Power Rangers

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by SG-17, Aug 7, 2010.

  1. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2007
    Hey Christopher. Might I interest you in some Kamen Rider series?

    Kamen Rider Kabuto's a 2006 series.


    [YT]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NizRk1gvygQ[/YT]


    It has some flaws but its basically the last Kamen Rider series to be part Japanese soap opera with scifi elements in it.

    In 2007 Kamen Rider started leaning towards being more like a sentai but still aiming towards an slightly older teen demographic
     
  2. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    My reviews for From Deep in the Shadows and Truth Discovered.

    From Deep in the Shadows/Truth Discovered

    As I mentioned earlier, these episodes - along with Ryan's Destiny, Curse of the Cobra, Strength of the Sun, and The Cobra Strikes - had previously constituted the bulk of my Lightspeed Rescue homeownership (I had seen other episodes as well, but these 6 were the most pivotal in terms of the season's overall storyline),and, in rewatching them, I found even more reasons to enjoy them than before.

    This hadn't really occurred to me in previous viewings for some reason, but there's a very strong symmetry between these episodes - as well as the Titanium arc in general - and the Andros/Astronema (Karone) storyline from PRiS, particularly the episodes Never Stop Searching, Flashes of Darkonda, and The Secret of the Locket.

    The parallels are particularly strong in Truth Discovered, which not only does a great job of continuing the events of From Deep in the Shadows (which has the kind of dramatic action storytelling that you'd find in more mainstream fare) but also offers its own compelling story that could've very easily functioned on its own without the typical franchise formula staples that were incorporated into it.

    I also really liked the individual scenes between Dana and Captain Mitchell in both episodes, particularly their scene in Truth Discovered where she tells him he could've told her the truth about Ryan's fate (more on that in a second), which was a nice callback of sorts to their conversation at the conclusion of A Matter of Trust.

    There are a couple of logic flaws in the episodes (namely why Dana wouldn't have remembered the truth of events even though she was clearly old enough to, and how/why Diabolico was free of imprisonment) and a rather glaring editing goof (Ryan clearly has the Titanium Morpher on his wrist in the episode's final scene of Truth Discovered despite having taken it off in the previous scene), but, overall, they're both really good episodes that help to kickstart what I think is one of the franchise's better multi-part story arcs and is certainly one of the best arcs of Lightspeed Rescue as a whole.
     
  3. Takeru

    Takeru Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Sep 6, 2007
    Kamen Rider doesn't have an older demographic than sentai, both are made for 5 year olds.
     
  4. Chris3123

    Chris3123 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Pensacola, FL
    RangerCrew's AF Day prank: Power Rangers Energy Chasers!

    RangerCrew Blog
     
  5. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    West Haven, UT, USA
    My next two Lightspeed Rescue reviews:

    Ryan's Destiny
    Despite having previously said that the Titanium Ranger arc made up the bulk of my previous experience with the season, it turns out that Ryan's Destiny is an episode that I actually hadn't seen before.

    The first thing that came to mind as I was watching the episode is how very similar it is to the PRiS episodes Astronema Thinks Twice and Zhane's Destiny and to the PRNS episode Return of Thunder, Part 4 in its structure and storyline.

    This episode continued a motif that has been present since A Matter of Trust by having civilians play a key role in the plot of the episode, which, incidentally, is something that I find myself rather enjoying because it gives the season a unique flavor. I also really liked that it was the fact that he'd unwittingly put a couple of kids - who clearly reminded him of himself and Dana - in danger that caused Ryan to change his mind about leaving Mariner Bay and embrace being the Titanium Ranger and helping to fight against Diabolico.

    Speaking of Diabolico, I really liked the motif of him having to prove himself to Bansheera because it added a new dynamic to his character and a sense of urgency and 'weight' to his actions.

    Ryan's fight with Diabolico's 3 monsters (whose names I can't remember right now) was rather nice, although I would've liked to have seen him bust out the Titanium Laser instead of just simply knocking them around, as it would've made their retreat seem a tad more understandable.

    Diabolico cursing Ryan in his sleep with the cobra tattoo made for a rather neat denouement to the episode, and a nice setup for Curse of the Cobra, and also helped to reiterate the idea that he and his fellow demons are in fact supernatural beings (as we really haven't seen a whole lot of that per se so far).

    Curse of the Cobra
    I know I had previously seen this episode, but it turns out that my memory of it was rather spotty, so rewatching it was a nice 'refresher'.

    This episode was basically a reinterpretation of the PRiS episode The Silver Secret, with a tiny bit of influence from Dark Specter's Revenge tossed in for good measure, and made for a nice 'escalation' in terms of Diabolico and Co.'s fight against the Rangers.

    I was really caught off guard by Carter almost blowing himself up in order to take out one of Diabolico's trio of monsters, but have to give the writers props for going there, especially since it helped to enhance the idea that Diabolico's curse really is a threat to Ryan's life rather than the show simply paying lip service to that idea, which is something I rather appreciated.

    I really liked the ending scene with Carter, Ryan, and Captain Mitchell, especially with Carter confessing that he'd seen the tattoo on Ryan's back earlier in the episode. The conversation with Mitchell forbidding Ryan from morphing put me in mind of the relationship between Scott and Colonel Truman in RPM, which is kind of neat given how much I enjoy that season.

    I'm not sure that the Megazord fight was really needed per se, but did like it, especially since we got to see the Lightspeed Megazord and Supertrain Megazord fight side-by-side.

    This one has become my favorite of the Titanium Ranger episodes so far, and is one of the stronger 'sixth Ranger focus episodes' we've seen from the franchise so far.
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Mar 15, 2001
    I don't get it. What's funny about this, as opposed to merely deceptive?
     
  7. Stephen!

    Stephen! Captain Captain

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    And most of it being obviously unlikely. Having two toy lines competing against each other. The rarity of any show having two series running simultaneously. Particularly with Saban's reputation for being cheap. Running a new season on Vortexx would probably violate the agreement with Nickelodeon etc.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Mar 15, 2001
    I dunno... consider Star Trek, Law & Order, CSI, NCIS, Stargate, Once Upon a Time, not to mention sitcoms like The Andy Griffith Show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and Happy Days that spawned multiple simultaneous spinoffs. Successful franchises often have more than one series on the air at the same time. Indeed, Saban's Masked Rider was treated as a spinoff set in the Power Rangers universe and ran simultaneously with MMPR season 3. Not to mention Saban's Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation, which had a crossover with Power Rangers in Space.

    So if the franchise were still as big as it was back then, having two parallel series wouldn't sound that unlikely. But I don't think it's anywhere near the phenomenon it once was.

    Anyway, there's nothing wrong with an April Fool's gag being unlikely. It should be unlikely, something that makes you go "Wait, that can't be right, is the world really that crazy?" until you remember what day it is and get the joke, at which point you're amused by how silly it is. But this isn't absurd or funny enough to work as an April Fool's gag. It's just deceptive.
     
  9. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    My next batch of Lightspeed reviews.

    Strength of the Sun
    I hadn't really realized this until I watched this episode, but Ryan is one of the most strongly characterized Sixth Rangers in the franchise (although his overall storyline doesn't even come close to dethroning Merrick's as the absolute best in the show), and this episode is one of the key reasons why.

    I really liked that he felt so strongly about helping protect Mariner Bay that he was willing to basically kill himself - literally - in order to help out, especially once it became apparent that his friends were on the verge of losing their own lives.

    I really like Diabolico; he reminds me a great deal of Prince Gasket, Trakeena, and Imperious, a combination that actually makes him a rather formidable - and underrated - primary antagonist for the Rangers, and I rather enjoyed his machinations in terms of plotting to kill Impus (I would've liked to have seen him try, only for Bansheera's magic or something else to stop him rather than him simply backing off when Vypra and the others approached).

    One of the things that I enjoyed most about Lost Galaxy (and which was largely absent in Time Force) was the proliferation of recurring minor antagonists, and so it was nice to see the motif return for the Titanium Ranger arc. Thunderon and Falkar don't have the most gregarious of personalities, but I did like that they managed to offer the Rangers a rather formidable challenge before being ultimately defeated by the Max Solarzord.

    I also liked that Diabolico spoiled the Rangers' victory by revealing that Demoknight, Thunderon, and Falkar had survived in crystalline form.

    The denouement with Ryan and Captain Mitchell was also great, and a rather nice callback to the final scene of A Matter of Trust between Dana and Captain Mitchell.

    The Cobra Strikes
    Because I had seen so little of Lightspeed Rescue overall, I didn't realize just how serialized the season truly was, but I have to say that, so far, it's been the most serialized of the Saban Entertainment seasons (even surpassing Lost Galaxy in that regard), which is rather neat.

    I really enjoyed the numerous carry-overs from previous episodes that manifested themselves in this episode, but one in particular stood out for me: Ryan realizing that Diabolico had shown him where he needed to go in order to break the Cobra curse back in Ryan's Destiny when he transported him there in his dreams and put the Curse on him in the first place.

    Ryan's fight with the Cobra monster was rather neat, and I liked the way he used his surroundings to help him prevail.

    Ms. Fairweather is fast becoming one of my favorite 'Ranger helper' characters (the people who make it possible for the Rangers to do what they do), and is really starting to remind me a lot of Doctor K (albeit without K's psychological issues). Monica Louwrens does a really great job of making the character more than just the 'tech wizard', and I love the way she sort of casually mentioned the Battle Boosters (which I find to be rather cool).

    I really liked that Diabolico didn't hesitate to take on the Rangers himself once they'd defeated his Troika monster, although it was kind of obvious from the very beginning that he wasn't going to emerge victorious even as he was kicking the royal crap out of both the Lightspeed Megazord and Max Solarzord.

    I thought the Rangers' little victory party was a nice touch, especially since it was ruined by Bansheera showing up and introducing herself and her cocooned son Impus. It made for a pretty epic 'buzzkill' and a great way to end the episode (I especially liked Carter's reaction - "It's a drill, right?" - and Mitchell's response - "We don't have drills").

    Olympius Ascends
    Sorry Prince Gasket, but you're on the verge of being bumped out of my Top 10 Favorite PR Villains (primary only) by the awesomeness that is Prince Olympius.

    Olympius Ascends had everything you could ask for in a character introduction/'turning point' episode, and then some. You had internal villain conflict (Vypra and Loki's sarcasm and false pandering countered with Jinxer's fawning servitude), rather brilliant strategic planning (Olympius using the forms of the captured Rangers to infiltrate the Aquabase), great interplay between the Rangers, and Carter being Carter (throwing himself and Olympius into the water).

    Going back to Prince Olympius, I really like him, as I alluded to in opening this review. I love the character design, voice acting, and the way he briefly mopped the floor with the Rangers before having to beat a hasty and strategic retreat. I also liked the way the writers tossed in a tiny bit of foreshadowing by having him mention that he plans to give his mother her full bodily form once again.

    ***

    I've been really enjoying Lightspeed Rescue so far, and can't wait to see where things go (especially since the only 3 episodes I've seen going forward are the Trakeena's Revenge 2-parter and Sorcerer of the Sands).

    Speaking of Trakeena's Revenge, I know it's panned by a lot of PR fans as being rather poorly done, but I think I've found an episode placement for it that could go a long way towards making most of those complaints irrelevant and obsolete (we'll see for sure once I get to it again).
     
  10. Takeru

    Takeru Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Sep 6, 2007
    It would be unlikely because they depend on selling merchandise, having two new series at the same time would hurt both. It works if you have a very different series like Masked Rider or Turtles but two PR series would have very similar toylines, parents wouldn't buy two sets of action figures, morphemes, megazords etc. the kids would be forced to choose. I can't see Bandai being very happy with that.
     
  11. Mark_Nguyen

    Mark_Nguyen Commodore Commodore

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    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta
    Indeed, which is why Bandai doesn't do it either. To stretch out their toylines though, they do a lot of crossovers, cameos and followup movies to keep each entry into the franchise in the public consciousness longer than the year each one is center stage, thus (hopefully) selling more merchandise along the way.

    At present, I think that each Sentai team first cameos in their predecessor's teamup movies, has a short theatrical special somewhere in their run, then a teamup movie with the previous year's team close to the series finale (also introducing their successors), and a final standalone theatrical release a few months later. Sometimes, they also do a bigger crossover event with Kamen Rider and / or some other franchise, like the recent one that rolled Sentai, KR and Space Sherrif Gavan into one release.

    After that, the principal actors can hope to be involved in subsequent anniversary specials. This of course is somewhat dependent on how popular their show was in the first place... As much as I liked GoBusters, I don't see them showing up much in the future. Heck, they seem practically marginalized in their own crossover movie with Kyoryuger, almost taking a backseat to the other dinosaur sentai. Poor guys. :(

    Mark
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    A number of Sentai actors seem to get opportunities to return in different roles in later seasons. For instance, at least three regular or semiregular Jetman cast members had recurring roles two years later in Dairanger, and one of the Dairangers and his identical twin played twin supporting characters in the following year's Kakuranger.
     
  13. Mark_Nguyen

    Mark_Nguyen Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta
    And then there's the original JDF of the Sentai world, Kenji Ouba. He played Battle Kenya in Battle Fever J, Denji Blue in Denjiman the following year (a completely different character), and after that he was the eponymous Space Sheriff Gavan, which was partof the Sentai universe (ish). And before all that, he was a suit actor or guest star as far back as the original Sentai show Goranger.

    This resulted in frequent cameos in Sentai following that, culminating in one of the Gokaiger movies where both his Sentai characters AND Gavan got to meet up in person - and of course none of them saw the resemblance. :P

    http://powerrangers.wikia.com/wiki/Kenji_Ohba

    Mark
     
  14. Stephen!

    Stephen! Captain Captain

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    Judd Lynn is apparently returning as executive producer.

    http://news.tokunation.com/2014/04/...-judd-lynn-returning-executive-producer-16767

     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Mar 15, 2001
    On the one hand, I'm encouraged by this news, since Judd Lynn was responsible for most of the best years of the franchise. On the other hand, I'm wary, since the last time he came back -- replacing Eddie Guzelian as the showrunner for RPM -- all he really managed to do was copy his past glories, giving Tenaya-7 an arc that was essentially identical to Astronema's in PRiS.

    Well, either way, it's bound to be better than the shallowness of the writing on the past few seasons.
     
  16. Stephen!

    Stephen! Captain Captain

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    Another (higher quality) scan of Diesel Oh

    [​IMG]
     
  17. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    A Face from the Past
    I mentioned this earlier, but I've really been enjoying the recurring motif of supporting characters and/or civilians having a large part to play in the stories of this season, which sets it apart from other seasons in the franchise in a rather unique way and makes it feel very much like a 'mainstream' dramatic series, and it was nice to see said motif return for this episode, especially since it gave us some nice character development in the process.

    I've really been enjoying the role that Ron Rogge's Captain Mitchell plays in the season; it's very similar to the role that Colonel Truman has in RPM, but with Mitchell being a little more 'open' and interactive with the Lightspeed Rangers than Truman was with his son's team.

    Carter not wanting to take a day off from training reminded me very much of what happened with Jayden in Day Off, with the added bonus that it led directly to the big discovery of the episode, which is that Mitchell was the firefighter who saved him when he was a child.

    Speaking of said discovery, I really liked the way that Carter put the pieces together and sussed it out.

    On the villains side of the coin, I continue to really enjoy Olympius' character, and love that there's continued tension between him, Vypra, and Loki.

    The Queen's Return
    This episode reminded me very much of The Master's Last Stand from Wild Force, both in terms of its story and its structure, with both episodes featuring a lot of individual Ranger action interspersed with some pretty important story advancement.

    The continued tension between Olympius, Vypra, and Loki continues to delight me, although I do think Olympius gave in a bit too easily after Loki ordered him around. The plus of that is that it let Vypra and Loki be the ones solely responsible for the state that Bansheera ends up in, making it all that much more easy for Olympius to assert himself by being the one to try and fix what their incompetence - and the Rangers' interference - wrought.

    I really enjoyed Ryan's role in this episode; I thought it was great that not only was he able to provide insight into what Olympius and Co. were planning to do, but that he was also able to ruin Bansheera's return by prematurely stopping the ceremony. It also made perfect sense that he'd want to go off on his own to figure out a way to stop her and the other demons once and for all, allowing him to be temporarily written out of storylines while also keeping the door open for his return later on.

    It would've been interesting to see Bansheera in all of her fully corporeal glory, but I actually like her deformed appearance design-wise, and would be interested in knowing whether or not it was original or if it came from the season's Sentai counterpart.

    The Omega Project
    Traditionally, episodes that introduce brand-new Zord sets have been somewhat hit-or-miss quality-wise; sometimes they're really good, and sometimes they fall totally flat and end up being a complete mess.

    Thankfully, The Omega Project qualifies as a success, because it would've sucked to see an otherwise awesome episode dragged down by a crappy Zord rollout.

    Since, as noted twice already, I've been really enjoying the season's motif of making supporting characters and/or civilians an integral part of the storytelling, I really liked Simon's role in this episode, especially since it took some quick thinking on his part to get first Joel and then Ms. Fairweather to pay attention to him and the information he'd uncovered. I also really enjoyed the twist they put on the continuing saga of Joel's interest in Ms. F by having Simon 'one-up' him by asking her to go out with him as opposed to Joel.

    I really like the Omega Zords, design-wise, and am glad to finally see them introduced in the show itself after having been present in the end credits since the season started (which was kind of an interesting choice, IMO). I also liked that we got to see them used individually before circumstances forced the Rangers to initiate Megazord mode.

    Going back to Joel once again striking out with Ms. Fairweather and getting one-upped by Simon, it not only made for some nice humor, but also helps lead rather nicely into his behavior in Trakeena's Revenge.

    Trakeena's Revenge, Parts 1 and 2
    This episode has been largely panned by fans as being extremely poor, but, as with Samurai's Clash of the Red Rangers, I honestly think it's a team-up special whose quality is entirely dependent on when and how it's viewed within the larger framework of the season's ongoing story arc.

    I also think it holds up quite well in spite of the behind-the-scenes chaos that plagued its production, especially since it gives us our first real chance to see the Omega Megazord in action, provides some nice opportunity for Olympius to assert himself, gives Joel a chance to be the charming, charismatic 'ladies man' he fancies himself as, and continues the motif of civilians and/or supporting characters playing a crucial role in driving storylines forward.

    Carter's bonding with Heather throughout the 2-parter reminded me a lot of the way that Ryan's encounter with the two kids he ran into in Ryan's Destiny ended up driving that story forward, and made for some rather fun scenes, although I do have to question the wisdom of telling her to pull the fire alarm in P2 in order to evacuate the building where Triskull and Trakeena were conducting their experiments to restore her powers.

    I do wish we'd seen a little bit more setup for Trakeena and the Galaxy Rangers' involvement in the story, as well as more of an explanation as to how and why they and the Lightspeed Rangers were aware of one another, but that's really only a minor nitpick.

    I do find myself wondering why Olympius' voice was so different throughout the episode in comparison to the rest of his prior appearances, but that's really neither here nor there, although it did make me appreciate that the new actress they cast as Trakeena at least tried to approximate Amy Miller's voice for the role more than I probably would've otherwise.

    All in all, I think this two-parter succeeded in doing what it was trying to do, which was give us a story that allowed the Lightspeed and Galaxy Rangers to team up while also somewhat driving the storyline of Lightspeed Rescue forward and continuing its unique motifs and style of storytelling, even if there were some behind-the-scenes wrinkles associated with its production and even if it was ultimately aired entirely out of sequence, thus contributing to a poor fandom opinion of it.
     
  18. Sketcher

    Sketcher Commander Red Shirt

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    Aug 31, 2003
    I find it interesting that you seem to be enjoying Lightspeed so much. I remember utterly loathing it in its initial run. I was also pretty off by the return to Earth-based stories after In Space and Lost Galaxy. For some reason I thought they'd continue on other planets for every consecutive series. Oh to be 12 again. I also hated the idea of man-made powers. Again. 12.

    But now that I'm older, those concepts have softened by logic and another thirteen years of Ranger stories. But what I remember disliking most about Lightspeed were the characters. They just seemed to be so bland, especially Carter, compared to other Red Rangers like Leo or Tommy, who had more charisma and a richer backstory.
     
  19. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    To each their own.

    Lightspeed Rescue has, so far, been reminding me a lot of RPM, minus the dystopian tone. I've also been seeing a lot of similarities to Lost Galaxy, albeit without the Science Fiction trappings of that season.

    I also see a lot of 'mainstream' dramatic trappings present in the season that make it somewhat unique in terms of the franchise and the tropes and conventions typically alssociated with it.
     
  20. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Well...

    http://powerrangers.wikia.com/wiki/Grand_Witch_Grandiene

    I'm guessing that by "deformed appearance" you mean her half-emerged cocoon/statue form, and that aborted emergence into reality is based directly on the GoGoV version, judging from the Wiki.

    I figure that all the footage of the villains in their lair, other than close-ups of Vypra, comes from GoGoV directly.



    I was about two decades older than that at the time, but I loved the idea of the Rangers working for a human organization and having publicly known identities. It was a refreshing change of approach and one I wish they'd used more often. (As I mused before, I wonder how differently PR would've turned out if they'd started with Jetman instead of Zyuranger.)
     

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