Godzilla: Rulers of Earth #24
 Chris Mowry
Pencils: Matt Frank Inks: Matt Frank
Language: English Release: 2015
Publisher: IDW Publishing Pages: 32
Colors: Priscilla Tramontano Cover: Matt Frank
Monster Appearances: Aliens, SDF, & Misc Appearances:
Godzilla, Trilopods, Jet Jaguar, Gigan, King Ghidorah Cryog
Anthony Romero

The second to last issue for Godzilla: Rulers of Earth, and just one issue away from having the longest running title on the character. This comic breaks the mold a bit from past ones by focusing much more on the human element, giving some added weight to the issue to follow. Despite being build up heavy, the issue does feature some gorgeous Matt Frank art of the various kaiju through out.

For the plot, the issue begins with Steven Woods preparing an evac mission into Los Angeles. The area is currently under siege from multiple Trilopods who have taken on the characteristics of Godzilla. With more pods descending on the area, the fear is an alien spawned conflict unlike anything Earth has seen before. Meanwhile, Godzilla, severly weakened from the Trilopods feeding on him, awakes ready to make a stand against them...

While author Chris Mowry has given us popcorn entertainment issue after issue, this one does pause a bit to give some build up to the finale. As a trade paperback, this will probably work out well. As a solo outing, it feels like chapter 1 without chapter 2. Comics have been written with trades in mind for quite sometime, though. Regardless, this issue does a good job of adding some extra sense of doom with the evac mission, and adds a LOT of needed back story to the Cryog. In fact, the whole story to Rhizon and Emperor Karkaro is showcased here, detailing how the former rose to power and some faults of the latter to his own people. This back story includes a sequence showing the destruction of their race. Now if you want to avoid spoilers, this is a good time to head around. That said, the destroyer of the world is King Ghidorah. The Three-Headed Monster shown looks like the Showa version rather than the Heisei appearance seen earlier with Mecha-King Ghidorah. So it's possible this could be a second King Ghidorah, or just artistic license taken in how its presented.

As for the art, there is a lot of focus on the human and alien elements. Matt Frank is at the top of his game at both, and has really defined the Cryog aliens at this stage. Still, nothing beats his efforts on the kaiju, and this issue is no exception. His Showa King Ghidorah is wonderful. From the more feathery scales to the manes, the Three-Headed beast looks excellent. The Trilopods take somewhat center stage of the beasts in this issue, in particular the ones copying Godzilla. The creatures have a somewhat complex design, owning to their copying nature, and they look consistent through out. There is also some great shadow details done on their initial assault with the SDF.

For the covers, this issue has two stellar ones to pick from. The main one is done by Matt Frank and showcases Gigan imposed above while Jet Jaguar stands over defeated Trilopods as the sun sets. Stellar cover, and in most cases would be the top pick... but the alternate by Jeff Zornow is excellent this go around. Composed of mostly black, it shows the Trilopods wrapped around a dangling Godzilla. The image is novel for something on the character, and appropriatly alien.

Overall, while the issue before the finale can sometimes act like a long climax, in this case it's building up to the final confrontation. Assuming the next issue fires on all cylinders, readers are in for a treat, although this issue feels like a minor waiting game until it arrives.

As a side note, it's been awhile since artist Matt Frank has slipped in a generous amount of nods toward the fandom, but this issue has a healthy dose. The billboards in the Los Angeles area include one of "Orochi", likely a nod to the beast from Yamato Takeru (1994), one for "Kumi", likely a nod to actress Kumi Mizuno, and one for "Doll of the Vampire", likely a nod to Vampire Doll (1970).

Variant Covers