S.H.MonsterArts Godzilla 2000 and Heisei Mothra revealed

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(Go straight to the bottom of the article if you want all the photos.)

It’s hard enough keeping up with the news on Western toy lines with Tamashii revealing S.H.MonsterArts figures with no fanfare at Wonderfest. Import Monsters always catches ‘em, though. I’ve got to figure out where to keep an eye out.

Anyway, they revealed a Heisei-era Mothra from 1992′s Godzilla vs. Mothra (not entirely unexpected, since Battra was revealed last week) and also a new Godzilla based on his appearance in Godzilla 2000. If you’ve never seen it, it’s actually one of the most entertaining Godzilla films out there, especially in the modern era. The dubbing is good because the film had an actual American release. It’s a great movie to introduce someone to Godzilla with.

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I’m not a huge fan of the 2000 design. I prefer Godzilla’s traditional “leaf” spines to the crazy jagged projections; I don’t like the green skin; and I really dislike the rose-colored hue of the spikes. Fortunately, all of that is relatively downplayed on this figure, which is actually based on the original design maquette created by sculptor Yuji Sakai during the development of Godzilla 2000. So while it’s not a realistic 1:1 translation of the movie design, it’s arguably cooler than that.

And they seem to have articulated the hell out of Goji this time around, right down to the fingers – we haven’t seen that on a SHMA figure yet. Sakai sculpts almost all the S.H.MonsterArts stuff and this is one of his favorite G designs to sculpt (for obvious reasons, since it was his design), so I’m not surprised it seems to have gotten a lot of love.

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While I’m not a huge fan of this design – I was hoping for the “Kiryugoji” version, which is similar to this one but features charcoal skin and bone-colored spines – I’m finding myself pretty excited by this figure. It looks fantastic and badass. And I don’t have to worry about a red breath weapon, since I’ve already got one from the Godzilla effects pack.

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Mothra I’m not quite as excited about. I really, really wanted a Showa Mothra to go with Godzilla 1964. However, I will concede that to anyone but the most detail-oriented fan, the difference between the 1964 Mothra and the 1992 Mothra is not something you would notice unless you had both of them side-by-side. 

That said, my enthusiasm for this line will definitely start to wane if we don’t get some more Showa monsters, so I sincerely hope Toho and Tamashii are trying to work that out. In the meantime, at this point I wouldn’t be surprised if Titanosaurus shows up sooner rather than later.

As for this Mothra, I’ll get it, and honestly it will probably be fine as a Showa stand-in until I get that version.

Thanks again to the very alert folks at Import Monsters for breaking the story.

Comments now closed (11)

  • So is this "what you see is what you get"? I want Mothra, but it will be hard to throw down $60+ if there isn't even a flight stand for this dainty figure.

    • It might come with a flight stand. These are just the prototypes – we don't know what they'll come with.

      That said, accessories are increasingly rare with S.H.MonsterArts. In fact, not one figure since King Kong has included anything aside from the monster itself, although the Destoroyah Evolution set is arguably an accessory pack.

  • I must admit, while I like the Godzilla 2000 look, it is weird they're basing it on Sakai's maquette and not the movie suit. Is it possible the maquette look has sold better in merchandising? Or are they just placating Sakai? Or did Sakai offer them a pre-existing sculpt he'd done and cut them a break on the cost of sculpting? All questions we will likely never know the answer to.

    • I think for the super-hardcore Godzilla fans, the Millennium look is not that popular, and Bandai has kind of done that version and the Final Wars version to death over the last ten years, so I think it's kind of a "best of both worlds" thing: fans get a SHMonsterArts 2000 look, fans who have bought and re-bought that design get something new.

  • Man… the articulation on the Millennium sculpt looks great, but I really don't like the design. I'm sure holding out hope for a GMK or Return/1985 sculpt is dumb, but… well, I'll be dumb. Really it's kind of a relief that they're producing a figure I don't want, because sweet father, just getting the figures I want in this line is going to end up costing me nearly a grand with shipping factored in.

    I wonder if they're not doing Showa figures because Revoltech's got those rights tied up. Note that Revoltech never got the rights to do an actual Godzilla figure, and that's the only Showa era sculpt Tamashii has produced.

    • I had a whole section of this post that I decided to delete speculating on the rights issues in relation to Kaiyodo's Revoltech stuff.

      I'm not so sure it's actually an issue. From what I can tell from IDW's licensing experience with their Godzilla comics, you basically license the monsters individually, but you don't license them by era. So if you have the license for Mothra, you can do the Showa, Heisei, or Millennium version. Since we're getting a Heisei Mothra, my guess it the license isn't an issue (or maybe it was, but it isn't now). (Note – the Mechagodzillas are an exception, because Toho considers all three to be separate characters – and in fairness, they're all pretty different.)

      As for why we're getting a Heisei Mothra instead of a '64 Mothra to go with Godzilla '64, I suspect Tamashii is making a real effort to complete the Heisei line-up. This Mothra is meant to go with Battra.

  • I LOVE the Millennium look and wasn't aware it wasn't popular. WHEN are these supposed to be released?

    • Godzilla next March, Mothra in April (they'll each be released a month earlier in Japan, so if you order it from there you'll get it sooner).

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