PopCultHQ reviews GODZILLA: Unnatural Disasters TPB from IDW Publishing. Available May 26th, the creative team for this trade paperback features writing by Jeff Prezenkowski, Jon Vankin, Mike Raicht, Chris Mowry, and Bobby Curnow, art from Matt Frank, Simon Gane, Tony Parker, E.J. Su, and Dean Haspiel, colors by Josh Perez, Ronda Pattison, Ian Herring, and Priscilla Tramontano, and letters from Chris Mowry.
Here is PopCultHQ’s Spoiler-Free Review of…
GODZILLA: Unnatural Disasters TPB
“The Underdog” featuring Anguirus
“Lifespan” featuring Rodan
“Secrets” featuring Titanosaurus
“Smog of War” featuring Hedorah
“From a Great Height” featuring Kumonga
Cover Artist: James Stokoe
The King of the Monsters is back in this compendium collecting three series: Legends, In Hell, and Rage Across Time!
In a world where monsters roam freely, some stories have been lost to time… until NOW! In Legends, the kaiju of Godzilla’s fearsome rogues’ gallery get the spotlight. Featuring Anguirus, Rodan, Titanosaurus, Hedorah, and Kumonga!
Then, meet Godzilla’s greatest adversary of all time–the impossible tortures of Hell! It’s a monster battle that takes you through the depths of the underworld.
Move over dinosaurs… monsters used to rule the planet! In Rage Across Time, travel to different time periods to examine the origin of myths that fueled nightmares: Feudal Japan, ancient Greece, medieval England, and classic Rome!
PopCultHQ’s Comic Book Review:
GODZILLA: Unnatural Disasters TPB
Godzilla, mightiest of all the movie monsters, is a creature whose influence has touched the lives of many over the years. As both a source of inspiration and a means for telling new tales, it is safe to say that he will always remain a fixed idea in the hearts and minds of pop culture fans throughout the ages. Now the time has come to see what happens when the might of Godzilla reaches down through the ages. He is a force of nature nothing can stop. It is time to get ready for Godzilla: Unnatural Disasters.
Writing: One of the things that is fun about TPBs like this is that a lot of really bright creatives come together to contribute to the project. That can also be a bit of a detriment as well, because while the teams are great, their playbooks are less so. There are some really strong stories/scripts in this book. Not only do they challenge the overall concept of Godzilla as a monster, they do it in a way that puts the beast out of its usual setting into different times and places. Sadly, some of said stories/scripts, while terrific initially, don’t pan out the way one expects them.
Art: That same creative joining which brings the different groups together to work on a book like Godzilla: Unnatural Disasters, brings in lots of different artists. Each of them clearly talented individuals. However, some of the art, like some of the scripts, just doesn’t fit within the wheelhouse of telling Godzilla stories. Readers, art lovers, and Godzilla fans will for sure appreciate one thing – the different takes on the King of the Monsters and some of the crazy stuff the big guy gets up to thrashing his way across the printed page.
Colors: Color choices for the various stories were intriguing. Lots of different hues for the hide, spines, and atomic breath that are associated with giant monster movies. And especially the color palettes utilized for other major monsters that show up along the way. Plus some really terrific scenery and fights. Full-on, epically-realized, giant monster mayhem, rendered in gorgeous colors carefully chosen to fit the tales within.
Letters: Lettering can be a challenging task. Whether it’s a single issue, a whole series or, in this case, a trade paperback full of stories, art, and colors by different teams. But one thing is certain, the individual who took on the task to letter this book did one heck of a job. And clearly got to have some fun as well. After all, it takes a certain kind of talent to letter Godzilla bellowing out that mighty cry as he trashes major metropolitan areas. Top-notch job to a top-notch letterer.
PopCultHQ’s overall assessment:
While there are things about this book that don’t line up 100%, it has a lot of heart to it. The groups that contributed stories to it put a lot of effort into their parts. Everyone worked hard and gave it the full-on, good ol’ college try to bring these different Godzilla stories to life. And in spite of the fact that some of the scripts and art missed the mark for this reviewer, let it be known that it was still a very enjoyable read.
4 out of 5 Stars
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About IDW Publishing:
IDW Publishing stands proudly at the forefront of printed visual entertainment, cultivating a formidable library of world-renowned licensed brands and creator-owned original IP. Its diverse array of comic books, graphic novels, and art books deliver reading enjoyment to fans of all ages. Its award-winning imprints The Library of American Comics, Yoe! Books, and Artist Editions preserve the valuable cultural history of the sequential art medium, while titles under the critically acclaimed Top Shelf and Black Crown banners celebrate fiercely independent voices. IDW Publishing is a division of IDW Media Holdings, Inc. (OTCQX: IDWM), a fully integrated media company with robust offerings in publishing, tabletop gaming, multimedia entertainment, and art exhibition via the San Diego Comic Art Gallery.