In the futuristic world of 1982, humankind learned, much to its utter dismay, that a collapsed star dubbed Gorath was on a collision course with Earth. The United Nations planned to invoke a radical bid for survival: they would have to alter the orbit of the planet in order to escape the path of the incoming celestial terror. While several attempts to study the approaching star were met to no avail, huge rockets were erected in Antarctica, prepared to thrust planet Earth to safety.
As the ignition began, an unexpected twist of fate shook the very foundations of humanity's plan for survival. The intense flames cracked and crumbled the icy tomb of a slumbering beast. Disturbed from its rest, the giant walrus Maguma was furious. Enraged, the animal attacked several of the bases lying in the vicinity of the enormous rockets. A nearby VTOL ship witnessed the destruction that the creature's wrath wrought upon this much-needed cure for Earth's impending doom. Realizing the creature was acting only on instinct but that it had to be stopped, a powerful laser was released straight into the flesh of the beast. Maguma was killed by the blast, and his brief reign of terror finally subsided.
Powers / Weapons
Maguma boasted two giant tusks that protruded from its mouth.
Despite their visual formidableness, the sharp fangs were not used as weapons when Maguma attacked the arctic base. Instead, the creature used its large flippers to destroy the structures present.
Background and Trivia
The huge mammal was portrayed by suit actor Haruo Nakajima.
The head of Maguma was modeled by Teizo Toshimitsu while the body was done by the brothers Koei Yagi and Kanji Yagi.
Producer Tomoyuki Tanaka is the one who came up with the idea to add a giant monster to Gorath, in this case the giant walrus Maguma. The idea was born from the fact that past kaiju films had done well at Toho, such as Rodan (1956) and Mothra (1961). This information can be found in the 1997 book Age of the Gods (self-published).
In the 2000 publication Large Picture Book of Godzilla: Toho Special Effects Movie World (ISBN: 4873765587), Maguma's powers are listed as "Huge Fangs" (巨大なキバ - Kyodai na Kiva) and "Super Strength" (怪力 - Kairiki).
When creating the American version of the film, Brenco Pictures dropped the monster Maguma almost entirely from the movie Gorath. This sequence is replaced by using some of the destruction footage to convey an earthquake and then having the scientists, in the VTOL, fire lasers into a ravine as a result. Despite this, the corpse of Maguma can be briefly seen during this segment.
Rarely listed in English, the 2005 publication Godzilla: Toho Monster Picture Book (ISBN: 4092800525) cites the English name of "Maguma" for the kaiju.