With the epic first trailer for Godzilla: King of the Monsters roaring to life at Comic-Con International, we have our first glimpses at the iconic kaiju that will battle it out for the title of Earth's mightiest creature.
Although we saw a docile Mothra making friends with humans, Rodan razing Capitol Hill and attacking U.S. fighter jets, and of course, King Ghidorah in all of its electrifying glory, one thing in particular stood out: The statement by Dr. Emma Russell (Vera Farmiga) about these monsters being the original rulers of the planet -- the Titans -- and that Earth actually belongs to them.
Her speech may seem philosophical, or even spiritual, at first, but upon closer inspection, it may tease something far more sinister. Her words could very well hint that the movie's villain is her employer, Monarch Sciences, the secret organization that serves as a unifying element of Legendary Pictures' fledgling MonsterVerse.
In 2014's Godzilla, which launched the shared cinematic universe, Monarch was key in locating the monsters. Ken Watanabe's Dr. Ishiro Serizawa spent his entire life searching for the mutated lizard, and when it came time to oppose the winged MUTOs (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organisms), he declared, "Let them fight!"
He wasn't actually endorsing a monster brawl, however. He was simply advocating natural selection, accepting humanity's place on the food chain. Now, Emma, another Monarch scientist, is echoing similar sentiments, labeling mankind as an infection, and the Titans as the cure. Her beliefs motivate her in locating all of the Titans, and it appears she's ready to let them duke it out, so that only the strong will survive (which Monarch hopes will be Godzilla, whom director Gareth Edwards painted as an ally four years earlier).
Seeing as she pushes buttons in a slyly edited trailer before chaos ensues, and her husband Mark (Kyle Chandler) demands to know what she's done, director Michael Dougherty may be hinting that Emma sets the creatures on their collusion course, whether that's by allowing Mothra to escape, or by using her expertise in sonar and acoustics to control Rodan or Ghidorah.
She appears to have embraced the idea that humanity's time is up. The film's synopsis states she was kidnapped, but the trailer shows her working freely, and with a team. Could it be that Monarch, or at least part of the organization, isn't what we thought, and the kidnapping is a cover-up?
Monarch's true intentions may be coming to light, and the organization may not be the explorers depicted in 2016's Kong: Skull Island. Emma, a paleobiologist, is giving off a defeatist vibe, hinting her people could be pushing Earth into its next phase. That her daughter Madison (Millie Bobby Brown of Stranger Things) calls her a monster is obviously another red flag.
Something's definitely afoot, and whether it's Monarch, Emma operating on her own, or Emma with a new shady group, it does seem as if humans are going to be the real villains, risking an obsession with the Titans, and endangering mankind with their theories.
One thing is for sure, Emma is a suspicious character, and given how Monarch's scientists are fascinated by the possibility of these behemoths fighting it out, one has to wonder whether they really have mankind's best interests at heart.
Arriving March 22, 2019, director Michael Dougherty's Godzilla: King of the Monsters stars Vera Farmiga, Ken Watanabe, Sally Hawkins, Kyle Chandler, Millie Bobby Brown, Bradley Whitford, Thomas Middleditch, Charles Dance, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Aisha Hinds and Zhang Ziyi.