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The MonsterVerse takes place in an alternate Earth timeline inhabited by "massive unidentified terrestrial organisms" (MUTOs), giant monsters of various shapes, sizes, and forms. Each of the films center around Monarch, a cryptozoological organization dedicated to studying the creatures, and their recurring encounters with the beasts.
According to an in-universe backstory supplied in comic book tie-ins, Monarch was first founded in 1946 to investigate the appearance of MUTOs (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism). In 1954, Monarch, in cooperation with the U.S. military, lured Shinomura and Godzilla to Bikini Atoll, where they attempt to kill them using the Castle Bravo atomic bomb. The attempt fails as only Shimomura is killed and Godzilla goes dormant.
In 1973, just after the Vietnam War, Monarch heads an expedition to the mysterious Skull Island, an uncharted landmass inhabited by many large creatures that have drastically evolved outside of mankind's influence. Among the creatures living there is Kong, a large humanoid ape. Most of the Monarch team perishes during the expedition, and the remaining survivors assist Kong in warding off several attacks by Skullcrawlers, a species of reptilian super-predators and Kong's primary adversaries in maintaining the island's natural order.
In 1995, Aaron Brooks, the son of two survivors of the Skull Island expedition, leads a team of five on a secret mission to the island to see whether or not Kong is still alive and keeping control over the creatures there. Once the team is stranded, they encounter new MUTOs including the Death Jackals, Sirenjaw, and Swamp Locust. Led by members of the native Iwi tribe, the team learns about Kong's origins and how he became the last of his kind. After a year, Aaron meets Kong and ends up being the mission's sole survivor. He sends his recordings about the mission out to sea in a Monarch kevlar bag, which is found in 2012 and obtained by his father who learns of his son's fate.
Godzilla resurfaces in 2014 after Monarch unwittingly awakens a pair of parasitic, insectoid MUTOs. He pursues the creatures to San Francisco, where he slays them while military forces obliterate a nest where the MUTOs had been breeding. The incident exposes the existence of giant monsters to the world, and Godzilla returns to the ocean. A few months later, Godzilla returns and defeats MUTO Prime before heading back out to sea. For the next few years, Monarch begins making more proactive attempts to seek out other MUTOs to prevent another catastrophe like the one in San Francisco from happening again. In their efforts, the organization discovers the Titans, a pack of monsters comprising of Godzilla, Mothra, Rodan, Ghidorah, Behemoth, Methuselah, Mokele-Mbembe, Scylla, Abaddon, Bunyip, Baphomet, Leviathan, Kraken, Tiamat, Sekhmet, Yamata No Orochi, Typhon, Quetzalcoatl, and Amhuluk.
Five years after the battle in San Francisco, a cadre of eco-terrorists led by the anarchist Alan Jonah unleashes Ghidorah and Rodan with the ORCA, the bioacoustics invention of Dr. Emma Russel to control them and create worldwide terror. Ghidorah, who is considered a rival Alpha to Godzilla due to his immense strength and power, triggers the awakening of the other Titans around the world, threatening unfathomable levels of destruction and the possible extinction of mankind. To stop this, Dr. Russell's daughter Madison uses the ORCA to lure Ghidorah into a fight with Godzilla in Boston. With help from Mothra, Godzilla destroys Ghidorah and subsequently becomes the Alpha to the other Titans.
Godzilla film series
King Kong film series
Godzilla film series
- Giant Spider
- Yamata no Orochi
King Kong film series
- Mire Squid
- Mother Longlegs
- Sker Buffalo
- Spore Mantis
- Giant ants
- Prehistoric deer
- The MonsterVerse is the first series of live-action Godzilla films since the Heisei era in which all of the films take place in a single related continuity.
- All of the films in the MonsterVerse are set to be distributed by Warner Bros. (except in Japan), despite Legendary's current distribution partner being Universal Pictures. This is because Toho's deal with Legendary to grant them the Godzilla license was made exclusively with it and Warner Bros.
- This is the first American-produced Godzilla continuity that features other trademarked Toho monsters other than Godzilla himself, with Mothra, King Ghidorah, and Rodan appearing in Godzilla: King of the Monsters.
- The MonsterVerse is the first series in which Godzilla does not deliberately cause destruction in the first film. While Godzilla was portrayed as a protagonist monster in the first film of the Millennium series, Godzilla 2000: Millennium, he was still depicted causing destruction and attacking humans, while the Godzilla in Legendary Pictures' Godzilla is never seen intentionally causing destruction or threatening human characters, though he does cause some destruction as a byproduct of his size and battles.
- The MonsterVerse will be the first series to feature a meeting between Godzilla and King Kong since the Showa era film, King Kong vs. Godzilla.
- The "M"-shaped logo used for the MonsterVerse looks nearly identical to the Monarch logo.
- Both Godzilla films interestingly share the theme of Godzilla rising to face opposing Titans that threaten the planet and assert his dominance with a fractured family being caught in the middle of the chaos trying to survive and reunite.
- This is the first in a long time that new monsters appeared on screen since the MUTO, the Skull Island flora/fauna, and the Skullcrawlers.
- In the audio commentary for King of the Monsters, Michael Dougherty reveals that he and Godzilla director Gareth Edwards are both fans of the 1975 film Jaws, which is why Edwards gave the protagonist family the surname "Brody" after the Brody family, and Dougherty named his film's MacGuffin device after Quint's boat.
|Eras and series of the Godzilla franchise|