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Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed + Talkback • Monster Zero x SciFi Japan - Archive Only

Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed + Talkback

This is the place to discuss Legendary Pictures' Godzilla film and upcoming sequels, as well as Kong: Skull Island and the upcoming Godzilla vs. Kong!! Let everyone know what you think and discuss your thoughts and ideas about the upcoming films!!!!

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Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed + Talkback

Postby Kailem » Thu Aug 17, 2023 10:49 am

Apologies if there was already a thread somewhere about the upcoming Apple TV+ live-action Godzilla show. If there was I didn't see it.

But yeah, it looks like Apple have released the first official images less than an hour ago:

https://twitter.com/DiscussingFilm/status/1692174973736268113?s=20

I've always loved Kurt Russell in anything he's been in, and I've got to say, having him and his son Wyatt Russell playing the same character in different time periods is just an absolutely fantastic idea. I suspect we're probably not going to get a *ton* of Godzilla in the show itself, but either way, this'll be the thing that finally makes me get an Apple TV+ subscription, that's for sure! :D
Last edited by Kailem on Sun Nov 19, 2023 5:56 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby lhb412 » Thu Aug 17, 2023 3:53 pm

Feels like Wyatt and Kurt playing the same guy is a slam dunk idea that someone would do eventually and this was the project lucky enough to make it happen first.

Seeing the '14 design makes me nostalgic! What I'd like, though, is some interesting new monsters.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Benjamin Haines » Sun Aug 20, 2023 8:10 am

Looks cool! Kurt Russell is a legend and it's great to see him added to the Godzilla pantheon. Wyatt Russell really made an impression with his nuanced portrayal of John Walker in Marvel's The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and he also starred in the episode "Playtest" in the third season of Black Mirror. Having the two of them play the same character in different time periods is a killer hook that will hopefully make this series appealing to the broader nerdosphere beyond Godzilla fandom.

Apple posted a press page for the series on their website and several entertainment outlets have covered these first-look photos. Deadline confirms that the series will have 10 episodes.

https://www.apple.com/tv-pr/originals/monarch-legacy-of-monsters/
https://variety.com/2023/tv/news/godzilla-series-title-monarch-photos-1235698195/
https://deadline.com/2023/08/monarch-legacy-of-monsters-apple-series-legendarys-monsterverse-title-photos-1235520968/
https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/tv/tv-news/godzilla-series-apple-tv-title-pics-1235568268/
https://ew.com/tv/godzilla-kurt-russell-wyatt-russell-same-character-monarch-legacy-of-monsters/

The only question at this point is whether this show will premiere before or after Godzilla Minus One. It's so crazy that we've got this series, a new Toho-produced Godzilla movie and a new Hollywood-produced Godzilla/Kong movie all in the works at the same time. That's on top of the Skull Island animated series, Gamera Rebirth, Shin Ultraman, Shin Kamen Rider and Ultraman Blazar. Bountiful times we're living in!
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Kailem » Sun Aug 20, 2023 12:32 pm

Yeah I was just talking about that with some friends the other day. This feels like a new golden age of giant monster content, and the complete polar opposite of those lean, post-Final Wars years where we were just starved of anything giant monster-related for a long, long time. There's so much stuff coming out, it's awesome!! :D

Also I guess Apple TV listings reveal that a certain other character will be appearing in this show (who I won't mention for those who don't want spoilers), but it's definitely got me excited about the possible scope of this and the potential it has to expand the Monsterverse.

*Also* also, apparently the Lee Shaw character that both Kurt and Wyatt Russell are playing actually debuted in the Godzilla: Awakening tie-in comic a few years back, so that's cool that they're pulling in stuff from the EU that they've built up now for this. Again, really gets me hyped about the world-building aspect of this show, as that's something I always love to see in sci-fi worlds like these.

"Seeing the '14 design makes me nostalgic! What I'd like, though, is some interesting new monsters."

Same. I'm honestly not expecting Godzilla to be featured in the show much at all. Just the opening episode (where this Golden Gate Bridge attack from a different angle scene will likely be the very first scene), and then only be referring to rather than seen until maybe the end.

But I definitely *am* hoping we get some cool new monsters too. Again, not so much expecting new Monsterverse spins on classic Toho ones that haven't been seen in the films yet, more so totally original ones either made up for this show or perhaps brought in from the comics or brief King of the Monsters/GvK opening credits that we only got to see for a few seconds.

Either way, I'm definitely hyped!
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby lhb412 » Sun Aug 20, 2023 11:10 pm

Not just a golden age of this stuff being produced; its a golden age of accessibility and availability for the new and old stuff!

I remember going to G-Fest as a 13 year-old and after a childhood of seeking this stuff out the shock of going to a place where everything was just there... it was disorienting! Now the regular world is G-Fest. I saw the new Kamen Rider movie at my local theater full of other human beings. How? The world is topsy-turvy!

Anyway, that still of the events of G '14 from a different angle has me hoping we may be returning to a similar tone to that film. The movie series has veered away into a more wacky, '60s/'70s style of outlandishness, but returning to that grittier, more hard science fiction feel strikes me as very appealing.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Kailem » Tue Aug 22, 2023 3:12 pm

Yeah given that G'14 has really been the only movie in the franchise so far to go with the "grounded" approach if nothing else it might help this show feel a bit more distinct from all the entries we've had since. And it might be a good fit to the likely investigative/espionage-type flavour it sounds like the story will be going for.

And yeah, it's awesome how much stuff is actually available now. I'm working my way through classic Ultra series that have never been available in the UK in any form whatsoever as far as I'm aware (and still aren't), but thanks to region-free Mill Creek Blu-rays I'm finally getting to watch stuff I'd only ever heard about for years now. Not to mention episodes of the latest Ultraman show literally being officially posted online for free at the same time as they air in Japan. And things like the Criterion's Godzilla Showa collection making several of those movies available over here for the first time (even though I'd already imported the DVDs years ago) is fantastic for younger fans who might never have gotten to experience them before.

And with the rise of streaming, once this show is released it'll be out everywhere worldwide at the same time! Now if only we could get some of those Japanese-exclusive special features on these things too, we really would be living in a perfect world! :lol:
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Benjamin Haines » Tue Aug 22, 2023 10:48 pm

I think G'14 is still the best of Legendary's Godzilla movies. I like the bombastic lunacy of G:KotM and GvsK but I'm all for having this show return to the hard sci-fi and mystery approach of that initial film.

Seeing Godzilla's 2014 design again is a nice touch too, although I'm personally expecting him to have even less overall screentime in this series than he did in Singular Point. His name isn't even in this show's title after all. I'm expecting to see MUTOs and Skullcrawlers but I'm hoping some brand new monsters can take the spotlight.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Kailem » Wed Aug 23, 2023 4:28 pm

Yeah the "super science" aspect of Godzilla movies is absolutely something I love, but I do feel like maybe they got to that point just a little *too* fast with the jump from G'14 to KotM. But then it's hard to say they should have gone any slower when it's only a four-movie franchise so far, and Kong also used real-world tech and was set in the past.

And yeah I'd imagine the reason this show is now being called "Monarch: Legacy of Monsters" rather than the previously-announced "Godzilla and the Titans" is precisely because he's not going to be in it very much, and they don't want to give people the expectation that he's going to be appearing in every episode.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Kailem » Thu Sep 07, 2023 1:26 pm

A new teaser poster has been released, and word is the show will be premiering sometime in November:

https://twitter.com/Godzilla_Toho/status/1699833620138008605?s=20

EDIT: And we just got a trailer tease with a now roughly 9-hour countdown!!

https://twitter.com/AppleTV/status/1699950699722035668?s=20
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Kailem » Fri Sep 08, 2023 12:43 pm

The first teaser is out; and it looks really good!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ec27RCzb6qI

Glimpses of Godzilla as well as some new monsters, plus a familiar returning face I didn't expect to see again (at least in the form we saw him in last time; a "young" version of his character was leaked a few weeks ago)! The style does indeed look more reminiscent of G'14, including multiple scenes from that film shown from different angles......and possibly another Monsterverse movie as well! And it's always great to see Kurt Russell in anything.

This looks really cool, and definitely got me even more hyped about it! Oh, and we got a confirmed release date of November 17th!

Got-DAMN, between Gamera Rebirth, this, Godzilla Minus One, Ultraman Blazar, Godzilla x Kong, the Justice League vs Godzilla vs Kong comic, Kong video game and another Skull Island RPG in the works, giant monster fans have got it SO good right now!! :D
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Dai » Sat Sep 09, 2023 7:24 am

Looking good (and very expensive!). I like that they're returning to the Gareth Edwards style of cinematography.

The Godzilla scenes are presumably an episode 1 prologue set during the 2014 movie, just viewed from a different perspective. I suspect that will be the only time we see him until the series finale (if at all), since Legendary will probably want to gear this show as an appetiser for GxK rather than risk upstaging it.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Benjamin Haines » Sat Sep 09, 2023 2:10 pm

Monarch: Legacy of Monsters looks very promising! Between the production values, the ensemble cast and the visible attention to continuity with the first two MonsterVerse films, they seem to be putting a lot of effort into this.

That shot of the monster flying overhead in the forest sure looks a lot like the first shot of Gyaos in Gamera:GOTU. The Gamera trilogy's unspoken influence on Legendary's Godzilla continues!

SciFi Japan has posted Apple's press releases accompanying this trailer and the first-look images from a few weeks ago. They confirm a few character details which need not be considered leaks anymore.

https://www.scifijapan.com/godzilla-toho/monarch-legacy-of-monsters-apple-tv-press-release-for-godzilla-and-titans-lve-action-original-series
https://www.scifijapan.com/godzilla-toho/apple-s-highly-anticipated-monarch-legacy-of-monsters-unveils-monstrous-teaser-trailer-and-sets-global-premiere-for-friday-november-17

Anna Sawai (the character watching Godzilla roar from the bridge) is playing Cate Randa, a relative (presumably granddaughter) of John Goodman's Bill Randa character from Kong: Skull Island. Anders Holm is playing the younger version of Bill Randa for scenes set in the past.

Considering how this show is revisiting at least two scenes from G'14 and at least one scene from K:SI from different perspectives, I wonder if the casting of Holm as a young Bill Randa means that we'll get to see the attack on the USS Lawton naval ship in 1943 which Randa recounted surviving in K:SI. We might finally find out whether that was Godzilla or some other monster that destroyed his ship!

Seeing Goodman reprise his role as Randa was the best surprise in this trailer, as he wasn't listed among the cast in the first press release.

Man, the trailer for this show lands in the same week as the trailer for Godzilla Minus One, and they're both debuting in November! What a time to be a fan!
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby lhb412 » Sat Sep 09, 2023 3:44 pm

Seems everyone clocked what looked like a direct visual reference to GOTU!

It looks like we're going back to Godzilla 2014 in terms of tone and I find that very appealing.

(Possible GodzillaxKong spoilers! Beware!)

I also find it delightful we're seeing that Godzilla '14 design again when, supposedly, he's getting a radical redesign in the new movie.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Benjamin Haines » Sun Sep 10, 2023 9:57 pm

^ Regarding that...


***(begin possible Godzilla x Kong spoilers)***

The rumor is that there will be an in-story reason for Godzilla's changing appearance in the next movie, when he travels down into the Hollow Earth and his exposure to stronger levels of radiation closer to the Earth's core causes him to physically mutate.

***(end possible Godzilla x Kong spoilers)***


Considering how this upcoming show will take place in the immediate aftermath of G'14, I wonder if the show will depict how Godzilla's appearance changed between that film and G:KOTM. Maybe there will be an episode in which he's exposed to a major radiation source that mutates him, or maybe some characters will explain that he absorbed all of the radioactive fallout from the nuke that detonated off the coast of San Francisco and it's causing his feet and his dorsal fins to slowly change shape.

I have to say, I thought it was odd when this series was announced last year as being a direct follow-up to the events of G'14, rather than a spinoff of the previous year's Godzilla vs. Kong, but that seems to have been a very savvy creative decision. This show gets to build on the events of G'14 and Kong: Skull Island while delving into the unexplored history of the MonsterVerse without being bound by any of the Hollow Earth craziness, super-science tech or Alpha Titan shenanigans that the later films have established. I wonder if marathoning the MonsterVerse in the future with this series directly in the middle will make the eventual shift to G:KOTM's over-the-top style seem less abrupt.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Kailem » Fri Oct 13, 2023 1:21 pm

A new trailer is out!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLHsM4bpfxY

More monsters, more Kurt Russell, and more Godzilla! I'm still expecting he'll be taking a back seat to the new ones we've never seen before, but it's cool to see him in a new setting that's not from any of the movies.

I also don't know how it could even be possible, but man would I be happy if they retconned Randa's death in Skull Island. That's still one of my least favourite aspects of that movie, how they just toss John Goodman aside once they actually get to the island and then just casually kill him off. Sam problem I had with Bryan Cranston's character in Godzilla. A very obvious case of "this character's served his purpose and now they're just taking up space, so get rid of them" syndrome (yes that's totally a real syndrome).

Regardless I think this continues to look great! Next month is certainly looking good for giant monster fans! :D

EDIT: This site has also gone live which features some cool little easter eggs:

https://monarch-unlocked.info/
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby lhb412 » Fri Oct 13, 2023 6:28 pm

Shaping up to be one of (if not the most) promising looking MonsterVerse Godzilla project.

Love the classic shot of Godzy shaking the dust off after rising from the earth!
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Benjamin Haines » Fri Oct 13, 2023 7:47 pm

This series keeps looking better and better. That trailer gives me the impression that Godzilla will be glimpsed a few times throughout the show and then the last episode or two will have him front and center. Legendary's recent Skull Island animated series took a similar approach to Kong.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Kailem » Fri Nov 03, 2023 5:16 pm

The first behind-the-scenes look that premiered during the Godzilla Fest stream last night is now up in shiny quality, and it's got a ton of new footage and our best look at some of the new monsters yet!:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEPO1_7WiZE

It also seems like the early reviews and word of mouth on the show are very positive, so I'm definitely only getting even more hyped to see this the closer we get to it!
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Benjamin Haines » Sun Nov 05, 2023 4:16 pm

^ That star-nosed mole monster looks really cool. One time I found a star-nosed mole while hiking down from a peak in the Appalachian Mountains. They're tiny and harmless but they look monstrous!

I like how Wyatt Russell mentions that he and his dad have received lots of offers to play father-and-son characters but what drew them to this series was the prospect of playing the same character in different eras.


The IGN Movie Trailers YouTube page has posted the opening scene from the first episode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MzR62KbGJU

This seems like it might be John Goodman's only scene in the series.


Apple TV's YouTube page posted the opening credits from the first episode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ExcGBd2Jl-0

Notably, Kenji Okuhira and the late Yoshimitsu Banno are credited as producers on this series. They were previously credited as executive producers on Legendary's three Godzilla movies, although they don't seem to be credited at all on Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire. Likewise, Legendary founder Thomas Tull is credited as an executive producer on this series, just as he was on the recent Skull Island animated series, although he also isn't credited on Godzilla x Kong according to IMDB. Michael Dougherty and Zach Shields are credited as consulting producers on this series.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby lhb412 » Fri Nov 17, 2023 10:51 am

Ha! Turns out I had an unclaimed 3 month trial of Apple I never used before. Monarch (and Prehistoric Planet) here I come!
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed

Postby Dai » Sat Nov 18, 2023 10:03 am

The first two episodes are up. Ep 3 will be on Wednesday (22nd).

The most impressive things so far are the huge amount of location filming and the quality of the cinematography. There's an expansive feel to the scope of many scenes that was missing from much of KotM and GvK with their heavier emphasis on sets and green-screen.

The main disappointment so far is the limited amount of kaiju screentime, which was predictable for a US TV series that prioritises realistic effects, but is still a downer. If the first two episodes are any indication, we're looking a one short kaiju scene per episode. I did like the sense of impact the San Francisco attack from G2014 has had on daily life, especially the "Godzilla evacuation route" signage all over Tokyo. It feels a bit weird that the contemporary parts of this show are set in 2015 though, making it feel like a bridge between G2014 and KotM rather than one setting up GxK.

As for the rest of the contemporary scenes, the bulk of the story so far has been concerned with the protagonist's family drama, and I'm struggling to get particularly invested in that. It does have links to Monarch-related mysteries, but it feels like those will be things we've already seen more clearly in the Monsterverse movies (I'm hoping to be proven wrong there). It seems to be gearing up for more of an adventure feel in the next episode though. Meanwhile, the flashback scenes have been picking up the slack on the monster intrigue and adventure side of things, with episode 2 giving our first look at a new kaiju.

Overall, I'm a bit conflicted so far. It's a quality production, and well written, but the contemporary scenes need to kick up the pace a gear. There's a pervading sense of US drama sluggishness that I'm not sure is a good match for a kaiju show.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed + Talk

Postby Kailem » Sun Nov 19, 2023 6:23 am

I guess since we've stalked to talk about the episodes themselves in here we might as well keep this as the "talkback" thread too, rather than make a new one.

I thought the opening two episodes were a great, solid start to the show! I'm invested *enough* in the human family drama so far to be interested in seeing where it goes, and of course the monster scenes were awesome. For sure I'd have liked more of them as well, but I'm keeping my expectations in check on that front purely because, even though this is clearly a big-budget show, they still likely can't afford to be giving us the same amount of monster action as the movies have per minute. Though that could change when we get to that one that looks like it's in a snow setting and seems to be menacing characters directly.

I'm also loving the scope and scale it has. Flashing back not just to one period in time, but multiple years is really cool. Not only does it help flesh out the characters a bit more, but also the world. And I've always been a sucker for world-building. So having them travelling the globe searching for monsters in various different countries and giving us an expanded look at the history of Monarch is exactly the sort of thing I want to see! The second episode seemed to retcon some things we learned in Skull Island, but not in a way where it *directly* breaks those previously established things.

And for sure it feels really cinematic. Like you said Dai, you can tell they actually went to these locations and didn't just greenscreen it all (well, except for some of those sadly slightly too obvious Skull Island shots :P ).

I'm also liking how Monarch as the "bad guys" in the (not) present day stuff is being handled too. They're not an *evil* organisation, so I don't think it would have felt right if they'd been pulling guns on people trying to get their files back or anything like that. Even the "retirement home" we see Shaw in isn't really set up like a prison or anything, just somewhere they've obviously stuck him and said "you'll be staying here, yeah?" And I liked how even though they still had the obligatory scenes of characters doing dangerous things they shouldn't be doing, they at least had they *say* as much and all get on the same page about how dangerous it was (as opposed to "hey look; space cobra!"). Just taking a few moments to acknowledge the danger really can go a long way to convincing an audience that your characters aren't idiots.

And of course Kurt and Wyatt Russell were both great. Mostly Wyatt just because we've only had one scene of Kurt so far, but it was still an awesome moment when he finally showed up. Can't wait to see more now that he's properly in on the action now too.

So yeah, overall I thought this was a really good start to the show, and I can't wait to see more! :D
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed + Talk

Postby Kailem » Sun Dec 03, 2023 2:17 pm

I'm really digging this show so far. It's been really solid, ha good monster action, and is making me care more about the human side of things than I expected. Also: new trailer! Which you obviously, probably shouldn't watch yet if you're not caught up (or just don't want an idea of where the show is heading):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oNjnEFEheh4

And yeah, that looks really good! They're doing one of the things I figured they'd be doing, and it looks like it's gonna be a great ride!

I'd say the extra Monsterverse hype they're building by releasing this all but confirms we'll be getting a Godzilla x Kong trailer in a few hours too! :D
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed + Talk

Postby Benjamin Haines » Mon Dec 04, 2023 11:08 pm

I finally watched the first episode of Monarch tonight. I really dig how smoothly it builds on elements of both G'14 and Kong: Skull Island at the same time. The cinematography is top-quality and this cast already has me invested.
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Re: Monarch: Legacy of Monsters first images revealed + Talk

Postby Dai » Fri Jan 12, 2024 6:43 pm

And that's season 1 wrapped up.

Hmm. My overall feeling is that this was a slick-looking blend of globe-trotting thriller and family drama, but it fell short on pacing and monster action. Even by the lethargic standards of modern US dramas the season climax didn't feel nearly climactic enough. Yes, it was great to have a kaiju battle finally, but that was over all too quickly. Yes, the family-based cathartic events worked well enough, but the arc of this season felt too restrained. The supposed building global peril never materialised in any tangible way. Either they're saving too much for later seasons or they're too boxed in by budget constraints.

We've reached a stage where anything less than photorealistic effects have seemingly become unacceptable in a TV show, and that's a millstone around the neck of a show like this. I can't help but look at the amount of city trashing, monster bashing action we get in an average episode of Ultraman and be disappointed on that front. Obviously that approach wouldn't work for the mainstream prestige drama crowd Monarch is aimed at, but surely there's a middle-ground somewhere.

So what we've ended up with is a pretty decent drama, but not really a kaiju story. I'm glad it exists, and I'm glad I've seen it, but I doubt I'll feel the need to watch this season again. The memorable moments it had were spread too thin and over too soon.
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