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Through the Lens: ‘Godzilla’

Renee Bright

Godzilla — the King of the Monsters — has starred in 37 feature films. But the very first one, released in 1954, stands above them all. 

Our guest is the scholar and historian William Tsutsui. He’s just about as expert as it gets when it comes to Godzilla — the man literally wanted to be Godzilla when he was a kid. And while later entries in the franchise made Godzilla a hero, in the very first film, the radioactive monster is a terrifying force of utter destruction. As Tsutsui put it, that first Godzilla was the embodiment of the Japanese people coping with the trauma of the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki only nine years earlier. This Friday at noon, we’re talking about the impact and legacy of 1954’s “Godzilla.”

Please join KUER and the Utah Film Center for a free screening of “Godzilla” at the Salt Lake City Public Library on Wednesday, Nov. 9, at 7 p.m. Registration is at Utahfilmcenter.org.


William Tsutsui, Chancellor and Professor of History at Ottawa University. He’s the author of the book “Godzilla on My Mind: Fifty Years of the King of Monsters.” [Amazon|Indiebound|Bookshop]

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