Transforming Mechagodzilla

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Transforming Mechagodzilla
Transforming Mechagodzilla concept art by "Hurricane" Ryu Hariken
Alternate names Mechagodzilla,
Mechagodzilla (Ohrai Noriyoshi Poster Ver.)
Written by Wataru Mimura
Designed by Shinji Nishikawa, Minoru Yoshida,
Ryu Hariken
Planned for Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II (early drafts)
Concept history Berserktransforming Mechagodzilla
Super Mechagodzilla, MOGUERA

A transforming Mechagodzilla appeared in Wataru Mimura's early drafts for the 1993 Godzilla film, Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II. Capable of splitting apart into multiple vehicles and recombining, the mecha would have faced and defeated both Godzilla and White Rodan before ultimately being defeated by the revived Godzilla. This Mechagodzilla's design has become fairly popular among the fanbase, owing to its appearance on the advance poster for Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II drawn by Noriyoshi Ohrai, based on Shinji Nishikawa's design for the character. As such, it has even received an official figure.

Name

This incarnation of Mechagodzilla has no official distinct name, as it was simply known as "Mechagodzilla" during development of Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II. The Tamashii MIX figure of this Mechagodzilla is called Mechagodzilla (Ohrai Noriyoshi Poster Ver.) (メカゴジラ(生頼範義ポスターVer.),   Mekagojira Ōrai Noriyoshi Posutā Bājon), referencing Noriyoshi Ohrai's advance poster.

Development

Screenwriter Wataru Mimura wrote a series of drafts for Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II that ultimately shaped the final product. Utilizing the concept of a human-built Mechagodzilla, Mimura's drafts included a version of Mechagodzilla composed of seven individual vehicles that could combine together and divide.[1] This version of Mechagodzilla is accompanied by the flying machine Garuda, which operates independently of the seven Mechagodzilla vehicles. Kawakita, worrying that seven individual vehicles would be too difficult to realize onscreen, reduced the number of vehicles to two: a tank called the Gundalva and a watercraft called the Naga. Additionally, the aerial Garuda would be able to attach itself to Mechagodzilla's back. Shinji Nishikawa prepared a great deal of concept art for the transforming Mechagodzilla, both the seven-vehicle version and the revised two-vehicle version. Noriyoshi Ohrai used Nishikawa's transforming Mechagodzilla design along with his female Rodan design on his advance poster for Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla, although neither design would make it into the finished film.[2] In addition to Nishikawa, both Minoru Yoshida and "Hurricane" Ryu Hariken prepared concept art of Mechagodzilla.

While no final design for Mechagodzilla was chosen, many of the proposed designs attempted to emulate the square, angular appearance of the Showa Mechagodzilla. Kawakita requested Katsushi Murakami of Bandai to create a new design for the mecha, which opted for a futuristic, curved and shiny silver design in place of the gritty angular transforming Mechagodzilla designs. Most importantly, it lacked the transformation gimmick of the other designs.[2] Kawakita was pleased with Murakami's take, and Minoru Yoshida developed it further into a final design.[1][2]

Design

The transforming Mechagodzilla's appearance is reminiscent of both the Showa Mechagodzilla and the final design of the Heisei Mechagodzilla, with the addition of being able to split into seven different ships.[1] Eventually, this was reduced to just two vehicles, with Mechagodzilla's upper body becoming a jet, and its lower body becoming a tank.[2] This feature was reused, albeit heavily toned down through the use of the Garuda and Mechagodzilla combining to create Super Mechagodzilla in the final film, and also inspired MOGUERA being able to split into the Land Moguera and Star Falcon for Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla.

History

Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II (early drafts)

Considered draft

Mechagodzilla initially battles a pair of Rodans on Adonoa Island, killing the male and sending its mate crashing into the ocean. After being forced to retreat following a first battle with Godzilla, Mechagodzilla is redeployed when the female Rodan is revived as White Rodan after feeding on a nuclear submarine. Mechagodzilla kills White Rodan, but Godzilla returns for a final battle. While Mechagodzilla successfully kills Godzilla with its G-Crusher weapon, Garuda's unstable nuclear reactor explodes and the radiation released revives Godzilla, who promptly destroys all seven vehicles composing Mechagodzilla.[3]

Preparatory draft

This draft kept Mechagodzilla's role mostly unchanged, although the Gundalva was to battle two Pteranodons on Adonoa Island rather than the combined Mechagodzilla taking on a male and female Rodan. When the female Pteranodon mutates into White Rodan, Mechagodzilla fights and kills it, then kills Godzilla before Garuda's explosion revives him. The revitalized Godzilla then destroys Mechagodzilla as it tries to separate and escape.

Gallery

Trivia

  • The early Mechagodzilla's transformation ability is reminiscent of the mecha King Joe from Tsuburaya Productions' Ultra Series, which separates into a set of four ships that can then reassemble into King Joe to battle opponents.
  • The Kaiju Guide entry for Super Mechagodzilla in the PlayStation 3 and 4 Godzilla game references the transforming Mechagodzilla.
  • As part of their new Tamashii MIX line of figures, Tamashii Nations created a figure of the transforming Mechagodzilla. As the Tamashii MIX line features figures with the ability to transform, this figure can split apart into different vehicles as originally envisioned.
  • This Mechagodzilla's design inspired the new Mechagodzilla design created for the character's appearance in the 2018 Ready Player One film adaptation.[4]

References

This is a list of references for Transforming Mechagodzilla. 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: [1]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Toho Special Effects Movie Complete Works. Village Books. p. 239. 28 September 2012. ISBN: 9784864910132.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Heisei Godzilla Perfection. ASCII Media Works. pp. 60-64, 131-135. 2012. ISBN: 978-4-04-886119-9.
  3. Wataru Mimura Interview
  4. [1]

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