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Overview

Bagan (バガン,   Bagan?) is a kaiju created by Toho that was originally planned to appear in the Heisei era Godzilla film series. He eventually made his debut in the 1993 Godzilla game Super Godzilla.

Name

"Bagan" is Indonesian for blueprint or draft. This is interesting, considering that Bagan was planned for several movies but scrapped. However, this might just be a coincidence.

In the original draft of The Return of Godzilla, Bagan was identified under the name "Bakan".

Design

Development

In The Resurrection of Godzilla, Bagan started out as a shapeshifter who could change appearance. It started as an ape-like creature, but after being wounded, it became a dragon-like creature. In the second draft, he had a sea monster-like creature with a dragon-like creature attached to its top. Each time it changed, it healed itself. It dives into the sea and becomes fish-like. Eventually, he combined all three forms at once, forming a hybridized monster with each form stacked on top like a totem pole.

Appearance

Bagan is an armored dragon-like kaiju with copper-colored skin, a ridged neck and abdomen, and two plates on his chest. He has pale gold horns, with a set of curved horns on his head, and a third horn on the edge of his snout with smaller spines on the edges of his maw and the end of his tail, four claws on both of its hands and five on his feet. Bagan also has a large conical spine protruding from each shoulder.

In Godzilla Movie Studio Tour, Bagan is pale white and has red glowing eyes. His underside and the unarmored parts of his body are red and grooved, invoking the appearance of muscle. His horns, claws, spines, and armor accents are black. The chestplates and scales on his pelvic region are dark gray and covered in spikes. Bagan also has several spines coming out of his back, with the shoulder spines longer and having glowing purple orbs.

Roar

Bagan makes a short grumble-like roar at a low pitch.

Origins

Bagan was conceived as an antagonistic kaiju in each of the scripts and concepts he was envisioned for. The original Bagan concept featured in an early draft for The Return of Godzilla portrayed him as a sort of deity with the ability to shapeshift between various forms. For his role in Mothra vs. Bagan, Bagan was described as a dragon-like god of destruction that presided over China in the distant past, and was frozen in the Himalayan mountains when he began to threaten the country.

His origin in Mothra vs. Bagan is maintained in the video game Super Godzilla, which featured Bagan as the final boss. Alien invaders seeking to conquer Earth procured the slumbering Bagan, and used a serum created by Genshiro Shiragami containing genetic material from Godzilla and King Ghidorah to enhance Bagan, so he could overpower the former.

History

The Resurrection of Godzilla

Artist's interpretation of concept art based on the second draft of The Resurrection of Godzilla

The first version of Bagan, at the time known as "Bakan" in the original draft of The Resurrection of Godzilla, was a shape-shifter that would face off against Godzilla.

In the second draft, Bakan runs into Godzilla, but finding that it can't defeat him in any single form, it makes a towering, combined form. But after this, it can no longer change shape, meaning it can no longer heal itself, allowing Godzilla to defeat it.

As more and more revisions to the script were being made, Bakan and various other elements would be removed, and the film would be reworked into what ultimately became The Return of Godzilla.

Mothra vs. Bagan

Bagan in Godzilla Movie Studio Tour

In Mothra vs. Bagan, Bagan (renamed from his original version) is an ancient dragon that once protected the country of China around 2,000 years ago. When he started threatening the forests that he called home, the Chinese retaliated and defeated him. He was frozen in the Himalayas shortly after. But now, due to global warming 2,000 years later, the monster breaks free. He sees the damage humans have done to the land and begins to attack them, trying to erase them off the Earth. Instantaneously, the ancient goddess of peace Mothra intervenes. The fight between the two monsters takes them to Singapore, where the goddess is unable to stop him. Meanwhile, Mothra's egg in Borneo hatches and the larva arrives to help its parent. The two Mothras fight the creature in downtown Bangkok. Despite her attempt to halt the living god's wave of destruction, the adult Mothra is killed by Bagan, who moves on. The larva cocoons itself on a remote island and becomes a fully transformed Imago Mothra. The newly transformed Mothra arrives in Dhaka, Bangladesh where she battles and finally defeats Bagan.

Unfortunately, after Godzilla vs. Biollante did not perform as well at the box office as Toho had hoped, they decided not to risk making another movie with another new monster, and so Mothra vs. Bagan was cancelled.

Abilities

The only known powers for the version of Bagan in The Resurrection of Godzilla, are shape-shifting and the ability to heal himself.

In the storyboards for Mothra vs. Bagan, Bagan is shown to be blowing a hole in one of Mothra's wings with an energy beam from his mouth. He is also shown to be firing some sort of lightning bolt from his main nasal horn, and growing what seems to be some type of energy wings out of his back.

The version of Bagan that appeared in Super Godzilla possessed very high physical strength and durability. He could slash with his powerful Slasher Claw attack, perform a Diamond Storm in which he would shoot white, star-like objects from his horns, fire a white Plasma Beam from his mouth and generate a Force Field to block incoming attacks. Bagan's attacks were the strongest used by any enemy in the game. Additionally, he had the most health out of any enemy in the game and normal Godzilla's attacks would only cause a very small amount of damage, making it necessary to transform into Super Godzilla to defeat Bagan and complete the game.

Video games

Super Godzilla

Bagan received a starring role as the final boss in the video game Super Godzilla. Supercharged by cells from Godzilla and King Ghidorah that his alien commanders had spliced into him, Bagan is easily the most powerful foe in the game, generally seen as impossible to defeat as normal Godzilla, and still seen as a difficult opponent as Super Godzilla.

Trivia

  • Bagan is one of only two known monsters to be more physically massive and heavier than the final form of Biollante, who weighs in at a lesser 200,000 tons.
  • Kilazee bears a remarkable resemblance to Bagan's initial design. It is unknown if this is more than just a coincidence.
  • Bagan was mentioned by Simon Strange in an interview for Godzilla: Unleashed. He was one of several monsters considered for the game, but was dropped in favor of more obscure monsters, with Varan being explicitly stated.[citation needed]
  • Bagan, along with Godzilla, was planned to make appearances in the sequels of Yamato Takeru.[citation needed]

List of appearances

Films

Video games

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Bagan information
Film-based kaiju
Godzilla kaiju
King Kong kaiju
Mothra kaiju
Gamera kaiju
Other kaiju
Scrapped kaiju
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