Marvel Comics (September, 1977)WRITER:Doug Moench PENCILER: Herb Trimpe INKERS: Frank Giacoia & George Tuska COLORIST: Janice Cohen (although I’m using a black & white reprint LETTERER: John Costanza EDITOR: A. Goodwin
Injured from last issue, Godzilla storms through Seattle, but the Japanese scientist’s plan isn’t ready. Dum Dum, proving that’s just a nickname, comes up with and idea to lure Godzilla away from the city back to the ocean. Meanwhile, the scientist’s grandson is convinced Godzilla is a hero and only he can protect the King Of The Monsters from SHIELD.
What they got right: Humans in a Godzilla story seeking a solution other than “new type of weapon” was nice to see. It happens so rarely when even a black hole has been shown unable to stop Godzilla in the later movies. Sure, that weapon is coming but right now they use their wits to send Godzilla away and I approve.
What they got wrong: Rob, the scientist’s son. Using the Heisei movies as an example in the last paragraph works here because Moench’s Godzilla is closer to that series of movies. Godzilla isn’t necessarily evil but he’s not the guardian monster of the movies being produced when this comic came out, as I complained about last week. However, Rob is treating Godzilla like the guardian monster when he isn’t He fights monsters who are in his way and threatening his perceived territory, the same reason he attacks cities. It’s like Moench is trying to use Rob to turn Godzilla into the Hulk, only without Bruce Banner in the way, and it just doesn’t work for 1970s Godzilla. Instead Rob comes off as a real dumb kid, like the one in the original Gamera movie.
Recommendation: I’m still enjoying this comic and I’ve said that the Heisei era is the better written of the three Godzilla continuities. (Unless you count terrible usage of time-travel, of course.) So while this seems out of place for a 70’s Godzilla story it’s still shaping up to be a good take.