Hedorah was named for hedoro, the Japanese word for sludge, vomit, slime or chemical ooze.
In its first form, it resembled a tadpole. In its second form, it resembled a quadrupedal reptile. Its third form was like a flying saucer, and its final form took on a humanoid shape.
Hedorah was an alien life form from the Dark gas nebula in the Orion Constellation that landed on Earth and began feeding on pollution. Hedorah's actions soon gained the attention of Godzilla, who attacked the Smog Monster as he was feeding off of a smokestack. At the time, Hedorah was still in a young form, and was easily trounced by Godzilla. The two creatures had a series of battles across Japan, and Hedorah continued to grow bigger and stronger, and achieved a flying saucer-like form, allowing him to fly and spread sulfuric acid mist across Japan while destroying many factories. Hedorah and Godzilla had a final showdown near Mt. Fuji, in which Hedorah achieved his final form, a humanoid, walking pile of sludge. Thanks to his acidic, poisonous body, as well as his lethal eye bolts, Hedorah very nearly put an end to Godzilla in their struggle. However, mankind had built a pair of gigantic electrodes near the warring monster. Their plan was that, since Hedorah was merely sludge, they would use the electrodes to dry him out. During a period of the fight where Godzilla was knocked out, Hedorah was lured between the electrodes. Unfortunately, a fuse was blown, and the electrodes were useless.
Thankfully, Godzilla quickly came to the rescue again, using his ray to re-energize the electrodes. Badly dehydrated by their electricity, Hedorah tried to escape, but thanks to Godzilla's newfound power of flight, (by breathing highly-pressurized, ordinary radiation breath continuously at the ground) was returned to the electrodes and was dried out completely. Sensing that there was still wet sludge within Hedorah's dried out husk, Godzilla proceeded to rip out Hedorah's innards, then used the electrodes to fry them. Godzilla had finally slain the hellacious Smog Monster, but not without a price - he had lost one of his eyes, and his right hand was burnt down to the bone. At the end of the movie, a picture of another Hedorah is seen in some water, with the caption 'And yet another one?', but no sequel to the film was produced.
The Hedorahs in Godzilla vs. Hedorah killed thousands of people. Hedorah killed some of the oil tankers' crewmates, most of the swimmers and fish in the sea, about 40 people on the first time he went on land, 1600 people when it was first flying, an unknown number when he was flying to Mt Fuji and about 80 of the people who were partying on Mt. Fuji. Also, over 3,000,000 people were affected by Hedorah's smog. Strangely enough, it is not shown in the Millenium series whether Hedorah kills any people at all.Godzilla Island.
Godzilla: Final Wars. Hedorah, along with Ebirah, is seen being blasted out of Tokyo Harbor by Godzilla and crashing into a building, with Ebirah's claw piercing Hedorah's eyes. The two are then destroyed by a blast of Godzilla's atomic ray. It is unknown if Hedorah had been involved in the Xilians invasion, or if he was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. During the end credits a few deleted scenes were shown, one of which was Hedorah using his sulfuric acid mist emitted from his tube.
Director Banno has stated that there was going to be a sequel to Godzilla vs. Hedorah but the producer of the movie hated the idea so much that he said never to do it. After the producer's death the director of Godzilla vs. Hedorah decided to make Godzilla 3D to the MAX. So it is possible that the 40 minute film would have been a sort of "disguised" version of Godzilla vs. Hedorah 2. This film as been dropped in favor of the Godzilla film by Legendary Pictures.
Hedorah is one of the strongest opponents Godzilla faced in the Showa series (though Godzilla easily defeated Hedorah in Final Wars, which means that either the Millenium Hedorah is much weaker than the Showa, or that the Final Wars Godzilla is far more powerful than the Showa one). Hedorah possessed many special abilities. Hedorah's primary form of attack was by squirting chunks of its own acidic body at its opponent, as well as a red laser beam from its eye. In its saucer form, it was also able to fly, and spread a mist of sulfuric acid as it went along, and in its final form it could revert back to its flying form at will. It could also trap enemies by throwing them down and spewing mud on them. Hedorah can reproduce asexually, can combine with and separate from other species, and does not need oxygen to survive.
Hedorah has strong defenses, as it was completely immune to Godzilla's atomic breath even in its comparatively weak second stage, and conventional weapons would merely pass straight through its disgusting body. Tearing into Hedorah's body proved to be ineffective as well, and it resulted in the flesh on Godzilla's paw dissolving all the way down to the bone. Only his eyes are known to be affected by his own liquid sludge. In the ending credits of Godzilla: Final Wars, Hedorah is shown spraying sulfuric acid mist from tubes on his body, while stomping through city ruins. In Godzilla: Final Wars, Hedorah was given a whip-like arm, which he may or may not use in battle.
Similarities to Other Monsters
Deathla was to be featured in Godzilla 3D to the MAX. While it was described as looking like Hedorah, though red, it feeds on chlorophyll - not smog, - and can split up into a swarm of locusts and reassemble at will. With the cancellation of the movie, it would seem Deathla is no longer part of canon.
Hedorah is the first monster who couldn't be damaged directly by Godzilla and required the help of the military; the only other creature to require such aid was Destoroyah. The two creatures both had a weakness to something that Godzilla does not possess, Hedorah needing to be dehydrated and Destoroyah needing to be damaged while at low temperatures. Both also have a flying form, a land form, an aquatic form, and a final form that require certain prerequisites to evolve, with Destoroyah needing to be made up of more of its base life forms and Hedorah requiring more pollution.
- Monster's Fair
- Godzilla (Gameboy)
- Godzilla: Battle Legends
- Godzilla Trading Battle
- Godzilla: Monster of Monsters
- Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee
- Godzilla: Save the Earth and Godzilla: Unleashed (Scrapped)
Hedorah also makes an appearance in Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee, where it randomly appears in disc form and slows the energy recovery. It can be killed, though this is difficult. When it is killed, it turns into a puff of smoke which dies away.
Hedorah was stated to appear in both of the Godzilla: Destroy All Monsters Melee sequels but for Godzilla: Save the Earth, the game's engine couldn't develop a skeleton for Hedorah since it is a gelatinous blob, and for Godzilla: Unleashed, the skeleton was created but the cel-shading was a long and complicated process so they decided to scrap him. Since Battra's appearance in Godzilla: Unleashed PS2, Hedorah has become the most wanted playable character for a video game (although he was playable in Godzilla Trading Battle).
In Other Languages
- German: Hydrox
- Hedorah's laser features a sound effect that is actually King Ghidorah's flying sound at a higher pitch.
- According to the German release of Godzilla vs The Smog Monster, Hedorah was possibly created by Dr. Frankenstein.
- In Godzilla: Final Wars, Hedorah's tail resembles King Crab from Ultraman Ace.
- In the Showa series, Hedorah was the second space monster to fight Godzilla.
- Hedorah was the last new monster in the Showa era to completely act on its own independence, as the rest were controlled by aliens.