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Comic Book / Godzilla, King of the Monsters (1977)

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Not directly related to the 1956 film or the 2019 film.

Godzilla, King of the Monsters (referred to simply as Godzilla in indicia) is a 1977 comic book published by Marvel Comics, starring a version of the titular Godzilla.

The series, set in the shared Marvel Universe, follows Godzilla after he's thawed out of Alaskan ice and rampages through the USA. After the later Showa films of The '70s made Godzilla into more of a heroic character, Marvel's adaptation portrayed him as an animal Anti-Hero who's just too danged big for the era he lives in. He smashes lots of stuff but also ends up saving humanity from other monsters.

Throughout the series, Godzilla is pursued by the forces of S.H.I.E.L.D. (led by Nick Fury's usual right-hand man, Dum Dum Dugan) and a Humongous Mecha, the Red Ronin, is specifically built to confront him.

Since this series ran, Toho has used its particular logo for Godzilla (shown in the upper-left corner of this page's image) as the basis for the trademark stamp of Godzilla on their own merchandise.

Written by Doug Moench, creator of Moon Knight — and he clearly had a lot of fun doing it.

The first issue was released May 3 1977. The series ended with issue #24, released April 17, 1979.

This version of Godzilla was later retconned into being its own beast known as the Leviathan (and given a new appearance) as a way of Writing Around Trademarks, ultimately meeting its demise by the hands of the X-Men.

This comic has the examples of:

  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Despite being in a universe filled with superheroes, gods and various other monsters, Godzilla himself notwithstanding, Dum-Dum Dugan refuses to believe in the Abominable Snowman.
  • Arch-Enemy: Poor Dum Dum Dugan of SHIELD has to bang his head against Godzilla for 24 issues without any lasting success.
    • A more serious one for Godzilla was the villainous Doctor Demonicus, who actually did capture the giant at least once.
  • Artistic License Paleontology: In a Marvel Godzilla book, a time-travel crossover with Devil Dinosaur was inevitable. The latter lives in a fun Theme Park Version of the Stone Age with cavemen and dinosaurs, so there you go.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch, and Yeti: Yetrigar is a prehistoric yeti-type creature, but he's mutated and grown to Godzilla-size after modern nuclear testing thaws him out.
  • Broad Strokes: The writers used the general storyline of the films which had been released prior to the comic as the backstory for their Godzilla, but the flashbacks shown never actually depict specific events that ever happened in the movies.
  • Canon Foreigner: Apart from Godzilla himself, almost all of the characters are foreign to the original films. The Canon Welding nature of the comic means that some (e.g. Dugan and other S.H.I.E.L.D. agents) are pre-existing Marvel characters, whereas others are new creations owned by Marvel (and therefore able to reappear in other Marvel Universe titles after Godzilla and the associated licensing ended). In terms of this trope, though, Professor Takiguchi, his grandson Robert and Tamara Hashioka are Japanese characters who play this straight - all are said to have history with Godzilla prior to his arrival in America - but none of them come from the films.
  • Chainsaw Good: Rhiahn, one of the Mega Monsters, with his rotating "helicopter blades of buzzsaw death" tail. It ends up being his undoing when Godzilla, decapitates him with his own tail.
  • Continuity Nod: After Red Ronin unexpectedly sides with Godzilla against S.H.I.E.L.D., an exasperated Dugan thinks about the other foes he could be facing.
    Dum Dum Dugan: Why couldn't I have something easy to tackle — like Hydra or Doom's army?!
  • Enemy Mine: Godzilla, acting as a champion for the alien Betans, fights off three "Mega-Monsters" whose alien Megan masters want to conquer Earth. For once, SHIELD actually helps Godzilla (even though they can, at best, just distract the monsters), and once he emerges victorious, Dum Dum Dugan decides to let him walk away unopposed.
  • Giant Eye of Doom: Diners at the restaurant atop Seattle's Space Needle get a very close look at Godzilla's eye when he stares in at them. They manage to flee before he sets fire to the building.
  • Humongous Mecha: Red Ronin, a Samurai-themed robot constructed to fight Godzilla.
  • Kaiju: Godzilla himself, of course - and many of his Behemoth Battle opponents as well.
  • The Kid with the Remote Control: Robert, who hijacks Red Ronin to make sure it will only be used to keep Godzilla from causing destruction, not to kill him.
  • Last Stand: The final two issues have this in New York, both for Godzilla and for the heroes he's facing.
  • Monumental Damage: The Hoover Dam, the Golden Gate Bridge and Seattle's Space Needle. Just for a start. If Godzilla ends up in a city, that city's going to get some landmarks broken.
  • Mugging the Monster: Shrunken Godzilla provides a surprise to two muggers as he is led around New York disguised in a coat and a hat.
  • Nuclear Mutant: A yeti encased in ice is released from its slumber thanks to nuclear radiation, which also grows it into Godzilla-size.
  • Off with His Head!:
    • The alien Mega-Monster Krollar decapitates Red Ronin with its tail-blade projectile.
    • Godzilla then decapitates another Mega-Monster, Rhiahn, using its own bladed tail.
  • Put on a Bus: After Krollar decapitates the Humongous Mecha Red Ronin, it's mentioned that it can simply be rebuilt. But it never is, and plays no further part in the series.
  • Shooting Superman: A security guard at the Las Vegas Royale casino shoots Godzilla between the eyes. With a handgun. Its as ineffective as youd expect.
  • Shrink Ray: S.H.I.E.L.D. contacts Giant Man to provide them with gas that shrinks Godzilla for several issues. This results in Godzilla fighting sewer rats, then growing to human-size and beating up hoodlums in New York. The 'Big' G even gets a snazzy trenchcoat to rip off!
  • Time Travel: The Fantastic Four use their time machine to send temporarily shrunken Godzilla to prehistoric time, where he fights against and alongside the Devil Dinosaur and Moonboy.
  • Viva Las Vegas!: After breaking a dam, Godzilla wanders into Las Vegas, ruining one loser's chance to get rich at gambling.

Alternative Title(s): Godzilla King Of The Monsters