The original English name given to Anguirus by Toho was "Angilas", given the pronunciation of the name in Japan, which was changed to Anguirus in the 1959 American release of Godzilla Raids Again, with the film's title being changed to Gigantis, the Fire Monster. In the mid-1990s, Toho copyrighted the revised name "Anguirus," making it official.
Anguirus is a four-legged dinosaur that looks similar to an ankylosaurus. He has several horns at the top of his head and a a single horn above his nose like a rhinoceros. His face is long and drawn out, like a crocodile, and has rows of jagged, serrated teeth. His carapace is studded with long, sharp spikes. Anguirus' tail is longer than his body and makes up most of his body length, and is covered with spikes. His hind limbs are longer than his forelimbs, enabling him to stand up on them to his full height, but he generally walks upon all fours.
HistoryGodzilla Raids Again, by Godzilla on a remote island, where they fought. Godzilla managed to defeat Anguirus, and he swam away to Japan. The two kaiju met each other again in Japan, where they fought. Godzilla killed Anguirus, and he returned to the sea.
Destroy All Monsters, Anguirus was now living on Monsterland along with the other Earth monsters in the year 1999. The Earth was invaded by the Kilaaks, however, and he was sent to guard the aliens' earth base. The humans intervened, and freed the monsters from the alien mind control. Anguirus battled King Ghidorah once again, and managed to kill him with the other monsters.
Godzilla Raids Again, in Godzilla vs. Gigan, a new Anguirus arrived, this time to save Japan. Godzilla and Anguirus were now living on Monster Island, and Godzilla sent him to Japan to check on a strange noise they were hearing. Anguirus swam to the shores of Japan, where he was attacked by the military. The military managed to drive him off, but he returned to Monster Island to inform Godzilla. Godzilla returned with him to Japan, where they fought Gigan and King Ghidorah at the World Children's land. They defeated the enemy monsters, but were very badly injured in the process.
Anguirus appeared briefly in Godzilla vs. Megalon, where he was seen on Monster Island with Godzilla and Rodan. The trio of monsters are resting on Monster Island when nuclear tests are carried out nearby, causing the island to split in half. Godzilla manages to escape, but Anguirus topples over onto Rodan, and they both fall into the growing fissure.Godzilla vs. MechaGodzilla, Anguirus, having been resting underground ever since he fell into the fissure a year previously, went to Japan to check on Godzilla. He noticed that something was not right, and Godzilla attacked him. Anguirus managed to scrape off some of Godzilla's skin, revealing a metallic shine underneath. The now-revealed Fake Godzilla attacked Anguirus brutally, throwing the monster around, then broke Anguirus' jaw, and he dug underground to heal.
2004, Anguirus was under the control of the Xiliens and was sent to attack Shanghai. He was attacked by the Karyu, but he proved too fast for it. He continued to fight against the humans, but he was recalled by the Xiliens. After the trust was broken between humanity and the aliens, Anguirus was set lose on Shanghai once again. He battled the Karyu and destroyed it when he curled into a ball and slammed into it. Once Godzilla was awoken again, Anguirus, Rodan, and King Caesar were sent to stop him. Anguirus fought most of the battle while curled up, allowing him to be kicked into Godzilla by King Caesar. Godzilla defeated them all, leaving them unconscious.
Anguirus does not have any "special" abilities in particular, so he uses his teeth, claws, horns, and spiked carapace as his weapons, contributing to his appeal among fans of more "natural"-seeming monsters. He has been known to hurl himself backwards at a foe, ramming them with his spiny carapace (Godzilla vs. Gigan). He is also capable of burrowing substantial distances (Godzilla vs. MechaGodzilla). Recently, the Anguirus that appeared in Godzilla: Final Wars has shown the ability to curl himself into a ball and propel himself at tremendous speed.
Anguirus possess astounding stamina and determination, able to keep fighting after absorbing vicious assaults that would force other monsters into retreat. Despite repeatedly facing more powerful opponents than himself, most notably Godzilla, King Ghidorah, and MechaGodzilla, he has never retreated from a fight without first taking substantial punishment. The finest example of Anguirus' persistence was his attack on King Ghidorah in Destroy All Monsters, in which he pierced the dragon's right-most neck with his jaws and held firm on even as his foe took to the air, letting go only when King Ghidorah bit Anguirus' own neck. The same scene occurred as stock footage in Godzilla vs Gigan. Despite suffering the great fall, Anguirus resumed his attack once the space dragon was grounded, showing no discernible fatigue. A similar incident occurred in Godzilla vs. Megalon, in which Rodan and Anguirus fall into a fissure in the ground, with Anguirus managing to survive the fall and presumably remain hidden from human detection until he was shown encountering Fake Godzilla.
Despite his tenacity, Anguirus has never won a fight without the assistance of Godzilla. By the 1970s, his appearances were utilized to demonstrate how powerful the then new opponent was, highlighting the threat. This is especially pronounced in Godzilla vs. Gigan, in which Anguirus bravely but ineffectively attacked both Gigan and King Ghidorah during the "tag-team" final battle, requiring Godzilla's aid to finish off both foes. The primary reason for this occurrence is that Anguirus was chosen by the film's producers to act as a stand-in for other monsters whose suits were well beyond repair at the time, particularly Baragon. Anguirus would fill in for for his fellow quadruped again in Godzilla vs. MechaGodzilla, where he showcased Baragon's burrowing abilities despite the lack of precedent in his earlier appearances.
In the video games Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee and Godzilla: Save the Earth, Anguirus is finally given a "sonic roar", a roar which is loud enough to hurt monsters and destroy military weapons. It can also destroy, and even pass right through, buildings and rocks. In the former game, Anguirus' rage attack involves him charging his spikes with some undefined energy, then jumping far up into the air, shooting them off while performing multiple flips. In the latter, it is simply a variant of his "rolling" attack used in the first game as well as Godzilla: Final Wars.
It appears that, according to a 1955 Japanese manga adaptation of Godzilla Raids Again, which was contemporary with the film, Anguirus may have been originally conceived as a fire-breather as he his depicted several times breathing some sort of flame. Also, the way Anguirus' shell flops around in Godzilla Raids Again, partially split in two and loose from his back, is depicted in the artwork as well, leading to the belief that this may have been intentional, rather than a costume design flaw. When the second Anguirus appeared in Destroy All Monsters, these traits were not present nor alluded to.
"Anguirus is a loyal Earth Defender. Although he is neither the largest, strongest, or fastest of Earth's vanguard, he possesses a tenacity of spirit that makes him a fearsome opponent for any monster. Anguirus can stun nearby opponents with his fearsome Sonic Roar, or use his powerful jaws to leave an impression. Anguirus' most unique attribute is his ultra-hard spiked carapace, which can parry any physical attack and inflict heavy edged damage in response. Anguirus can tuck his head and limbs beneath his shell and roll forward-this offers him excellent resistance to attack and allows him to plow through terrain and opponents alike. When the earth is threatened, Godzilla will come to its defense-and Anguirus will be right beside him, until the end."
Anguirus appears in Godzilla: Legends issue #1. As a city is attacked by Destoroyah, a scientist named Dr. Anders uses an experimental device to try and call Godzilla to the city to fight. While the device works, it calls Anguirus instead. Anguirus attacks Destoroyah, even though Destoroyah is much larger and stronger. Even with Anguirus' perseverance, and Dr. Anders' second attempt at using the G-signaler, Destoroyah is too powerful for them to do any lasting damage. He almost kills Anguirus until Col. Matsumiya uses a helicopter to send a huge tank of freon to smash into Destoroyah. Anguirus then rolls into a ball and slams into the partially frozen Destoroyah, defeating it and scoring his first victory over another kaiju. Afterwards, Godzilla arrives and it seems that Anguirus and he will face off, but Godzilla displays respect towards Anguirus, at least knowing there's a bigger threat to go after.
In Godzilla: Rulers of Earth, Anguirus is considered a land monster that was frozen in an ice cap until he was reawakened along with all the other Earth monsters.
In Rulers of Earth 14, Anguirus is ambushed by a MechaGodzilla that was built by the Cryog leader disguised as a Russian warmonger. The mecha badly wounds Anguirus and nearly snaps his jaw. Eventually, MechaGodzilla blasts Anguirus with several weapons and leaves him for dead. When Lucy Casprell and her team arrive, they discover that Anguirus is still alive and send Kiryu to retrieve him and bring to the Monster Islands. Kiryu is suddenly given new orders to bring Anguirus to a Russian facility, and flies off with the downed saurian.
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