The Past is Present


There is no doubt we are living in the next Godzilla boom, that is arguably the greatest. The scope, availability, and prevalence of the Godzilla license is unmatched. The Godzilla community is bigger than ever with the ability to meet and share our love for Godzilla and collecting on social media. New Godzilla collectibles appear almost weekly. The Godzilla Store online grows and stores and kiosk are popping up in the U.S. like they are in Japan. Godzilla Day is now an international event, maybe becoming a holiday. New movies, anime and series have been made and are in the works. And there are many online shops to find what we are looking for. We are living in a Godzilla explosion.

Yet at the same time, as a Godzilla collector, for me what is old and what is just as new as the new releases. Japanese Godzilla collectibles are a click and a day away. We can buy now and have a box day tomorrow. For me the availability of the older Godzilla collectibles has been amazing and unprecedented. Items I only dreamed of having are now in my collection. I can google key words and do research. Then find my grail collectible on online Japanese shops like Amazon Japan, Mandarake, Hobby Search Japan, From Japan, AmiAmi and Hobby Search Japan to name a few. And then there is Yahoo Auction, Mercari, and Buyee Japan, where I can find the stuff my dreams were made of growing up.

Growing up in the 80s and 90s, all we had were magazines and local shops with few who had knew what was going on in Japan and that had access to the Japanese market and goods. I bought Japan magazines Hobby Japan, Figure King (フィギュア王) and Uchusen (宇宙船) To scout out new releases. I could only hope that they would found at my local shops and conventions. So much was want but even more was missed. Today, I can see what I missed out on from the 80s through the 90s on social media, find it, buy it, and have it arrive in the mail a few days later.

So over the last two years my Godzilla collecting has turned into archaeological digs. Looking back for all the collectibles that alluded me. I’m recovering my past dream items and along the way I’m rekindling those formative and deeply-rooted feeling of nostalgia. I’m digging deep into research, surveying social media to learn more about my favorite collectibles and their creators. My connection to them both has deepened. What I collect now has more meaning and are tied to their original contexts and place in Godzilla history. I can now learn more about and associate with those who made those early figures, kits, books, and more. I’ve been so surprised to find those vintage Godzilla collectibles I always wanted. The internet and social media have made this possible and brought more of the past into present.

For example, over the last 12 to 24 months, I’ve found Ken’s Godzilla and Pee Wee Herman’s Jumbosaurus, my Godzilla Gang and friends, my long-desired Bandai Godzilla from 1984, vintage figures, games, and more. In addition, I’ve found a litany of original Godzilla ads, tickets, film, events, books, scripts, posters and other print material. I’ve met the legendary garage kit modeler Hitoshi Hayami on social media. It has spawned a season of learning, study and research spanning the history of Godzilla.

There has not been a better time for Godzilla collecting. It has never been a more fruitful season for appreciating and finding those old treasures as much as the new. I’m grateful for the privilege of collecting at this time.