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Godzilla (ゴジラ, Gojira)

Portrayed By: T.J. Storm (motion capture), Andy Serkis (additional motion capture, uncredited)

Appears In: Godzilla | Godzilla: Awakening (tie-in comic) | Kong: Skull Island (cameo) | Godzilla: Aftershock (tie-in comic) | Godzilla: King of the Monsters | Godzilla vs. Kong | Godzilla Dominion (tie-in comic)

Species: Giant prehistoric amphibious reptile | "Titanus Gojira"

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"The top of the primordial ecosystem. A god, for all intents and purposes."

"Gojira may be the answer. I believe he's here to restore balance. He can defeat them."
Dr. Ishiro Serizawa

The last known living member of a species of gigantic amphibious beasts 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-emerged in 2014, having a score to settle with the MUTOs.

In 2019, the humans find him at the bottom of the ocean wanting to be left alone... until he is called to battle against his greatest nemesis, Ghidorah.

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 other versions of the character (named after the company producing the MonsterVerse films, Legendary Pictures).

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For the Toho versions of Godzilla, go here.


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    A - M 
  • Accidental Hero:
    • In the first movie, his actions in the final act saved countless lives; killing the M.U.T.O.s 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.
    • In the sequel, he's saved Monarch so many times it's as if it's intentional while fighting King Ghidorah.
  • Achilles' Heel: As mentioned below in Attack Its Weak Point, the gills on Godzilla's neck are the weakest part of his body, meaning he is very vulnerable to strangulation/strikes to the neck.
    • Godzilla: He yelps in pain when human missiles (which he otherwise barely registers) strike his gills and the MUTOs specifically target his head and neck when fighting him.
    • Godzilla: King of the Monsters: Ghidorah chokes Godzilla out by constricting his neck like an anaconda. Likewise, Godzilla is very nearly killed by the oxygen destroyer.
    • Godzilla vs. Kong: Kong frequently gains the upper hand in close-quarters combat because his longer arms allow him to hold and attack Godzilla's neck. Mecha Godzilla, likewise, dominates the fight almost immediately by grabbing Godzilla by the neck and smashing him around.
  • Acrofatic: Contrary to his very bulky appearance and typical lumbering gait, Godzilla King of the Monsters shows that when he wants to, Godzilla is more than capable of moving quickly, actually running across a city to confront Ghidorah. He's also very fast and agile when in water, capable of swimming from Hawaii to California in a couple of hours, easily outpacing his military escort, and of outmaneuvering King Ghidorah, actually taking off one of the monstrosity's heads when the two engage in underwater combat.
  • Achilles in His Tent: The Oxygen Destroyer took a disastrous toll on Godzilla and forced him to reside in an ancient temple to rejuvenate and adapt, but doing that could take years. Thankfully Serizawa was able to quickly restore and empower Godzilla with a nuke.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • In preexisting Godzilla incarnations, except for Godzilla 2000, the Nuclear Pulse was more of a sidearm than anything else, usually stunning or otherwise briefly incapacitating but never being the source of decisive damage. When this Godzilla finally lets loose with them, each is a blazing detonation capable of piecemeal immolating King Ghidorah, who is capable of regenerating From a Single Cell.
    • Godzilla met his unambiguous demise in his very first film by the Oxygen Destroyer, with his successors merely being either Legacy Characters or reboots. In King of the Monsters, they hit him with the Oxygen Destroyer partway through the film, and he survives. He's weakened by it, of course, but the problem isn't even that it mortally wounded him—Monarch agents assert that he'll eventually recover—the problem is that recovering from it will take a lot of time (which they don't have, considering Ghidorah is, at this point, well on his way to destroying all of humanity).
    • In Godzilla vs. Destoroyah, Godzilla's heart became a nuclear reactor which threatened to end all life on the planet were it to blow up. The damage to his body was so visible it left glowing cracks in his flesh, with fans coining this burnt new form "Burning Godzilla." In the original Toho films, Godzilla attaining this burning form indicated that he was on the verge of dying. In King of the Monsters, he accesses this form as a Super Mode, and uses it to utterly annihilate Ghidorah, emerging from the carnage completely fine. That said, the danger of Godzilla exploding from too much radiation is brought up, and the only reason Godzilla is able to survive is that Mothra manages to stabilize him, which seems to be the reason his Burning form does not destroy him.
    • Double Subverted with his Atomic Breath. In Godzilla (2014) it had a much more vaporous appearance similar to the Showa era and it was often pointed out how small and unimpressive it seemed in comparison to Godzilla's size. Then it was later revealed to be the MUTOs' EMP abilities weakening its effectiveness, and sure enough in King of the Monsters, his Atomic Breath is shown to have a much more laser-like appearance when at full strength (while still noticeably gaseous and not a full-on beam) and some of the greatest reach and power seen thus far, being able to knock King Ghidorah flat on his ass when Godzilla's still several city blocks away in the Boston Harbor. In Godzilla vs. Kong, he demonstrates one of the single most impressive displays of atomic breath strength in the franchise short of absolutely broken moments like shooting a planet-sized asteroid or a micro-black hole. When he senses Kong and the humans have activated the Hollow Earth energy, he charges up and shoots the ground, targetting the Hollow Earth. His breath easily blasts a hole through the Earth's crust into the Hollow Earth through millions of tonnes of rock.
  • 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 M.U.T.O.s posing a threat while maintaining his Destructive Saviour status per his previous incarnations. And while he does start attacking humans in Godzilla vs. Kong, it's only because Apex is trying to replace him with Mechagodzilla, who is controlled via the brain of King Ghidorah, making his actions very understandable. Furthermore, Godzilla focuses his rage solely on Apex, and limits casualties when possible.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: His relationship with Mothra in the sequel. In the Toho continuities, Godzilla often butts heads with Mothra, and in some cases where he's always the antagonist, Mothra would always win against him. In this continuity, there's no animosity between the two, and she helps Godzilla fight against King Ghidorah. Her death causes the radioactive god to mourn for her, and unleash one hell of a fury on his ancient nemesis. The King of Monsters himself also thanks to both humankind and Dr. Serizawa by using his power as an Alpha to keep all Titans away from human settlements, while their powers repair environmental damage on a global scale, bringing humans renewable resources and super foods.
  • Age Lift: Godzilla was already gargantuan for quite some time before he got nuked in this continuity, which was the inciting incident for him becoming massive in the Toho continuity. Furthermore, the shape of his feet indicates that his species, stated in the Awakening comic to be an amphibious reptile from the Permian, came from an earlier period of time than the Toho version.
  • All Myths Are True: The Titans generally have this, but the Godzilla: King of the Monsters novelization suggests Cipactli from Aztec myth, in particular, was probably inspired by Godzilla and his battles against other kaiju.
  • Always a Bigger Fish: He's generally portrayed this way, being an apex predator Kaiju who fights against other Kaiju that might threaten his dominance, and by proxy defends humanity (whom he acts indifferent towards until King of the Monsters). This is foreshadowed in the first film by Serizawa's expressed beliefs that Godzilla exists to restore natural balance, and notably, Played Straight when Godzilla kills the female MUTO just before it can kill Ford Brody. Zig-Zagged in King of the Monsters when Godzilla numerous times indirectly saves the human characters from Ghidorah, who is Godzilla's Evil Counterpart amongst the Kaiju. It also seemingly causes humans' opinions towards Godzilla to improve over time in either film.
  • Ancient Astronauts: All those sea dragons in medieval texts are in fact him and other members of his species, as the opening credits show of the 2014 film, and they were written about dating back to prehistoric cave paintings.
  • Anti-Hero:
    • It's not clear whether he hunts the M.U.T.O.s because he wants to stop their destruction, or simply because their two species are natural enemies; the M.U.T.O.s are parasites while Godzilla is an apex predator. Ultimately his goals end up being in humanity's favor, and he seems to actually be defending Ford Brody on purpose, though this isn't clear. 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 (for example, even a real-life creature of his size would most likely go around buildings than through them if they had a choice, which is what he does). 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.
    • In Godzilla: King of the Monsters, he spends a lot of time-saving the main characters (albeit by accident) during his scraps with Ghidorah. Once he becomes the new ruler of the Titans after defeating Ghidorah, he proves even more benevolent, guiding the Titans to repair ecological damage to the planet and steer clear of human settlements.
  • Anti-Villain: In Godzilla vs. Kong, it's revealed that he's been targeting and destroying Apex facilities (and naturally causing damage to the civilian-inhabited population centers where they're based) not because he's turned against humanity, so much as because he can sense Mechagodzilla's components at those locations emitting a signal which he recognizes as a rival alpha and/or because he can sense Ghidorah's remains are still alive; and he's actively trying to hunt and eliminate this threat. Considering the nature of this threat, and the fact Apex Cybernetics were obscenely stupid enough to do such a thing after the events of King of the Monsters, it's very understandable why Godzilla is so pissed (if anything, it's impressive that he doesn't get more pissed at humanity than he is).
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • King Ghidorah. Godzilla and Ghidorah have an incredibly personal hatred for one another, and their fight scenes in Godzilla: King of the Monsters are some of the most brutal in the series. Godzilla hates Ghidorah so much that he intentionally kills the humans that work for Apex and attacks their research sites to prevent them from creating Mechagodzilla, as the latter is controlled via Ghidorah's brain. In turn, Mechagodzilla makes a point of brutalizing Godzilla the minute the Robeast can get to do so.
    • Also to MUTO Prime aka Jinshin-Mushi. It is the one responsible for killing most of Godzilla’s species, including Dagon via implanting its offspring into them and it’s strongly implied that it is the reason why Godzilla is the last of his kind.
    • Somewhat downplayed with Kong. It's indicated that his race and Godzilla's have a very old rivalry, with both being Alpha Titans competing for dominance over the other Titans, and the novelization explains that Godzilla's kind drove Kong's (as well as their Iwi worshippers) out of the Hollow Earth. However, since Kong is a natural member of the Earth's order, Godzilla does not have the intense personal grudge against him he does against Ghidorah which leads him to spare Kong after defeating him.
  • Art Evolution: As per tradition, the Big G gets a makeover for each film:
    • Godzilla's design was updated for the 2014 film. The most noticeable changes are gills on his neck, round, sauropod-like feet, and a much longer tail with a pointed tip. 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.
    • For Godzilla: King of the Monsters his design was updated again, possessing larger dorsal spines as an homage to the original 1954 Godzilla, larger feet with clawed toes, and a shorter tail with a rounded tip. He's also taller, standing around 119 meters tall.
    • Godzilla vs. Kong shows his design has been updated to sport a smaller head and thicker legs, giving him a more bottom-heavy appearance to help contrast him with the more top-heavy Kong.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: Gets his title "King of the Monsters" through defeating the M.U.T.O.s. He regains his status as the Alpha Titan after defeating the usurper Alpha, King Ghidorah.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: His gills are quite sensitive and seem to be his most vulnerable area. On the flip side, exploiting weakness is a major part of his fighting style. He force-fed an Atomic blast into the M.U.T.O.'s unprotected belly. In the Sequel, he drags King Ghidorah underwater to neutralize the alien's airborne and lightning advantage.
  • Awakening the Sleeping Giant: He's viewed by Serizawa as the embodiment of nature's ability to restore balance to itself when that balance is disrupted, and he's furthermore described by Gareth Edwards as only ever emerging to make things right when the world's natural balance goes wrong. Although he seemingly doesn't fight directly on humanity's behalf, whenever he shows up, he shifts the balance so that humanity's efforts against hostile Kaiju are no longer borderline futile, becoming a crucial ally by proxy.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning:
    • After his triumph against the M.U.T.O., the American media bestows the well-earned title of "King of the Monsters" upon him.
    • Gets another one after defeating Ghidorah, with all the Titans gathering around him and bowing to him as one.
  • Badass in Charge: Firmly established as this regarding the other Titans at the end of the second film after defeating King Ghidorah when they surround him and he simply gives a Death Glare and they all bow to him.
  • Badass in Distress: He ends up in this position once at the climax of every film.
    • In Godzilla (2014), he's visibly losing the fight against the two MUTOs once they start tag-teaming against him, until the HALO team blowing up the MUTOs' nest causes the female to abandon fighting Godzilla, enabling Godzilla to solely face down the male MUTO with a regained advantage.
    • In Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), the tide of the Final Battle gradually turns against him due to an implicit combination of Ghidorah empowering itself using the Boston power grid and Godzilla's Phlebotinum Overdose beginning to weaken him. It leads to Ghidorah killing Mothra and Ghidorahquickly wearing Godzilla down to the point that Godzilla is helpless when Ghidorah begins inflicting Vampiric Draining him. This forces the Russell family to use the ORCA's alpha frequency to distract Ghidorah and make it abandon Godzilla to pursue the signal, giving Godzilla ample time to reach his Super Mode before Ghidorah could have fully drained him.
    • In Godzilla vs. Kong, he ends up faring poorly during the Final Battle against Mechagodzilla, due to his previous battle against Kong and him blasting a tunnel halfway through the planet to the Hollow Earth both severely weakening him. Mechagodzilla more or less beats Godzilla, and Godzilla is saved at the last second from execution by Kong's intervention.
  • Bash Brothers: With his Queen, Mothra in KOTM (more like Bash King & Queen) against Ghidorah & with Kong in the fourth film. By the end, the two earn each other's respects, put aside their rivalry, and while weakened & tired, absolutely thrash Mecha Godzilla
  • Beam Spam: He rarely uses his Atomic Breath, preferably ending his fights at melee range and resorting to his breath when he needs to weaken or finish off his opponent. The only time he spams his Atomic Breath was when King Ghidorah awakens. Considering how dangerous Ghidorah is, he has a reason to use it multiple times. Played much straighter in Godzilla vs. Kong where he is much more beam happy.
  • Bears Are Bad News: His stance, design, and fighting style are based on 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. This really gets emphasized in Godzilla vs. Kong when Godzilla gets serious: he lowers himself onto his arms and legs, charges at the ape like a bear, and proceeds to absolutely massacre Kong in the fight that follows.
  • Been There, Shaped History: The various nuclear tests conducted in the Pacific Proving Grounds during The '50s were actually secret attempts to kill Godzilla with increasingly more powerful bombs.
  • 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.
  • Benevolent Monsters: This incarnation is notably like a real animal in that he's more likely to navigate around manmade obstacles like skyscrapers than he is to just smash through them, and is truly indifferent to humans at large. Gareth Edwards even invoked this, saying humans are like ants to Godzilla and humans don't go out of their way to squash every ant they see. The Creative Closing Credits in King of the Monsters even indicate Godzilla is actively safeguarding human cities against the other newly-awakened Kaiju, possibly due to Serizawa's Heroic Sacrifice to him.
  • Berserk Button:
    • It would seem King Ghidorah is something that genuinely pisses him off. The first time he's seen in King of the Monsters is when he acts uncharacteristically angry, something Monarch notes has never happened before. This happened because the ORCA is using a frequency very similar to his old foe. Likewise, in Godzilla vs. Kong Godzilla is enraged not simply by Mechagodzilla activating, but by any time he senses Ghidorah's still living remains affecting the robot.
    • In Godzilla vs. Kong, anyone that attempts to utilize the Hollow Earth energy enrages Godzilla to the point of firing a really powerful Atomic Breath right at the Earth's core where the Hollow Earth is at. This is likely due to Godzilla remembering how Kong's species used the energy to war against his species in ancient times.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Several Toho Godzillas have done feats no other monster in kaiju history is capable of doing as much as they do. This Godzilla literally shoots a hole into the surface of the Hollow Earth from Hong Kong of all places while seeking Mechagodzilla.
  • Big Damn Heroes:
    • The M.U.T.O.s 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 M.U.T.O's nest, the female attempts to kill him. Cue atomic breath, allowing Ford to escape. Then later, when Ford is on the boat with the nuclear warhead, the female M.U.T.O. tries to kill him again, but Godzilla sneaks up from behind and pulls her back.
    • In King of the Monsters, he darn near abuses this trope. His ability to track down Ghidorah and to take shortcuts through tunnels in the Hollow Earth means he repeatedly arrives just in time to save human characters from annihilation (not that this is necessarily his goal each time, he just wants to stop Ghidorah from rampaging in general).
  • Big Entrance: He pulls this off with his Feet-First Introduction in the 2014 film. A MUTO at an airport causes a long chain reaction of exploding aircraft, and the last explosion dissipates, revealing a Giant Foot of Stomping that manages to dwarf the entire MUTO.
  • 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. In King of the Monsters, it's noted that his unique rivalry with Ghidorah meant he was the only Titan on Earth capable of stopping him.
  • Bioluminescence Is Cool: His dorsal plates begin to light up blue, just like they do in the TOHO films, but from the tail up, a la Godzilla: The Series. Furthermore, rather than the plates glowing a solid blue, whorls and lines are what emit the blue glow.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: The novelization of Godzilla vs. Kong reveals that Godzilla's Atomic Breath isn't actually radiation, but an unknown form of energy whose signature is an almost-direct match to that of the "life force" energy suffusing Hollow Earth. Furthermore, he can metabolize radiation and radioactive materials into this Hollow Earth energy. According to Iwi mythology, this is due to Godzilla's ancestors eating a star and becoming corrupted by its power.
  • Blood Knight: Godzilla relishes a good fight, and can even be seen smiling at certain times, such as when he first shows up at the Honolulu airport, when he activates his burning Godzilla form against King Ghidorah, and, most notably, when he manages to tag Kong with his atomic breath (he laughs at that one). He only ever loses this streak when his opponent manages to piss him off (like Kong) or when he's fighting Ghidorah, who he holds in special contempt.
  • Born Winner: Godzilla doesn't just seem to be the last of his kind, but abnormally powerful for his kind. While he needs help to actually kill it, the MUTO Prime easily killed another member of his species, Dagon, but has to run away from him and repeatedly hit and run him to wear him down before actually being willing to face him in a straight fight.
  • Breath Weapon: Godzilla has his atomic breath, 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, with the 2014 film's novelization describing it as essentially being composed of flammable gas with Godzilla ignites with a bio-electric spark — though this is retconned by the Godzilla vs. Kong novelization to it being an unknown form of energy suffusing the Hollow Earth. Godzilla uses it as the coup de grâce against the female MUTO three times, but thanks to her thick armor it's only when he force-feeds it to her that it has any real effect. It's also hinted in the film (confirmed in the novelization) that the MUTOs' EMP ability was weakening the atomic breath's effectiveness, since in King of the Monsters and Godzilla vs. Kong it regains the thick laser appearance.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: The grumpy, belligerent Brooding Boy to Mothra's pacifistic, healing Gentle Girl.
  • But Now I Must Go: This incarnation of Godzilla is (whether he's conscious of it or not) devoted to maintaining and upholding the natural order by destroying rival Titans who threaten it, but not only is his mere presence a threat to human life if he sticks around, Godzilla: Dominion also confirms that he suffers from The Chains of Commanding. In most of his appearances (sans King of the Monsters), once the hostile Kaiju threatening the world has been killed, Godzilla returns to the sea and implicitly doesn't approach humanity again until a new threat surfaces.
  • Came Back Strong: Subverted on him "dying" though. He was put out of commission by the Oxygen Destroyer and had to be revitalized with a nuke, that boosted his power immeasurably — making him capable of taking on King Ghidorah on equal footing and indeed having him on the ropes before Rodan's arrival.
  • The Cameo: Makes one via cave painting in the post-credits scene of Kong: Skull Island.
  • The Chains of Commanding: At least as much as a giant kaiju can be allowed. The graphic novel Dominion completely follows Godzilla's point of view. While he's not leading a monster army he is keeping monsters from doing harm, like Scylla wanting to open a nuclear submarine, or watching a battle between Behemoth and Amhuluk. It is noted it is tiring and not helping was that his home had to be destroyed in King of the Monsters.
  • Character Development: Surprisingly for a giant prehistoric lizard. His first appearance depicts him as utterly uncaring for human safety, in the wake of gargantuan battles against other Titans. But after the Heroic Sacrifice of Dr. Serizawa, Godzilla develops some sense of protectiveness towards humanity as a whole. Because of this, he ends up actively directing the Titans under his command away from human civilization, and has them harness their abilities in a manner that benefits humans.
  • Charged Attack: While the Showa and Heisei incarnations of Godzilla blast their Atomic Breaths almost instantly the Millennium Godzillas only had about several seconds more or less to fully let out their beams, it takes this version around 18 seconds to fully power up his Breath Weapon. A variant occurs in Godzilla Vs. Kong when he supercharges a blast in order to penetrate the planet's crust to reach Hollow Earth.
  • The Chosen One: It's emphasized that Godzilla is the rightful ruler of the Titans since Ghidorah is an alien whose very presence violates the natural order Godzilla keeps in check.
  • 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.
    • In his next movie, Godzilla ambushes Ghidorah in the ocean and drags the dragon under the water, at one point biting Ghidorah's left head off. All indications are he has a decided advantage against Ghidorah under the sea, thanks to how ill-equipped Ghidorah is to fight there compared to Godzilla. If the Oxygen Destroyer hadn't hit then Godzilla could have beaten the other monster himself.
    • In the next movie he displays throughout the first fight with Kong. The two meet at sea and the ape is still chained to a ship. Rather than get on the ship and face Kong, Godzilla flips it over and tries to drown him. After Kong pushes Godzilla off the aircraft carrier, Godzilla destroys the carrier and attempts to drag Kong deep underwater. Later, in their fight in Hong Kong, Godzilla will fight literally tooth and nail to win, in contrast to Kong’s seeming refusal to use dirty tactics.
  • Composite Character: As of King of the Monsters Godzilla now contains references to nearly every incarnation before him (sans Shin Godzilla and Earth Godzilla.) He was hit by an Oxygen Destroyer just like the '54 Goji, and lived. Like the Showa Godzilla, he's a benevolent if Destructive Savior that fights other, far worse monsters up close and personal and is willing to team up with other monsters like Mothra. He's still a force of nature like the Heisei Godzilla, but he's not the Big Bad and is more like an anti-hero at worst. He also has a super mode that resembles the Heisei Godzilla's Burning form, but it won't kill him. Like most of the Millennium Godzillas he has sharp, bladed spines that can be weaponized. When he hit the Male Muto with a Tail Slap one of its legs was sliced off by the spines on top of Godzilla's tail. And, Like Final Wars Godzilla, he's also the most powerful monster on Earth, only beaten by a monster that isn't from Earth.
  • 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." The promotional material for the next movie clarifies that Gojira is his species, with this particular Gojira being named Godzilla.
  • 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 damage 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 similar to Heisei Godzilla in personality (as in an aggressive fighter), he does not even attack the humans who fire at him because he's more focused on defeating the M.U.T.O.s. Previous incarnations will annihilate tank and ship units if they inconvenience him. This guy? He dives under ship units and does not bother attacking the tank units on the Golden Gate Bridge. And let's not get into details about Shin Godzilla. It also extends to his Meaningful Name, "God Incarnate". Every Godzilla before and after him bears the title of God of Destruction. He surprisingly doesn't, as despite the destruction he causes, whether intentional or not, he is Gaia's God incarnate, set to restore balance, whether against the MUTOs or Ghidorah.
  • Covered with Scars: He is covered in old battle scars, highlighting not only his age but also showing that he's been "maintaining the balance" for quite a while.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), as Burning Godzilla he dishes the single most one-sided of the movie against Ghidorah, whose Breath Weapon no longer has any effect on Godzilla. Godzilla's nuclear pulse on the flipside leaves Ghidorah incinerated, only leaving his middle left, which is helpless when Godzilla burns it away.
    • In Godzilla vs. Kong, his second battle with Kong starts out on roughly even footing, but as it progresses, Godzilla stops holding back altogether and he quickly subsumes Kong to the point the latter is left near death.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Zig-zagged. While he is potentially as dangerous to humanity as the M.U.T.O.s (if not more so), he also serves as a Destructive Savior. Notably, 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 weapon 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. This is largely dropped in the sequel where he's quite happy to throw it out as an opening gambit, though that could be because he's now facing Ghidorah.
  • David vs. Goliath: He ends up being the David to Ghidorah's Goliath in Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), and to MechaGodzilla's Goliath in the climax of Godzilla vs. Kong. Both these Titans are not only physically significantly larger than Godzilla but also are respectively equipped with a Super Power Lottery against him.
    • His fight with Kong has him as the Goliath to Kong's David. Godzilla is bigger, stronger, and has his Breath Weapon, which Kong has no way of defending against. When the two square off in close quarters on the aircraft carrier, Godzilla knocks Kong on his back and is only stopped from blasting him by a jet hitting him, which gave Kong the chance to push him off the carrier. When the two fight in Hong Kong, Kong now having his axe, Godzilla again proves the more powerful one with Kong flat out running when Godzilla resorts to his Beam Spam. And it turns out Godzilla was going easy on Kong because when he has enough he nearly beats him to death.
  • Death Glare:
    • In Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), when he was re-energized by a nuke and fires his Atomic Breath into the skies, he turns his attention on a submarine and sets his sights on Mark (again) and sports a stern, unamused, and highly irritated expression which is likely because of how he almost "died" from the Oxygen Destroyer as well as having his temple (which was pretty much his home) blown up. However, he drops this after seemingly locking eyes with Mark.
    • After he kills King Ghidorah, he shoots down Rodan's threatening display with a glare and a snort. This makes Rodan swiftly submit to Godzilla as the reigning Alpha — the other Titans who formerly submitted to Ghidorah do the same as Godzilla wheels his Death Glare over them, one by one.
    • At the end of his and Kong's first battle in Godzilla vs. Kong, Godzilla wading in the water shoots the tired and defiant King of the Primates a particularly impressive and intimidating Death Glare — Kong returns it in kind.
  • 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 M.U.T.O., he pauses to catch his breath, and once the female's dead he outright collapses.
  • Despair Event Horizon: He hits the edge of it in the second film according to Word Of God. Apparently, he came to the Hollow Earth after being severely crippled by the Oxygen Destroyer not to heal, but to die.
  • Destructive Savior:
    • Even though he's mankind's only hope against the M.U.T.O.s (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 savior of the human race, making him a literal Destructive Savior.
    • King of the Monsters ramps this up on a city-wide scale as his final battle with King Ghidorah is in Boston. By the time Godzilla destroys what's left of Ghidorah, Boston is reduced to a nuclear wasteland. However, this is still preferable to the result of Ghidorah being allowed to run rampant.
  • Determinator: Chases the M.U.T.O.s 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 1954 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 M.U.T.O.s. The first time occurs when he's buried by a skyscraper after crushing the male M.U.T.O. against it. The second time occurs when he literally collapses to the ground after killing the female M.U.T.O. and stays there well into the next day before waking up.
    • And again in King of the Monsters, after the US military tries to use the Oxygen Destroyer to take out Rodan and Ghidorah and hit Godzilla. Ghidorah survives completely unharmed because he's an alien, but the Monarch crew in the Argo track Godzilla for a few minutes, after which they lose his life signs and declare him dead. But as it turns out, he had managed to retreat to his ancient hideout, which has high enough radiation levels to slowly revive him even from Oxygen Destruction.
  • Diving Save: Rams into King Ghidorah unintentionally saving Mark and the rest of the crew in the Argo.
  • Does Not Know His Own Strength: When Godzilla finally snaps and brings Kong down, his actions make it clear he's trying to dominate Kong, not kill him. Once it's clear Kong has no more fight left in him, Godzilla backs down and refocuses on Mechagodzilla. The problem is that Godzilla is so strong that even without aiming for the kill, he's done so much damage that Kong collapses and starts going into cardiac arrest.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": Seemingly somewhat downplayed in his case. His species' scientific name as of Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) is Titanus Gojira, but Serizawa is the only one who calls this individual Gojira while everyone else instead calls him Godzilla. The other Titanus Gojira specimen whose skeleton appeared in the opening of Godzilla (2014) is never referred to by the name Godzilla, and is instead described in Godzilla: Aftershock as a "Godzilla-type" or "Godzilla-like".
  • The Dreaded: Godzilla might not be actively hostile towards humans, but that still doesn't mean he isn't feared. Ilene feared having Kong leave Skull Island, even though he was growing too large for his habitat because Godzilla will come after Kong and try to defeat and/or kill him. Her concern is well-founded because Godzilla nearly kills Kong in both encounters. After Godzilla appears hostile, the ships transporting Kong make a point of avoiding any of the waters Godzilla is known to travel through, which still isn't enough because Godzilla actively hunts Kong down the moment he senses Kong in the wild.
  • 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 M.U.T.O. in San Francisco.
    • In King of the Monsters, he literally comes out of fucking nowhere by attacking King Ghidorah chasing the Argo.
  • Early Installment Character Design Difference: His design has changed in each successive film after Godzilla (2014) (see Art Evolution), with his King of the Monsters design featuring maple leaf-like dorsal spines that actually look more like classical depictions of Godzilla.
  • 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. This is thoughtfully confirmed in King of the Monsters, where a nuclear detonation about 30 feet from his face not only revives him from near-death, it supercharges him enough to be able to destroy Ghidorah just by releasing his built up radiation.
  • 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.
    • A stronger example in King of the Monsters, as both Godzilla and the humans joined forces as King Ghidorah became their common and most dangerous enemy. By the final battle in Boston, he bore witness to several aircraft flying past him, and clearly acknowledged his comparatively tiny allies in the fight to come. It is implied that Ghidorah's defeat strengthened Godzilla's interest and protection of humanity.
  • Energy Absorption: He feeds on radiation like all Titans, and King of the Monsters confirms he can absorb the blasts of nuclear warheads at face value (although this causes a Phlebotinum Overdose).
  • 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 an extremely derived dinosauriform...
    • This is complicated by promotional images taken of his skeleton and that of his deceased kin, Dagon, which shows that he lacks a temporal fenestra, which makes him an anapsid. The only living anapsids are turtles, making them Godzilla's closest living relatives.
  • 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.
  • Eye Awaken:
  • Eye Color Change: His Supernatural Gold Eyes were changed to a reddish-orange sclera that goes along with his Art Evolution in King of the Monsters.
  • Faster Than They Look: The Big G may look overly bulky, slow, and massive overall. In Godzilla (2014) he kept getting pounced by the Male MUTO numerous times and was highly mobile and evasive for him to get a good hit directly. Out of irritation Godzilla instantly takes him out with a strike of his tail into a building so quickly, that not even the winged beast was able to dodge his attack in time.
    • When he returns to challenge King Ghidorah in the finale, he takes his time walking at a slow pace by letting the military open fire at him. Immediately after that, he suddenly breaks into an earthshaking sprint by charging at his nemesis without even stopping at all.
  • Fearsome Foot: His arrival at Honolulu airport is announced by his enormous foot slamming down in front of the terminal window, turning what had been a loud, chaotic scene into shocked silence. Ladies and gentlemen, the King has reclaimed his throne.
  • Feeling Their Age: He's definitely been around for eons no doubt. There are two signs of it in the movie displaying his age. After impaling the male MUTO with building debris he hunches down a little to recuperate from presumably hours of tireless fighting. Near the end of the movie where civilians are being rescued, everyone including Serizawa and Vivienne assumed that he's dead but in reality, he was just sleeping albeit motionless which is Truth in Television. The way how elderly people take naps almost gives off the implication that they're dead but thankfully aren't.
  • Feet-First Introduction: Done to truly awe-inspiring effect in the 2014 film, when in the midst of the chaotic airport scene, the camera pans from the male MUTO past a line of exploding planes before a truly enormous scaly foot slams down into the frame, instantly shocking everyone in the airport into silence. It also serves to emphasize Godzilla's size by showing how big his foot alone is compared to the massive MUTO.
  • Finishing Stomp: In Aftershock, he finishes the MUTO Prime off by crushing its head with a stomp while it's stunned from his Nuclear Pulse. In King of the Monsters, after Burning Godzilla's first thermonuclear blasts obliterate King Ghidorah's wings and side-heads, Godzilla delivers the final, largest blast which obliterates Ghidorah's entire body except for the middle head by crushing Ghidorah's chest under his foot.
    • Repeats this during his final battle with Kong. Godzilla however only pins Kong down, and after roaring in his face, lets him live.
  • Fire/Water Juxtaposition: In keeping with Gareth Edwards' stated "Man vs. Nature" theme, and to emphasize just how small and helpless the humans are, one scene in the 2014 film shows soldiers firing off tiny-looking flares in front of the massive Godzilla, who is still dripping with many gallons of seawater.
  • Foil: To Ghidorah, his Evil Counterpart. They're both massive Alpha Titans, but whereas Godzilla is ultimately a guardian of the Earth (if not the humans on it) who represents nature and maintains its order, Ghidorah is an Omnicidal Maniac who defies Earth's natural order as an alien and who actively seeks to bring the planet's destruction. Ghidorah has not just the capacity to annihilate human civilization, but the intent to. Godzilla is an amphibious walker while Ghidorah's wings allow him to fly. They both have light-like beam attacks at their disposal, but Godzilla's are blue, while Ghidorah's are yellow. They have Healing Factors, but Ghidorah's is much faster. Both are passingly identified with religious idols, but Godzilla is compared with God, while Ghidorah is compared to the other guy.
  • 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 M.U.T.O.s.
  • Genius Bruiser: Godzilla is rather crafty for a giant reptile. After seeing how his atomic breath only had a minor effect on the female M.U.T.O., he switched to grabbing her head and firing it down her throat in a "Kiss of Death" until it decapitated her. As for the male M.U.T.O., 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 whip that knocked the male out of the air into a skyscraper, impaling it on a protruding beam.
    • After seeing that Mechagodzilla can No-Sell his attacks, Godzilla is smart enough to recall that Kong's axe can absorb energy, and boosts it with his atomic breath so that the ape can take the machine down.
  • Gentle Giant: Downplayed. He doesn't show any malicious intent toward humans and never attacks them even when they're the ones attacking him first, but he also doesn't concern himself with minimizing human casualties or collateral damages to their cities if they get caught up in the battles between him and his kaiju rivals. Gets played more straight in the second half of Godzilla: King of the Monsters, when after Serizawa sacrifices himself to save Godzilla's life and Monarch's forces fight alongside him in his final battle against Ghidorah, Godzilla uses his power as the Alpha of the Titans to not only to keep the Titans away from human settlements but also to seemingly establish a closer and more progressive relationship between both species.
  • Giant Equals Invincible:
  • 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.
  • Glad He's on Our Side: "Good thing he's on our side," says Rick Stanton after Godzilla kills Ghidorah. The response from Dr. Chen? "For now."
  • 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 on the similar "smiles" of many real-life reptiles.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: King of the Monsters gives him these when using his Atomic Breath.
    • When he sensed the ORCA's sounds at Castle Bravo, Godzilla lights up not only his dorsal fins but his eyes also glow a bright blue as a form of intimidation. Deep beneath the waves with those glowing eyes, it makes him look like an unfathomable supernatural beast.
    • For his final Big Damn Heroes moment after firing his Atomic Breath at King Ghidorah, he lands in Boston with his eyes furiously glowing wanting to settle the score once again.
  • God of Evil: The novelization of Godzilla vs. Kong sheds some light on the Iwi culture, which — as regaled by Jia — fears Godzilla and his species as an evil Draconic Abomination called the "Zo-zla-halawa" that drove the Kongs and Iwi out of the Long Ago Below (their word for the Hollow Earth).
  • Godzilla Threshold: He seems to have one of his own—the signature Atomic Breath, which he only uses once in Awakening and three times in the film's climax. The fact that he employs it far more often in fights with Ghidorah suggests that he (rightly) perceives his three-headed nemesis as a much more dire threat.
  • Good All Along:
    • In his debut in Godzilla (2014), his morality is for most of the film understandably ambiguous to both the audience and most of the human cast, with promotional materials further suggesting he'd be an antagonistic force like the original incarnation and would be no less dangerous than the MUTOs. By the film's end, this Godzilla incarnation is more or less cemented as an Anti-Hero after he fights the MUTOs to the death per his nature when the military's attempt to kill the Kaiju has dramatically failed, he at one point almost seems to be deliberately saving Ford Brody from being killed by the MUTOs after they briefly noticed each-other during the battle, and he furthermore leaves the ruins of San Francisco and the city's survivors in peace while he returns to the sea at the film's end.
    • In Godzilla vs. Kong, most of humanity assumes Godzilla has made a Face–Heel Turn against them when he commits a series of patterned attacks upon Apex Cybernetics facilities and their surroundings. It turns out that the reason Godzilla is attacking those facilities is that he's looking to root out and destroy the remains of Ghidorah which Apex is using to create MechaGodzilla before his three-headed alien Arch-Enemy can rise again in a new form. Considering the massive threat Ghidorah posed in King of the Monsters, this revelation makes Godzilla's measures quite justified and his wrath against the humans very understandable.
  • Good Is Not Soft: This incarnation is much more benevolent when compared to his predecessors, as he never hurts humans directly and his actions help them survive. In fact, this Godzilla is capable of gratitude, which is best shown in the end credits where he repays Dr. Serizawa's Heroic Sacrifice by using his authority as King of the Monsters to repair environmental damage and keep other Titans away from human civilization. That being said, Godzilla isn't merciful towards his foes. He impaled the Male MUTO on a building with his tail, blasted the Female MUTO's head off with his atomic breath, stomped the Prime MUTO's head to death, and burned Ghidorah to a crisp before chowing down on and vaporizing the alien dragon's surviving head with the atomic breath.
    • Godzilla has absolutely no qualms with causing massive collateral damage and deaths in his attacks on the Apex facilities. Given that's he's actually searching for the still-living remains of Ghidorah, it's not that surprising.
  • The Good King: After he defeats Ghidorah and reclaims his throne, he's indicated to now be actively directing the other Titans to act in ways beneficial to the world, while prohibiting them from attacking any human populations. Notably, humans come to view him as their savior as well. Dominion, which is entirely told from his POV, expands on this, showing him actively protecting humans from hostile Titans, as well as preventing the others from getting into destructive clashes with each other.
  • 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.
  • Graceful in Their Element: He's generally slow and lumbering on land but he's very fast in the water. He uses this to his advantage during his second fight with Ghidorah when he drags him in the water, negating Ghidorah's strengths while staying in his own element, he was winning till the military intervenes.
  • Grin of Audacity: Like with Glasgow Grin above he's not actually grinning per se, it's more or less how his mouth is shaped like this. Although his expression after finding the male Muto looked rather... unsettling almost as if he's about to enjoy beating him. When King Ghidorah fruitlessly blasts him with all three of his Gravity Beams in his Super Mode, if you look closely it looks as if he's sporting a defined satisfied smirk which shows that he knows his enemy is done for. Gets another one after hitting Kong in mid-air with his atomic breath, and this one is much less ambiguous.
  • Grumpy Old Man: Having lived through the past several eons with open eyes rather than hibernating like his peers, Godzilla is not only very, very old but in many respects has an attitude that's more in line with this trope than his usual one. He more or less shambles through the world without much concern for the humans he steps over and constantly displays irritation rather than anger at the people shooting at him with military-grade weapons. Facing off with Ghidorah is pretty much the only time he goes past this and is closer to his traditional Unstoppable Rage.
  • Having a Blast:
    • Aftershock reveals he's capable of performing the Nuclear Pulse, which he uses to stun the MUTO Prime long enough to kill it with a Finishing Stomp.
    • When he becomes Burning Godzilla, his Nuclear Pulse is upgraded to the point of basically becoming a supercharged nuclear bomb, allowing him to incinerate Ghidorah and kill him once and for all.
  • Healing Factor: While not as strong as some incarnations of the character (near death damages can require years to recover from unless he is given a major boost of energy), this Godzilla does have strong regenerative abilities (in one instance getting his dorsal plates blasted off only to regrow them even larger than they were before). Furthermore, it is by healing he adapts to various changes in the environment, types of foes he faces, etc. enabling him to have outlived the rest of his species by an extreme amount and become the most powerful of the Earth titans. He basically can evolve by healing.
  • Heal It with Fire: After Godzilla is on death's door after having the Oxygen Destroyer used on him, he retreats to his home base, which is in a subterranean volcano with such high radiation levels that it could kill a human in seconds. Monarch then takes it further when they decide that it isn't going to heal him fast enough, and deliver him an Adrenalin shot.
  • 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 M.U.T.O.s, 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.
  • The Hero: The main protagonist of the Godzilla movies who is Earth's savior when it's invaded by other Kaiju.
  • Hero Antagonist: Why he opposes Kong in Godzilla vs. Kong. Both monsters are descended from an ancient rivalry between their own respective species in The Great Off Screen War with an unknown victor in Hollow Earth. However, Godzilla appears to know about it once he shoots a hole into the surface from Hong Kong to exactly where Kong is. as Kong refuses to bow to him, Godzilla lets him live since he's only concerned with MechaGodzilla.
  • Hero on Hiatus: Gets hit by the Oxygen Destroyer, but it doesn't kill him in the second act of King of the Monsters. The main characters then decide to revive him with a nuke to bring him back into action.
  • Heroic Build: Because of his increased activity for the past 5 years, Godzilla doesn't seem to have that barrel-chested physique he had in the last film and instead looks more jacked and buffed up.
  • 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. Happens again when he becomes Burning Godzilla.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: He's feared by humans for his huge size and potential for destruction, and because the humans don't know much to tell him apart from other monsters who actually are malicious and invasive in nature such as the MUTOs or Ghidorah.
    • In the first film, he arrives in San Francisco to battle the MUTOs. He carefully tries to pass through the Golden Gate Bridge without causing any human casualties, but all the humans see is a giant monster that could crush them like ants. When Godzilla's spikes move the boats, the U.S. Navy fire upon him even though Godzilla is clearly not attacking them, causing Godzilla to lash out when his vulnerable gills are struck and crash through the bridge splitting it into two pieces.
    • In King of the Monsters, it's implied Godzilla is a more controversial figure in humanity's eyes than the first film's ending suggested; as on top of public opinion heavily demanding all the Titans be killed off, humans are apparently actively trying to locate and track Godzilla, and Mark Russell, in particular, wants Godzilla dead because of the damage in San Francisco. Once the Oxygen Destroyer fatally injuring Godzilla leaves Ghidorah free to rampage on human cities while enslaving other monsters to aid it in decimating the planet's biosphere, Monarch and all branches of the military ally as part of a joint effort to revive and aid Godzilla so he can take their planet back from Ghidorah. The Creative Closing Credits imply that Godzilla is now being viewed in a more positive light by humanity at large.
    • And in Godzilla vs. Kong, Godzilla is quickly labelled as having made a Face–Heel Turn when he commits a string of patterned attacks against Apex Cybernetics facilities, with no-one except the three-man Team Godzilla caring to actually find out what changed that provoked Godzilla. As it turns out, the reason Godzilla is attacking is that he's tracking and trying to find and destroy the partly-conscious remnants of Ghidorah which Apex are using in MechaGodzilla's construction, which pretty much makes the measures Godzilla takes and his lack of softness for Apex highly justified.
  • Homefield Advantage: When he crossed paths with King Ghidorah a second time, he lunges and brings him into the ocean where he's likely comfortable fighting him in his domain. He had an easier time fighting his nemesis and even bites off Ghidorah's left head, and was seemingly winning... Until the military decided it was a perfect time to use the Oxygen Destroyer in an attempt to rid humanity of both monsters.
    • During his first fight with Kong at sea, Godzilla is at a clear advantage in the water and after the initial struggle, he opts to simply drag Kong underwater and drown him, and were it not for the military's depth charges, would've killed the ape then and there.
  • Holding Back the Phlebotinum: Whenever Big Daddy G manages to catch his enemy in the water, he immediately turns it into a Curb-Stomp Battle and nearly drowns them, but this of course would bring the movie to an anticlimactic and premature end, so there are always nearby humans who intervene for one reason or another.
  • Humans Need Aliens: It's made quite clear in every film that Godzilla appears in that despite being a bit of a regional Destructive Savior, he is the best and only effective line of defense that the human race has on their side against the more hostile Titans when they pose a threat. Whereas Kong specifically protects Skull Island's regional ecosystem, Godzilla protects the world on a global scale due to the entire planet being his territory. The consequences of the military almost killing Godzilla in King of the Monsters are dire and almost spelled the end of the world.
  • Implacable Man: He proves to be this in his pursuit of whatever malevolent Kaiju has prompted him to emerge.
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: In his second battle against Kong, Godzilla was actually holding back for much of it, but when the ape tests him too many times, the Big G goes all out and shows just how vicious a giant fire-breathing lizard can be by beating Kong so badly, he leaves him near-death.
  • I Owe You My Life: A downplayed example. While he was merely indifferent to humans at, his intimidation display towards the humans after his revival played off as a Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!, a non-verbal way of scolding them for hurting him with the Oxygen Destroyer. But it is clear from his facial language minutes later that he acknowledged that humans (through Serizawa's sacrifice) saved him. Sometime after the end of King of the Monsters, he prevented the Titans from harming the humans and they instead benefited the global ecosystem that in turn benefitted them. He even made a surprise appearance to an Ocean Liner with absolutely no sign of fear or violence from the humans.
    • This is implied to be at least part of the reason why Godzilla opts to no longer pursue or battle Kong, (despite being a competitor for Alpha) after the latter saves him from Mechagodzilla.
  • 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.s. 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.s. He's only walking fast to humans because his strides are so long in comparison.
  • In a Single Bound: As King Ghidorah sadistically flies after the Argo with numerous humans inside of it, Godzilla literally jumps at the chance, by lunging out of the ocean (with his 99,634-ton body) and collides into him while he was airborne. Godzilla must've been swimming at ridiculous speeds to use both his mass and momentum, just to knock Ghidorah into the depths.
  • Informed Ability: One of the designers explained that he's able to swing his tail, around supersonic speeds. While it's never brought up by the characters In-Universe, that could partially explain why he's able to traverse through the oceans so rapidly.
  • Irony: A giant prehistoric monster whose Meaningful Name means "God Incarnate", but does not own the title of God of Destruction, like his Japanese counterparts. That title goes to Rodan.
  • It Can Think: As is frequently the case, he very much gives the impression of being more intelligent than a simple animal. During his fights with the MUTOs he clearly baits the male in to get him into tail-slamming range. After he's knocked down a collapsing tower, he seems to pause and regard Brody. He also seems to have learned that his weakened atomic breath can't pierce the female's skin and instead shoots it straight down her throat. In King of the Monsters he's constantly adjusting his methods to match Ghidorah and frequently reacts to events in an extremely human way. He also seems to have gained some respect for humans, regarding the Monarch team without incident and according to the credits, actively managing the kaiju so they avoid human settlements.
  • It's Personal: He seems to treat his feud with Ghidorah this way, especially when they charge at each other. Becomes much more personal after Ghidorah kills Mothra, who is Godzilla's loyal ally. Godzilla gives a mournful roar when she dies, and seems incredibly furious when he becomes Burning Godzilla to brutally annihilate Ghidorah.
  • It's Raining Men: Downplayed in King of the Monsters when Ghidorah constricts and lifts Godzilla above the troposphere, then drops him into a Rocketless Reentry. While Godzilla does survive the fall, it's admittedly nothing short of astounding that anything (especially a creature as large as him) could survive a fall from that height.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold:
    • He comes off as the Godzilla-lizard equivalent of a Grumpy Old Man and has no qualms about leveling a city he's fighting in. However, he's solely on humanity's side and will protect the Earth from any threat.
    • He's also capable of gratitude. The end credits of KOTM show he goes out of his way to keep the other Titans from attacking human cities after seeing Serizawa sacrifice his own life to help Godzilla regain his strength.
    • Despite being the one who instigates the fight with Kong in the first place, he spares Kong's life after defeating him, albeit when Kong was so beaten up he would have died anyway. After the two defeat Mechagodzilla they part on peaceful terms.
  • The Juggernaut: As per usual, he is nearly indestructible, even surviving a nuclear blast before 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.
    • Godzilla vs. Kong highlights just how terrifying he can be. When he attacks the ships carrying Kong, none of them can slow him down him, and since they are fighting at sea Kong has no chance against him. Godzilla only leaves because the humans make it look like they have given up. In the second fight, even though Kong has gained the axe his species used in their war with Godzilla's, Godzilla still emerges the winner when he gets serious and destroys Kong.
  • Just Desserts: Inflicts it on Ghidorah, immolating most of his body with Nuclear Pulses before finishing him off with a blast of his Atomic Breath in the process of munching his last head.
  • Kaiju: The most famous giant monster of all.
  • Klingon Promotion: How does he become alpha of the Titans? Killing the last one.
  • Kraken and Leviathan: An ancient, prehistoric Sea Monster whose species evolved in the Permian period, who is considered a personification of nature's wrath and borders on an Eldritch Abomination at times. He's been seen by various ancient cultures, but he lay dormant for millennia until he was awakened in The '40s indirectly by the atomic bomb (as revealed in Awakening), and even afterward he only emerges from the ocean depths to do battle on behalf of the Earth's natural order when another Kaiju threatens that order. It's even somewhat lampshaded in the 2014 film, where he's about the size of a Navy battleship, and the dorsal spines on his tail alone easily dwarf the gunships in the San Francisco bay. Interestingly, while Godzilla does have mortal enemies in other Kaiju, none of them so far have been marine like him. Also interesting to note, though he may have convergently influenced the folklore, there are two other marine Titans in the MonsterVerse who are called Kraken and Leviathan respectively.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Downplayed due to the circusmtances, but in Godzilla vs. Kong he goes out of his way to antagonize Kong and nearly kills him despite Kong not having an interest in the fight. Once Mechagodzilla awakens, Godzilla's injuries from his fight with Kong leave him vulnerable enough that he ends up beaten to near-death and is only saved by Kong getting convinced by Jia to do so.
  • 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.
  • Leitmotif: He has three. The original Godzilla March and theme by Akira Ifukube which are given a newer take by Bear McCreary, and his 2014 theme.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: The look he gives the male M.U.T.O. before tail-whipping it to death screams this.
    • In KOTM, after getting powered up by Mothra’s sacrifice, he promptly uses it to vaporize King Ghidorah.
    • In Godzilla vs. Kong he gets fed up with Kong getting in his way and proceeds to absolutely maul him.
  • Light Liege, Dark Defender: Inverted—he and Mothra are in the perfect position to be this, Mothra being the wise but delicate high queen who is literally associated with light and Godzilla being the Grumpy Old Man earth guardian, but she consistently seems to be the one trying to protect him, up to the point of self-sacrifice.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Godzilla is enormous, near-indestructible, and, as seen in his final battle with Ghidorah in Boston as he charges towards the latter, quite fast.
    • According to one of the ORCA clips from the Monarch site, it's stated that his swimming speed is around 40 knots. In one of the animation tests for Godzilla: King of the Monsters his actual top speed on land was clocked in at around 424.6 MPH.
  • Lightning Reveal: Done for him during the HALO jump scene in Godzilla (2014).
  • Logical Weakness:
    • His arms are relatively short compared to the rest of his body. 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. Not unlike a Tyrannosaurus rex, however, they are plenty strong — being connected to his massive pectoral muscles — and he uses them to fight the female M.U.T.O. quite effectively.
    • According to the novelization, his Atomic Breath works via a bio-electric spark igniting flammable vapors in his neck, and the express evolutionary function of the MUTOs' EMP is snuffing the spark out so Godzilla struggles to use his breath.
    • Also, his Atomic Breath requires him to actually breathe out the flames. This means that he's at a disadvantage against Mechagodzilla, as even without his power advantage over Godzilla, the machine doesn't have to breathe.
  • Lord of the Ocean: He's a crocodile-like aquatic saurian alpha predator (and the first incarnation of Godzilla to possess visible gills) and a Top God, who seemingly dwells in the world's oceans when a threat to himself or nature's balance doesn't spur him to action. He's also of course capable of both contemplative calm and ferociously bringing down the wrath of a god on those who cross him. Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) in particular leans on this characterization, showing Godzilla making his lair in the Underwater Ruins of an Eldritch Ocean Abyss; and the four headliner kaiju of that movie form a loose Four-Element Ensemble with Godzilla himself representing water. Godzilla: Dominion shows that Godzilla essentially considers his natural elements around him an extension of himself.
  • Made of Iron: Godzilla has shown time and again to be quite a tough, old lizard.
    • 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 M.U.T.O.s put him in any mortal danger. If you know your Godzilla, this is to be expected.
    • He survives the Oxygen Destroyer meant to kill him and Ghidorah. However, it physically drains him than outright kill him.
    • King Ghidorah hoists him into the upper stratosphere combined, with his mass and gravity makes him fall a hell of a lot faster (while igniting in the process) and crashes onto a building. He possibly received internal bleeding and was unable to move but was still breathing after that.
    • Kong lodging an axe into Godzilla does little besides making him mad and prompt him to yank the ax out.
    • Despite the brutal pounding he receives from Mechagodzilla, he still has the strength and energy to aid Kong in destroying the mechanical monstrosity.
    • By the end of Godzilla vs. Kong, after his fight with Kong, the brutal beating he receives from Mechagodzilla and clearly physically exhausted, Godzilla still has the energy to stand and regard Kong as an equal before returning to the sea. Quite a far cry from the ending of the first film where he collapsed from exhaustion after dealing with the MUTOs and spending several hours unconscious.
  • Making a Splash: For his grand entrance in Godzilla (2014) his landfall upon entering Hawaii caused an enormous flash flood likely killing thousands of civilians, as a result of his gigantic size.
  • Male Might, Female Finesse: Played With in regards to his relationship with Mothra in King of the Monsters. They're both front-line combatants, but whereas Mothra relies somewhat on Hit-and-Run Tactics against Ghidorah due to being more nimble but more fragile, Godzilla is known for using a more up-close-and-personal, bear-like fighting style and often enduring quite a bit of physical punishment.
  • Man Bites Man: Uses his mouth and teeth quite frequently when fighting the M.U.T.O.s, Ghidorah, and Kong. This is in contrast to past incarnations; the Showa Godzilla preferred hand-to-hand fighting, the Heisei Godzilla stayed at a distance and engaged primarily with his atomic breath (but could get physical if necessary), and the Millennium Godzilla would switch between melee and ranged combat depending on the situation.
  • Man on Fire: Burning Godzilla not only generates heat, but he's also so hot everything surrounding him catches fire, steel melts and flames erupt beneath his feet with each step.
  • Meaningful Look:
    • In the 2014 film, a skyscraper falls onto Godzilla after he's killed the male MUTO and he locks eyes with Ford. Godzilla gives the awestruck Ford an exhausted but calm look, as if he's thanking Ford for saving his life earlier and acknowledging that they have both been through a lot the past few days.
    • When he's crippled and near-dead in the Hollow Earth, Godzilla notices Serizawa approaching his head and gives him a direct meaningful look, before Serizawa perishes in a Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Meaningful Name: According to Shin Godzilla, Godzilla (or Gojira) officially means "God incarnate". Considering how he depicted as such by Serizawa and Graham, 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 with the female M.U.T.O., 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.
  • Mighty Roar: A mighty and glorious one.
  • Mutual Kill: Subverted in the 2014 film. After sustaining quite a beating from the MUTOs and killing them both, once the last one's dead, Godzilla collapses from exhaustion and is believed dead the next day. Then it turns out he's Not Quite Dead.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • In Godzilla vs. Destoroyah, Godzilla's nuclear-powered heart begins to give out to the point where burning, molten scars have formed all over his body. By the end of the film, he imbues the rest of his power upon his son, who takes over his father's place as King of the Monsters. In King of the Monsters, Mothra sacrifices herself in the fight against Ghidorah and imbues her power to Godzilla. He then takes on his "burning form" and uses his new Super Mode to decimate Ghidorah, cementing his place as the Alpha to the rest of the Titans. It also evokes both Rodan's sacrifice and giving Godzilla his spiral atomic breath in Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II and Mothra Taking the Bullet for an ally from Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack!, only with Mothra dying, Godzilla being the one protected, and Ghidorah as the one firing.
    • To save millions of lives, Dr. Serizawa makes a Heroic Sacrifice by locating Godzilla under the ocean, and detonate a man-made superweapon at his location. The difference is that in the original film, it was to defeat Godzilla with the Oxygen Destroyer. In King of the Monsters, it's to save him with a nuclear warhead.
    • At the beginning of the Boston battle when Ghidorah's right head was approaching him, the Big G actually did a parry that smacked him away similar to blocking an attack in boxing. This could also be seen as a throwback to the Showa Godzilla's method of hand-to-hand in the 70s movies since he practically fights by using his fists more often than not, unlike in the early 60s films where he would usually Beam Spam and Tail Slap his enemies.

    N - Y 
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: This version of Godzilla is partially modeled after a crocodile, and tends to act like one at his most sinister. His absolutely vicious assault on Kong during Godzilla vs. Kong has him crawl around like a cross between a crocodile and a bear once he gets sufficiently enraged at the giant ape.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Slightly Downplayed in Godzilla vs. Kong. When he tracks Ghidorah's signal to Hong Kong, him sensing the Hollow Earth's core energy being harvested prompts him to immediately blast open a passage straight to the Hollow Earth — this act enrages Kong into battling Godzilla, which not only gives Apex Cybernetics adequate time to activate Mechagodzilla with the Hollow Earth energy (which also causes Ghidorah's remnant consciousness to reawaken and hijack Mechagodzilla's psionic link), but it also leaves Kong unable to fight and Godzilla physically exhausted when the Ghidorah-controlled Mechagodzilla emerges. As it stands, had Godzilla focused entirely on finding Mechagodzilla instead of going out of his way to attack Kong even when the latter had no interest in fighting him, he could've likely destroyed Mechagodzilla before it could go online.
  • 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 became aware of Godzilla's existence, covering up their attempts to kill him 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, but they also 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.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown:
    • Unleashes one to King Ghidorah in his Super Mode at the end of their final battle.
    • After Kong manages to land a few good hits on him, Godzilla counterattacks, and quickly and easily overpowers the ape, mauling him with his claws and teeth, and later pinning him underfoot. Unlike Ghidorah, though, Godzilla spares Kong.
    • On the receiving end of this from the activated Mechagodzilla while exhausted from fighting Kong. None of Godzilla's attacks can even dent the machine and he's nearly killed multiple times over and only survives because Jia convinces Kong to save him.
  • Nominal Hero: This incarnation of Godzilla starts off disinterested in humanity, with much of his focus squarely on any Titan who would dare issue him a challenge. As such, he demonstrates throughout most of his introductory film that, while he doesn't go out of his way to cause rampant destruction to human cities, he isn't at all concerned if he does. This changes as of King of the Monsters, where Godzilla actively directs other Titans away from human territories. It's implied that Dr. Serizawa's Heroic Sacrifice led Godzilla to feel some sense of gratitude towards humanity as a whole.
  • Non-Malicious Monster: He's not particularly interested in fighting with humans and goes out of his way to not fight them even when they are opening fire on him. As 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?
    • In Godzilla vs. Kong it's actually Averted with his rivalry with Kong, as Godzilla eventually shows a more sadistic side as he delivers a beatdown on his rival, despite being the one to start the fight and only spares him after dislocating his shoulder and leaving him with mortal injuries.
  • No Range Like Point-Blank Range: He does this in Godzilla (2014) to the female MUTO. By forcing her jaws open and firing an Atomic Breath attack straight down her throat.
  • No-Sell: For the most part, he simply doesn't even notice when humans are attacking him. In King of the Monsters, he no-sells Ghidorah's Gravity Beams after reaching his Fire Mode.
  • Not Drawn to Scale: As is usually the case in the franchise, Godzilla's size is... flexible. He's officially listed in marketing materials as around 350 feet tall. In the first film, he is frequently 2-3x that against known objects and in some shots and other marketing material including the poster more resembles a mountain. Notably, in King of the Monsters he's knowingly made larger than he was in the previous film.
  • Not Quite Dead: A heroic example, twice.
    • In the first film, he collapses from exhaustion after killing both the MUTOs and appears to be dead among the ruins of San Francisco the next day. Then his nostrils move and the Eye Awaken comes, revealing he was merely sleeping to recuperate.
    • In King of the Monsters, his vitals fade and seemingly flatline after he's hit by the Oxygen Destroyer, which in turn enables Ghidorah to take over rule of the Earth unopposed and begin instigating his apocalypse. When Mothra arrives and calls out to Godzilla, Monarch detects his bio-acoustics replying to her, confirming that he's seriously wounded but is still alive.
  • Nuclear Nasty: Averted with this incarnation, as he existed long before the Pacific nuclear tests, which actually attempted to kill him. He is however a creature whose species naturally feeds on radiation due to evolving in a time when the Earth's surface was much more radioactive.
  • Nuke 'em: Godzilla has been nuked before in an attempt to kill him, but it's implied it made him stronger. He gets nuked again, but this time by Serizawa to revive him but it made him a bit too powerful to the point he nearly becomes a literal walking nuclear bomb. Mothra was able to contain his radiation levels and uses his full capacity on King Ghidorah.
  • OOC Is Serious Business:
    • In the first film, Godzilla was rather calm in his pursuit of the MUTOs, only getting serious when confronting them directly. The instant he senses Ghidorah (even before the dragon has a chance at awakening), he's constantly showing extreme agitation, flashing his spines and swimming very erratically around the Monarch base. During his fights with his nemesis, he's exceptionally vicious, spamming the atomic breath far more times than he has previously.
    • A massive plot point in Godzilla vs. Kong is Godzilla going on a massive destruction spree against the world, behavior vastly unbecoming of his portrayal in previous films in this series, leading to Madison going out to discover what has motivated this switch. Which leads to her group to discover that his attacks are calculated against Apex Cybernetics and he's just as good as he's ever been, but afraid due to King Ghidorah STILL being alive as the MechaGodzilla and still influencing the "battle for dominance" from the last film.
  • Odd Friendship:
    • With Mothra. When she's killed in front of him, he lets out a mournful howl and collapses onto the ground, nearly beaten. It was clarified prior that Godzilla and Mothra seem to have a symbiotic, cross-species relationship, with them both being referred to as King of the Monsters and Queen of the Monsters respectfully.
    • He seems to form one with Ford, after looking at him and Ford's timely destruction of the M.U.T.O. nest. Godzilla even goes out of his way to save Ford from the female M.U.T.O. afterward.
  • Offhand Backhand: After he catches on to the male M.U.T.O's hit-and-run tactics, he uses his tail to do this.
  • Oh, Crap!: Even the King can be surprised.
    • King of the Monsters Godzilla does a visible double-take and takes a step back moments before Ghidorah performs a lightning based Beam Spam after absorbing Boston's power.
    • Godzilla vs. Kong Gets this when Mechagodzilla completely overpowers his atomic breath, critically injuring him and leaving him dead to rights.
  • Older Hero vs. Younger Villain: Half the time. Examples include the MUTO pair who are only fifteen years old when Godzilla kills them, and debatably Shinomura who regenerates From a Single Cell. Likely averted with Jinshin-Mushi and Ghidorah, who are implied to be roughly as old as Godzilla or potentially even older (particularly Ghidorah).
  • Old Soldier: 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.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Very destructive and tend to take out whole cities in his fights. Taken Up to Eleven in King of the Monsters where he becomes Burning Godzilla and basically nukes Boston three times over with his supercharged Nuclear Pulses.
  • Phlebotinum Overdose: It King of the Monsters, feeding him the full blast of a nuclear warhead to heal him works "a little too well" and puts him on an Exact Time to Failure before he "explodes like an atom bomb". Only Mothra's actions save him.
  • Physical God: He is described as being like a god compared to the M.U.T.O.s. Fitting, considering his name officially means "God Incarnate".
    • A mural from the second movie shows him being outright worshiped by an ancient civilization.
  • Post-Victory Collapse: After Godzilla incinerates 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.
  • Power Limiter: His dorsal spines actually reserve his radioactive energy supply for his immense power.
  • Power Up Full Color Change: As a result of the Energy Donation from Mothra's power, aside from scorching everything in sight his entire body glows a blazing red accompanied by Volcanic Veins.
  • Prehensile Tail: Displays this ability in Godzilla vs. Kong wrapping Kong in his tail, immobilizing him as he tries to drown the ape.
  • Punch! Punch! Punch! Uh Oh...: At the end of King of the Monsters, he in his Burning Godzilla form is the opponent and Ghidorah the participant. Ghidorah desperately attempts to fend him off by blasting him at close range with all three Gravity Beams — Burning Godzilla not only No-Sells it, but almost seems to give Ghidorah a Slasher Smile in response, before he delivers the next three phases of Ghidorah's Rasputinian Death.
  • Reconstruction:
    • Various elements of his design are updated to seem more plausible. His feet are rounder like a sauropod's to support his tremendous 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, and his body is hunched slightly forward as a bipedal dinosaur would to maintain balance. In general, he's bulkier, as an animal his size and shape probably would be to support its own weight. In King of the Monsters, he has a more muscular build, which is to be expected for a creature that has taken on a much more active lifestyle after the events of the 2014 film.
    • This version of Godzilla overall balances out the alternatively destructive and heroic nature of his original Japanese incarnations into a more cohesive whole. Like his more negative interpretations, Godzilla is still a force of destruction awakened by nuclear activity, driven by sheer instinct and causing massive destruction in his wake. But through his Adaptational Heroism, and his eagerness to combat any Titan seeking to challenge him, he comes to represent a natural balancing force that restores order through destruction. He becomes a more heroic figure towards humanity after Dr. Serizawa performs a Heroic Sacrifice to rejuvenate him for the third round against Ghidorah, reflecting how nature reacts kindly to people when they take care of it.
  • Rage Breaking Point: Godzilla is no pushover on the best of days, but in Godzilla vs. Kong, he hits this point during his Hong Kong battle against Kong when Kong successfully deals a significant blow to him. It becomes evident for the rest of the battle that Godzilla was to some extent holding back previously and now all bets are off as he brutally curb-stomps Kong. Probably exacerbating the Rage-Breaking Point was the stress Godzilla was already likely under throughout the film before this, frantically pursuing Mechagodzilla/Ghidorah's signal all over the world and being unable to find and destroy it every time he got close.
  • Red Baron: The film has a variation on this: after he has killed the M.U.T.O.s, 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.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: In Godzilla: King of the Monsters his golden-colored eyes were replaced with blood orange eyes instead, which honestly makes him a lot more fierce and pissed off. Especially whenever he sees King Ghidorah every time.
  • Red Herring: A meta example. Every trailer for Godzilla (2014) made him out to be the primary threat, but in fact, the MUTOs are the real bad guys.
  • Red Is Violent: The king shows no mercy in his Super Mode not after what happened to Mothra, instead of physically beating King Ghidorah to death he unleashes several Nuclear Pulses that destroyed the alien hydra's wings, side heads, and brutally stomped on his chest and blew up the rest of his body (almost).
  • Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated: As hinted in the 2014 film's opening, and explicitly confirmed in Godzilla: Awakening; Godzilla was presumed dead after he and Shinomura were nuked, although Serizawa's father and others suspected he might've survived. They get their answer in 2014.
  • Riding into the Sunset: Played With in the 2014 film's ending. Godzilla is described as something of a last samurai who exists to restore balance to nature when its more chaotic creatures get out of line. Upon recovering from his Post-Victory Collapse after killing the MUTOs, Godzilla leaves the ruins of San Francisco and returns to the sea; accompanied by a triumphant score and by the cheers of the survivors in San Francisco who hail him as their savior. Albeit in full morning daylight rather than at dawn or dusk.
  • Roar Before Beating: He gives a massive one in the 2014 film which is so awesome that CinemaSins immediately knocked two sin points off for the scene.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: After Mothra gives her life to protect Godzilla from Ghidorah's attack, he lets out a mournful cry over her death. Once he's back on his feet and becomes Burning Godzilla, he's noticeably pissed off and doesn't give Ghidorah a single second to recover.
  • Rocketless Reentry: Ghidorah forcibly inflicts this on Godzilla by constricting him and lifting him into the upper atmosphere, then dropping him, turning Godzilla into a fireball which violently crashes back to Earth with nothing but his body's Super Toughness to save him from burning to death. Although Godzilla survives, it certainly did anything but lessen his injuries.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: After reclaiming his position as the planet's Alpha from Ghidorah and cowing the other Titans into submission, Godzilla becomes much more proactive in the world. He's implied to act as a control over the Titans, not only encouraging them to behave as part of the ecosystem but also driving them away from human settlements.
  • Running on All Fours: He does this during his second fight with Kong during Godzilla vs. Kong after taking a serious beating from his opponent.
  • Save This Person, Save the World: Played Straight in Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), where him being seemingly killed (actually crippled) enables Ghidorah to start its Apocalypse How on the planet, and he's considered to be necessary to defeating Ghidorah, leading the humans to revive him and to distract Ghidorah from killing Godzilla in the Final Battle to give Godzilla as much of an advantage as possible.
  • Scars Are Forever: He is covered in Keloid scars, a reference to the Hiroshima victims (Godzilla was of course inspired by the US nuclear bombings on Hiroshima and Nagasaki).
  • Sensory Abuse: His roar was made to be very cacophonous and dissonant along with being loud.
  • Serkis Folk: He's primarily portrayed by TJ Storm via motion capture. For certain pivotal scenes in Godzilla (2014), Gareth Edwards had Andy Serkis himself hired to control the motions of Godzilla.
  • 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 on 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.
  • Sinister Silhouettes:
    • More likely his secondary ominous Dynamic Entry accompanied by an unsettling piano string playing, with lightning flashing showing himself slowly emerging out of the fog, snarling quietly, and finally letting out his deafening roar preparing to annihilate both MUTOs once and for all.
    • Happens again in Godzilla: King of the Monsters when he shows up in Boston the same way, but instead of looking frightening, it's more built up as him looking more heroic on his way to confront Ghidorah for a rematch.
  • Slasher Smile:
    • After turning into Fire Godzilla and No Selling Ghidorah's fully-charged Gravity Beams, he flashes a nasty smile before using his Nuclear Pulse.
    • During his battle against Kong in Hong Kong, he sports a terrifyingly epic grin after sniping Kong mid-leap with his Atomic Breath.
  • Smart Animal, Inconvenient Instincts: Godzilla is intelligent enough, but in the end, he's still an animal. This really doesn't become an issue until Godzilla vs. Kong, where his instincts drive him to seek out and attack Kong after the latter leaves Skull Island. As Kong is an Alpha-level Titan that has yet to formally submit to Godzilla like the other Titans, Godzilla instinctually views him as a threat to his sovereignty, even though Kong has yet to provoke him and has no actual interest in Godzilla's position or in Godzilla himself. This leads to Godzilla starting a completely unnecessary feud with Kong, distracting him from his real goal of destroying the last of Ghidorah's remains, though he seems to overcome this at the end, sparing Kong's life at first, and later leaving him peacefully.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: The 2014 film sees him survive to the end. King of the Monsters sees him (barely) survive the Oxygen Destroyer, the same weapon that killed the original Gojira, and Burning Godzilla ends up merely being a Super Mode that he survives, not a symptom of a Superpower Meltdown that kills him like the Heisei Godzilla.
  • Spared, but Not Forgiven: Kind of subverted... After spotting Mark on the submarine, he leans down and makes eye contact with him. Just like with Ford and Serizawa he showed no aggression toward them but for Mark just a little bit of annoyance,(unlike his first appearance in KOTM where he was sensing Ghidorah's vocals via ORCA) but given the stare between the two Godzilla seems to understand what he's going through. It shows that Godzilla doesn't hold eternal grudges to those who'll help him whenever it's needed even if he was struck by the Oxygen Destroyer, but it is something that he will remember for a while. Godzilla could've destroyed humanity if they incredibly provoke his wrath but once again, ignores whatever kind of assault the military will try to pull.
  • Spiritual Antithesis: He is this with each Toho Godzilla:
    • The original Godzilla was a normal dinosaur living in deep-sea caverns when a 1954 hydrogen bomb test horribly scarred and mutated him, and held a large grudge on humanity for it. Monsterverse Godzilla does not have such grudges when he was discovered in 1954 when the US Military tried to kill him with hydrogen bombs.
    • The Showa Godzilla first became a Villain Protagonist in his debut film when he was first fighting Anguruius, and when humans realize the only reason he attacks humans is that they always respond with unprovoked attacks on him (which leads credence in King Kong vs. Godzilla where he was minding his own business). He eventually becomes a heroic character and chooses to save the planet by his own admission. Monsterverse Goji is indifferent at best when he was hunting the M.U.T.O's and grew to become protective of humans after they tried to save his life, whether indirectly or not. At the end of the second movie, he makes sure none of the Earth-borne Titans do much as to harm a single human.
    • Heisei Godzilla started as a villain in his debut film where he was an antagonistic force with an unyielding rage against humanity. But once his adopted son becomes part of his life, he eventually lets go of his hate and tried to live in peace with Godzilla Junior. Monsterverse Goji does not have many Morality Pets, but he does recognize when someone is trying to save him. This comes to a head where his reign prevents other Titans from rampaging.
    • Shin is portrayed as an unstoppable god incarnate of destruction created by man's mistakes and suffers from his mutation thrown into a world he does not recognize. While Monsterverse Goji was discovered by early humans and worshiped as a god incarnate that brings balance to the world, and he knows what humans are and knows their evolution.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: He manages to pull this off, usually when underwater, though occasionally he uses smoke and debris clouds.
  • Stealthy Colossus: For a titanic prehistoric monster, he can easily sneak up on his enemies undetected without making a sound. Looks like he got his stealth lessons from Rexy.
  • 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.
  • Sudden Sequel Heel Syndrome: In Godzilla vs. Kong, Godzilla is firmly framed as the Heel in the titular matchup, behaving much more antagonistic from the outset in contrast to the previous two films. Ultimately subverted, as he's specifically targeting Apex facilities and his initial confrontations with Kong are based more on instinct than any sort of malevolence. In the end, Mechagodzilla emerges as the true Big Bad of the story that the two have to cooperate to defeat.
  • 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 Mode: He has two, of a sort. After absorbing the radiation from a nuclear explosion that detonated a few meters from his head, he is empowered enough to fight King Ghidorah on even footing (at least until Ghidorah himself powers up with a whole city's worth of electricity) with his dorsal spines now constantly glowing blue. It's something of a double-edged sword however as he absorbed too much radiation and is building towards a nuclear explosion. After Mothra dies and is absorbed by him, he briefly transforms into Burning Godzilla, virtually invulnerable and capable of ejecting nuclear pulses powerful enough to vaporize most of Ghidorah's body. It also has the benefit of burning off the excess radiation. According to Mike Dougherty, this form is part of his and Mothra's symbiotic bond.
  • 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 M.U.T.O.s from one side of the Pacific to the other. He also repeats this with King Ghidorah, tailing him to no less than three separate locations across the planet, especially impressive given the dragon's flight speed.
  • Super Senses: According to the King of the Monsters novelization, he navigates using sound when underwater and has even memorized his entire lair using just his hearing.
  • Superior Successor: There's a huge chance that he can be possibly seen as this to Dagon. As Serizawa had mentioned in the last Godzilla movie Dagon, was said to be even older than Godzilla himself. With that set in mind Godzilla, was able to put an end to MUTO Prime where Dagon in comparison, didn't last long and was easily defeated (and later killed by getting implanted with MUTO eggs) in front of his worshippers. Either the MUTO Prime was too powerful or Dagon was just far too old to battle. Godzilla killing the male and female MUTO could also be seen as an act of vengeance as well. After King Ghidorah's destruction, Godzilla has taken his role as Alpha very seriously and has seemed to be doing it surprisingly well as he had ward off various Titans from reaching cities, repairing the Earth, and peacefully co-existing with humanity.
  • 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 torso.
    • He also performs this against King Ghidorah, with surprising grace, almost pirouetting on his feet to whip the dragon.
  • There's No Kill Like Overkill: Much like the Heisei and various Millennium series Godzillas, he makes sure his enemies stay dead. He does so by breathing down the female MUTO's mouth with his Atomic Breath, and completely vaporizes King Ghidorah to make sure he doesn't regenerate from any part of his body.
  • 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.
  • Top God: He's the King of the Gods type in relation to the other Titans on Earth, and it's predicated mainly on Authority Equals Asskicking. Ghidorah, who's a rival in the same "alpha" weight class as Godzilla and Mothra, actively challenges Godzilla for this kingship and he successfully usurps it in King of the Monsters when Godzilla is crippled and brought to near-death by the Oxygen Destroyer, prompting Godzilla to fight Ghidorah to reclaim the position upon recovering.
  • Unknown Rival: To Kong. While Godzilla views Kong as a potential rival for the position of Alpha of all the Titans, Kong is completely uninterested in usurping him due to only being concerned with Skull Island, content to ignore the rest of the world. In fact, it's not certain if Kong knew who Godzilla was or that he even existed before the events of Godzilla vs. Kong.note  It's only after Godzilla attacks him that Kong deigns to acknowledge him as a rival, and even then he doesn't go after Godzilla for a rematch until the other Alpha destroys his ancestral home in Hollow Earth, provoking him.
  • Unscrupulous Hero: He doesn't go out of his way to destroy everything in sight, and seems to actively avoid it most of the time. Even when humans fire at him or attack him with military-grade weapons in the 2014 movie, he just shrugs off their attacks and focuses on going for his natural enemy: the M.U.T.O.s. Though, he doesn't avoid it entirely, like at the Golden Gate bridge where he was clearly provoked. The tidal wave in Hawaii is the only time he hurt anyone without a good reason, and even then, it's not clear he realized that was going to happen. note 
  • Unskilled, but Strong: He prefers to use more brute strength and tenacity rather than skill (though he is quite capable of doing the opposite). Due to his large size, this is probably his most fitting style as he's not really fast such as the male M.U.T.O.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Not as much as older versions of the monster but when he starts fighting the M.U.T.O's he really starts to let loose by unleashing his primal rage and destructive power to kill his targets. Played Straight when he powers up and takes out Ghidorah.
  • 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."
  • Victorious Roar: After defeating the M.U.T.O.S and King Ghidorah, he lets loose with a roar.
  • Vocal Dissonance: Starting with King of the Monsters, he was given additional roars with his own. He has the deep bellows of the original 1954 Godzilla, the high pitch roars of the Showa and Heisei Godzilla, and the pitch-scream of the 1998 Godzilla/Zilla roar.
  • Volcanic Veins: He seems to sport these in his Burning Godzilla form, with red-orange light leaking through the cracks between his scales.
  • Walking Wasteland: Not so much under normal conditions where he's as much a hazard as any other Titan, but when he goes full-on Burning Godzilla the immense heat his body exudes is enough to cause all nearby buildings to instantly start melting.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Godzilla has displayed this without words, particularly in the novelization of Godzilla vs. Kong, where chapters from his perspective describe his rage at sensing Ghidorah is still active and the activation of the Hollow Earth energy.
    • It is implied that he figured out that the Humans activated the Oxygen Destroyer that wounded him. While he displayed a Death Glare as a response toward the first Humans he saw, he acknowledged they saved his life.
    • Most of Godzilla vs. Kong was likely his stance displaying this trope. He did not take kindly to humans, particularly Apex Cybernetics, who were experimenting with the remains of his nemesis Ghidorah. He had no way of convening it, and it took until the climatic battle in Hong Kong for anyone to realize it.
  • Worf Had the Flu: Wingard has stated Godzilla only did as poorly against MechaGodzilla because he was exhausted from fighting Kong. If nothing else, he likely wouldn't have lost the Beam-O-War.
  • World's Strongest Man: He is the most powerful of all the earth Titans as he defeated other Titans like the MUTOs, Ghidorah, and Kong, however Ghidorah and MUTO Prime are the only ones that can give Godzilla a true challenge. Mechagodzilla, on the other hand, completely mops the floor with him once fully powered, taking this title from the Big G, though in part because Godzilla has been worn down from repeated earlier battles and Mechagodzilla was designed specifically to kill him, rather than simply being more powerful.
  • 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 (though this doesn't normally happen on such a scale when he comes onto land).
  • Wrestler in All of Us: This incarnation of Godzilla seems to be somewhat of a grappler-esqe brawler in certain ways. One example is when after biting Ni, he grabs his head with both of his hands and does a chokeslam, and forcefully slammed him into the ground so hard, it made a power line tumble over. He also did a one-handed variant of the move, by ducking one of the heads underwater after capturing King Ghidorah into the ocean as an attempt to kill him where he's powerless.
  • Yellow Lightning, Blue Lightning: Godzilla is associated with blue lightning, contrasting Ghidorah's unnatural yellow.
  • You Kill It, You Bought It: How he reclaims control of Earth's other Titans from Ghidorah after the latter usurps him.

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