Monster movies are enjoying a bit of a renaissance on the big screen as of late. With films such as 2014’s Godzilla and Pacific Rim, they are popping up more so than they have before, now with the benefit of greater technology. Kong: Skull Island is the most recent example of these type of monster movies, but this one is set in a burgeoning MonsterVerse that includes Godzilla and other kaiju. The film itself is a fun ride, which you can read about in our review of the film. The continued trend of big budget monster movies will be seen for several years to come and the if the post-credits scene in Kong is any indication of what is to come, then we have a whole lot of monster madness to look forward to.
The scene simultaneously wraps up the characters’ story and introduces a shared universe structure. It hints at so much to come for the future of this series. So for those that don’t remember all the details, here is a brief summary before we explore its significance.
After surviving the events of the film, James Conrad (Tom Hiddleston) and Mason Weaver (Brie Larson) end up in an isolated interrogation room questioning why they are there. They try to bargain and promise not to tell the Russians. Before they can’t take it any longer, Houston Brooks (Corey Hawkins) and San (Tian Jing) enter the room to inform them they are with Monarch, the S.H.I.E.L.D.-esque secret group of the MonsterVerse designed to study and look for earth’s giant monsters. Brooks tells them there are more before showing a slideshow with cave drawings of Rodan, Mothra, King Ghidorah, and, of course, Godzilla. It fades to black and infamous roar from Godzilla himself can be heard.
This scene is a huge revelation in that it is direct confirmation of the plans for the Godzilla vs. Kong movie that has been known to be in the works. Since 2014’s Godzilla shares the same universe, it makes sense that Godzilla would only be presented in cave drawings as a legend of sorts, seeing as Kong is set in 1973 and the events of Godzilla happen in then-present day 2014. Getting a chance to see him and acknowledge the existence of Godzilla in Kong is a great sign that prepares the audience for the fact that it is a shared universe. This is even more abundantly clear with the use of 2014’s Godzilla roar.
While they have stated that there is a shared universe, it was never made apparently clear from the marketing of either film. The inclusion of the infamous Japanese king of monsters in this post-credits scene hopefully sparks even more interest in these type of giant monster movies.
One of the other most crucial things about this scene is that it not only confirmed the existence of Godzilla in this universe, but also showed that the other famous Toho monsters exist as well, ones American audiences are largely unfamiliar with. When the scene started I expected it to tie in to Godzilla, but seeing the other monsters such as Mothra, Rodan, and King Ghidorah showed signs that they’ll be included in the appropriately-titled 2019 sequel Godzilla: King of the Monsters, and perhaps 2020’s Godzilla vs. Kong too.
Mothra first appeared in the 1961 film of the same title and is a giant monstrous moth. Rodan can also fly, but his appearance is more of a dragon or pterodactyl. King Ghidorah is arguably the most famous Godzilla foe for the fact that he has three heads and is a giant dragon. His name and presentation in the post-credits scene indicates he may hold Big Bad status among these new beasties. Each of these characters have battled with Godzilla beforehand and they have the potential to go toe-to-toe with him again in a new film. These creatures have been well known among fans for several years and the potential to see them realized in a different way from a Hollywood perspective is really interesting and exciting.
There is an immense amount of potential here. This small scene can be extrapolated to expand this universe into a much more varied world and right now there’s no telling how far it can be taken. If the next couple of films are a success, they could easily make more films centering around Kong and Godzilla separately or introduce some more iconic monsters into the fray to have their own films or to star alongside these two titans. This seemingly simple post-credits scene is crucial to the future of these films in that it sets up the universe in a way similar to that of Marvel’s introduction of Nick Fury back in the first Iron Man film.
These films will be unique in that not many studios are tackling monster films, especially ones that combine classic monsters together. If they are a big hits (Kong topped its opening weekend, but there are tough weekends ahead) there is a potential that other studios will also try their hands at this genre to give audiences even more, varied giant monster movies like Colossal and Okja. While it is always possible that these films won’t be successful, the potential is there, if handled with care. The post-credits scene was a smart way to maintain continued interest in the series and another way Marvel’s cinematic universe style has influenced Hollywood blockbuster filmmaking.
Kong: Skull Island was a fun adventure, but this scene is where the folks at Legendary have put their creative stakes in building a franchise. The nascent MonsterVerses seeks to compete with DC, Marvel, and even Universal’s own Monsters Universe that is planned. The Godzilla-Kong universe is another blatant example of this trend. Now other studios are catching on to apply said methods for their own crowd-pleasing action films. The future of Kong and Godzilla beyond 2020’s Godzilla vs. Kong is uncertain, but the potential is there for years of more films, and if they plan to build upon what they have, there is a good reason to be excited going forward.
So are you excited about the future of the Kong/Godzilla Universe? Let us know in the comments!