My Own Thoughts On Kazunori Inaba's Comment Concerning Super Sentai And Power Rangers
Image source is from Japanese Entertainment Fusion (JEFusion)
Aside from the quality of acting, I always thought about the Super Sentai cast members and doing their own stunts in the show. So I thought about how Super Sentai like its American adaptation or localization namely Power Rangers has its ups and downs too. Now it's time for me to share my thoughts about the quality of action scenes of both franchises then and now based on the quote from JEFusion. I wasn't able to immediately react to this since I didn't have the right words (and I hope I do have them) to at least, express my opinion (both positive and negative) on the matter.
So what's up with the interview of Chris Cantada and his interview with Kazunori Inaba (Takeru, credited as Ryousuke Kaizo as a screen name during Maskman's screening) and Kei Shindachiya (Ken Hoshikawa). I thought about the question about Power Rangers and how the Sentai purists must be overreacting or in denial. When I think of them saying, "Wait! They are not endorsing Power Rangers, they are just stating their opinion.", somehow I am tired of hearing their B.S. because even if I dislike Power Rangers ever since the Saban Brands era, I still can stay some positive things about it when even I am not really a huge fan. Based on the interview done by Cantada, the two Sentai actors have actually given a positive opinion on Power Rangers, that is, Power Rangers right now still has its own main cast doing its stunts before the stuntman kicks in for the Henshin sequence.
Here's something I considered with what the two Sentai seniors said about the cast members doing their own stunts. Now they aren't really saying Power Rangers has better action scenes today than yesterday or what, they are stating the phrase while these days, Power Rangers still has its own main cast doing their own stunts which is evident in Power Rangers Dino Charge. When both Inaba and Shindachiya said their words, I guess they must be comparing two seasons that are currently airing namely Dino Charge and Ninninger. I may have not liked Power Rangers Megaforce but in due fairness, the show itself still had the rangers doing some of their own stunts before the stuntmen or the use of licensed footage eventually kicks in. So doesn't mean I don't like a show doesn't mean I won't point out positives whenever I find them.
Here's what I can't deny that back then, a lot of Super Sentai seasons had really jaw-dropping action scenes. In what way did I consider the old school Super Sentai action scenes to be superior than that of Power Rangers? Every time I watch a 90s Power Rangers series vs. a 90s Super Sentai series, I do develop my own biases because of the action scenes. I always thought that a lot of the scenes in 90s Super Sentai vs. their Power Rangers counterparts were more or less far better during that decade.
Back then, Super Sentai really had plenty of raw fisticuffs and really, really intense out of scene action. I tend to make this type of what I believe is a persona reaction like, "Geki vs. Burai is way better than Jason vs. Tommy. Burai is better than Tommy in every way!" or "As much as I like Kimberly over Mei... but Mei has done some better action scenes. As much as I think Amy Jo Johnson is a better, more charming actress but she really lacks the quality of stunts that Reiko Chiba did!" Those were the days that Super Sentai had really surpassed Power Rangers in terms of stunts and action scenes.
Let's take a look at the action scenes of Super Sentai cast members doing their own stunts when it came to the post-Timeranger era. For a good portion of post-Timeranger, there were a lot of action scenes but quality-wise, I really think it's pretty much in par with Power Rangers when it comes to action quality where everything is impressive but not that impressive. For the shows that had some decent do it yourself stunts were from Gaoranger up to Kyoryuger that while the quality of stunts were Power Rangers-ish, I always thought that it was better than none but I tend to miss the action quality of the main cast doing their stunts in the 90s. What was noteworthy was that the post-Zordon era specifically during Judd Lynn's era started a trend for Power Rangers to try to be more serious while not being too serious.
Most of Super Sentai post-Timeranger end up having that standard that while it retains its cultural difference, I still keep seeing more common ground. I always thought of stuff like that whenever the main cast of both franchises do their action scenes, not many of them are that impressive. I even would think of something like, "When Hoji fought Jilvan, it was a nice scene but the more I look at it, it's more of a Jason David Frank training video. Ken's beating of Amoeba Rugin in Fiveman was better! I like both blue rangers, they are my favorite from both shows but Ken's moments were much better."
Going back to reflect on Super Sentai's stunts which I'll paraphrase with these words, "These days, Super Sentai doesn't do much of their own cast doing their own stunts, Power Rangers has won in that department." to re-state what was said earlier. Perhaps, it was intended to compare Ninninger with Dino Charge. Looking at how both shows, Dino Charge has done a moderate amount of civilian fight scenes while Ninninger hardly did any of the cast members doing their own civilian fight scenes for the main cast. To add, ToQGer itself lacked civilian fight scenes (but again, maybe it's because they are children in the body of adults) while Power Rangers Megaforce had civilian fight scenes. Inaba was stating what was missing perhaps in the current season of Super Sentai in contrast to the current season of Power Rangers and he's decided to share his thoughts on it.
Also, I thought of this that even if Inaba and Shindachiya are not directly endorsing Power Rangers in the interview, they are not hating it either. Looking at how they reacted with the question regarding Power Rangers, you can tell that there was no hatred for the franchise. Even when I think of the argument that the two are not endorsing Power Rangers in any way but just stating their opinion on where Power Rangers is better as of right now, isn't stating a positive opinion also a way of promoting something? It's time to consider that thinking outside the box helps more than when you just have an overly narrow view of things. I hope this post helps.