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"Monarch: Legacy Of Monsters" Episodes 7 And 8 (Review)

Hello, everyone! I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas. There is a lot to talk about as this is the last review of 2023. I didn't do a review for episode seven last week because of Christmas. So here I am making it up for it now as well as reviewing episode eight. Let's dive into it.

Episode 7 recap:

The story mainly focused on May and her past life. We find out why she fled to Japan and finding out that May is not her real name. Her actual name is Corrah and she once worked for a company that focuses on technical advancements. However, she finds out that the company has been running some animal experiments in secret and lashed out at the company by changing their system's algorithms.

Meanwhile, Tim is still alive after his helicopter crashed from colliding with one of Godzilla's dorsals. He makes it to the airport in Algeria where he meets up with Cate and Kentaro who were looking for May. Cate explains to Tim what is going on and makes a deal with Tim that if he helps Cate and Kentaro look for May then they would help look for Shaw.

Episode 8 recap:

  • Story A: After looking and rescuing May, the gang are back at Monarch headquarters where they are tasked by Natalia Verdugo to find out where Shaw and Duvall are targeting next after taking over the base in Alaska. May discovers in one of the files about Keiko's death in Kazakhstan and decides that is where Shaw will strike next.

  • Story B: General Puckett discovers that Lee, Bill, and Keiko have been feeding the US military useless information and is ready to pull the plug on Project Monarch. In a last ditch effort to save the project, Lee gathers up all of the information gathered by Bill and Keiko as well as his debriefing on his personal Godzilla sighting to hand over to Puckett.

Kurt Russell as Lee Shaw (old) in "Monarch: Legacy of Monsters"

Starting off with the positives, I am really liking how Lee Shaw is being developed. In episode seven, there were some hints that he was going to turn out to be the show's antagonist. In episode seven, his first appearance was him, Duvall, and other people hijacking a Monarch outpost in Alaska and then sealing up the Hollow Earth entrance. While he has told the researchers at that outpost he was not there to kill them and offered them to join his side over Monarch, it really made him seem like he was expanding his new terrorist organization that I thought would grow to be the terrorists in Godzilla: King of the Monsters. However, episode eight rectifies this and gives a better explanation of Shaw's motives. His intentions are more based on sentiments over losing Keiko in Kazakhstan and wanting to atone for it. He was supposed to protect her and failed when she needed him most, so he feels like he has to finish his job where Bill and Keiko left off. This makes the trio in Story B and how they work together so much more impactful. I honestly felt bad for Shaw after he told his story to Cate in episode eight. He is not out to seek destruction nor for some greedy personal gain. He is tormented every day by his guilt and how he wished he could have saved Keiko some how. He feels that by sealing up these entrances to the Hollow Earth his sin would be atoned. Shaw is not an antagonist as episode seven hinted at before. His is a character tormented by tragedy and it shows just by how he tells his story.

Even in the Story B arc, we see Shaw is worried about Project Monarch getting shutdown because of one person failing to report Godzilla's discovery to Puckett so resources can be focused more on fighting the Soviets. He even goes into great detail telling Bill and Keiko, "Look, we need more than just eyewitness reports. We need something more concrete like a map, photos, and official documentations and we need that ASAP." That is what I love about this trio. They are more than concerned about the project. They're concerned and looking out for each other. They care about the well-being of each other. Their friendship feels more solid. I want to see these characters succeed and it makes me disappointed when an episode doesn't feature them. They make the show a whole lot more interesting.

What I will criticize about Shaw is that his argument about Monarch is flawed. He argues that Monarch did nothing to stop G-Day, but yet we have seen all of these different outposts. In the movies, Monarch has had these monsters contained. When something happens, it was not like they were sitting on their hands and doing nothing. They were trying to get things under control and it just so happened the monster escaped containment. Sure, Monarch is not painted in the best of light in this show and it shouldn't be. The organization is not an organization that forms a team of super heroes. They're an organization that had lived in secrecy for more than 60 years until G-Day happened. They're not happy with this situation they found themselves in. Even in Godzilla: King of the Monsters, we saw Dr. Serizawa and Lindsey Graham are having to testify to Congress what Monarch does and why these monsters are important to the planet. At the same time, Monarch is always improving and learning. They know how dangerous these monsters can be and are doing everything they can to understand them as well as making sure this does not happen again. So I feel his logic is flawed, but not totally.

The depiction of Monarch in this show does make them look inept and I blame that on Natalia Verdugo. The fact that they can track down these monsters and fails to track down one guy is baffling. Verdugo scoffs at the idea that Shaw can remotely feel sympathy and thought going to Kazakhstan would be a waste of time even though that was the place where Keiko was killed by the Endoswarmers. Verdugo must be the worst Monarch director in history if she just thinks every idea is a bad idea and she is so damn annoying that I just want to see Dr. Serizawa walk in to her office just to fire her ass.

I liked how the Frost Vark made one more appearance in episode seven attacking Shaw's helicopter as Shaw and his gang attempt to close up the portal in Alaska. I honestly thought it died in the explosion, but rather it gets sucked back into the portal. It happens quickly and it is one of those blink and you miss it moments, but you can see the monster getting sucked back into the Hollow Earth, which makes me wonder if there is a link between these portals and the monsters. Could they be acting as guardians of the portals? We even see this resonate with the large Endoswarmer at the end of episode eight. The monster beetle was there at the entrance of the Hollow Earth in Kazakhstan and it too got sucked back in as the portal was closing. So it makes me wonder if there are more to these portals.

When it comes to May, or I should say "Corrah," you learn more about her past and why she ran into hiding in episode seven. Yet, the episode didn't seem all that life threatening. We see May kidnapped by the company that she formerly worked for and her former boss was just, "I am so upset with how you almost destroyed the company, but because I have heard you were traveling around the world and came across Monarch and the Titans I will let you off the hook. Can you work for me again?" And May's response was just her saying no over and over. Her boss didn't even give her an ultimatum. She just gave her choice to work for the company in secret or not and May wanted no part of it. Even her friend's attempt at rescuing her seemed rather pointless. I felt as though May was let off the hook too easily and should have had more of a consequence when getting captured. Threaten her family's safety or something. This is where stakes should have been raised and the episode failed on that.

May worked for a technology company that would later reveal to be rebranded as APEX, the company that would create MechaGodzilla in Godzilla vs Kong. While an interesting reveal and seeing the very early stages of the device that Ren Serizawa uses in the movie, it was just only okay. It was cool to see this company referenced in the show for the world building and to see where APEX first started. I was expecting for some references to the technology we've seen in the movies and we finally got to see that. It is a shame we don't get to see more of it. I would like to see blue prints of stuff like the maser canon or the Argo or even the oxygen destroyer. Maybe in a second season we will see that happen.

As for Cate, her romance for May is getting a little too weird. Their relationship is building a little too quickly and, honestly, makes me feel bad for Kentaro. I would have thought that he would be the one to win May over and reignite their relationship again after everything they had went through, but no. May doesn't even forgive him nor give him the time to thank him for coming to rescue her. May just acts like Kentaro doesn't exist. Kentaro is just there watching as his half-sister is giving a loving embrace to May and Kentaro just doesn't care. I don't really understand why this relationship between Cate and May is happening in the first place.

However, Kentaro really needs another episode with him stepping up to the plate. Right now, he feels like a third wheeler that is just there. He seems desperate to leave and go home, but the show just drags him along by a leash. Apparently, episode nine will focus on him, but we will see. I hope he really gets more character development because all we know of him is that he was formerly an artist that has a dad that disappears constantly, an ex-girlfriend that either bad mouths him or ignores him outright, and has a resentment toward his father for faking his death. Kentaro is in dire need of some character development and needs it ASAP seeing we only have two episodes left. Otherwise, I forget he is in the show half the time.

Overall, Kurt Russell, Wyatt Russell, Anders Holm, and Mari Yamamoto as Lee Shaw (old and young versions), Bill Randa, and Dr. Keiko Miura are really carrying this show. I am really enjoying their time on screen and how they interact with each other more than Anna Sawai, Ren Watabe, and Kiersey Clemons as Cate, Kentaro, and May. Cate's romance for May is progressing too quickly and Kentaro really needs to step up his game as he is becoming forgettable.

What are your thoughts on episodes seven and eight of Monarch: Legacy of Monsters? Did you have a favorite moment? Which characters do you like most and which ones do you think needs more improvement? Leave a comment in the comments section of your thoughts on these two episodes. Make sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Minds, MeWe, Gab, and TRUTH Social to stay up to date for more news, reviews, and discussions.


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