So it should come as a surprise to literally no one that I’m a Godzilla fan. He makes up a good chunk of content on my blog and until they stop making Godzilla content I have no intention of stopping. I’ve done a lot of Godzilla movie reviews and general discussions about the King of the Monsters, but I’ve never given any love to his foes. This post was going to be scheduled for November 3rd, Godzilla’s birthday, but that’s the Big G’s day, so I decided to do it now. Godzilla is defined by his enemies and despite starting out as a solo monster, he has become synonymous with the kaiju rumble. With Godzilla: King of the Monsters on its way soon, I’m going to dedicate a whole list to my top 10 favourite Godzilla foes.
Ok before people get angry at me for including Zilla on this list, hear me out. I know Zilla has become a black sheep among the Godzilla community. As far as I’m concerned, we can’t really associate Zilla with the 1998 Godzilla movie, mainly because he’s officially trademarked as an entirely different kaiju. I’m a Zilla apologist, and believe that he shouldn’t be given as much flack as he has. Zilla looks cool in my opinion, his design has a really creepy look to it and despite being quite frail compared to other kaiju, is still a pretty intimidating foe. Not to mention, the creatures asexual reproduction is a deadly weapon that actually leads to the destruction of France in the Monster Apocalypse novel. If you want a more in-depth discussion about Zilla and the impact he had on the franchise CLICK HERE, for that discussion. I think we should give Zilla another chance, he’s not excellent but I think he has made an identify for himself and therefore we shouldn’t really give him as much abuse.
What? Battra is on the list but Mothra isn’t? Blasphemy! But I have my reasons for this. For me, Mothra just isn’t really a Godzilla ‘enemy’, she just seems to clash with him as opposed to actively seek him out to kill or defeat him. But Battra is far more vicious and dangerous. To me Battra has one of the more fascinating, mainly because of his more chaotic nature. Battra is a protector of earth, and solely earth, you can see where this is going. Battra is out to eradicate humanity, because he sees them as a blight upon earth and sets out to destroy them. He is a destructive force that sees himself as a righteous protector of earth, and will defend it whatever the cost. Battra also has an amazing design, a demonic moth monster covered in spikes with a snarling face, a truly scary looking kaiju. his relationship with Mothra is also interesting, with her being a defender of both earth and humans, yet still finding common ground with her brother to fight Godzilla. Battra may be one of the lesser Godzilla foes, but his concept, design and the fact that he’s a bizzaro version of Mothra really makes him stand out for me.
I like Megalon, let me explain why. Now I’m not going to say his movie Godzilla vs Megalon (1973) is great, because it really isn’t. But the reason I like Megalon is because it has personality, and it’s a mighty enjoyable one too. Megalon acts like a baby, throwing tantrums and acting aloof rather than being an insidious villain. He does cause damage, but to him it’s all in good fun. I love seeing the scenes of him just jumping around and living in his own little bubble, it’s just fun to watch. Not to mention I find him interesting in Monster Apocalypse, being solely responsible for the destruction of most of Africa is a feat that no other kaiju seemed to really match with the exception of The Big G. Not to mention Megalon is the one who holds the distinction of being the sole victim of Godzilla’s drop kick technique, and if that isn’t enough reason to make him a memorable as a villain I don’t know what does.
One of the most bizarre and unique monsters in the Godzilla franchise, Biollante has perhaps the weirdest origin story ever, ok listen to this. A scientist combines the DNA of his deceased daughter with that of a rose-bush to preserve her soul. But when the rose bush nearly dies, he fuses it with Godzilla’s cells to make it more resilient. The result is a colossal crocodile venus fly trap monster that even manages to dwarf Godzilla. Bionllante is also a great monster since she was created by a fan, a dentist in fact which is ironic considering she has a mouth full of teeth. Biollante has an intimidating design and the fact that she is immortal makes her a real threat and one that seemingly cannot be defeated. Her gigantic mouth, endless rows of teeth and large ensnaring tentacles make for a really intimidating and fascinating looking creature. The symbolism behind Biollante is also quite interesting, bringing up the ethics of genetic testing, a theme never really explored before. So Biollante may go unnoticed by some, but to me, she is a shining beacon of the Heisei era monsters.
6. Showa Mechagodzilla
There have been a lot of Mechagodzilla incarnations over the years. The alien made rocket blaster of the Showa era, the human made Godzilla killers of the Heisei and Millenium era’s, and the living metal entity of the anime trilogy. But from all of them, which one is my favourite? Well judging from the title of the paragraph you already know the answer, it’s the Showa era Mechagodzilla. I like it for a few reasons, but the main one being it is an absolutely insane war machine. This thing has weapons in places it shouldn’t even have, finger missiles, toe missiles, knee missiles, a neck cannon, eye beams and a force field just to name a few of its bonkers abilities. The MG also has a great design, it’s drenched in Saturday morning tv show goofiness, but that’s what’s so great about it. It fits in with the campy tone of the Showa era and injects a small amount of seriousness with the amount fo pain it dispenses. The Heisei MG looks rather goofy, the anime MG barely even shows and Kiryu is fine, but I just go with my nostalgic gut and say the Showa incarnation is the best. I just love the wacky design, arsenal and campyness of the MG, it’s daft yet vicious, and was a great monster to finish off the Showa era with.
Here he is, the underrated Pterodactyl Rodan. Now Rodan does have a big fanbase, he even has his own movie before his appearance in Ghidorah the Three Headed Monster. I like Rodan because of his staying power and place in the franchise. Amidst all the exotic monsters like Biollante and Destoroyah, this giant Pterodactyl has remained among them and is still going headstrong to this day with Godzilla King of the Monsters set for release in 2019. Rodan isn’t necessarily the most interesting looking monster and his presence in the series is at time limited, appearing in only 5 Godzilla movies in an extensive role, but I like him for the fact that he has persisted all this time. His own solo movie Rodan 1956 is also pretty good, so I think Rodan needs more love. I like his little fight with Godzilla in Ghidorah the Three Headed Monster and him sacrificing his soul to revive Godzilla’s destroyed second brain in Godzilla vs Mechagodzilla 2…okay, are moments that are a testament to the respect and rivalry with the king.
The final kaiju introduced in the Heisei era, and boy did they go all out with this one. Destoroyah may have starred in only one movie, but has risen to become one of the most popular kaiju to date. Fun Fact: Destoroyah’s name is spelled like it is because Toho couldn’t trademark the word Destroyer, so they just added a couple vowels and BOOM, trademarked name. Destoroyah has a unique origin in that it was created from the Oxygen Destroyer used to kill Godzilla in 1954, nice callback to the original that ties the series up in a nice terrifying bow to cap off the franchises initial run. Destoroyah boasts some fabulous designs, his initial looks are creepy and insect like, with his final form developing into what I can only describe as the kaiju equivalent of Satan himself. Destoroyah has some truly despicable sins under his belt, being responsible in part for the death of Godzilla himself as well as the murder of his son Godzilla jnr, truly a despicable entity. Destoroyah boasts an incredible design, fascinating lore and devastating abilities, I wish we got to see more of him, maybe even see him redone in a future movie if the Monsterverse continues.
Taking home the bronze is the weird buzz-saw cyborg chicken, Gigan. Gigan is easily one of the weirdest kaiju in the Godzilla franchise, and this is a franchise where there are robot dinosaurs, satanic crab monsters and a power rangers style Antman hero. So yeah, Gigan stands out among the madness due to his wacky design. Gigan’s debut movie Godzilla vs Gigan is one of the lesser installments in the franchise, but I don’t think that downplays him too much. The sheer madness his design has is great to look at, the buzz-saw, hook hands and cyclops looking visor are all great and really lend to the alien aspects of him. I also like his personality, being petulant and sadistic, but also being a coward which is something you don’t really see in a Godzilla film. But Gigan’s coolness really came to the forefront in Godzilla: Final Wars (2004). Gigan gets a redesign and it looks beyond awesome, still cheesy but in a badass manner. So while Gigan doesn’t exactly have the best track record in terms of movies, he’s
Here he is, the OG Godzilla rival, his main man and wingman, Weeabro Dereks favourite, Anguiras. We have a lot to thank Anguiras for, he was Godzilla first opponent in a movie from Godzilla Raids Again (1955) and helped pioneer the Kaiju rumble we all know and love today. What I like about Anguiras is his relationship with Godzilla. While he did start out as Godzilla’s first monster rival, then throughout the Showa era grew to become Godzilla’s closest friends and allies. Few monsters have such a close bond with the king of the monsters, and Anguiras stands out because of this. He only appears in the Showa era and once in the Millenium series, but he has garnered a big fanbase and is a fan favourite among the community. Angurias has a simple yet effective design that has evolved and improved over the years, my favourite being the Final Wars design as shown below. Angurias may not be a part of Toho’s Big 5 (Godzilla, Ghidorah, Mothra, Mechagodzilla and Rodan), but he has cemented himself as a staple of the Godzilla kaiju roster and to this day continues to persist. For pioneering the kaiju matchup and for sticking by Godzilla’s side, Anguiras wins the silver in this list.
1. King Ghidorah
Yeah yeah! Don’t call me unoriginal for putting King Ghidorah at number 1, I won’t pick an obscure number 1 for the sake of being different, I cannot argue with the fact that Ghirodah is the most iconic Godzilla foe. Ghidorah has persisted throughout the ages and has appeared in every era of Godzilla and is still going to this day with the release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Ghidorah has an iconic design that is both majestic and scary, based on the Yamato No Orochi dragon in Japanese Mythology. With the exception of GMK Ghidorah who was a protector of earth, Ghidorah is a pure villain through and through and he commands such a villainous presence. Ghidorah has no motivation other than pure destruction, and that’s the only reason a monster needs to destroy things. Ghidorah has more than earned his title as the arch rival to Godzilla, and has been a defining opponent in Godzilla’s lifetime. His design is menacing, his abilities are fierce and his need for destruction is terrifying. King Ghidorah is the winner of this list, and is the number one Godzilla foe.
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