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Buried Alien
11-18-2005, 10:34 PM
I picked up a copy of MARVEL MONSTERS (FROM THE FILES OF ULYSSES BLOODSTONE AND THE MONSTER HUNTERS) today. It's an interesting compilation cataloguing some famous monsters from Marvel history.

There are a few licensing issues, however, that I wonder how Marvel managed to avoid.

During the late 1970s, Marvel licensed Godzilla from Toho Studios and the Shogun Warriors from Mattel (which had in turn licensed the various Shogun mecha from the Japanese animation studios that owned their copyrights) for Marvel's GODZILLA and SHOGUN WARRIORS titles of that period. Both titles were cancelled circa 1980 and presumably, the licenses that Marvel held for both properties have long since expired. Indeed, although the giant reptile known as "Godzilla" in the Marvel Universe reappeared a few times during the 1980s and 1990s, he was visually altered and never referred to explicitly as "Godzilla" again...presumably due to licensing restrictions. Furthermore, the saga of the Shogun Warriors was given a definitive closure in an issue of THE FANTASTIC FOUR in the early 1980s...again without explicit visual or textual reference to the Shogun Warrior robots Raydeen, Combatra, and Dangard Ace by name.

But lo and behold: 2005's MARVEL MONSTERS mentioned Godzilla multiple times (especially in the entries for Devil Dinosaur and Red Ronin, and the Red Ronin entry further made direct reference to the Shogun Warriors *by name*).

How was Marvel able to do this? Won't they incur the wrath of Toho and Mattel (and the Japanese studios that produced the anime shows that featured the Shogun robots)?


Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)

StoneGold
11-19-2005, 12:09 AM
I think there's some sort of provision for mentioning things. Like I know with Rom, they can mention Rom, but only for a limited time per book, and they can't show the armor and say the name. Well, they can't show the armor at all, but that's beside the point. So they could have Rom show up for a panel saying he couldn't show up to Rick Jones' wedding. But only one panel. Or something like that.

Alpha to Omega
11-19-2005, 12:21 AM
I think there's some sort of provision for mentioning things. Like I know with Rom, they can mention Rom, but only for a limited time per book, and they can't show the armor and say the name. Well, they can't show the armor at all, but that's beside the point. So they could have Rom show up for a panel saying he couldn't show up to Rick Jones' wedding. But only one panel. Or something like that.

They can use Rom's human form as long as they don't call him by name because Marvel designed it and while they can't the entire armor they can show pieces of it and some of it's weapons. It's the same reason Marvel can use Galador, any of the Spaceknights, the Dire Wraiths and anything else created for the comics. This is also why they can use Arcturus Rann, Marionette and Bug from Micronauts but not Baron Karza or Acroyer who were based on toys.

Dizzy D
11-19-2005, 02:44 AM
I picked up a copy of the MARVEL MONSTERS (FROM THE FILES OF ULYSSES BLOODSTONE AND THE MONSTER HUNTERS) today. It's an interesting compilation cataloguing some famous monsters from Marvel history.

There are a few licensing issues, however, that I wonder how Marvel managed to avoid.

During the late 1970s, Marvel licensed Godzilla from Toho Studios and the Shogun Warriors from Mattel (which had in turn licensed the various Shogun mecha from the Japanese animation studios that owned their copyrights) for Marvel's GODZILLA and SHOGUN WARRIORS titles of that period. Both titles were cancelled circa 1980 and presumably, the licenses that Marvel held for both properties have long since expired. Indeed, although the giant reptile known as "Godzilla" in the Marvel Universe reappeared a few times during the 1980s and 1990s, he was visually altered and never referred to explicitly as "Godzilla" again...presumably due to licensing restrictions. Furthermore, the saga of the Shogun Warriors was given a definitive closure in an issue of THE FANTASTIC FOUR in the early 1980s...again without explicit visual or textual reference to the Shogun Warrior robots Raydeen, Combatra, and Dangard Ace by name.

But lo and behold: 2005's MARVEL MONSTERS mentioned Godzilla multiple times (especially in the entries for Devil Dinosaur and Red Ronin, and the Red Ronin entry further made direct reference to the Shogun Warriors *by name*).

How was Marvel able to do this? Won't they incur the wrath of Toho and Mattel (and the Japanese studios that produced the anime shows that featured the Shogun robots)?


Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)


With Essential Godzilla coming out, I think they just renewed the license.

Buried Alien
11-19-2005, 02:49 AM
With Essential Godzilla coming out, I think they just renewed the license.

Isn't that for the publication of the TPB only...and nothing else?

The way they were referencing Godzilla in MARVEL MONSTERS, it almost seemed as if Marvel owned his rights free and clear.

Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)

Doom
11-19-2005, 03:50 AM
I think they can get away with it because it's just done in text. I mean guys have cracked jokes about a character diving into a closest to "do his Clark Kent thing" or saying "that things as big as Godzilla."

Often it's done as a humourus aside but since they are using them as cultural icons they can get away with it.

In the case of the handbooks they are just using GZ (in proper context and everything) just not invoking the copy righted image.

I really can't say for sure sice I'm not a legal eagle. That being said maybe Marvel realised it would be lame if they didn't actually explain Godzilla's relation with guys like Red Ronnin and figured no laywers would read the hand books.

MWGallaher
11-19-2005, 05:21 AM
There's nothing illegal about mentioning a trademarked title in the text of a book, nor synopsizing a copyrighted work: surely we've all seen things like an encyclopedia of science fiction films that might run down the entire plot of each Star Wars film, with plentiful reference to Darth Vader and Yoda by name. As long as Marvel avoided using any of the trademarked "visual likenesses" (unless accompanied by a copyright notice) or the trademarked logo designs, they had plenty of latitude to reference those previously-licensed characters.

hotrodimus
11-19-2005, 06:36 AM
im a big fan of old school japanese mecha.. i certainly hope shogun warriors come out in an essential format although very unlikely

Sean McQuaid
11-19-2005, 06:38 AM
I picked up a copy of the MARVEL MONSTERS (FROM THE FILES OF ULYSSES BLOODSTONE AND THE MONSTER HUNTERS) today. It's an interesting compilation cataloguing some famous monsters from Marvel history.

Thanks for your support, sir.


There are a few licensing issues, however, that I wonder how Marvel managed to avoid...2005's MARVEL MONSTERS mentioned Godzilla multiple times (especially in the entries for Devil Dinosaur and Red Ronin, and the Red Ronin entry further made direct reference to the Shogun Warriors *by name*).

Long story short, it's totally okay legal-wise for us to mention the names of characters Marvel has licensed in the past, and to reference or summarize already-published stories featuring licensed characters.

That being said, we can't make up new material based on formerly-licensed characters (so no inserting an untold tale of the Shogun Warriors battling the Triumvirate of Terror), and we can't use the formerly-licensed characters in any sort of prominent fashion--most notably, we can't print images of them (if we could, Godzilla and the Shoguns would have had entries all their own).


They can use Rom's human form as long as they don't call him by name because Marvel designed it and while they can't the entire armor they can show pieces of it and some of it's weapons. It's the same reason Marvel can use Galador, any of the Spaceknights, the Dire Wraiths and anything else created for the comics. This is also why they can use Arcturus Rann, Marionette and Bug from Micronauts but not Baron Karza or Acroyer who were based on toys.

Generally speaking, the above observations are correct--Marvel has unlimited use of things that Marvel created for the licensed comics (like the Dire Wraiths or Bug or Doctor Demonicus), but only very limited access to the formerly-licensed properties themselves (like Rom or Acroyear or Godzilla).


With Essential Godzilla coming out, I think they just renewed the license.


Isn't that for the publication of the TPB only...and nothing else?

To the best of my knowledge, the Essential Godzilla agreement is a special, limited, one-time arrangement--it gives Marvel the rights for a one-time reprinting of their old Godzilla material, nothing more.


There's nothing illegal about mentioning a trademarked title in the text of a book, nor synopsizing a copyrighted work: surely we've all seen things like an encyclopedia of science fiction films that might run down the entire plot of each Star Wars film, with plentiful reference to Darth Vader and Yoda by name. As long as Marvel avoided using any of the trademarked "visual likenesses" (unless accompanied by a copyright notice) or the trademarked logo designs, they had plenty of latitude to reference those previously-licensed characters.

Correct.

-Sean McQuaid

protege
11-19-2005, 10:46 AM
Thanks for your support, sir.



Long story short, it's totally okay legal-wise for us to mention the names of characters Marvel has licensed in the past, and to reference or summarize already-published stories featuring licensed characters.

That being said, we can't make up new material based on formerly-licensed characters (so no inserting an untold tale of the Shogun Warriors battling the Triumvirate of Terror), and we can't use the formerly-licensed characters in any sort of prominent fashion--most notably, we can't print images of them (if we could, Godzilla and the Shoguns would have had entries all their own).



Generally speaking, the above observations are correct--Marvel has unlimited use of things that Marvel created for the licensed comics (like the Dire Wraiths or Bug or Doctor Demonicus), but only very limited access to the formerly-licensed properties themselves (like Rom or Acroyear or Godzilla).





To the best of my knowledge, the Essential Godzilla agreement is a special, limited, one-time arrangement--it gives Marvel the rights for a one-time reprinting of their old Godzilla material, nothing more.



Correct.

-Sean McQuaid
Since this is a one time deal, is the essential Godzilla going to encompass the entire series, or just certain issues?

Sean Walsh
11-19-2005, 11:18 AM
Since this is a one time deal, is the essential Godzilla going to encompass the entire series, or just certain issues?

Here's the info from the solicit:

Written by DOUG MOENCH
Penciled by HERB TRIMPE, JIM MOONEY & TOM SUTTON
Cover by HERB TRIMPE
Collects GODZILLA #1-24.
432 PGS./T+ SUGGESTED FOR TEENS AND UP ...$19.99
ISBN: 0-7851-2153-6

So I believe that's the whole series.

Zero Hunter
11-19-2005, 01:49 PM
Here's the info from the solicit:

Written by DOUG MOENCH
Penciled by HERB TRIMPE, JIM MOONEY & TOM SUTTON
Cover by HERB TRIMPE
Collects GODZILLA #1-24.
432 PGS./T+ SUGGESTED FOR TEENS AND UP ...$19.99
ISBN: 0-7851-2153-6

So I believe that's the whole series.

When does Essentail Godzilla come out?

protege
11-19-2005, 02:24 PM
When does Essentail Godzilla come out?
Janurray, I believe- i may have to pick this one up.

Siddon
11-19-2005, 06:07 PM
They did the smae thing with Essential Conan and are trying to do it with Shang Chi

Buried Alien
11-19-2005, 08:46 PM
Thanks for your support, sir.

You're welcome. In fact, I should probably thank you for putting Red Ronin in there. Tell you what: you guys over at Marvel keep putting more of Red Ronin in your comics and I'll keep buying them. :)




Long story short, it's totally okay legal-wise for us to mention the names of characters Marvel has licensed in the past, and to reference or summarize already-published stories featuring licensed characters.

That being said, we can't make up new material based on formerly-licensed characters (so no inserting an untold tale of the Shogun Warriors battling the Triumvirate of Terror), and we can't use the formerly-licensed characters in any sort of prominent fashion--most notably, we can't print images of them (if we could, Godzilla and the Shoguns would have had entries all their own).



That clears it up. It's a darn shame, though, because for two or three years there back in the 1970s, Godzilla and the Shogun Warriors were a big (no pun intended) part of the Marvel Universe. I owe my comics fandom to both their titles.




Generally speaking, the above observations are correct--Marvel has unlimited use of things that Marvel created for the licensed comics (like the Dire Wraiths or Bug or Doctor Demonicus), but only very limited access to the formerly-licensed properties themselves (like Rom or Acroyear or Godzilla).



Yeah, and that was why I was so surprised by the numerous explicit references to Godzilla in MARVEL MONSTERS. When the OFFICIAL HANDBOOK OF THE MARVEL UNIVERSE was compiled during the 1980s, Red Ronin's entry referred to Godzilla explicitly by name. During Red Ronin's more recent appearances, however, Godzilla was never mentioned by name (being instead characterized as a "time-lost dinosaur"). MARVEL MONSTERS was the first direct reference to MU Godzilla in years.




To the best of my knowledge, the Essential Godzilla agreement is a special, limited, one-time arrangement--it gives Marvel the rights for a one-time reprinting of their old Godzilla material, nothing more.


The only regrettable part is that it won't be presented in glorious, restored color. I guess you can't win them all.




Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)

Will.S
11-20-2005, 01:03 AM
I also picked up this book and I loved the format in which it was done such as the computer pages, Ulysses's notes, and Elsa's follow-up notes.

There's a ton of info and I was amazed at how many monsters are at Marvel that can still be used today. The fact that the notes referenced the recent Marvel Monsters one shots were a pretty nice touch as well further making them in continuity. I also chucked at quite a few of them such as the entries for Googam, Bombu, Droom (RIP buddy :() and Red Ronin's.

I think there's so much more potential to be tapped after all the MM books (which were all excellent alongside FF/Iron Man Big in Japan) to use them in more stories. In fact I wished Marvel did a whole Marvel Tech line like they did with M-Tech in the X-Men titles.

Zero Hunter
11-20-2005, 01:57 AM
The recent Fin Fang Foom/Krakoa story line in Exiles was pretty good.

Buried Alien
11-20-2005, 02:11 AM
The recent Fin Fang Foom/Krakoa story line in Exiles was pretty good.

And it even featured Red Ronin...although poor RR was reduced to scrap again halfway through the issue.

Red Ronin should get a better showing in these fights; after all, he once held his own against GODZILLA.


Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)

Ravenheart
02-10-2008, 08:25 AM
I just finished reading the HC of the Marvel Monsters one shots from a few years ago and I loved it.I wish Marvel would bring back these monster characters or if not that,reprint all the old monster stories.