Godzilla: King of the Monsters introduces new monsters to Warner Bros. and Legendary's MonsterVerse. Among them is Mothra, a giant moth-like kaiju often accompanied by two small fairies - roles that Millie Bobby Brown and Vera Farmiga's characters may take the place of in this Godzilla sequel.
Mothra is unique among the kaiju typically featured in the Godzilla franchise. Unlike Rodan or King Ghidorah, Mothra first debuted in the serialized novel, The Luminous Fairies and Mothra by Takehiko Fukunaga, Shinichiro Nakamura, and Yoshie Hotta. Toho later commissioned the novel to be adapted into a film, which became 1961's Mothra. Both the book and the film share the same general story of an island where Mothra is worshipped as a goddess, and when outsiders arrive and kidnap the fairies (in the novel, there are several while in the films only two) Mothra hatches from her egg and chases after her fairies, before eventually transforming into the adult, winged form of Mothra and rescuing them.
Unless angered, Mothra is typically a benevolent and peaceful monster, acting as a protector and often doing battle with other monsters to thwart their needless destruction. A key reason Mothra can play this role of benevolent protector is her ability to communicate with humans via her fairies. In Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Madison Russell (Brown) and her mother, Dr. Emma Russell (Farmiga) may not be literal fairies, but they may very well play a role similar to Mothra's fairies and act as the link between Mothra and humanity.
Mothra's Fairies Explained
Throughout many of Mothra's film appearances, her fairies - the Shobijin or small beauties - are there to act as intermediaries between Mothra and humanity, relaying their wishes to the Goddess of Monsters and translating back the kaiju's response. It's through these fairies that humans can know Mothra's intentions and understand that, unlike Godzilla or the other giant monsters, Mothra doesn't wish to harm humans. The Shobijin are also telepathic, and have at times demonstrated telekinetic and teleportation abilities as well. Through their singing, the fairies can summon Mothra, even across great distances.
Originally, the only explanation given for the existence of the Shobijin was that they simply came from Infant Island, where Mothra resides. There are other people native to the island who worship Mothra, but they're depicted as normal-sized humans, not tiny women. Later versions of Mothra's origin would explain the Shobijin - or Cosmos or Elias, they go by many names - as the last survivors of an ancient and advanced race who predated humanity. Still, in every incarnation, Mothra's fairies serve above all as a means of communication between Mothra and humans.
Which brings us to Godzilla: King of the Monsters and its version of Mothra. While it would be highly unlikely for a MonsterVerse film to include a pair of singing fairy twins (Legendary are aiming for a more grounded and somewhat realistic interpretation of Godzilla) there may still be a need for a character or characters to act as that line of communication between humans and the mighty Mothra.
Millie Bobby Brown Has A Connection To Mothra
There isn't much we know about Millie Bobby Brown's Godzilla 2 character, Madison Russell. Her parents are Mark Russell (Kyle Chandler) and Dr. Emma Russell, the latter of whom is a scientist working for Monarch. Madison and her mother are at one point kidnapped by another "mysterious organization" with plans for the various Titans, while Mark joins Dr. Ishiro Serizawa (Ken Watanabe) and Dr. Vivienne Graham (Sally Hawkins) on the rescue mission.
Other than those few details all we can glean about Brown's character comes from the film's first trailer. In it, Madison is inside an Arctic base alongside her mother, Emma. This is presumably the base of the organization that kidnaps them, and it also appears to be where the frozen Ghidorah and Mothra are held. During those shots, one scene appears to show Madison reaching out and touching the larva form of Mothra, resting her hand on its head in a gesture of comfort. While it's hard to know for sure, this moment could be the initial meeting between Madison and Mothra, suggesting that from the get-go there exists a connection between the two.
The moment may simply be a gesture of empathy and nothing more, but even so, it implies a link between Madison and Mothra which doesn't seem to be shared with any of the other characters. This in itself isn't enough proof for Brown's character being the MonsterVerse's version of the Shobijin, but upon learning the focus of her mother's research, the similarities with Mothra's fairies become all the more obvious.
- Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) release date: May 31, 2019
- Godzilla vs. Kong (2020) release date: May 22, 2020