given, and it was eventually confirmed that it was not appearing in the final film, having been replaced by the Mutos.
  • Creepy Centipedes: The creature has multiple pairs of arms and an exoeskeleton-like hide, overall resembling a centipede, although its body looks vaguely reptilian as well.
  • Canon Foreigner: Only appeared in the SDCC teaser trailer, but did not appear in the final film. There is, however, a small nod to it in the form of a peculiar and brightly coloured millipede in the Janjira zone.
  • Daylight Horror: Unlike the Mutos, whose initial apparitions are all during the night, this kaiju is shown right in a bright daylight.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Has several arms with hooked claws.
  • No Name Given: None of the official materials give it a name.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: As seen in the above image, we don't get to see clearly its head or the rest of its body in the trailer, so we actually don't know how it looked when it was alive.
  • Posthumous Character: Everything we see of it is its corpse.
  • Sacrificial Lion: Is shown dead, presumably killed by Godzilla, in order to lampshade the greatest menace of the film.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: The only time audiences got to see it, it was already dead.


    Joe Brody 
Portrayed by: Bryan Cranston

The American head of the Janjira nuclear plant that melted down in 1999. Obsessed with discovering exactly what happened during the plant's meltdown.
  • A Birthday, Not a Break: The Janjira incident that resulted in the death of his wife occurred on Joe's birthday.
  • Action Survivor: He survives the first incident in the nuclear plant. But he's Killed Off for Real when the male Muto awakens.
  • Advertised Extra: Trailers for the film heavily featured him. His character is important in the beginning of the film, but is killed off pretty quickly.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: After his wife Sandra was among the deaths at the Janjira nuclear power plant when it was abruptly destroyed, he is convinced that whatever caused the disaster was a bit less "natural" than an earthquake. He spends the next 15 years trying to piece together the truth behind the tragedy. So he's unsurprisingly miffed to find out that a group called MONARCH is, indeed, covering up what actually happened.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: His obsession with his wife's death has left him more than a little nutty, but he was still right about the cover up.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: The death of his wife, which he is partially responsible for.
  • Dead Star Walking: Played by Bryan Cranston, the biggest name actor in the film, he doesn't make it past the first third.
  • Decoy Protagonist: Though he is given a lot of development early on in the film, his son is The Hero of the story as far as human characters go.
  • Determinator: Even 15 years after the incident, he hasn't given up on finding the truth.
  • Disappeared Dad: He becomes one in the emotionally absent but physically present sense after the Janjira disaster. He then becomes one in the literal sense right after he and his son Ford have finally reconciled upon the latter realizing Joe wasn't an obsessed crazyhead.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: The film sets him up as a major protagonist with an integral role in the story. Minutes after the male MUTO gets released, he LITERALLY gets a bridge dropped on him and dies without warning.
  • Fatal Family Photo: He dies roughly 20 minutes after finding an intact photo of his family in their old house.
  • I Let Gwen Stacy Die: Back in 1999, he had his wife Sandra go down to investigate the Janjira NPP's reactor in the wake of mysterious tremors. Not only did this put her in harm's way when there was a breach, he ends up having to close the blast doors on her and her team in order to keep radioactive gas from leaking into the rest of the city. His obsession with figuring out the cause of the breach that killed his wife leads to him discovering that some large, strange entity is now active in the ruins of the facility.
  • Ironic Birthday: Reversed. Joe is told of his birthday by his wife before they go off to the power plant where they work. Hell breaks loose when the plant is breached and his wife dies.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: The look on his face after his wife's death says it all. His obsession is also most likely fueled by guilt.
  • Papa Wolf: After getting arrested again, before he even demands answers, the first thing he demands is to see his son Ford, who they also captured. Just by the tone of his voice, he was both scared and mad at the thought of losing him too.
  • Parental Abandonment: It's implied that he was less than a stellar parent after his wife's death. He's still in relatively good terms with his son despite this.
  • Parental Neglect: Even before the incident at the power plant turned him into an obsessive conspiracy theorist, Joe was already unintentionally dismissive of his family, forgetting to greet his son in the morning and even that it's his own birthday today.
  • Room Full of Crazy: He has a room covered with newspaper clippings and other documents relating to his search for the truth behind the collapse of the Janjira plant that led to his wife's death. His son is understandably taken aback at all this; his father simply replies: "I don't get too many visitors".
  • Sacrificial Lion: Gets the most development early on, but is killed when the first Muto awakens.
  • "Well Done, Dad!" Guy: As a result of the death of his wife Sandra at Janjira and his subsequent development into a Properly Paranoid Conspiracy Theorist investigating what really caused the plant to collapse, he has become estranged from his son Ford, who thinks all his dad's crazy-sounding theories are just a pathetic attempt keep from moving on from that grief like he has. The fact that the first time in years Ford meets up with Joe is to retrieve him after he got arrested trying to sneak into the Janjira quarantine zone didn't help either.

    Sandra Brody 

Portrayed by: Juliette Binoche

Joe's wife, and one of the engineers at the nuclear plant where he works.
  • Death by Origin Story: She's shown with Joe and a young Ford Brody at the beginning of the film, and dies shortly afterwards. The film then jumps fifteen years later, and we're shown that Joe hasn't gotten over her death, while their son Ford has moved on, married and has a kid of his own.
  • Disposable Woman: She promises young son Ford that they'll work out a way to surprise dad Joe after work. She helps him hang the HAPPY BIRTHDAY sign for Joe before coming out to kiss Joe and wish him happy birthday (he'd forgotten in his concern over the tremors). She then dutifully follows Joe's request that her team go check the reactor. She wisely commands her team out when the tremors begin again, stops to pick up a fallen comrade, and then pulls off her mask when it no longer matters because she won't get out — just to tearfully say goodbye to the grieving and guilt-wracked husband who sent her down there in the firs place, setting him up for 15 years of obsessive guilt-fueled angst.
  • Go Out with a Smile: A tearstained and strained smile.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: She told her husband to shut the blast doors, thus dooming her and her team, in order to prevent radiation from leaking out.
  • The Lost Lenore: Joe dedicates nearly all of his attention to uncovering why she died.
  • Missing Mom: By the Janjira reactor breach.
  • Sacrificial Lamb: She dies in the first fifteen minutes of the film due to severe radiation poisoning.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: She and the scientists stuck on the wrong side of the breach doors are the first characters to die in the movie.

    Ford Brody 

Portrayed by: Aaron Taylor Johnson, CJ Adams (young)

Joe' and Sandra's only child. The primary human protagonist of the film, he is a Navy bomb tech on leave when the events of the movie began.

    Elle Brody 

Portrayed by: Elizabeth Olsen

Ford's wife and a San Francisco nurse.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Before Ford leaves for Japan to bail out his father, Elle is trying to tell him that Joe is a good man who just needs some help after he lost everything the day Janjira turned into a nuclear hotspot. Ford responds he lost everything too but got over it leading Elle to respond, "Well I can see that."
  • Distressed Damsel: Her role is basically to be in danger from the Kaiju and motivate Ford to risk his life to save her.
  • The Medic: She works as a nurse.
  • Morton's Fork: She ends up trapped on a road with a group of other people with Godzilla on one side and the winged MUTO on the other.

    Dr. Ishiro Serizawa 

Portrayed by: Ken Watanabe

The scientist in charge of the MONARCH project and an expert on Godzilla and Kaiju.
  • Admiring the Abomination: Has a quasi-religious attitude towards Godzilla, believing that he is essentially the personification of the balance of nature and the only hope humanity has of neutralizing the M.U.T.O.s, even if he has to kill people and destroy cities in the process. Admiral Stenz understandably thinks him naive for this.
  • The Bus Came Back: Dr. Serizawa, not seen since the first film, is back, being portrayed by Ken Watanabe. However, the character is a descendant instead of the original, and he's for Godzilla instead of against him.
  • Composite Character: Has the surname and world-weariness of Daisuke Serizawa, is a palaeontologist that wants to study the monsters versus killing them like Dr. Kyohei Yamane, and his insistence that Godzilla will save the day.
  • Mr. Exposition: Much of his screentime is devote to him providing backstory for Godzilla along with the Mutos, and how to potentially stop them.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: When he first sees Joe Brody being interrogated, at first he thinks the guy's a loon, but then he looks at the papers Joe had on him, and notices the patterns perfectly match the ones they're seeing now. When the US Navy picks him up, he also has them bring both Brody's along. He realizes too late that Joe had indeed predicted that something wasn't right about those readings he was examining for the last 15 years. And though his son Ford didn't have the same knowledge, he did provide enough of a clue for Serizawa to figure out that Godzilla may not be quite the bad guy as he's seen as.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Although not quite the same character, his previous incarnation in the series died preventing Godzilla from wreaking more havoc while here Serizawa is trying to convince the military the importance of Godzilla and comes out of the film with very little scrapes and bruises.
  • Thousand-Yard Stare: Acquires one in the aftermath of the male Muto's awakening.
  • Tragic Keepsake: His pocket watch, which originally belonged to his father and was broken in the Hiroshima bombing.
  • Tuckerization: His first name is a tribute to Ishiro Honda, the director of the original Godzilla and the acknowledged creator of Godzilla. Though there was also a Dr. Serizawa in the original, his first name was "Daisuke".

    Dr. Vivienne Graham 

Portrayed by: Sally Hawkins

Dr. Serizawa's assistant.
  • Admiring the Abomination: Has a quasi-religious attitude towards Godzilla, even calling him "a god, for all intents and purposes." Admiral Stenz understandably thinks her naive for this.

    Admiral William Stenz 

Portrayed by: David Strathairn

The military senior officer in charge of the operations to combat the Mutos.
  • Godzilla Threshold: He believes that utilizing nuclear weapons works as the least costly way of dealing with the MUTO. He's aware that they feed off of radiation, but believes the sheer strength of the explosion will be enough to kill them, noting that, while the H-Bomb didn't kill Godzilla in 1954, it's a firecracker in comparison to what is at their disposal six decades later.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: While he treats Godzilla as a threat for a good reason, he doesn't go out of his way like many military characters in these type of movies would and is always open to suggestions from civilian experts. Also, related to the above plan of using a nuke, he points out that they are out of other options and have to do all they can to protect the civilians on the coast, and despite that genuinely empathizes with Serizawa's perspective on the matter.
  • Underestimating Badassery: He has some doubts about Godzilla's ability to defeat the Mutos, in spite of chasing one of the Muto out of Honolulu and hardly being affected by the Navy's gunnery in San Francisco Bay.

The protagonist of the prequel comic. He is the witness of the awakening of the King of the Monsters and his first radioactive opponent.
  • Action Survivor: He survives his first encounter with Shinomura.
  • Ignored Expert: His attempts at explaining what Godzilla and Shinomura are. He narrowly avoided the Cassandra Truth trope when MONARCH arrives to witness the battle between the two monsters.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: He is modeled after the late Akihiko Hirata, who was the actor of Daisuke Serizawa in Gojira.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Implied, as he is bitter for Japan's loss in World War II.
  • "Spared by the Adaptation": He dies in 1981 rather than 1954 to die with Godzilla like Daisuke did.
  • Tragic Keepsake: He gives Ishiro his pocket watch, which stopped working since Hiroshima's bombing.