Monarch: Legacy of Monsters: Axis Mundi
January 5, 2024 4:01 PM - Season 1, Episode 9 - Subscribe

Shaw and May search for Cate and make a startling discovery. Kentaro struggles with his loss.

I see nobody's posted about Monarch since S01E05, which I think covers the general feeling about this show. Things Happened in this episode, which is nice, but I'm barely hanging on by a thread.

Episode 9 and Episode 7 both had plot points which hinged on the promise the monsters might appear but ultimately don't -- in E7, it's the false MUTO alarm; in this one the fake-bat radiation signature.

I feel like this is an unconscious admission of guilt by the show's creators -- I came in to "Legacy of Monsters" expecting monsters, but am getting ~30 seconds of monster per episode, and the biggest monster to date is Daddy Randa, who is such a flaming asshole both my wife and I yell at the screen now when we see him.

Kill all humans! Bring us monsters!
posted by Shepherd (11 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
er, fake-bait radiation signature; a fake bat would at least have been monster adjacent.
posted by Shepherd at 4:06 PM on January 5 [2 favorites]

As the daughter of a terrible dad, I want to fucking punch Hiroshi in the face.

I am still in on this show and I have to admit I do love the explanation for why Shaw looks fresh as he does, despite his age. BUT --

* what happened during his 20 years in the Hidden World?

* Monarch defunded in 1962 but somehow they still have enough funding for private hospitals and "retirement" homes in 1982?

What a rough eleven years for Bill Randa to go from Anders Holm to John Goodman, as per the Vulture recap.
posted by Kitteh at 4:10 PM on January 5 [2 favorites]

I started watching this show because I love monsters and the Russells. I have had my fill of the Russells. WHERE ARE THE FUCKING KAIJU! We briefly see a monster for a few minutes each episode, but I came for monsters and so far, this has been a major disappointment.
posted by Stanczyk at 5:00 PM on January 5 [6 favorites]

Monarch defunded in 1962 but somehow they still have enough funding for private hospitals and "retirement" homes in 1982?

Well, Kong: Skull Island happened in between, which plausibly re-invigorated interest in Titans, and funding for Monarch. At the beginning of Kong, which takes place in 1973, Monarch only barely exists and Randa is currying favours from Senators for what little funding they can get. It makes some sense that given how big and badly that went, they might get a boost. Though I think it would be more interesting if Monarch had branched out was getting funding from more governments than just the US -- they are operating a whole bunch of facilities in Japan, for example, and it would make sense for Japan to be partly funding it. That would also explain why there are some countries in which Monarch can operate openly and others where they have to be more clandestine (e.g. Kazakhstan).

I thought the resolution of Shaw's unnatural youth just showed that the writers didn't know how to give a satisfying answer to that question. He went through a portal for a hot second, jumped forward in time, and then was just taken off the chess board for the intervening 33 years. It would have been much more interesting to have him not be immediately be imprisoned in the first place we saw him, leave some space for some more backstory. At the very least it introduces some big plot holes, for example Shaw's knowledge of modern day Monarch, which he has demonstrated previously, or his relationships with people from modern times (like Du-Ho). How did he meet any of them? how does he know anything about Monarch? The last time he meaningfully interacted with the world was in 1962. It's stupid.

When Keiko fell into the swarm of bugs at the end of the first episode I swore it was a fake-out, and at the end of this episode I literally shouted "I knew it!" when she popped back up. I think it would have been better if she had just died and stayed dead, I'm not a big fan of immortal MCs, let things have stakes. But hey, she's back so that should be fun. Hiroshi will spend the rest of his days staring at the door wondering when Bill is going to come walking back through too, since nobody he knows every stays dead for long.
posted by selenized at 9:03 PM on January 5 [4 favorites]

Keiko would be a much more interesting main character in the 21st than either of her grandchildren. For one thing, she has some science chops, and an in with monarch. Also she has some kind of drive to do things, unlike the grandkids, who just wanted to… find dad? And then they got confused by uncle Kurt Russell?

Also this show definitely needs more monsters. Maybe godzuki can join the team next year.
posted by The River Ivel at 7:35 AM on January 6 [2 favorites]

selenized, I too called it when I told Shepherd, "I bet the cliffhanger for the season will show us that Keiko is still alive and has managed to survive in the Hidden World all this time." My other prediction was a dud (Lee being Hiroshi's real dad).
posted by Kitteh at 9:04 AM on January 6 [1 favorite]

Somehow, I thought this series only had 8 episodes. I felt very cheated by the cliffhanger to the last episode as a season ending but, having said that, I am not sure I can bring myself to watch the last two episodes. The family drama was interesting enough for a while but if you have monsters in the title then I want to see monsters.
posted by orbific at 10:56 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]

It took a little motivation to get in the mood to keep watching after Episode 8, but I did it! Yay me! It's not that the show is terrible, it's just that it seems to focus too much on the things I'm less interested in and not enough on the things I am. This isn't even the lack of kaiju/titans, well, that would make things better, but in general. I found the young Monarch team more interesting and the 2015 folks, not including Kurt Russell (national treasure), and it seemed we always got more about the kids hunting their dad than the founding of Monarch. Yes, I know, the kids' journey was in part to show us Monarch in 2015, but it didn't really seem like that big of a reveal.

I concur that throwing Lee Shaw into a retirement home in 1982 and doing nothing with him for 33 years was silly. I'd like to think that there's an intervening period of time where he gets out, perhaps gains that knowledge that older Shaw has, and so on.

I don't mind the Keiko reveal, and based off the 20 year lost of time that Shaw had over the course of maybe a few days (?), it's not impossible that Keiko has been chilling in the monster lands for only a few weeks or months. Yeah, the math doesn't add up, so I think we're going to get some Jeremy Bleremy time explanation.

Poor Titan Wood Boar. In another life perhaps you and Cate could have been friends.

Yes, Hiroshi is 100% worse dad of the year. From having two separate families to faking his death, and then being shocked he hurt people by this, well, not great!

I'm very curious, however, if they don't use the characters in the hollow earth or whatever as an opportunity to time jump to sometime closer to King of Monsters.
posted by Atreides at 7:01 AM on January 8 [2 favorites]

I've like this show since the beginning. Yes, there could be more monsters. Yes, there are plot holes. Yes, some of the characters are awful people (hey, that happens in the real world as well). I just see it as a story of the people affected by the monsters, not so much about the monsters themselves. It's fine, and I'll be sorry to see the final episode.
posted by lhauser at 8:14 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]

Yeah, I finally get it. It's about the Legacy of monsters, it's not about monsters. And for that reason I will not be back for season 2. Now I need to go see Godzilla Minus One as a corrective.
posted by Stanczyk at 4:21 AM on January 12

The irony, though, is that if there is a season two, then it's more likely to have monsters.
posted by Atreides at 7:49 AM on January 12 [1 favorite]

« Older Movie: All Eyes...   |  Reacher: New York's Finest... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments