Comic Book: Godzilla Rulers Of Earth
The fifth of IDW Publishing
' series to feature Godzilla
, and the third set in the shared universe that includes Kingdom of Monsters
and Godzilla: Ongoing
, Godzilla: Rulers of Earth
picks up shortly after Godzilla: Ongoing
left off, as the reemergence of Godzilla coincides with a plot by the aliens from Ongoing
—now revealed to be the shapeshifting Cryog and the aquatic Devonians—to seize control of the planet.
Unlike its predecessors, which attempted to mix political satire with giant monster action, Rulers of Earth
aims to be a straight up comic book in the superhero vein, succeeding admirably. In addition to IDW series mainstays like Godzilla, Mothra, Rodan, and Gigan, the series also introduces a number of other Toho monsters, including Orga, Destoroyah, and Manda, and even obscure creatures like Sanda, Gaira, and Gezora. Even unpopular characters like Zilla and Jet Jaguar appear, re-imagined and improved upon. Human characters like series regular Steven Woods are also given a fair amount of screentime, though their roles are downplayed when compared to those of the monsters.
The twelve-issue series received positive reviews. A sequel is already confirmed.
Tropes appearing in this comic include:
- Action Girl: Mothra, as usual.
- Action Mom: Mothra again, whose two larvae accompany her into battle.
- Adaptational Badass: Gigan, who has his Final Wars look, his Showa Era sadism, and a level of competency displayed by neither, fighting Godzilla, MOGUERA, Jet Jaguar, and his own berserk partner, Orga, all at once and holding his own. Zilla is also far more badass here than he was in either his own film or Final Wars, withstanding multiple blows from Godzilla and even getting in a few hits of his own. And then there's Jet Jaguar, who goes from a Power Rangers reject who could barely handle Megalon to taking down Orga and Godzilla in two separate fights.
- Adorkable: Lucy Casprell.
- Animesque: Matt Frank's art style has a very anime look, this is very prevalent on the human characters. Rather fitting considering Godzilla's Japanese roots. Jeff Zornow's artwork on the other hand, not so much.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: We have attack of the several hundred foot moth, marine iguana, and squid, and that's without mentioning all the dinosaurs, aliens, etc.
- Badass: Godzilla, Mothra, Rodan, Gigan, Orga, Zilla, Jet Jaguar, Destoroyah... It'd probably be faster to list the creatures that aren't badass in one way or another.
- Badass Family: Mothra and her larvae, who show up to aid Godzilla against Destoroyah.
- Badass Normal: Commander Steven Woods.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Jet Jaguar is probably the nicest Mecha around. This doesn't stop him from curb-stomping Godzilla when the King of The Monsters attacked him after Gigan was defeated.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: The Cryog and Devonians, who eventually fall out with one another.
- The Brute: Orga to the Cryog. Titanosaurus seems to play this role to the Devonians.
- The Cameo: Megaguirus, Baragon, Gorosaurus, Kamoebas and Shockirus make short appearances throughout the comic.
- Composite Character: Zilla has its appearance from the Godzilla (1998) but is explicitly stated to be the same monster from Final Wars, although it lacks the "acidic fire breath" it had in the latter film. Baragon is also an example of this; looking like he did in GMK but having his fire-breath from Frankenstein Conquers The World.
- The Dragon: Gigan to the Cryog and Destoroyah to the Devonians.
- Enemy Mine: Godzilla, MOGUERA, and Jet Jaguar team up against Orga and the upgraded Gigan.
- Evil Counterpart: Destoroyah can both be viewed as these for Godzilla. Titanosaurus and Zilla are both neutral counterparts who happen to come into conflict with him.
- Fish People: The Devonians.
- For Halloween, I Am Going as Myself: When the Destroyah larva crash the Comic Convention, it's assumed they're people in costume right up until they start chowing down on the attendees.
- Friendship Moment: Possibly. Following their battle with Destoroyah, one of the Mothra larvae tries to play with Godzilla's tail. Godzilla turns around and glares, only to see the two larvae hide under their mother's wings to help her up. Godzilla and Mothra lock eyes, he nods, and then he heads off.
- Hero Killer: Destoroyah is in fine form - driving Zilla ashore, defeating Godzilla during their first battle, and then fighting Godzilla, Mothra, and two of Mothra's larvae at the same time.
- Horror Hunger: Orga's hunger is so extreme he tries to devour not only Godzilla, but his own partner, Gigan.
- Hot Scientist: Yumi Nagata, the person in charge of Jet Jaguar. If you were to take away her lab coat and her glasses, she'd be considered almost model material.
- Humongous Mecha: MOGUERA makes its first IDW appearance here.
- Ironic Nickname: Woods mishears a warning that Godzilla is coming and calls the new monster he's engaging "Zilla".
- It Can Think: Woods' conclusion after watching Mothra come to Godzilla's aid again, confirming for him something the audience already knows.
- Zilla is shown to be almost as smart as his son of a different universe: ducking under Godzilla's first atomic breath; digging underground in an attempt to gain an advantage over Godzilla; and when caught in a Neck Lift by Godzilla, notices the CKR attack helicopters and moves his head out of the way so Godzilla takes the brunt of the missiles.
- Kaiju: Goes without saying.
- Kill All Humans: Both Cryorg and Devonians have this goal.
- Man-Eating Plant: Biollante puts in an appearance as a Devonian monster in her second-form.
- Mythology Gag: Of course!
- Lucy's hotel room number is 1954, while a poster in the background during a meeting between her and Woods says "MUTO-54".
- Ebirah Horror Of The Deep: The number "1966" is seen multiple times in various places. Also, when we first see Godzilla underwater in the very first issue, not only are there the aforementioned Shockiras, but a sunken ship with the name "Yahlen" on the side - the name of the yacht the characters had in Ebirah Horror Of The Deep.
- In the first issue, when Chavez sees the readout on his computer of Zilla under the water, at his desk we can see a model of the Gotengo/Atragon, and among the books nearby, you can make out the titles of two of them as "Mon-Star", and "Age of the Gods", nods to two of the most important and influential books on Godzilla, written by Steve Ryfle and Guy Mariner Tucker, respectively.
- The cover of the third issue, with the Destoroyahs attacking the comic convention, is stuffed with clever nods. Among these: A man dressed as the hippie guy from "Godzilla vs. Gigan"; a man dressed as an SY-3 crew member from "Destroy All Monsters"; a woman dressed as an X Alien from "Invasion Of Astro Monster"; a model of the Super X, from "The Return Of Godzilla"; a magazine with the name "Zone Meteor", a nod to Toho's superhero TV show "Zone Fighter", from 1973, which featured cameos by Godzilla, Gigan, and King Ghidorah.
- Godzilla vs. Biollante: Sanda hits Godzilla with an oil tanker truck that has "Saradia" on it.
- Godzilla vs. Destoroyah: Godzilla tries to eat a sperm whale before it escapes, much like Godzilla Junior.
- 1998 Godzilla: The first indicator of Zilla arriving is the classic water Wormsign. While most citizens and tourists are running away after Zilla makes landfall, Lucy runs towards him with camera in hand, akin to Animal grabbing his news camera for taping in his first encounter. Zilla bursts out from underneath the streets right in front of CKR member Chavez, similar to him appearing in front of Dr. Nick Tatopoulos. Later on, when Zilla doesn't see Godzilla and thinks it's safe, the Big G bursts right through one of the skyscrapers behind Zilla in a surprise attack, which was the same thing Zilla did to three military helicopters when they thought they got him.
- Godzilla Final Wars: Godzilla sent Zilla flying into a large building before letting loose his atomic breath.
- In the end of the 10th issue, there is a ship at sea with the name "Moonlight", a nod to the Moonlight SY-3, from "Destroy All Monsters".
- Issue 11 has Baragon destroying the Arc de Triomphe in Paris after being driven to the surface by the military, essentially acting as a corrected version of the infamous Gorosaurus scene in Destroy All Monsters. This is followed by Baragon squaring off against Mecha-Godzilla, which was supposed to happen in Godzilla Vs Mecha Godzilla until he was replaced by Anguirus.
- One-Man Army: Godzilla battles Manda, Gezora and Titanosaurus on his own.
- Origins Episode: Issue #9 involves Lucy having a Flash Back to ancient Japan and witnessing a battle between King Caesar and Megalon courtesy of the Shobijin. It also serves as a Wham Episode as Lucy discovers this is not the first time the Kaiju have appeared nor was it the first time humanity interacted with them.
- Rogues Gallery: Godzilla's rogues are on display here, as usual in the IDW Comics.
- Rogues Gallery Showcase: Let's see, we have appearances from: Zilla, Gigan, Orga, Destoroyah, Titanosaurus, and other Toho monsters like Manda and Gezora, who don't normally face Godzilla but do here.
- Rogues-Gallery Transplant: Gezora, Sanda, and Gaira were not Godzilla foes in the films, but are in this comic.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Zilla quickly realizes it doesn't stand a chance against Godzilla's Atomic Breath and books it the first chance it gets.
- Sea Monster: Manda, Gezora, Titanosaurus, Zilla, and Godzilla himself.
- Shape Shifter: The Cryog.
- Size Shifter: Jet Jaguar can grow from human-sized to kaiju sized.
- Slasher Smile: Destoroyah's default face. Godzilla does something like this after he blows up a volcano in order to incinerate Biollante.
- Took a Level in Badass: Gigan's upgrades are one in-series.
- Ungrateful Bastard: After teaming up to fight Gigan and Orga, Godzilla hits Jet Jaguar with his Atomic Breath. It doesn't end well for the King of The Monsters.
- Villainous Valour: Both Gigan and Zilla display it when they choose to keep fighting despite being outgunned by larger, stronger, and in the case of Gigan, more numerous opponents. Zilla's tenacity in the face of Godzilla's overwhelming superiority actually helped to earn the big iguana some of the fans he had been lacking.
- We Can Rebuild Him: Gigan gets upgraded from his Showa appearance to his Final Wars appearance.