Dedman Dean William Tsutsui Blogs from Japan

We’ve reported previously about Dedman Dean William Tsutsui’s trip to Japan as part of the Japanese American Leadership Delegation.

Tsutsui is blogging about the trip through the SMU Adventures blog.

An excerpt from a post written by the Godzilla-lovin’ Dean:

Today we arrived in Tokyo, and it turns out that our hotel is right in the shadow of Tokyo Tower, a 1000-foot-tall, orange and white knock-off of the Eiffel Tower. Completed in 1958, Tokyo Tower was a symbol of postwar Japan’s resurgence and the defining feature on the capital city’s budding skyline. Memorably, Uri Geller once used the structure as a relay point for the psychic waves he projected, bending silverware and repairing broken wristwatches all over the city. Of course, Tokyo Tower was also a staple of Godzilla movies, as it was a landmark (not unlike the Empire State Building) that no self-respecting monster could resist. In the endearing 1961 film Mothra, the huge larval creature decides to spin its cocoon on the side of Tokyo Tower before hatching into what surely is one of world cinema’s most memorable giant insects.

I could go on along these lines at some length, since I sometimes cease to think of Tokyo as a living, working metropolis and see it more as a sprawling montage of different backdrops from the various Godzilla features. The swanky Ginza district is where the monster rampaged in the original 1954 Gojira; the Diet Building, home to Japan’s parliament, was where King Kong once held court; and Tokyo Station, a marvelous, exuberant red-brick pile soon to celebrate its centennial, was where the gigantic one-eyed starfish creatures in the cheesy 1956 masterpiece Warning from Space wiggled their appendages threateningly. I have to admit that, like giant monsters, I find myself curiously drawn to the sights of Tokyo.


About Meredith Shamburger

Meredith is a journalist working for the Longview News-Journal in Longview, Texas.
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