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A THEORY OF THE SHOWA GAMERA'S ORIGINS
by Den Valdron

edited by Chris N
[most of this editor's additions will be placed in brackets and initialed, and particularly significant additions by me will be placed in blue text

All right, try this on for size. I theorize that the Heisei Gamera was created by the lost Lemurians [the editor doesn't share this sentiment, but it fits the author's previous theories; note the author's ammendment to this theory based upon further evidence he uncovered down below--CN]. But was this true of the Showa Gamera?

Remember that with Toho, the Heisei and Millenium series offered the opportunity to completely re-think and rewrite the Godzilla cosmos. Thus, the Showa Toho Universe [STU] had aliens, while the Heisei Toho Universe [HTU] was driven in part by time travellers but lacked aliens [not counting, of course, the non-sentient alien crystalline life form from deep space that merged with the G-Cells sent into the interstellar void and through a black hole via Biollante's dispersed pollen form to create the super-kaiju called Space Godzilla--CN].

So, in terms of the Heisei Daiei Universe [HDU], the same principle might follow. Thus, what we know of the Heisei Gamera might not necessarily hold for the Showa Gamera.

In the case of the Heisei Gamera, we know that he was created by Lemurians to battle giant monsters that threatened their civilization. But in the Showa Era, there is no sign of anything like a Lemurian civilization in any of the Gamera movies. At the very best, we might have very indirect hints of Lemurians in monsters connected to ancient legends, Jiger and Barugon. That's hardly a solid foundation to begin extrapolating, however.

But oddly enough, one thing we do have in the Showa Gamera universe is aliens. In fact, most of Gamera's foes are aliens: Guiron, Viras, and Zigra are all clearly extraterrestrial. Gyaos is apparently terrestrial, but in Gamera vs. Guiron we see a 'Space Gyaos' flying around [more than one, in fact--CN], which suggests that Gyaos itself is extraterrestrial [I always preferred to see Gyaos as a terrestrial being, created by genetically engineered Lemurian technology as a bio-weapon, and when a displaced Lemurian convoy formed the intra-solar colony of Tera, they brought with them modified versions of the asexual Gyaos kaiju, who eventually escaped from human control there and formed a small breeding population on that world, thus resulting in the 'Space Gyaos' entities--CN]. Only two of Gamera's foes seem to be clearly based on Earth [this editor argues in favor of Gyaos being an Earth-based entity who was eventually migrated to Tera, as explained in my above ancedote--CN].

The frequency with which Gamera battles extraterrestrial menaces, and Gamera's own ability to fly through space to other worlds, seems significant. Could Gamera itself be extraterrestrial, or possibly conceived or developed as a defense against extraterrestrial menaces?

There's very little in the Showa Gamera series to explain Gamera's origins [save that the giant turtle is evidently described as "prehistoric" in his film debut--CN]. Gamera is originally woken by an atomic blast and heads for Tokyo, eating everything in its path. Bundled into a rocket, he's shipped off into space where an impact with a meteor frees him. Suddenly able, in Gamera vs. Barugon, to fly by withdrawing its head and limbs and shooting jets of flame out the holes, it spins back to Earth and soon becomes the defender of the world.

Well, okay. There's ample precedent for atomic blasts waking up dormant kaiju. And a giant turtle is not such a stretch, either. But a giant turtle that is able to fly in such a bizarre fashion? One which seems able to withdraw its head and legs and spin around on jets of flame? We can perhaps accept Godzilla's atomic breath, Yongary's fire breath, and the Behemoth's electric bolts, but this? To assume that this is merely an accidental mutation seems bizarre.

Nor is this the only bizarre aspect of Gamera. After his first eruption, Gamera is steadfastly on the side of humanity, defending it from various menaces. It would take Godzilla a long time, even under the guidance of Mothra, to become even relatively tolerant of humanity. Most other kaiju never picked up the knack at all.

Moreover, Gamera seems to have an almost telepathic bond with children. In Gamera vs. Guiron, he pursues a flying saucer into outer space to rescue children, somehow able to sense their distress as they call for him across the void of space. In Gamera vs. Viras, he rescues a child from a submarine. In several of his films, he is strangely sensitive to and aware of children in a way that suggests some degree of telepathy, empathy, and even intelligence.

These traits in Gamera are clearly not natural mutations. Rather, the only conclusion can be that Gamera is an artificial creature, designed or bred to be a protector of humanity.

But who would or could create Gamera? Are we back to the Lemurians? Not necessarily. Instead, I would suggest we examine Daiei's other science fiction or kaiju-films to see if there are any clues. And indeed, we find:

WARNING FROM SPACE (a.k.a.) Uchujin Tokyo ni Arawaru/The Mysterious Satellite/The Cosmic Man Appears in Tokyo/Space Men Appear in Tokyo/Unknown Satellite Over Tokyo (1956, Daiei) The Paira, the aliens who resemble gigantic, five-pointed starfish with a large eye in their center, arrive from outer space to warn Earth of an impending menace. Taking human form to put the Earthlings at ease, they warn man against using nuclear weapons and offer their help in saving Earth from a runaway fiery planet (shades of Gorath!) on a collision course with Earth. After destructive heat waves and tidal waves batter the planet, a Japanese scientist develops a special bomb which the aliens use to destroy the planet, after which they depart.

Now, this is quite interesting, being the only other science fiction from Daiei apart from the Gamera series (not counting the Dai Maijin films, which were much more in the genre of period fantasy than sci-fi). A decade before Gamera's appearance, Earth is visited by gigantic starfish-like aliens who just want to help out. A still from the movie indicates that these are kaiju-sized starfish. It's tempting to try to incorporate them into the fairly loose continuity of the Gamera world.

Also, the Pairans are five-pointed or five-armed creatures, something that might suggest that their design or constructions also feature five sides or segments. I think that it's notable that Gamera itself is a five-pointed creature of sorts. His fiery jets emanate from the four holes for its four limbs.

So, I would suggest that as a workable theory, Gamera was created by the Paira aliens after or during their visit, to act as a protector for the Earth in their absence. After all, they couldn't be expected to come racing across interstellar space every time we got in trouble. It made sense to have a guardian on the planet, able to respond to problems immediately.

But, nuclear detonations, which the Paira had warned us about, wakened the guardian prematurely. With its programming and functioning impaired by the effects of the nuclear blasts that had woken it, Gamera was initially a menace.

Luckily, the Paira had provided Earth with technology that accelerated the space program. Thus, we were able to bundle the immense creature into a rocket and shoot it into space. It's likely that the rocket was a giant cargo ship, intended to construct or supply space stations and moon colonies. In fact, a moon colony has been established (and destroyed) by the year 1985, as seen in Gamera vs. Zigra.

Of course, the Gamera guardian, after being knocked about by a meteor, straightened out, and returned to Earth to take up its duties. And not a moment too soon, as deadly menaces from Earth and space were showing up on a seemingly annual basis.

An observation about the Paira and two of Gamera's adversaries, Viras and Zigra, is worth noting. All three appear to be races of gigantic, shape-shifting, size-changing, aquatic extraterrestrials who just happen to visit Earth. What are the odds of that? It strikes me as much more likely that the Paira, Virasians, and the Zigra are all related.

Of course, Zigra notes that it has polluted its watery planet, so obviously, they are not all from the same world. But given their shared characteristics, it is tempting to see the three races as all springing from the same source, i.e., a 'root' race of aquatic giants. Or perhaps the Paira are the root race, and the Virasians and Zigrans are merely their degenerate and corrupt off-shoots. But nevertheless, there is a certain symmetry in tying the three extraterrestrial races together, and in tying Gamera to them.

Obviously, this still leaves the sort-of-human, brain-eating alien women in Gamera vs. Guiron, and the decidedly non-aquatic, non-shape-shifting and non-size changing monsters, Guiron and Gyaos. And it leaves the apparently terrestrial monsters of Jiger and Barugon.

Here we can only speculate. Looking at Jiger and Barugon, their natures and special powers argue against them being natural monsters. Guiron is not, by any stretch of the imagination, a natural monster but a guardian of his alien world, protecting what remains of the Teran colony from incursions of the 'Space Gyaos' entities that inhabit that planet, as well as any off-world menace. The world of Guiron and the brain-eating ladies, situated on the exact opposite side of the sun from the Earth, is probably not a natural planet, but rather, an artificial space colony. And somewhat different versions of Gyaos as a space traveler frequenting or terrorizing both worlds may be just as artificial [the Showa Gyaos seen on Earth had dark-colored skin, and was only able to hunt and forage in the absence of direct sunlight; the 'Space Gyaos' seen on Tera resembled their terrestrial counterpart, save for having silvery-white skin and the ability to move about and ravage freely in direct sunlight, but both had the identical physical attributes otherwise, including the wielding of a highly formidable sonic lance weapon--CN].

Is it possible that the Paira, or perhaps their relatives, visited Earth in the distant past, and created these monsters, either as guardians or persecutors of humanity? Perhaps the Paira or their relatives established the space colony opposite the Earth (Tera) and peopled it with human slaves or assistants, who then became privy to more advanced technologies than their relatives left behind on Earth.

One can go any which way on this. Perhaps the Paira visited and helped advance human civilization, assisting in the creation of the space colony and guardian monsters, which became dormant or went renegade upon the fall of the civilization.

Or perhaps the Virasians or Zigrans visited, inflicted monsters to ensure that Earth would not develop, and established a base peopled with slaves, so that they could keep a diligent eye on Earth.

Or perhaps the Paira fought the Virasians or Zigra here, with both sides creating monsters, both helping and harming the Earth people in the process. This might explain why Guiron is so inimical to Gyaos, if the monsters were created by different sides.

Or another interpretation might be that the monsters were left or sent by the Virasians or Zigrans as 'time bombs' intended to soften the planet up for the later invasion by one or the other imperialistic race.

SOME FURTHER SPECULATIONS

The Heisei Gamera Series established clearly that Gamera is an artificial being, constructed by a lost Atlantean civilization which also created Gyaos and other threats. Gamera was created to be the protector of mankind [the Heisei Gamera was explicitly described as the creation of the ancient Atlanteans, but it's possible that the Heisei Gyaos were created by the rival Lemurian/Muan civilization, and this creation later got out of hand with its asexual reproductive ability--CN].

Fair enough, and not taking any issue with that.

But, when we apply this theory to the Showa Gamera Series, we have a big problem: lack of evidence.

There is no tangible evidence of a Lemurian civilization through the seven or eight Gamera movies of the Showa Series [this editor does not personally consider the eighth Gamera film, Super Monster Gamera, to be part of the Showa Gamera Series, nor Gamera's Heisei Era Series, but rather an "interim" film that occurred in a distinct continuity--CN]. Unlike the STU, there are no lost undersea civilizations of Muans and Seatopians, there are no ruins or relics [it was implied in Gamera that some Atlantean relics were discovered prior to the 1960's in that reality, but nothing definitive--CN].

The only indications within the Gamera movies themselves of any past history are Gamera vs. Barugon and Gamera vs. Jiger, where these kaiju (or eggs) are found buried on islands and surrounded by local legends. But this is a far cry from conclusive evidence, or any kind of evidence.

However, there is ample evidence that Gamera in the Showa reality must be an artificial creature. His method of jet powered flight seems completely unnatural, his ability to travel underwater, on land, through the air, and even in interplanetary space, defies natural evolution, his role as a protector of humanity and his ability to telepathically link with children all imply that this is not a natural being.

By that token, at least some of Gamera's adversaries seem equally unnatural. Jiger's curious physiology is bizarre even for kaiju. On the other hand, Zigra, Viras, Guiron, and even Gyaos seem to be products of alien technology or evolution [the latter arguable, IMO--CN].

But if Gamera is not natural, and if there is no indication (or scant evidence) in the Showa Daiei films, inside or outside the Showa Era Gamera film series, that Lemuria, Atlantis, or some past civlization ever existed, then where? Who? Why?

It is worth noting that in the Gamera Showa Series, that even if there's no evidence of ancient civilizations, genuine aliens certainly exist.

The Virasians and the Zigra are two very distinct, very alien races. In Gamera vs. Guiron, Gamera travels to a world on the opposite side of the sun called Tera, inhabited by a pair of human/alien women, and encounters two alien monsters 'Space Gyaos' (indirectly) and Guiron. Space Gyaos suggests (to this author) that the terrestrial Gyaos is likely extra-terrestrial in origin.

Hence, the majority of Gamera's foes - Gyaos, Guiron, the 'Space Gyaos', Viras ,and Zigra are alien in origin. Only Barugon and Jiger seem to be Earth-born.

Thus, it's not unreasonable to wonder if Gamera was created to be a protector of humanity by friendly space aliens.

But within the Showa Gamera Series, all the space aliens, save for the Pairans, are distinctly unfriendly. So the matter remains hypothetical...there isn't any real candidate within the Gamera series to explain it.
But that's not the end of the story. Well prior to Gamera, in 1956, the Daiei studios produced a remarkable science fiction movie titled Warning From Space:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0049900/

This movie featured giant starfish-shaped aliens with a large eye in their centre called Pairans.
In the movie itself, they are human-sized starfish, but capitalizing on the popularity of Godzilla, in the film's posters and publicity stills, the Pairans are shown looming over buildings and are definitely kaiju-sized monsters [much like the Virasians and the Zigrans definitely possessed the power to achieve kaiju-size, as seen directly in their respective films--CN]. One can make allowances for posters in regards to artistic license, of course; certain liberties are always taken there. But publicity stills showing gigantic Pairans walking amongst buildings suggest that they were inherently kaiju-sized, or (more likely) capable of achieving kaiju-size, despite this not being directly alluded to in the movie.

The Pairans are also able to shape-shift (likely via advanced technology), and one of them takes on human form, so as to avoid frightening the humans.

The Pairans traveled to Earth from a world they called Paira, which was located in a solar system (i.e, a series of planets) on the opposite side of the sun [!?...more likely a nearby star system located only a few light years from the Sol system--CN].

Their mission was to keep humanity from destroying itself with a new nuclear device. While here, they became aware of a rogue planet on a collision course with Earth and worked with humans to destroy it. They are definitely benign aliens.

Now, applying Warning From Space to the Showa Gamera continuity, several interesting parallels show up.

- The Pairans, being essentially large sentient starfish, are presumably aquatic. The Zigrans and Virasians are also aquatic.

- The Pairans are able to change their size to and from human proportions to kaiju scale... as can the Virasians and the Zigra.

- The Pairans are able to assume human form. As can the Virasians.

- The Pairans presumably have psychic or telepathic abilities, as do Viras, Zigra, and even Gamera himself.

- The Pairans have a home world or base in the Sol system on the opposite side of the sun, which they call Paira... and in Gamera vs. Guiron, we visit a nearly abandoned or empty world in the Sol system on the opposite side of the sun, which is called, by its two remaining humanoid occupants, the phonetically similar name "Tera" or "Terra" (the latter being the 'actual' name of the planet Earth, named after the Roman goddess of terra firma and this planet's biosphere).

So, it appears that the Pairans, the benign aliens of Warning From Space, have very strong correspondences with at least two known races of malign aliens from the Showa Gamera Series: aquatic, size-changing, shape-shifting, starfaring, non-humans. This suggests that they are related. The three races may all spring from a common ancestor. Or perhaps two of them are off-shoots of the third.

Moreover, the Pairans home or base overlaps with that of a third malign race. It is extremely tempting to infer that the two worlds in our solar system on the opposite side of the sun with phoneticaly similar names, are indeed and in fact, the same world.

There is nothing to contradict this suggestion in Gamera vs. Guiron. In fact, the door is explicitly open for this conclusion, since that film depicts an empty world populated only by Guiron, a horde of 'Space Gyaos', and two women...but an empty world full of intact buildings, working machinery, and spaceworthy craft. It's almost as if this world was only recently abandoned.

But if recently abandoned, who were the original inhabitants, what were they like, why did they leave, and where did they go?

Warning From Space offers a hint, given that the Pairans' self-appointed mission was to watch over humanity from their hidden base, once they were exposed and the threat was past, they may have no longer needed the base and simply closed up shop and went to their true home...leaving only a few 'care-takers' behind.

The departure of the Pairans from their base may have been the real trigger, resulting in the efforts of Viras and Zigra to invade a now unprotected planet.

The only thing missing from the Showa Gamera Series is the Pairans themselves.

The Pairans, I would submit, are the absent and mysterious creators of Gamera.

And in fact, I would submit that the Pairans created Gamera specifically to protect Earth, not just from rival kaiju, but from their malign sister races (as the giant fire-spewing turtle does a good job of both).

Further, Gamera may not have been the first or only guardian kaiju set by the Paira. The giant living statue, Maijin, may also have been such a guardian. Like Gamera, the Maijin seems responsive to tears or women and children, and it is animated to seek justice in the face of strong emotions from the oppressed [this editor finds the author's evaluation of Maijin quite interesting, though it was clearly stated in the films that Maijin was animated by a deity, thus suggesting a supernatural origin, and there need be no rule insisting or suggesting that all kaiju on any given reality must all have an inter-connected origin, or that magick and the supernatural does not exist in the Daiei Kaijuverse--CN].

On the other side of the coin, the malignant kaiju, or at least some of them, may have been the creations of the malignant alien races, as part of their competition with the Pairans.

Based on this, I'd offer a preliminary and tentative sequence of events which might tie the Gamera and other Daiei sci-fi cinema together.

- The Paira, an aquatic, size-changing, shape-shifting intelligent species emerges and begins to travel in space.

- The Paira establish space colonies on other worlds, notably that of Viras and Zigra. The Pairans who colonize these new worlds diverge both physically and culturally from their parent world, becoming predatory and aggressive for unknown reasons.

- The Pairans discover Earth, extant in a nearby star system, some time in the last several thousand years.

- This discovery leads to Zigran and Virasian interest in Earth as a planet for exploitation.

- The Zigrans and Virasians create Jiger and Barugon respectively, as kaiju bio-weapons to participate in their competition to take over Earth.

- The Pairans intervene, shutting down both monsters.

- The Pairans establish a base and build a city on a large asteroid on the opposite side of the sun, which is called "Paira" or "Tera". This is intended to be their peace-keeping base, through which they will insure that the inhabited but primitive Earth is no longer interfered with.

- The Pairans adopt and train a small handful of humans from Earth as care-taking staff for 'Tera'. This may well be part of their attempt at 'uplift.'

- The Pairans also go to Earth where, taking assumed human form, they exhibit various supernatural (psychic or technological) powers, giving rise to various legends.

- The Virasians or Zigrans, or possibly the two working together, create Gyaos (later modified into the 'Space Gyaos') to attack the Pairan facilities.

- To defend 'Tera', the Pairans create Guiron as the resident guardian monster. It succeeds in warding off their enemies.

- The Pairans create Gamera as a guardian monster. But after its initial deployments to defend Earth, it is sent into a long sleep.

- The Pairans create Maijin as a long term guardian, having realized that 'human appearing' guardians are more desirable.

- Thereafter, Earth is safe as the three sister races maintain their stalemate.

-The three Giant Maijin movies take place in Japan's feudal era (beginning with Maijin, Monster Of Terror).

- Over time, the Maijin guardian eventually breaks down or is destroyed [Maijin doesn't ever appear battling dai kaiju in any of his three onscreen exploits, but rather avenges oppressed humans, who worship him as a god, from the depredations of various feudal warlords--CN].

- Human civilization, watched over by the Pairans, progresses until it begins to concern them.

- 1956, the events of Warning From Space. The Pairans intervene to prevent humanity from acquiring a weapon that might destroy it. Later, they work with humanity to destroy a rogue planet that threatens Earth.

- 1956 to 1966 - The Pairans, concluding that humanity can now look after itself, decide to close their 'Tera' base opposite the sun, and return to their home world. They leave behind only their dormant guardian, Gamera, a resident monster, Guiron, and a skeleton staff of six human care-takers.

- 1956 to 1980 - The all female human Care-takers of 'Tera' have a falling out, with half wishing to carry on the Pairan's mission to protect Earth, and the others, lead by Giloki, wishing to abandon their duties. The three 'guardians' win out, imprisoning the three renegades.

- 1956 to 1966 - Assisted by the infusion of Pairan technology, the Earth's space program leaps ahead. Soon, Earth is constructing gigantic cargo rockets capable of ferrying thousands of tons into space. These are used to build space stations and a moon base.

-1965- The events of Gamera take place. The Paira kaiju guardian, Gamera, is woken by the increasing levels of radiation on Earth (one of the reasons for the Paira's concern was the danger that radiation posed in rousing dormant kaiju). The sudden and huge influx of radiation causes Gamera to malfunction, so that he temporarily becomes a raging destroyer as he seeks heat-based energy sources to refuel himself after so many centuries of dormancy. Eventually, Gamera is lured onto a rocket and shot into space, en route to Mars.

1966- The events of Gamera vs. Barugon. Gamera's rocket collides with a meteor, destroying the vessel and freeing the reptilian kaiju. The shock 'resets' Gamera's systems, and he returns to Earth with full use of his powers, as a guardian. Barugon is activated, either accidentally, or by either the Virasians or Zigrans from afar, and is defeated by Gamera.

1967- The events of Gamera vs. Gaos. The Virasians, aware that the Pairans have abandoned the Earth system, activate the nocturnal version of Gyaos, who begins preying upon the populace of Japan. Gamera defeats Gyaos.

1968- The events of Gamera vs. Viras. The Virasians send an expedition to Earth, which is ultimately defeated by Gamera.

- The three 'guardians' of 'Tera', concerned about the attacks of Viras, travel through space to seek the intercession of the Pairans. The intercession is successful, and the Virasians leave off their attacks...for the time being.
Meanwhile, the three renegades of 'Tera' escape. One steals a spaceship and goes off into space. The other two decide to flee to Earth, where they initially remain in hiding for a time.

1969- The events of Gamera vs. Guiron. The last human survivors on the 'Tera' base decide to kidnap human children in order to facilitate their escape to Earth. Guiron battles and defeats a 'Space Gyaos' who attack the remnant of the Teran headquarters. Gamera travels to 'Tera' to rescue the children and defeats Guiron.

1970- The events of Gamera vs. Jiger. Jiger activates when a statue admitting a certain electromagnetic frequency that keeps her insensate is removed from the area by humans for the 1970 Expo, possibly manipulated by the Zigrans. The powerful and deadly kaiju is defeated by Gamera with the aid of some of his young human allies.

1985- The events of Gamera vs. Zigra. - A Zigran, having wrecked its own world, decides on the conquest of Earth. First destroying a moonbase and kidnapping a resident of the lunar base as its slave, it then proceeds to Earth, where it encounters and is destroyed by Gamera.

1990- The events of Super Monster Gamera. Zigran and Virasian remnants regroup for one last effort at invading Earth, taking the collective name of the 'Zanon', and led by the renegade Giloki. Recreating identical versions their old monsters as part of their campaign, they attempt to conquer Earth once more, but are stopped by Gamera and the two benign 'Tera' guardians.

Just some thoughts to add to the Gamera thing...

- I suggested that the Virasians and the Zigra may have initially created kaiju like Barugon, Jiger, and Gyaos in order to conquer Earth. Or they may have used these to fight each other to see who gets Earth. And that the Pairans created Gamera later.

- It is possible that any or all of the Jiger, Barugon, or Gyaos troupe may have been originally designed and created as anti-Gamera weapons. In which case, Gamera may have been put in place early to defend the planet, and the Virasians and Zigrans may have developed at least some of their kaiju specifically to take out Gamera.

- In either case, we may have seen Earth loaded up with giant monsters in a state of M.A.D. deterance. Rather than risk destruction, the three races may well have agreed to put their monsters to sleep. A treaty might well have looked like this: Virasians and Zigrans get one monster apiece on Earth. The Pairans get two, Gamera and Maijin. The second Gyaos is excluded from Earth and restricted to space. Guiron is confined to 'Tera.'

- An alternate hypothesis is that the Pairans may have deposited Gamera on Earth much later, perhaps as late as around 1956, possibly as a parting gift. They may have wanted to ensure a kaiju guardian on Earth in their absence.

- However, I still think it's likely that Gamera was created first, followed by Maijin. The alien Pairans would need experience to realize that humans would be more comfortable with a human-seeming guardian (resembling a heroic but fierce samurai warrior) and might be frightened by a non-human creature...they were still having trouble with that notion as late as 1956.

- In terms of the two 'space women' of Gamera vs. Guiron, it strikes me that the evidence suggests that they were not being completely honest. Although they were the self-proclaimed last survivors, they were not really in control of Guiron nor of the planetoid's major machinery. Also, despite their protestations that the world is dead or dying, the machinery appears functional, the spaceship travel-worthy, the air breathable, and the planetoid imminently and indefinitely habitable [the evidence seen in that film, IMO, clearly point to the 'space women' having direct control over Guiron's actions, with his original purpose of guarding them fully intact--CN].

- The fact that the world is mostly quite barren, albeit somewhat overrun by a breeding colony of 'Space Gyaos,' suggests that the original inhabitants have left. But if so, then who are these women? Why are they still there? Why do they know so much about the world, even though they cannot control it?

- The only conclusion is that they were residents who were imprisoned there and left behind for some reason, and are now trying to break out.

- It seems likely that the Pairans were the original occupants. But these women are human. It seems likely that the Pairans would have had human servants or assistants, in addition to the two imprisoned women. When the Pairans left, they would have left their assistants behind.

- In terms of the human inhabitants of 'Tera', in addition to the two females seen in Gamera vs. Guiron, I believe that we should also include the three heroic 'space women' of Super Monster Gamera, and the evil 'space woman' of the same movie. In considering these four additional women as part of the 'Tera' group, we can then explain the connection of the good ones with Gamera, and the affiliation of the bad one with the 'Zanon' and other kaiju.

- This would mean that we have a total of six remaining human inhabitants of 'Tera', who may have been left behind by the Pairans. From there, we can envision a power struggle and falling out as the six try to decide what to do.

- Alternately, the renegades may have already been imprisoned by the Pairans, and part of the mandate of the other three were to act as their jailers.

- The fact that the planet in Gamera vs. Guiron seems almost barren, apart from Guiron, the horde of 'Space Gyaos', and the two women, suggests that the three 'guardians' must have been off on a mission, which would leave the three renegades with the opportunity to escape. One must have escaped into space prior to 1969, leaving only the two behind.

- What was the mission of the three 'guardians'? Given that the Viras had begun reactivating kaiju and had tried an invasion, it could only be to enlist the Pairans to rouse from their homeworld and stop the invasion at its source. Because this would be happening in deep space, the Earth would never know. The only indication that it would have happened is that there would not be a follow up invasion or second wave by Viras.

- The Virasians departing the field may have cleared the way for the Zigrans to make their own attempt nearly two decades later.

- The aliens have a thing for women. In 1956, when the Pairans visit Earth, the take a woman's form. In medieval times, it was usually women who woke the Maijin. The inhabitants of 'Tera' all seem to be women. The Zigra chose a woman slave for its invasion. The 'guardians' and 'enemies' in Super Monster Gamera were all women.

- We don't necessarily have to knock Lemuria [or Atlantis?] out entirely. It might be that the Pairans' contact with Earth and attempts at uplift created the Lemurian civilization, and that it was destroyed by meddling of the Virasians and Zigrans. In this way, potentially, we could meld the Gamera Showa and Heisei continuities [in the opinion of this editor, the Gamera Showa and Heisei continuities were entirely different--CN].

Finally, the aliens of the SDU are completely different from the aliens of the STU. It's the completely different nature of the aliens that seems to be the big distinguishing factor between the two kaiju film continuities.

When initially composing this essay, I had seen Gamera in about a dozen years, so this little detail slipped by me. Excerpted from this review site:

http://www.braineater.com/gamera.html

"Dr. Hidaka's mission is to find evidence concerning an ancient Eskimo legend about the lost continent Atlantis (just let that thought sink in a minute... it gets even better!). Hidaka is looking for evidence to support a theory he has about gigantic turtles that lived thousands of years ago in Atlantis."

So...it appears that there's a suggestion that Atlantis (but not Lemuria) appears in Gamera Showa continuity, and that Gamera or others of his ilk may have been native to ancient, pre-Cataclysm Atlantis.

It also seems to have implied that Atlantis was apparently perched in the Arctic Ocean and not the Atlantic, as everyone might think. Not only are there Eskimos, but other references in the film clearly place the area as the Arctic Ocean [it's possible that Atlantean explorers reached as far as the Arctic regions in the past, possibly establishing small colonies or outposts there, even though most of their civilization lived on a small island continent in the Atlantic Ocean, as the legends suggest--CN].

Meanwhile, another peculiar reference:

"On first hearing of the monster, Murase immediately jumps to the conclusion that Gamera is one of the giant turtles mentioned in the prophecies of Plato."

To be fair, Plato is the originator of the Atlantis myth. I don't recall Plato mentioning giant turtles [at least, in the "real" universe he didn't; however, things may have been different in the SDU--CN].

It doesn't materially change my theory. And it can be incorporated easily enough by suggesting that Atlantis was a Pairan uplift society, with a built-in kaiju guardian.

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