The Return of Godzilla (manga)

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The Return of Godzilla
The Return of Godzilla (manga)
Author(s) Kazuhisa Iwata
Publisher Shogakukan,
Dark Horse
Publish date May, 1988 (Dark Horse),
1998 (Dark Horse Re-Release)
Genre Manga

The Return of Godzilla (ゴジラ,   Gojira, lit. Godzilla) is a manga adaptation of The Return of Godzilla written by Kazuhisa Iwata and released by Shogakukan.

This manga was re-released by Dark Horse Comics twice. The first, 1988 through 1989 release, simply called Godzilla, had the manga split into 6 issues. The second, 1998 through 1999 release, titled Terror of Godzilla, also had the manga split into 6 issues, but printed in color rather than in black and white.


After considerable volcanic activity, Godzilla is stirred from his millions of years of sleep on the ocean floor, and heads into a world that has changed drastically since he ruled it. While surfacing, Godzilla collides with a boat at sea, the Fifth Yahata Maru. It is unclear if he actually attacks it, but he does roar and fire his Atomic Ray before Shockirus parasites that had been clinging to his body kill and drain most of the men on board, except for Hiroshi Okumura. While sailing, reporter Goro Maki approaches the ship and hopes to get a good story from it, but he is attacked by a Shockirus. It nearly kills him, but hie is saved by Okumura, who quickly passes out due to fatigue. Maki takes Okumura to the hospital, where he asks for him to tell his story to Makoto Hayashida, who fears that his story confirms the return of Godzilla.


The manga follows the plot of The Return of Godzilla closely, although artistic liberties are taken.

  • Shockirus is depicted as a huge, six foot-long cockroach-like insect rather than a one foot-long isopod-esque creature

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one month ago
Score 0
Reply to my comment if this was your first Godzilla comic/manga.

Toa Hydros

33 months ago
Score 1

My Thoughts: The Return of Godzilla (Manga)

Much like the film on which it's based, the story is simple, but well-executed. Godzilla's return is presented with an almost apocalyptic vibe, reestablishing him as a destructive force of nature as opposed to a campy superhero. The human characters are also likable in their own ways. I like that there isn't a contrived human "villain" in this version, just a bad situation made worse by bad decisions, like keeping a control console for an orbiting nuke in the city that had already been trashed by the Big G once and in all likelihood would be his target again... Derp.

The art is a bit of a mixed blessing. Though the majority of the line work is pretty good, the black and white presentation is a bit of a problem. Though it depends on the story and artists involved, I've never been a big fan of black and white comics and manga (just a personal preference), so the lack of color kinda sticks out for me. At the same time, however, this also emphasizes the darkness and shadows cast onto Godzilla and his rampages, which often makes for a powerful and imposing image.

Overall, in comparison to the American cut of the film, this comic (and the film it's based on) really is the superior version of the story. It's narrative flows more smoothly, and it's lack of... political editing... makes it a lot less cliché.


36 months ago
Score 0
Wow, Godzilla returns?!


20 months ago
Score 0
Wounder where he went?
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Dark Horse