Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

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Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:52 am

So, I remember around the time G14 came out, there were some mild controversies of how Americanized the idea was that the nuclear bomb testing was “excused” by the cover up in universe that it was weapons being used on Godzilla. Obviously, G14 and KOTM are American made films and subsequently are neutered down.

However, I’m wondering if anyone sort of takes issue with what KOTM did with radiation and nukes.

For example, the way that nukes are casually presented as something good to use to power up Godzilla (“Give us all the nukes you have”) seems very cavalier. Not once does anyone even remotely talk about how catastrophic in its own right detonating an undersea nuke like that in the hollow earth might be. If there was ever a time for a debate, or interesting one, that could’ve led to some interesting character development, then was the time. For all the supposed environmental messages, this seemed so overtly counter intuitive. Godzilla also eventually explodes with radiation in the climax (he’s going thermonuclear) and we can surmise that Boston (and the east coast) by proxy will now be a nuclear wasteland.

Likewise, I forget when it happens, but I remember that at a certain point, Dr. Russel makes a point about radiation somehow being good for the environment. She notes that “life follows radiation”, which is possibly the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. Radiation actively destroys life, and kills it. That’s why it’s so dangerous. The point she was trying to make, was that the Titans, by destroying cities and humans, allow areas to be reclaimed by nature instead of humanity. But that’s not radiation.

I can also buy Godzilla, Rodan and the other creatures being radioactive, but it was also very strange making Mothra also a nuclear beastie. Funnily enough, King Ghidorah doesn’t seem to have any relation to nuclear power, he’s electrical baby.

Contrast to how seriously radiation was treated in Shin. Same for things like 1984, or heck even 1998. I’m not saying the film is bad for this reason, and I’m not in the camp that Godzilla should always be a serious nuclear allegory, but I just find it all so jarring.

I’ll admit, as the only American, I could help but feel slightly awkward watching a lot of these supposed cavalier mentions with a Japanese audience.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby SG-17 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 4:08 am

Its implied that the type of radiation that is associated with the Titans is different from your standard gamma radiation. We see shots of SanFran and Las Vegas being overgrown with huge plants, plants that would never grow there with or without humans. We also see in the credits that a rainforest appeared in the Sahara (which in reality only became a desert in the last 15,000 years), and the Amazon was being restored.

Its not so much that these areas are being reclaimed by nature as we'd think, but rather the Titans are using their abilities to repair these areas.

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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby JAGzilla » Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:12 am

While the whole deal with radiation causing impossible explosions of new life like rainforests growing in the Sahara or an overnight rebounding of fish stocks is just plain bonkers, the idea of radiation as a point-blank destroyer of life isn't accurate, either. Chernobyl, for example, is known for having thriving wildlife populations, with the radiation having fairly limited health effects aside from some serious mutations early on.

https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/04/060418-chernobyl-wildlife-thirty-year-anniversary-science/

So cities and areas that the kaiju clear of humans, even if they are irradiated, do seem likely to fill right up with healthy-ish plants and animals.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:31 am

JAGzilla wrote:While the whole deal with radiation causing impossible explosions of new life like rainforests growing in the Sahara or an overnight rebounding of fish stocks is just plain bonkers, the idea of radiation as a point-blank destroyer of life isn't accurate, either. Chernobyl, for example, is known for having thriving wildlife populations, with the radiation having fairly limited health effects aside from some serious mutations early on.

[url][https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/04/060418-chernobyl-wildlife-thirty-year-anniversary-science//url]

So cities and areas that the kaiju clear of humans, even if they are irradiated, do seem likely to fill right up with healthy-ish plants and animals.

Hmm, well hey you learn some new things everyday! Okay that makes a little more sense then.

The dialogue of radiation brings life though is to riduclous to me tbh.
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Rodan95 wrote:The Shobijin are sat on by a fatass explorer and killed. Mothra is pissed and destroys Japan.

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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby Olzh26 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:30 am

SG-17 wrote:Its implied that the type of radiation that is associated with the Titans is different from your standard gamma radiation. We see shots of SanFran and Las Vegas being overgrown with huge plants, plants that would never grow there with or without humans. We also see in the credits that a rainforest appeared in the Sahara (which in reality only became a desert in the last 15,000 years), and the Amazon was being restored.

Its not so much that these areas are being reclaimed by nature as we'd think, but rather the Titans are using their abilities to repair these areas.

Radiation in our understanding also restores the ecosystem. Surprisingly, in places that have undergone nuclear radiation, there is a very rich fauna

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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby Gojira-Fan » Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:42 am

Yeah, I overall enjoy the movie but that was one aspect I really can't forgive.

I guess the one criticism I would have of this film is that the camp/outlandish aspects sort of overshadow the gravity. The same criticism can apply to how the Oxygen Destroyer is used.

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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby vibramrunner » Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:57 am

LSD Jellyfish wrote:The dialogue of radiation brings life though is to riduclous to me tbh.


It's completely rediculous, lol. I've been watching Chernobyl on HBO, which has been fantastic, and it really brings you up close and personal to the devastation the radiation caused. The core of the reactor was so strong it would kill a person within minutes.. Was truly heartbreaking to see they had to send soldiers back into Chernobyl to shoot people's pets, and any other animals, because the radioactivity could spread to humans.

I do get why, from a storyline perspective, they made up these fake radiation molecules. Skull Island has to be explained somehow. But did it have to be radiation, specifically?

It is also true that areas uninhabitable for humans due to radiation experience bounce backs. That's because we humans are so destructive (which is why Emma wanted to kill us all, honestly can't blame her sometimes) to wildlife that our not being there, even with the radiation, makes it a net positive for animals. But it's certainly not because of any positive health effects of radiation.

Given Godzilla's Japanese origins, the radiation plot points are... something. This whole thing has gone full-blown Showa though, so..

Added in 5 minutes 31 seconds:
Gojira-Fan wrote:
I guess the one criticism I would have of this film is that the camp/outlandish aspects sort of overshadow the gravity. The same criticism can apply to how the Oxygen Destroyer is used.


The oxygen destroyer should never have been a thing in this movie in the first place. If they would have 1.) opened the movie with Rodan leveling the city and 2.) had Godzilla lose the first fight to Ghidorah (with Rodan's help), Godzilla could have been nuked back to life after sinking to the bottom of the ocean, no oxygen destroyer necessary. I definitely have a lot of editing ideas, lol.
Last edited by vibramrunner on Sun Jun 02, 2019 7:04 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby crockalley » Sun Jun 02, 2019 8:08 am

Yes, I’m very uncomfortable with the casual use of nuclear weapons as a good-guy power-up. Like you say, they don’t all have to be nuclear allegories, but that is the root origin of the Godzilla franchise. It seems a bit of a betrayal to nonchalantly throw nuclear weapons and radiation around without touching on the horrors.

And I can’t believe they’re still doing the eco-terrorist bad guy trope in 2019. Like, that woman was right, humans are destroying the planet and it doesn’t look like we’re doing anything to change our ways.

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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby Mr_Goji_and_Watch » Sun Jun 02, 2019 8:23 am

It's so irresponsible and poorly handled. Imagine if Honda saw this lol.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby MechaGoji Bro7503 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 8:56 am

It's my biggest problem with the two MV Godzilla films - just having a nuke and Godzilla in the same film does not equate a good, faithful message.

The Oxygen Destroyer is a big problem too, the fish it killed didn't even turn into skeletons or disintegrate. The name itself should raise some concerns, especially if the US military can create more and the fact that they launch it before they tell Monarch. Another example of tossing around a WMD like a frisbee.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby Mr_Goji_and_Watch » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:00 am

MechaGoji Bro7503 wrote:It's my biggest problem with the two MV Godzilla films - just having a nuke and Godzilla in the same film does not equate a good, faithful message.

The Oxygen Destroyer is a big problem too, the fish it killed didn't even turn into skeletons or disintegrate. The name itself should raise some concerns, especially if the US military can create more and the fact that they launch it before they tell Monarch. Another example of tossing around a WMD like a frisbee.


1954 has the unintential Oppenheimer vibes with the Oxygen Destroyer and it plays into the themes of the film, meanwhile in KOTM it's just a literal plot device so that Serizawa could help save the world.... with a nuke
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby MechaGoji Bro7503 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:14 am

Mr_Goji_and_Watch wrote:
MechaGoji Bro7503 wrote:It's my biggest problem with the two MV Godzilla films - just having a nuke and Godzilla in the same film does not equate a good, faithful message.

The Oxygen Destroyer is a big problem too, the fish it killed didn't even turn into skeletons or disintegrate. The name itself should raise some concerns, especially if the US military can create more and the fact that they launch it before they tell Monarch. Another example of tossing around a WMD like a frisbee.


1954 has the unintential Oppenheimer vibes with the Oxygen Destroyer and it plays into the themes of the film, meanwhile in KOTM it's just a literal plot device so that Serizawa could help save the world.... with a nuke

Bugs me even more that in the original Serizawa's biggest fear was the OD being a weapon of war...... and here we are with it in a missle.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby Monster X » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:18 am

I think the script writer read Planet Hulk one too many times.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby kaijukurt » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:38 am

Monster X wrote:I think the script writer read Planet Hulk one too many times.


The Monsterverse definitely has comparisons to American sci-fi/comic book portrayals of nuclear energy.

Of course, it should be noted that in the senator meeting, Serizawa characterizes nuclear testing as something to look down upon.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby Omegamorph » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:18 pm

it's no different to later showa films. The moment godzilla, the ghost of the nuclear horror, becomes a hero, most other things are fair game. Including what they do in this film

what IS bad is the OD has no set up whatsoever... and you can cut it out of the film entirely without the slightest effect BUT make the film more linear.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:02 pm

Using the Showa Era Godzilla as a defense of this, is kind of misleading though. Post DAM, I’m pretty sure they completely drop any reference to Godzilla being a nuclear oriented creature; and this is again a symptom of generalizing showa Godzilla as one era, rather then desperate parts; even in SoG Godzilla was portrayed as a fearful nuclear monster.

The idea that Godzilla going thermonuclear in Boston is absolutely astounding; note how in the Heisei Era, Meltdown Godzilla (the easiest comparison) was treated as an end of the world disaster, and it was explicitly mentioned at the end that had it not been for Junior the Tokyo area would be completely uninhabitable.
To G14’s credit, they took the subject fairly seriously; with the opening Janjira nuclear disaster, and it’s Chernobyl imagery. Same thing with the idea of cavelier usage of nukes, it’s what winds up destroying SF.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby _JNavs_ » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:11 pm

Well at the end of KOTM Boston is completely demolished...like completely donezo, like Final Wars level of leveled.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby Mr_Goji_and_Watch » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:43 pm

_JNavs_ wrote:Well at the end of KOTM Boston is completely demolished...like completely donezo, like Final Wars level of leveled.


And the film basically decides to gloss over it, vs G14 using 9/11-esque imagery to reinforce how destroyed the area was
Last edited by Mr_Goji_and_Watch on Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby _JNavs_ » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:52 pm

Mr_Goji_and_Watch wrote:
_JNavs_ wrote:Well at the end of KOTM Boston is completely demolished...like completely donezo, like Final Wars level of leveled.


And the film basically decides to gloss over it, vs G14 using 9/11-esque imagery to reinforce how destroyed the area was

Same way G:Raids Again glossed over the destruction Anguirus and Godzilla caused, vs the nuclear holocaust themes of Gojira 54.

I don't think it's fair to criticize KOTM for being different when compared to the darker grittier "original" 2014 film.

As it happens in almost every era, minus Millennium.
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Re: Radiation/Nuke Issues in the Monsterverse

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sun Jun 02, 2019 3:52 pm

_JNavs_ wrote:Well at the end of KOTM Boston is completely demolished...like completely donezo, like Final Wars level of leveled.

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_JNavs_ wrote:The MV is like cheap imitation crabmeat, it tastes good, but it isn't real, while Shin is kino peak Japanese performance.

Rodan95 wrote:The Shobijin are sat on by a fatass explorer and killed. Mothra is pissed and destroys Japan.


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