Power Ranger is a kids show

Things only adults notice in Power Rangers

By Claire Mulkerin / .16. December 2019 2:46 p.m. EDT /. Updated: December 16, 2019, 3:13 p.m. EDT

Power Rangers first came about because of a strange and brilliant idea. The creators Haim Saban and Shuki Levy realized they could buy the rights to a Japanese TV show calledGreat Sentai, in which a team of superheroes take on monsters in helmets that hide their faces, re-synchronize the dialogue in English during the action scenes and then record new footage with American actors about the worldly life of the heroes. This would allow the developers to create a big budget action series for a sitcom budget.

The plan worked and the resulting show was a certified hit. Power Rangers now has over 25 seasons and is currently running like a well-oiled machine. However, in the early days this was not the case. Don't get us wrong - the action was great, the hard rock soundtrack was grueling, and the show had a lot of heart - but in the first few seasons Power RangersIt was a hot mess, full of monstrous manufacturing errors, dangling storylines, and unsettling effects on the way the world was built.

Because of this, we're mostly only looking at the first few seasons of the show, but we'll also be sprinkling parts from later seasons. The many curiosities of Power RangersMost of the kids who watched in the 90s were certainly over their heads, but now that these kids have grown up and reached the age of thought, we're here to check out all the nonsense that only adults can spot when they watchPower Rangers.

Crazy footage matches

Because much of the footage is out Power Rangers is recycled from Great SentaiOne problem the writers face all the time is how best to hide the gaps between the two TV shows they are putting together. Usually these transitions are relatively invisible, but sometimes the show has to do crazy things to connect the dots between the American and Japanese plot.

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For example in Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger, the season of Great Sentai that would Mighty Morphine Power Rangers, The Green Ranger dies in the middle of the series. The authors of Power Rangers didn't want to kill you Green Ranger, Tommy, so instead had to write strange inventions shortly after Tommy's entry into almost every episode to justify his absence in the transformed fight scenes. Tommy Has Karate PracticeTommy Gets TrappedTommy Gets Injured And Needs Rest. Over and over again until the show finally comes to a permanent solution: Tommy loses his powers.

Perhaps the funniest attempt to fuse American and Japanese footage took place during Power Rangers RPM. Inside, the Rangers have a high-tech bus with the word 'Go-Onger' on the side. That is due to the season of Great Sentai The RPM from which the footage was taken has been called Motor Sentai Go-onger, where 'Go-Onger' is the name of the team. Solve the problem Rpm The authors decided that this bus would be named 'Go-Onger', which stands for 'Ground Outdoor Operational Networked General Purpose Exploration Rover'. Sure man.

World-changing inventions that are never mentioned again

Mighty Morphine Power Rangers Usually you draw a pretty hard line between the worldliness of Angel Grove and the craziness that comes with ranging power, but every now and then - especially in the early episodes - it becomes clear that the writers hadn't really figured out what they were doing with that Sound the sitcom halfway through the show. Then they played completely Calvinball with the laws of physics.

For example, in the episode 'The Dark Warrior Trini's uncle, a scientist named Howard, invents - no joke - an invisibility potion. When it is poured on an object, that object disappears. When a person drinks it, they and their clothes become invisible for a few minutes. How he invented this potion is never explained. It's mostly only used for comedy, and once the episode ends, neither the potion nor Howard is ever mentioned again.

There is also Billy's greatest invention: the often vicious wheel bow. For the first time in the episode, 'Big Sisters, the Radbug is a modified Volkswagen Beetle that this ordinary schoolboy can somehow fly. And as if inventing a flying car wasn't enough, Billy claims the Radbug can accelerate from zero to 3,000 mph in three seconds. It appears a few times in the first season. The last time we see it, it sits in Billy's driveway in the episode 'Doomsday' and then it is never spoken of again. However, it reappeared in one of the later ones Power RangersComics in which Lord Zedd made a monster out of it.

The Power Rangers never say 'die'

Many 90s children's shows have an unspoken rule against using the words 'kill' or 'die'. For a show like Rugrats or Goof TroopThat's not really a problem. But for Power RangersWith our heroes literally battling evil aliens in every episode, it is far stranger and horrific not to talk about death than just taking the time to speak to it from time to time.

It's not just that the villains keep talking about wanting to 'destroy' the Rangers - perhaps the best example in history of television writers staying true to the letter of the law and completely ignoring its spirit. The megazord also sometimes flattens the weird skyscraper with a poorly placed right hook and no one talks about whether or not there were people inside.

But by far the largest dead elephant in the room in any season of the year Power Rangers happens in Power Rangers RPM. This season takes place in a Terminator-meets-Mad Max post-apocalyptic setting where evil machines have taken over the world and the Rangers are protecting the last remaining human city on earth from weekly robotic invasions. What happened to all other cities on earth? What happened to all the people in these cities? Presumably they were all systematically rounded up and slaughtered by killer robots, but hey, as long as we never say the word 'die', it's still a kids show, right?

A world without kisses

It's just confusing. Underneath there are many strange self-imposed rules Power Rangers seems to have a ban on ever showing kisses on screen. Well, this wouldn't be a problem if the show never had romantic subplots, but there are numerous romantic relationships portrayed throughout the show's many seasons and the ways the series has to keep dancing around to show that someone who ends up kissing their romantic partner often is very weird. For example in the first episode of Power Rangers: Time PowerWe see the Red Ranger Alex making a proposal to his girlfriend, the Pink Ranger Jen. She accepts, puts the ring on her finger ... and they hug.

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Some seasons actually use this rule for some interesting stories, as in Power Rangers RPM When Summer the Yellow Ranger almost has a kiss with Dillon the Black Ranger, they are interrupted at the last moment. But most of the time it's just confusing. For example in Power Rangers: Ninja SteelThe actors and writers tried to record a kiss between Hayley the White Ranger and boyfriend Calvin the Yellow Ranger, but apparently the upper classes didn't have it. Zoe Robins, the actor who later plays Hayley, confirms on Instagram, "We did our best to get a kiss at the Ninja Steel season finale, but it didn't make the final cut."

The real reason the Power Rangers are waiting to call the Zords

Power Rangers is often ridiculed for its formulaic structure, and it is a perfectly fair review. The Rangers fight a monster, they win, the monster grows, the Rangers call it Megazord, they beat the monster again. You can set your watch accordingly. For this reason, the question was often asked in the school playground: 'Why don't you just use the big robot from the start?'

Believe it or not, the show actually addresses this. In the first episode, Zordon tells teenagers that there are three rules to being a power ranger: never use your power for personal gain, never escalate a fight unless you are forced to and keep your identity a secret.

The first and third rules are pretty normal for superheroes, but let's talk about this second rule. We all know the show is about martial arts, but this second rule reminds us of that Power Rangers philosophically it is also about self-defense. When bullies Bulk and Skull attend Jason's martial arts class because they want to learn to 'beat up people', Jason tells them, 'Martial arts were not designed to hurt others.'

In addition to the deeper themes of the show, Power RangersThe constant emphasis on protection rather than violence also explains why the heroes never launch a preventive attack on Rita's moon palace, for example. It is also probably no coincidence that this news would have given the show's creators an adequate defense in court if two children injured each other while playing Power Rangers'and the parents decided to sue.

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Wait, the bad guys only know the Rangers' secret identities?

Like many superheroes, the Power Rangers have secret identities. Allegedly, the reason most heroes hide their superheroes from their friends and loved ones is because they want to protect them from bad guys. The weird thing about the Power Rangers is that while Bulk, Skull, and Ernie don't know their identities, they're all bad guys to do. Right from the start, Rita knows who the Rangers are, who they hang out with, where they sleep at night, all that stuff.

The bad guys sometimes use this knowledge to their advantage, but they never really break up and do anything Really angry. Rita sends Squat to Trini's bedroom once. While she's sleeping, Squat just steals one of her dolls and turns her into a monster that attacks the city. Baboo realizes that he can put something in the Rangers' unattended drinks when they play volleyball, but he gives them a magic potion that will turn them into fearful punks instead of, you know, arsenic. They seem to follow a rogue philosophy similar to that of Dr. Evil by Austin Powers - they definitely want to kill their nemes, but there is an unspoken code of conduct when it comes to how bad guys should act. You could just have a giant monster step on their house while they sleep, but where's the sport in that?

Zack's missing finger

It's never mentioned during the show, but Walter Jones, the actor who plays Zack, is missing the middle finger on his left hand. Apparently he lost his finger in an accident when he was four years old.

It's such a subtle detail that even if you'd watched the entire series multiple times, you'd probably never notice it. There aren't many close-ups of Zack's hands, and the low-definition VHS quality of most versions of the show makes it difficult to see anything in such detail. To make matters worse, when Zack is transformed - and thus played by a different actor - suddenly has all ten fingers. Perhaps the energy of the morphine 'grid gives the teenagers not only superhuman strength and reflexes but also temporary superhuman regeneration the lizard Spider Man.

As fun as it is to think about it, unfortunately we think that the real explanation for why Zack sometimes has nine and sometimes ten fingers is the same explanation that is always at the center of each of the myriad incongruities and secrets woven across the country are Slapdash Worldbuilding by Power Rangers: You just shouldn't think about it that hard. They didn't even bother putting nine fingers in his hand with comic books.

Unceremonius leaves the world of the Power Rangers

In the first years of Power RangersThe cast had a surprisingly high turnover. You wouldn't know why Rangers keep leaving the team as a kid, but if you dig into it as an adult, you find that the root of this problem was that, according to many of those involved, the show tended to treat its actors like garbage.

Perhaps it is unsurprising as the seed of the idea became Power Rangers was born out of a desire to save money, but the original five Rangers were paid terribly - only $ 600 per episode. Because of this, three of the original Rangers - Austin St. John (Jason), Thuy Trang (Trini), and Walter Jones (Zack) - left the show at the beginning of season two, and their characters were abruptly written out and replaced by three new teenagers .

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Amy Jo Johnson (Kimberly) resigned a year later, and the last original Ranger, David Yost (Billy), resigned a year later. In his case, poor pay wasn't necessarily the problem - it was widespread and systematic homophobia. Yost claims that he walked off the set halfway through filming an episode after being labeled 'doomed' too many times and never returned. He was written out of the show in an extremely chunky way with his character Moving to an Alien Planet. The last we see of him is a blurry shot that was sent back to Earth. It's clearly just old footage from Yost combined with new audio from someone making a bad Billy impression.

The giant boy who lives in downtown Angel Grove

We may look at thingsPower Rangers that only adults would notice, but to be fair, this is so obvious that some kids have likely noticed, too. In the episode 'Who the Bells Trolls For', while the Megazord battles the villain of this episode, Mr. Ticklesneezer, there is a truly bizarre moment that totally shakes the reality of the world. In a short shot, a child stands next to the megazord in the lower right corner of the screen without warning or explanation. The kid comes to the waist of the megazord and given the scales we're theoretically working on, the kid would be about 15 stories tall. The child is never addressed in the dialogue, appears again briefly in another shot and is then simply gone completely.

This is actually a remnant from the episode of Great Sentaifrom the 'For whom the bell trolls' was adapted. In this episode, a kid named Toshio actually grows on a megazord scale. This element of the story was cut for the American adaptation, but either no one noticed the kid standing next to the megazord when this shot was spliced ​​in Power Rangersor no one cared. However, some part of us wish that someone had intercepted this while we were editing, as we'd love to hear what kind of quick voice-over line they'd come up with for Zordon to try to explain.

Is Zordon Just Racist Against Monsters?

Make no mistake: The Power Rangers kill a quantity of monsters. We should assume that these monsters are unrepentant evil ... but why? Most are fully speech-capable and have a wide range of emotions. There's a whole arch in Power Rangers Zeo where the bad guys Goldar and Rito get amnesia and temporarily become good guys. Is it possible that Zordon doesn't like crazy looking aliens?

Some evidence of Zordon's potential bigotry could lie in the episode. 'Countdown to destruction. 'In it, the United Alliance of Evil is on the verge of conquering the entire universe. So Zordon, the almighty mentor of the Power Rangers, sacrifices himself and unleashes a massive wave of energy that should theoretically purify the universe of all evil. Some of the recurring bad guys hit by this wave will be wiped out, while others will just destroy the evil within and become good guys instantly.

You could imagine the monsters being destroyed who are truly hideous and the friendlier, more redeemable bad guys being spared, but that's not how things work.Ecliptor, for example, is destroyed despite continually showing deep affection and loyalty to his foster daughter, Astronema, while sparing many of the show's worst villains, such as Rita, Zedd, and Divatox. What Zordon's energy wave actually seems to be using as a criterion for separating the sheep from the goats is just whether you look human or not. Not cool, dude.

Red coats in Angel Grove?

The tangled continuity of Power Rangers is often a complete mess. But luckily,Power Rangers Fans work a lot harder than the writers to make sure everything makes sense, and every now and then they discover two dangling threads of worldbuilding that come together to make something really awesome. What follows is one such example - it seems like a simple mistake, but if you keep thinking about it too much, you will eventually hit gold.

It is often implied that Angel Grove is in California as the equivalent of that universe to Los Angeles. In a miniseries called 'Return of the Green Ranger, the gang travels back to the 18th century and sees British red coats patrolling the streets of Angel Grove, suggesting the teenagers are in a pre-independence era. There is only one problem with that: the Spaniards colonized California, not the British.

You could write this off as a mistake. Whoever wrote this episode forgot that Angel Grove was an analogue of Los Angeles and therefore probably no longer had redcoats in it by the 18th century. But for a moment, don't do that. Trust that everything makes sense and just go deeper. If Power Rangers takes place in an alternate reality where the British settled California instead of the Spanish, the city of Los Angeles would likely have an English name instead of a Spanish one. So how about 'Angel Grove' instead of 'Los Angeles'? Is that total nonsense or did we just tear this thing wide open?