Monster of the Day #45

Rodan wasn’t the second monster out of the Toho stables (that was Anguirus from the second Godzilla movie), but he was the first Toho Monster seen in color, and more importantly, the second Toho monster introduced in his own film.  One reason that I think Ghidrah the Three Headed Monster works so well is that Godzilla, Rodan and Mothra were all appearing together for the first time after starring in their own films, creating much more of a sense of a shared universe than if they had all been introduced in the Godzilla series.  Then add in Ghidrah, a monster so powerful that it took all three Earth monsters to defeat him.  (The inevitable decline of Ghidrah began with Monster Zero, when it was established that Godzilla and Rodan alone could whip him.  They should have stuck with all three monsters.)

  • Ericb

    My favorite Kaiju as a child (don’t ask me why, who knows how a little kid’s brian works). When we played monster I usually ended up being Rodan.

  • i really liked Rodan from the start because there were also giant bugs. I’m a sucker for giant bugs.

  • Gamera

    Yay! So glad Ken was able to obtain an emergency supply of more monsters after running out at 44 last week.

    I loved Rodan best when the one decided it would rather die than go on living without his/her mate. Rodan- greatest romantic movie ever!!!

  • The Rev. D.D.

    The scene in the flooded tunnel scared the bejeezus out of me when I saw this as a kid.

    Rodan is in my top five as far as Toho’s monsters, but his movie holds a special place in my heart, because it was the second of Toho’s movies I ever saw, second only to Godzilla ’85. A coworker of my dad’s taped it off of TBS’ Super Scary Saturday program with Grandpa Munster hosting. After the movie (easily one of Toho’s best ever), they played a “music video” for “Top Creature.” This consisted of a montage of scenes from the movie paired with Kenny Loggins’ hit single “Danger Zone.” At the time, I thought it was one of the greatest things ever. I don’t know how many times I watched that tape.

  • Elizabeth

    I hope Anguirus gets some MOTD love of his own soon. Always felt a little sorry for the poor guy, since it’s basically his job to show up first and get the shit beat out of him as a warmup.

  • Ericb

    I love Anguirus. He’s the Rodney Dangerfield of Kaiju. Aside from his debut he never got any respect from the writers at Toho.

  • He doesn’t DESERVE any respect. Come on guys. At least you’re not pining for King Seesar.

  • Rock Baker

    Rodan lever looked as good as he did in his first film. The revamped Rodan from Ghidrah and Monster Zero looked like a cheap knockoff, I could never figure out why they made such a drastic design change. (There was that smaller flying model in Destroy All Monsters that was used in the scene where he swoops down and collects a dolphin, that looked a bit more like the original -I’ve sometimes suspected that the island housed multiple Rodans since they were able to find other creatures that had been earlier destroyed, meaning this universe had to have multiple suriviving members of the same species.)

    In the U.S. we got Ghidrah and then Destroy All Monsters, and then Monster Zero in 1970. Think how bad THAT made Ghidrah look, being beat up by a halve dozen monsters and then being taken by only two! Tho Ghidrah did die in DAM, so maybe Monster Zero was his weaker kid brother or something.

    (Off topic)
    Gamera, I think I might’ve found that bigfoot movie that made you jump when the arm comes thru the window. Saturday night I watched Creature From Black Lake (1976), one of the better bigfoot movies. This one had a scene with a hunter in the cab of a van trying to radio for help. He got word from Sheriff Billy Carter (!), played by Jabootu fav Bill Thurmon, that help was on the way. The guy in the van relaxed and started to take a sigh, but at that exact moment the bigfoot hand came smashing thru the window of the van. The timing on this scene was perfect, and I almost jumped myself (happily, I wasn’t taking a drink at the moment). That made me remember your story, and this one was pretty creepy, so maybe the film you saw was Creature from Black Lake, with Jack Elam.

    And if anybody knows of a letterboxed version of Creature From Black Lake being availible, let me know!

  • Ericb

    Well King Seesar was silly looking while Anguirus was based on ankylosaurus which was a pretty cool looking animal. If anything Godzilla could have made good use of him by swinging him by his tale and impaling his opponents on Anguirus’ spikes.

  • Rock Baker

    Oh, who couldn’t love Angillas? (the spelling is a personal choice, but that’s how his name always sounded to me)

  • Gamera

    Rock, thanks! That sounds a lot like the film I saw and ’76 would be around the right time. I’ll have to give this one a look.

    I have to admit I always got Anguirus and Baragon/Barugon (one was a Gojira monster and the other the Gamera monster with the rainbow ray) confused.

    Though I laughed my butt off when the Big G and King Caesar/Seesar used Anguirus as a soccer ball in Final Wars and whacked poor Roden in the breadbasket.

  • HURRAY FOR RODAN! One of the most criminally under used Kaijus (right after Anguirus and Varan)

  • BeckoningChasm

    Varan? That’s pretty unbelievable.

    Also, what is this guy doing under Reviews?

  • Kirk

    Rev. D.D. – I’m glad someone else remembers that. I’ve tried to describe the Top Creature video to non-B-movie folks and I just get blank stares.

  • sandra

    Rock/Gamera – THE LEGEND OF BOGGY CRICK featured a hairy arm coming through a window. Its a semi-documentary made around 1972, about an Arkansas version of Bigfoot called The Fouke Monster.