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Best Introduction to Godzilla/Kaiju for a 4 year old? 
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Destoroyah
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Man, this is hard, since my first one was when I was 7-8 (Godzilla '85). I'd advise against that one; the POV shots of people getting stepped on, and the overall dark tone, gave me one of the most vivid nightmares I've ever had. (It didn't stop my love for the big guy, happily.)

I'd vote for Son of Godzilla, Godzilla's Revenge, or Godzilla vs. Mothra (90s). If you are okay with a little blood or slightly adult themes, Godzilla vs. Megalon, Ghidorah the Three-Headed Monster, Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla, and Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster are good. The 90s Mothra trilogy would be safe, although they're pretty damn terrible, and aimed a bit more at girls from what I could tell.

There's also Gappa and The X From Outer Space; both are pretty safe, if not exactly good (I imagine he'd love the monsters, though.)



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Mon Aug 20, 2012 7:42 pm
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I vaguely remember being exposed to one of the Daimajin movies when I was about that age. I remember nothing about the movie except when the storm whipped up and this big stone idol started walking. The image that stayed with me most vividly, I still recall it in detail today exactly as my four-year-old brain perceived it, was Daimajin lifting this huge stone and squishing a guy with it. There was a splash of blood on the rock and I was simultaneously repulsed and utterly hooked on kaiju movies from that time until now.

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Tue Aug 21, 2012 2:14 pm
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Ah, and where he pulls a giant spike from his head, and impales the villain to a wall with it?
Only in Japan, baby.

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Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:38 pm
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A vaguely remember watching Destroy All Monsters and cheering when Minya kills one of Gheodrah's heads.

I knew who Minya was, remembered his donkey cries and smoke puffs, but I don't recall seeing a Godzilla movie before Destroy All Monsters. Kids seem to like Minya though.


Wed Aug 22, 2012 1:49 pm
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Juniejune wrote:
A vaguely remember watching Destroy All Monsters and cheering when Minya kills one of Gheodrah's heads.

I knew who Minya was, remembered his donkey cries and smoke puffs, but I don't recall seeing a Godzilla movie before Destroy All Monsters. Kids seem to like Minya though.


Yeah...but most of us grow out of it. Just sayin'...

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Wed Aug 22, 2012 5:52 pm
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MegaLemur wrote:
Even though Gamera was supposed to be the "friend of children" Godzilla alternative, I'd actually say most of his movies were too dark and violent for a four year old (especially the '90s trilogy). Possible Gamera introduction, though: the most recent movie Gamera: Little Braves about a little boy raising a baby Gamera. Starts out with some decent monster action, too, although it hits a pretty slow half hour lull before things ramp up towards the end again.

Yeah, I'd advise "use your own discretion" for all of Gamera's movies. Even Gamera The Brave (the title Media Blasters released it under) has the bad monster Zedus eating people, Gamera getting impaled by Zedus's tongue, and at the climax ripping said tongue out by the roots.

A lot of Gamera's films have a very child-like mentality, but again they're all quite violent. Even the very first Gamera movie, which is otherwise bloodless, features Gamera deliberately roasting people alive. There is always the incredibly goofy Gamera The Super Monster, which is the Godzilla's Revenge of Gamera flicks--almost all of its effects footage is just recycled from the preceding Gamera films. I don't recall how much of the bloodiness is retained, but I think it's somewhat lessened. And the goofy plot revolves around flying spacewomen teaming up with a little boy and Gamera to fight space pirates in a Star Destroyer (yes, it's even introduced by flying over the camera), their evil spacewoman subordinate, and all of Gamera's previous foes.

It's definitely childish, in other words.

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Fri Aug 24, 2012 1:54 am
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late entry here, but don't forget the Ultraman series...

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Wed Sep 26, 2012 7:53 pm
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Destoroyah
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RichCo wrote:
late entry here, but don't forget the Ultraman series...


You have to go through and pick out safe ones, though. I know Ultra 7 got pretty rough with his foes. I watched the entire original series for the first time last year, and some of them were surprisingly violent and brutal.

Off-hand, I think episodes 1-5, 14, 15, 34 and 35 would be just fine. Episodes 6, 8 and 10, among others, feature pretty nasty things happening to monsters. DO NOT pick Episode 12. I am a thorough, unrepentant gorehound; what Ultraman did to Dorongo in that episode was utterly shocking and a bit sickening, despite being tactically sound. Even Zone Fighter, who apparently spent a few hours every day dreaming up new and horrible tortures to inflict on his opponents, never pulled this particular stunt as far as I'm aware.



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Wed Sep 26, 2012 11:27 pm
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The Rev. D.D. wrote:
DO NOT pick Episode 12. I am a thorough, unrepentant gorehound; what Ultraman did to Dorongo in that episode was utterly shocking and a bit sickening, despite being tactically sound.


You have me at a disadvantage, sir? I do not know what happened in ep. 12, but now I simply HAVE to know.

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Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:41 pm
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Bergerjacques wrote:
The Rev. D.D. wrote:
DO NOT pick Episode 12. I am a thorough, unrepentant gorehound; what Ultraman did to Dorongo in that episode was utterly shocking and a bit sickening, despite being tactically sound.


You have me at a disadvantage, sir? I do not know what happened in ep. 12, but now I simply HAVE to know.

Okay, so at this point in the episode Dodongo already has both his eyes shot out, but to add insult to injury Ultraman appears, lands on his back, and rides him like a pony before finally putting him out of his misery.

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Tue Oct 02, 2012 6:30 am
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Destoroyah
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MegaLemur wrote:
Bergerjacques wrote:
The Rev. D.D. wrote:
DO NOT pick Episode 12. I am a thorough, unrepentant gorehound; what Ultraman did to Dorongo in that episode was utterly shocking and a bit sickening, despite being tactically sound.


You have me at a disadvantage, sir? I do not know what happened in ep. 12, but now I simply HAVE to know.

Okay, so at this point in the episode Dodongo already has both his eyes shot out, but to add insult to injury Ultraman appears, lands on his back, and rides him like a pony before finally putting him out of his misery.


Well, there you go, now I don't have to be coy.

Dorongo had some nasty eye beams, so Ultraman decided to solve the problem by graphically blasting out one, then the other, of its eyes (I put it that way because he takes his time getting to the second one). Considering that up to that point in the series we'd mostly just been blowing up empty suits, it comes as a huge shock. By the time he jumped on the poor thing's back, I was starting to wonder who I was supposed to be rooting for.

Not an isolated incident, either; I'm sure we're more familiar with Ultraman tearing off Jirass' neck frill and playing matador with it.

It's even more incongruous considering how relatively gentle he was handling some monsters (Gavadon and Seabozu come to mind).



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Tue Oct 02, 2012 10:43 pm
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The Rev. D.D. wrote:
Dorongo had some nasty eye beams, so Ultraman decided to solve the problem by graphically blasting out one, then the other, of its eyes (I put it that way because he takes his time getting to the second one). Considering that up to that point in the series we'd mostly just been blowing up empty suits, it comes as a huge shock. By the time he jumped on the poor thing's back, I was starting to wonder who I was supposed to be rooting for.

Not an isolated incident, either; I'm sure we're more familiar with Ultraman tearing off Jirass' neck frill and playing matador with it.

It's even more incongruous considering how relatively gentle he was handling some monsters (Gavadon and Seabozu come to mind).



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Seriously, Ultraman had some goddamn issues.

Let's not forget that he also commits genocide in the second episode.

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Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:13 am
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The Rev. D.D. wrote:
Dorongo had some nasty eye beams, so Ultraman decided to solve the problem by graphically blasting out one, then the other, of its eyes (I put it that way because he takes his time getting to the second one).

Been a while since I've seen the episode, but weren't his eyes shot out by the Science Patrol (Arashi and an untransformed Hayata)? They were always ready to use excessive force on munstas (like poor Skydon...)

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Wed Oct 03, 2012 11:15 am
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Son of Spam wrote:
Let's not forget that he also commits genocide in the second episode.

Right you are. I'd forgotten about that. Granted, Baltans seemed to pop up all the time to bedevil various Ultras, but certainly not for lack of Ultraman's trying.

MegaLemur wrote:
The Rev. D.D. wrote:
Dorongo had some nasty eye beams, so Ultraman decided to solve the problem by graphically blasting out one, then the other, of its eyes (I put it that way because he takes his time getting to the second one).

Been a while since I've seen the episode, but weren't his eyes shot out by the Science Patrol (Arashi and an untransformed Hayata)? They were always ready to use excessive force on munstas (like poor Skydon...)

Having only watched the series once through, you may be correct. I want to say now that SP got the first one, and Ultraman the second. I may have to go back to that one.

Yeah, some of the monsters seemed rather innocuous, all things considered, but Ultraman rarely cared. Skydon was one of them. Gamakujira got a pretty harsh reception as well (rocket up the ass leading to midair collision with Ultraman that makes him pull a Jaws: The Revenge) just for eating pearls and oysters. Hell, he mercilessly bullied around Seabozu (although it actually survived the episode, which was pretty shocking), and even poor Gavadon would've eaten it had some kids not managed to convince Ultraman to show mercy for once in his life.

I'm really starting to rethink this whole "Ultraman as hero" thing!



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He had even more in common with Zone Fighter than I thought...


Wed Oct 03, 2012 7:33 pm
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I'm really jonesing for some original-series ultraman right now.

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