I am a gigantic fan of the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers; I have been since the early ’90s. I stopped watching the show after the 1995 movie and it wasn’t until almost 20 years later that I found out the series hadn’t ended with the movie – nor had the fandom. The nostalgia for the Power Rangers has only gotten bigger and stronger to the point that there are tons of new merchandise to choose from, new comics and spin-offs, and… a new movie.
The new Power Rangers’ movie trailer came out yesterday, and it gives a lot to think about for all fans – new and old.
We start off with a quick view of the city of Angel Grove that switches to quick glimpses of our heroes. The voiceover, of either Kimberly or Trini, lets viewers know that they don’t know each other at all. We learn that they’re all “screw ups” which ties in with the bits we’ve gathered from past trailers. They are all apparently the type to go to detention and get in trouble quite often. The trailer quickly switches to the group at what appears to be a remote area. There’s nothing but cliffs, rocks, and water, and that is where they find “the coins,” or what we know them to be as the power coins that allow them to become Power Rangers. The water they all fall into suddenly changes color around them, each in their respective Ranger color. It seems that’s all it is… they went somewhere far off from the main hub of Angel Grove, find the power coins, and begin to glow. They laugh it off and move on. That’s that, the end, right? So they thought.
The next few scenes give us rapid shots of each of the five demonstrating how their bodies have transformed in not only appearance but also strength. They can jump long distances, break and crush things with their hands, and suddenly “the answer to all that is happening to you, is here.” Enter Zordon and the Command Center with a re-designed Alpha 5. Zordon finally calls them by their name: the Power Rangers. He continues to explain that the Rangers were “a legion of warriors” which is a definite change from the “teenagers with attitude” the ’90s show searched for. Maybe that would’ve been more fitting, what with the short snippet of Trini with her family, sarcastically explaining that they “found a spaceship underground” and she’s “probably a superhero now.” How does her mom react? By pulling out a cup and telling her to pee in it, a definite sign that Trini’s had to pee in cups before. So she’s one to have substance abuse of some kind in this Power Rangers universe to the point of urine samples? Interesting.
We’re then introduced to Rita, who has gone through one hell of a transformation in appearance, personality, and power. She is strong, very strong. Like in the ’90s, she’s aware of the Rangers’ identities, made clear by the way she had Trini held against the wall in her bedroom. Then there are the Putties. The Putties of the past are not made with clay, rather are made from concrete right off of the streets. We get to see scenes of the Rangers transforming for the first time, with Jason standing on a circular platform before the suit forms itself on his body, forming out of thin air. Shots of their revamped Zords, and their attacks against Rita, Goldar, and the Putties, are shown as well, giving us a lot of action and fighting that the movie will be filled with. Goldar, too, has changed, into what appears to be pure gold and rock, perhaps. His size is tremendous, towering over the Rangers’ Zords and buildings like a joke – and in comes a peek of the Megazord just before the trailer cuts.
There’s a lot of speculation as to what is going on and what will happen, most notably with the obvious absence of Tommy, one of the most popular Power Rangers of all. It’s good to note that Rita’s new costume is green, and the staff she holds has a green coin or orb in the center of it. My first thought: Could that be the green power coin that gives us the Green Ranger and his Dragonzord? It would make sense and provides an easy path to a sequel.
Another idea floating around the internet brings us back to the scene with Trini and Rita in her bedroom. How did Rita get there? How did she find out the Yellow Ranger’s identity? Does she know them all? In that scene, Rita has Trini cornered, and it is clear that her green armor is molding onto her body right then and there. That leads me to ask…was Rita hiding? Was she hiding at Angel Grove High School? Or, since Trini’s the only one we see her encounter directly, did she hide within Trini’s family?
Actress Becky G plays Trini Kwan in the movie, and she told MovieWeb.com that “Rita tries to make Trini feel like she’s the weakest link of the Power Rangers, and she feels it’s easiest to go for her.” Really? How did Rita come up with that idea? How did she draw that conclusion? How could she unless she knew her, knew of her, was close to her?
Then there’s Jason and Kimberly. There was a lot of hinting back in the ’90s that maybe Jason and Kimberly were going to be a thing. Obviously, Tommy came around and that never happened. So what made Saban run with it this time? This makes me flip back to my thoughts on Tommy, thinking that this could make for some love triangle fighting and competition in the sequel, pitting Jason and Tommy against each other for Kimberly, and then of course over the Rangers and Angel Grove. It makes the fight more personal.
Power Rangers: Final (So Far) Thoughts
Well, I really wish that they had gone full out with this reboot. Why do I say that? Half (if not more) of the target audience already knows the original five Power Rangers – Jason Lee Scott, Kimberly Hart, Trini Kwan, Billy Cranston, and Zack Taylor. They’re eventually joined by Tommy Oliver. These aren’t names that died in the ’90s, no. Power Rangers is still so popular that the toys are still being re-released in legacy editions. There are new 2nd edition Funko Pops because of how popular the first editions were. There have been S.H. Figuarts, keychains, mini blind box figures, a new comic featuring the Rangers teaming up with the Justice League?! what?! And there is currently a modern and updated version of Power Rangers that’s darker and grittier and perfect being done in comic form by BOOM! Studios (I highly recommend this comic to any Power Rangers fans). Personally, I would’ve rather a film adaption of the comic that is currently ongoing. If not that, I would’ve preferred five new teenagers. I can’t say for sure yet until March 24th, all I have to go on are trailers, but I feel like some of their personalities are gone completely. Billy isn’t Billy, Trini isn’t Trini; they’re other people. So why not just give them other names? Give us a whole new generation. This is my major problem with this movie thus far.
The newest trailer makes me feel like I’m about to watch Transformers. We’ve got a group of rebellious degenerate teenagers who are always in detention and always getting in trouble – that’s not very original. Granted, in the ’90s, everything was too squeaky clean. Too simple, cheesy, everyone is perfect and happy. We all know that’s false, but that was early ’90s television for you. With that in mind, fine: make little tweaks to their home life. Maybe Billy keeps making projects that explode and he keeps getting in trouble. Maybe Zack’s out all night partying and practicing his moves and lets his grades slip because of his sports. Maybe Jason finds it hard to pull himself out of his focused martial arts mode so being social is difficult for him. Just some ideas. And who knows, maybe they all do have that; I can’t break them all down based off of two-minute trailers. But I have to be honest, I’m more meh than I am excited, and having a Kanye West song appear to make this an action movie music video doesn’t make me not think I’m watching a Michael Bay movie, even though I’m not.
I’m not a major fan of the suits, especially the girls. Why does the breastplate for females have to outline each breast individually? That’s just…weird. This isn’t a Power Rangers movie flaw only. The new “Saban’s Power Rangers: Legacy Collection” figures do the same thing, and so do multiple toy lines and even some video games. The suits as a whole give me mega vibes of Iron Man with a dash of Transformers. I am happy we don’t have skin-tight spandex to work with, but a nod to the past with armored suits like in the 1995 movie might’ve been cool, or just a whole other design.
I’ll be honest, I don’t really want to see this movie. I wish so hard that the Rangers had different names so I could walk in with a blank slate, but it’s hard. However, as a Power Rangers fan and a Super Sentai fan (Gokaiger is my absolute favorite!), I feel like I should go see this. Besides, I can’t sit here and disapprove of something I haven’t seen. That isn’t fair.
What do you guys think? Fans or not so much? Hesitations? Excitement? Personally, I’ll be going to pick up the latest issue of MMPR by BOOM! Studios much, much faster but… see you guys in the theater.
Be sure to check out the trailer below and sound off with your own thoughts!