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Fridge / Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019)

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Fridge Brilliance

  • The film's Logo Joke involves Mesopotamian art. Why specifically Mesopotamian? Because the old Mesopotamians and Sumerians were one of the first peoples to construct a pantheon of divine beings. This fits with the "ancient", "godly" aspect of the creatures, and ultimately links to the sunken sanctuary the characters come across.
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  • The eco-terrorists talk about humanity being the infection and responsible for the imminent global extinction. While they are clearly referring to us being irresponsible with the environment in general, the existence of Titans gives a darker context to some of the man-made disasters like atomic testings (which awakened Godzilla in the first place) and strip mining (which awakened the MUTOs). The most ominous is about humans' effect on global warming, which, just like in real life, has started to melt the polar ice caps. And where is King Ghidorah imprisoned? In Antarctica. Humanity was already (and inevitably) in the process of unleashing the greatest disaster upon the Earth. The eco-terrorists just brought the apocalypse ahead of schedule.
  • In a meta sense, Ghidorah in this film in a way represents an allegory of climate change just how the 1954 Godzilla represented nuclear war. He is unleashed from Antarctica, would have been freed by the melting of the polar ice caps, destabilizes the weather and causes Hostile Terraforming that threatens the existence of all life, just how human activity in real life has caused abnormal weather patterns and damage to the atmosphere.
    • And according to this Tumblr post, the other kaiju are also allegories of clean energy battling a personification of global warming.
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  • Given that the monster cast of this film is the same as that of Ghidorah the Three Headed Monster, it's actually quite fitting that this film (part of a cinematic universe) is a spiritual homage of that movie. Why? Because that film was one of the earliest examples of a cinematic universe, done in the 60s, since Godzilla, Rodan, and Mothra all appeared in their own individual movies, before being brought together in that movie to fight a common, greater enemy.
  • The moth cocoon aquarium in the first film labeled 'Mothra' makes sense when you read that Mothra worship was widespread in this universe, especially in the East where she lives. Calling it Mothra is akin to naming a pet after a god like Zeus or Hades.
    • Not really. The tank is labelled "Dad's moth". There just happens to be a torn paper with RA right next to it, acting as a MythologyGag/Foreshadowing to Mothra herself.
  • Mothra's design in the MonsterVerse is reminiscent of the male MUTO: she has a pair of curved front legs, digitigrade hind legs, a set of smaller arms on her chest and a pair of elongated membranous wings. This may be more than just coincidence: it's likely that Mothra's species is actually related to the MUTO, being in the same family just like how wasps and bees are, sharing common traits but being distinct in terms of behavior.
    • Notably, both the MUTO species and, apparently, Mothra's species are symbiotic with Godzilla's — just different kinds of symbiosis (the MUTOs are parasitic and Mothra appears to be mutualistic, eg. what is colloquially referred to as symbiotic), and it is not unknown for evolution to cause jumps from one kind of symbiosis to another, or have speciation happen through specialising in different kinds of symbiosis.
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    • Alternatively, Mothra and the MUTO might not be related at all, but the MUTO evolved a similar appearance as a form of deceptive mimicry. This is similar to the Real Life fish called the saber-toothed blenny, that mimics the appearance of the beneficial cleaner wrasse, luring in unsuspecting fish for a grooming, only to attack them when they come close. It's possible that the male MUTO evolved a similar appearance to Mothra's species, to lure unsuspecting, inexperienced members of Godzilla's species over to their nest where the larger and stronger female would be lying in wait.
      • This is supported by the fact that after being decapitated, the female MUTO's spine can be seen briefly flopping around, proving she is a vertebrate and not... a moth
  • The female MUTO's severed head is in a research facility in the Bermuda Triangle. Of course they'd be studying a kaiju carcass there: it's the only place cold enough to preserve the specimen as no forensic freezer would be big enough to contain it.
  • Godzilla's new design in King of the Monsters has his tail somewhat smaller and thinner, and his dorsal spines much bigger. Real-life lizards store energy-rich fat in their tails as a source of energy during lean times, so it's possible that similar to this, Godzilla's been using up more of his stores due to increased activity since the MUTO incident. His claws and spines being bigger may also be similar to him entering a hormonal cycle where he becomes more aggressive and territorial, like an elephant on musth or bucks during breeding season.
  • Godzilla's sauropod-like feet with stubby toes in the first film was actually not very plausible for a biped, as much of his weight would be supported by the front of the foot, as with humans and bipedal dinosaurs. As such, him having longer toes in the sequel would actually make more sense in supporting his massive bulk.
  • If one look looks closely at Mothra's face they'll notice that she has mouthparts more similar to her original design rather than a proboscis like real moths despite the MonsterVerse going for more realistic designs, however most moths are small enough that they feed from flowers of which there aren't any large enough for a creature Mothra's size to drink from. This is likely a form of neoteny that allows her to retain her larvae form's mandibles so she can feed from more accessible food sources. She also seems to have retained the silk glands she had as a larva, allowing her to web her opponents in battle.
  • The fate of each of Madison's parents is hinted as far back as which monster they are associated with. Mark is associated with Godzilla because he left an an impact on him, even deeper than it did to his wife. Emma is associated with Mothra because she and her daughter were witness to her birth. Mothra's ultimate fate is to sacrifice her life for Godzilla. In the end, Emma does the same to protect her family.
  • Mothra's always survived by her family. Likewise, Emma is survived by Madison.
  • The concept of an "alpha" as frequently mentioned in merchandise is reflected in the behavior of Ghidorah's heads as seen in the Shazam trailer. The middle head is most vocal and aggressive of the three, rearing higher up in the air in a dominant posture, while the other two heads are more bowed down and look up toward the middle head, reflecting a submissive posture similar to dogs and wolves.
  • In one TV spot, a character asks (presumably of Godzilla) "is it just me, or has he been working out?" Since Godzilla has been out and about more after awakening from his decades-long hibernation in the first movie, he would be getting plenty of exercise and working off any weight. So basically, yes, he has - although in the movie itself, the line refers to a boost he gets in-film.
  • The Film's final trailer uses an instrumental version of the song, Somewhere Over the Rainbow. It makes perfect sense as both The Wizard of Oz and Godzilla are celebrating their respected anniversaries this year. (The Wizard of Oz is celebrating 80 years, while Godzilla is celebrating 65 years.)
  • In Godzilla Aftershock Jinshin Mushi AKA MUTO Prime made a powerful shout that was able to break apart all of Godzilla's dorsal fins. Why does this need mentioning? Ever wondered why in this movie his dorsal fins are larger and look like the classic maple leaf shape? It's simple, while it may be part of his of his evolution he basically regenerated a brand new row of them just like how a starfish can regenerate a whole arm after losing one.
  • It's revealed that Ghidorah can regenerate his heads, which makes sense as he is said to have inspired the legends of the Greek Hydra. And how does Godzilla kill him? By burning his heads off with his nuclear pulses in his Burning Form, just like how Hercules slew the Hydra by burning off its heads so they couldn't regenerate. And even after Godzilla vaporizes the rest of his body, the center head is shown still alive and struggling in Godzilla's jaws, just like how the mythical Hydra had one immortal head that lived even after Hercules severed it and forced him to bury it beneath a rock.
  • When Burning Godzilla unleashes his first nuclear pulse, we hear Mothra's roar and faintly see her outline in the flaming burst. Because she sacrificed her life to power up Godzilla, her essence now flows through him, and in a way she is still fighting alongside him, in spirit at least.
  • Godzilla and Ghidorah both win one of their two fights before the final battle, where Godzilla still needs a supercharge from a nuke and from Mothra’s Heroic Sacrifice before he can go Burning Godzilla. But that’s because Ghidorah has the clear edge in the battleground for the first and third fight: he’s larger and can fly, so give him solid ground and atmosphere, and he’ll overpower or outmaneuver Godzilla. However, when ambushed over water and dragged beneath its surface, he’s helpless: Godzilla is a true amphibious life-form who doesn’t need air and easily manuevers through water, so he can manhandle Ghidorah there.
  • The female MUTO who woke with the rest of the Titans bowing before Godzilla seems to make no sense. They're natural enemies, if the MUTO eggs in one of Godzilla's fellows is any indication. But perhaps MUTOs are only hostile to Godzilla and his kind when in mating pairs. If this is the last MUTO in existence, then she has no possibility of finding a mate, and would submit to the superior Alpha to preserve her own existence. Indeed, since Godzilla easily handled the MUTOs one-on-one in the first film, only really being threatened when they could work as a pair, might imply the relationship between these species is a lot more complicated than predator-prey or rival predators. Considering the plot of the Aftershock comic, it could also be inferred that the animosity between the MUTOs and Godzilla was being driven by the presence of the MUTO Prime, which might well have been another competing alpha, one that specifically targeted members of Godzilla’s species as a host for reproduction. With the MUTO Prime out of the way, any remaining MUTOs would be subservient to the only remaining alpha.
    • Alternately, she's a sterile member of her species, possibly the last known one, which means the real threat the MUTOs posed is no longer a factor.
  • Why does Ghidorah shrug off the Oxygen Destroyer without a scratch? Well, Ghidorah is an alien creature, whose biology is inherently different even to earthly Titans. Plus, it's hinted that, like his counterparts from other continuities, he's capable of independent space-flight. His body doesn't use oxygen in its processes. So there's nothing in his system for the Destroyer to set off.
  • Mothra arrives later in the final battle than Godzilla despite being capable of flight and having been around the same area as him. The credits reveal she'd laid an egg somewhere before her death, explaining why that would be the case.
  • After Godzilla emerges post-nuking, he regards everyone on the deck of the sub with some interest for a few seconds, then leaves to go after Ghidorah. While it could be that he simply didn’t see them as a threat, considering that he saw Serizawa in his lair, and Serizawa got close enough to touch his jaw just before the nuke detonated, it’s quite possible that he could smell Serizawa’s scent on the others and realized that they helped heal him.
    • There's another angle to this scene to be considered if you know your Godzilla lore. The scene centers on Russell during this confrontation but Dr. Chen just happens to be standing right next to him is only seen partially on camera. In past Godzilla movies the Shobijin are known to be telepathic and able to communicate with kaiju. If this version maintains some of those abilities this scene is a deliberate bait and switch. This theory might also be bolstered by later when Chen seems to show awareness Mothra is about to arrive before she does.
  • The "Monarch" codename for the organization has a double meaning after this movie, associating with the 2 monsters that takes humanity's side. On one hand, they're the MONARCH organization. AKA, they're ruling over and monitoring the monsters like Godzilla does/will. On the other hand, their symbol is 2 triangles together. A shorthand for something else, or the symbolism of looking like a monarch butterfly? Similar to Mothra, in being the wingman for protecting the earth with Godzilla?
  • Upon hearing the Alpha Frequency the first time, Mothra reacts more with curiosity rather than with intimidation or submission. Not only is Mothra unaffected by it because she is an Alpha by her own right, it's also revealed that humans used Godzilla's calls to create the Alpha Frequency, mixed with some human vocals as well. She calmed down because she was hearing something that was similar to her male counterpart.
  • It may seem odd that Madison is Defiant to the End when faced by Ghidorah in Fenway Park, but is reduced to a screaming wreck once she barricades herself inside her house. However, it makes sense when you consider that Godzilla's timely arrival gave her a Hope Spot: beforehand, she was 100% sure she was gonna die and decided to might as well give Ghidorah one last "screw you!" in retaliation, but now that she's got a fighting chance, she now wants to live to see her parents again.
  • Behemoth resembles a mammoth, but lacks a trunk. However, his anatomy is more ape-like, so the presence of prehensile forelimbs likely puts off any need for a trunk.
  • This film reveals that ancient humans had built a huge temple for Godzilla, where he still returns to for rest. This would explain why Godzilla has a softer spot for humanity and would go out of his way to avoid human casualties from the previous film. He had positive interaction with humans spanning thousands of years and he truly does not have any need to quarrel with them or cause intentional destruction to their homes.
  • Even when frightened, Mothra in her larval form doesn't try to kill humans. Even when throwing them aside, she might knock them into webs or only a short distance away. Even from the start, she wasn't interested in seriously harming humans.
    • Taking this a step further, consider that dialogue in a later scene revealed that there were survivors of the eco-terrorists' first attack, which seems unlikely given how they blew up the observation lab and shot anyone that the explosion didn't kill. It's likely that the security guards Mothra tossed aside and into the webs survived thanks to their distance from the attack, which would mean that even without meaning to, Mothra was already saving human lives within minutes of her birth.
    • Or perhaps that's exactly what she meant to do. Mothra only starts getting aggressive when containment fails, and one of the Monarch scientists states he thinks someone's sabotaging them (that would be Jonah and his men). Mothra was aware something dangerous was about to happen, and when the humans already present began pointing guns at her, she tried to intimidate them into backing down. When they fired anyway, she fought to subdue, but also went out of her way to pick one guy up in her mandibles and toss him into her web. She may have been well aware that whatever was about to happen, these people would not be safe left to their own devices.
  • Ghidorah's theme has Buddhist chants in the background, almost like a prayer of protection or a means to suppress evil. But at certain points of the theme, the chants becomes quieter and overpowered by the other instruments. Ghidorah is so powerful and malignant that nothing can subdue him.
    • In addition, the Buddhist chant in his theme is the Heart Sutra, which refers to the phenomenon of Sūnyata, that all comes from nothing and returns to nothing. As a matter of fact, Sūnyata also means Zero, as in Monster Zero.
  • So with the religious symbolism in this film, it's repeatedly noted that Godzilla is supposed to be God while Ghidorah is Satan. Now remember how the other two "main" Titans are portrayed: Mothra is a benevolent being of light who displays unwavering loyalty to Godzilla, while Rodan is a chaotic creature of fire who ends up serving Ghidorah—Mothra is an angel and Rodan is a demon.
  • Rodan acts very persistent when chasing the ARGO. Now consider the shape of the plane. From Rodan's perspective, it resembles another airborne kaiju, or even another rival Rodan.
  • Mothra's timely arrival in Boston is noticeably preceded by Dr. Chen seemingly anticipating it. This fits with Dr. Chen's status as the Monsterverse's Shobijin, but it gets even more brilliant when you remember that Mothra's Leitmotif is playing when this happens—a leitmotif whose lyrics in older portrayals were the Shobijin calling for Mothra to help save the world.
  • Although King Ghidorah was able to defeat Godzilla on land in two of their three encounters, their second encounter most likely shows how Godzilla defeated King Ghidorah the first time around. While King Ghidorah is a Titan adapted for flying through the sky (and space), Godzilla is very much at home in the ocean. During their second fight, Godzilla was keeping Ghidorah's level of moment crippled by keeping him underwater, and tore off one of King Ghidorah's heads before the Oxygen Destroyer crippled Godzilla. Where do we see King Ghidorah entombed at the beginning of the movie? Under the ice of Antarctica. In their last encounter, Godzilla likely dragged him underwater down to Antarctica, where the Titan was frozen until the modern-day.
  • The beginning of the Boston fight, (prior to Rodan's arrival), is actually a callback to the first Legendary film's fight in regards to the MUTOs' strategy against Godzilla. Godzilla, like the female MUTO hits Ghidorah with powerful and heavy attacks, while tanking any returning damage, and Mothra, (a smaller and more maneuverable flier like the male MUTO), darts in and out with quick strikes or immobilizing techniques, and either time Ghidorah reacts to one, the other picks up the slack. Given this its no wonder he summoned Rodan, because he likely would have lost on his own.
  • It actually makes some sense on why the Titan's are restoring ecosystems at the end of the film. Each Titan is basically a walking ecosystem in itself, complete with all the byproducts that entails. The 'radiation' is part of that since the news clips during the credits mention that Scylla alone is producing enough liquid nitrogen (which is EXTREMELY cold) to both stop and reverse melting ice sheets, so it's likely each Titan does something similar along with the 'radiation'.

Fridge Horror

  • Mothra's anatomy is different from that of actual moths, namely, she has sharp-toothed mandibles instead of a proboscis, mantis-like forelimbs, and a seemingly venomous stinger. These seem like the weapon toolkit of a predator.
    • Fridge Brilliance: perhaps she's a predator of the MUTO? And since the MUTO are enemies of Godzilla's species, they took a "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" approach and in turn protected the Mothras from their own stronger enemies.
  • Just how unhinged is Madison's mother (right down to Madison calling her a 'monster')? Is she at best a Well-Intentioned Extremist who is resorting to desperate measures to save the world? Or a straight-up Omnicidal Maniac of an eco-terrorist who deliberately wants to destroy all humanity? And the answer is: Somewhere in between. She's a Monarch agent who not only took Dr. Serezawa's beliefs about the necessity of the Titans to preserving Earth's ecological balance to heart, but went radical, becoming convinced that only by releasing the Titans to "cleanse" Earth and forcibly push humanity out of its dominant role could she prevent humanity causing the mass extinction of all life. To this end, she allied herself with radical eco-terrorist Alan Jonah and betrayed Monarch to set them loose. Once the full impact of her plan actually hits home, though, she comes to realize how crazy her plan was and regrets it.
  • The governments plan to kill all the Titans while they slept becomes horrifying once you look at it through a mathematical lens. The people advocating for it seem to assume that the fact their targets are slumbering guarantees success (far from it, considering WHAT they are trying to kill) and don't seem to consider the consequences of failure (an awake, angry Titan). If the chance of failure for whatever method they use is any greater than 0%, then the odds are fairly good that at least one of the 17 monsters they planned to target would pay them back in kind...
    • To illustrate this point, imagine that the governments chosen method (buried nukes or oxygen destroyers) had a 95% chance of killing or sufficiently crippling a Titan and a 5% chance to fail and result in a rampaging Titan. Those odds are good for a single monster, but for 17, the odds of there being a very angry survivor jump to around 59%. Couple that with the unlikelihood that humankind can maintain those odds throughout all 17 of their attempts...
      • This becomes even more so when you remember the one attempt we see at someone trying to kill a dormant Titan (the male MUTO in the original film) via electrocution failed to so much as injure it, and the male MUTO is comparably physically frail for a Titan (with Godzilla only needing one solid hit to kill him), making it even more likely they'd only succeed in waking them up and making them mad.
      • On the other end of the spectrum, this hits if you consider what might be the result, should the governments of the world succeed in killing all the Titans. While clearly out of line with her plan to awaken them all, Emma makes a good point in showcasing how essential the Titans are to the maintenance of Earth’s biosphere. Considering that, the consequences of just offing them would likely have devastating long-term detriments. And then, considering the likelihood of the Oxygen Destroyer being utilized as the primary instrument of this extermination, and considering the devastation left behind by the one used off the coast of Isla Del Mara (“Everything’s dead.”), what damage would that do to our biosphere to have the world’s militaries set multiple Oxygen Destroyers off all over the world?
      • Serizawa says "Seventeen. . . and counting." What happens even if you manage to kill all seventeen you know about. . . and then the one you don't wakes up?
  • Think about the level of damage that the fight between Godzilla and the MUTOs, and the MUTOs in general, caused. This movie has four kaiju at minimum, all of which dwarf the MUTOs in power (the MUTOs only had one special ability that only caused indirect damage, Mothra, Rodan, and Ghidorah all have abilities capable of destroying entire cities) and if King Ghidorah is anything like his previous counterparts, just imagine the amount of damage they will cause.
  • Remember how Gareth Edwards in the 2014 film said that humans are like ants to the kaiju, mostly ignoring us and swatting us away when we start stinging them? With that analogy, Ghidorah is the equivalent of a kid burning ants with a magnifying glass, reveling in their pain for his own twisted amusement.
  • So, Ghidorah is an alien Titan. That just raises a whole lot of horrifying questions:
    • How did he get here? If he's capable of independent space travel, like his older counterparts, then that means that not only could there be more Ghidorahs, but they could be coming to Earth in time too.
    • If Ghidorah didn't come to Earth of his own free will, who put him here? And why? Will they be coming back?
    • What other Titans are out there that could come from beyond the stars? And how do we know that, in his own environment, Ghidorah was actually the alpha species? As terrifying as he is, Ghidorah might not be the apex lifeform of his own environment.
  • Let's assume Monarch did listen to the government and kill all the Titans while they're dormant. King Ghidorah is explicitly a newer kaiju discovered, meaning they'd have killed the other Titans and due to King Ghidorah being nigh impossible to kill, likely only managed to release him and make him mad.
  • At one point in the movie, the MONARCH crew returns to Godzilla's nest, and finds themselves amidst an Advanced Ancient Acropolis filled with carvings of its former populace worshipping Godzilla and the other Titans. Considering Ghidorah and Godzilla once fought one another thousands of years ago, and considering a lack of any other landmass around the city... was the intensity of their battle the reason Atlantis sank?
  • In the first film, the military tries to initiate a plan to use a nuke to kill the MUTOs and Godzilla, but failed because the MUTOs saw it as food. Serizawa voluntarily detonates a nuclear warhead on Godzilla to charge him up, but it works too well as too much radiation made him a literal nuclear weapon. Meaning if that plan even worked at all, Godzilla would have been a walking nuke that might destroy half of the United States because of his size.
  • Emma Russell is an Expy of Joe Brody from the first film: Someone dedicated to a cause and forcing it on people that they wrecked their family life, but eventually realize they were wrong about harming their family, though it comes near the end of their lives.
  • What really killed Emma? Did she succumb to her injuries shortly after her one-liner? Was she roasted alive by Godzilla's nuclear pulses, crushed by Ghidorah when he fell over backwards, or worse, somehow managed to survive all that and is now doomed to die of exposure in the ruined, radiation-filled city?
  • The original 1954 movie made it a point to say how terrifying the Oxygen Destroyer really was, with Dr. Serizawa going so far as to burn all his research notes and allow himself to die with Godzilla when it was deployed so that no one else would be able to recreate the weapon and use it for their own purposes. That's not the case in this continuity at all. For better or worse, the United States military has their own Oxygen Destroyer, and it's likely only a matter of time before more nations are able to develop their own versions. The Pandora's Box that it represents has been officially opened.
    • And let's not forget that it was the Oxygen Destroyer that eventually gave birth to Destroyah!
    • The films only show the Destroyer's use underwater. What if a truly insane, genocidal lunatic gets their hands on one and goes for a midair detonation over a densely populated city?
  • Monarch's website implies that ancient cultures may have offered Human Sacrifices to Rodan in an effort to ensure his benevolence. Given that Rodan actually exists in this setting, is it possible that he physically showed up for said sacrifices? How many innocent and likely terrified people were thrown into his waiting beak just to make sure he doesn't go on a rampage? He does seem pretty eager to eat those pilots in his first scene in the film...
  • In the movie several people are eaten by both Ghidorah and Rodan. Whole. How long were they alive before rubble or the teeth killed them? How long were they conscious? Did they have time to realize their fate before the end?

Fridge Logic

On the headscratchers page.


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