Theme: The early Godzilla films.
Quick Summary: The Planetary field team goes to Japan to attempt to rescue a group of Japanese cultists from Zero Island, the place where all the Godzilla type monsters originated from. The cultists are die during a confrontation with international guards placed on the isle to prevent people from discovering the giant bodies.
Opening Line: “It does us good to have our genitals frozen into small blue dead things.”
Pages4-5: This is the Kaiju, Mothra, from the Godzilla film series.
Page 6, panel 1: Three pop culture items are advertised on the electric signs. The apple is of course for Apple Computers, the “Zard” sign refers to the Japanese pop group, and the triple eyed smiley-face is from Warren Ellis’ comic series Transmetropolitan.
(It was also used as the symbol of the 2001 sci-fi film Evolution.)
Page 7: panel 3: Shinya has a Ninja action figure on his speakers. The ninja is, of course, one of the most prominent pop cultural symbols of Japan. (To foreigners like me, at anyrate.)
Page 9: panel 5: Both Shinya and Master Storyteller smoke Marlboros.
Page 10: panels 2-3: The Drummer is playing with a Game Boy Camera—a state of the art toy in 1999.
Page 10, panel 3: Aum Shin Ryko (Properly called “Aum Shinriko”) is a Japanese death cult that made a toxic attack on Japanese subways in 1995.
Page 11, panel 1: This is the Skelton of the kaiju King Ghidorah, the archenemy of Godzilla. (It is often named “Monster Zero,” perhaps this is the origin of the issue’s title.)
Page 12, panel 3: Note that Snow stole these cigarettes from Shinya. See page 9, panel 5.
Page 14, panel 3: This is Godzilla. King of the Monsters. Right now he is very dead.
Page 17, panel 2: Here Jakita shows another one of the Golden Age Superman powers: enhanced speed. (Faster Than a Speeding Bullet.)
Panel 4: The Zero Island guards carry WW2 era German MP40s. Perhaps this has something to do with the Nazi-Science left-overs that the Four started with. (See issue six, “4”)
Page 20, panel 2: The bright light was probably an extra-universal snow flake, much like the thing encountered by the pulp heroes earlier in 1945.
Page 22, panel 1: This is Rodan, the pterodactyl type creature from the Godzilla movies. He is the last survivor of Monster Island.