Human Instrumentality Podcast listeners are probably familiar with Godzilla, King of the Monsters, the massive atomic dinosaur that remains Japan’s foremost Kaiju (giant monster) ambassador to the rest of the world. They may be less familiar with his lesser-known commercial rival, a flying, fire-breathing turtle (seriously) named Gamera, who once upon a time had a little cameo on Mad Men.
Gamera sounds silly on paper, but the titanic terrapin’s trilogy of 90’s films might be the best giant monster movies ever made, thanks in large part to staff members from Neon Genesis Evangelion and Ghost in the Shell. Know this: there is no Shin Godzilla without 1995’s Gamera: Guardian of the Universe.
Joseph takes Ian on a tour through Gamera’s truly bizarre history before both hosts begin their survey of his Heisei trilogy. Along the way, they discuss under-appreciated horror auteur turned wunderkind director Shusuke Kaneko, who mined the vein of 90s anime-cool to give the goofiest monster you could imagine both serious edge, and still-biting environmentalist themes.