Hey, there, everypony. PRfan93 here with my first blog. Every day (or every so often, if I can), I am going to post a review of every single Power Rangers episode ever, from Mighty Morphin' to Dino Charge, with pop culture references and snarky humor abound! So sit back, relax, grab yourself some popcorn and those old MMPR-era action figures you never play with, and enjoy the show!
After listening to that iconic theme song for the first time, the first episode of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers takes us to what is presumably the moon (but it looks more like the planet Arrakis after it got rain after how-many years), where two astronauts find what looks like a "space dumpster" (but it looks more like an antique casserole dish). One of them suggests they open it up...and what happens? They set free an evil space witch with a grating voice and several minoins! WAY TO GO, IDIOTS! YOU JUST RELEASED A SEALED EVIL IN A CAN, AND POSSIBLY DOOMED THE PLANET!
These fine people, my friends, are Rita Repulsa and her minions Finster, Squatt, Baboo, and Goldar. Let's run a bit of background on them, shall we?
Rita Repulsa - The ringleader of this fine ragtag bunch, Rita Repulsa is an evil space witch who was sealed in the Anti-Evil Casserole Dish for 10,000 years. Once she's out, she decides to conquer Earth...because...why not?
Finster - Rita's official monster maker who resembles a Namekian/Pit Bull Terrier hybrid, he creates the foot soldiers and monsters out of clay.
Squatt - One half of Rita's comic relief duo, Squatt is...well, I don't know, exactly. The Power Rangers Wiki says he's a hobgoblin, but he resembles what would happen if Slimer and a pig had a baby...only Boo Berry was the father as revealed on Jerry Springer. The point is, he's comic relief, and he and Baboo are hilarious.
Baboo - The other half of Rita's comic duo, Baboo resembles a cross between Dracula and a monkey. He is often paired with Squatt, and their chemistry works well together.
Goldar - Rita's right hand man, Goldar is FREAKING SCARY. I mean, look at him. He looks like a demonic version of King Caesar from Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla. Though he may seem like the only sane one in the nuthouse that is Rita's gang, he actually has a flaw: his overconfidence and determination. No matter how many times he's defeated, Goldar always seems to think they can defeat the Power Rangers.
ANYWAYS, ON WITH THE EPISODE!
While all this is going on, we're introduced to our heroes: Jason, Billy, Kimberly, Zack, and Trini. These five teenagers live in the '90s-tastic city of Angel Grove, California, where they spend time hanging out at the Juice Bar and Youth Center, run by Ernie.
...Not that Ernie.
Jason (played by Austin St. John) - Jason is the typical martial artist of the group, and symbolizes what martial arts should be: a defensive art that should only be used wisely. He's the Red Ranger.
Billy (played by David Yost) - Billy is your typical '90s nerd, always talking in technobabble and fascinated by the latest technology. He's the Blue Ranger, and actually sticks around for quite a while, first as a Ranger, then as Mission Control for the next teams.
Kimberly (played by Amy Jo Johnson) - Kimberly is another '90s stereotype: the valley girl. She enjoys shopping, clothes, and other "girly" things. However, as time goes on, she develops and grows out of that, becoming more of an action girl.
Zack (played by Walter Jones) - Zack is one of two token minorities on the team, representin' da hood, yo! He's your typical 90s hip-hop/rap fan, even going as far as to develop his own martial arts style: Hip Hop-Kido, which combines breakdancing with karate. He's the Black Ranger...emphasis on the black.
Trini (played by Thuy Trang) - The other token minority of the team, Trini's the tomboy...or so we think. As seen in a later episode, she collects dolls. She's the Yellow Ranger...likewise, EMPHASIS. ON. THE. YELLOW.
...Now, I know what we're all thinking: "THAT'S RACIST AS ALL HELL!" But sadly, yes. The Black Ranger is black, and the Yellow Ranger is Asian. HOWEVER, I would like to point out that Tony Oliver, one of the executive producers, said they didn't know this happened until about episode 10. Likewise, Walter Jones was originally cast as Billy, but he wanted to be Zack, mainly so he could be recognized more.
Anyway, while they're hanging out in the Juice Bar, we meet their comic relief duo, Farkis "Bulk" Bulkmeier, and Eugene "Skull" Skullovich.
Bulk (played by Paul Schier) - Bulk is supposed to be the typical punk/bully, but, like Skull, he comes off as more of a class clown. He and Skull appear throughout the series starting with this episode, going though major character development. He eventually becomes an uncle to Skull's son Spike in Power Rangers Samurai.
Skull (played by Dr. Jason Narvy) - Like Bulk, Skull is the class clown. He and his best friend go through character development, and he eventually has a son.
...Aaaand, then an earthquake happens. But this is no ordinary earthquake...THIS IS RITA'S DOING! Out in the desert, the mighty wizard Zordon asks his robot assistant Alpha 5 to "recruit teenagers with attitude". AND THUS, THE POWERPUFF GIRLS-IIII MEAN, POWER RANGERS WERE BORN!
So, the teens are teleported to Zordon's base, the Command Center. He tells them their mission, they (unsurprisingly enough) don't believe him, and they leave.
Zordon (voiced by David Fielding) - Zordon, a powerful wizard from the planet Eltar, fought Rita Repulsa 10,000 years before. He is trapped in a time warp, leaving him as a giant floating head whose lips are sealed open with Elmer's glue. He's the mentor to the Rangers.
Alpha 5 (voiced by Richard Steven Horvitz) - Alpha 5 serves as the Command Center's caretaker, and little brother to the team. His catchphrase is "Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi!"
So, upon leaving the Command Center, the teens are confronted by Rita's footsoldiers the Putty Patrollers. They then realize that Zordon was right, and they morph into the Power Rangers for the first time.
After defeating the Putties, Goldar arrives. He and the Rangers battle, and upon losing, Rita uses her magic to make him grow into GOLDARZILLA! Realizing that they can't defeat Goldar normally, the Rangers use the Dino Megazord for the first time.
The Megazord and Goldar battle for a bit, then the Rangers defeat him...again.
Afterwards, the teens return to the Command Center, where they celebrate their first victory.
While the Rangers are bland, and the monster vs. robot fight cliche, overall I thought this was a very good introduction to the Power Rangers franchise. It sets the basic formula, and executes it perfectly.
My Score: 7/10