Toho Company Has Rules To Keep Godzilla God-Like
Godzilla has established himself as, if nothing else, an emotionally stalwart lizard. Whether he’s facing down King Ghidorah, Space Godzilla, or Jeff Goldblum, Godzilla reacts to his enemies like a tidal wave reacts to a brick wall: there might be a struggle, but eventually that thing is going down. Godzilla rules, but when it comes to how he appears in his movies, Toho company has the final say over even the smallest details.
Godzilla and Kong’s Emotive History
Throughout Godzilla: King of Monsters and now repeated in Godzilla vs King Kong, we see a resolute, undaunted Godzilla. In contrast, King Kong has been humanized from his first appearance protecting Fay Wray to his most recent appearance in Kong: Skull Island.
Throughout their sometimes-intersecting history, Kong has been personified with some of the best traits from the humans who try to kill him: he is tender, protective, and appreciates beauty, even if he’s a little clumsy with how he communicates all that. Meanwhile, Godzilla has been apart and above humanity, living in one of the most uninhabitable places on the planet and only emerging from the sea to fight and restore balance. In a recent interview with Adam Wingard, director of Godzilla vs. King Kong, we were given a reason behind the radioactive reptiles stoic countenance.
Image via Warner Bros Pictures.
Toho has Rules for Godzilla
Toho, the creators of Godzilla, think it would be out of character for Godzilla to react to things the way a human might, and that makes sense. Godzilla is a 400 foot tall ancient dinosaur that can breathe atomic fire. It would be weird for all of that to react to competition in the same way a lesser monster or human might. Toho requires that Godzilla not emote because he is a god-like being, and conventional expression wouldn’t seem appropriate on him.
Despite all of the rules from Toho for Godzilla, Wingard does still say Godzilla is more expressive in this film than he has been in the rest of the Monster-verse movies. For one thing, if you see the movie, you’ll see the ancient kaiju bleed (but likely less than Wingard planned). Wingard even said attentive viewers may be able to discern a few scenes where Godzilla is laughing and smiling, though what that exactly looks like on a giant lizard face remains to be seen.
Look out for those fleeting moments of human emotion when you see Godzilla vs. King Kong, and let us know what you think of Godzilla’s emotional depth in the comments below!
Featured image via Legendary Pictures.
Jessica Kanzler lives with her wife and cats and enjoys obsessively reading fantasy and talking about writing with anyone who won't run away. Jessica has an MA in Rhetoric, Writing, and Digital Media studies, and one of her students once said she “wasn’t cool, but was clearly trying.”