‘Gamera Rebirth’ (2023) Story, Plot, Cast, Release Date, & Where To Stream

The success of the Monsterverse franchise has allowed for the return of Kaiju culture to the mainstream and has also left an impact on even comic-book-oriented content, as seen in movies like Shang-Chi and Aquaman. Thanks to this resurgence of giant monster-oriented content, a near-forgotten Japanese Kaiju legend, Gamera, will make its debut in animated format as a Netflix original series on 7th September 2023. The character debuted in 1965, a decade after the release of the much revered, iconic monster movie Godzilla, which also served as an inspiration for Gamera’s creation, and since then has remained a fan favorite Kaiju despite being overshadowed by the popularity of Godzilla lore.


For Kaiju fans, Gamera has its own appeal that is both kind of similar to Godzilla and distinctive in its own right. Despite having a dozen live-action movies in its franchise, ranging from Showa to the Heisei era, Gamera has been absent from the big screen for almost two decades. Here’s hoping that with the release of Netflix’s six-episode anime Gamera Rebirth, the character receives much-deserved appreciation and limelight, after which an internationally released live-action feature might seem like a possibility after all.

Gamera, the Guardian of the Universe

The monster movie boom in the 1960s was largely focused on the devastating effect of the Second World War on ecology, especially the curse of atomic bomb tests, of which the titular monster in Godzilla (1954) is an allegory, and Gamera’s introduction is no exception in that regard. In its first movie, Gamera, the Giant Monster, a nuclear explosion at the Arctic Circle awakens the creature from a millennia-long slumber, and it proceeds to rampage through the world while feeding on flames and fossil fuels.


Gamera was conceptualized by an ensemble of creators: Yonejiro Saito, Masaichi Nagata, Hidemasa Nagata, and Noriyaki Yuasa, founders and associate executives of Daiei Film, the studio that had also produced movies like Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon. Gamora appears as a gigantic turtle with tusks and is a bipedal creature like Godzilla. However, the distinctive feature of the monster turtle is that it can actually fly at significant speed (Mach 3) using energy thrusters inside the shell cavities and, using aerodynamic motion, can rotate itself to attack adversaries. It also has the ability to shooy plasma fireballs from its mouth and a limited ability to manipulate fire. The design of Gamera was most likely inspired by the Eastern Asian myth of the Black Tortoise, aka Genbu, a guardian deity of the north.

According to creature lore, Gamera was one of the last guardians created by the lost civilization of Atlantis almost eight millennia ago and has been trapped inside the Arctic ever since. The Inuit were aware of the legends of the mighty beast and named the creature Gamera. While Godzilla might appear as the force of nature that balances the natural equilibrium, Gamera firmly posits itself as the protector of humankind. In a number of narratives, Gamera has formed an empathetic bond with humans and has actively protected them.


Associated Kaijus in Gamera Lore

Like most Kaiju-centric lore, the universe of Gamera is also filled with gigantic, unique monstrosities. The chief of the bunch is Gyaos, a winged bat-pteranodon-like creature that is posited as the arch-enemy of Gamera. According to the lore, even before Gamera, Gyaos was created as one of the guardians of Atlantis, but after it turned rogue and annihilated a major portion of the human populace, the Atlanteans had to create the last guardian. Gyaos has made an appearance in the majority of Gamera movies and will appear in the upcoming Netflix series as well. Aside from Gyaos, some other notable adversaries of Gamera are a Triceratops-looking monster, Jiger; a goblin shark-armed bird monster, Zigra; a quadruped modified monster, Guiron; and a cephalopod-type monster, Viras, all of whom will appear in the upcoming anime.

What Does the Trailer Reveal About the Possible Storyline?

As the trailer reveals, unlike the previous Netflix Godzilla anime series and movies, which were less about monster action and more dependent on human intricacies and sci-fi tropes, Gamera Rebirth will be solely invested in world-building as, through the course of five episodes, viewers will see Gamera face five Kaiju adversaries. Both the first and second trailers showcase some beautiful computer-generated monster mashups, and it seems the series will be the first portion of a planned continuity. True to the traits of the monster, a human connection has been teased as a bunch of kids find themselves facing the giant turtle protector. The trailer indicates the tone of the series will be dark, almost in the vein of the first Monsterverse movie, Godzilla (2014). The parent studio, Kadokawa Daiei, is confident that the debut anime of Gamera will amass a fanbase consisting of new-generation viewers and that its appeal will persist even amidst the steep competition faced by other Kaiju franchises like Monsterverse and the Pacific Rim universe.


The series will be a reboot of the previous Showa and Heisei eras of Gamera movies and will be the first Gamera-related content released during the Reiwa era. Shusuke Kaneko, who has previously directed a trilogy of Gamera movies, had proposed the idea of a new live-action Gamera movie, but by then, the studio had moved forward with plans for an anime. Hopefully, if the series turns out to be a success, the previously pitched movie can turn out to be a reality as well.

As they have produced a number of Godzilla-oriented anime movies, Netflix has the opportunity of a lifetime to bring two iconic Kaijus together for the first time—if they manage to bring the two rival studios, Toho and Kadokawa Daiei, together. After all, the King of the Monsters has already shared the screen with another icon, Kong, in several recent ventures, and it’s about time Gamera entered the arena to share the stage with them in a crossover fans have only dreamed of for decades.


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Siddhartha Das
Siddhartha Das
An avid fan and voracious reader of comic book literature, Siddhartha thinks the ideals accentuated in the superhero genre should be taken as lessons in real life also. A sucker for everything horror and different art styles, Siddhartha likes to spend his time reading subjects. He's always eager to learn more about world fauna, history, geography, crime fiction, sports, and cultures. He also wishes to abolish human egocentrism, which can make the world a better place.

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