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Godzilla is the son of the atomic bomb. He is a nightmare created out of the darkness of the human soul. He is the sacred beast of the apocalypse.
~ Tomoyuki Tanaka
You have your fear which might become a reality; and you have Godzilla, which is Reality.
~ Ogata to Serizawa
We call him... Gojira.
~ Dr. Ishiro Serizawa in Godzilla (2014).

Godzilla, also known in Japanese as Gojira, is the main anti-hero protagonist of the Godzilla franchise, including the movie series, comics, cartoons and video games. He is a famous daikaijū, or a Giant movie monster, who first appeared as the titular primary antagonist of Ishirō Honda's 1954 classic giant monster film, Godzilla. Since then, Godzilla has gone on to become a worldwide pop culture icon starring in over 28 Japanese films produced by Toho Co., Ltd., and 2 American films; 1 film released in 1998, produced by TriStar Pictures and featuring Zilla and another film released in 2014 by Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. with a future trilogy in production. The 1998 version is widely disfavored and is not considered a Godzilla film whilst the 2014 version was generally positively received and is considered to be a Godzilla film.

With the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki still fresh in the Japanese consciousness, Godzilla was conceived as a monster created by nuclear detonations and a metaphor for nuclear weapons in general. As the film series expanded, the stories took on less serious undertones portraying Godzilla in the role of a hero or an ally of humans, but only when facing a common foe or to protect planet Earth. Sometimes he is admired by children, but even in these depictions, most humans still fear Godzilla. In some films, Godzilla has even teamed up with fellow monsters to save the world or themselves, usually teaming with Rodan and Mothra. Godzilla's most famous enemies are known to be King Ghidorah and Mechagodzilla.

Despite being the main protagonist of the series, Godzilla has committed numerous villainous acts of destroying cities, attacking humanity and wreck havoc on the world. These actions are also known to have caused Godzilla to cross the Moral Event Horizon.


Godzilla's appearance has changed between films over the years, but many defining details have endured. In the Japanese films, Godzilla is depicted as a gigantic dinosaur with rough, bumpy, usually charcoal gray scales, a long powerful tail, and generally bone-white dorsal plates, generally shaped like maple leaves, though there are some designs whose traits may differ. His origins vary somewhat from film to film, but he is almost always described as a prehistoric creature (be it an intermediate reptile that scarred by nuclear radiation, an ancient reptillian lifeform that feed on natural atomic radiation as food whom interested with mankind's usage on atomic power or superorganism evolved from nuclear wastes), and his first attacks on Japan are linked to the beginning of the Atomic Age. In particular, mutation due to atomic radiation is presented as an explanation for his great size and strange powers. Godzilla's iconic design is composed of a mixture of various species of dinosaurs; specifically, he has the body and overall shape of an old model of a Tyrannosaurus rex, the long arms of an Iguanodon, and the dorsal plates of a Stegosaurus.

Godzilla: Resurgence

While Godzilla still portrayed as colossal prehistoric reptilian kaiju, this version of Godzilla is no longer typical irradiated dinosaur like his predecessor. In fact, he now portrayed as entirely new form of reptilian superorganism that created as result of combination of irradiated ancient microorganism that merged into single gigantic creature that evolved into better, stronger lifeform. Due to his unique origin, he had 4 forms:

First Form

Godzilla's first form upon becoming multi-cellular superorganism that newly formed from combination of irradiated ancient microorganisms he composed of is not clearly seen aside confirmed to have long tail, but is presumably similar with his second form albeit more fish/tadpole-like given that in his second form, he still possesses large gills.

Second Form

Soon after made his presence known, Godzilla make his way for Tokyo where he now have a pair of fully-functional digitigrade legs that suit for better locomotion on land. Because the legs were newly developed at that time, Godzilla only able to stands horizontally, with his body held parallel to the ground. He now began to grow arms that developed in slower rate compared to his legs as they were just in form of small, developing stubs. He also has a pair of huge eyes with small black pupils. His skin is a beige color, and has large pulsating gills on the sides of his neck, which leak a red, blood-like fluid as he moves. He also sports several rows of small tan dorsal plates on his back.

Third Form

Upon developed into third form, Godzilla began to change his posture into more like either Godzillasaurus' from Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah or several older theropod reconstructions thanks to further development of his legs. Aside his more upright posture, his skin now turned reddish in color, which also glows due to cooling system for nuclear energy in his body is yet to fully developed for adaptation on land. His arms also developed as well albeit relatively small with still-developing fingers. Since the course of his evolution now intended to have better physiology for adapting land environments, Godzilla's gills now closed and reduced in prominence albeit still functions when he need to go to ocean to cool off his body until biological cooling system for nuclear energy in his body fully developed.

Fourth Form

After further evolution to the point his body now suit for adapting land environment as well as completed the development of his nuclear energy's cooling system, Godzilla now no longer need to retreat to ocean to cooling his body. While his appearance now more like the rest of his incarnations (particulary the one that featured in 1954 film), the result of his evolution for fully adapted on land made him completely hideous and looked like a skeletal, undead being: He had numerous gaps on his hide that resulting his muscles over several parts of its body exposed. Godzilla's rib cage protrudes from the rest of his body, coming to a pointed and pronounced sternum, far more pronounced than the Godzilla designs from the Heisei series. This design also appears to possess a longer neck than previous versions. He also possesses countless uneven rows of jagged, shark-like teeth inside his mouth and a pronounced nose with large round nostrils, and his mouth extends partially into his cheeks, some teeth protruding from the skin above and underneath his mouth. Not only that, he also possesses red scales resembling keloid scars to give of impression that he seemingly the victim of Hydrogen bomb, where many of them running into structures in his black dorsal plates which are reminiscent of blood vessels. His arms now more developed albeit looked emaciated and still short compared to the rest of his incarnations'. Godzilla's tail is noticeably longer than his own body, where the tip of it red and bloody, and is covered in twisted, mangled bones. The very end of his tail appears to have a small, mostly skeletal face/skull that had prominent jaw that can be opened like actual skull. Godzilla used this face/skull to fire his second atomic beam to simultaneously beamed his atomic breath to two targets at once.

In spite of drastic changes on his body due to evolution progress, there are still some traits that still remained. First of all, Godzilla still retained his digitigrade-style posture in spite of the extreme developement on his legs. Godzilla also retained his scales, though smaller than in his previous forms. Even after his eyes shrunk, Godzilla still lacked eyelids, and only had protective membrane in place of it instead.

Whenever Godzilla released atomic breath, his skull unhinges upwards, while the bone of his lower jaw splits apart.

Origin Story

Over the years Godzilla's origin has been rewritten at least 4 times, but the only thing that remained consistent was his eventual development into nuclear-enhanced reptillian kaiju.

Showa Era

In Showa Era films, Dr. Yamane stated that Godzilla is the member of a species of prehistoric intermediate reptiles that having it's habitat at Pacific Ocean destroyed by American's H-bomb that not only killed its family, but also left him scarred and mutated into 50 foot enhanced kaiju. Consumed by grief and rage over the death of his companions as well as driven from his now uninhabitable home, Godzilla ultimately uses his newfound powers to destroyed humanity to avenge the death of his family until being killed with Serizawa's Oxygen Destroyer. Though this Godzilla indeed died by the weapon's effect, Dr. Yamane feared that nuclear tests that humanity still worked on at that moment would've been inevitably mutate another member of prehistoric intermediate reptile into another Godzilla, which turned out come true a year later, where second Godzilla emerged.

In Millennium Series, Godzilla whom killed with Oxygen Destroyer had greater impact as posthumous antagonist than in Heisei and Showa Era as:

  • In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monster All-Out Attack, the remains of the Godzilla that killed with Oxygen Destroyer was reanimated into monstrous revenant through possession by restless souls of those whom killed or left to die at the hands of the Imperial Japanese Army during the Pacific War.
  • In Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla, the first Godzilla's remains is revealed to be reduced into skeleton that later become basis of a MechaGodzilla named Kiryu that created to combat Godzilla. Due to it's creation also involved in using the said Godzilla's DNA to enhance its movements (including the tail movement), the said Godzilla's memories within the DNA was unexpectedly integrated to it's programming, which explained why it it went out of control everytime the second Godzilla it meant to fought against roared in pain.

Heisei Era

In Heisei Era, what species of prehistoric intermediate reptiles that Godzilla originally was prior to his mutation is identified/re-established as Godzillasaurus, huge dinosaur that mutated by nuclear tests performed on a nearby island called Rongerik in the 1950s. In Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, the Futurians tried to prevent this by take the said Godzillasaurus away from Lagos Island and place him frozen in the Bering Sea, only for him to actually become Godzilla in the first place by being mutated by a nuclear sub crash. Later, it's revealed that the Godzilla whom Futurians tried to erase from history and the one that killed with Oxygen Destroyer in 1954 was separate individuals, true to Dr. Yamane's fear that other Godzillasauruses may have survived to the present day and could be awakened and transformed into nuclear-enhanced kaiju by future nuclear tests.

Legendary Film series

Comic prequels of Legendary Godzilla Film series explained that Godzilla is an ancient life form from the Permian period, having survived various extinction events by consuming geothermal radiation in a hibernation-like state at the bottom of the sea until being awakened in 1954 by a nuclear submarine.

Contrary to his previous incarnations that said to be a Godzillasaurus whom mutated and irradiated into nuclear-enhanced kaiju as result of nuclear tests by humanity, Legendary incarnation of Godzilla came from a species of prehistoric reptiles that naturally evolved by nuclear radiation on Earth during Permian period as during that time, Earth had ten times more radiation than it has today. Because of it, their very physiology enhanced to the point that they can manipulate nuclear energy in their body where one of notable feats that they can do with such tremendous energy is to fire a beam of fiery atomic blasts as weapon. As the Earth's surface radiation levels declined, the Godzillas resorted to feeding on the planet's natural geothermal radiation, and went further underground in doing so for hundreds of millions of years, appearing occasionally at various points in human history, inspiring the mythologies of several cultures. In 1954, one of them was awakened by a human's nuclear submarine and out of curiousity, causing it to crash and try the nuclear energy within the vessel. This provoke humanity to study and research him, including find the way kill him by using nuclear weapons under the guise of Bravo Test. Though that Godzilla was not killed by the tests, this caused him aware with humanity's presence and went to hiding until M.U.T.O.s emergence.

Resurgence Era

In Godzilla: Resurgence, Godzilla's origin is greatly altered in spite of the only thing that remained consistent is his nature as nuclear-enhanced prehistoric creature. Here, instead of nuclear-enhanced prehistoric reptile, Godzilla is proposed as reptilian superorganism created as result of combination of countless prehistoric radiation-consuming mixotrophs that feeding on nuclear waste on the ocean floor. As the prehistoric microorganisms consumed more radioactive material, they began evolving rapidly and merging with each other into a single gigantic creature. As the monster, whom later named Godzilla, continued to evolve and grow, he eventually took on a form able to come onto land (which the form looked like a hybrid of typical Godzilla form and moray eel with unusually large gills that bleeds crimson liquid and shrunk as he evolved further). After coming ashore, the creature continued evolving and growing until it sprouted arms and began standing upright. Because of the nature of his origin, any pieces of his flesh that are broken off from his body (be it self-inflicted or result of injuries by outside) can continue to live on its own and regrow into full-grown new Godzilla that can be assumed to be more better than their parent due to still evolving.

Toho Company Ltd Godzilla Movies

Showa Era (1954-1975)


Godzilla (MosuGoji) in the Showa series

The Showa Era Godzilla films were among the first of the entire film series. In total, there are fifteen Showa-era films, amounting to over half the total Godzilla movies currently in existence. The first film, made in 1954, was simply titled Godzilla. In the original film, Godzilla was portrayed as a terrible and destructive monster. Following the success of Godzilla, Toho started filming a quickie sequel called Godzilla Raids Again. In this film, a new Godzilla was set up to fight another dinosaur-like creature, Anguirus. This second film started a trend for Godzilla films, where Godzilla would fight other giant monsters. In the 1962 film King Kong vs. Godzilla, Godzilla served as the main antagonist with King Kong being the protagonist. In the film Mothra vs. Godzilla, Godzilla is the antagonist and the protagonists are Mothra and her two offspring.

In his fifth film, Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, Godzilla took the role of a hero. From that point on, to the end of the Showa series, Godzilla stayed a hero, protecting Japan against attacks from other monsters, aliens, etc. At one point, Godzilla even adopted a son, Minilla, in Son of Godzilla, who would make appearances in later Showa-era films. The Showa-era movies played on a lot of fears and interests of people during the period in which they were made. For instance, the original Godzilla film was a movie designed to warn people about the use and testing of nuclear weapons. Likewise, Godzilla vs. Hedorah was designed to carry a message about the dangers of pollution. As space exploration and the Space Age were extremely popular in the late 1960s and early 1970s, many of Godzilla's films revolved around Godzilla fighting alien monsters, or involved an alien invasion in some shape or form. For instance, in the movie Destroy All Monsters, an alien race had managed to take control of all of Earth's monsters, who were eventually freed from their control, and destroyed the aliens who had put them under control. Godzilla serves as the main antagonist of Godzilla, Godzilla Raids Again, King Kong Vs Godzilla, and Mothra Vs Godzilla.

Heisei Era (1984-1995)


Godzilla (84Goji) in the Heisei series

The Heisei Era Godzilla films were the second of the film series. In total, there were seven Heisei-era films, making them amount to one fourth of the total Godzilla movies in existence. The Heisei-era films differed drastically from the Showa-era films in a variety of ways. The most prominent difference is that Toho did away with Godzilla being the hero of the films. While occasionally Godzilla would take the role of an antihero, he was still consistently portrayed as hazardous to humanity throughout the films. The Godzilla outfit was updated to look more realistic and much more intimidating than previous suits. Another significant difference is that the series was given an overall plotline with story arcs. Each movie happened in some sort of sequence, and generally referenced previous movies to further the plot of the series. As in the Showa era, in the first Godzilla movie of the Heisei era, The Return of Godzilla, Godzilla was the only monster to make an appearance. All succeeding Heisei-era movies would have Godzilla fight other giant monsters.

Like the Showa series, Godzilla adopted a son, Baby Godzilla, as his own child. In the final Heisei-era movie, Godzilla vs. Destoroyah, Godzilla dies after undergoing a nuclear meltdown, and his son (by that point almost half as tall as his father and called Godzilla Junior) absorbs the radiation and quickly matures to become the new King of the Monsters. In much the same way that the Showa-era played on fears and interests of people during the time period of production, Heisei-era Godzilla films made some attempts at making statements on popular topics for their time period. One good example would be Godzilla vs. Biollante, which made explicit warnings against research involving genetic engineering. Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah touched on US-Japanese relations stemming from World War II and introduced a time-travel plot. Other themes in the movies included commenting on research into hazardous material and making environmental statements. He serves as the titular primary antagonist of The Return of Godzilla, the final main antagonist of Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, and the true main antagonist of Godzilla vs. Mothra. In the other films, he was outmatched by the true main antagonists.

Millennium Era (1999-2004) - Godzilla 2001

Godzilla (SokogekiGoji) in Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack

The Millennium Era of Godzilla films are the third of the film series. There are six of these films, making them slightly under a fourth the total of the series. The Millennium series attempted to bring Godzilla back to his roots by eliminating a few of the things that the Heisei-era films had done. The most notable of these changes are, with one exception, the lack of any real continuity in the movies. Godzilla is, however, still a hazard in the Millennium series and is always a destructive force. He serves as the main antagonist of Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla, and Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S..

Resurgence Era (2016-present)

Shin Godzilla

Godzilla (ShinGoji) in Godzilla: Resurgence

The Resurgence Era starts with the 2016 film Godzilla: Resurgence. The film was written and directed by Hideaki Anno with special effects by Shinji Higuchi. Godzilla served as the main antagonist of the film. The film was released in Japanese theaters on July 29, 2016. It will not be connected to the Legendary series, marking the first time two individual Godzilla film series have been in progress at the same time. The film is notable for its use of "hybrid" special effects, a combination of traditional tokusatsu effects techniques and CGI. It is also the first and currently only Toho Godzilla movie to have no connections with the original 1954 film whatsoever.

When the Japanese coast guard investigated a small yacht floating in Tokyo Bay, it discovered that the craft was completely abandoned with no sign of a struggle or the owner's whereabouts. Suddenly, the water began to erupt and steam, causing the Tokyo Bay Aqua Line to collapse and become flooded by a strange red liquid. The Japanese government concluded that the disaster was due to an underwater volcanic eruption, but assistant cabinet secretary Rando Yaguchi proposed the incident was caused by a gigantic living creature. Yaguchi's claims were dismissed until a huge tail breaking the ocean surface not far from Tokyo Bay. The government assured the citizens that the creature would not surface, only for it crawl out of the bay and into Tokyo with it's evolved form that enable it to walked on land. Stumbling around on its hind legs and pushing itself forward with its tail, the monster destroyed everything in its path while secreting the red liquid from its gills and pouring it onto the streets. The Prime Minister deployed a squadron of helicopters to attack the beast, but when they approached, the monster suddenly evolved again, where the evolution enable it to stood up on two enlarged legs and sprouted arms. The attack was called off when the Prime Minister learned civilians were still evacuating the area, while the still-evolving monster simply returned to the ocean.

Kayoko Ann Patterson, the representative of the American ambassador, revealed that the abandoned yacht at Tokyo Bay was belonged to a zoologist named Goro Maki, who was researching a huge living creature moving on the sea floor that he named "Gojira" after a legend in his hometown on Odo Island. The said living creature is the same kaiju that attacked Tokyo earlier. His research later learned by American Department of Energy whom dubbed the monster "Godzilla" instead. Based on this information, the researchers concluded that Godzilla was feeding on nuclear waste on the sea floor, and sustained himself through nuclear fission in his body that explained how he leave a trail of radiation in his wake during the rampage in Tokyo, but also made him overheat and forced him to return to the ocean to cool off just as he evolved to the point of sprouted developing arms and having his legs enlarged for better locomotion.

Godzilla once again emerged shortly afterward at Kamakura, with new, better form after cooling himself off in the ocean. The J.S.D.F. scrambled its forces to engage Godzilla, with the Prime Minister finally giving the order to fire. Unfortunately, the J.S.D.F.'s weaponry had absolutely no effect on Godzilla thanks to the kaiju's nigh-impenetrable hide. Godzilla himself on the other hand, choosed to ignore the assault and proceed to Tokyo due to him not seeing them as threat, right toward the gorvernment's current meeting location. Once Prime Minister allowed United States to deployed several B-2 Spirit Stealth Bombers, however, that was the moment Godzilla decided to fought back: Their bombs successfully penetrate and injured his hide, enraging him that he released his atomic breath that also obliterating three districts of Tokyo. The stray atomic breath unexpectedly downing the helicopter holding the Prime Minister and the high-ranking government officials. After expending such a huge amount of energy from counterattack, Godzilla stopped moving and entered a state of hibernation.

The attempt to study his physiology by both Japanese and American forces once he become incapacitated proved difficult with nuclear radiation that emmited from his body would threatened to damage their equipment should they went too close. At the same time, Yaguchi and the other members of his research team uncovered the rest of the zoologist's research on Godzilla's physiology. The combined research led to the conclusion that Godzilla expelled so much radiation (which worsened with him exhausted his powers) that he would be unable to move again for approximately fifteen days. It was also determined that Godzilla came about as a result of ancient radiation-consuming mixotrophs feeding on nuclear waste on the sea floor and joining together and evolving into a reptillian superorganism he has become now. Aside nuclear fission in his body that become source of his powers, Godzilla is capable to survive as long as air and water is available as additional sustenance for his survival. Also, due to nature of his creation, Godzilla's healing factor was so potent that not only he able to regenerate his wounds in an instant, but any pieces of his flesh that broken off from his body (whether it was due to injuries from his enemies' attack or self mutilation) can continue to live on their own and evolve and regenerate into entire creatures in the same manner with starfishes, becoming new Godzillas. In this scenario, Earth could be overrun by rapidly-evolving mutated creatures if Godzilla was not stopped, which worsened by the fact that the creatures are progeny of Godzilla himself that would developed into better, deadlier than their parent.

The UN, headed by the US government and unware of this weakness, inform Japan that the use of thermonuclear weapons against Godzilla is inevitable after learned the Godzilla's physiology. Unwilling to see nuclear weapons detonated in Japan again, Patterson decides to use her political connections to buy Yaguchi's team as much time as possible to finish the better plan in handling the kaiju, even if it puts her own career at stake. Fortunately for her and Yaguchi, they discovered that Godzilla's blood and dorsal plates acted as a natural cooling system for his body. With it, Yaguchi had his team worked on a blood coagulant that would cause Godzilla to overheat and die as Patterson convinced the French government to make the U.S., China and Russia to postpone the nuclear strike until the day Godzilla was to awaken.

On the day Godzilla was to awaken, Yaguchi officially began Operation Yashiori, the name given to his plan to use blood cogulant against Godzilla. To render Godzilla incapacitated once again, Yaguchi provoke Godzilla to waste his own energy with trains laden with explosives that sent to attack him. Predictably, Godzilla become enrage and retaliate by attacking the approaching enemies on sight with his atomic beams that fired from his back, mouth, and dorsal plates. Once Godzilla become weakened after realized that he wasted too much energy, skyscraper buildings near him detonated by Yaguchi's men, pinned him underground and render him helpless as the operatives force-fed Godzilla the blood coagulant. Realizing that the coagulant's effect would stopped the blood flow in his body, Godzilla immediately manipulate remaining nuclear energy in his body that made him freeze himself solid to prevent himself from overheating, leaving him in a state of suspended animation. In spite of his unexpected last resort defense to save his life, the operation was declared a success, and the American nuclear strike was called off. Scientists concluded that the half-life of Godzilla's radiation was only 20 days, allowing Tokyo to recover quickly from the nuclear fallout. The Americans warned that if Godzilla were to reawaken, they would not hesitate to use the H-bomb against him. Yaguchi, meanwhile, expressed his desire to rebuild the Japanese government to be better prepared to combat Godzilla should he reawaken.

As Godzilla stood frozen in the streets of Tokyo, several humanoid skeleton-like creatures with Godzilla's dorsal plates on their backs were seen sprouting from the end of his tail, reaching out to the sky. This indicated that when Godzilla reawakened, he would likely broke into smaller, numerous Godzillas that had better and stronger forms.

American Godzilla Movies

TriStar Pictures Remake


Godzilla's look in 1998 (ShodaiJira)

In 1998, TriStar Pictures produced a remake set in New York City, directed by Roland Emmerich and starring Matthew Broderick; the film's name was simply 'Godzilla'. Despite negative reviews from film critics and negative reception from the fans of the original Japanese Godzilla, the film made over $379 million at the box office, and spawned an animated television series called Godzilla: The Series, which drew much better reception all-around. However, the 1998 film was still a weak leak in the franchise and being a complete flop, all sequels were cancelled. Toho classifies the monster in this movie as Zilla, and it was featured briefly in their film Godzilla: Final Wars. Makers of this film stated in cinematic magazine interviews that the American incarnation of the monster did not merit having "God" in his name. Zilla's roars were partly by Frank Welker.

Legendary Pictures Reboot

Legendary Godzilla

Godzilla's new updated look (LegendaryGoji).

In the 2014 Legendary Pictures reboot, Godzilla is a prehistoric amphibious monster who fed off of Earth's natural radiation and appeared as the titular main anti-heroic protagonist. Over the years, however, as the radiation emitted from the planet gradually declined, Godzilla retreated to the ocean depths, where he could absorb radiation from the Earth's core. He did, occasionally appeared at various points in human history, inspiring the mythologies of several cultures.  In 1954, an American nuclear submarine unwittingly awakened Godzilla when it reached the lower depths of the ocean, drawing him to the surface in search of new sources of radiation. Godzilla attacked and fed on American and Soviet nuclear submarines in the South Pacific Ocean, with each nation believing the other was responsible for the attacks. When Godzilla's existence became known, the American military began detonating a series of nuclear bombs in the Marshall Islands to try and kill him, under the guise of nuclear testing. At the same time, humanity also awakened Shinomura, another prehistoric kaiju whom used to fight against Godzilla in the past, whom proceed to fight Godzilla. In the middle of their battle, another nuclear bomb sent to the location where it killed Shinomura, but Godzilla survived and went to hiding for decades.

Godzilla comes to restore the balance of nature when the M.U.T.O.s (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organisms), prehistoric creatures who are the main antagonists of the film, awaken and wreak havoc while traveling to meet each other in San Francisco. Godzilla follows the male, winged M.U.T.O. to San Francisco and arrives.

The military fails to stop Godzilla when he arrives at the Golden Gate Bridge and pulls back to allow the monsters to fight. During the ensuing battle between the monsters, Lt. Ford Brody (the main human protagonist of the film) and a team of soldiers enter the city by HALO jump on a mission to disarm the warhead. Unable to disarm it, they take onto a boat for disposal at sea.

Meanwhile Godzilla seems to be gaining the upper hand in his battle with the female, until the male arrives and the two gang up on Godzilla, injuring and battering him all over, gaining the upper hand. Ford incinerates the nest of the M.U.T.O.'s eggs, causing the female to leave the battle while Godzilla regains the advantage and kills the male with a powerful swipe of his tail, impaling the male on wreckage of a nearby building. The female M.U.T.O. wipes out the team at the boat, but before she can kill Ford, Godzilla fires his atomic breath down her throat, decapitating her, restoring all power to the city and balance to nature. Godzilla then collapses out of a victorious exhaustion, and Ford pilots the boat out to sea, rescued just before the warhead explodes.

The next day, Ford is reunited with his family and Godzilla, thought to be dead, suddenly awakens. He rises and lets out a final roar before returning to the sea with the city cheering and remarking him as the "King of the Monsters - savior of our city?".

Godzilla 2 (2018)

Not much is known about the film's plot, but it has been confirmed that Godzilla is going to meet Mothra, Rodan, and King Ghidorah.

Godzilla vs. Kong (2020)

The film's plot is not yet disclosed, but it is confirmed that Godzilla will encounter and battle King Kong, making it the first time the two duel since 1962's King Kong vs. Godzilla.


In 1954 film, Godzilla is portrayed as tragic monster whom lashed out on humanity by destroying any boats that he encountered and later laying waste to the city of Tokyo in retaliation of destruction of his home and family due to American's H-bomb test. The kaiju was traumatized so much that mere sight of bright light made him angrier than ever. Dr. Yamane, whom knew that the bright light would provoke Godzilla tried to warn military, but is ignored that as he feared, this resulting Godzilla enraged so much that the whole Tokyo is destroyed.

In the subsequent films of the early Showa era, the Heisei era, some of the Millennium era and Legendary Pictures' Godzilla, Godzilla is an animal with at least semi-sapience that stumbles upon human civilization without any malicious intent, only destroying man-made structures or obstacles like buildings when the humans provoke him, or, when dead-set on arriving at a certain location. Over time, he developed into character with being more heroic and has since become a savior of the Earth, saving the world from other monsters like King Ghidorah, the Showa MechaGodzilla, Biollante, and Monster X, alone or alongside other monsters like Rodan, Anguirus, and Mothra. It is to be noted that Godzilla defends Earth only, which does not necessarily include humanity, Godzilla defends Earth solely for territorial purposes, which can be seen mostly in the Heisei and Millennium films. However, he is portrayed as an actual hero in the Showa series. According to Mothra's Shobijin's translation of Mothra, Rodan and Godzilla's conversation in Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, Godzilla only "hates humans because they hate him," suggesting that this Godzilla never had any true malicious intent but was only reacting to constantly being attacked by humans that explained odds between him and mankind. Rodan later agrees with Godzilla's statement.

The only incarnation of Godzilla that portrayed as truly malevolent being was in Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monster All-Out Attack. Unlike the rest of his incarnation, this Godzilla was extremely wrathful, cold, brutal, violent and ruthless. Godzilla also almost never showed any facial expression beyond a cold and terrifying glare. On top of that, he cannot be reasoned with and will not stop until the whole Japan reduced into ashes. Isayama, the prophet whom have the vision of Guardian Monsters whom would rose to stop the kaiju, explained that reason why Godzilla become malevolent being was due to him not Godzilla, but rather the amalgam of restless souls of those whom killed or left to die in Pacific War that possessed the remains of Godzilla that killed by Serizawa back in 1954, reanimating kaiju into a colossal revenant (which explained his survivability even after reduced into disembodied beating heart and his zombie-like eye).

For Legendary Films, Godzilla also portrayed as territorial animal like the previous incarnation. He now portrayed more or less as full-blown hero whom come to restore balance on entire planet. Due to his past actions in attacking American and Soviet submarines out of its curiousities with their usage with nuclear power, Godzilla actively  to avoid another conflict with humanity, which is apparent as he tried his best not to provoke military forces to attack him: When having himself surrounded by navy ships in close proximity during his pursuit for M.U.T.O.s, he carefully (and cautiously) swim near them and even chooses to dive below the said ships to escape instead of ramming them. Even when splitting Golden Gate Bridge into half, the destruction was purely accidental due to him reacted by artillery shots on the gills that made him panic and flee in confusion. After killed both M.U.T.O.s, he even peacefully left humanity without any conflict.

Powers and Abilities

Atomic Breath

Godzilla atomic breath

Godzilla's Atomic Breath.

Godzilla's signature weapon is his distinctive atomic breath. Godzilla's dorsal plates glow ominously, and then he lets loose with a concentrated blast of radiation from his mouth. This power is commonly mistaken for breathing literal fire, one of the most common misconceptions of the entire series.

Godzilla has been shown apparently being able to adjust the intensity of his ray, varying from a blast of superheated vapor, such as in the 1950s and 1960s (in the earliest films, the atomic breath was nothing more than baby powder shot out with a hose), to a beam with explosive and kinetic properties, in the 1970s and onward. The ray is usually portrayed as being neon blue, though in Godzilla 2000: Millennium and Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, it is a reddish orange to signify an increased level of power.

In Godzilla 2000 and Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, Godzilla's atomic breath was shown as having incendiary properties and was strong enough to destroy a miniature black hole, while in Godzilla: Final Wars, it possessed incredible range, amazing power and pin-point accuracy, able to hit a target in outer space and kill most kaiju with a single shot. Also in Godzilla: Final Wars, Godzilla also demonstrated his ability to actually change the intensity of his atomic breath when fighting Keizer Ghidorah. With a quick turn, Godzilla's breath went from the iconic blue beam to the intensity of reddish orange which literally caused the monster Keizer Ghidorah to explode in the upper atmosphere.

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Godzilla's Spiral Heat Ray.

A variation of the standard atomic ray in the Heisei series was the red "spiral ray" which he acquired as a result of absorbing the Rodan's life energy. This ray was so powerful that only a few blasts of it were sufficient to completely destroy MechaGodzilla and SpaceGodzilla, though Destoroyah was able to withstand several hits. In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, a variant of his spiral ray was seen when King Ghidorah used his golden gravity beams on Godzilla. Godzilla was somehow able to draw strength from the gravity beams and used the absorbed energy to fire a blast of blue energy wrapped in a golden spiral that completely destroyed King Ghidorah. The spiral ray returned in Godzilla: Final Wars, where it was strong enough to push Keizer Ghidorah to the edge of space, destroying him in an explosion visible from the surface of the Earth.
Godzilla 2014 by jd1680a-d7yrtkd

Godzilla's Atomic Breath seen in the 2014 American reboot.

In Legendary Reboot Version, Godzilla's atomic breath was more of a focused, fiery shaped energy beam that Godzilla spews out. Godzilla only used it against the M.U.T.O.s after he had taken a severe beating and was already growing weaker, showing that Godzilla only uses it as a last resort against opponents he can't physically overpower on his own. This version's atomic breath is obviously not as destructive as it's predecessors', but still incredibly deadly in its own right as it can be used to simultaneously both burns and push the female M.U.T.O. and also explodes her neck that resulting in fiery decapitation. It is, however, entirely possible that Godzilla never used his atomic breath at its full power (given that this Godzilla not using the atomic breath as it's trump card), seeing as how Godzilla was already extremely weak when he began using it, so whether or not it's capable of more is unknown at this point. The neon-blue glow on Godzilla's dorsal plates begins at the tail and goes all the way to the top of his neck in this film.

In Godzilla: Resurgence, Godzilla's had 2 variation of atomic breath: One is a focused purple laser capable of slicing buildings in half and a gout of concentrated atomic flame and ashes. The latter version of Godzilla's atomic breath is capable of completely destroying three districts of Tokyo at once. Not only from his mouth, Godzilla can also determine where he can release his atomic blast, as he can fire multiple atomic lasers from his back for dispatching a horde of enemies that dare to approach him from behind and fire a beam of atomic laser from the tip of his tail should he need to blast two enemies simultaneously.

On an interesting fact, whilst Godzilla's signature atomic breath can easily set entire city blocks ablaze and obliterate most military weaponry on a whim, many of Godzilla's opponents have shown the ability to withstand it, at least in its standard intensity. For example, in the Showa series, both Rodan and King Ghidorah were able to withstand direct hits from Godzilla's atomic breath with little visible harm. In the Heisei series, Rodan was vulnerable to the beam at close range, though King Ghidorah remained immune until Godzilla utilized his more powerful spiral heat ray. The Heisei version of MechaGodzilla possessed a special diamond-plated armor that allowed it to absorb Godzilla's atomic breath and reflect it through the plasma grenade port on its abdomen. Many of Godzilla's more powerful opponents, including King Ghidorah, MechaGodzilla, SpaceGodzilla, Destoroyah and Monster X, have proven to be resistant to Godzilla's atomic breath until he was forced to utilize a more powerful variation of it. The only exception of this is in his fight against Zilla, where Godzilla only need a single atomic blast to defeat it.

Nuclear Pulse

In addition to his very deadly atomic breath, Godzilla can also emit atomic energy in all directions from every inch of his body in a short-range pulse. The pulse was first seen in his fight against Biollante. Godzilla only used the nuclear pulse in the Heisei series, although many consider the climactic scene in Godzilla 2000 in which Orga is destroyed while attempting to swallow Godzilla like a snake to be a use of Godzilla's nuclear pulse; and also, Godzilla uses something similar to a nuclear pulse to prevent Keizer Ghidorah from draining any more of his energy from him after being surged with Ozaki's energy.

Godzilla's ability to fire a salvo of atomic lasers from his dorsal plates in Godzilla: Resurgence is also a variant of nuclear pulse ability. When he fires atomic laserd from his dorsal plates, the plates also emit tremendous amouts of radiation on the same direction where he fired the lasers. Godzilla's body even constantly emit atomic energy that would render equipments to study his body useless if get too close.


In Godzilla vs. MechaGodzilla, Godzilla found a way to generate powerful magnetic fields from his body after being struck several times by lightning, which proved devastating against his metallic foe. This is the only time Godzilla ever used this power.


Godzilla has displayed an uncanny ability to sustain damage throughout his films. Starting in the first Godzilla film, Godzilla displayed an immunity to conventional weaponry, virtually impervious to everything the JSDF threw at him. He has demonstrated the ability to survive complete submersion in magma for an extended period of time, sometimes while under extreme pressure from tectonic plates (as seen in Godzilla vs. Mothra). He has even survived being in ground zero of asteroid impacts. The only times his flesh has been visibly pierced were in battle with the Super X, Showa Gigan, Biollante, King Ghidorah, Destoroyah, and from MechaGodzilla's weapons in the Showa, Heisei and Millennium series.

Healing Factor

In addition to being extremely resistant to damage, Godzilla possesses an extremely advanced and highly efficient regenerative ability. This power was a crucial plot point of Godzilla vs. Biollante and Godzilla 2000: Millennium. In Godzilla 2000, it is explained that Godzilla's regenerative abilities may have something to do with his radioactive properties, and Regenerator G-1 ("Organizer G-1" in the Japanese version) is the name given to a substance in his cells that is responsible for Godzilla's swift healing. In Godzilla vs. Biollante, Japanese scientists use samples of the Godzilla cells (called G-cells throughout the Heisei series of Godzilla films) to help create the Anti-Nuclear Energy Bacteria (ANEB). This healing factor would be inherited by all creatures spawned from Godzilla's DNA, those being Biollante, SpaceGodzilla and Orga. While the M.U.T.O.s are shown to face Godzilla to the point of exhaustion, he manages to get back to his feet and return to the ocean in a matter of hours which could either be a testament to his incredible durability and he was simply exhausted, or he healed off the damage by sunrise.

In Godzilla: Resurgence, Godzilla's healing factor is so potent that pieces of his flesh that are broken off from his body can continue to live on their own and evolve and regenerate into entire creatures in the same manner with starfishes. This is due to Godzilla being composed of countless microorganisms that have joined together into single multi-cellular lifeform, each capable of living individually on its own.


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Godzilla's super strength with his tail.

As attributed to his size, weight and mass, Godzilla has displayed varied levels of physical strength sufficient to lift weights exceeding 20,000 tons and smash skyscrapers. He has been depicted lifting and throwing monsters in excess of his own weight, such as King Ghidorah, Hedorah, MechaGodzilla and others including Biollante, and in Godzilla: Final Wars was even able to throw Kumonga clear over the horizon.

Energy Absorption and Manipulation

Ever since the original film, Godzilla has been capable of absorbing huge amounts of energy, often nuclear in nature. This also explained various feats that he can do such as Atomic Breath, Nuclear Pulse, Ferrokinesis, and energize his blows for more destructive effect.

In the Showa series, as result of being irradiated by a hydrogen bomb explosion, Godzilla's body absorbed tremendous amount of nuclear energy so much that his physiology enhanced to the point that he become walking nuclear reactor, gaining the ability to emit high levels of radiation and fire his trademark atomic breath. The same thing occured on other Godzilla in the Heisei series, where in this case, the said Godzilla was exposed to the detonation of a Soviet nuclear submarine, which irradiate and mutate him into an 80 meter-tall atomic-powered monster. Since his physiology enhanced to the point of his heart become a biological nuclear reactor, the Heisei Godzilla relies on nuclear power to sustain his metabolism, and derives his sustenance from absorbing energy from active man-made nuclear reactors.

Godzilla was also able to absorb the energy that generated from nuclear submarines or other man-made nuclear reactors as well; in one case the energy absorbed from a nuclear sub was enough to allow Godzilla's immune system to purge the Anti-Nuclear Energy Bacteria from his body and cause him to grow 20 meters in height. When nuclear reactions in his heart caused uranium deposits under Birth Island to ignite and vaporize the island, Godzilla absorbed the radiation given off by the explosion. While this influx of radiation did eventually cause Godzilla's heart to undergo a catastrophic meltdown and kill him, it made Godzilla substantially more powerful for a period of time. According to Kenichi Yamane, Godzilla's heart contained enough nuclear power to create "a burst of energy unseen since time began" which would cause the Earth's atmosphere to ignite if it exploded. If Godzilla's meltdown was not kept under control by G-Force's freezer weapons, his heart would have melted down into the Earth's core and caused the planet to implode.

In Legendary Pictures' Godzilla, Godzilla still portrayed with ability to feed on nuclear radiation as sustenance. While at first he can absorb natural geothermal radiation on Earth when radiation was ten times more than today prior to resort to consume the same energy on Earth's core, Godzilla later discovered that he can do the same on man-made nuclear reactor from nuclear submarines. It was thanks to his natural abilities in absorbing geothermal radiation from the Earth's core that enable him to survive extinction era.

In Godzilla: Resurgence, Godzilla's ability to manipulate energy was proved more potent than his predecessors. It fact, this version of Godzilla now able to project a salvo of atomic beams for his dorsal plates to attack any opponents that dare to attack him from behind as well as ability to project atomic beam from the tip of his tail. How he came to being was explained to be a colony of prehistoric microorganisms that survived to present day in ocean until mutated and irradiated by nuclear waste that they consumed. As they consumed more radioactive materials, the microorganisms incorporating nuclear energy into their biological processes that resulting them merges and grows into reptillian superorganism that derives his energy from nuclear fission occurring within his body.

Godzilla can also absorb other form of energy, such as electricity that now not only revitalize him like nuclear energy, but also enable him to performed Ferrokinesis. The revenant Godzilla in Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack can also absorb Ghidorah's gravity beam and combines them with his atomic breath, forming a more powerful atomic beam that obliterates King Ghidorah in a single hit. Godzilla can also absorb plasma energy or Keizer energy from Ozaki's that save his life from Keizer Ghidorah's clutches.


Though not an amphibian, Godzilla has an amphibious lifestyle. He spends half of his life in water and the other on land. He is as adept a fighter underwater as he is on land. Capable of marching on the sea floor or swimming by undulating his tail like a crocodile, Godzilla is displayed as being able to breathe underwater, occasionally hibernating in the ocean depths between movies, and being submerged apparently does not impede his atomic ray, as seen in Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah. He engages opponents in the sea on multiple occasions, fighting King Ghidorah, Ebirah, Battra, Biollante and Mothra either beneath or on the surface of the waves. In Legendary Pictures' Godzilla, Godzilla now possesses gills so he can stay underwater indefinitely, but he closes them when he's on land and uses his lungs.  Godzilla's incarnation in Godzilla: Resurgence also portrayed with unusually large gills in his earlier developed form that eventually shrunks when he evolved to better form that enable him to adapted on land.

Flight/Jet Propulsion

In a memorable, and somewhat infamous scene in Godzilla vs. Hedorah, Godzilla used his atomic breath to fly by aiming it at the ground and lifting off like a rocket. How this ability works by manipulating nuclear energy within his body so his atomic breath projected in form of jet propulsion that strong enough to send him flying and catch up with the flying Hedorah.

Godzilla has used this ability two times outside of the said film; in the comic series Godzilla: Ongoing and in Godzilla: The Game, where it is called "Back Charge".

Revenant Physiology

In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack', Godzilla whom killed by Serizawa's Oxygen Destroyer eventually reanimated and possessed by restless souls of those whom killed or left to die at the hands of the Imperial Japanese Army during the Pacific War. Though his body appeared to be restored by the said restless souls back to the condition prior to disintegrated by the said chemical weapon upon possession, Godzilla has become undead version of his former self: The proof that Godzilla has become the undead is his eyes that covered by a white or gray film of mucous as if they suffer decomposion in spite of not affect the vision. Not only his physiology that supernaturally enhanced tenfold, as he now possesses unusual reflexes where when he pinned prematurely awakened Ghidorah, he reflexively swatted Mothra when the latter tried to approach him. Also, since he now become an undead, Godzilla is capable to remain alive even when in a state of being where death should be unavoidable: By the end of the film, Godzilla is revealed to still alive even after reduced into disembodied beating heart, a state where it's unlikely that the rest of his still-mortal incarnations able to survive in the same way (with exceptional of his Godzilla: Resurgence counterpart though in the latter's case, due to being composite creature that can regrow from pieces that broke off from his body).

This power is exclusively possessed by incarnation of Godzilla in Godzilla, Mothra, & King Ghidorah: Giant Monster All-Out Attack.




  • Starring in 30 films, Godzilla has appeared in more films than any other kaiju to date.
  • Godzilla is one of the most recognizable symbols of Japanese popular culture worldwide.
  • Although Godzilla's first film appearance was in Gojira, released in November third of 1954, he made his first official debut four months earlier, in July, when an earlier version of the film's script was read on a radio as an 11-part radio drama.
  • In 2004, as a part of the celebration of the release of Godzilla: Final Wars and the 50th anniversary of the franchise, Godzilla was given a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.
  • Godzilla's appearance has changed many times over the years. Some changes were subtle differences such as changes in the size of his dorsal plates and others which were much more dramatic, including Godzilla's overall size and appearance.
  • The 2014 Godzilla reboot marked the 60th anniversary of Godzilla.
  • Godzilla's size is inconsistent, changing from film to film and even from scene to scene for the sake of artistic license. To date, the largest Godzilla incarnation will be ShinGoji from the 2016 Godzilla film, Godzilla: Resurgence, coming in at 118.5 meters tall.
  • listed Godzilla as #1 on their "Top 10 Giant Movie Monsters" list.
    • They also listed the original 1954 Godzilla movie, Gojira, as #7 on their "Top 10 Sci-Fi Movies of the 1950s" list.
  • Among fights that Godzilla had over the course of history of the franchise, his most famous and shortest battle was against Zilla in Godzilla: Final Wars. In the said fight, Godzilla simply defeated Zilla by outsmarting it: He tricked Zilla to pounce on him with low-caliber atomic breath as distraction and once Zilla did, he send Zilla flying into the Sydney Opera House and finishes him off with his atomic breath. The most surprising fact in the said battle is, the battle only lasts 13 seconds.
    • Critics say that this short battle was meant to show Toho's displeasure towards Sony and TriStar with their handling of the Godzilla franchise. Others say the significant difference in size, speed, and abilities between the two showed it truly played out the way it should have.

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