Thursday, April 1, 2010

History of Power Rangers: Introduction

I sadly didn't have time (or inspiration) to think of and put together a joke review for April Fool's Day, so enjoy the introduction to my new limited series the History of Power Rangers.

Wait, I'm actually putting together a video series analyzing Power Rangers? The joke's on me! ‎


Chris said...

Oh, this is gonna be sweet. I admit I'm one of the many people who got driven off the franchise by Turbo *coughjustincough*, but Power Rangers is still awesome in a silly way, even so long after I left its target demographic.

Of course, what really annoyed me was how it was popular one year, but then the very next nobody around me watched it anymore, as if suddenly actors in spandex fighting rubber monsters with giant robots was uncool. Go fig.

Slade Dreizehn said...

Nifty. How will the series stand on their own. Good question.

I do remember watching up through Zeo as a kid. Looking back at some of it, I'm surprised I liked any of it as much as I did.

... then again, I'm still watching Kamen Rider. XD (though, that's a little less dumbed down, but it's still a kids show... and even the latest season, "W", along with the 07 season, "Den-o" were very kid friendly even by american standards.)

Sorry, I can't help but bring up one aspect about the Sentai vs Ranger change over: that being 'Go-onger' vs 'RPM'.

Admittedly, I haven't watched a single episode of RPM. With that said, I still find it hilarious that Toei crafted a season that was practically gift wrapped for Disney to use, and instead Disney goes for the 'darker angle' to compete against Kamen Rider Dragon Knight.

Which was based on the 2002 Kamen Rider Ryuki.

Which was produced by Toei.

And then just last year, Toei made a season so steeped in classic Japanese Samurai drama trappings that it almost feels like them flipping off Disney and saying "fine, try this on for size."

Of course, that could purely be just my perception and humorous out look on life talking...

But I do find it funny that rather then actually trying to use "Shinkenger", they just went all they way back (as you mentioned) to the first season and pulled a "transformers g1" mod. (ever watched transformers in the ninties... no not beast wars, but the 'reboot/reload/rerun' of g1, with added effects).

It just seems a little too much of a coincidence to me is all.


Yeah, Power Rangers. I've been following your tweets and already I'm amused by the coming videos. Like I said, I kinda gave up around Zeo (though I did know about Time Force as I worked at Toys R Us at the time) and I will love to actually get a real run down of the shows with out having to sift through the mess that is Wiki.

Awesome, Looking forward to this.


Kylie said...

You use a lot of big words, you know that? XD

Sorry, couldn't resist. Anyway, as a weak Power Rangers fan myself (That is to say that I watched it when I was a kid, but didn't think about it agian until the Mechakara fight) I'm curious as to what you are going to say. Power Rangers was just one of those things that I was either really into, or really against depending on the episode. (I might have been watching two diffrent series without knowing it... I don't know, I'll Wikipedia that later.)

We've all got nerdy childhood obcessions. About two years back, I was rewatching all the old Speed Racer episodes, and was pretty much a addict. That was until I realized that I was looking for logic and understandind in an 1967 anime where cars could fly and monkeys had more personality than the actual main cast. Trust me, Power Rangers (as weird and crazy as it gets sometimes) makes semi-perfect sense when compaired to what I was watching as a kid.

Heath said...

I'll agree with the others, I'm quite looking forward to this. I watched it when I was a kid, and caught some reruns when I was laid out from a back surgery, so I'll be interested to see if your opinions from watching it differ.

Otherwise, looking forward to it. My girlfriend and I both love your review style, and seeing it attached to something other than comics will be interesting.

Slade Wilson said...

Man I love Power Rangers, its cheesy as hell but its also awesome.

Emi said...

Oh, wow, looks great! I look forward to seeing more!

I stopped watching around... Zeo, I think, but I've been interested in catching up for awhile now. I watched most of the Magic Force one and liked it a lot, but that's because I'm a sucker for magic-based things AND for cheesy giant-robot shows. So it's like the best of both worlds. XD But the original Mighty Morphin' ones are my favorites, of course, because those were the ones I watched first when I was a kidlet.

Billy was my favorite. He was awesome.

P.S. You may be an obsessive freak, but you're OUR obsessive freak, and you're awesome. X3 *sends appreciative e-toffee*

P.P.S. How long did it take you to get through all those episodes, anyway?

CMWaters said...

Hmm, you said you wouldn't go over the first Power Rangers movie, but what about the second one?

I don't know anything about it, but since you didn't mention you'd go over it or not, I figured I'd ask.

Miss Kitty Fantastico said...

I'm actually really interested to see this. I wasn't allowed to watch Power Rangers as a kid because my mom believed it was stupid (though she let me watch Pokemon with no problem), so it was always something that was a bit of a mystery to me. I do have an interest in watching SPD though after my Sentai loving best friend showed me the pilot and it actually managed to draw me in.

Razorgeist said...

Cool I look forwar to these!

Anonymous said...

*sigh* Believe it or not... I stopped my frequent watching of Power Rangers after Wild Force. Disney kinda screwed up the franchise for me once they took over year later in, I assume, my teenage years.

I have no clue why I still watched the Rangers up until Wild Force, but there's something about the entire series that kept me going back to it. Much like the Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game for me nowadays, particularly for video games.

The only "good" Disney Power Rangers, in my opinion, were R.P.M. because it looks awesome, even though I haven't seen any episodes of it, Dino Thunder because it has Tommy in it, and Mystic Force because of the, well, magic. Honorable mention goes out to Operation Overdrive for the creative 15th anniversary concept.

Clare C. Greenstreet said...

Can't wait for this series! Love Power Rangers even though there was a time I never watched it.

Puddle Jumper said...

This has to be the greatest idea I've seen in a long while. I'll definitely look forward to your following videos regarding this, Linkara.

MFlorian said...

I got into Power Rangers when I was younger and, god help me, even dragged my father and brother when I went to see the movie. Not intentionally. That's just how it worked back in the day.

That being said - time to revisit the cheese of our youth. Here's hoping it aged well. =)

The Vigilante said...

When I saw you tweeting about this, I started watching the old episodes on YouTube. This is too cool lol. I'm reliving my childhood again!

SynjoDeonecros said...

Wow, when you said you were going to cover ALL Power Ranger seasons, you really mean it. I'm predicting a lot of pain when you get to the Disney/New Zealand era of the show, and a lot of knuckle-biting to keep from the furry jokes when SPD rolls around. Or Jungle Fury.

Predictions of things that will likely bug you: giant anthropomorphic dog as a Ranger, the Turbo movie, the Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation crossover in PRiS, the move of production to New Zealand (despite New Zealand having banned Power Rangers since the first season due to its violence), Phantom Ranger, robot Red Ranger, sixth Ranger as ball of light, and giant anthropomorphic dog as a ranger. Oh, and extra Rangers in Jungle Fury.

Good luck on this quest of yours, Linkara, and as the giant floating head says, may the power protect're going to need it.

日本文化のマニアック said...

Ain't nothin' wrong with loving the cheese, especially nostalgic cheese. I liked this as a kid, but always felt sort of guilty about it. I knew it wasn't good, but there was something about ordinary kids piloting giant robots and fighting monsters that really hooked me in.

And now I am an anime fan. Figures, huh? :D

Paul S. said...

I can think of at least two cases in which the original Sentai series directly affected the quality of the American counterparts.

One of the reasons that Power Rangers Turbo turned out so badly was that it's corresponding Sentai series DekaRanger was a wacky over-the-top parody. This was exactly the opposite of what Saban wanted at the time and thus hardly any of the action footage was used.

Another interesting case is Power Rangers SPD which started out as one of the strongest shows in the series but was ruined by executive meddling. Basically the original series DekaRanger introduced a seventh ranger later in the show's run and for some reason Disney didn't want to shill out the money to hire another actor. The result was the introduction of Sam a character who was a CGI animated ball of light, who the writers tried to avoid using as much as possible.

Alex Stritar said...

Wow, Link, only you could take on this kind of Hurculian task. I mean, I hounistly doubt I could do this kind of thing, espesially when I thought about doing a review of the entire Pokemon anime, but got scared off when I relized just how much I'd have to cover. Might do it later on, but not until I actually have the time and resources to do such a thing. But if anyone could review an entire series that has lasted over a decade, it''s you. Anyway, can't wait to see it.

Falcovsleon20 said...

Ah Power Rangers. The one fad from my childhood that I regret. Still, I'll probably give these videos a watch. I love a good informative video and to be honest, there are some themes and aspects of cheesy live action Sentai shows that I enjoy.

SynjoDeonecros said...

Paul S., Dekaranger was turned into Power Rangers SPD, not Turbo; Gekisou Sentai Carranger is what Turbo was based on.

Paul S. said...

SynjoDeonecros - *FACEPALMS*

I can't believe I got those two typed backwards before I hit the send button.

Dg said...

I'm actually very excited for this :3 I haven't seen power rangers in foreeeeeeeeeeeeeeever and apart from the original series, I only have vague memories of some later series that I watched on and off. I loved the concept and I love seeing analytical perspectives on doofy kids shows, particularly by people who I tend to think are intelligent and have good ideas on stuff. I love it and I can't wait to see.

Though I know Atop the Fourth Wall is your main show, I can't help but hope that the power rangers history takes less time than your Let's Play videos, just because I reaaaaally wanna see more of this and all the waiting was killer. But if you can't get to it fast, that's cool :3 you have to have your priorities

David said...

This show actually has way more ties to comics than it seems as the original series in japan back in the 70s had deep ties to marvel. The entire premise was actually kicked off by a 70s japanese spiderman show which also included a giant robot and a mariachi player (???). And indeed one of the first few seasons was heavily influenced by Marvel characters, even if they were heavily internationalized.

Trevor said...

I've been loving this series. I'm a huge Power Rangers fan, though I didn't really like many after MMPR. However, I recommend going to watch the original Zyuranger and such. Not to review or anything, but just to enjoy. They are great shows on their own, and Shinkenger has actually become my newest addiction. It's funny to watch the shows that came before Zyu as well. Some of them are...interesting to say the least. Especially the suits, wow.

Can't wait for Part 3.

Green Ninja said...

I was surprised to hear your going to skip the movie. I remember when I was younger the move was about the one thing about Power Rangers I I enjoyed the most. I thought it was better than most of what I knew of the show.

And I can't wait for the Turtles Crossover. I disliked the live-action TMNT series because it was too much like Power Rangers.

ShadowWing Tronix said...

Actually, I think too many of the live Saban shows (VR Troopers was the only other good one) played too close to the Power Rangers formula. Mystic Knights was just Power Rangers set in medival times, Beetleborgs was PR with a younger cast (although they dropped the Bulk & Skull wannabees in favor of the Universal Studio monster knockoffs), and Masked Rider, even although there was only one of them, had less elements but screwed up what it did have.

Hossrex said...

I have a bizarre relationship with Power Rangers. I was 14 when it started, and while I watched it the first couple weeks (the pre-hype was crazy), I was simply too old for it.

Although while I didn't actually enjoy it, I had a strange pang somewhere deep in my usually soulless body, as I realized that the show hit EVERY SINGLE MARK that I would have been looking for when I was 11 or 12.

If I'd been even just a couple years younger, this would probably be my favorite show of all time.

It's like flipping past Mtv, and hearing a catchy song. You realize it's crap, because you're not a dumbass little kid... but you still recognize that it's the type of crap YOU loved when you WERE that dumbass kid.

Great stuff Lewis. Love the site.

Anonymous said...

Man, this brings back memories. I think I only ever saw the original series as a kid, but I was obsessed with it back then.

Strange as it might seem, I've always wondered what would happen if someone tried to a "sentai" style show (American or Japanese, although it would probably work better as an anime) that was aimed at an older audience and with the camp removed, sort of like how giant robot shows in Japan started out as over the top super-powered affairs before spawning the (supposedly) more mature "real robot" genre.

The Vigilante said...

Lewis, when you get around to Turbo, please, please, PLEASE include something about the ending of episode 42, "The Rival Rangers", because that may well be one of the funniest things I have ever witnessed in an episode of the show ever. Granted, it is also kind of disturbing, but still, I pretty much almost fell out of my chair laughing at that. Just a request, though - I know you have your own plans. Hope Chicago is treating you well!

ryanlb said...

I probably won't comment much throughout this series (I don't comment much on your site at all, though I love your comic reviews), but I wanted to say that I'm quite interested in this series.

I have never been a fan of Power Rangers (too old, probably) but I am curious enough about it to enjoy hearing your thoughts about it, and learning something new about it.

Mateja Kovač said...

Alright, this is gonna be sweet! (3 years later)