A Comparison of Zyuranger's Premiere Episodes to MMPR's Premiere Episodes

So it is recognized today as the 20th anniversary of the day that Rita Repulsa first escaped the dumpster but much of those scenes were taken from Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger to adapt into Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers:

First let's deal with Bandora herself.  In the MMPR version, Rita Repulsa just decides to conquer the next planet but in Zyuranger, Bandora was actually born from the planet Earth and not an alien where she held a grudge against it deciding to take over the world as we know it. So pretty much, there's much drama in the first episode with that not only does she harm the astronauts and destroy the seal that sealed her and her minions, Bandora also is involved with two children kidnapped which really makes her really scary or her actually uprooting buildings to create her Bandra Palace on the moon.  There's also much drama between Barza and Bandora in the first episode due to the obvious fact that Barza was not sealed in a time warp. Just a thought... looking at Zyuranger I was pretty surprised Griforther couldn't even talk until Lamie came along... while Goldar just refuses to shut up. XD

Second let's compare the Zyurangers to the MMPR team.  So the obvious difference is this- Zyurangers involves five ancient warriors of mankind who were put in suspended animation (inside their very own command center) while MMPR like Turboranger involves teenagers with the attitude to save the world.  So also Trini is female while her original counterpart is male.  In terms of premier sequence, I thought that randomly choosing five teenagers out of the blue and not giving an explanation why they were chosen felt pretty blank.  It felt a little like that during the first episode of Turboranger until the explanation came in.   Overall, two very different teams that develop differently.  Personalities were different so they can be enjoyed to their own merits too.  So yeah if Trini tried to run away from being a Power Ranger, Zordon won't have a good explanation to her.  Made me think the Zyuranger footage could have been used as their ancestors or not... or just them being five heroic warriors who Zordon endowed with powers and later gathered them.

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Yup there was Bulk and Skull who would seem to be human versions of Totbat and Bukback.  They were funny for me at first but they get pretty boring quickly imo.  Made me think that I won't mind having people as silly as they are IF they were actually plot material, not something you can cut away and the plot never gets affected.  That's what I felt about them.  You don't see characters like these in Zyuranger that is non-plot contribution.

While many may recognize Barza as the Zordon of Zyuranger (due to some Barza footages being used in MMPR as Zordon's past image), one might consider the difference that Barza has no robot assistant.  Alpha Five is obviously an original American work based on robot assistants prior to Zyuranger like Peebo in Bioman, Mag in Flashman and Arthur G6 in Fiveman to name a few of them.  Comparing Zordon to Barza, Barza was never trapped in a time warp and is featured to have lesser knowledge than Zordon has about world events which imo balances things out.  Meanwhile Zordon seems to sees everything from his time warp which imo causes a lack of balance.  Zordon even in the first episode introduces the Dinozords telling them that they will combine into the Dino Megazord, in Zyuranger it is introduced in a build up manner.  For me, Zordon introducing their mecha and weapons on hand is more standard protocol while Zyuranger's method was trying something new which for me, both of them are good in their own respects.  However I still feel sorry for Zordon being trapped in that glass tube while finding it cheesy how he knows too much of what's going on in Angel Grove.

So yeah sequencing of events are better done in Zyuranger imo.  For one, Daizyujin doesn't appear until episode six to battle an enlarged Dora Sphinx.  In MMPR, the Dino Megazord makes its appearance to battle an enlarged Goldar to whcih was obviously rehashing some footages involving Griforther's battle with Daizyujin in the episode 17 where Burai first appeared.  The drama involving the children was also something.  The Zyurangers also in this one unlike the MMPR who already had their team spirit, had to learn to work together to which they did.  MMPR on the other hand at the beginning was almost as standard as most Sentai shows- like how the Turborangers were already cooperative ever since the beginning.

The getting of the weapons.  While the MMPR rangers get their weapons the standard way like most Super Sentai group or Power Rangers group get theirs, Zyuranger actually did some deviation that is by a two part episode that involves them going into the Land of Despair just to get their weapons which I think can be a great deviation but at the same time makes me feel that the whole arc was an experimental concept for later Sentai seasons to see if it works.  So instead of having Barza hand over the weapons to the Zyurangers like Professor Dazai did to the Turborangers and Zordon did to the MMPR team, they go on to this unusual journey which was nice and I won't mind having this kind of plot in future series.  This also had a scene of Bandora shaking the island which was used for Rita Repulsa's scene in MMPR shaking the Island of Illusion. Maybe the way the Zyurangers got their weapons wasn't so well received since later Sentai to succeed them just had it "handed over the typical way" than "go to a quest to find them" but that's just me WMG-ing. 
   
Then we are introduced to another two parter after the weapons.  So yeah, Daizyujin does not appear until episode six.  In MMPR I thought it silly that the "power crystals" were needed after that incident which they fought Goldar.  In here, the two episode arc involved Dora Sphix (King Sphinx in MMPR) who was carrying out a scary riddle that trapped children in trees, something that MMPR omitted probably due to censorship issues. Also the development was that in Zyuranger, we see the Zyurangers learn their need to cooperate and are allowed to see the world get destroyed.  In MMPR the King Sphnx arc just took one episode though and I wonder why he ended up getting a toy like he was a regular villain?!

Just my two cents to commemorate the day Toei got into America via Saban Entertainment.  

Comments

  1. This is a fantastic breakdown of Day Of Dumpster vs "The Birth" and speaking as someone who was in the target range when MMPR released, I found Zyu to be a great jumping-in point for Super Sentai when I was older and had access to appropriately speedy internet. The familiarity, I feel is key to introducing people to MMPR's source material.

    Even today I love to compare the shows and see how dramatically different MMPR was vs Zyu, even taking the unaired Pilot (with Rita destroying the city and riding on a bicycle) into account.

    Thanks to a childhood love of MMPR, I now enjoy Super Sentai for what it is, an enjoyable family show that is often campy and goofy, but entertaining almost all the way through.

    My favorite Sentai have been Gokaiger, Kyoryuger, Zyu, Go-Buster, Battle Fever J, and of course Akibaranger for laughs. Dekaranger has been one of the more enjoyable series I have caught here and there but it hasn't really grabbed me like others. Suggestions?

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    1. Thanks for dropping by. For one, I'd confess that one of the many reasons why I like Super Sentai more than Power Rangers is that the former has more goofy, campy scenes aside from the drama. I'm pretty much a drama king myself.

      So yeah I'd like to advise you to try watching Shinkenger, Boukenger, Dairanger, Kakuranger, Megaranger, Gingaman and for pre-Zyu Liveman, Maskman and Jetman to name some.

      By the way please do visit the Valsag Fantasy blog to see some great series you should watch.

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  2. Thanks for the tip, I'll be sure to check out Valsag. I tried Shinkenger but seeing Samurai first really left a bad taste in my mouth. (SYMBOLS? REALLY?) A chance to educate American kids on some very basic Japanese culture was just ignored for no good reason. But I'll try again.
    Akiba made me gain an interest into Boukenger, which is on my list after I catch up on my Kyoryuger.

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