Real Name: Ebirah

Identity/Class: Mutated crustacean/Kaiju (Giant Monster)

Occupation: Security guard and blockader, sea raider

Affiliations: Red Bamboo, Giant Condor (Condra)

Enemies: Gojira, Mosura

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: The Horror of the Deep, the Sea Monster

Base of Operations: The waters off the island of Letchi, South Seas, Pacific Ocean

First Appearance: “Gojira, Ebirah, Mosura: Nankai No Dai Ketto” first aired on December 17, 1966; “Godzilla, Ebirah, Mothra: Big Duel in the South Sea” (English Translation); alternatively titled as “Ebirah, the Horror of the Deep” and “Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster”

Powers/Abilities: A monstrously sized crustacean, Ebirah is approximately 165 feet tall, 330 feet long and weighs 25,300 tons, far out-massing even the largest ocean creature, the blue whale, and possessing commensurate strength to match. Its tough exoskeletal shell provides it with incredible protection from various physical attacks such as the intense crushing pressures of the ocean depths to immense impacts, but it is vulnerable to high temperatures which can conduct through its shell to its more susceptible inner organs. Ebirah can extract oxygen from water, enabling it to remain underwater indefinitely, but it is also capable of surviving outside of water as well. It is unknown how long Ebirah can remain in an atmosphere as it usually preferred to remain underwater; it was also a highly adept swimmer although its top speed was never determined.

Ebirah’s main weapons were its powerful claws that could crush solid stone and batter any structure to pieces. Ebirah was very adept with its pincers and was capable of using them to skillfully catch thrown boulders with them, and even hurl them with back. One of its claws is very narrow and thin, and Ebirah was accomplished at using as a stabbing or gouging weapon.

History: The origin of the monstrous crustacean known as Ebirah is a mystery. However there are rumors of leakage from the nuclear reactor employed by the terrorist organization known as Red Bamboo which might have contaminated Letchi Island, resulting in the mutation of an ordinary crustacean into the Horror of the Deep, as well as creating the Giant Condor that menaced the skies over Letchi. Red Bamboo discovered that they could control the gigantic crustacean to a certain extent through a special liquid extract made from certain fruits only native to Letchi that Ebirah avoided. By using it as an aerosol, they could cause the monster to specifically shun their ships. As the monstrous crustacean viewed Letchi as his “hunting grounds”, Red Bamboo could use the island as a secured base, while any intruding boats or vessels would be destroyed and sunk.  

A trio of Japanese youths discover the truth behind the mysterious disappearances of these ships when they were shipwrecked on Letchi and found Red Bamboo's slave labor camp on the island. Determined to free the slaves, the youths encounter a young girl named Daiyo,  native to nearby Infant Island, home to the benevolent Mosura. Shortly afterwards, they discovered the King of the Monsters  hibernating in a hidden cave and decided to wake him as a distraction. Improvising a gigantic lightning rod, they channeled the electrical fury of a lightning bolt to jolt the slumbering Gojira. The awakened Gojira emerged from his cave and attacked Ebirah, who quickly realized he was overmatched and tried to lure Gojira underwater into Ebirah’s environment. Gojira soon turned the tables by using his atomic breath to superheat the water, driving the Sea Monster away. Using the distraction caused by Gojira’s appearance, the trio and Daiyo replaced the special liquid extract with a fake, and then, when Gojira was busy being attacked by several Red Bamboo fighter planes accompanied by the Giant Condor, one of the Japanese youths managed to slip away and escape to Infant Island.

The next day, a Red Bamboo freighter approached Letchi and discovered that their aerosol no longer warded off the Horror of the Deep when Ebirah shattered their ship. Informed of the situation by the Japanese youth, Mosura came to Letchi Island just as as Gojira located the Red Bamboo base and began wrecking havoc on it. The Japanese youths and Daiyo freed the slaves, and Mosura transported them all of safety, but the damage inflicted by the King of the Monsters to the base caused its nuclear reactor to become unstable. Gojira and Ebirah found themselves locked in battle once more, and the King of the Monsters swiftly proved his superiority, literally ripping off the Sea Monster’s formidable pincers, forcing Ebirah to flee into the ocean depths. Gojira then departed Letchi just as the nuclear reactor exploded. The Horror of the Deep’s final fate remains unknown. Although it suffered terrible injuries but it could have survived its wounds and it may continue to lurk in the shadowy depths of the ocean.

Comments: Ebirah owes his name to the Japanese word “ebi” which means “shrimp,” and was portrayed by Hiroshi Sekida. Of all of Gojira’s gallery of foes, Ebirah is often considered to be one of the weakest opponents the King of the Monsters faced, having proved unable to give any sort of credible fight against the overwhelming powerful Gojira. This is probably due to the fact that Gojira was never intended to fight Ebirah at all. Toho originally planned for this movie to be a sequel to their 1962 “Kingu Kong tai Gojira” (King Kong vs. Godzilla) and was co-produced by Rankin-Bass to coincide with the release of their own television animation series, “The King Kong Show” and hopefully boost both their ratings. But Rankin-Bass rejected the movie and Toho reused as much of the film as possible by recasting the lead monster as Gojira. This probably explains some of the curious elements in this movie, such as how Gojira is revived by electricity and has an unlikely romantic interest in the beautiful female lead; but the sudden switch resulted in a disproportionate match-up in the power of their monstrous leads.

Ebirah would also make a cameo appearance as part of the menagerie of monsters who made their home on Monsterland in the 1969 film “All Kaiju Daishingeki” (All Monsters Attack) but the dubious nature of this film makes its credibility uncertain as it was the imaginary adventures of a young Japanese boy Ichiro in Monsterland alongside his favorite kaiju, Minira. Ebirah’s appearance itself was recycled stock footage from his first movie.

His disappointing appearances resulted in Ebirah simply disappearing from the Gojira films for 35 years until the monsterpalooza 2004 “Gojira: Final Wars” which brought back nearly every single one of the kaijus from Showa Era. Ebirah is one of many kaiju who gleefully goes on a rampage of destruction. However the years haven’t improved Ebirah’s power as the human race was able to defeat the mutated crustacean and were on the verge of destroying him when he is transported away by the Xilens, later to return as one of their mind controlled slaves. He re-appears alongside the Smog Monster Hedorah and both are swiftly annihilated by Gojira in less than a minute. Ebirah was portrayed by Toshihiro Ogura, who also acted as Keizer Ghidorah and Anguirus in the film as well.

Ebirah would also make some unmemorable appearances in several Gojira video games over the years, none of which saw him as a playable character.

Profile by Michael Higuchi.


Any Additions/Corrections? Please let me know.

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