This is the big one folks. Well, really just for fans. If you’re not a fan of the Godzilla franchise, then the words ‘Rodan vs. Titanosaurus’ will mean nothing, but for longtime and hardcore fans like myself it means everything. It’s matches like this that get fan fics at sites like TOHO Kingdom, it’s a fun one. I mean, it’s one of the few battles where you take a look and say “Huh, I actually don’t know who would win.” I like these two monsters a lot, my excitement for this issue was the strongest in awhile. I thought this would be the big payoff, since the previous ones had been just average. After reading it, only these words came to mind, “You gotta be kidding, that’s it?” If you’re expecting a long and satisfying fight between the two, you’re going to be disappointed, I was. The covers give the impression that this will be a huge kaiju smackdown, I expected better.
Here’s the official description from IDW:
Unable to take down Titanosaurus on their own, Boxer and the Monster Kill Crew decide to fight monster with monster! After luring Rodan to the battlefield, the Crew is hoping for a two-for-one score. But in a world of kaiju, things seldom go as planned! Plus, the Crew starts to ask the big question: Why are the monsters reappearing now? They might not like the answer!
I really want to like this series, I do, but when issues like this happen, my tolerance deteriorates. At least in Kingdom of Monsters, when there was a fight, there was a fight. Take the battle with Godzilla and Ghidorah in Kingdom of Monsters #8 for example. While it was sometimes a little sloppy, it was long and satisfying. Let me give it to you straight, this is a story all about Boxer with the monsters as backdrops that are easily taken care of. See the nice Titanosaurus cover? Expecting him to look awesome? Well let’s just say he’s treated like a joke, not as bad as Kumonga or Battra, but still not very good. (It’s not Rodan that knocks him out.) That’s not to say this issue was bad, it wasn’t awful. The fight between the two was well choreographed, blows are felt. If this fight could have been the actual issue, it would have been a lot better.
I find the art rather interesting. The monsters look fantastic, not so much the humans. Rodan matches his Showa counterpart 100%, some great panels with this guy. (A major improvement over his non-Rodan look in Kingdom of Monsters.) Titanosaurus also looks good, his opening splash page was fantastic. This time, all the covers are triple A plus. The main cover shows a beautifully drawn headshot of ol’ Titano. Cover B by the fan favorite Matt Frank showcases a fierce looking Final Wars styled Rodan squaring off with an equally fierce looking Titanosaurus. That one is truly an eye-catcher. The RI variant by Jeff Zornow is my personal favorite of the three. It shows more realistic versions of the two, with Titanosaurus attacking another Final Wars styled Rodan with a train, one of the best covers I’ve seen.
Overall, I’m sad to say that this is the most disappointing issue yet. The fight we’re all waiting for is not even half the comic. Boxer is really getting on my nerves now, just a guy you want to punch. I’m sorry, his gruff demeanor has gone to the point where I can call him a jerk. (Maybe that was the purpose.) The forth issue in this series gets yet again the same rating, average.