Godzilla on My Mind: Fifty Years of the King of Monsters / Edition 1

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This year, to mark the fiftieth anniversary of his first appearance on the screen, the original, uncut version of Godzilla was released in American theaters to the delight of Sci-Fi and B-Movie fans everywhere. Ever since Godzilla (or, Gojira, as he is known in Japan) crawled out of his radioactive birthplace to cut a swath of destruction through Tokyo, he has claimed a place alongside King Kong and others in the movie monster pantheon. He is the third most recognizable Japanese celebrity in the United States, and his fan base continues to grow as children today prove his enduring appeal. Now, Bill Tsutsui, a life-long fan and historian, takes a light-hearted look at the big, green, radioactive lizard, revealing how he was born and how he became a megastar. With humorous anecdotes, Godzilla on My Mind explores his lasting cultural impact on the world. This book is sure to be welcomed by pop culture enthusiasts, fans, and historians alike.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Winner of the 2005 William Rockhill Nelson Award for Non-Fiction. This honor is granted by The Writers Place and The Kansas City Star, and commends the best book by a Kansas or Missouri author published in 2004.
"Godzilla On My Mind is a good read, well written, occasionally provocative and full of facts that show it to be well researched as well as a labour of love." -Dr. Dolores Martinez, the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), and author of The Worlds of Japanese Popular Culture

"Bill Tsutsui blends impeccable scholarship with witty writing and an eye for fascinating detail as he follows the romping, stomping path of Godzilla across global popular culture: from Japanese film making in the 1950s, to rap lyrics in the present day; from issues of nuclear disarmament to the character of science fiction fandom; from wind-up toys to advertisements for Nike, Taco Bell, and Dr. Pepper. Inspired by his life-long affection -- passion? mania? -- for the monster, Tsutsui has written a stellar book; an entertaining and vivid look at Japanese pop culture, its globalization, and American encounters with Japan."
--Ted Bestor, Harvard University and author of Tsukiji: The Fish Market at the Center of the World

"William Tsutsui's Godzilla takes a fresh, original, and appealing look at one of our more intriguing pop culture icons. Although informed by careful scholarship, the book is highly accessible. It's funny, stimulating, and an overall pleasure to read. I'll never look at Godzilla the same way again!
--Susan Napier, author of Anime from Akira To Princess Mononoke: Experiencing Contemporary Japanese Animation

Library Journal
When Godzilla first destroyed Tokyo in 1954, no one could fathom that 50 years and 28 movies later, a radioactive lizard would be an international superstar. What made the rampaging Godzilla King of the Monsters? That is the question Tsutsui (history, Univ. of Kansas) attempts to answer in this original look at a movie icon. Drawing on personal anecdotes, fan conventions, and atomic-age mentalities, Tsutsui blends together elements that turned Godzilla from fearsome monster into protector of Japan. Tsutsui explains that the original movie was inspired by Hiroshima's aftermath and provides thoughtful insight into how both Japanese and American culture affected Godzilla's image. Included is a short analysis of many Godzilla films, technical trivia, plus intriguing facts about the King of the Monsters. This is an excellent (and reasonably priced) book for hard-core fans or students doing research on culture in films, but it may not appeal to general readers. Recommended for libraries with strong film studies. [See LJ 9/15/04 for an interview with Tsutsui. Ed.] Rosalind Dayen, South Regional Lib., Broward Cty., FL Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781403964748
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 10/15/2004
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 697,636
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.45 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

William Tsutsui is an Associate Professor of history at the University of Kansas.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Godzilla, Mon Amour
• The Birth of Gojira
• The Godzilla Franchise
• Understanding the Monster
• The Making of An American Icon
• A Personal Godzilla
• Godzilla's Spawn
• Godzilla Forever

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 9, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Recommended for any fan of the King of the Monsters!

    This is a quick, intelligent and very enjoyable read for anyone that considers themselves a Godzilla fan.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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