There is no denying that Godzilla is a cultural phenomenon, both within the creatures country of origin- Japan- and worldwide. However, not many cultural icons get their own theme park attraction, let alone a life sized replica of their head made for said theme park attraction for visitors to zip line through. Godzilla really is one of a kind.
The attraction had been delayed due to the Covid 19 pandemic but it has now officially opened on October 10th within the Nijigen no Mori amusement park- otherwise known as the Awaji Island Anime Park. Located on Awaji Island in Japan’s Hyogo Prefecture, the Godzilla statue used in the attraction is the world’s first full scale incarnation of the Japanese Kaiju. It is only his head and neck but it is still hugely impressive, measuring in at around 75ft tall. The attraction itself- called “Godzilla Interception Operation Awaji”- features that terrifying zip line ride into Godzilla’s mouth as well as a shooting range game and a visit to the world’s first Godzilla museum. Godzilla is a true phenomenon with movies- both American and Japanese-, animations and an upcoming Netflix anime series to name just a few of his media portrayals. His role as an iconic movie monster is stronger than ever before and his influence has never died down in both Eastern and Western culture since his debut in the 1950’s. I have no doubt that one day we will get a full scale, full body Godzilla statue. He certainly deserves it.
Since Covid 19 is making it almost impossible to travel at the moment, the best we can do is watch some first person POV YouTube videos of people embarking on the zip line ride. Honestly, that is enough for me. I’ve always been a bit of a wimp when it comes to large things, especially monsters or creatures of any kind. I used to be scared of walking past a particularly tall building in my town when I was a child. Don’t get me started on when I went to the Natural History Museum in London as a kid and had to be dragged in by my parents due to my screaming at the prospect of a life sized dinosaur. I just have a fear of being squashed or eaten alive okay? Stop judging. I think I would probably pluck up the courage to go on this, but it would definitely freak me out seeing a Godzilla replica that size. You know what? I think I will stick with the YouTube videos. Have a look at the video above from the YouTube channel 朝日新聞社 (The Asahi Shimbun)and for more on the Awaji Park attraction; check out their official website here.