Toy: Godzilla 1989: S.H. MonsterArts (Bandai)


Godzilla 1989: S.H. MonsterArts

Japanese Toy Title

S.H. モンスターアーツ ゴジラ (1989)
[S.H. Monsuta Atsu Gojira (1989)]




Bandai / Tamashii Nations
20 centimeters


Godzilla vs. Biollante



By: Andrew Nguyen (submission)

One of the most popular Godzilla suit designs, the Bio-Goji Godzilla suit, which premiered in Godzilla vs Biollante (1989), served as the basis for all future Godzilla suits for the remainder of the VS series (from 1991 to 1995). Now this design has already appeared in the larger, aborted LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC sub line of SH MonsterArts in 2016. Around the time of SH MonsterArts SCV Biollante's release in 2020, though, advertisements of Biollante showed an outline of a Bio-Goji figure in a standard SH figure size. That started speculation that Bio-Goji would appear in the regular SH MonsterArts line, which finally happened in 2021 under the designation Godzilla 1989.


The figure is designed by Yuji Sakai, a veteran monster designer from the series who has worked on other SH MonsterArts releases. His design work makes for an excellent match to its movie counterpart. It also helps that they already had used the design in an SH MonsterArts release, even if it was in a larger scale, and thus knew what they needed to do when they shrank the figure to standard size. In addition, the designers made sure to scale this Godzilla figure to be smaller than the Burning Godzilla and Birth Godzilla figures (as Godzilla in 1989 was at 80 meters while the later VS films had him at 100 meters), which is an excellent touch. While the LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC figure does a good job resembling the Bio-Goji suit, the smaller figure improved on that resemblance particularly in the case of the legs which is more of a match to the Bio-Goji suit.

For those that already have the LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC figure, comparisons are inevitable with this release. On the issue of height, the regular Godzilla 1989 is ¾ the height of the LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC figure, with the head measuring to its shoulders. The LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC figure also has a bit of a longer neck while the tail seems a bit shorter and not as poseable as this release. As for the eyes, the two have different styles with the LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC figure a closer match to the movie. When looking at both from a distance it seems the LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC figure has a noticeably big body and thinner limbs while the normal sized figure strikes a better balance between the main body and the limbs. For the skin color, the Godzilla 1989 is a bit darker compared to the larger figure.


On the issue of articulation, the figure has good articulation and in certain respects a bit more movement compared to the LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC figure. The tail and arms have a good amount of movement while the head has less articulation in that it can move up and down fine but difficulty going from left to right even in comparison to the 1995 figures. For the legs, the articulation aligns with the movements one would see in the movie. The figure, like most of the SH MonsterArts, has excellent stability and unlike the earlier 1995 figures, it is almost equivalent to the suit itself although a bit more flexible.


Sadly, there are no accessories for this figure unlike its LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC counterpart.


While the colors on the figure are mostly faithful to the movie there are some sections on the body that are a bit lighter in terms of paint applied in comparison to other sections. Some figures may have mismatched eyes although it usually occurs on the left eye. It is barely noticeable in the distance but if one gets a close look of Godzilla 1989's face then they can see the issue with the eyes. In addition, there is the possibility one hand has darker claws than the other although reviewers have said it was not as bad as with the LIGHT, SOUND AND MUSIC Godzilla 1989. The dorsal fins have accurate paint with only a few exceedingly small blotches here and there. While at times the blood on the teeth may not be a problem and in fact it makes him look more bloodthirsty, it is an annoyance when comparing it with the look in the movie.


Aside from the lack of accessories and the potential mishap with the left eye, the figure is an excellent match to its on screen counterpart and it also scales well with SH MonsterArts Biollante. Sadly, it does have a high price tag considering the lack of accessories. It is recommended if one is willing to tolerate a few inevitable mistakes.

Rating: Star Rating