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Comic Book / Kaijumax

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Kaijumax is an ongoing comic series from Oni Press by Zander Cannon, creator of the graphic novel Heck and one of the creators on Top 10. The comic is centered around an island prison whose inmates are Kaiju and guards have powers similar to Ultraman.

The comic is published in "seasons" with six "episodes" a season, covering plotlines related to the inmates, the guards, and (on occasion) the world outside the prison. Season one introduces Electrogor, an insect-like Kaiju who has been captured for his crimes and sent to Kaijumax. Electrogor just wants to get back to his children: he was foraging for food ("food" being the current from power cables he was chewing on) at the time of his arrest. With the help of the Green Humongo, Electrogor escapes.

Season two follows Electrogor on his journey home, while Jeong, formerly a Kaijumax guard, finds work with the long arm of Kaiju law and love with his new partner Chisato. Season three finds Electrogor back at Kaijumax, where the tensions between rival prison gangs (the J-Pops and the Cryptids) culminate in a Prison Riot.

Season four shifts focus to a separate island facility where the female prisoners are kept, among them Goat (a character introduced back in season two) and prison doctor-turned-inmate Zhang. Things are... different at this prison, but as with the prison for the male Kaiju, conflict seems inevitable. Season Five takes a look at the court system, as a murder trial for a notorious gang leader gets underway, while the decades-old murder conviction of another Kaiju comes into question. Season Six, which Zander Cannon has said will be the last, deals with an Alien Invasion.

Kaijumax contains examples of:

  • Abusive Parents
    • The Creature of Devil's Creek's mother, who appears to be a Stern Nun but is revealed to be a Satanist. And then there's his father, who is Satan - or, rather, Beelzebub.
    • Ape-Whale frequently insults his son Whoofy and calls him a disgrace; he even threatens to hit him a few times.
    • Pikadon, Maketo gang leader and on trial for murder, had an abusive trainer who kept him cooped up in his "Pokeball" and fed sparingly when she wasn't pitting him against Mons way bigger and higher-level than he was.
    Zinka Rodriguez: All right. Listen, you little piece of crap. You ever lose me money like that again you will wish you'd never been grown in that Petri dish. You ever want to see sunlight? You better start getting a hell of a lot bigger.
  • Adult Fear: Goat tells Electrogor that while he was in prison his daughter has undoubtably grown up from the child he remembers her as being, and has probably figured out the easiest way to support herself and her little brother is by selling her body. Electrogor refuses to believe his sweet little girl would do such things, and he's horrified to find out that the truth is almost even worse.
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  • Aerith and Bob: You got characters like Electrogor, Zonn, Mechazon, Hellmoth, Ape-Whale and so on... and then you have The Creature of Devil's Creek, whose real name is 'Daniel'.
  • Affably Evil: Hellmoth. Quite cultured and well spoken compared to his Cryps peers,and manages to become the leader of the Cryps when the spot opens simply by talking. He also attempted to kill Electrogor's children after promising Electrogor he would check on them, and kills The Creature of Devil's Creek for being weak, or so it seems.
  • The Alcatraz: the titular island, created specifically to confine giant monsters. There's a separate island for female prisoners, and the Orange Mile is deep underground.
  • The Alcoholic: After quitting Kaijumax, Jeong spends most of his time at the bar in a casino run by the Von Vilestras, and is passed out drunk when nearly everyone there is massacred by the Moon Rabbits.
    • Dr. Matusmoto seems to be on the way to becoming one after the Hermanculoid's murder conviction was overturned.
  • Alien Invasion: Has happened before the comic's story at least once (Warden Kang and Colonel Singh are veterans of a Great Offscreen War). Not a few Kaijumax inmates are of extraterrestrial origin. And an invasion forms the backdrop of Season Six, where inmates are recruited into helping with the war effort.
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  • Ambiguous Disorder: Whoofy is, might be as a result of his own guilt complex.
  • The Annotated Edition: The Kaiju-sized Deluxe Hardcover is full of footnotes and extra material.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Green Humongo to Red. Not played for laughs. Specially after Green gets Red in trouble and he's fired as a result.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: Lil' Boy is Whoofy's Self-Hatred and Guilt.
  • Ascended Extra: Starting in season 3, the focus no longer is on Electrogor, and instead several other characters take the spotlight.
    • Albeit moderately relevant previously, The Creature of Devil's Creak, Jeong and Chisato are far bigger characters in season 3, with Jeong remaining as such for 4.
    • Dr. Zhang who was only a supporting character in seasons 1-3, becomes the main character of 4
    • Torgax, who had only gotten a handful of appearances previously, also comes into the spotlight in the last few issues of season 4.
    • Dr. Matsumoto and Dokkeunbi are among the main points of focus in season 5. Matsumoto previously had only being a very minor character and Dokkeunbi a background character at best.
  • Asshole Victim: Zonn. And how!
    • It's hard to feel sorry for the Cryptids when Whoofy finally snaps.
    • In the aftermath of the Cryptids' riot, the guards under Kang's command would try to paint many of the dead Kaiju this way, pointing out their crimes: this Kaiju killed a guard, that one leveled a city, and so on. Kang disagrees, singling out one casualty as a creature that hatched from an egg abandoned in a trench, fought its siblings for food, and never learned right from wrong.
    Kang:Never had a chance. And now he's dead and done hurting people.
  • Ass Shove: As is common in real-world prisons, the inmates occasionally try to smuggle objects into the prison in this manner. The opening of issue 2 depicts a Kaiju cavity search, with Gupta piloting a specially modified submarine.
  • Astral Projection: How Pikadon arrives at Nebula of the Eternal Sunrise District Court for his arraignment without leaving his cell on the Orange Mile, via "digitizing laser vibrational chakra transferral headjack".
    Gonkle: Welcome to the astral plane. Okay, so, you're not really here. Neither am I. Neither are any of these other people... You're in the prison still. We're all in our offices. Astrally projecting ourselves here. Beats sitting in space traffic, know what I'm sayin'?
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Warden Jae-Yoon Kang is clearly feared by every monster in the prison, and for good reason. However, as stern and brutal as he can be, he is a Reasonable Authority Figure in comparison to his superior, Dr. Nobuko Matsumoto, who believes that the only good Kaiju is a dead Kaiju.
  • Baba Yaga: One of the inmates in the women's facility is the old witch herself, leader of the Legendaries gang of folkloric creatures. She's not giant, of course, but her house on chicken legs is.
  • Back from the Dead: The Queen manages to come back after one of her (now crazed) fairies poisons her so she can scold Goat for her actions.
  • Bald of Evil: The Qlurge, aliens appearing as nothing more than giant floating heads, are all bald.
  • Bamboo Technology: Used by the humans living in The Hermanculoid's shell.
  • Berserk Button: Dokkeunbi finds out that Sprinkles the Dragicorn is not the Friend to All Children he appears to be.
    • Sleve McDichael, the club bouncer allegedly murdered by Pikadon, refused to let Pikadon into the club unless he agreed to a "friendly match" a la Pokemon. And then Pikadon sees the Mon he has to fight: it's very small and helpless-looking, a lot like he was before his life of crime, and he goes right for the bouncer's throat.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Mega-goblin Dokkeunbi is one of the more affable Kaijumax inmates, dubbed "Sharkmon" because he keeps great white sharks. He takes care of a de-powered Creature from Devil's Creek. He admits to his darker past, and wants nothing to do with acts of malice while doing his time. And then he finds out that his cellmate/lover Sprinkles the Dragicorn was actually eating the children he had claimed to help...
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Dr. Zhang acts like a caring doctor to Electrogor after he's attacked by Zonn but once he names his attacker she immediately starts insulting him and even threatens Electrogor with surgical equipment and when he kicks her away to defend himself she says he attacked her and has him locked in isolation.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: Zonn has two hearts. Not that it saves him when Dr. Zhang dices him to pieces.
  • Bizarre Alien Reproduction: The two spikes on Zonn's back are actually ovipositors, as Electrogor finds out after an egg sac containing a larval Zonn bursts out of where Zonn stung him.
    • However he is capable of reproducing the more traditional way, as seen with his son with Go-Go Space Baby.
  • Blood Sport: Volume 5 introduces a Kaiju gang that kidnaps human children to fight against each other in a twist on Pokémon.
    • As it turns out, human children are playing their own Pokemon-style game with live Mons. It's nowhere near as friendly as the anime. Many of the "very best" are powerfully built and heavily scarred from fighting. In flashbacks it's revealed that Pikadon was one of these before he became a criminal.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Whoofy, after being pushed to the limit by his own guilt and the Cryps about to kill him, transforms into a mature version of himself.
    • Sleve McDichael, club bouncer and the man Pikadon was accused of murdering, refused to let Pikadon and his crew into the club unless Pikadon agreed to a "friendly match" a la Pokemon. It's the sight of Pikadon's would-be opponent—a tiny, helpless-looking creature like Pikadon once was himself—that causes Pikadon to lash out.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Electrogor, who really just wanted to take care of his kids, is pushed around by several gangs, is blackmailed by Gupta, and raped by Zonn.
    • The Creature from Devil's Creek is a timid, gloomy anthropomorphic goat kaiju who is bullied by the other Cryptids and dominated by their leader, a sentient volcano called the Mountain. He ends up almost being killed by the Hellmoth in Season 3.
  • Came Back Strong: The Creature of Devil's Creek at the end of Season Five.
  • Cannot Cross Running Water: The Creature of Devil's Creek can't walk across rivers or he'll turn into an ordinary goat.
  • Cardboard Prison: Discussed when Warden Kang mentions that if the kaiju set aside their differences they could easily take over the prison, hence his policy of police brutality to keep them intimidated.
  • Combining Mecha: Each member of the female prison's Board of Directors pilots a Mecha based on one of the five celestial animals of Feng Shui: green dragon of the east (head and torso), black turtle of the north (left arm), red phoenix of the south (left leg), yellow snake of the center (right leg), and white tiger of the west (right arm). The five combine into Celestial Guardian Go, aka the MegaBoard of Directors.
  • A Combining Mecha Divided: You're the Board of Directors in your Combining Mecha, fighting an Eldritch Abomination with Combat Tentacles. Specifically, you're the warden, in the head. Problem is, the pilot of your right leg has been compromised by said Eldritch Abomination, detached from the main body, and attacked and detached your left arm, and the pilot of your right arm, who has disagreed with how you've been running things from the beginning, has decided to argue with you about it when you should be fighting the aforementioned Eldritch Abomination with Combat Tentacles (which have yanked off your left leg in the meantime). What do you think is going to happen?
  • Combat Tentacles: Goat — aka Shub-Niggurath — is essentially a goat skull with a mass of green tentacles protruding from its base, though she's too timid to use them for attacking much more than humans.
  • Courtroom Episode: Season five, among other things, has the murder trial of Maketo Gang boss Pikadon. Meanwhile, the Enigmirians are trying to overturn the Hermanculoid's murder conviction.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Jeong. A flashback reveals that his parents were killed by a Kaiju. Maybe one of the most horrific details about it is that right before bursting into flame, Jeong's father insisted that this was "just as Dear Leader had planned". The monster itself had the face of Kim Jong-Il.
    • Pikadon. His rap sheet includes kidnapping and human trafficking. His gang force human children to fight one another in a twisted parody of Pokemon. He's on trial for the murder of a bouncer at a club he was refused entry to. Before his life of crime, Pikadon was a creature grown in a lab for Pokemon-style fights. His trainer was abusive, keeping him in his "Pokeball" when she wasn't pitting him against bigger, more powerful Mons, and feeding him scraps that look disturbingly like the remains of less fortunate Mons.
  • Dating What Daddy Hates: A more justified example than most. Electrogotor is initially happy that his daughter Torgax has found a girlfriend, until he sees that said girlfriend is Dr. Zhang, who once threatened him and accused him of assaulting her when she was dating Zonn.
  • Deconstruction: As a child, Nobuko Matsumoto and her friends stood up for the turtle kaiju Zugaigo and defended him as the Protector of All Asia... only to have Zugaigo blaze a path of destruction through un-evacuated buildings and eat hundreds of innocent people. As a result, she killed him, and grew up into a hardass who believed that the only good monster is a dead one.
  • Dead Guy Junior: Zonn's son with Go-Go Space Baby.
    • Warden Kang flies out to the Nebula of the Eternal Sunrise to pay respects to the widow of the Mountain's murder victim. He happens to arrive during a birthday party for the dead officer's son.
  • Death Row: It's deep underground.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: In Season 2 #4, Electrogor literally does this when Cthulhu starts beating on his girlfriend, Shub-Niggurath.
  • Disney Death:
    • Hellmoth. Season 2 implied Torgax ate him alive. He shows up in Season 3 Issue 4 alive but missing an arm and an eye.
    • Season 3 #6's stinger shows that the Creature of Devil's Creek actually survived getting stomped on by Hellmoth.
  • Do Wrong, Right: The reason that Hellmoth kills the Creature of Devil's Creek wasn't because he betrayed the Cryptids or asked his father for a weapon to kill him, but because he didn't have the guts to even attempt to do so.
    • Dokkeunbi winds up killing Sprinkles the Dragicorn not because the Maketo gang were pressuring him to (they believe that Sprinkles might be a witness for the prosecution in their boss's murder trial), but because Dokkeunbi discovered that Sprinkles was eating the children that he was claiming to help.
  • The Dog Bites Back:
    • After enduring Zonn's manipulation and abuse for three Seasons, Dr. Zhang snaps and rips him to shreds.
    • The Creature from Devil's Creek rats out the Mountain after learning it committed a brutal cop killing, which leaves the Mountain staring down a death sentence.
    • At the end of Season 5, the Creature from Devil's Creek kills the Mountain.
    • Similarly the Creature from Devil's Creek telepathically contacts the Hellmoth in Season 6, he says that he won't hurt him but that he'll be watching him while also showing him that he's much more powerful than he used to be.
  • Doting Parent: Electrogor. In fact, it's his need to get back to his children what keeps him going.
  • The Dreaded: In Season 4, Torgax is quickly established as being feared by most of the other female inmates due to her Hair-Trigger Temper.
    • Pikadon, the "Don" of the Maketo gang, often talked about but never seen until season five.
  • Drinking the Kool-Aid: When Queen Bee offers Goat some of her royal jelly in exchange for joining her rebirth cult, the Eldritch Abomination starts to reference this trope before giving in and guzzling it down.
  • Driven to Suicide: Whoofy, pushed to the edge by his own guilt, asks one of the wardens to activate the lethal system to stop the Cryps riots, declaring that he's a monster in the process.
    Whoofy:'' Pull it. Lever. Please. P-Pull it. Do it. I deserve it. I a monster.
    • Through it's later revealed that he survived.
    • Dokkeunbi is about to, but it's averted when the Creature of Devil's Creek reappears.
  • Drop the Hammer: How Victoria Von Vilestra is killed. The weapon in question was wielded by someone who looked a lot like Gupta, who was eaten alive by the Von Vilestras a while back.
  • Due to the Dead: Warden Kang takes it upon himself to bury the Kaiju who were killed during the prison riot. Burial sites include the Sargasso Sea, the Space Belt, and a "cosmic whirlpool where all the lost things go."
  • Eaten Alive:
    • Prince Zlook does this to some contraband from Gupta. Specifically, two virgin princesses.
    • In Season 2, it's revealed that Gupta was eaten by the enforcers of the Von Vilestras, as punishment for his accidental role in the death of their leader's son.
    • Season 2 also implies that Torgax did this to Hellmoth, considering all that's left of him when Electrogor returns to his lair is a severed arm. It's later revealed in Season 3 that he survived, but was badly injured.
    • Sprinkles the Dragicorn, who claimed to help children with magic, was eating them instead, at one point munching on a school bus full of kids like it was a burrito.
  • Elephant Graveyard: Technically a Kaiju graveyard. Matsumoto flies out to a distant planet where the bones of many slain Kaiju have been placed, including those of Zugaigo, Protector of Asia.
  • Empowering Lake Lady: One of the female inmates is a water monster with the ability to conjure magical weaponry, having once offered a sword to a certain British king. Offering said sword to a berserk kaiju was what landed her in prison, and she surreptitiously offers Zhang the same weapon.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Gupta roughs up a Kaiju and casually tears its right arm off, even using the limb as a club.
    Kaiju: It's just... just gonna grow back, cloaker...
    Gupta: Don't I know it. I only wish there was a way to get rid of you all for good.
    • Upon arriving at Kaijumax, Zonn seeks out Mechazon and brags about destroying Nagoya, the city Mechazon was meant to defend.
  • Evil All Along: Sprinkles the Dragicorn. He seems affable enough, but it's revealed that he was eating the children he was claiming to help.
  • Expy:
    • The wardens and other security forces are clearly a shout-out to Ultraman and Sentai series.
    • The wardens and security forces at the female's prison are a Combining Mecha that references either Voltron or Power Rangers.
    • The officers of Science Police Team G.R.E.A.T., who seek out and subdue criminal Kaiju, wear uniforms (complete with helmets) that make them somewhat resemble Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, with a Palette Swap and minus the capes. One officer, who witnesses the death of Chisato's partner, courtesy of the Black Humongo, is an expy of Jinpei.
    • The Giant Mecha piloted by Nobuko Matsumoto resembles a female take on Gigantor, wearing a kimono.
    • The Humongo brothers—Green, Red, Blue, Yellow, and so on, but especially Green and Red—are expies of Sanda and Gaira, coupled with muddled origins. Red insists he isn't a sea lizard like his brother Green; he was a boy exposed to radiation while living in the wilderness, while Green insists he is not a Frankenstein.
    • The Kaiju that killed Jeong's parents is an expy of the title monster from Pulgasari, but with the head of Kim Jong-Il.
    • The Queen Bee, a female bee kaiju, is an obvious homage to Mothra — especially since she is attended to by a pair of singing fairies and the female prison used to be called Rebirth Island.
    • Mechazon is a stand-in for Mechagodzilla, being a robot built to destroy the organic monster he was modeled after. He develops a mind of his own and refuses to fight, similar to the "Kiryu" Mechagodzilla model from Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla.
    • Whoofy is essentially a twisted, tormented copy of Minilla, Godzilla's son. He even (sort of) has a human best friend, like Minilla had in All Monsters Attack.
    • Monster X-Zero is a three-headed, winged dragon, just like King Ghidorah. He is missing two of his heads, alluding to Ghidorah's history of getting decapitated, and his name is a combo of Monster Zero, Ghidorah's codename from Invasion of Astro-Monster and Monster X, the name of his humanoid form in Godzilla: Final Wars.
    • Victoria Von Vilestra, leader of the Seijin Gang, has minions made from clay, and used to look down on Earth from the moon with a telescope like Rita Repulsa / Bandora. She dressed quite a bit like her, too.
    • The boss of the Maketo gang (the ones behind the Human Pitfighting tournament) is a giant green Pikachu look-alike. To drive the point home, he's called Pikadon.
    • Team V.I.T.A.L.I.T.Y visually resemble the Dinobots.
    • Sprinkles, a prisoner introduced in season five, resembles a giant unicorn, claims to come from a magical land far removed from earthly concerns, and helps children solve their problems via magic, not unlike a certain dragon of song and cartoon.
    • To push the Pokémon parallel further, Pikadon's legal defense team consists of two human-like lawyers with colorful hair and a flair for the theatrical, and their smallish Kaiju assistant with a Verbal Tic.
    • Season five introduces the Enigmirians, Human Aliens who are expies of the Human Aliens who have appeared in Invasion of Astro-Monster and The Mysterians.
    • An expy of A'Tuin, the Discworld's space-swimming turtle, receives a jury summons from a courier resembling Laserbeak.
    • Sleve McDichael, Pikadon's alleged murder victim, calls on his Mons to help him in his fight with Pikadon. They are expies of Pokemon, including Snorlax.
    • The Hermanculoid is an unlikely expy of Mothra, complete with a tribe of humans who worship the giant hermit crab as a god and live inside his shell.
  • Extranormal Prison:
    • The inmates are kaijus and the wardens are Ultramans.
    • Season 4 introduces the Female Kaiju prison, staffed by Giant Mecha.
    • Season 5 introduces the Orange Mile, Kaijumax's Death Row.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Team G.R.E.A.T.'s Colonel Singh wears one. Downplayed in that she didn't lose her left eye in the Great Offscreen War; it was due to a vehicular accident while driving drunk.
    Kang: The war followed us, Parminder. Some of our wounds are still yet to come.
  • Fantastic Drug: Played with. Kaiju do indulge in illicit substances, but not the same things as people. Most of what a Kaiju would partake of is very harmful (if not outright lethal) to humans. Gupta tries to make a mint from the uranium pods growing out of Electrogor's back. Zonn is found (and arrested) at a clandestine sulfur operation. The Creature of Devil's Creek indulges in a little thalidomide. Other "drugs" include electrical current, hazardous materials, alien crystals, and smog in smokestacks. Even Jeong indulges in a little smog in Ultra mode, casually tossing the truncated smokestack into the nearest body of water like a cigarette butt.
    • The tattoos administered by Sprinkles the Unidragon have a druglike effect on their recipients, but Sprinkles insists it is not a drug he offers, but magic.
      Sprinkles: The magic to recognize the beauty of the world around you. To see through the forcefields that the world has put in front of us.
  • Fantastic Racism:
    • To say that humans are prejudiced against Kaiju would be an understatement.
    • The sentiment is returned by the Kaiju, to the point that the Cryps are kaiju equivalent of the Aryan Brotherhood version of the Kaijus, being racists towards humans and foreign kaijus.
    • The guards (human and robot) under Warden Kang's command, especially in the aftermath of the Cryptids' riot, are very vocal about their prejudice against Kaiju in a borderline "scum of the universe" fashion.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Zonn acts like a friendly individual to both Mechazon (who knows better) and to Electrogor only to quickly reveal his true colors with cruel mocking and attacking Electrogor with his ovipositors.
  • Fingore: In issue 2, Gupta gets a finger chopped off by the Yakuza-esque Von Vilestras as a warning.
  • Flying Face: The Qlurge, part of the Alien Invasion force in Season Six (and combatants in the Great Offscreen War prior to events in the comic) appear as gigantic floating humanlike heads.
  • Flying Saucer: The Kobloid Pan-Galactic Armada, who have appeared in previous issues and are part of Season Six's Alien Invasion, travel in these. Their leader appears to be a Humongous Mecha with a saucer for a head.
  • Friend in the Black Market: For the right price, Gupta is willing to smuggle in pretty much anything.
  • Friend to All Children: Subverted big time with Sprinkles the Dragicorn.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Pikadon, if we're to go by the flashbacks to his past.
  • Fun with Acronyms: Law enforcement is maintained by Team H.E.R.O.I.S.M. (prisons) and Team G.R.E.A.T. (police). The medical mecha who arrive to assist with the birth of Chisato and Jeong's daughter are from Team V.I.T.A.L.I.T.Y.
  • Fusion Dance: In Season 2, Red Humongo assimilates Green Humongo after finally snapping, recombining into the Black Humongo.
  • Gangbangers: Of the four kaiju gangs, the Maketo Gang and the Cryptids are the newest and most-ruthless, with the former mainly being comprised of younger kaiju. In Volume 2, the Von Vilestras are wiped out by a gang of moon rabbits.
  • Giant Foot of Stomping: How the Creature of Devil's Creek seemingly meets his end by the Hellmoth but it turns out he survived and fell under the care of the kind-hearted Dokkeunbi.
    • When Red Humongo snaps, his parole officer winds up underfoot.
    • Electrogor does this to the embryo that Zonn implanted in his neck.
    • How Jeong's mother died.
    • Whoofy does this to the Little Boy, ranting the whole time, right before he morphs into his mature form and wipes out the Cryptids who were about to kill him.
  • Give Him a Normal Life: Not long after giving birth to Zonn's son, Go-Go Space Baby gives him up for adoption to a couple from the Nebula of the Eternal Sunrise.
  • Gorn: The aftermath of Ape-Whale's death.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Both used and averted, depending on the circumstances. Generally, extreme violence against the monsters is shown in full detail, because their inhuman design and Alien Blood makes it easier to stomach. However, more realistic injuries (like Gupta getting his finger chopped off in issue 2) are not shown.
  • Great Offscreen War: Warden Kang and Team G.R.E.A.T.'s Colonel Singh were involved in a conflict that took place before the events of the comic. What details there are indicate it happened in the 1990s, mostly off-planet, and involved aliens.
  • Heel Realization: As Dr. Zhang consoles a fellow inmate, she describes herself experiencing this after she killed Zonn.
  • His Own Worst Enemy: We all knew that Lil' Boy was a figment of Whoofy's imagination, but what we didn't know it was his own sense of guilt of not doing anything while people around died at the hands of his father, Apewhale... and then festering inside Whoofy's mind to actively sabotage him.
    Lil' Boy':So now here I am. In the prison. In your mind. And I hope you die. Just like your stupid dad. I hope they suffocate you in a volcano. I hope they cut your head off and throw it into space. I hope they crack your jaw open and breathe fire down your throat, you weak, worthless, fat ugly piece of--''
  • Hold Your Hippogriffs: There's a lot of monster-specific slang that replaces common swear words and prison slang. Often overlaps with shout-outs to various monsters and franchises.
  • Hope Spot: The relationship between Dokkeunbi (the Sharkmon of Kaijumax) and Sprinkles the Dragicorn. It doesn't last.
  • Human Aliens: The Enigmirians, introduced in season five. They represent the Hermanculoid, a Kaiju on the Orange Mile, believing it to be wrongfully accused of murdering a Team G.R.E.A.T. officer.
    • Subverted when it turns out the Enigmirians aren't aliens after all, but a tribe of humans who live in the Hermanculoid's shell and worship him as a god. This is why they were so set on sparing "Hermie" from execution.
    • Played straight with a covert infiltration squad of Giglogons in the first issue of Season Six at the beginning of the Alien Invasion.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: Used almost word-for-word as Electrogor first lands on Kaijumax. Played for laughs, since it's being said by a 100-meter yellow insect monster. Not played for laughs later on as it turns out that they're really as monstrous as the beings they call monsters.
  • Humongous Mecha: A good number of the "monsters" on the island are robots. They form one of the island's ethnic gangs, though they seem to all be members of Mechazon's religious movement.
  • I Am a Monster: Quoted almost word for word by Whoofy, as he asks Sato to activate the anti-riot mechanism that would kill him.
  • Intimate Healing: An odd Toku-inspired variation. At one point, an upset Chisato blows a fuse in her shoulder and Jeong attempts to fix it. He winds up having to power down from Ultra mode and have Chisato put him on her shoulder so he can reach the problem part. Due to circumstances, Jeong is very anxious when not in Ultra mode, but he's able to fix the problem. Jeong winds up doing this again when Chisato is giving birth to their daughter, getting small to connect a power cable inside Chisato.
  • Irony: Goat is a Lovecraftian being known for having cults of followers yet she herself falls in with another cult.
  • The Jersey Devil: Electrogor's crater-mate, The Creature from Devil's Creek, is one of these, scaled up to Kaiju size.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: It's hard to feel sorry for Zonn when he gets shanked in the neck by Gupta and nearly dies, considering all the stuff he has done.
  • Killed Mid-Sentence:
    • Red Humongo's parole officer, via Giant Foot of Stomping.
    • A Cryptid threatening an angry Whoofy, courtesy of Whoofy's Shin Godzilla-style beams.
  • Killed Offscreen: A number of characters have met gristly fates off-panel, most notably Gupta, who is eaten alive by the Von Vilestra's enforcers.
  • Last-Minute Reprieve: Averted with Pikadon.
  • Leave No Witnesses: According to Gupta, the reason Kaijumax had to let Hellmoth go is because he somehow managed to track down and eliminate all living witnesses to the massacre of Kleinberg Heights.
    • Seems to be the motivation behind Victoria Von Vilestra's death.
    • It wasn't really his intention, but Dokkeunbi killing Sprinkles the Dragicorn did away with a potential eyewitness to the murder Pikadon was accused of.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Subverted by the lack of an explosion, but the first Cryptid to suffer Whoofy's wrath goes out this way, collapsing into a pile of neatly diced pieces courtesy of Whoofy's Shin Godzilla-style beams.
    • Played straight in the aftermath of Ape-Whale's death. Lampshaded by the author's annotation about the tendency for giant monsters to explode in Tokusatsu media.
  • Luxury Prison Suite: The son of the Von Vilestra mob's boss gets the same "cell" as everyone else-a basic crater-but he gets drugs and pornography smuggled in, and gets clearly better treatment from the guards.
  • Madness Mantra: Jeong develops one, fearing he's "gonna get squished".
  • The Mafia: The J-Pops and the Von Vilestras are old-fashioned traditionalist organized crime groups based on the Mafia and Yakuza respectively, while the Maketo Gang's mysterious leader is called "The Don".
  • Magma Man: The leader of the Cryptids is The Mountain, a sentient volcano with psychic powers capable of influencing dreams.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Zonn, who seduces Dr. Zhang, Kaijumax's empathic medic, and generally antagonizes Electrogor For the Evulz. When this adversely effects the quality of uranium that Electrogor produces, Gupta shanks Zonn for messing with his supply line.
  • Man on Fire: How Jeong's father died.
  • Mind Rape: Goat has the ability to do this and uses it to convert a fellow inmate to Queen Bee's cult.
  • Missing Mom: According to Electrogor, the mother of his children (or larvae-mommy as he calls her) was killed by a military using tanks.
  • Mons: The Maketo gang, and especially their leader, Pikadon.
  • Notzilla: Several. Electrogor himself has something of Godzilla's body shape, and is the "hero" of this story. Ape-Whale's name is a pun: Godzilla/gojira is a portmanteau of kujira, "whale," and "gorilla." Zonn appears to be made of rock but has Godzilla's silhouette, which means his robot doppelganger Mechazon looks near-identical to Mechagodzilla. Other background monsters have some similarities with the Big Guy himself.
  • Obliviously Evil: Could apply to some of the Kaiju, but most notably the Hermanculoid, a giant irradiated hermit crab and Orange Mile inmate convicted of the murder of a Team G.R.E.A.T. officer in 1970. The Enigmirians wish to overturn this conviction based on (among other things) the notion that the Hermanculoid "has the mental capacity of an immense irradiated hermit crab", and was therefore not aware that it had committed a crime (if at all).
  • Official Couple: By the time of Season 4, Chisato and Jeong are married and expecting a baby.
  • Off with His Head!:
    • Jeong inadvertently kills a Kaiju this way because he thought it was reaching for a weapon.
    • The Mountain's murder victim is taken out this way.
    • Inverted in that all that's left of Gupta is his head after the Von Vilestras were done with him.
    • During the prison riot, a guard being held hostage is taken out this way by the Cryptid Skunk. A few panels later, Skunk suffers the same fate courtesy of Whoofy, only a little more explosively.
    • Quite a few Kaiju suffer this throughout the story, especially as seen when Warden Kang is logging the casualties in the aftermath of the prison riot.
  • Oh, Crap!: The Cryptid Bunyip, upon seeing an enraged and newly evolved Whoofy.
    • The Mountain, just before the Creature of Devil's Creek rips him to pieces.
  • One-Man Army: Torgax's power and temper make her one of the most feared inmates of the female prison even though she dosen't have a gang backing her up.
  • Our Cryptids Are More Mysterious: One of the four main gangs present in Kaijumax is the the Cryptid Brotherhood, or "Cryps" for short, the Kaiju equivalent of the Aryan Brotherhood and made up of various Kaiju-sized cryptids.
  • Papa Bear: When Chisato and Jeong go after his daughter, Electrogor attacks them with such fury that he destroys Chisato's mech suit and sends her flying into orbit. Unfortunately, Chisato proves she's a Violently Protective Girlfriend when Torgax tries to eat Jeong, taking father and daughter out with a point-blank Kill Sat.
    • Later when Zonn threatens Electrogor's son he goes to Mechazon and tries to convince him to assassinate Zonn.
  • Physical God: Perhaps not surprisingly, a couple of the Kaiju are akin to this, most notably Queen Bee.
    • The Hermanculoid is a slightly more literal example, given that his worshipers live inside his shell.
  • Plant Mooks: The Von Vilestras's goons are kaiju made of sentient bamboo.
  • Police Brutality: Black Humongo is the victim of this at the hands of Chisato's first pilot.
  • Power Crystal: Have appeared as a Kaiju drug of choice, and as seen in Season Six, a means to open interdimensional portals by aliens.
  • Prison Rape: Electrogor is the victim of this at the hands of Zonn, who stabs him with one of his ovipositors and implants an egg that later bursts out of him. In Season 3, Zonn publicly threatens Electrogor with this again after he's brought back to prison.
  • Prison Riot: Takes place during the final issue of Season 3.
  • Prisons Are Gymnasiums: there's a workout room with kaiju-scale equipment: a treadmill with cars and people to stomp, a weight machine that involves pushing over a building, etc.
  • Rainbows and Unicorns: Sprinkles the Dragicorn has a rainbow-hued mane and tail.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: Witnesses at Pikadon's murder trial give conflicting acounts of what they saw. At the same time, we see the events from Pikadon's point of view, and though we never actually hear him say anything about his crime, we glimpse earlier flashbacks to Pikadon's life before he became a criminal... and the Berserk Button that set him off.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Warden Kang. He's introduced in the first issue of season one using a lot of brute force and hardnosed interrogation, but he's not quite the Well-Intentioned Extremist like Dr. Matsumoto (who, on an inspection visit to Kaijumax, was about to straight up kill an inmate for mouthing off at her. By contrast, Kang was successfully able to subdue the inmate with the minimum of force.). By season five, Kang is personally burying Kaiju who died in the prison riot. The guards under his command are taking him to task for being soft on Kaiju, leading him to tell Matsumoto of a "virtual mutiny".
    • Warden Shui Bao at the female prison tries to be this. One of her colleagues isn't having it, which is just one contribution to impending disaster.
  • Reformed, but Rejected: Red Humongo. All he wanted was to continue to work and live in peace.
  • Revealing Cover Up: The Enigmirians wish to overturn the Hermanculoid's murder conviction, finding many irregularities in the provided evidence, like "interstellar medium" found in the victim's fatal wound—material a terrestrial hermit crab would not possess, no matter how mutated. Dr. Matsumoto, a Team G.R.E.A.T. sergeant at the time of the "murder" (which might have been an accident), helped the dead officer's partner cover up whatever happened, and is trying to keep it covered.
    Xilophus: There has been a cover-up. If not by him, then by someone helping him. This much we know.
  • Robot Me: Mechazon is a robot version of the character Zonn, which causes trouble when the two of them are put in the same cell block.
  • Robot Religion: Mechazon seems to have founded one, and converted just about all of the robotic inmates to it. They venerate "the Cloud" as a god. There's a practical side to it, as Mechazon is able to project his consciousness into it to remotely hack electronic devices, using this ability to kill Goro with his own drones.
  • Rotating Protagonist: Starting in season 3, Electrogor gets Demoted to Extra and the series shifts into this style instead.
    • Seasons 1 and 2 focus heavily on Electrogor
    • Season 3 splits screentime between on The Creature of Devil's Creak ,Whoofy, Mechazon and Chisato, with Electrogor himself still having a bit of the spotlight.
    • Season 4 switches perspective into the female prison. Focus in on Doctor Zhang, who got send here after murdering Zonn while her suit is damaged, which locks her in her Ultraman form, Goat, the Eldritch Abomination Electrogor meet in season 2 and Jeong, who has been reasigned here. Towards the final portion of the season Torgax also comes into the spotlight
    • Season 5 goes back to the male prison, focusing in Dokkeunbi ("Sharkmon") and Dr. Matsumoto while Pikadon's trial serves as the main backdrop for the season.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Jeong quits Kaijumax at the sight of a crying Whoofy sitting in the middle of the gory mess that used to be Ape-Whale. Admittedly, Jeong's day was already off to a rough start, what with his road rage incident wrecking more vehicles than the initial fender-bender that started it all...
  • Sinister Shiv: Except, since they're all giants, it's the sharpened hull of a cargo ship.
  • Shapeshifter Mode Lock: of the Sizeshifter variety: Doctor Zhang's control panel was damaged when she killed Zonn and she's stuck in her giant form.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran:
    • Jin-Wook Jeong, one of the Kaijumax guards, develops PTSD and a Hair-Trigger Temper after killing a young kaiju working for Zonn. A minor accident on the way to work leads to a road rage episode, and he subsequently quits Kaijumax. His Ultraman-esque form becomes increasingly armored and weaponized the more Sanity Slippage he undergoes. He also tends to stay in Ultra mode for longer periods of time, "sizing down" reluctantly and getting very anxious when he does, muttering a Madness Mantra that he's "gonna get squished". At one point, during the birth of his and Chisato's daughter, he has to get small to help the V.I.T.A.L.I.T.Y. mechs in the process. A small sign he might be getting better is when he finally holds his and Chisato's newborn baby. He's back in Ultra mode, but all his weapons and armor have fallen away.
    • After Black Humongo kills her pilot, Chisato is left traumatized. As a result she empathizes with Jeong, who joins G.R.E.A.T. and becomes her second partner and eventually her lover.
  • Shoot the Dog: When Gokkeunbi is taken to solitary confinement for killing Sprinkles the Dragicorn, guards Sato and K.E.I.K.O. have to prepare the now-empty cell for new inmates, only it turns out the cell isn't so empty. Gokkeunbi is known as "Sharkmon" for keeping great white sharks. As Saito complains about the mess they'd have to clean up, K.E.I.K.O. promptly starts zapping the sharks dead—to Sato's shocked surprise. K.E.I.K.O. explains that Gokkeunbi is going to be in solitary for at least a month, and they don't have the resources to take care of the sharks. Chances are this could have happened to the Creature from Devil's Creek if he'd been seen.
    K.E.I.K.O.: Don't want any of them to starve.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The Kaiju substitute "Goj" for "God" in expletives.
    • The J-Pop gang leader is Ape-Whale, the literal translation of Gojira.
    • Ape-Whale's son, Whoofy, has visions of a little boy who "dreamed himself" onto Kaijumax, in a shout-out Ishiro from All Monsters Attack
    • One of the background inmates strongly resembles a Xenomorph from Alien.
    • Another inmate is a giant yellow turtle with a red shell and bird wings.
    • One inmate, a dinosaur-like creature based on the cryptid Mokele-mbembe, wears a lifeboat like a hat and has a speech pattern not unlike Simon Adebisi.
    • Amid the wrecked vehicles at the site of Jeong's road rage incident are "repaints" of the Yamato, a Shogun Warrior, a Veritech fighter or two, and a mobile suit.
    • One of the humans at Red Humongo's workplace slides down his tail shouting "Inka dinka doo!"
      • And Red Humongo quietly calls the man an idiot for saying "Inka dinka doo!" instead of "Yabba Dabba Doo!"
    • Zugaigo is stated by Word of God to be an expy of Gamera.
    • Season 2 Issue 4 is covered with references to the Cthulhu Mythos, including a shoggoth being used as a guard dog, Deep Ones, and Shub-Niggurath (nicknamed "Goat"), Azathoth (nicknamed “Nuke”, short for “The Nuclear Chaos”), Nyarlathotep (lacking a nickname as he only gets one line of dialogue), and Cthulhu himself (nicknamed "Cuttle") making cameo appearances.
    • Nobuko Matsumoto's Giant Mecha resembles Gigantor, only more feminine, with its arms looking like the sleeves of a kimono.
    • It's implied that an earlier version of the Kaijumax "prison", established in 1968, consisted of simply putting all captured Kaiju on a single island and "letting nature take its course". Nobuko Matsumoto refers to a "Let Them Fight" order.
    • Chisato channels Bender in Season 2 Issue 5 when ranting to Mechazon about how she thinks Goro murdered their father.
    • One inmate is a toad-like kaiju with a lotus flower growing out of its back, similar to Venusaur from Pokémon. He even has Poké Ball tattoos on his neck.
    • The Kaiju that killed Jeong's parents looks like Pulgasari, but with the head of Kim Jong-Il.
    • Season 3 Issue 3 is a huge one to Hamilton, including the cover in the standard Hamilton pose. The production itself is an adaptation of Godzilla (1954)
    • Whoofy's adult form is a shout-out to Shin Godzilla, being a giant, horrific version of his father covered in glowing purple markings and able to fire energy beams from all over his body.
    • Gigantoceratops (a friend of Electrogor) is a modified Titanosaurus.
    • One of the kids kidnapped for the human pitfighting tournament looks like Ethan and is named Satoshi.
    • The Maketo gang, who kidnap human children and make them fight, mostly resemble Kaiju-sized Pokemon. Their leader, Pikadon, is a HUGE and grotesque caricature of Pikachu.
    • Pikadon's defense team, Noriyuki Honda and Li Li Shaw, wear matching tailored suits, have hair matching the color of their suits (his pink, hers blue), and have a smallish Kaiju with a Verbal Tic as an assistant. They are given to a lot of theatrics, introducing themselves in rhyme...
    Gonkle: Oh, uh *ahem*. "Ginkle Gonkle, that all makes sense." Uh, J-Judge, my partners are here.
    Judge Krysamthulon: And may the lab-grown cat have mercy on your soul.
    • The Hermanculoid is worshiped like a god by a tribe of humans who live in the giant hermit crab's shell, and in appearance and demeanor they are not unlike the islanders who worship Mothra.
  • Suddenly Sober: Jeong, when he sees what's left of Gupta after the Von Vilestras were done with him.
  • Suicide by Cop: Whoofy, in season 3.
  • Symbiotic Possession: The guards on the prison facility for male kaiju have Ultraman-style powers, which means Warden Kang, Jeong, Dr. Zhang, etc. are "cosmically bonded" with giant aliens from the Nebula of the Eternal Sunrise. Leads to a bit of a faux pas for Kang when he delivers the sad news to the widow of The Mountain's murder victim, a Team G.R.E.A.T. officer. Kang addresses the woman as Mrs. Robinson, but she corrects him. She is Lady Astrolight Zero; Robinson was the Earthling (an Australian) who had been cosmically bonded to her husband at the time of the murder.
  • Take That!:
    • GINO is used as a slur amongst the kaiju.
    • In Season 3, the Little Boy's diatribe includes a condescending reference to Godzooky. The author also delivers a scathing review of The Godzilla Power Hour at the end of Issue 4.
  • The Sociopath: Zonn is casually cruel and manipulative not only towards Electrogor but his girlfriend Dr. Zhang, and Mechazon notes that he grows more powerful the more evil things he does.
  • Tattooed Crook: The Hellmoth and the Venusaur-esque kaiju. The regular cover of the first issue also depicts a kaiju with ink. Quite a few Kaiju have ink, especially the Cryptids and the Maketo gang.
    • Sprinkles, the giant unicorn-like Kaiju introduced in season five, starts a tattoo business using his own broken-off horn as a needle. The tattoos have an... interesting effect on the recipients.
    Sprinkles: Don't worry. It grows back.
  • Technological Pacifist: Mechazon was created and programmed to fight and destroy Zonn. At their initial encounter in Nagoya, Mechazon refused to fight, apparently trying to reason with his organic counterpart. Mechazon took a maglev train to the face, Nagoya was destroyed, and Mechazon wound up at Kaijumax for disobeying his programming. When Zonn is brought to Kaijumax, Mechazon's weapons systems start powering up per his original programming, but he restrains himself from doing anything. Even when Electrogor asks for his help to kill Zonn, Mechazon says he will only engage Zonn's defenses (claws, tail, ovipositors) with suppressive fire while it will be up to Electrogor to do the rest. This all winds up moot as they discover that Zonn is already dead, thanks to Dr. Zhang. Later on, when prison guard Sato activates the failsafe to quell the riot, Mechazon and the other Giant Mecha cluster around Electrogor and Vogo, shielding father and son from any further harm.
    • Also subverted a bit when Mechazon killed Goro remotely.
  • Too Important to Walk: Victoria is carried overhead by two cronies, and at one point by Baba Yaga's hut.
    • Subverted in that she can't walk, though whether this is due to injury or Earth's gravity is not specified.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Season 2, Electrogor's daughter Torgax is revealed to have metamorphosed into her adult stage, and is a lot tougher and more vicious than her father, who she resents for abandoning her and her brother.
  • Translation Convention: An odd variation seeing as almost all the dialogue is in English. Kaiju dialogue is rendered in all capital letters, while human dialogue is rendered in uppercase and lowercase letters. In some scenes where Kaiju talk to humans, the Kaiju dialogue will be rendered into upper- and lowercase letters, and whenever a prison guard goes into Ultra mode, the guard's dialogue will be in all capitals.
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: Human children play a Pokemon-style game with live Mons (many of them apparently grown in labs for this purpose), but flashbacks to Pikadon's life before he became a criminal imply that the kids play for money and the Mons suffer for it. The "very best" look like they fight a lot, all muscles and scars.
  • Turtle Island: Zigzagged with the Hermanculoid. Not a turtle, a lot more mobile, no plant and animal life living on his shell, but a tribe of humans living in his shell.
  • Ultraman Copy: The guards of Kaijumax are designed after the Ultras. Being giant humanoid aliens who combat Kaiju and bond with other species in Symbiotic Possession, though they are not really heroic in nature.
  • The Unfavorite: Mechazon; the scientist who created him greatly prefers his earlier project, Chisato.
  • The Unfought: Zonn. As Mechazon and Electrogor prepare to use the Cryps riot as cover to kill Zonn, they get to him only to find Dr. Zhang has killed him already.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Dr.Zhang befriends Go-Go Space Baby and helps her give birth to her son and save her life, but when the latter learns the former killed Zonn (the father of said child) Space Baby tries to kill her, even though she hadn't seen him in years, was cheating on her and was only killed because Zhang snapped from his abuse.
  • Unicorn: Played with. Sprinkles the Dragicorn resembles a giant bipedal unicorn more than anything else. His horn does have magical properties, but instead of purifying water or curing poison, a tattoo made with his horn causes the one tattooed to have trippy visions that Sprinkles insists are caused by magic, not drugs.
  • Un-person: Queen Bee's punishment to Goat is to erase her from everyone's memories. Goat is actually grateful this is her fate.
  • Wardens Are Evil: Particularly Gupta, who owes a lot of money to the Von Vilestras and is trying to recoup by peddling drugs to the inmates.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Dr. Nobuko Matsumoto wants to make the world a safer place for humans... even if it means killing monsters who — while not benevolent — aren't actively causing harm. Warden Kang, despite being a proponent of police brutality and excessive use of force, disagrees and manages to convince her to lighten up.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: At one point during the birth of Jeong and Chisato's daughter, Jeong has to help the Team V.I.T.A.L.I.T.Y. mechs by "getting small" and connecting a power cable—inside Chisato. Up to and including this point, Jeong has been very reluctant to shift out of Ultra Mode, for fear he's "gonna get squished".
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Whoofy. After getting constantly bullied and about to get killed by a pair of Cryps, snaps and matures into an adult version of himself.
  • World of Badass: Kaiju, giant robots, and prison guards with Ultraman powers.
  • Would Hurt a Child:
    • Hellmoth went to Electrogor's cave with the intention to kill his children.
    • Zonn wants Dr.Zhang to kill Electrogor's son.
    • The Maketo gang kidnap human children and make them fight in a twist on Pokémon.
    • Sprinkles the Dragicorn eats children alive.
  • You No Take Candle: While some Kaiju can speak fluent English, those who have spent most or all of their lives in isolation, like Electrogor, talk in broken sentences.


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