Ahead of Godzilla vs. Kong’s release, a pair of graphic novels are launching to help set the stage for the Titans’ epic showdown that fans will want to pick up.
Legendary Comics is helping fans prepare for the ultimate battle between Godzilla and Kong with two new graphic novels. Kingdom Kong and Godzilla: Dominion are both launching on March 30th (just ahead of the film’s debut on the 31st) and I recently had the chance to give them both a read to let other fans know if they’re worth grabbing.
I’m lumping these both together because, despite being two completely different stories, they really complement each other in terms of setting things up. Also it’s my site and I do what I want….
Let’s kick off with Kingdom Kong, which I think serves as the most direct influence on the upcoming film that fans will want to check out. Mostly because it gives us a look at what Skull Island has been like in the 50-ish years since they explored the island in Kong: Skull Island.
During that period of time (the end of the Vietnam War), the organization Monarch was still in its infancy and mostly in the shadows. The comic, which takes place after the events of Godzilla: King of the Monsters, shows how busy their scientists have been in documenting the monsters of the island and keeping tabs on Kong himself. They’ve established a base of operations and are working on a new project to further explore the land of Monsters within the Hollow Earth.
Writer: Marie Anello
On-sale date: March 30, 2021
The new project, headed up by Houston Brooks (played by Corey Hawkins in Skull Island, with the older version of the character played by Joe Morton in King of the Monsters), calls for some experience pilots. They’ll be needed as they break through the barrier separating the monsters’ world and our own. This brings Audrey, ostensibly the main character in the story, to the island.
A skilled pilot, she’s looking to get “back in the saddle” after a horrible encounter with one of Godzilla’s rivals that left her best friend/wingmate in a coma. Their scientific mission is thrown into jeopardy, however, when the ancient Mayan god, Camazotz, a bat-like Titan emerges. Not only will Kong have to duke it out with his greatest foe yet, but Audrey will have to overcome her fear/trauma to help him along the way.
It’s a fairly straightforward story, but its hints and teases really offer a good look at the state of Kong and his home as we head into the new film. As we’ve seen from the trailers, Godzilla vs. Kong is set to explore the “hollow earth” aspect and Monarch’s work on the island, so getting glimpse of that work in this comic does a great job setting the stage. I also really love how Brooks has become a connecting thread/character for the MonsterVerse and to see him still working within this world.
The new character, Audrey, is interesting enough, though I don’t think enough time was really spent on her story to make it resonate. I love the idea of following more characters who’ve had to deal with the aftermath of Monsters rising up across the world, but the graphic novel doesn’t seem to give her enough room to be fleshed out
Godzilla Dominion—the prequel graphic novel written by Greg Keyes (the Age of Unreason trilogy; three New York Times bestselling Star Wars novels in the New Jedi Order series) with art by Drew Edward Johnson (DC’s Wonder Woman, Supergirl; Legendary Comics’ Godzilla Aftershock)—will feature a unique story that picks up after the events of the film Godzilla: King of the Monsters, where the Titans have risen and the reign of Godzilla has begun. As told entirely from Godzilla’s point of view, the graphic novel brings new insights into the King of Monsters: his habitats, ancient rivalries, encounters with new Titans, and other challenges. As his new era of dominance is tested, a coming confrontation with another King looms.
Writer: Greg Keyes
Artist: Drew Edward Johnson
Colorist: Allen Passalaqua
On-sale date: March 30, 2021