- "Monster Zero" redirects here. For the film originally released under that title in the United States, see Invasion of Astro-Monster. "Ghidorah" also redirects here. For other uses of the name, see Ghidorah (disambiguation).
Widely considered to be Godzilla's arch-nemesis, King Ghidorah made his debut in Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, where he arrived on Earth inside a meteor and prepared to destroy it just as he had done to Venus thousands of years in the past. He was driven off by the combined might of Godzilla, Rodan and Mothra, but returned in Invasion of Astro-Monster as a pawn of the Xiliens in their invasion of Earth. King Ghidorah was unleashed on Earth once again by the Xiliens, along with Godzilla and Rodan, now under the invaders' control as well, but a group of humans managed to sever the aliens' hold on the monsters. Godzilla and Rodan teamed up against King Ghidorah again, sending him back into the void of space. In Godzilla vs. Gigan, King Ghidorah was now under the control of the M Space Hunter Nebula Aliens, who deployed him alongside the cyborg monster Gigan to assault the Earth. Once again, King Ghidorah was beaten by Godzilla, this time aided by Anguirus, and retreated back into space with Gigan. In Zone Fighter, King Ghidorah was one of the Garogas' Terror-Beasts, and did battle with Zone Fighter twice, managing to escape with his life. In the chronologically final film of the Showa series, Destroy All Monsters, King Ghidorah was unleashed by the Kilaaks in a desperate final attempt to defend their base of operations from Godzilla and the Earth monsters, only to be killed in battle by their combined might.
Toho brought King Ghidorah back for the Heisei series in Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, where he was now the pawn of time-traveling terrorists and the result of three genetically engineered creatures called Dorats being fused together by a hydrogen bomb explosion. The Futurians unleashed King Ghidorah in Japan, demanding for the nation's surrender, but their plot was interrupted when Godzilla appeared and battled King Ghidorah. After destroying the Futurians' time machine, Godzilla decapitated King Ghidorah's middle head and shredded his wings, leaving the creature comatose in the ocean. A defector from the Futurians, Emmy Kano, managed to salvage King Ghidorah's remains in the future and revive him as the cybernetic Mecha-King Ghidorah, then brought him back to the present to battle Godzilla. King Ghidorah was later featured as the antagonist in Rebirth of Mothra III, where he was once again a malevolent space monster, this time seeking to feed on the life forces of human children. King Ghidorah fought and nearly killed Mothra Leo, who traveled back to the Cretaceous in an attempt to destroy King Ghidorah while he was younger and weaker. After seemingly killing Cretaceous King Ghidorah, Leo returned to the present only to find King Ghidorah still alive and well. Leo then transformed into his most powerful form, Armor Mothra, and finally destroyed King Ghidorah.
King Ghidorah's only appearance in the Millennium series came in Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, where he was one of the three Guardian Monsters that fought to defend Japan from Godzilla, alongside Baragon and Mothra. King Ghidorah was teased in the second entry of the GODZILLA anime trilogy, and appeared as the main antagonist in the trilogy's final entry, GODZILLA: The Planet Eater. King Ghidorah was also teased through a cave painting in the second film in the MonsterVerse, Kong: Skull Island, went on to star as the villain of Godzilla: King of the Monsters, the sequel to Legendary Pictures' Godzilla.
This is an overview page. To view information on specific incarnations of King Ghidorah, please visit the King Ghidorah incarnations subpages.
- 1 Name
- 2 Design
- 3 Personality
- 4 Origins
- 5 Incarnations
- 6 History
- 6.1 Showa Series
- 6.2 Heisei Series
- 6.3 Godzilla Island
- 6.4 Millennium Series
- 6.5 Post-Millennium Series
- 6.6 MonsterVerse
- 7 Abilities
- 8 Filmography
- 9 Video Games
- 10 Books
- 11 Comics
- 12 Gallery
- 13 Sightings
- 14 Roar
- 15 In Other Languages
- 16 Trivia
- 17 Videos
- 18 Notes
- 19 References
- 20 Comments
The "Ghidorah" (ギドラ part of King Ghidorah's name comes from the Japanese word for "hydra" Gidora) (ヒドラ, which shares two of its three katakana characters with "Ghidorah." It also, coincidentally or not, sounds very similar to the Hidora)Russian pronunciation of "hydra" (Гидра, ˈɡʲidrə). The addition of "King" (キング) to his name may have been influenced by King Dragon (キング・ドラゴン, the name given to Kingu Doragon)Zmey Gorynych, upon which King Ghidorah's design was based, in the Japanese version of the Soviet film Ilya Muromets.
King Ghidorah's name was pronounced several different ways in the English-dubbed versions of his first three films. King Ghidorah was referred to as "Ghidrah" in the American English-dubbed version of Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, presumably because it sounded more like "hydra." In the American dubbed version of Invasion of Astro-Monster, he was called "King Ghidorah," with the "o" syllable unemphasized. He was simply called "Ghidorah" in the English dubs for Destroy All Monsters, with the "o" stressed in the international English dub, but again with an unemphasized "o" in the American English dub. In Omni Productions' English dubs for the films of the Heisei and Millennium series, he is referred to as "King Ghidorah," with the "o" emphasized.
In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, the guardian monster Ghidorah's name is spelled in kanji but pronounced the same: 魏怒羅 (Gidora). When Ghidorah is revived to fight Godzilla again, he is now known as "King Ghidorah."
In the GODZILLA anime trilogy, the "King" is dropped from the monster's name and he is consistently referred to as just Ghidorah (ギドラ, although one of his titles refers to him as the Golden King Gidora) (金色の王 and the character Kin'iro no Ō)Metphies does at one point call him King Ghidorah (王たるギドラ. The English plot summary on the trilogy's official website does refer to him as "King Ghidorah" in English, however. Ōtaru Gidora)
In Invasion of Astro-Monster, the Xiliens refer to King Ghidorah as Monster Zero (怪物０ Kaibutsu Zero), which has become a popular alias for the monster, particularly in the West where the film was typically known as Monster Zero or Godzilla vs. Monster Zero. He is again referred to as Monster Zero by the scientific organization Monarch in Godzilla: King of the Monsters.
- Main articles: King Ghidorah/Showa#Development, King Ghidorah/Heisei#Development, Mecha-King Ghidorah#Development, King Ghidorah/Rebirth of Mothra III#Development, King Ghidorah/GMK#Development, King Ghidorah/Anime#Development.
King Ghidorah is a golden dragon monster with two legs, three heads on long necks, giant bat-like wings, and two tails. King Ghidorah's multiple heads were primarily inspired by Yamata no Orochi, an eight-headed dragon from Japanese mythology that had been featured in the 1959 Toho film The Three Treasures. Toho also drew inspiration from the three-headed dragon Zmey Gorynych from the 1956 Soviet film Ilya Muromets, which had been distributed theatrically in Japan by Shintoho in March 1959. Other sources of inspiration included mythological creatures such as the Hydra, unicorn, pegasus, and qilin. King Ghidorah was brought to life on the movie screen by a stunt actor inside an elaborate three-piece suit, with a team of puppeteers to control the suit's many appendages. His design was mostly created by Eiji Tsuburaya based on a minimal description in the script: "It has three heads, two tails, and a voice like a bell."
While King Ghidorah is most commonly seen as a subservient ally of numerous alien races, he does act under his own free will on several occasions. Whenever his alien masters' mind control is severed, he becomes confused due to no longer receiving their commands, and is easily overwhelmed by Godzilla and his allies, eventually trying to retreat. In Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, King Ghidorah is said to be evil, and destroys civilizations on several planets simply for the fun of it. He tries to do the same to Earth, only to be stopped by three of its native monsters. In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah nearly wiped out the dinosaurs during the Cretaceous period, then returned to Earth in the modern day to feed on humanity. In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, King Ghidorah is one of the Guardian Monsters, being the God of the Sky. King Ghidorah was a protector of Japan, making him a benevolent monster for the first, and so far, only time. In the GODZILLA anime trilogy, Ghidorah is a ravenous extradimensional entity which subsists by consuming entire planets and all life on them, and directs the alien Exif civilization that serves him. It seems that each of King Ghidorah's heads can think for themselves separately to some extent, although the middle head appears to be dominant.
King Ghidorah has traditionally been depicted as an evil destructive creature from outer space, although his origin has varied throughout his appearances.
In the Showa series, King Ghidorah is an alien dragon said to have attacked Venus under his own power many thousands of years ago, wiping out the planet's entire civilization. He later attacked Earth, but was repelled by Earth's monsters. At some point, he was taken control of by the Xiliens and used as a pawn in their invasion of Earth. King Ghidorah was destined to be taken control of by different alien races, losing his history on the way.
In Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, King Ghidorah is part of a scheme by time-traveling terrorists known as the Futurians to destroy Japan in the past to prevent it from becoming a global economic superpower. He is the result of the Futurians placing three genetically-engineered creatures from the future called Dorats on Lagos Island in the year 1944. In 1954, the Dorats were exposed to the Castle Bravo hydrogen bomb test conducted at nearby Bikini Atoll, which caused them to merge and mutate into King Ghidorah. According to the novelization of the film, the Dorats were engineered using DNA recovered from the corpse of another King Ghidorah found on the surface of Venus.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah, a more powerful relative of Desghidorah, arrived on the Earth millions of years ago during the Cretaceous, attempting to wipe out all of the planet's life. He returned to Earth in the present in order to feed on humanity, particularly children.
In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, King Ghidorah is reinvented as a heroic monster for the first, and so far only, time. In this film, King Ghidorah is the God of the Sky and one of the three Guardian Monsters, along with Mothra and Baragon. Known as the Yamata no Orochi, an ancient eight-headed dragon from Japanese mythology, King Ghidorah was slain by Japanese warriors thousands of years ago and laid to rest underneath Mount Fuji. The warriors prayed for King Ghidorah's soul, and over the next several centuries he slowly regenerated, empowered by the souls of Japan's honorable dead. However, he was awakened before he could grow back all eight of his heads, instead growing only three.
In the GODZILLA anime trilogy, Ghidorah is an energy-based being that hails from another dimension, the end result of a path of evolution in which life discarded its physical body and became composed of pure energy. Ghidorah's energy-based composition allows him to pass through dimensions, which is how he made contact with the Exif civilization 100,000 years ago. The Exif willingly sacrificed their planet to Ghidorah and accepted him as their deity, then took to wandering the stars over the ensuing millennia in order to offer more planets to him.
In the MonsterVerse, King Ghidorah's exact origins are as of yet unknown, however he has been frozen underneath the Antarctic ice for some time. There are many ancient accounts of the monster across several civilizations and mythologies, including some which recount him doing battle with Godzilla and Mothra. What is clear is that King Ghidorah is a dreaded "living extinction event," and has inspired the many multi-headed apocalyptic beasts in the world's religions.
These are incarnations of King Ghidorah that have their own pages or subpages devoted to them.
- Showa King Ghidorah (Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster through Zone Fighter)
- King Ghidorah 1991 (Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah)
- Mecha-King Ghidorah (Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah and Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II)
- King Ghidorah 1998 (Rebirth of Mothra III)
- King Ghidorah 2001 (Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack)
- King Ghidorah 2018 (GODZILLA: City on the Edge of Battle and GODZILLA: The Planet Eater)
- MonsterVerse King Ghidorah (Kong: Skull Island and Godzilla: King of the Monsters)
- Main article: King Ghidorah/Showa.
Thousands of years ago, King Ghidorah attacked the planet Venus, eradicating the planet's advanced civilization and rendering Venus an uninhabitable wasteland. The few Venusians that survived the monster's attacks fled to Earth, where they interbred with the native humans and gradually began to lose their identity.
In the present day, a meteor shower was visible in the skies above Earth, with one meteor crashing down in the Kurobe Valley in Japan. A scientific team led by Professor Murai traveled to the valley to examine the meteor, which exuded a strange glow and even produced its own magnetic field that fluctuated in strength. After several days of study, Murai and his colleagues observed that the meteor was actually growing in size. One day, the meteor began producing an extremely powerful magnetic field before splitting open and launching a ball of fire into the sky above. The fireball exploded several times before finally taking the form of King Ghidorah, having come to do to to Earth what he did to Venus in the past. King Ghidorah flew over Japan, leveling cities effortlessly with his gravity beams. As the cosmic terror approached the Mount Fuji area, Mothra tried to convince her fellow Earth monsters Godzilla and Rodan to cease their fighting and join forces against King Ghidorah. The monsters refused, forcing Mothra to take on King Ghidorah by herself. King Ghidorah blasted the larva with his gravity beams, arousing the anger of Godzilla and Rodan, who finally entered the battle. While King Ghidorah was more powerful than the three monsters individually, he was no match for their combined might, and was beaten into submission and covered in a silken cocoon. As Godzilla pelted King Ghidorah with boulders and threw him off a cliff, King Ghidorah finally retreated and flew back into the void of outer space.
When astronauts Fuji and Glenn arrived on the newly-discovered Planet X, they encountered an intelligent and technologically advanced alien race called the Xiliens. The Xiliens' leader, the Controller of Planet X, explained that his people lived in constant terror due to the attacks of a horrific space monster known as Monster Zero (怪物０ Kaibutsu Zero). The Controller showed the two a video feed of the creature, revealing it to be none other than King Ghidorah. The Controller explained that he knew Godzilla and Rodan drove off King Ghidorah when the monster attacked Earth, and asked that his people be allowed to "borrow" the two monsters to fight off King Ghidorah on Planet X. When the two astronauts returned to Earth and received the support of the world's leaders, the Xiliens revealed themselves, having already been operating on Earth in secret. The Controller apologized for the secrecy, but thanked Earth's leaders and ordered the Xiliens' UFOs to transport Godzilla and Rodan to Planet X, with Glenn, Fuji and their superior Dr. Sakurai accompanying them to oversee the mission. When the monsters were placed on Planet X, King Ghidorah flew overhead and attacked them. Godzilla and Rodan joined forces again, and managed to force the space monster to retreat. The Controller remarked that this was a triumphant day for Planet X, and provided Glenn and Fuji with a tape he claimed contained the cure for cancer. The Controller sent the astronauts on their way, keeping Godzilla and Rodan on Planet X.
When the astronauts returned to Earth, they found the tape was actually an ultimatum demanding that Earth surrender to Planet X and become a colony. King Ghidorah had actually been under the Xiliens' control the entire time, and now both Godzilla and Rodan had become their pawns as well. When humanity refused to surrender, the Xiliens released the mind-controlled Godzilla, Rodan and King Ghidorah on Earth to destroy its major cities. Thankfully, Fuji and several Earth scientists discovered a device capable of breaking the aliens' control over the monsters. The device was activated, while the JSDF assaulted the Xiliens' hidden base. The Xiliens lost their control over the monsters, while their forces were defeated by the JSDF When Godzilla regained consciousness, he woke up Rodan and the two attacked King Ghidorah once again. During the battle, Rodan grabbed Godzilla and carried him in the air, slamming into King Ghidorah and sending all three monsters plummeting into the sea below. After a few moments, King Ghidorah flew out of the water and retreated back to outer space, while Godzilla and Rodan disappeared beneath the waves.
When the crew of the Moonlight SY-3 destroyed the device the Kilaaks were using to control Earth's monsters, Godzilla and his fellow monsters assembled near the Kilaaks' base at Mount Fuji, preparing to assault it. The Kilaaks proceeded to unleash their trump card, King Ghidorah, to defend their base. King Ghidorah descended and attacked the Earth monsters, managing to hold his own against several opponents. Anguirus bit down on King Ghidorah's neck, causing him to take flight and send Anguirus falling to the Earth. King Ghidorah landed and stomped Anguirus into the dust, then reentered battle against Godzilla and his allies. Anguirus, undeterred, got back up and attacked King Ghidorah again. As King Ghidorah battled Godzilla and his allies, Gorosaurus landed a devastating kangaroo-kick on his back, knocking him to the ground. Godzilla proceeded to stomp on King Ghidorah's necks, causing him to cough up blood. Minilla fired a smoke ring that choked King Ghidorah's remaining head and caused it to fall limp to the ground. Mothra and Kumonga then covered King Ghidorah's carcass with silk and webbing. When Godzilla found the Kilaaks' base and destroyed it, it caused a huge fissure to open in the ground, with King Ghidorah's lifeless body falling into it. With King Ghidorah defeated for good and the alien invasion thwarted, Godzilla and the other monsters returned to Monsterland to live out their days in peace.
As part of their plan to conquer the Earth, the M Space Hunter Nebula Aliens took control of King Ghidorah and allied him with their own cybernetic monster, Gigan. Controlling the two monsters from the Godzilla Tower located in World Children's Land, the Nebulans unleashed Gigan and King Ghidorah in Tokyo. The space monsters razed the city and withstood all of the JSDF's attempts to stop them, leaving humanity helpless. Thankfully, Godzilla and Anguirus became aware of the invaders' scheme, and swam to Tokyo to battle Gigan and King Ghidorah. However, King Ghidorah and his cybernetic ally proved to be more than a match for the Earth monsters. Godzilla was badly wounded by Gigan's hook-tipped appendages and the Godzilla Tower's laser beam, leaving Anguirus at the mercy of both space monsters. Fortunately, a group of humans managed to destroy the Godzilla Tower, severing the Nebulans' control over Gigan and King Ghidorah and leaving them confused. Godzilla and Anguirus regrouped and assaulted their foes once more, seizing the upper hand. Gigan attempted to retreat and was shot out of the sky, allowing Godzilla and Anguirus to double-team King Ghidorah. Godzilla held King Ghidorah still from behind while Anguirus rammed him with his spiky carapace. King Ghidorah soon retreated along with Gigan, leaving Godzilla and Anguirus victorious and the Earth safe once again.
King Ghidorah was later taken control of by an evil race of aliens called the Garogas, and was deployed to Earth to destroy a newly-developed invention called the Blue-Green device, meant to reduce carbon monoxide pollution. The approaching King Ghidorah was soon engaged by the Japanese Air-Self Defense Force, but their efforts proved futile against the space dragon. The Garogas held the scientists who invented the device hostage, intending for King Ghidorah to destroy the building, including the device and scientists inside. Luckily, Hikaru Sakimori and his siblings arrived just in time to stop them. Transforming into Zone Fighter, Angel, and Junior, the trio manage to ward off the Garogas.
Later, after the Garogas enacted their Dark Prism operation, planting a crystal-like prism for the Zone Family to recover and eventually leading them into a trap, King Ghidorah appeared once more. Hikaru transformed into his giant Zone Fighter form to combat the Terror-Beast, and attempted to lure him away from the research institute where the Blue-Green device was being held. However, Zone Fighter was greatly inhibited by the Dark Prism, which slowly absorbed the sun's light and left him unable to recharge energy. In this time of need, Hikaru's grandfather Raita unleashed the artificial cloud Bolt Thunder, which bombarded King Ghidorah with a barrage of lightning. Weakened by the Bolt Thunder, King Ghidorah's control over the Dark Prism was severed, and Zone Fighter was able to replenish energy once more. With his energy fully restored, Zone Fighter managed to lure King Ghidorah back into space.
While luring King Ghidorah to Venus, Zone Fighter realized that the monster had disappeared. He returned to Earth to protect his family from the Garogas, only to find that they had been kidnapped. After eventually rescuing his family members, Zone Fighter was given an urgent call to return to the research institute, where he found that several cars had been suspended in midair, deducing it as the work of King Ghidorah. Transforming into Zone Fighter once more, Hikaru rescued the passengers of the floating vehicles, and confronted King Ghidorah yet again. As the titans battled in the city, Zone Fighter was struck in the face by one of King Ghidorah's gravity beams, leaving him blinded. Unable to retaliate, Zone Fighter was forced to revert to human form as King Ghidorah decimated the institute. Returning home, Hikaru's vision was restored, and he decided to face off against King Ghidorah one last time. Successfully luring King Ghidorah to Venus, Zone Fighter managed to defeat the space demon after a vicious struggle, although King Ghidorah managed to escape with his life, something few of the hero's enemies, not even Gigan, were able to do.
- Main article: King Ghidorah/Heisei.
Planning to destroy Japan in the past and prevent it from becoming a corrupt economic superpower by the 23rd century, a group of time-traveling terrorists known as the Futurians traveled to 1992 Japan and claimed that Godzilla would return to destroy Japan in the near future, rendering the nation uninhabitable in the future. The Futurians assembled a team of Japanese citizens and traveled to Lagos Island in 1944, where it was believed a Godzillasaurus would later be exposed to the Castle Bravo H-bomb test conducted at nearby Bikini Atoll in 1954 and transform into Godzilla. The Futurians teleported the Godzillasaurus to the Bering Sea, where they believed it would die, and in its place secretly left behind three genetically-engineered creatures called Dorats. In 1954, the Dorats were exposed to the H-bomb test and merged together into King Ghidorah, who was taken control of by the Futurians in 1992 and unleashed against Japan.
King Ghidorah first attacked Fukuoka, tearing the metropolis apart with his gravity beams. The Futurians demanded that the Japanese government surrender to them and follow their demands for rebuilding the country. The government, unwilling to comply, sent a nuclear submarine owned by a private corporation to the Bering Sea, believing the Godzillasaurus was still dormant there and could be transformed into a new Godzilla by the sub's torpedos. Instead, the sub was intercepted en route by Godzilla, who was never actually erased from the timeline in the first place. Godzilla fed on the submarine's radiation, curing his Anti-Nuclear Energy Bacteria infection and causing him to grow to 100 meters in height. Godzilla came ashore in Hokkaido, much to the Futurians' irritation. The Futurians sent King Ghidorah to kill Godzilla, and the two titans battled near Hokkaido. King Ghidorah seemed to have the upper hand, until Emmy Kano and her android M11, defectors from the Futurians, assaulted their comrades' ship MOTHER and destroyed the computer controlling King Ghidorah. King Ghidorah was stunned, allowing Godzilla to get back to his feet. King Ghidorah constricted his necks around Godzilla, choking him and causing him to foam at the mouth. Godzilla was able to free himself with a nuclear pulse, knocking King Ghidorah onto the ground. Godzilla then fired his spiral heat ray at King Ghidorah's middle neck, severing it. Emmy used MOTHER's subship KIDS to teleport MOTHER in front of Godzilla, who promptly destroyed it with his atomic breath. The wounded King Ghidorah tried to fly away, but Godzilla blasted out his wings with his atomic breath and caused him to fall into the North Sea. The empowered Godzilla began a new rampage across Japan, leaving the nation helpless. Emmy believed that King Ghidorah could be revived with technology from her time so long as his corpse was preserved by the cold water, and traveled back to 2204 in KIDS.
When Emmy discovered King Ghidorah's comatose body in 2204, she outfitted the beast with cybernetic enhancements, including a mechanical central head, metal wings and a metal chest containing electrical capture cables and a machine hand. Emmy and M11 took control of the new Mecha-King Ghidorah (メカキングギドラ and traveled back to 1992 Tokyo, where Godzilla had reached the heart of the city. Mecha-King Ghidorah attacked Godzilla with its advanced new weapons, subduing him with its capture cables and machine hand. Mecha-King Ghidorah flew out over the sea with Godzilla, only for him to blast out Mecha-King Ghidorah's wings and send them both plummeting into the ocean. Emmy and M11 escaped the mech inside of KIDS and teleported back to 2204, leaving Godzilla defeated, but still very much alive.
Meka Kingu Gidora)
- Main article: King Ghidorah/Rebirth of Mothra III.
Cretaceous King Ghidorah
King Ghidorah's younger form, Cretaceous King Ghidorah (白亜紀キングギドラ, first arrived and attacked the Haku Aki Kingu Gidora)Earth 130 million years ago in the Cretaceous period. Cretaceous King Ghidorah attempted to exterminate the dinosaurs and almost every other life form on the planet and feed on their life forces. Cretaceous King Ghidorah then encased himself within a meteor and left the Earth, using the life-essence of the creatures he had destroyed to live as he traveled through space. However, Rainbow Mothra managed to transform into Light Speed Mothra and travel back to the Cretaceous period and attack Cretaceous King Ghidorah while he was still on Earth. King Ghidorah's younger form was still more than a match for Rainbow Mothra, shredding both of his wings and mortally wounding Leo before being dropped into a volcano and seemingly killed. Unbeknownst to Rainbow Mothra, one of King Ghidorah's tails was severed in their battle, and burrowed underground to hide and regenerate.
Modern Type King Ghidorah
130 million years later, King Ghidorah arose again as Modern Type King Ghidorah (現代型キングギドラ. King Ghidorah came to Japan in a meteor to feed on humans, mainly children, but he soon started to eat adults. King Ghidorah built a dome in the Gendai-Gata Kingu Gidora)Mount Fuji area where he kept his victims and absorbed their life forces. Rainbow Mothra heard of this monster, and he quickly took action to defeat it. Even with all of Rainbow Mothra's power, King Ghidorah quickly defeated him. Rainbow Mothra touched down nearby, but was healed and transformed into Light Speed Mothra by his priestess Moll and traveled back to the Cretaceous period to defeat King Ghidorah's younger form. In the present day, King Ghidorah had vanished and it appeared Rainbow Mothra had been victorious. However, King Ghidorah reappeared in the sky and resumed his reign of terror, having regenerated from the tail Rainbow Mothra had left behind millions of years ago. Rainbow Mothra was reborn as Armor Mothra and engaged King Ghidorah in battle again, this time proving to be the more powerful combatant. Armor Mothra sliced off King Ghidorah's wing with his own razor-sharp wing then completely destroyed him with a powerful laser beam.
In Episodes 6-15, the Xilien Zagres controls the monsters into fighting against each other and sends King Ghidorah to Earth. The humans break the mind-control, but most are too injured to continue fighting. Godzilla and Rodan battle King Ghidorah and all three monsters are knocked off the cliff. King Ghidorah lay at the bottom of the ocean, but Zagres zapped him with her beam and revived him. He battled furiously against Godzilla, who's atomic ray did nothing. Godzilla finally went down, but Torema unleashed a pyshic wave that knocked King Ghidorah back. Godzilla fired his ray again, and this time King Ghidorah could feel it. She eventually weakens from an attack from Zagres earlier and King Ghidorah continues his fight with Godzilla. Godzilla eventually gains the upper hand, biting one of King Ghidorah's necks. King Ghidorah tries to fly away but Godzilla bites on King Ghidorah's leg. King Ghidorah uses all of his strength to free himself, even lifting Godzilla into the air, and eventually breaks free and flies away.
- Main article: King Ghidorah/GMK.
Thousands of years ago, King Ghidorah, an eight-headed dragon known as a Yamata no Orochi, was slain by ancient Japanese warriors and laid to rest in the forests around Mount Fuji, with the warriors praying for his soul so that he would rise again one day to defend Japan. In 2002, the still-regenerating Ghidorah (魏怒羅, who had only grown back three of his eight heads, was discovered dormant underground by a suicidal man. Hirotoshi Isayama, a prophet attempting to revive Japan's ancient Gidora)Guardian Monsters to stop Godzilla, traveled to Ghidorah's grave and channeled the souls of Japan's honorable dead to revive him. King Ghidorah rose and traveled to Yokohama, where his fellow guardian Mothra was battling Godzilla. Ghidorah arrived and bit Godzilla, electrocuting him through his bite. Godzilla swatted Mothra aside with his tail and bit down on Ghidorah's necks before slamming him onto a building. Before Godzilla could finish Ghidorah with his atomic breath, Mothra flew in front of the beam and was blasted away. Godzilla turned his attention to the JSDF, attempting to wipe out their battleships with his atomic breath. Mothra tried to surprise Godzilla from behind, but was vaporized by his atomic breath.
Mothra's energy flowed into the unconscious Ghidorah, reviving him as the Thousand-Year-Old Dragon, King Ghidorah (千年竜王キングギドラ. King Ghidorah took flight and surrounded himself with an energy shield, which deflected Godzilla's atomic breath. King Ghidorah launched his energy shield at Godzilla, blasting him out of the harbor and into the ocean. King Ghidorah flew over the water and kicked Godzilla when he surfaced, only for Godzilla to drag him underwater. As the monsters battled beneath the waves, the Sen-nen Ryū Ō, lit. Thousand-Year Dragon King King Ghidorah)Satsuma attempted to fire a D-03 Missile at a wound on Godzilla's neck, but it struck King Ghidorah's neck instead and rendered him unconscious on the sea floor. Godzilla swallowed the Satsuma whole and surfaced, destroying a suspension bridge and sending Yuri Tachibana and Teruaki Takeda falling into the water. Yuri dropped a sacred stone into the water, which revitalized King Ghidorah and allowed him to fly out of the water. King Ghidorah blasted Godzilla with his golden gravity beams, but Godzilla managed to absorb them into his dorsal fins. Godzilla fired a powerful blast of atomic breath wrapped in a golden spiral, which obliterated King Ghidorah in a single hit. King Ghidorah's spirit, along with the spirits of Mothra and Baragon, flowed into Godzilla and caused him to sink. The Satsuma then fired a D-03 Missile from inside Godzilla that expanded Godzilla's neck wound. When Godzilla surfaced and fired his atomic breath, it fired out of the wound and caused him to fall back underwater. As the Satsuma floated out of Godzilla, Godzilla charged his beam one more time, only for it to cause him to explode. When the Satsuma surfaced, Taizo Tachibana exited the submarine and saluted the sacrifices of the JSDF soldiers and the Guardian Monsters that had died to stop Godzilla.
- Main article: King Ghidorah/Anime.
When Haruo Sakaki asked Metphies if the Exif home planet of Exifcalus was destroyed by monsters like Earth was, he replied that it was. He explained that the Exif hesitated greatly to carelessly speak the name of the being that destroyed their planet, but said that he should tell Haruo its name. He told Haruo to remember the name when he faced Godzilla in battle and was about to be consumed by fear, because there was a far more destructive force than Godzilla lurking in outer space. Compared to it, Godzilla would not even be worth the fear. Metphies leaned in and whispered into Haruo's ear the forbidden name of this being: Ghidorah.
Following the destruction of Mechagodzilla City, Metphies began to convince the survivors of the operation now taking refuge in the Houtua village that the reason Haruo Sakaki was not assimilated by the Nanometal was because of the divine intervention of God. This way, Metphies began to attract a following and formed a religious cult which aimed to summon God to destroy Godzilla Earth. Haruo confronted Metphies, explaining that he was saved from the Nanometalization through the medical treatment he received from Miana. To his shock Metphies revealed that he thought as much, but explained that his lie was neccessary to inspire faith and allow him to summon God and defeat Godzilla. Haruo was appalled at Metphies' manipulation, and with the fervor of the cult on Earth and calls for his execution aboard the Aratrum building, he was forced to go into hiding. In his absence, Metphies' cult continued to grow and hold religious ceremonies in the Houtua village. Metphies telepathically communicated with Endurph aboard the Aratrum through the Garbetrium, coordinating with him to finally summon God. Endurph attracted a similar cult aboard the ship and began holding congregations as well. Miana confronted Metphies in the village as he telepathically communicated with Endurph, having realized that he possessed telepathy and had been hiding it from the Houtua all along. Metphies responded by restraining Miana and telepathically showing her a vision of a three-headed dragon-like creature, traumatizing her. Miana's twin sister Maina awoke horrified in the night and told Haruo that she heard her sister say the name "Ghidorah."
Soon, Metphies began a summoning ritual in the Houtua village with the congregation of his cult. He gave each cultist a bowl of soup from a pot, commanding them to drink it and then to close their eyes. He then revealed the sacred name of God: Ghidorah. Followers both in the village and on the Aratrum began chanting Ghidorah's name, calling forth the "Wings of Death" to destroy Godzilla. Metphies placed a ritual bead on his Garbetrium, and the shadows of Ghidorah's three heads began creeping across the floor. As the heads bit the shadows of the cultists, the cultists themselves began to be dismembered. Adam Bindewald opened his eyes and saw the heads and limbs of his fellow cultists falling to the floor. Before he could react, he witnessed the silhouette of Ghidorah approaching him. As Adam screamed in horror, he too was killed by the shadow. In the Earth's orbit, a singularity appeared next to the Aratrum. The golden serpentine head of Ghidorah emerged from the portal and began circling the Aratrum, causing havoc with its systems and forming a strong gravitational field around it. As the gravity crushed the ship, debris began to crush those unfortunate enough to be inside of it. Aboard the bridge, Unberto Mori and Takeshi J. Hamamoto communicated with Halu-elu Dolu-do in the engine room and told him restart the ship's gravity coil so it could escape, but were informed that the engine room was already destroyed 40 seconds ago, despite Dolu-do having made contact in that time. The Controller then revealed that all vital signs on the bridge had ceased; it was as if they were all already dead. Mori and Hamamoto watched in horror as Ghidorah's head began to approach the bridge of the ship. Shortly after, the Aratrum exploded, killing all aboard. As Martin Lazzari and Josh Emerson noticed that contact with the Aratrum had been lost, the sky began to turn black as storm clouds appeared in the sky. Three black vortexes opened in the sky and began to generate strong lightning strikes. They retreated to a watch tower with Haruo, Maina, and the rest of the Houtua. Haruo realized that Metphies must have been responsible for this, and left to confront him. Godzilla, still dormant after destroying Mechagodzilla City, was alerted by the strange occurrence and awakened. Soon, black portals appeared inside the vortexes and one of Ghidorah's heads emerged from a portal then began slithering down from the sky. Godzilla opened fire at the head with his atomic breath, but the beam seemed to inexplicably curve around Ghidorah. Godzilla fired again, only for the beam to be reflected downward. Martin wondered if Ghidorah had used gravity waves to distort the beam, or maybe curved space-time itself. Josh reported that their computer showed no indication of the beam curving; in fact it didn't detect Ghidorah at all. Only their eyes and ears could see Ghidorah, as if the creature was an illusion. Ghidorah's head then lunged forward toward Godzilla, who swiped at it with his hand only for it to harmlessly phase through Ghidorah's neck. Ghidorah's head then circled behind Godzilla before biting down on his shoulder, completely bypassing his shield. Godzilla roared in pain and tried to grab Ghidorah's neck, but his hand again moved through it as if it wasn't really there. Josh said the computer was detecting the electromagnetic energy inside Godzilla dropping, which Martin said was impossible since he was only bitten and his shield always protected him from attack. Godzilla swiped at Ghidorah's neck with his tail, but it again phased through it. Josh detected further gravitational disturbance as two more heads emerged from the other portals in the sky. Both heads moved toward the ground, with one biting Godzilla's other shoulder and another biting his leg. Josh said that the computer was only detecting an expanding abnormal gravitational field, and otherwise was not picking up anything from the monster.
Haruo confronted Metphies on a hill, where he watched the battle between Ghidorah and Godzilla and had tied Miana to a wooden structure. Haruo demanded to know what Metphies had done, and he replied that he was fulfilling his eternal mission. He had finally summoned King Ghidorah, the Golden Demise, to Earth, and was about to sacrifice both Godzilla and the world to him. Metphies explained that the only purpose of existence was to be an offering to Ghidorah, and that to be destroyed by him was the greatest blessing of all. Metphies turned to look at Haruo, revealing that he had replaced one of his eyes with the Garbetrium bead which was now glowing golden. Metphies stared into Haruo's eyes, triggering a telepathic vision where Haruo was at Metphies' mercy. Metphies subjected Haruo to visions of his past in order to make him submit to Ghidorah and become the chosen one who will lead the rest of mankind to willingly be sacrificed to him. Meanwhile, Godzilla continued unsuccessfully to struggle with Ghidorah, his attempts to grab the creature's necks resulting in his hand phasing through them. Martin and Josh, observing the battle, determined that despite Godzilla's shield being activated, he was still taking damage from Ghidorah's assault. Godzilla began converting the electromagnetic energy in his body into heat, as he had done in his battle with Mechagodzilla City. Godzilla's skin began to crack and glow scarlet, as the area around him became superheated. Still, Ghidorah seemed completely unaffected by the heat. He continued biting down on Godzilla, and gradually the scarlet glow began to disappear from his body. Martin and Josh determined that Ghidorah was absorbing the heat as fast as Godzilla could produce it. As a result, Godzilla's body began to cool as the surrounding heat vanished without producing any steam. Martin finally determined that Ghidorah wasn't from this dimension, and as such its physical laws didn't apply to it. This didn't just mean that Ghidorah could defeat Godzilla, but that he could destroy the entire planet. Ghidorah began to lift Godzilla into the air effortlessly, despite his incredible size. Martin said that since Ghidorah was from another universe, Godzilla was totally powerless against him. From Godzilla's perspective, Ghidorah was essentially an illusion, but for Ghidorah Godzilla was physically present and could be attacked. Martin realized that the only way for an extradimensional creature like Ghidorah to operate in this dimension was if someone was guiding it, and that someone must be Metphies. Martin declared that he had to go warn Haruo, but Maina insisted on coming to save Haruo too, saying that he was already fighting with Ghidorah as well. As Ghidorah lifted Godzilla further into the air, Josh noticed that Godzilla's measurements were becoming impossible to detect as well, as if Ghidorah was eroding reality.
Martin and Maina arrived at the Houtua's temple, and entered the cave housing Mothra's egg. They placed their hands on it, as Maina appealed to Mothra to send their message to Haruo. Heeding her request, Mothra manifested inside Haruo's vision and destroyed the plane that Metphies and Haruo were inside. As Haruo fell through the sky in his vision, Maina and Martin were able to reach him and explain the situation. He realized that the Garbetrium bead in Metphies' eye was acting as Ghidorah's eyes and allowing him to attack Godzilla. Metphies quickly seized back control of the vision and continued to subject Haruo to more hallucinations, but upon experiencing a vision of his parents, Haruo was finally able to break free of Metphies' influence. When he escaped from the vision, Haruo was holding Metphies by the head. Haruo then shattered the Garbetrium bead with his thumb, severing Metphies' connection to Ghidorah. Ghidorah suddenly released Godzilla, who found that he could now physically make contact with Ghidorah. Josh even saw that his computer was now able to detect Ghidorah and that his gravitational field was decaying as the vortexes in the sky began to shrink. As Godzilla fell back to the ground, his dorsal plates began to course with electromagnetic energy as he swung his tail and fired the Plasma Cutter. Ghidorah's heads attempted to bite down on Godzilla again, but Godzilla struck one of Ghidorah's necks with his tail, knocking the head to the ground. Ghidorah's head roared out in pain before evaporating into golden particles. Godzilla then grabbed another head by its jaws and pulled them apart until he tore off its lower jaw. This head too vanished, and the remaining head released Godzilla as it began retreating back into the sky. Godzilla charged and fired his atomic breath at Ghidorah's last head, which shot directly into his mouth before passing through it and striking the black portal in the sky until it exploded. Godzilla charged his atomic breath again and destroyed the second portal, before repeating the process on the third portal. Ghidorah was finally banished from this dimension, and for at least the time being the planet was safe from his terror. As Metphies lay dying, he told Haruo that for as long as he lived, Ghidorah would be watching him.
Some time later, when Martin showed Haruo that he had found a way to activate the Nanometal in the last remaining Vulture, he explained that with this technology they would be able to restore human civilization. Haruo then experienced a brief hallucination where he heard Metphies voice tell him that mankind would inevitably advance back to the point that brought about the wrath of Godzilla, and the cycle of destruction would begin anew. Time was still on Ghidorah and the Exif's side, and the Earth was still vulnerable. Haruo decided to take measures into his own hands and do what he felt was necessary to stop this. He retrieved Yuko Tani's comatose body from the Houtua village, but was confronted by Miana. He asked Miana if she thought Godzilla was scary, and if she hated him. She explained that the Houtua had no concept of hate, and that she didn't understand what Haruo meant. Haruo simply replied that if he stayed, he worried the Houtua might end up understanding him, which is why he had to go. He got into the remaining Vulture with Yuko and flew toward Godzilla, screaming at him to take away the last remnant of the hatred of the past, of all the lives Godzilla had destroyed. Godzilla charged his atomic breath and fired it at the Vulture, which crashed to the ground and exploded. In his dying act, Haruo erased all that remained of humanity's past, and tried to ensure that the cycle of destruction could be ended so Ghidorah would not return to destroy the Earth.
- Main article: King Ghidorah/Legendary.
After their adventure on Skull Island, Monarch members Houston Brooks and Lin San showed James Conrad and Mason Weaver two cave paintings of King Ghidorah, along with paintings depicting Godzilla, Mothra and Rodan, as proof that the inhabitants of Skull Island were not the only monsters in the world. In the second painting, he was shown fighting Godzilla.
After obtaining the ORCA, Alan Jonah and his men traveled to Monarch's Outpost 32 in Antarctica where they gunned down all of the Monarch personnel. They entered the base and found King Ghidorah frozen within the ice. Jonah's men drilled into the ice and planted explosive charges within it, while Emma Russell calibrated the ORCA to Ghidorah. Monarch soon arrived and stormed the outpost, engaging in a firefight with Jonah's men. Emma grabbed the detonator for the charges and pressed it, freeing Ghidorah from the ice. After retreating to their stolen Monarch Osprey, Jonah ordered Emma to awaken Ghidorah with the ORCA. She obliged, and the three-headed Titan rose from the ice. Monarch's G-Team opened fire on Ghidorah's heads as they eyed them curiously before retaliating with devastating gravity beams that vaporized them. Ghidorah completely freed himself from the ice and made his way to Monarch's Ospreys, though Emma used the ORCA to distract him before he attacked them. Godzilla soon eruped from the ice to confront Ghidorah, and the two Titans collided. Ghidorah was more than a match for Godzilla physically, forcing Godzilla to call upon his atomic breath. Ghidorah's heads weaved out of the way of the blast and countered with their gravity beams, which knocked Godzilla off of the ice shelf. Ghidorah resumed terrorizing the humans, destroying one Osprey and killing Dr. Vivienne Graham as she and Mark Russell tried to flee to safety. Before he could kill the others, the USS Argo flew overhead and bombarded Ghidorah with missiles. As Godzilla crawled back onto the ice, Ghidorah took flight and escaped.
Monarch tracked Ghidorah aboard the Osprey, only for him to disappear in a tropical storm over Brazil. Their new priority became dealing with Rodan, a winged Titan which Emma had unleashed from Outpost 56 in Isla de Mara, Mexico. As the Argo engaged in an aerial chase with Rodan, Ghidorah was detected moving to the location within the tropical storm. Monarch decided to lure Rodan to Ghidorah so they would fight each other. As the Argo entered the eye of the storm, it dove out of the way as Ghidorah and Rodan collided and began tearing at each other. Ghidorah restrained Rodan's wings with his left and right heads, and fired a gravity beam from his central head that blasted Rodan into the water below. Ghidorah turned his attention to the Argo and pursued it, only to be dragged underwater by Godzilla. Godzilla pulled Ghidorah under the surface and bit down on his left neck, tearing it off. Just as Godzilla seemed about to win, the military's Oxygen Destroyer struck the water and produced a colossal green explosion. While Godzilla was severely injured by the blast, Ghidorah was unharmed and flew out of the water, landing atop the Isla de Mara volcano. Ghidorah regenerated his missing head in a matter of moments and spread his wings, shrieking loudly into the sky. His call awakened other Titans around the world, including Scylla, Methuselah, Behemoth, and a MUTO, all of whom began to rampage. Rodan landed at the foot of the volcano and submitted to Ghidorah, doing his bidding along with the other newly-awakened Titans. Ghidorah made his way to the East Coast of the United States, bringing with him a massive hurricane that settled over Washington, D.C. When Monarch learned that Godzilla was still alive, it sent a nuclear submarine to try and revive him while the Argo battled Ghidorah and Rodan in D.C. along with the military.
Horrified at what her mother had helped to unleash, Emma's daughter Madison stole the ORCA and brought it to Fenway Park, where she broadcast a signal that calmed the other Titans and lured Ghidorah to Boston. Upon landing, Ghidorah destroyed the loudspeakers broadcasting the sound and fired his gravity beams into the pressbox. Madison managed to escape onto the field, but Ghidorah found her and prepared to fire his gravity beams. However, the now-revitalized Godzilla arrived in the city surrounded by a military escort and blasted Ghidorah with his atomic breath. Ghidorah charged at Godzilla and the Titans collided with each other, producing a shockwave that shook the Argo. Monarch deployed two Ospreys to try and save Madison and recover the ORCA as Godzilla and Ghidorah continued to fight. Ghidorah restrained Godzilla with his heads and pinned him to the ground, but Godzilla used his atomic breath to force him off. Mothra flew overhead and used her silk to pin Ghidorah's heads against a building. As Ghidorah tried to free his heads, Godzilla charged and tackled him through the building. As Ghidorah lay on the ground and witnessed Godzilla approaching, he called to Rodan to intercept Mothra. With Rodan and Mothra fighting in the air, Ghidorah and Godzilla continued their battle on the ground. Ghidorah bit down on a nearby power substation and absorbed the electricity, which he projected through the tips of his wings, blinding and stunning Godzilla. Ghidorah pressed his advantage and leaped onto Godzilla, grabbing him in his claws and carrying him into the sky. Ghidorah used his middle neck to strangle Godzilla until he went limp, then dropped Godzilla from above the clouds. Godzilla struck the ground and was left immobilized as Ghidorah landed near him, ready to finish him off. The injured Mothra weakly crawled onto Godzilla and shielded him with her wings, then flew at Ghidorah as he fired his gravity beams, vaporizing her. After Mothra's energy flowed into Godzilla, Ghidorah bit down on his foe and began siphoning his energy through his mouths. Emma, having had a change of heart, repaired the ORCA with Mark and used it to distract Ghidorah and force him to release Godzilla. In order to allow the Osprey to escape, Emma took the ORCA and lured Ghidorah away in a jeep. Ghidorah pursued Emma and destroyed the vehicle with his gravity beams, launching Emma from the car. Mortally wounded on the ground, Emma looked up at Ghidorah and said "Long live the King" as her final words. Ghidorah turned to see Godzilla, covered in glowing orange cracks and emitting intense heat, approaching him. Godzilla emitted a nuclear pulse shaped like Mothra's wings and making the sound of her roar, with Ghidorah trying to shield his heads with his wings. The blast incinerated the flesh on Ghidorah's wings, and he fired his gravity beams at Godzilla, Godzilla was unaffected and unleashed another pulse, disintegrating Ghidorah's left and right heads. Godzilla stomped on Ghidorah's chest as the accumulated nuclear energy inside him exploded, leveling a huge portion of the city. When the smoke cleared, Ghidorah's last remaining head emerged from the rubble, hanging from Godzilla's mouth. Godzilla fired his atomic breath, which incinerated the head and reduced Ghidorah to nothing but ash.
King Ghidorah has had a number of changes made to himself over the years, but most of his traditional battle characteristics have remained the same. His different forms in the different movies have their own abilities.
King Ghidorah is able to fly up to speeds of Mach 3 in the Earth's atmosphere. He exceeds this speed while flying through space. In Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster and Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah can encase himself within a meteorite while traveling from planet to planet. In Godzilla vs. Gigan he encases himself in a large diamond-like structure while traveling through space. In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah is able to fly even with the loss of one of his wings using a zero gravity field.
King Ghidorah's most famous ability is the golden lightning bolt-like gravity beams he spits from his three mouths. These beams are roughly equal in power to Godzilla's atomic breath, and are capable of causing large-scale explosions when fired at buildings. In Rebirth of Mothra III, the mature King Ghidorah could also combine all three gravity beams into a single devastating attack.
King Ghidorah can produce hurricane-force winds by flapping his wings, which are capable of blowing away buildings and knocking other kaiju off their feet.
In Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, King Ghidorah constricted his necks around Godzilla in an attempt to strangle him, causing him to foam at the mouth. King Ghidorah has also been seen using this ability in various games and comics.
King Ghidorah is usually portrayed as being extremely durable and resistant to damage, often to an extent close to Godzilla. He withstands conventional weaponry with no noticeable effect, and can even shrug off point-blank blasts from Godzilla's atomic breath. In Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, he survives having his middle head decapitated and his wings shredded, and remains alive but comatose for over 200 years laying on the sea floor. In Rebirth of Mothra III his mature form cannot be damaged at all by Mothra Leo's attacks until the latter transforms into Armor Mothra. In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, King Ghidorah's durability is reduced, but he still survives being knocked out by Godzilla multiple times and withstands multiple blasts from his atomic breath.
King Ghidorah tends to use his durability to his advantage, as he often prefers to escape from a battle that he can't win before he suffers more injuries than necessary.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, Cretaceous King Ghidorah can spit fireballs from his mouths in place of his usual gravity beams.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah is shown to have regenerated his entire body from a severed tail that was cut off by Rainbow Mothra in the past. It is suggested in an informational book about the film that King Ghidorah could still regenerate from the wing that is cut off by Armor Mothra in their final battle.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah's scales can manipulate the light from projectiles to form a protective barrier.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah can shoot six bolts of electricity from each of his wings.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah is able to create a dome that allows objects to pass through, yet has a corrosive effect when they try to leave. The dome's exterior is laced with tentacles that pull outside victims inside. Living creatures inside the dome slowly have their life-force drained and transferred to King Ghidorah.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah can teleport smaller beings inside his dome.
In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah can install a weak mind control on other beings susceptible to it.
In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, Ghidorah can release a strong electric shock through his bite. After absorbing Mothra's power and becoming King Ghidorah, this ability is replaced by his traditional gravity beams.
In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, after absorbing Mothra's energy, King Ghidorah can form a golden round energy shield that deflects Godzilla's atomic breath. King Ghidorah can release this energy shield and send it colliding with the ground, which will cause a massive explosion.
In Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, while encased in the meteorite, King Ghidorah had the ability to generate what appeared to be magnetic fields that varied in strength from time to time. While it was never stated directly what purpose they served, it was stated that they were somehow connected to its powers. It seems possible that King Ghidorah used them as a form of levitation.
In Zone Fighter, King Ghidorah seems to retain his control over gravity, managing to suspend several cars midair above a research institute.
In the Game Boy Advance video game Godzilla: Domination!, the space monster King Ghidorah has two new, never-before-seen fighting abilities: first, the ability to emit devastating magnetic beams from his mouth, and second, the ability to produce a powerful magnetic pull around him which will draw nearby monsters closer and injure them. King Ghidorah is able to maintain the presence of his magnetic pull for roughly ten seconds before halting the attack and needing to recharge in order to reuse the attack.
- Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster (1964)
- Invasion of Astro-Monster (1965)
- Destroy All Monsters (1968)
- Godzilla vs. Gigan (1972)
- Zone Fighter (TV 1973)
- Terror of Mechagodzilla (1975) [stock footage]
- Bye-Bye Jupiter (1984) [stock footage]
- Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah (1991)
- Adventure! Godzilland 2 (TV 1993) [animated segments]
- Get Going! Godzilland (OVA 1994, 1996)
- Godzilla Island (TV 1997-1998) [17 episodes][note 4]
- Rebirth of Mothra III (1998)
- Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (2001)
- Godzilla: Final Wars (2004) [toy]
- Kong: Skull Island (2017) [cave paintings]
- GODZILLA: City on the Edge of Battle [mentioned]
- GODZILLA: The Planet Eater (2018)
- Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019)
- Godzilla vs. 3 Giant Monsters (1984) - Microsoft MSX
- Gojira-kun (1985) - Microsoft MSX
- Godzilla: Monster of Monsters! (1988) - Nintendo Entertainment System / Famicom
- Godzilla (1990) - Nintendo Game Boy
- Godzilla 2: War of the Monsters (1992) - Nintendo Entertainment System
- Battle Soccer: Champion of the Field (1992) - Nintendo Super Famicom
- Godzilla (1993) - Arcade
- Battle Baseball (1993) - Nintendo Famicom
- Godzilla, King of the Monsters (1993) - Nintendo Game Boy
- Super Godzilla (1993) - Super Nintendo Entertainment System / Super Famicom
- Godzilla: Battle Legends (1993) - NEC/Hudson Soft TurboDuo / PC Engine Duo
- Godzilla: Great Monster Battle (1994) - Nintendo Super Famicom
- Godzilla: Heart-Pounding Monster Island!! (1995) - Sega Pico
- Godzilla: Giant Monster March (1995) - Sega Game Gear
- Godzilla: Archipelago Shock (1995) - Sega Saturn
- Godzilla Movie Studio Tour (1998) - PC and Mac
- Godzilla: Trading Battle (1998) - Sony PlayStation
- Godzilla Generations (1998) - Sega Dreamcast
- Collect Godzilla: Giant Monster Assembly (1998) - Sega Dreamcast VMU
- Godzilla Generations: Maximum Impact (1999) - Sega Dreamcast
- Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee (2002) - Nintendo GameCube and Microsoft Xbox
- Godzilla: Domination! (2002) - Nintendo Game Boy Advance
- Godzilla: Save the Earth (2004) - Sony PlayStation 2 and Microsoft Xbox
- CR Godzilla 3S-T Battle (2006) - Pachinko
- Godzilla: Unleashed (2007) - Nintendo Wii and Sony PlayStation 2
- Godzilla Unleashed: Double Smash (2007) - Nintendo DS
- Godzilla: Pachislot Wars (2007) - Pachislot
- Godzilla: Monster Mayhem (2009) - iOS [3D]
- Godzilla: Monster Mayhem (2009) - iOS [2D]
- CR Godzilla: Descent of the Destruction God (2010) - Pachinko
- Godzilla on Monster Island (2011) - AVP Slot Machine
- Godzilla 60th (2014) - Browser
- Godzilla (2014) - Sony PlayStation 3 and 4
- Godzilla: Kaiju Collection (2015) - Android and iOS
- Ace Combat Infinity (2015) - Sony PlayStation 3 [Tokyo Martial Law online mission]
- Pocoron Dungeons (2016) - Android and iOS
- City Shrouded in Shadow (2017) - Sony PlayStation 4
- CR True King of the Monsters Godzilla (2018) - Pachinko
- Godzilla Defense Force (2019) - Android and iOS
Height: 120 meters
Weight: 80,000 tons
"If Gigan is the hammer of the Vortaak invasion forces, then King Ghidorah is the anvil. King Ghidorah is the most physically powerful monster in the universe, and blends immense size, incredible strength, and near invulnerability into a unified engine of monstrous destruction. The Vortaak often hesitate to deploy King Ghidorah at all, lest he demolish their enemies and leave nothing to subjugate. King Ghidorah is at home in the vacuum of space, and travels between planets under his own power. King Ghidorah's wings allow him to fly in Earth's atmosphere, though his great mass hinders his aerial mobility. He naturally generates intense electrical energy that he unleashes as a powerful Triple Gravity Beam from his three heads. Despite all this, King Ghidorah's greatest ability is his asset to withstand damage-all known forms of attack splinter against his thick golden scales."
King Ghidorah appears as a boss on multiple levels, and an ending boss on the final level of some paths. King Ghidorah is one of the most powerful kaiju in the game. He attacks using his gravity beams, flying kick and melee attacks. He will approach Godzilla quickly by flying through the air and firing his gravity beams. He appears as a playable character in the PS4 version.
- One tap: Pincer Bite
- Two taps: Three Headed Bite
- One tap (Mid Air): Bite Kick
- Tap: Three Headed Attack
- Tap (Mid Air): Rotation Attack
- Tap: Jump
- Hold: Fly
- Tap (Mid Air): Land
- Tap: Gravity Beam
- Down + Tap: Wind Gust
- Roar + Tap: Triple Discharge
- Tap: Windstorm
- Main article: Godzilla (2014 video game)/Kaiju Guide#King Ghidorah.
King Ghidorah, bearing his Heisei design, is featured in the upcoming survival RPG City Shrouded in Shadow developed by Granzella and Bandai Namco for the PlayStation 4. King Ghidorah will appear on the game's second stage and battle Godzilla.
King Ghidorah in Godzilla vs. 3 Giant Monsters
King Ghidorah in Godzilla: Monster of Monsters!
King Ghidorah in Godzilla 2: War of the Monsters
King Ghidorah in the Godzilla (arcade)
King Ghidorah in Godzilla: Domination!
King Ghidorah's icon in Godzilla: Domination!
King Ghidorah's character box in Godzilla: Domination!
King Ghidorah's battle sprite in Godzilla: Domination!
King Ghidorah in Godzilla: Save the Earth
King Ghidorah's slot machine icon in CR Godzilla 3S-T Battle
King Ghidorah's slot in Godzilla on Monster Island
King Ghidorah in Godzilla on Monster Island
King Ghidorah in Godzilla (PlayStation 3 / PlayStation 4)
King Ghidorah 1991 in Godzilla: Kaiju Collection
King Ghidorah in City Shrouded in Shadow
- Godzilla Saves America: A Monster Showdown in 3-D! (1996)
- Godzilla 2000 (1997)
- Godzilla vs. the Space Monster (1998)
- Do Your Best Chibi Godzilla (2018)
- Close Friends Chibi Godzilla (2019)
- Godzilla: Kingdom of Monsters #7-11 (2011-2012)
- Godzilla: Gangsters and Goliaths #1, 3 (2011)
- Godzilla: Legends #1, 3 (2011-2012)
- Godzilla: The Half-Century War #5 (2012)
- Godzilla: Cataclysm #1-4 (2014)
- Godzilla in Hell #2-4 (2015)
- Godzilla: Oblivion #1-3 (2016)
- Godzilla: Rulers of Earth #24 (2015)
In this manga produced by Kodansha Comics, King Ghidorah is first seen in the final panel of Volume 1 approaching Earth with Neo Gigan. He was either resurrected or acquired by Doctor Oniyama and utilized as one of the many kaiju in his collection, being named as King Ghidorah III, indicating that both the Showa and Heisei King Ghidorahs are present in the manga's continuity. King Ghidorah III was the first opponent to fight Godzilla in Volume 2, and severely injured Godzilla using his abilities. Ultimately, King Ghidorah III was killed by Godzilla after the latter unleashed a powerful 'nuclear typhoon', a more powerful version of his nuclear pulse, which blasted off both of King Ghidorah III's auxiliary necks. King Ghidorah III was also one of the components for Oniyama's finest creation, King Godzilla - two of his heads and necks, as well as his legs were used in King Godzilla's body.
King Ghidorah appeared in the The Godzilla Comic Raids Again manga, being used by the Xiliens to take over Earth. Before reaching Earth, King Ghidorah encounters Biollante, who later becomes a King Ghidorah clone.
King Ghidorah was featured in IDW's Godzilla: Kingdom of Monsters, where he is portrayed as an ancient monster. In issue #8, he was revived after a young Asian monk performed a suicide ritual in order to revive the monster. Upon awakening, King Ghidorah flew to combat Godzilla in Washington, D.C. In the ensuing battle, King Ghidorah was beaten when knocked down by Godzilla. In a later issue, he briefly participated in a battle between Godzilla and Mechagodzilla. In the following three-way battle, Steven Woods fired Mechagodzilla's special weapon at both King Ghidorah and Godzilla, knocking out both monsters in the process. King Ghidorah did not appear again in the series and is presumed to be dead.
King Ghidorah later appeared in three issues of the mini-series Godzilla: Gangsters and Goliaths. Here, it is shown that King Ghidorah is a resident of Monster Island along with Godzilla, Mothra, Anguirus, and Battra.
King Ghidorah appears in Godzilla: The Half-Century War, where he and Gigan were lured to Earth via a transmitter made by rogue Anti-Megalosaurus Force scientist Dr. Deverich. The device had already summoned SpaceGodzilla to Earth by accident, and soon enough, King Ghidorah and Gigan picked up the signal and headed to Earth. Upon making landfall in 2001, the duo proceeded to destroy half the world in a year. By 2002, the Anti-Megalosaurus Force had developed a weapon called the Dimension Tide, a device that could open miniature black holes. The AMF planned to use it on the alien duo and Godzilla himself. The two aliens were lured to Antarctica, soon were involved in a four-way battle between themselves, Kiryu, and Godzilla. At the fight's climax, the Dimension Tide fired and opened a miniature black hole. King Ghidorah and Gigan were soon sucked into the hole, with a heavily-damaged Kiryu following in suit shortly afterwards.
King Ghidorah returns as Mecha-King Ghidorah in issue #15 of Godzilla: Rulers of Earth. In issue #16, the Cryog leader Rhizon recalls discovering the badly wounded body of King Ghidorah following his earlier battle with Godzilla and Mechagodzilla. Rhizon ordered Gigan to slice off Ghidorah's middle head so that he could replace it with a mechanical head that gave him control over the entire monster.
In issue #24, it was revealed by Rhizon in a flashback that the Cryogs' homeworld was destroyed by King Ghidorah, and that the race's emperor, Karkaro, fled the planet when King Ghidorah arrived, prompting Rhizon to seize control of the planet.
King Ghidorah appears in Godzilla: Cataclysm Issue 1 locked in battle with Godzilla. King Ghidorah bites Godzilla and shocks him through his bite, but Godzilla lifts Ghidorah by his head and slams him to the ground. Godzilla then blasts Ghidorah at point-blank range with his atomic breath and defeats him. It is unknown if King Ghidorah survived the encounter or not. Arata's grandfather later recalls that some members of his village pray to King Ghidorah as a deity that brings rain.
King Ghidorah in Godzilla Cataclysm #2
King Ghidorah appears in the second issue of the series Godzilla in Hell. He appears after Godzilla defeats the Demon Varan and sends him into a whirlpool with his gravity beams. King Ghidorah returns in the fourth issue, where he and Destoroyah are seen, defeated by Godzilla, in the ruins of a city. Suddenly, both kaiju heal and get back up, then relentlessly attack Godzilla together in a recreation of Tokyo in Hell, surrounded by a wall of flesh. Any time any of the three monsters were killed or mortally wounded, they instantly recovered and continued their assault. Godzilla eventually tricked King Ghidorah and Destoroyah into aiding him in escape by ducking when they both fired their beams and combining his beam with them, creating a blast powerful enough to destroy the wall. As Godzilla marched onward, King Ghidorah, Destoroyah, and everything else on the battlefield besides Godzilla disappeared into nothingness.
In Godzilla: Oblivion, King Ghidorah attacked and chased the humans visiting the alternate dimension in which he lived. Due to power problems, he was able to follow them through the inter-dimensional portal and began rampaging in their dimension. After emerging through the portal, King Ghidorah attacked the eastern United States for two weeks, completely destroying the cities of New York, Boston, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. and resisting all attempts by the U.S. military, NATO, and the United Nations to stop him.
Godzilla was eventually brought through to the original dimension to fight King Ghidorah. The monsters battled in Washington D.C., after which King Ghidorah grabbed Godzilla and carried him over the ocean. The military detonated a nuclear bomb in the vicinity of both monsters, which appeared to kill King Ghidorah but left Godzilla unharmed.
King Ghidorah's carcass laid still at the bottom of the ocean, missing its middle head and with shredded wings and a gaping wound in its chest. A group of humans reached the monster's location and raised him up to the surface using a giant balloon. They then brought King Ghidorah's corpse to a facility and mechanically modified it as Mecha-King Ghidorah in order to fight Godzilla and draw him back into his own dimension.
- Main article: King Ghidorah/Gallery.
- King Ghidorah appears four times in Courage the Cowardly Dog, notably two episodes when LeQuack turns on a TV with King Ghidorah on it, and shoots fire from the TV. During the apartment scene in the episode Courage in the Big Stinkin' City, King Ghidorah is behind the second door Courage opens, and roars loudly when disturbed. In this series, King Ghidorah is represented through stock footage from Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster.
- In the film Independence Day, a young boy is seen playing with a King Ghidorah toy.
- In Growing Up Creepie, King Ghidorah was seen in a drive through movie screen, the clip was also from Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster.
- In one episode of the TV series T.U.F.F Puppy, Dudley Puppy, the show's protagonist, turned into a giant, 3-headed monster that could breathe fire.
- An episode of Histeria covering Ancient Rome described the strength of Roman architecture, but saying it couldn't stand up to Ghidorah. The segment ended with the host being crushed by Ghidorah's foot, similar to "Bambi Meets Godzilla."
- In the Cartoon Network television show M.A.D., there's a skit involving the Jonas brothers where a fan sends them a letter asking how they stay so close. They reply by saying they are a giant three headed monster and go on attacking a city.
- In the anime series Shinzo, a similar monster named "Grandorah" was the antagonist in a few episodes.
- King Ghidorah appeared briefly in a Crest commercial.
- In an episode of the Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy titled "Giant Billy and Mandy All Out Attack", there was a parody of King Ghidorah called "Kitty Rah" and barfed hair balls as opposed to King Ghidorah's gravity beams.
- The Pokémon Hydreigon resembles King Ghidorah strongly.
- In August of 2014, the 1998 film was mocked by RiffTrax Live, which was created by and shares many of the former members of Mystery Science Theater 3000. During the riffing, they made witty references to King Ghidorah and Mothra.
- In the film Pee Wee's Big Adventure, during a chase scene through a movie studio, both Godzilla and King Ghidorah can be seen on a set during the filming of a movie.
- In the Cartoon Network television show Teen Titans Go!, The Twin Destroyers of Azarath were transformed into a giant 2-headed monster by Starfire's affection.
- In Tsuburaya Productions' original Ultraman series, King Ghidorah's roars were recycled as the ringtone for the Science Patrol's telephone.
The most common version of King Ghidorah's roar is screeching with some clicking sounds added and modified to sound deeper. In the Heisei era, his roar is borrowed and modified from Rodan in order to sound more dragon-like and somewhat metallic. This was done by multi-tuning Rodan's roar in both high and low pitches. This roar was used again for the mature King Ghidorah in Rebirth of Mothra III, but deepened and mixed with growling noises. Cretaceous King Ghidorah's roars were modified from Desghidorah's elephant-like roar with an increased pitch, and were later used for Orga in the Japanese version of Godzilla 2000: Millennium. In Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack , King Ghidorah's new roar was created to sound more similar to his Showa roar.
In Other Languages
- King Ghidorah is widely considered to be Godzilla's arch-enemy, due to both his popularity and film count of nine.
- King Ghidorah was the very first alien monster to fight Godzilla.
- The Showa King Ghidorah's full-body costume originally had a blue body and iridescent, rainbow-patterned wings. However, some of the crew mistakenly thought it was supposed to be golden, and special-effects director Eiji Tsuburaya liked the idea so much he gave the word, having the crew change the color right before filming. This costume required 25 people to operate its three heads and two tails.
- King Ghidorah consistently ranks as one of viewers' favorite monsters in the Godzilla films. This fame, coupled with the unimpressive box office run of Godzilla vs. Biollante, inspired Kazuki Omori to revive King Ghidorah for the 1991 film.
- King Ghidorah is one of few monsters to appear in all three series of Japanese Godzilla films, the others being Mothra, Rodan, Mechagodzilla, Godzilla's son, and Godzilla himself. King Ghidorah is also featured prominently in both the GODZILLA anime trilogy and Legendary Pictures' MonsterVerse.
- King Ghidorah has traditionally been one of the tallest kaiju featured in a Godzilla film. In the Showa series, King Ghidorah's 100 meter height made him twice Godzilla's height and the tallest monster in the series. For the Heisei series, King Ghidorah's height was increased to 150 meters, making him the tallest monster featured in a Godzilla film until his height was exceeded by Godzilla Earth from the GODZILLA anime trilogy. The MonsterVerse King Ghidorah is set to become the tallest incarnation of King Ghidorah, at approximately 158.8 meters in height.
- Ted Elliot and Terry Rossio, writers of the original 1994 screenplay of TriStar's Godzilla film, originally planned to feature King Ghidorah as Godzilla's enemy, only to learn that TriStar would have to license the monster separately. Instead, they created an original alien monster called the Gryphon for the screenplay.
- In Rebirth of Mothra III, King Ghidorah became the only monster to debut in the Godzilla series and later appear in a non-Godzilla film.
- King Ghidorah is traditionally depicted as a space monster in both film and non-film media, however his origin has been changed throughout his appearances.
- In Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, King Ghidorah's origin was changed, making him the mutation of three genetically-engineered creatures from the future called Dorats. This was due to the fact that the film's director, Kazuki Omori, reportedly did not want King Ghidorah to be a space monster again. However, the film's novelization explains that the Dorats were genetically engineered from DNA recovered from the corpse of another King Ghidorah found on Venus. Toho planned to produce a direct sequel to the film where Godzilla was to battle another King Ghidorah from outer space called The Return of King Ghidorah, but opted to produce Godzilla vs. Mothra instead.
- King Ghidorah's uncharacteristic heroic portrayal as well as his status as a terrestrial monster in Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack is due to the fact that Shusuke Kaneko originally intended the role for Varan, but Toho pressured him to include King Ghidorah and Mothra in the film to increase the marquee value. As a result, King Ghidorah is portrayed as a hero for the first time and is smaller and weaker than Godzilla. King Ghidorah also possesses Varan's facial fins on his three heads in this film. King Ghidorah was included in early drafts for Godzilla: Final Wars, but was replaced by Monster X and Keizer Ghidorah.
- Stock footage of King Ghidorah from Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah was to be included as part of a training simulation in Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II, but the scene was cut.
- According to an interview with Koichi Kawakita conducted in December 1995, a film featuring King Ghidorah was planned for 1999. However, King Ghidorah was worked into the 1998 film Rebirth of Mothra III instead.
- The heights for the Heisei King Ghidorah and Mecha-King Ghidorah are inconsistently listed as either 140 or 150 meters. The majority of sources, mostly those published after 1993, state that King Ghidorah is 140 meters tall, though books contemporary with Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah such as the 1991 Kodansha Hit Books: Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah Monster Great Complete Works (p. 10) and the early-1992 Definitive Edition Godzilla Giant Monster Super Encyclopedia (p. 22), plus the 1995 Godzilla Giant Monster Diagram Encyclopedia (p. 94) and 1998 The Official Godzilla Compendium (p. 132) say King Ghidorah is 150 meters tall.
- Concept size charts included in the 2001 book GMK Super Complete Works list King Ghidorah's height at 49 meters from the ground to the top of the middle head, though most sources, including the very book this size chart originates from, seemingly round it up to 50 meters.
- The wingspans for the Heisei King Ghidorah and Mecha-King Ghidorah are inconsistently listed as being either 140, 150 or 175 meters. The 2014 book Godzilla Completely Deciphered (p. 75) and the PlayStation 3 and 4 Godzilla video game's Kaiju Guide state that the Heisei King Ghidorah's wingspan is 150 meters, while the 1998 The Official Godzilla Compendium says it is instead 175 meters (p. 132). The 1993 Encyclopedia of Godzilla (Mechagodzilla Edition) states that King Ghidorah's wingspan is 140 meters (p. 102).
- Episodes 6-7, 9-15, 57, 68, 72, 127, 145-148.
This is a list of references for King Ghidorah. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: 
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