McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet
The McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet is an American fighter jet used by several countries around the world (including the United States, Canada, and Australia), initially manufactured by McDonnell Douglas, with Boeing later making an upgraded version dubbed the Super Hornet. The F/A-18 Hornet first appeared in kaiju movies in the 1998 American GODZILLA. Both the standard F/A-18A variant and the upgraded F/A-18E Super Hornets have appeared in other films since then, where they have often been utilized by the United States against both aerial and ground-based opponents.
A trio of F/A-18A Hornets, among the U.S. military's most powerful aerial vehicles, were dispatched to destroy Godzilla's nest in Madison Square Garden. Within six minutes, the entire building was completely annihilated, and all of the Baby Godzillas were killed in the explosion. However, the adult Godzilla emerged from underneath the city streets shortly afterward. Having secretly survived an earlier submarine attack, Godzilla looked down in anger and sorrow at its dead offspring. Enraged, Godzilla chased Niko Tatopoulos and his allies across New York City, and was led to the Brooklyn Bridge, where the F/A-18 Hornets were again summoned to destroy the monster as it was trapped in the suspension cables of the bridge. Two missiles from each craft were fired directly at Godzilla, but when the creature was still standing, the Hornets flew by again and unleashed their firepower again. Finally, Godzilla collapsed onto the street, dying from its injuries. The Hornets, successful in their mission to rid New York City of the threat posed by Godzilla, returned to their base while the monster finally succumbed to its wounds and died, surrounded by countless onlookers.
F/A-18E Super Hornets of the US Navy were among the aircraft present aboard the aircraft carrier USS Saratoga, taking part in the battle against the MUTOs in San Francisco alongside detachments of Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning IIs. Significant numbers of the aircraft were disabled by the MUTOs' electromagnetic pulses, falling to the ground and into San Francisco Bay.
F/A-18E Super Hornets from the U.S. Navy's Blue Diamonds squadron took part in the aerial battle against Rodan. Additional Hornets were tasked with escorting and guarding the USS Argo, and attempted to assist the F-35 Lightning IIs of Gold Squadron in defending the Argo from Rodan, only for several to be shot down in the process, alongside the entirety of Gold Squadron.
- Flight speed of Mach 1.7.
- Armed with a single M61A1 (Hornet) & M61A2 (Super Hornet) 20mm Vulcan cannon.
- The Hornet has 9 hardpoints for assorted missiles, bombs and electronic warfare equipment, while the Super Hornet has 11 hardpoints.
- Both variants have a combat range of 511 miles.
- The F/A-18 Hornet is among the only conventional military vehicles to have successfully killed a kaiju, although their successful use against Godzilla required multiple confirmed missile strikes from three F-18s to finally kill him while he was entangled in suspension cables. Other aerial vehicles that have successfully brought down a giant monster include the Curtiss F8C Helldiver biplane and UH-1H Iroquois helicopter, which killed King Kong in the 1933 and 1976 versions of King Kong, respectively, and the Super X3, which took part in the attack on Destoroyah at the climax of his battle with Godzilla that destroyed the monster’s wings and sent him plummeting to his death from a combination of the sheer cold of the freezer weapons and the ground superheated by Godzilla’s presence.
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