Godzilla: Monsters & Protectors - Summer Smash
Godzilla: Monsters & Protectors - Summer Smash is a one-shot comic book from IDW Publishing which concluded the story begun in the miniseries Godzilla: Monsters & Protectors and continued in Godzilla: Monsters & Protectors - All Hail the King!. It was published on July 26, 2023.
Ahh, summer vacation. Cedric's ready for sunny beaches, cool drinks, and not being at school! Nothing could go wrong... short of a Xilien invasion! Between alien attacks, maybe-evil robots, and the return of the scariest monster Cedric's ever had to face, it's going to take him, his friends, and all Earth's protectors to fight back! If only they could find Godzilla... An extra-length one-shot completing the Godzilla: Monsters & Protectors in the perfect Godzilla adventure for middle graders!
In what he declares to be his final vlog, Cedric Nishimura reintroduces his friends Anderson Scott and Emily Hill and the trio's psychic link with Godzilla, as well as the alien Xiliens' designs on Earth. Following Godzilla and King Caesar's defeat of King Ghidorah, the Xiliens launched an all-out attack on Earth's armies. Despite humanity vastly outnumbering them, their superior technology gave them the advantage. The aliens ceased their attack after a week, establishing a base in Hokkaido and leaving humanity with one month to surrender. During that span, Jet Jaguar, a robot built by another alien race to repel King Ghidorah, crash-landed in Thailand. Searching available data streams for information on King Ghidorah, it discovered Cedric's vlogs and flew to Tokyo to meet him. It found him, Anderson, and Emily at a botanical garden in Tokyo, landing dramatically in front of them. Emily managed to communicate with it using Japanese Sign Language, allowing it to convey its mission and desire for instructions from Cedric. He asks it to defend the Earth from the Xilien army instead.
After flying the kids to their school campus, empty due to their summer break, Jet Jaguar expresses doubt that it can defeat an entire army, though it is resolved to try anyway. At the same time, humanity attempts bombing the Xilien base, only to be foiled by their force field. In response, the Xilien commander unveils the upgraded Mecha-King Ghidorah, with which he plans to subdue all of Japan before wiping out all resistance on the rest of the planet. As Cedric predicts, the space monster's return awakens Godzilla, who intercepts him in Iwate Prefecture. Jet Jaguar flies them to the battlefield, where they are greeted by the Shobijin, who announce that Mothra has regained her full strength. She joins the battle with a barrage of lasers, and is followed by Jet Jaguar, who to everyone's astonishment grows to the size of a kaiju and punches Mecha-King Ghidorah's central head. Before the heroic trio can concentrate their efforts, however, Mecha-King Ghidorah fires rays from his mechanical head's eyes that force Jet Jaguar to return to its previous size, then drives Mothra back with Gravity Beams. He then concentrates his efforts on Godzilla, buffering him with Gravity Beams and gale-force winds. Angered, Godzilla retaliates with atomic breath, then rips off his mechanical head. Jet Jaguar grows again and flies the wounded cyborg into space, hurling him far away from the Earth. With their greatest weapon vanquished, the Xiliens are helpless before Godzilla and Mothra, who easily wipe out their base. The Xilien commander admits defeat to the kids, the Shobijin, and Jet Jaguar, but vows to return one day.
Cedric eagerly awaits the next world-threatening monster, but the Shobijin explain that with the Xiliens defeated, Godzilla will return to his slumber at the bottom of the sea. He will awaken only if the kids' generation fails to improve the health of the planet, which will force him to wipe out humanity. Jet Jaguar, Mothra, and potentially King Caesar will face any new monsters in his place. Cedric is dejected, feeling his importance has ended, but they reassure him that the task of reversing humanity's environment destruction is no less significant. After returning them to Tokyo, Jet Jaguar drives the remaining Xiliens off the planet. Cedric closes his vlog optimistically, asserting that one person can make a difference and collective action adds up.
Weapons, vehicles, and races
- Summer Smash was originally intended to be another miniseries before being condensed into a one-shot. According to author Erik Burnham, the original plan was for Mechagodzilla to be featured alongside Jet Jaguar; once the miniseries became a one-shot, Mechagodzilla was cut while Mecha-King Ghidorah, whose appearance was already foreshadowed in the previous miniseries, was selected instead. More monsters were initially considered to partake in the battle against the Xiliens, but had to be cut for time. Erik Burnham also wished to work in a cameo from Rodan, but was unable to find room to do so.
- The toy Cedric plays with while talking about Jet Jaguar resembles Red Alone, the monster who evolved into the robot during the writing process for Godzilla vs. Megalon.
- The Vabaruda, Zagreth's ship in Godzilla Island, makes a cameo appearance during a dogfight between Xilien UFOs and human fighter jets.
- One of the MeToob thumbnails shown next to Cedric's vlog shows the victory screen from the end of Godzilla: Monster of Monsters; the other shows two Black Hole Planet 3 Aliens laughing.
- Mothra fires a trio of lasers from three gems between her eyes, an ability usually reserved for Mothra Leo.
- Jet Jaguar was previously considered to appear as a toy in Cedric’s room in the first series, similar to the plush Hedorah’s appearance in All Hail the King! #4. Ultimately, this was scrapped to allow Jet Jaguar’s usage in a future story, which materialized as Summer Smash.
- Erik Burnham initially attempted to integrate Wi-Fi/text-based communication into Jet Jaguar’s speech, but Toho mandated that Jet Jaguar's communication be limited to sign language.
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