The Tale of The Tape: Godzilla vs. Kong

I recently returned from an incredibly relaxing vacation.  While I sat, sunning on the beach, I pondered life’s many mysteries; “Why are we here?“, “What is the sound of one hand clapping?”, “Who will win when Godzilla and King Kong ultimately throw down?”. What? Don’t act like you weren’t wondering too. The fact of the matter is that this showdown is set to take place exactly on May 22, 2020,  giving us ample time to theorize about who the actual victor will be.  Adam Wingard, director of the upcoming, Godzilla vs. King Kong has already gone on record that there will be a clear winner.  So, in order to get a sense of who will be the last monster standing, let’s take a look at the first time these behemoths did battle then examine their current stats.  After all, we want to be ready when Vegas starts posting odds. (link)

Back in 1962, mankind engineered the first battle between these two legendary beasts.  In a nutshell, the original Godzilla vs. King Kong was a brawl that ended in a draw when the Japanese Defense Forces essentially airlifted King Kong and placed him directly in the path of a rampaging Godzilla to avert the destruction the giant lizard was set to visit upon Tokyo.  Ultimately, both monsters, after doing battle, fell off a cliff into the Pacific Ocean.  In the final scene, only King Kong is seen swimming away but both he and Godzilla can be heard roaring, indicating to the audience that each had survived. (link)


Now, 55 years later, Godzilla and King Kong have been reimagined on a rather fearsome scale.  Each has already made his cinematic debut; first the “Legendary” Godzilla in 2014’s Godzilla (with a sequel set to hit theaters in 2018) and the King of the Apes in Kong: Skull Island earlier this year. (Yes, I’m aware of the Peter Jackson and Roland Emmerich films-but we do not speak of these…ever!)  What do we know about the two combatants whose confrontation looms just beyond the cinematic horizon?

Here’s how it breaks down:



Now introducing, in the Red Corner…weighing in at massive 158 tons and standing an incredible 104 feet tall, the protector of Skull Island, The Swatter of Biplanes, the Kidnapper of Blonde Starlets, The Scaler of Skyscrapers… he’s nobody’s monkey, he is KING KONG!

Kong’s stats are based upon the beast we meet on Skull Island in 2017. Assuming that he is some sort of Gorilla/Chimpanzee hybrid, which can be argued by the shape of his skull, it is possible that he is about twice as strong as humans relative to his size.  This would mean that Kong could lift almost 474 thousand pounds or 1.5 times his weight. His height makes him easily taller than the Sistine Chapel and his bite would be 400 times stronger than that of the Nile Crocodile.  Another fact to consider is that the Kong of Skull Island is relatively young when we encounter him, his parents having been killed by the monsters who reside there.  This means that he has another three years of growing to do before he meets his foe, making his sheer power and ability merely a thing of speculation at this point.  He is likely to be much more deadly than anticipated. (link)



Introducing, in the Blue Corner…weighing in at an unbelievable 164 tons, standing an earth shattering 355 feet tall, measuring 550 feet from the top of his scaly head to the tip of his terrible tail…the Scourge of Tokyo, the Fire Breathing, Building Smashing, Atomic Lizard…he stomps first and asks questions later…he is, GODZILLA!

Godzilla’s stats are likewise based off his 2014 film.  He clearly both outweighs and towers over his hairy opponent.  Couple this with the fact that he can spew atomic fire from his mouth, whip his massive tail at a moment’s notice and easily take Kong off his feet,  Godzilla is the obvious favorite in this brawl for it all. Also working in Godzilla’s favor is his swimming ability.  We know that he travels just under the surface of the water, much the way that a dolphin would and his speed is such that in the 2014 film, he caused a tsunami to hit Hawaii. Where the big guy falls short, however, is his walking speed, estimated at approximately 18 mph.  Still, that’s 18mph of angry, lumbering thunder lizard…not something you’d want to meet in a dimly lit alley. (link)



We have no idea about the circumstances leading up to this contest.  Crucial elements such as location, the condition of the participants, the involvement of other “Kaiju” (literally meaning “Japanese Strange Beast) may play enormous roles in who will stand and who will fall.  Nevertheless, there is no law against speculating.  My money is on Kong.  I know that’s an unpopular opinion given the undeniable disadvantage that he faces against a bigger, more powerful opponent, but hear me out.  The one area where Kong has a sizeable advantage is agility.  We already know that King Kong can move quickly, he can scale large buildings, use boulders and other sneak attacks. Also, as a primate, he is better suited to outthink his reptilian opponent.  He may very well run circles around a confused and frustrated Godzilla who will be waiting for an opportunity to set Kong on fire or step on his noggin.  With a moving target like Kong, that opportunity may never come, ending in Godzilla catching some Gorilla hands.  (link)

Now, if the battle moves from land to water, Kong is toast.  I don’t see how he competes with Godzilla, who may as well be the Michael Phelps of the Monster world. Although Kong swam away in the 1962 film, he wasn’t dealing with a lizard who had the same underwater skills as the modern incarnation of Godzilla. The dude moves like a torpedo.  That being said, a battle at sea doesn’t sound nearly as exciting as one on land and while the fight may move from place to place, my instincts tell me that it will be decided on terra firma giving Kong the upper hand and consequently, the win. (link)

Make no mistake, over the next three years the debates on this one will be endless.  It’s also likely that more of the story about how these two are set to collide will play out in various films leading up to the ultimate showdown, giving us more to go on with respect to who stands the better chance. What we do know, however, is that although there will definitely be one loser, we’re all going to be winners when we get to witness this spectacle.  So settle in, fight fans. Monster sized bragging rights are at stake and only one legend can claim them.

Place yer bets!


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