Judd Lynn: The King Of Power Rangers Writers

THIS IS 100% PERSONAL OPINION AND DOESN’T REPRESENT THE POWER RANGERS FANBASE OR PRODUCTION TEAM IN ANY WAY, SHAPE OR FORM.

Anyone who’s ever ventured into the television industry usually gets inspiration from something or someone else. Whether it’s an actor, a director or a writer.

For the past 4 and a half years, I’ve been working on my Associates’ Degree in Digital Arts and Film. During this time, I’ve figured out I’m better at the creative process of film/television rather than technically. As such, one of my desires is to become a writer, or head writer, of Power Rangers. And who is my favorite in the entire series? None other than Judd “Chip” Lynn.

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Saban Brands/Getty Images 

For those who’ve never heard of him before, he basically started at the beginning of the series as a production manager and eventually moved up to a staff writer and eventual director. After former head writer, Douglas Sloan left after the first half of Power Rangers Turbo, Judd took his place and stayed on as head writer, story editor and co-producer through the end of Power Rangers Time Force.

After 7 years of building houses, he returned to Power Rangers RPM as the season’s Executive Producer after Eddie Guzelian was fired by Disney.  (It’s also rumored that he wrote a few episodes for Power Rangers Jungle Fury under a pseudonym during the 2007-2008 Writer’s Strike, but that has yet to be confirmed). He then returned to take the Executive Producer role again for Power Rangers Dino Charge and retains that role today.

While his current actions are controversial in the fandom, he’s well noted as the person who “wrote the book” (as Linkara puts it) on how to do a traditional Power Rangers season. What he did during his original tenure really affected how Power Rangers was produced.

This article basically explains my thoughts on why he’s the “king” of all the Power Rangers writers and why his seasons are the best both in age and storytelling.

 

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Saban Brands

Serialization & Continuity

Up until Power Rangers In Space, a lot of Power Rangers’ episodes were very………formulaic. Particularly in the Mighty Morphin’ days. Yes, of course, there were story arcs like “Green With Evil”, the “Alien Rangers” mini-series, the Gold Ranger mystery and the Replacement Turbo Rangers, but they were very distant from each other in their seasons and a lot of the times, the filler episodes never really amounted to anything other than a “wagging finger” moral.

This picked up when Judd Lynn took the helm as head writer. While filler episodes still existed, a lot of them served different purposes to expand the season’s story and only a handful of them were bare bones (Lightspeed Rescue’s Mermaid episodes for instance). His seasons were very serialized to a tea and you didn’t really feel bored watching them.

Continuity also improved too. What I mean by that is that fan service was instated and done right. Before then, we barely had any old Rangers returning (Jason was just brought on as ratings boost, unfortunately), old and exotic locations weren’t mentioned or visited and villains were forgotten about as soon as they fled or god dismantled.

What was In Space’s first scene? A party featuring Zedd, Rita, Master Ville, Mondo, Machina and Divatox throwing a party and seeing their quarrels with each other. What was the next callback? The Phantom Ranger hunting for the captured Zordon and giving them a new Zord. Which old characters came back? Justin and Adam, each having a dedicated episode to themselves getting an update on what they’ve been up to since retiring and dawning their spandex once more. How does In Space end? With an invasion across the universe with every single evil force attacking multiple Rangers and the sacrifice of everyone’s floating head in a tube.

What about Lost Galaxy? They hi-jack the Space Rangers’ Astro Megaship and Alpha 6, Trakeena visits Onyx, the Physco Rangers return leading to the Space Rangers showing up, Karone pretends to be Astronema to get Kendrix’s Quasar Saber after she was killed and had to face herself as Astronema.

OK, so what about Lightspeed Rescue, Time Force, Wild Force and etc? Those seasons seem loosely connected from what came before. What’s that? An old enemy returns? Forcing the previous team to return and help the current team? Huh. It takes place in the same universe.

Basically, he knows that the history of Power Rangers mattered whether it was a planet that they visited or a weapon that they used, he found a way to utilize these details and connect them in one universe. If In Space didn’t go in that direction, then it would have been disastrous…….like it is now, but that’s beside the point.

 

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Saban Brands

Characters

Most of the characters on Power Rangers in the early days were, to be honest, flat and had two-dimensional personalities. A lot of them were high school stereotypes as well as perfectionists who did absolutely nothing wrong and had no major flaws what so ever.

Come to the Lynn era and what do we have? Well, as far as Red Rangers go, Andros is a lone wolf that has teamwork and trust issues, Leo’s a headstrong risk taker, Carter gets into tough situations that require quick thinking, Wes is a rich kid who wants to step out of his father’s shadows and Eric wants to prove that he is so much more than a guy who grew up dirt poor.

These, and other Rangers’ strengths & weaknesses proved that you didn’t need to be perfect to be a superhero. You can still be a Power Ranger and still have flaws, and over time, you’ll overcome those flaws and be the best you can be. It makes them more relatable. I’m pretty sure there’s a number of fans out there can relate to any of the Lynn-era Rangers to some extent and even beyond that.

What about the villains? They’re more relatable too. Astronema is a brainwashed war general and Ecliptor was her sergeant father figure. Trakeena wants to prove herself to her father that she can fight and her trainer, Villamax is her loyal knight after her father disappears. Diabolico & Olympius had a power war with each other which causes an effect on and off the battlefield. Ransik was a disfigured mutant that was shunned by society, so he became a criminal and took it out on society themselves.

The villains had much deeper traits and qualities than what came before. You really felt sorry for them and felt bad that they either lost someone or were un-rightfully killed. Just because they’re the bad guys doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be hated on automatically.

 

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Saban Brands

Realistic Storytelling

Power Rangers has had its share of great storytelling and the Lynn Era (in my humble opinion) did it best. And I’m not talking about story arcs or “OMG! There’s blood!”, I’m talking about how he used realism in the series whether it was subtle or not.

By itself, Power Rangers is already an unrealistic show. Giant robots, teens doing everything under the sun on top of being superheroes and people acting like those monster attacks never happened. However, just because it’s unrealistic most of the time doesn’t mean that there can’t be realism inserted as well.

A lot of these episodes asked several questions. “Is destiny set in stone?” (Time Force) “Is revenge the right answer to everything?” (Lost Galaxy) “Is the obvious choice the right choice?” (Lightspeed Rescue) “Can you really BE evil?” (In Space) These are all questions we ask ourselves at any point in life and it was good to see that Judd used Power Rangers to ask these questions. “Trial By Fire” to me is still as deep as when I saw it over 15 years ago. Carter’s hesitation on what to do can (and does) happen to anyone. A much more realistic story than teenagers dirt biking or sky diving for charity.

And with realistic stories comes shock value. Keep in mind, In Space, Lost Galaxy and Lightspeed Rescue were all before September 11th, so a lot more things were relaxed back then. I’m not sure if this was Lynn’s idea, but I’d like to think so. A lot of what happens in these episodes are things you’d only see on adult shows. Lost Galaxy pretty much killed off all their villains, Lightspeed Rescue had an episode where someone hijacks a bus with an actual handgun and Time Force actually showed Wes’ father being shot down by Ransik and dying from oxygen…..yes…..DYING. When are we ever going to see things like that again? Probably never.

 

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Saban Brands

   Balance Of Tones

Of course, since this is a kids’ show, they need to have their comedic moments. They can be funny as Joel hitting on Ms. Fairweather or stupid like the Neo-Saban Era and food in the face. Lynn balanced this. As Linkara stated in his review of RPM, “You need to have humor in a serious situation”. Sure, it’s not like RPM’s situation being trapped in a dome, but Lynn’s humor was laughable whether you were a kid or an adult. A very minor point, but important none the less.

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Saban Brands

Legacy

I’d like to think that after Lynn’s first tenure on the series, it affected the rest of the series all the way through the Disney era. Yeah, they weren’t exact perfection, but perfection none of the less. Because of his involvement, we had better characters, serialization, continuity, a good balance of tones and just overall better seasons. Mighty Morphin-Turbo 1.5 WISHES they were as good as the seasons that followed. Yeah, there were some clunkers in the Disney era (Mystic Force, Operation Overdrive, and Jungle Fury), but they all still had the “Lynn effect”.

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TucsonPowerZealot 

Conclusion

Even though there are some issues with the series’ now, I can’t really talk bad about him. He really is the best writer Power Rangers’ ever had. Now, that’s not to say other writers such as Jackie Marchand, Douglas Sloan and Bruce Kalish are bad, I enjoy most of their material (Sloan’s humor in Ninja Storm and Dino Thunder were great), but I feel like Lynn’s is better by a hair. He was a great writer and had an awesome writing team to back him up. Yeah, he’s got his issues an executive producer, no one’s perfect after all, but I’d rather have him on then Tzachor.

What are your thoughts? Do you think Judd Lynn is the king of Power Rangers’ writers or does someone else earn that title? Leave a comment below or Tweet your thoughts to me @TyRedBoz.

Also, if you like to throw support my way (Optional, not required), you can tip me on Digital Tip Jar. 

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Neo-Saban Power Rangers: The Worst Era We’ve Ever Had

THIS IS 100% PERSONAL OPINION AND DOESN’T REFLECT THE POWER RANGERS FANBASE OR PRODUCTION TEAM IN ANY WAY, SHAPE OR FORM

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Saban Brands

 

I first joined the Power Rangers fandom full time in 2010 after taking a break for four and a half years. Oddly enough, this was also around the time that Saban Brands re-acquired the series from the Walt Disney Company, the very people who they sold it to back in 2001 along with the rest of the Fox Kids library. Fifteen year old me was all “Yes! Saban is the savior! Disney can go fall in their castle lake!” Plus when Samurai premiered, I claimed it to be better then ANYTHING Disney made themselves.

But that was well over seven years ago. Now I’m twenty-two and I want Disney back. Seriously.

The “Neo-Saban” era (as most fans call it) has be described as the worst era Power Rangers has ever had, and I have to sadly agree with them. The show right now isn’t really that much fun to watch anymore. It feels like a chore that you need to get to, but just put it off for later. But why is that? What has made this era of Power Rangers so cringe-worthy? Even more so then the original? Well, let’s see.

Just as a side note, I’m not going to mention writing since that’s been talked about by others and saying it’s one person’s fault and blah-blah. Plus, I think we all agree that the writing is terrible, so I don’t want to repeat what’s already been said by others.

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Saban Brands

  Rushed Production

When the series was bought back by Saban in 2010, casting sides were released within a week and the show began shooting in September. This was a disaster waiting to happen. Since Nickelodeon told them that they’d be only showing 20 episodes a year out of a 40 episode season (which I bet Saban expected them to change, but didn’t), Samurai and Super Samurai was pretty much matching it’s Sentai counterpart, “Samurai Sentai Shinkenger” down to a tea, going as far as having the Red Ranger’s last name being “Shiba”, when he’s 100% American.

This has cursed every single season afterwards. The worst offender to this is MegaForce and Super MegaForce which mixed the two Sentais, “Tensou Sentai Goseiger” and “Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger” into one and gave the production team headaches.

“But wait!” you say. “Power Rangers uses footage from Japan! How in the world can the production be rushed if half the work is done for them?”

Well, this isn’t a 4Kids dub, this is an American adaptation of Japanese show. It’s a bit harder to do then just dub over characters. You have to make some tweaks to fit American audiences, figure out what the heck to do with the footage, what you’ll copy from Japan or make on your own and weave it all together. It’s gotten a bit better since then, but it’s still a problem.

 

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Saban Brands 

  Casting & Characters

Power Rangers is a series famous for having average to bad actors and actresses. Not to say that a lot of actors were completely awful. A lot of them were above average and some have gone on to start in bigger TV series. In this era though, I really can’t see much of these actors going places.

Now, I’m not saying that they’re terrible people or they shouldn’t be frowned upon when seeing them at gathering events. They could be directed to act bad or their more wooden then the bark on a tree. After all, they have to film both seasons at once to show that they’re still the same age as when the show started.

My problem is more so on the character side of things. Most of these Rangers are terrible characters. Some are jerks (Kevin, Kendall), some are more plain then vanilla ice cream (75% of the Samurai, MegaForce and Ninja Steel cast) and some are just there for “moral support” (Gosei, Zenowing, Keeper).

Plus, they don’t have any personalities…..at all. It’s just “I’m perfect! I can do so many things! Watch me do magic!”. It doesn’t make them relatable at all to the target audience watching. In this day and age, where children’s television is more progressive then it’s ever been, you need to have that. Sure, in the original Mighty Morphin series, their personalities were very two dimensional, but they were personalities nonetheless. With the way things are now, it’s just jarring and cringy to watch.

 

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Alison MacInnis

Mismanagement

Judging from this picture above, you can see what I’m going to talk about with this one.

Now yes, Power Rangers is low budget, but there are times where you look at the production history of it and it just makes your head turn on where the heck the money went for some of these episodes.

Probably the best example of mismanagement in the Neo-Saban era (and Power Rangers in general) was MegaForce and Super MegaForce. Now like I said, this caused some production staffers to go crazy, mixing two Sentais into two 20 episode seasons. Heck, even the head writer left during Super MegaForce due to the frustration of it all. The big event that was supposed to save the seasons was “The Legendary Battle” where every single Ranger up to that point would come together and fight in one massive beat down. And as reported, some past actors would come back and reprise their roles.

And then it was revealed that the actors’ invites were very last minute leading to some actors getting invited and then cancelled a week later leading to really bad press online and then being revealed that it wasn’t part of their original budget.

So where did the money for this epic 20th Anniversary celebration go? Well, as speculated, it was spent on a………………..filler episode……..involving their robot buddy exploring the city………………………because to kids, that’s more interesting then an epic Ranger battle. How exciting.

And it’s not only this episode, even the Dino Charge seasons had this problem, primarily in Dino SuperCharge, where A plots took back seat to outdated B-plots.

We really can’t blame one singular person for all this, we have to point fingers at the show staff, higher ups and broadcast network (I’ll explain in a bit).

 

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Saban Brands

Post Production

Dear lord, this is such a pet peeve of mine, especially when any TV show is in HD. These seasons probably have the worst editing jobs, effects work and musical scores I’ve seen in pretty much anything.

First of is the music. I’m sorry if you actually like him, but Noam Kaniel’s music is awful, especially when you compare it to the early rock and later orchestral scores we’ve had before. It’s very generic, barley matches the tone certain scenes have and is just repeated over and over and over. Just give us some new exciting material! Even with Youssef Guezom working with him, it’s still pretty terrible. And good luck trying to hear it. It’s pretty much turned down when ever the Rangers are blurting out phrases while fighting.

Secondly, the editing is pretty rookie level quality, like it was edited on Windows Movie Maker. They don’t even bother to try and match the Sentai footage with the American footage. Easiest way to tell? In the Sentai footage, the suits are shiny, but in the American footage, the suits are more vibrant. They couldn’t at least color correct it? Sure, in the old days, they didn’t care, but that’s cause it was harder to do back then. Now, it just looks awful.

Oh it doesn’t stop there. A lot of these edits are very rough and not seamless like ALL HD SHOWS are. Pair that up with using the wrong theme songs in the wrong seasons numerous times and there you have a YouTube edit done by a 10 year old.

But my own personal grip with post production is just the visual effects. They make Mighty Morphin’s look oscar- worthy. It looks faker then it ever has been and really just shows you how much better In Space-Wild Force’s looked by comparison. They looked real. It actually looked like lasers were being blasted, energy was flowing, people were teleporting and having the suits form on to them.

Now, it’s blatantly obvious that it’s terrible CGI and filmed behind a green screen (i.e. Victor’s “fan” costume). Sure, Sentai has the same issues, but it looks like they use better CGI effects then we do. We don’t even get legit original Zord footage anymore. It’s just terrible CGI that makes the original movie’s CGI look epic.

 

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The World Of HA

More of a Toy Commercial Then Ever

It’s no secret that Power Rangers, much like Transformers and Ninja Turtles before it, main profit drive is toys. That’s why in the show, they’ll yell out the names of their weapons, vehicles and Zords so that kids can bug their parents to get it for them. So why is this an issue if it’s always been the case?

Well, since Sentai began their collectible gimmicks trope, it really has changed the way Power Rangers is presented. Personally, for me, I don’t mind as long as it’s done right…….which it isn’t. So much screen time is spent on these collectible gimmicks and power ups that sometimes, they get more time to shine then the Rangers themselves. Now of course, they need to sell those toys, but how much do they need to cram it in our faces? Was it really necessary for Tyler to name every attack “T Rex Supercharge whatever”? I mean good lord.

Oh and the Megazord only armor suits………..use them for more then cockpit armor. Those action figures will seem useless to kids if you don’t use them while fighting.

 

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Viacom/Saban Brands

Awful Network

As I’ve stated before, Nickelodeon is without a doubt the worst network Power Rangers has ever had. And personally, I think their involved with how it’s handled.

“But Tyler, they don’t own the show! They just air it! They don’t have any control!”

Well, when a network agrees to air a show that they don’t own the rights to, but tells you how many episodes they’ll air a year affecting it’s format and (most) airings around the world, I call that involvement.

Weird airing times, little to no advertisement and long unnecessary summer hiatuses. In a world where kids are streaming 95.5% of the time, you can’t do this. Ratings suffer and kids loose interest after weeks upon weeks without anything new. But sadly, Saban hasn’t done anything to change this and it’s really depressing to know.

 

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Unknown Instagram user, saved by The Power Scoop and posted by Den Of Geek

Final Thoughts

I’ve been in this fandom for 7 years and I don’t think I’ve ever been so disappointed with Power Rangers in my life. The show that’s lasted much longer then anyone has ever thought it would and even avoided cancellation FIVE TIMES….could sink so low. Sure there’s been many times where it’s sunk low during the original Saban and Disney eras, but never to the point where it feels like a syndicated kids show on a UPN affiliate that no one watches at 7:00 on a weekday morning. It feels like there’s no pride in anyone’s work anymore and that’s really a shame. Not saying everyone working on PR is pride-less, but it just doesn’t really show.

I’m really hoping that the 25th anniversary episode (and Super Ninja Steel in general) can redeem the franchise for me, but if not, then I might just leave Power Rangers for a while.

As for what I think this will do for the franchise for the future if it keeps getting lower and lower? Well if the movie sequel isn’t happening (which probably won’t) and the 25th Anniversary fails to impress me, and MANY others, I predict three things will happen

  • The series ends by 2020. The absolute end of Power Rangers unless history repeats itself.
  • Saban partners up with Netflix and moves it there (Which you can read my thoughts on that here).
  • Power Rangers is bought out by another company.

Now, would the franchise lose public interest without a series? No, of course not. Power Rangers is seen as a nostalgic property and products such as toys, clothing, DVDs and books would still be racking in the cash. But as for new episodes, unless Saban Brands decides to drastically change their ways, I doubt it.

But am I the target demographic of the show? No, of course not. I can’t speak for the kids who are fans now and they probably don’t think about behind the scenes details like we do. Not calling them dumb or idiotic, just saying that I didn’t think about these things when I was their age.

I’m expressing my views as a long time adult fan who’s almost the same age as the property and have seen the good and the bad. But now I think Saban Brands has dropped the ball hard and if things don’t change, this fan will have to find something else to Mighty Morphin’ move to.

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Saban Brands/Power Rangers NOW

 

 

 

 

 

 

Power Rangers & Netflix: A Powerful Combination Waiting To Happen

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A Plus Opinions of YouTube

THIS IS 100% PERSONAL OPINION AND SPECULATION. THIS IS NOT OFFICIAL NEWS. PICTURES BELONG TO THEIR RIGHTFUL OWNERS AND CORPORATIONS

Power Rangers has been running on television world wide non-stop for almost 25 years. The franchise has had corporation changes three times now and has been on US networks for 8-9 years during each company’s time. For a show that’s lasted as long as this one, you’d think it would’ve moved to digital platforms by now. Has it? Well……..mostly no.

The ever rapid move to streaming services by many companies is hurting linear TV stations. Really, hardly anyone anymore doesn’t have an issue of missing their favorite show because they weren’t around at it’s scheduled time. If they miss it, it’s up on Hulu or On Demand within 24 hours. Heck, Disney Channel puts new episodes of their shows on the episode’s airdate BEFORE it’s scheduled TV time. To make a long explanation short, more people are streaming content these days rather then waiting for it to air on prime time.

So why in the world has Saban Brands not moved Power Rangers into this area yet and how would it all turn out? That’s what I’m here to discuss. Power Rangers and it’s potential new content presence on digital media. Specifically with Netflix.

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Saban Brands

Improved Quality & Episode Counts

Let’s face it. Power Rangers hasn’t been at the same peak of quality that’s it’s been since the Late Saban and Early Disney days. This could be the fault of many things such as producers, writers, higher ups or networks. We really don’t know. However, what I and many other people do know is that if it’s a Netflix series, it’s a good one.

Now, I’m not saying that Power Rangers would get “13 Reasons Why” intense or “Fuller House” funny (if you can call it that), I think that it’ll get the same treatment that “Voltron Legendary Defender” gets. Actual relatable characters, gripping stories and cool visuals.

As for Episode Counts, Netflix series usually have 13-20 episodes a season, but I think Netflix would make an acceptation to this. They could either do one 20 episode season a year like now, put both seasons in a year or sprinkle the episodes out in 4 batches of 5 at a time.

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Decider.com

Entire Series Is Available

Usually when a continuous series moves new episodes to Netflix (I.e. Arrested Development or Gossip Girl), the entire series before then is uploaded so that old and new fans can binge watch it. Power Rangers has been streaming on Netflix since 2011 and has been proven quite a hit on there. As of this post, the entire series up till Dino SuperCharge is available to watch and as expected, each season is uploaded after it’s initial broadcast run.

Having the entire series available in one place makes it easy for people to find instead of hunting and pecking for TV stations to figure out what channel and when it’s on.

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SHOUT! FACTORY/Saban Brands

DVDs

When this conversation was brought up before, someone brought up a main con to this stating that the show would be behind a paywall and not as many people would have access to it. While that is true, that doesn’t mean it still can’t be accessed outside of Netflix.

With as big as a cult show Power Rangers is, there is one way of viewing the show outside of television and streaming. DVDs are still a big market, bigger then people claim it to be, and a lot of Netflix series such as “Orange Is The New Black” and “House Of Cards” get DVD releases after the series has been on Netflix for quite some time. Power Rangers can still benefit from this. Yeah, kids may need to wait longer, but it’s better then not seeing it period or using “other methods” to view it.

 

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Bandai America

Toys, Toys, Toys

Another common comment I hear is that if the show moves to Netflix, toy sales would suffer. Remember when Voltron Legendary Defender’s toy line came out and you couldn’t find those toys ANYWHERE FOR MONTHS? It kind of mirrored Power Rangers’ issue when it was launched. Plus, you see other toy lines for other Netflix only shows, so I really don’t see a loss with this one. After all, it is about the toys right?

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Viacom

No More Of Nickelodeon’s Treatment

Let’s not kid ourselves here with this one. Nickelodeon has probably treated Power Rangers the worst out of all the networks it’s been on. Even Disney treated it better despite not really liking it. Long hiatuses, lack of reruns on main and digital channels and episode limits. Seriously, they don’t own the property, at all but can tell them how many episodes they can make a year?

Not to mention, the quality of the show itself. I know I mentioned it could be anyone involved on the production team, but I’m putting the blame mostly on the Gak Network. I seriously don’t believe that Judd Lynn would’ve approved of the way Dino SuperCharge and Ninja Steel (so far) turned out unless he was forced to. Again, I don’t know, but I’m veering off topic.

Basically, what sounds better? A two year team with 20 episodes a year with long unnecessary summer hiatuses resulting in rushed episodes or a 32-40 episode season dumped or spread out in batches where the rest of the series is avalible?

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roconi of Instagram

 “There’s Only One Chance”

With the movie’s mediocre performance and the decrease in ratings, I feel that a move to Netflix would help save the show and make it more relevant then it is. Sure, people know about it and are nostalgic for it, but it’s not relevant in the way other older properties such as “Ninja Turtles” & “Transformers” have been. Would there be some cons with the show being avalible on Netflix only? Yes, like with everything, but I feel there are more good things then bad.

What Saban Brands needs to get behind, among other things, is that it’s not 1993-1994 anymore. Traditional TV is slowly on it’s way out and more companies are jumping on board Netflix and other services to provide new content. Power Rangers is a perfect property to do that with. Netflix is bigger then any TV channel right now and if Saban Brands doesn’t make the switch and sticks with Nick after Super Ninja Steel, Power Rangers could be done and over-with for good in 2020.

So what are your thoughts on this subject? Are you for a move to Netflix? Against it? What do you think will happen eventually? Answer down below or on Twitter at @TucsonPRZealot.

Or if you’re on there yourself, tweet to Jason Bischoff, Director of Global Consumer Products for Power Rangers & Saban Brands, at @shadowpiper and ask him yourself. Trust me, I tried.

 

 

 

Power Rangers Ninja Steel Announced As The Next Power Rangers Adaptation, Will Stay On Nickelodeon Through Franchise’s 25th Anniversary

With the premiere of Power Rangers Dino Super Charge in 2 weeks (possibly 1 week if you follow me), we can expect more Power Rangers adventures after it wraps up in November. This week, it was revealed that Nickelodeon has renewed the show for two more years, which will take the show into it’s 25th Anniversary. We also found out what the next season will be called. “Power Rangers Ninja Steel”.

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Now obviously, this reveals that Saban Brands has chosen to adapt “Shuriken Sentai Ninninger”, the 2015 Sentai over the 2014 train-themed Sentai, “Ressha Sentai Tokkyuger”. A really silly idea to skip a new theme in favor of a reused theme (Which I think trains would’ve actually worked), but whatever. I can deal with it. After all, Judd Lynn is returning as Head Writer and Executive Producer, so why worry?

We actually found out about this, quite oddly. Morphin’ K on Twitter, while snooping around found out that Saban Brands had filled a trademark for “Ninja Steel”. After this was found out by fans, and “nerd” news outlets, Saban Brands put out a press release announcing the debut of Dino Super Charge, Nickelodeon’s renewal, and Ninja Steel’s premise:

Saban’s Power Rangers Ninja Steel starts deep in space, where Zircon is the reigning champion of the most popular intergalactic game show in the universe, and monsters battle to prove who is the mightiest warrior. Zircon is determined to become invincible by controlling the mythical Spirit Crystal, which contains six supernatural Ninja Power Throwing Stars. The only thing standing in his way is a new team of heroic teenage Power Rangers who possess the Spirit Crystal. The evil Zircon sends his warrior contestants down to Earth to steal the Crystal, where each epic battle against the Rangers is broadcast throughout the universe. Together, the Rangers must master their arsenal of Throwing Stars, Zords and Megazords, each made of legendary ninja steel, in order to stop this evil threat and save our planet from destruction.

There hasn’t been a logo or marketing poster released yet, since this was leaked early, but I’ll update when those come about.

What are your thoughts about Power Rangers Ninja Steel? Will you tune in? Comment below.

 

Unleash The Power!-My Ranking Of All 21 Power Rangers Seasons

Welcome my readers, and happy belated 22nd birthday Power Rangers! It’s truly amazing how long this franchise has been around. It’s changed a lot through cast changes, corporate buyouts, crew members and a plethora of merchandise. They even have a new movie coming out in two years that’ll expand the Power Rangers Universe outside of the weekly 20 minute episodes.

With (pretty much) all of the Power Rangers seasons available on DVD from SHOUT! Factory and Lionsgate as well as streaming sites like Netflix and Amazon, it’s really easy to watch the 800+ episodes and determine which seasons are good and which ones are terrible. Many people have their own opinions on which seasons are worthy and which ones should be shunned, and I’m here today to show my full ranked list of all 21 Power Rangers seasons.

“But wait”, you ask yourself. “I thought there were 22 seasons, why are you excluding one season?” Well, because our 22nd season, Dino Charge, hasn’t been completed and won’t be completed until 2016. I’ll do another post when that happens, give my thoughts on what I thought of it and Dino SuperCharge, but we’re looking at all 21 COMPLETED seasons.

With that out of the way, let’s begin!

All following photos are owned by SHOUT! Factory, Lionsgate and Saban Brands. I do not own or make money off of these photos. They are purely being used for opinion based activities.

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#21: Power Rangers Super MegaForce-February 15, 2014-November 22, 2014

This season was the season that had a lot, and I mean ALOT, of potential that was wasted. This continuation of Power Rangers MegaForce featured all 5 main MegaForce Rangers getting a new power up called “Super Mega Mode” in which they use cell phone Morphers that can turn them into past Power Rangers through “Ranger Keys”. They also get a new Megazord which also can combine with some past Zords.

If a word can describe this season it’s procrastination. Everything just seems like it was thought about at the last minute. They probably had intended to use Goseiger for another year, but they suddenly decided to throw Gokaiger in there since it was the big anniversary season in Japan. So having them upgrade to the Gokaiger suits is just dumb. Personally, I think it would’ve worked if they did it Mighty Morphin Season 2 style, but that’s for another post.

There’s also the fact that it dishonors its past by having oxymoronic “New Legendary Rangers” a.k.a. Gokaiger footage of Sentai heroes that no one has ever heard of or care about. They could of just reshot it using Rangers we’ve seen, since they do have ALL THE SUITS, but nope.

The reason that this season is the worst is the big “Legendary” Battle at the end of the season. It was a last minute act and it shows. Apparently, having past guests come back, unless they were Jayden (ugh) or someone on the writing staff (double ugh), wasn’t part of their original budget. Why? If you knew you were going to do this, why wouldn’t this have been a priority? They did get 11 cast members to attend, but they were only Saban era Rangers and none from Disney, despite the fact that some Disney era Rangers were voice actors this season. What really hurts is the battle itself. All it features is the Rangers appearing on the mountain, coming down, guest Rangers take off their helmets, say some “encouraging words”, put their helmets back on, go into battle, MEGAFORCE RANGERS HOGGING THE SPOTLIGHT, NOT EVEN SEEING ANY OF THE RETURNNES IN AMERICAN OR JAPANESE FOOTAGE and they all go home when its done. Its just, disappointing.

Overall, its the worst that the show’s ever had and is not really worth watching for a long LONG time.

20-Power Rangers Samurai Season 18

#20: Power Rangers Samurai-February 7, 2011-December 10, 2011

This was the first season done under Saban Brands and the first one to be shot in High Definition. That was the good thing about it. Since everything was in HD now, everything looked so crisp and vibrant that it became a good visual show. Plus, it was easier to see what was American footage and what was Japanese footage.

The problem with this one was in the creativity department. After Saban Brands re-acquired the series from Disney in May of 2010, casting sheets were released a week later and shooting began in September of 2010 so that it could be ready for 2011. This resulted in a lot of its episodes being “translated” from Shinkenger, which made it really bizzare and awkward to watch.

Its also a very boring season, with a lot of the characters being stiff and over acting/under acting a lot of scenes. Unlike Super MegaForce, it is worth a watch, but only if you really want too. I have and I still cringe for most of it.

21-Power Rangers Super Samurai Season 19

#19: Power Rangers Super Samurai-February 12, 2012-Decemeber 15, 2012

This continuation of the Samurai storyline showed improvement from the previous season. The episodes were better, more adaptations of the Sentai and not translations, not as cringeworthy and it kept you interested, even if you had already viewed Shinkenger. This was also the season that introduced us to the very first concrete Female Red Ranger, which excited me when I saw it.

However, like the last season, its not a good one. While this one tried to lighten the translations, it was still pretty obvious in a lot of areas where it was copying Shinkenger. They also threw Lauren under the bus in the 5 episodes she was in. It felt like a thing that they HAD to do, not that they wanted to do. Now I know WHY they had to do it, Japanese footage, but its obvious that this was a forced thing.

It did show some effort at least and its worth watching a lot more than its predecessor. Although it is still pretty bad.

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#18: Power Rangers MegaForce-February 2, 2013-December 7, 2013

Out of all the first four “Neo-Saban era” seasons, this one had to be the best. It was the 20th Anniversary season and it showed that they were willing to make this and the “Lord Voldemort” season the best they could. The first episode was probably the best one Power Rangers had had in a while. It was copying “Day Of The Dumpster”, but added its own flavor to it to make it unique and watchable. Plus, the holiday episodes that were used as clip shows (Seriously?) showed some major improvement as it was half clip show, half plot.

However, after the first episode, it all starts to fall down hill from there. Everything seemed like it was a step backwards. The episodes weren’t that interesting, they got a new toy every week, the Robo Knight stuff was bland and confusing and the major villains were killed off way too quick.

The only thing that made up for it, in a minor way, were the final two episodes. They were better cliffhanger episodes then Samurai’s final episodes were. Again, a really good effort, just not a really good outcome.

18-Power Rangers Jungle Fury Season 16

#17: Power Rangers Jungle Fury-February 18, 2008-November 3, 2008

I actually used to think Jungle Fury was the absolute worse season in history, even worse than Samurai and Super MegaForce. However, after watching the entire season for the first time, (I was out of Power Rangers when it was on) it’s a pretty decent season. It’s got good visuals, a really good theme song, some awesome character moments and was pretty solid despite being made under the 2007-2008 Writer’s Strike.

The issue I have with it, besides the three main Rangers and villains being uninteresting, is that it was over and done with too quickly. (You’re gonna hear me say that a few times.) Now this didn’t happen because it was 32 episodes long, I think this happened BECAUSE of the strike. Long story short, after the Rangers get their Jungle Master Mode, Bruce Kalish, John Tellgan and Jackie Marchand left the show to join the Writer’s Strike. As such, episodes 15-26 had to be written by non-union writers. However, according to rumor, it was believed that Judd Lynn came in under a different name to write a couple of episodes. Personally, I think they were all written by him, but that’s just because I love his work. All the strike episodes that were written sounds like episodes he would write.

The finale probably has to be the worst in the show’s history. It was just shoved in like they forgot about it and suddenly realized they needed to do it. At least with other one episode finales, the previous episode is connected to it, so it can be counted as a two parter. This one just felt loose.

17-Power Rangers Operation Overdrive Season 15

#16: Power Rangers Operation Overdrive-February 26, 2007-November 12, 2007

What? I like Operation Overdrive over Jungle Fury? Well, yes. Despite most people absolutely loathing it, I actually think it’s worth a watch, especially when compared to the first four Ne0-Saban seasons. It actually has a really cool theme to keep audiences interested, globe trotting. The Rangers are likably, say for Will, the visuals are decent and the Zords are just really, really awesome. Plus, Mack delivers one of the best lines ever in the show’s history. “I’m not human, and I’m just fine with that.”  speaking to the show’s unique viewers that it’s OK to be different.

With all the positives, the negatives sadly out weigh it. The villains are really boring, things that are foreshadowed aren’t foreshadowed well, an anniversary team up that focuses more on the Overdrive team than the veteran team and stupid technical things such as Florida all of the sudden having mountains and “telescopular” being a word even though it wasn’t.

Disney was the main suspect to this. According to Jackie Marchand, they pitched it to them as an Indiana Jones-esque series. Disney liked the idea……….and gave them a small budget and told them to use more Japanese footage. One Disney higher up even suggested to not film anything and just dub the show. It really is a shame, but they did what they could and I think it paid off in the end. (I say that loosely)

16-Power Rangers Mystic Force Season 14

#15-Power Rangers Mystic Force-February 20, 2006-November 13, 2006

Before RPM came along, this was probably the last Disney season that was watchable and likeable by a lot of people. It’s a really interesting season as it uses magic as the overall theme. The suits are really cool and streamlined with capes that add a really cool and unique touch. Plus, the Morphers are probably the best cell phone Morphers to date. They also decided to use a “Lord Of The Rings” style with this one instead of going all “Harry Potter”, which was utilized in Magiranger.

Where Mystic Force fails is in how the story is told. This is where Disney started to cut the seasons 6 episodes short and it really shows in this season. Nick, the Red Ranger, is given WAY too much focus and a lot of things are either wastes of time or just head-scratching. It’s not as obvious as the next two seasons, but it still is pretty obvious. The season’s story was just to big to tell with only 32 episodes.

6-Power Rangers Zeo Season 4

#14-Power Rangers Zeo-April 20, 1996-November 27, 1996

This was the season that diverted from the Mighty Morphin name, and brought in a handful of changes. Billy, the last original Mighty Morphin Power Ranger, stepped down to a technical advisor, Tommy finally became a Red Ranger after 3 years of popularity, brand new suits, brand new Morphers, a brand new lair and brand new villians. Plus, the theme song was altered enough to divert it enough from the “Go Go Power Rangers” theme.

That being said, this season was very flat and very boring. The villains weren’t all that interesting to me, Zedd and Rita sticking around was weird and really didn’t fit in, the theme of the season was hard to figure out and bringing Jason back as the Gold Ranger only happened because it was seen as a “ratings savior” since the ratings were slipping at the time. Don’t get me wrong, there are some really interesting episodes to watch such as the Gold Ranger arc, the “King For A Day” 2-parter and “Another Song And Dance” to name a few, but overall it was just boring to me.

5-Mighty Morphin Power Rangers-Season 3normal_box-front

#13-Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Season 3-September 2, 1995-November 27, 1995/

Mighty Morphin Alien Rangers-February 5, 1996-February 17, 1996

The final season of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was a bit of a strange one, but in a unique way. The Rangers’ get all new Ninja abilities which give them Ninja like uniforms much like in the theatrical movie that came out that summer, Bulk and Skull join the police force, showing their maturity as they’re really serious about doing their jobs, and Kimberly got an entire story arc that was about her departure and Kathrine taking her place. This was also the first season to introduce new Rangers and suits. Mighty Morphin Alien Rangers was a 10-episode mini series that featured the Alien Rangers of Aquitar, which, as reported, was a hit with the audiences.

That being said, this one is my least favorite. For starters, the season starts with a three part team up with another Saban show, “Masked Rider”, which feels like it was meant for the end of Season 2, which I classify it as, and Katherine becoming the Pink Ranger too close to the Alien Rangers arc.

The Alien Rangers mini series was dragged this season down. The Rangers turned into kids and it was really annoying, even having them go to school because time went backwards (????). They were even credited in the intro, where as the Alien Rangers WERE THE ONES WHO WERE POWER RANGERS AND DESERVED THOSE SLOTS.

3-Mighty Morphin Power Rangers-Season 2-Volume 1

#12-Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Season 2-July 21, 1994-May 20, 1995

This was the season that said, “Hey, we’re a franchise now, so let’s make it even more awesome”. And they started that way….for the first half at least. The season opened, on primetime no less, with a 3-parter that introduced a brand new villain, new grunts and brand new Zords. It was amazing. The episodes were quite good and a bit cerealized. This was also the season that Tommy traded in his Green spandex for White and became the “leader” of the team (At the same date and time this fan was born). During the second half, there was a cast change when Rocky, Adam and Aisha came in to fill Jason, Zack and Trini’s boots.

There was a big problem with this one. For starters, after Tommy left the show for a bit after retiring as the Green Ranger, Austin St. John, Walter Jones and Thuy Trang left the show from either being denied a pay raise or being fired for speaking with the union. This resulted in stand-ins, replacement voice actors and stock footage of the three for about 14 episodes (They were still seen in new footage until “Opposites Attract) until their replacements came in. It shows. The dubbers rarely sounded anything like the three and it was blatantly obvious that they actually weren’t there. The three replacement Rangers, say for Adam, were just flat and not all that interesting. This was also the season that Lord Zedd and Rita Repulsa got married since the show got complaints from parents that he was too scary….despite the fact that he was a VILLAIN. …..He still looked cool though.

13-Power Rangers Ninja Storm Season 11

#11-Power Rangers Ninja Storm-February 15, 2003-November 15, 2003

The first season done by Disney had some interesting things going for it. It was the first season to only start out with 3 Rangers instead of the mandatory 5, having 2 evil Rangers instead of just one and since it moved over to New Zealand, if featured a lot of nice locations. There is a heavy taste of comedy in this one and it’s really good. Lothor, Marah and Kapri have the best comedy to work with and Vexacus was a really cool villain that was needed to break the comedic tone.

With that said, its a little bit TOO comedic. Most of the time, they went overboard with it and it got old fast. Especially with the villains. I really didn’t find Lothor and his crew threating, say for Vexacus. Most of the time all they did was crack jokes and it made them look ridiculous. Again, Lothor is a good comedian, just not a good villain. The first half of the season was pretty weird too as they were copying Hurricanger’s plots. I do understand why since this was the first season of a long running show made by a brand new head honcho, but it was just odd. My biggest complaint is with the Sensei as a CGI guinea pig. Why was that? It looked really weird and you really didn’t take him seriously.

7-Power Rangers Turbo Season 5

#10-Power Rangers Turbo: April 19, 1997-November 24, 1997

A lot of people claim this to be one of the worse seasons in Power Rangers history. However, I disagree with that as it does something that the bottom of the barrel seasons didn’t. And that was effort. It really shows that they were trying to make it good and, for the most part, it worked out. The theme song has got to be one of the show’s best music tracks ever produced, the Background Music itself has to be the best out of the first five seasons and it has the series’ best cliffhanger finale. This was all thanks to the head writing position being given to Judd Lynn during the second half. After the major cast change, Douglas Sloan and Ann Austen left the show and Judd Lynn, being a production manager and staff writer since the beginning, was given the head writer’s position as well as a co-producer credit. After his promotion, the show’s quality picked up and it became a really good watch.

There are a handful of negatives though. For starters, the replacement of Zordon and Alpha 5 with Demetria and Alpha 6 was dumb. Dimertia spoke in riddles, Alpha 6 was a jive talking robot from Brooklyn(……?) and they were both really annoying. At least Demetria spoke like normal in the second half. Second, the villains weren’t all that impressive. Not Divatox, but her crew. They always looked weird and never did anything that made them villains. Elgar and Rygog’s costumes were apparently altered from their Carranger costumes since they were too scary looking…..I guess.

Probably the most annoying thing about it was Bulk, Skull and Lt. Stone. Lt. Stone takes over the Juice Bar after Ernie departs….because and Bulk and Skull are monkeys for the first half of the season……because. Sadly, Lt. Stone left after this season for undisclosed reasons.

This is really a 50/50 season. While the first half was head-scratching and groaning to watch, the second half, thanks to the cast change and head writer, made up for it and it’s really worth a watch.

12-Power Rangers Wild Force Season 10

#9-Power Rangers Wild Force-February 9, 2002-November 16, 2002

The last season made by Saban Entertainment after the sale of Fox Family Worldwide to Disney made this one a season to remember….for both good and bad reasons. There are many things to like about Wild Force. The suits have got to be the best animal themed suits we’ve ever had, the Zords are really cool, despite the fact that they were now CGI instead of remote controlled models, the story of the Red Ranger and the main villain was really dark, especially for a kids’ show and to top it all off, its the season that has the two best team ups in the show’s history.

The bad thing about Wild Force was, like Super MegaForce, in the writing department, just not as bad. After Time Force, Judd Lynn and Jackie Marchand left the show in response to, not only working so hard on over 200+ episodes, but Johnathan Tzachor’s decision to follow Gaoranger more closely. Princess Shayla has to be the worst mentor ever. All she does is play a damsel in distress and sing to a passive aggressive robotic deer. Some episodes make you cringe as to why they were made. Why did we need an episode about bowling?

The finale, “The End Of The Power Rangers” was very lackluster. They spent all of this time fighting Master Org…..and then defeat him in the first 10 minutes of Part 2. Speaking of, the finale was supposed to be just that. The end of the series. After Disney had purchased Fox Family Worldwide, they planned to cancel the series and air all 10 seasons as reruns on the newly formed ABC Family channel. However, thanks to Douglas Sloan and Ann Austen working for the company, they persuaded Disney that the series was still popular enough, and profitable enough, to continue and it would be cheaper to film the episodes in New Zealand. And the rest is history from that point.

If it truly ended here though, I think it would have ended on a high note. Not as high of a note as a few other seasons, but we’ll get to that later.

1-Mighty Morphin Power Rangers-Season 1 Volume 1

#8-Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Season 1-August 28, 1993-May 23, 1994

“Ahh! He’s a casual fan! Shun him!” Yes, I think the first season of Mighty Morphin is the best. However, unlike others, I actually have reasons. For starters, this began the genre of Tokusatsu in America. No one had ever seen something like this before and it was just amazing to see how it grew into an overnight phenomenon. And then…..Tommy came along and made the series explode in popularity, even beating The Oprah Winfrey Show in ratings. My favorite portion of the season were the “Zyu2” episodes. Since the show used up Zyuranger’s 50 episodes in 40, Saban contacted Toei to create new fight footage that would only be used in Power Rangers. They used the Zyu2 footage up until “Green No More” in Season 2. Not too bad for 6 teenagers who invaded Universal Studios and backed up the L.A. Freeway for 10 miles.

That being said, it hasn’t aged well at all. The decade of humor is blatantly obvious, there were some Zyuranger shots here and there that showed things that weren’t supposed to be shown, Tommy basically being ‘The Kidnapped Kid’ when they needed to work around his Japanese footage and Zack’s hip hop kido moves were completely unnecessary…and racist. (You know it was.

14-Power Rangers Dino Thunder Season 12

#7-Power Rangers Dino Thunder-February 14, 2004-November 20, 2004

This was the season that was essentially Mighty Morphin 2.0. Like everyone else, I was ecstatic for the return of Tommy Oliver as the team’s mentor. It was a really nice touch since we’ve never had a retired Power Ranger be a mentor to the team, let alone come out of retirement and wear an all new suit and color. The teenagers were actually teenagers and actually made you believe that these are things that teenagers go through. (Say for being superheroes) This season had a number of really good tribute episodes. These included “Legacy Of Power”, which celebrated the series’ 500th episode, “Lost And Found In Translation” where the three main Rangers watch an English-dubbed episode of ‘Bakaryu Sentai Abaranger’, “Fighting Spirit” in which Tommy fights all of his past Ranger forms (excluding Turbo Red) while in a coma and the 2 part team up, “Thunder Storm” where they meet the Ninja Storm Rangers in an unexpected way.

The downside to this season was in the middle of it. When Jason David Frank signed on to do this season, he made a deal with the producers to go back home while they shot 10 episodes. So how did they solve this? Evil Trent froze him in amber and when they free him, he’s stuck in his suit. That means we could only hear his voice. This made things really awkward and made you ask a lot of questions such as “How did he eat?” and “How did he use the bathroom?”

There was also the issue with the White Ranger clone. In Abaranger, the White Ranger was evil for pretty much the entire season. To work around the footage, after Trent became good, they created the White Ranger clone to explain why his Zords were still acting evil and whatnot. I found it pretty stupid and a MAJOR drag down of the show’s pacing.

It’s still worth a watch and a recommendation if you were a Mighty Morphin’ kid.

19-Power Rangers RPM Season 17

#6-Power Rangers RPM-March 7, 2009-December 26, 2009

If you want Power Rangers to be dark and gritty, don’t watch that “Power/Rangers” film. Watch this masterpiece. But first, a little behind the scenes info. Disney actually wanted to end the series after “Jungle Fury” due to lack of interest from their higher ups. However, Jetix Europe had talked them into doing one more season and Bandai was going to continue making toys whether there was a show or not. Not wanting anything to do with the series, Disney hired Eddie Guzelian as executive producer and told him, “We don’t care what you do, go nuts.”

So, if its so good, why is it here and not in the top 5? Well, there’s some simple explanations for that. (For realz). For starters, it is said at the beginning of the series, if my memory is correct, that they couldn’t go outside of the domed city because they wouldn’t be able to breath the air. However, they go outside the city many, MANY times and don’t experience this problem. I could be wrong and could be getting that from “Clash Of The Red Rangers”, the 2 part team up episode in “Power Rangers Super Samurai”, but I’m pretty sure that was intact.

There was also the issue of a change midway through the season with the Executive Producer position. Eddie Guzelian had issues with getting things done on time due to him micro-managing everything to match his vision of the show. He’d never worked on a live-action show before, let alone a Power Rangers show and this made it difficult for him. He made a promise to the higher ups that he would get back on schedule. He did follow up on that promise…….and then Disney fired him. As such, Judd Lynn was brought back to fill in the role as the Executive Producer. This lead to some interesting and weird things like the episode “And Action!” which was a behind the scenes episode with everyone in character. This probably wasn’t going to be a thing as it was seen as a cover up episode so that he could play catch up.

There was also the fact that the Andros and Astronema storyline was flat out copied for the Dillon and Tenaya storyline. It was pretty much the same thing, with some minor differences, to the point where Tenaya’s cybernetic implants were in the same place as Astronema’s were. There is speculation that this WAS Eddie Guzelian’s plan for the two characters, but that can ‘t be true since all of his plans were scrapped when Judd Lynn came on board.

With those problems though, it didn’t really change the tone or pace of the season. Its got a lot of things Power Rangers hasn’t really done before. Character flashback episodes, showing people die, a good character that did something bad (Not saying, just watch it for yourself) and some really good forth wall comedy. Its really worth a watch and will have you on the edge of your seat.

15-Power Rangers SPD Season 13

#5-Power Ranger S.P.D.-February 5, 2005-November 14, 2005

I feel like every company that has owned Power Rangers in the past had their own “Mighty Morphin” season of popularity. Of course, Saban Entertainment had “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers”, Saban Brands had “Power Ranger Samurai” and “Power Rangers Super Samurai” and Disney had “Power Rangers S.P.D.” This season took Power Rangers’ production values to the next level by hiring Hollywood producer and visual artist, Greg Aronowitz. It shows. S.P.D is a really gorgeous looking season for its time. It’s got great costumes, beautiful sets, awesome props and some really cool animatronics. It made it feel like it WAS actually being filmed in 2025 instead of pretending like it was ala Back To The Future style. The theme song was the best in the show’s history, thanks to the return of Ron Wasserman, the man responsible for all the music from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers-Power Rangers In Space. It’s basically used as the soundtrack for the whole show and it blends in perfectly.

With SPD’s positives being in the production value and overall cast, it’s negatives came in the producer’s chair. This was Bruce Kalish’s first season as Head Writer and Executive Producer since Ann Austen and Douglas Sloan left the show since Disney wanted to start with something fresh to gain new audiences. He started near the end of Dino Thunder, as a staff writer and stayed on till Jungle Fury. His decisions on Power Rangers were mostly moronic and confusing. He’s the one responsible for the back explosions, turning the Omega Ranger into a ball of light and deciding to copy the Dekaranger episodes plot for plot, which lead the cast to a reset button installed and pressed after every episode.

The villains weren’t that interesting. Grumm looks scary, but spoke in gibberish. Broodwing was sly, but just was a standard black market criminal and Mora/Morgana was pretty pointless seeing how they didn’t do much with her anyway.

But to be perfectly honest, these negatives can be forgiven. It still is a REALLY awesome season filled with likeable, actable characters, really good visuals and a story that ends as cleanly as it began.

10-Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue Season 8

#4-Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue-February 12, 2000-November 18, 2000

This was the season that got me into Power Rangers when I was 6 years old and it’s something of an underrated gem. This was the first season that recruited actual rescue heroes to become Power Rangers. Red Ranger Carter Grayson was a firefighter, Blue Ranger Chad Lee was a swimmer, Green Ranger Joel Rawings was a pilot, Yellow Ranger Kelsey Winslow was a mountain climber and Pink Ranger Dana Mitchell, who was daughter to the Captain who recruited them, was a paramedic. It was a good step by the production team adapt the Sentai, GoGoV closely because it showed the Rangers doing something else besides fighting monsters. They were rescuing and helping people whether it involved a monster attack or not. This is something a lot of Ranger teams should do all the time instead of fighting the monster and forming the Megazord.

This season was also the first one to include the very first American created Power Ranger. GoGoV, hence the name, didn’t have a sixth Ranger nor did they have a Phantom Ranger or Magna Defender like character to fill the sixth Ranger position with, so they decided to create the Titanium Ranger. He looked really cool and had an awesome weapon that transformed from an axe to a gun. This would be repeated again 8 years later in Jungle Fury as they created the 3 Spirit Rangers.

The issue with this one, once again, are the villains. The only two who really did anything besides stand around the Skull Cavern were Diabolico and Olympus. The other villains were just boring and uninteresting. Vypra was the worst since she overacted and drove around……..in a go-cart………with wings…….I still think that’s the stupidest villain vehicle ever.

Still though, the season is really fun to watch and I’d highly recommend it. Especially if you love giant flying trains with Gatling blasters, freeze missiles and turbine lasers. (Seriously, that’s like the best thing ever!)

9-Power Rangers Lost Galaxy Season 7

#3-Power Rangers Lost Galaxy-February 6, 1999-December 18, 1999

Lost Galaxy is an amazing season that most seem to view as dry and boring, however I disagree. It’s a really fun season that has everything you love and more if you are a Star Trek fan (Talking to you Eric!). The sets are some of the show’s best from the sleekness and architecture of Terra Venture to the rocky and insect invaded look of the Scorpion Stinger. The villains were really, really cool in both looks and character traits and the finale has to be one of the best in the show’s history.

This season, unfortunately had a lot of negatives. The big issue with the season are the arcs. They made very little sense and were sometimes dragged out to long. For example, The Lights Of Orion/Magna Defender arc was a nightmare to make. Production was behind schedule, scripts were handed out the day they shot them and one episode wasn’t even finished a few days before its airdate. The Lost Galaxy saga was also confusing as it was trying to explain why the season was called “Lost Galaxy”. It was really boring and, in my mind, not really needed.

This was also the first season to have a Ranger die in the line of duty. Valerie Vernon, Kendrix’s actress was diagnosed with leukemia and had to leave to undergo treatment. So how do they write her off? By………killing her. No…..seriously, they actually showed her getting killed and going to heaven. I really don’t understand why they would do that knowing she could’ve died from the cancer. Luckily, her treatments were successful and she was able to comeback in the season’s final scene……by magic……because. Her replacement during that time was, non other than Karone.

It’s a really good season to watch, especially if you’re a Star Trek fan and want to see Power Rangers’ take on it.

8-Power Rangers In Space Season 6

#2-Power Rangers In Space-February 6, 1998-November 21, 1998

And if Lost Galaxy is Power Rangers’ Star Trek, then In Space is Power Rangers’ Star Wars. Due to the behind the scenes tumult of Turbo, the production team got a much smaller budget and was looking to rely on the Sentai footage for it. When they saw clips of the Sentai taking place in space and fighting aliens with spaceship Megazords, they thought they were already set as this was an all out space war series.

Except……….it wasn’t. Megaranger was actually a video game and technology series that took place on Earth. The only thing space-themed about it were the Megazords. And even then, they only went up to space to form them. After learning about this, the production team came up with the most logical decision……

“WHO THE HECK CARES? LET’S MAKE A SPACE WAR SERIES THAT PULLS OUT ALL THE STOPS!” In Space is a great blend of episodes, characters, and story that keeps audiences glued down to their seats. This was also the season that drove Power Rangers in a dark direction. Storylines such as Karone’s kidnapping, Zhane being on medical support, the realization of Karone being Astronema, her cybernetic change and the motives of the Physco Rangers were storylines that Power Rangers never had done before. (One was actually copied coincidentally in another “final” season) It all ends with a big battle royale across the universe as all the villains attack multiple plants at once so that Earth is free range for attack. Zordon tragically dies and sends out a wave of energy that turns the villains into sand and turns the human like villains good.

There’s just one thing that season has that puts it here and not at #1. The first half was genertic. Aside from the premiere, and a handful of episodes, it was just funky. Probably the reason why is because of the infamous team up with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles…..the Next Mutation versions. Now I would actually like to see this happen as a comic book or a movie, not as a way to promote your other show that only lasted 26 episodes (with two of them being clip shows). It’s a really awful episode and just worth skipping, but that’s for another day.

Overall though, this season is a must watch. You might want to watch Mighty Morphin-Turbo first before this one. It would be odd to watch this first and not know what events they’re talking about unless you’ve seen those events prior.

11-Power Rangers Time Force Season 9

#1-Power Rangers Time Force-February 3, 2001-November 17, 2001

I love this season. No, seriously. I REALLY LOVE this season. Mainly, just because of how mature it is. This was the season that got me excited as a child. I couldn’t miss an episode and be upset if I did. I even remember watching the finale promos and being really hyped to watch those final three episodes.

Time Force IS the season to watch if you want to see Power Rangers at a mature level. The Red Ranger, Wes, is a rich kid that grows into a real hero, the Pink Ranger, Jen, is the leader out for revenge, the Blue Ranger, Lucas, is a former race car driver with regret, the Yellow Ranger, Katie, is a strong independent women who has fears of her family and desires to go home and the Green Ranger, Trip, is an alien who is misunderstood. There’s also the Quantum Ranger, Eric, who is the polar opposite of Wes who has his own motives and goals.

All three villains, Ransik, Nadira and Frax all have backstories and changes that make you feel sorry for them. Ransik was born a mutant and swears vengeance on humanity for drowning him out, Frax is a robot who was once a human who was nearly killed by his boss whom he gave medicine to take care of his deformities and Nadira is Ransik’s daughter who follows in her father’s footsteps at first, but as the season goes on (not really implied or shown but I could see it), she begins to realize that it’s wrong to hate and that everyone should love one another.

The overlying theme of the series is destiny and it really showcases it well. Mainly with Wes, who’s father chose his destiny for him, but then decided to chose his own path which his father is really proud off. Eric is the same way, learning over time that power isn’t everything and that you need to be loyal to your teammates, even if you don’t like them.

This was the season that got away with a lot of things, and I mean ALOT. Ransik giving a terrorist like speech, Jen’s former partner putting a riffle on her back, Ransik invading a corporate building, WES’ FATHER BREATHING FOR OXYGEN AND DIEING and a brutal final battle were all things Power Rangers seasons had never done before of after it. So much so that after 9/11, the first 30 episodes had to be tweaked as to make it not as dark and mature as it was….even though after these tweaks, it still was pretty dark and mature.

The finale is the best in the show’s history as it tells the story slowly and perfectly. It’s much like Green With Evil, but better as this one told its story in 3 parts instead of 5. Everyone’s problems are addressed, characters advance, the battles are gruesome and Ransik, thanks to his daughter surrenders peacefully to the Rangers. After this action, he’s jailed instead of getting the Han Solo treatment as stated in the first episode.

This is the season I’d happily rewatch from start to finish over and over again. The story’s really good, the acting is really good and we’ll probably see nothing like it again (Not to mention that this cast has had more roles after Power Rangers then anyone else, rather then Keith Robinson from Lightspeed Rescue.) and there WILL be moments that will make you misty. Trust me, get the tissues. I really recommend it even if you’re not a Power Rangers fan. Trust me, you’ll like it a lot more than Mighty Morphin.

Well, that’s my ranked list. What do you guys think? What’s your favorite and least favorite season? Leave your comments below or on my Twitter, @TucsonPRZealot.

Power Rangers Dino Charge Return Moved Up From August 29th To August 22nd

  
Yesterday, a tweet made by long time Power Rangers TV listings guy, BurgundyRanger, revealed something interesting……and a bit confusing.

While I’m happy that Dino Charge will be returning a bit earlier, I’m baffled at this. Why was this pushed up a week early? Number of episodes left? Making up for lost time? Early airings on Cartoon Network Latin America? (Most likely) Who knows? 

Are you happy to get Dino Charge back early? Let me know. 

 

Power Rangers PEZ Despensers On The Way In 2016

   

Discovered by The Fonz on Rangerboard, it looks like we’ll be getting Power Rangers PEZ Despensers in 2016. 

The three featured are the Red, Black and Pink Mighty Morphin Rangers. Nothing is confirmed about the other 3 (or 4) yet, but I highly doubt they would leave them out.

As Bruno of MMPRtoys would say, “I think I need that!” 

Will you be picking these up to add to you Power Rangers or PEZ collection? Let me know below.

Gosei Sentai Dairanger To Be Released By SHOUT! Factory

  At this weekend’s San Diego Comic Con, SHOUT! Factory’s head producer, Brian Ward announced at a panel that the Sentai following “Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger” titled “Gosei Sentai Dairanger” will be officially released on DVD in North America by the end of the year. 

For those not in the know, Gosei Sentai Dairanger was used as the main source of footage for the second season of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. It was however limited to only using the Zords and the KibaRanger (White Ranger) suit while keeping the same suits, weapons and villains to keep the show’s identity. The Dairanger suits were omitted in Power Rangers until Super MegaForce when they were introduced as oxymoronic “New Legendary Ranger Powers”

To see the announcement from Brian Ward himself, check out this RangerCrew video.