***TWISTED KAIJU THEATER interview. www.neomonsterisland.com
Prologue: Godzilla first stomped onto Japanese movie theater screens & into out hearts on November 3rd 1954. After almost 30 movies, alot of facelifts, & thousands of toys Godzilla lives on in the worlds collective mind & pop culture. Godzilla inspired a Kaiju genre of entertainment for the masses tinged with the symbolic crisis of nuclear war. Godzilla is chock full of well packaged unironic political messages (yet its still kid friendly). Without being too preachy these movies have managed to chronicle the evolution of world nuclear identities for over 50 years while still maintaining a healthy amount of horror, kitsch, & fun. That is pretty good for a bunch of guys in rubber suits & fog machines. Oop they use computers now?! Oop that's a girl inside the Mothra suit?!...
As times & technologies change the fans remain militant ever vigilant in communicating their love of all things kaiju.
Kaiju Big Battel, Neo Kaiju, Kaiju Kidz, Kaijuice, & Twisted Kaiju Theater celebrate their kaiju inspiration while projecting, extending, & the refreshing the genre for today. So until the next Bandai kaiju is issued & "Godzilla 3- D to the max "set to be released on September 12, 2007 comes out we suggest you check out some Twisted Kaiju Theater!!!
TWISTED KAIJU THEATER!!!
What is Twisted Kaiju Theater? asks the born yesterday Godzilla fan internet surfer?
Since August 11th 2000 Sean (Shin-Goji) McGuiness & Howard (Space-Hojo) Williams have been offering their fans a unique comic strip of digital jokes, plots, & commentary to digest contemplate & enjoy. TKT has a wide cast of Kaiju toys who act out the latest insights of their authors on Neo-monster Island. Is TKT for the masses, or the elite niche few who are in on the fun? Lets find out!
Enjoy a quick chat with Sean the brains behind the beauty that is TWISTED KAIJU THEATER!
Q. What ever made you decide to make the online TKT Webcomic?
A. TKT started as Neo-Monster Island, which was just my site to show off my Godzilla collection. I had no real direction or clue as to where I was going, but I was soaking in a sea of freshly Ebay'd Godzilla goodness and needed a creative outlet. I dont even remember what gave me the idea to do a Godzilla-toy-based webcomic. I just remember my first comic was created because I saw a Trendmasters Space Godzilla could be posed in such a way as if to show he didnt want to see what he just saw. I had a buttload [thats an arseload in metric] of these little candies that came with the Godzilla figures, and I always had Beavis [from Beavis & Butthead] on the brain whenever I would think about what Ghidorahs voice would sound like. There I am, in my second apartment, on my moms table with a foam core backboard and about as much sense with a digital camera as a hill of beans. One hour later TKTs "Lemonsours" is born and a running gag keeps me from having to be too creative when I run into a dryspell.
Q. How big is your TKT toy collection?
A. My collection is nowhere near as big or valuable as it use to be, but it spans almost five hundred figures [most of which are tiny super deformed figures]. Its really hard to nail down which is my favorite. My favorite suit is from Godzilla vs MechaGodzilla , so the Bandai Monster Island Godzilla would be a contender. But I would have to say the Shogun Warrior Godzilla with the launching fist really takes me back to my childhood.
Q. Kaiju Girls are super cute & hot! I want to meet one or collect all Kaiju Girl fully articulated figures!
A. I wanted a "poster girl" to draw fans to the site, which was pretty much a sausage fest. You need cute girl in a comic to get the fanboys in. I commissioned an artist from a convention to create an anthropomorphic female based on the Godzilla 2000 suit. Months later I had the first Playboy GINA sketch. Years later, there are almost 50 different kaiju girls who have captured the imaginations of artists and fans alike. I can proudly say that I am the first person to envision the Kaiju Girls. I cant draw worth a damn, so I pay people to turn my ideas into paper or digital form. There are other sites who have their own variations, but most of them are just drawings of girls in costumes. Mine are the living, breathing, feminine spirits of 50 years of urban renewal monsters. As far as meeting one at a con, I dont know whos willing to walk around naked covered in spray paint and spirit gum. The girls have gotten me a lot of fame and adoration, but the H8 THA FURRY crowds really see it as a detriment to the site. But thats ok, Im not doing the site for them. You dont invite Jesse Helms to a Black Pride march and you don't cater to the Furry H8ers.
Q. What are your thoughts on Kaiju Big Battel, Twisted Toyfare Theater, & Robot Chicken?
A. YES, I HAVE heard of Kaiju Big Battel. No, Im not them. No, I dont watch them. I have nothing against KBB, its just not my thing.
Im totally jealous of TTT. They were my inspiration, now that I think about it. Ive been mentioned in their magazine twice. They even did a Godzilla comic that had me gamma green with envy. Godzilla is a pretty esoteric genre for being world renowned. So while I would love to do what I do for a living, Ill be content to do it as a hobby.
Robot Chicken is produced by the TTT alumni, and theyve done some pretty great kaiju related skits. I wish I could spend a day shooting some cartoons using their props and backdrops.
Q. Name your all time favorite Godzilla or kaiju movie?
A. All time favorite movie, gotta pick Godzilla vs MechaGodzilla 1974 and Godzilla FINAL WARS. Both really capture the spirit of what Godzilla is all about. Don't Worry, Be Stompy. Knock down, drag out, city decimating ack-shun!
Q. What do your diehard fans & critics have to say about you & TKT?
A. I have both. I have diehard fans who are critics as well. Some see me as a visionary. Im just some guy who got lucky and eventually got better at his craft and had fans who were patient with him through the ride. The lack of female characters can be a problem, and lets face it, Godzilla is not the draw he was years ago. But I think the medium of photo comics really gets a bad rap.
Q. TKT freely expresses ideas with uncompromising speech, creativity & intent for the savvy unflinching connoisseur. TKT is for kids at heart NOT for kids right?
A. I wouldnt say I have a mature rating so much as I do what the hell I want. The only limits are the ones I put on myself. I was the first webcomic artist to feature a live nude female in the strip, and also the first webcomic artist to pose nude for his own comic. I get to make EVERY racial comment under the sun. Yeah, Ill bet I do piss off some people to where they dont read any further or make some fans leave. But the REAL fans know who I am. Im not trying to get ANY message across. Im just trying to make everyones stay on this planet just a little more interesting and if it makes them think or gives them a reason to laugh or change their life, then good for them.
Ill tell you one more thing! I have soldiers who view my site on satellite computers, who are stuck in some Godforsaken hellhole in the Middle East. They email me and tell me how I help them make it through another day. Do you know what that does to a man, to hear from REAL heroes putting their lives on the line so that I have the FREEDOM to act like an ass in my own country and have the FREEDOM to criticize it if I want? I dont just have the freedom to do what I want on this comic, I have an OBLIGATION.
Q. Where do you get some of your evil inspiration from?
A. Inspiration always just hits me. Like the scene in the "Legends", storyline where they find out Mazingers alive? Stolen from the legendary graphitti Frodo Lives. My Revelations storyline was lifted from John Carpenters Prince of Darkness. But most of my ideas come from just being awake during the day. I have a twisted sense of humor which drives me in devious ways. So offhand comments can sometimes end up as one liners or full blown episodes. I had a really bad bout with kidney stones. So I naturally had to do a comic where my friends get miniaturized and shot into my urethra to destroy them ala Fantastic Voyage. I told you I was devious.
Q. Is it a challenge to come up with new material for those vinyls or is it 2nd nature to now?
A. The challenge is never the material. Its getting these vinyl figures with low or no articulation to conform to my ideas. Why do you think all the major fight scenes are done with giant robots in my comic? Theyre articulated. If I want the lead character to scratch his chin, I have to take several pictures of the same figure at different angles, reconstruct his body using Photoshop, and that is sometimes half an hours work for just one panel.
Q. TKT characters serve a raw irreverent yet a agreeable look at todays blogworthy & newsworthy items. Has TKT grown from one liner jokes to a kinda personal satire & niche cultural commentary?
A. My original work I dont like looking at. The art is crude, the plot is totally random, theres no focus. So yes, growth came through necessity. I never once in the first three years thought it would last this long. One liners always have their place, but I have stories I want to tell. Theyre usually a hodge-podge or ideas ripped off from other writers, but at least I have vision for them. Something pisses me off or I get a bug up my ass and I need to scream at the world about it. But doing that on a street corner gets you arrested. But if you do it in a webcomic medium, thats much more acceptable. In the beginning I could have had a clearer vision as to what I wanted to do during these past six years. But hindsight is 20-20. Im happy to have at least grown and evolved to where I am today.
Q. What is in the top secret Future of Neo-Monster Island & TKT?
A. Ive mentioned that when TKT finally ends, it will be quietly, when I have no more stories to tell. I have an archive cd of the first 500 episodes, and during my vacation Im working on the second volume for the second 500. Ill l be coming off my vacation at the end of the month, and rather than start something heavy I have a nice, lighthearted storyline to get back into the groove. The only teaser I have is after that there will be a major death in the Neo-Monster Island family. I have enough respect for KAIJUICE to leak out that much off a secret.
Thank you Sean (Shin-Goji) McGuiness for the killer lowdown on your creative origins, processes, & entities. Whoah you leaked a secret to us!!!! Big congratz on OVER 1000 Twisted Kaiju Theater episodes & 6 YEAR ANNIVERSARY. Down with H8ters Up with Players! Salutes to your comic TKT & we will spread the word thru all kaijudom come.
For more info on Twisted Kaiju Theater & all the Kaiju girls check out:
*SUPER JOY JOY BONUS FORTUNE COOKIE QUESTION:
Q: Will the Tranformers movie SUxXoRZ or RoxXoRZ?
A. Hmmm, what kind of language can I use? Because if I get to be me, then I would say the TF movie will suck 816 64y d0nk3y 84ll5. If I have to be clean, then I think it will be better than Uwe Boll directs "Go-Bots" but worse than "Marylin Monroe meets Albert Einstein" [Im not making it up, that was a real movie]. So they got Optimus Primes voice. Big hairy deal! If Michael Bay had a talking piece of poo voiced by that actor, that doesnt make it Optimus. That movie is gonna be a travesty, but it will still make money. So my final word to Michael Bay is this: You want to hide the designs of the Transformers, and not let the public see a single robot in their normal forms until they plop their asses down in the seat after haven already given you their money. What happened the last time this occurred? Lets see: a Hollywood studio kept a character design under wraps until the movie premiered using secrecy and underhanded tactics not yet seen in the industry before, opened to a big weekend, pissed off the core fans who got the franchise there, and became one of the most hated and mocked movies in history. Im talking about Tristar's release of Godzilla. All you are doing is keeping the fact you are directing a crappy movie under wraps in the poorest way possible, and declaring that YOU know more than the FANS do what they need. What was I talking about? Oh yeah. Godzilla.