6/6/19

UPDATED: Do You Have Any of These Godzilla VHS Tapes?


This is an update from a previous post!
If you have any of these American Godzilla videos, I want to buy them!!!

TOP (left to right)
1) Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster (UAV, 1994)
2) Godzilla vs. Monster Zero (Simitar, 1998, Blockbuster version with orange sticker, poster or not)
3) Godzilla vs. Sea Monster (Beech/Videoline; date unknown)
BOTTOM (left to right):
4) Son of Godzilla (Beech/Videoline; date unknown)
5) Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster (Hollywood Home Theater, unkown if this is even a USA-made tape)
6) Ghidrah the Three-Headed Monster (Beech/Videoline; date unknown)

From my own research, these are the last Godzilla VHS that I need to complete my collection of Godzilla films on VHS! If you are interested in seeing the over 160 Godzilla & Toho kaiju VHS releases, you can view my separate page called GODZILLA: American VHS 1983-2002.

If you own any of these tapes, please contact me at samtheq@juno.com.  Even if you aren't interested in selling them, and can provide some of the unknown details, or decent scans for the page linked above, it would be hugely helpful!

6/4/19

Lego Empire Strikes Back Bounty Hunters Diorama!


I've been wanting to make a diorama of this scene for years now, and since Lego has FINALLY GIVEN US A ZUCKUSS minifigure, it can now be done.


Thank you to my Danish overlords for FINALLY GIVING US THE LAST BOUNTY HUNTER.

"THAT man is playing Galaga!"

4/24/19

GODZILLA vs. THE THING Half-Sheet Poster! (American International, 1964)

The "before" (see bottom of article for "after").
There is hardly a more iconic American Godzilla poster than the one for GODZILLA vs. THE THING.  I'm referring to the one-sheet movie poster, which even today is the most common size in your local movie theatre.  So let's start with that!


This poster is one of my top 5 favorite American Godzilla posters.  It's endearing for several reasons to me.  Right away, it's an awesome and incredible piece of artwork, by prolific movie poster artist Reynold Brown.  It has form, motion, and composition that other posters could only dream about.  Secondly, I have a huge admiration for the completely bonkers and over-the-top ad campaign that American International dreamed up.  (I keep trying not to use the word "ballyhoo," but I just can't resist.  So: ballyhoo.)  Changing Mothra to "The Thing" was one, well, thing...but refusing to show her on the poster was a stroke of mad genius.  Especially because some people would possibly remember that Mothra had been in a film of her own a few years earlier (but released by a different studio, in this case, Columbia Pictures)...but let's not forget about the fact that there was already a monster laying claim to the title of THE THING, from the 1951 film.  I've never thought about it in this way before, but do you think that some movie fans thought Godzilla was going to be fighting James Arness? Probably not.

But I digress, as I usually do.  The one-sheet poster was amazing enough, but the half-sheet took it to another entire level.  If you know anything about movie posters, you know that it wouldn't be a huge overstatement to say that the majority of half-sheet movie posters merely present the same artwork of the one-sheet in a different layout.  However, the half-sheet for this film had secondary artwork that was so good, it got its own unique presentation. A squirming mass of thorny tentacles (ironically predicting Biollante 25 years early) loom forth from behind a huge label reading "CENSORED"...with a William Castle-like warning that this monster just may be too terrifying for you to withstand.  How's that for enticing an audience? It's so good, it just boggles the mind.

Now, the secondary artwork isn't confined to only the half-sheet poster.  It's on the window card, the pressbook, and about 1/2 of the newspaper ads!  AI had two stellar paintings, so they got plenty of use from both.

Here are both of Brown's original paintings, minus the graphics and lettering, from a very providential magazine article (it looks like STARLOG to me, but if anyone knows, I'll correct my assumption):

Imagine--somebody somewhere owns these glorious originals. I hope they are properly framed and displayed prominently!
This has been a long-winded way to get back to my own half-sheet poster, but as you can see, I'm quite excited about it.  What was very interesting was that the seller was the original owner, and, as a kid, had actually asked his local theatre in Ohio if he could have it, in the fall of 1964!  I assured him it was going to a house full of framed Godzilla posters and lobby cards--in fact, it's perpendicular to the wall displaying the one-sheet version--and he was pleased to know it would have a good home!

I use my local Michael's framers, because they are conscientious and use archival and acid-free materials.  They were kind enough to "iron" the poster for me in the dry-mounting press and get some of the wrinkles out!

4/19/19

The Godzilla Little Golden Book (Golden, 19??)


I am very pleased to present a little-known American Godzilla collectible today.  It's seldom discussed in fan circles, and some even deny its existence.  Legend has it that no one has ever even had a complete conversation about it, because somebody always runs away screaming...but here it is, for the first time anywhere.  Enjoy!





MAYBE if you watch Ebay for years and years, you might get your own!

4/17/19

Amazing Godzilla, Mothra, and Mysterians Lobby Cards!

Recently, I scored the following amazing lobby cards:
KING KONG vs. GODZILLA, featuring neither contestant as they would appear in the actual film!
Mothra's larva seemingly directs a terrified crowd!
Note she is hand-colored and yellow!
An extremely exciting Mysterians lobby card that features Moguera! (I always forget whether the vintage one's name has a "U" in it.)

And finally, ending a long era of searching, a KING OF THE MONSTERS card of my very own.  This card is shortly going to the framer's so that it can be on my living room wall as soon as possible.

3/29/19

King Kong vs. Godzilla (Action Figure, NECA, 2019)


They did it again.  Just when I was miffed at NECA for doubling down on Shin Godzilla, and wasting time on spurious anachronistic repaints (seen here), their next release more than makes up for it.  Originally slated to come out last fall, the release date for this figure was mysteriously pushed to Spring 2019, to line up closer to some Hollywood movie...hmm...anyhow, the entire front of the box is the Japanese poster, so you know you can't go wrong.  Let's look a bit closer...


Just like the NES Video Game Godzilla figure from 2015, this new figure has a fancy window-box packaging that is quite nice.  The front is held by a velcro (TM) tab, and behind the transparent tray is another backdrop of Mt. Fuji.  I neglected to take a photo of the back of the box, but it's also amazing, with large Japanese text pointing out features (with translation beneath), almost like a vintage Toho trailer.  All in all, very fun packaging. I can't imagine anyone throwing it away! It'd be blasphemy!


This Godzilla suit is well-beloved among fans from both sides of the ocean.  For many Americans, this thick-thighed, frog-headed wonder was their first taste of Japanese kaiju delight--and in color, even.  For the Japanese, this famous suit excitedly dared to challenge the American Kong, with a box-office record that still stands unmatched today among Godzilla films.
The figure is hefty, as it should be, and looks great. It's weird, the eyes on my figure looked completely right until I took this photo, from this angle. I don't think there's any paint variance weirdness going on; just an anomaly of view.


I didn't compare bodies, but it doesn't appear that NECA reused anything in making this unique Godzilla suit.  Even the tail is blunter than usual (again, as it should be)! He's just lovely.


He has all the posability of the previous figures (by the way, this is figure #12 if you are counting).  What I wonder is, will he be available at Target stores? The second Shin Godzilla was said to be an "exclusive," and still ended up there. We shall see.  With the film coming up, I would bet money on it.


A couple of figures ago, NECA began to include atomic breath "beam-ray" effects, which is a nice touch.  The best part about this one is that it has a semi-circular end that fits into the back of the figure's mouth.  This holds it in place, but the figure doesn't look dumb without it.  The worst part about this piece is the completely white coloring...it would be a good spout for any whale dioramas you happen to be working on.


In summary, this figure is a must-have, must-buy essential.  I can only pray that NECA will stay in this vintage territory they've ventured into, and after that, give us a beautiful Godzilla 2000.

3/8/19

Do You Have Any of These Godzilla VHS Tapes From the USA?


(UPDATED Version of this post can be found here:)

This feels like one of those old comic book ads, like "DO YOU HAVE THIS RARE PENNY? YOU MAY BE RICH!" kind of thing.  But, it's true: if you have any of these American Godzilla videos, I want to buy them!!!

[see updated post]

From my own research, these are the last Godzilla VHS that I need to complete my collection of Godzilla films on VHS! If you are interested in seeing the over 160 Godzilla & Toho kaiju VHS releases, you can view my separate page called GODZILLA: American VHS 1983-2002.

If you own any of these tapes, please contact me at samtheq@juno.com.  Even if you aren't interested in selling them, and can provide some of the unknown details, or decent scans, it would be hugely helpful.

2/15/19

The Things That I See (continued)

In no particular order, here are some random things I've encountered in the last few months.  

First up, from Ebay, was a 1996 catalog by "Hollywood Archives" that included a few storyboards.  In the middle of them was this gem, complete with their description:


Umm...I don't remember this scene.  Or even seeing this storyboard anywhere before.  Also, I am not sure that is even what's going on here.  Moving on...

While we are on the subject of Star Wars, I've been re-reading the newspaper strips, which have been very nicely reprinted over the last year, and here is a panel from volume 2:


Poor Dengar can't catch a break.  Here's another oddity from Ebay:


Unfortunately, auctions like this one that involve deformed potato chips or particularly-burned toast have become all-too-common in today's world.  Also, it did not sell.

Here's a FAIL from Wikipedia that cracked me up.  Note the photo's caption!


This seems as good a place as any to put this photo.  My collection of Chinese "BootLego" characters continues to grow slowly.  As you can see, some are real winners (that Lego needs to make), but some just aren't.  The large Lizard was a particular disappointment, and needs to be repainted.  



Lastly, I was admiring the U.S. poster for GHIDRAH THE THREE HEADED MONSTER....did you ever notice how the artist sort of phoned in Rodan? And how he looks like a Bat-a-rang? 

Scientifically-enhanced close-up photo provided by handheld lithium-powered
telecommunication device(TM)
So, therefore, insert one time-wasting Photoshop here:

2/11/19

GODZILLA vs. THE BIONIC MONSTER Handbill/Flyer (1977)


Here is an amazing find--a flyer (or possibly handbill, although technically small for that) for GODZILLA vs. THE BIONIC MONSTER, before the name was changed to "COSMIC."  It measures 8.5 x 5.5 inches.  There can't be too many of these still around!

2/1/19

The Kaiju DVD Shelves at The Sphinx


Recently, I was re-working my DVD shelves, and adding in all of the wonderful reconstructions done by Red Menace (you really should look these up--if you don't like torrents, you can download them hassle-free at archive.org, for instance).  I figured it was a good time to take a few photos.  


It's still a pity that the second season of the Hanna-Barbera GODZILLA never got an official release. That would be a good Blu-Ray reconstruction-style project for somebody.


I just had enough room to squeeze in some American contenders.  Bonus points if you know that UNKNOWN ISLAND is a super-early example of "suitmation!"

Maybe someday I will go back and get whatever DVD's I'm missing (there's a GoodTimes KOTM, for instance), but I'm too consumed with VHS at the moment.  I'm down to the single-digits for Godzilla VHS: only 9 remaining that I know of!