Timeranger To An Infinite Tomorrow
Shogo B'Stard finally presented his rather long Time Force-related post on the End of Time. I decide to reply to this "debate" (not really) with my thoughts on Timeranger's finale. I like to state it how Toshiki Inoue, Yasuko Kobayashi and I like to lump Judd Lynn with them tend to write weaker finales. I like Jetman but couldn't stand the way Inoue decided to give Gai Yuki a death unworthy of the gates of Valhalla -- then Kobayashi does the same to Naoto Takizawa. I did give out some details on the finale arc in the previous Timeranger entry which will discuss the finale arc. But I may want to make it "more readable but with detail" -- or not.
I just thought of a few cases where Timeranger actually tries to show the heroes as more flawed or not. One of the worst things to happen is suddenly Nadira disappears and she's never heard from again. Heck, I just assume she got killed. Then Tatsuya sends his friends back to their era which would bring us the "Calm Before the Storm" -- it's because their era changed. But it's crazy how calm they are even after they saw how much of a douchebag
Masato Kusaka Captain Ryuuya was. Come on, Captain Ryuuya appeared in the last days of the 20th Century to freaking BOSS. THEM. AROUND. Yes, that! On the other hand Gien's insanity is about to reach its peak -- which plays an important role in the finale and in history -- at least according to Captain Ryuuya! Heck, what's worse is that Tatsuya doesn't even realize his own descendant is up to some convoluted scheme!
The city chaos can be such a mess and I think about one plot. As the other rangers are in the future, we've got Zenittos running wild and causing chaos. Like I love to stress out, hasn't Captain Ryuuya considered the fact that if Tatsuya dies without children (and he doesn't have any unless he got some random girl preggers and her lineage went on to produce Captain Ryuuya) that he will be DELETED from history as a result? Time starts to change for the better for the 31st Century. I've already mentioned it millions of times that it resulted to Yuuri getting her family back, Domon having his suspension reduced to a year and Ayase getting the cure for the Osiris syndrome. Then I thought about the bloody finale.
As much as I'm no Power Rangers fan while I admit that there are some areas where Time Force's lighter and softer approach may have done some things better IMHO. There's the difference between Wataru vs. Mr. Collins on how they reacted with their sons' predicaments in the finale. The other one is a question of Naoto vs. Eric Myers. I still feel like the whole scene where Wataru says he believes in his son, that he will come back to be still quite a facedesk for this reason -- he's your son! Why doesn't he go out and look for him to see if he's alright? Way to go really pops! Way to go! I like how Mr. Collins actually went out there to search for his son! Then you have the situation where Eric's near death experience (though his survival does make sense too) was a little more meaningful. He decided to give whatever was left of him protecting both Wes and Mr. Collins. It could have been more meaningful if Naoto actually died protecting both Tatsuya and Wataru from a Zenitto that was about to shoot them. Also, I felt like letting Eric live and redeem himself was a better way to go IMHO but I find nothing wrong with Naoto's it's too late scenario either.
I thought about how often I compare Gai to Naoto due to their anti-hero status and rivalry with the red ranger. Gai himself was the toughest Jetman -- yet he died at the hands of a mugger three years after the fall of Vyram. That scene made me argue that Gai still lived though he was confirmed dead by the Jetman Encyclopedia, the Jetman non-canon Manga still keeps him dead and Gokaiger 28 has Inoue confirm it. Naoto is the toughest Timeranger character -- he's my second favorite for some reason. Yet I think about how a Zenitto's bullet killed him just like that. Yes, that one of all things. He was out there trying to rescue two birds of a little girl he befriended. Then he dies. Yes that one. Captain Ryuuya shows his neglect again -- he could have saved Naoto but chose to let the latter die instead. Seriously, Captain Ryuuya?
Then I considered the whole part of where the 31st Century isn't affected (for some reason) in spite of the Great Annihilation that was supposed to happen. So, what was the purpose of letting it happen anyway? Captain Ryuuya now wants to delete everyone's memories. He even goes as far as to throw Tac away into the junk. Really? It reminds me of certain corrupt officials who get rid of important documents as not to let anyone know they're guilty of something that should get them fired or even be liable to the criminal court. Yet, that's what Captain Ryuuya was guilty of -- he's guilty of neglect for crying out loud! He could have stopped Dolnero's escape knowing it'd happen but he didn't. He could have stopped Naoto's death but instead he chose to let it to happen -- all because he wanted to live on his normal life. Hmmm quite atypical that he had no plans for world domination. He wanted to live on in his time period WITHOUT otherwise changing the 30th Century as a whole. So it's possible he originally wanted to arrest Don Dolnero himself but time shifts happen as a result.
So what's the big point? Why did he let Naoto die as Time Fire? Aside from being a lame fake hero or hero wannabe -- he actually was destined to die one way or another so he chooses Naoto to die in his place. I guess it's old family feuds that led him to actually do so -- seeing that Naoto was his ancestor's rival so there! He was already guilty of neglect since he already knew that the Londarz were supposed to escape yet he did nothing at all to stop it from happening. He saw two possible futures -- one where G-Zord destroying Gien will destroy their era and the other where the Great Annihilation happens and their era is preserved. It's confusing -- how can destroying Gien even affect the future while letting a catastrophe that will cause a huge chunk of the 21st Century guarantee the preservation of the 31st Century? Hmmm if you ask me, theoretically speaking, the catastrophe would have probably caused mankind to actually pursue better technology in a time paradox. Or two, it has a reset button effect -- maybe the insane Gien was programmed to blow up in the Great Annihilation which will soon throw out everyone's character development out of the window as if the whole show never happened in the first place. I think it was meant to trigger almost the same effect as Kamen Rider Ryuki's rather oddball finale -- but back then the executives didn't meddle too much in Timeranger. Ryuki wasn't too fortunate and I wish that the intended nobody lives finale happened!
I can't decide which death is more satisfying to watch between Ayase eventually shooting Captain Ryuuya in an armed struggle OR Masato's death at the hands of Yuji Kiba (wearing the Kaixa suit) in Kamen Rider Faiz. Yes, both those characters are dark and sinister in their motives and I felt a sigh of relief seeing them die. As for Time Force, the lightening things up also happens in a rather good way for some. I thought making Alex the "true villain" of Time Force would mess the mood up. Instead, he has everyone return WITH HIS PERMISSION. Yes, the Time Force Rangers are authorized to return by Alex himself. It's not like how Captain Ryuuya himself held them back against their will resulting to his rather bloody death. It still has me mixed with the idea that the Bigger Bad of the series with his shades of gray morality -- is actually the hero's descendant some time along the line. The death was more up close and personal than your typical Super Sentai death scene.
The Timerangers finally storm back to the Year 2001 after getting rid of their douchebag captain. They enter where they actually help Tatsuya who could have perished. So again, Captain Ryuuya did you consider that your actions could have deleted you from existence? They finally proceed to convert the V-Rex's Lambda energy to Zeta-3 (which causes it to become immobile) and they fire it straight at a rampaging Neo-Crisis. The Neo-Crisis finally destroys, the Great Annihilation is stopped (and its purpose was unclear) and we see Gien recover his former self before disappearing. It's sad really to have Gien go insane, losing his identity and only recover it at his last moments.
Now it's time for the rather, tearjerker epilogue. I kinda like Timeranger's epilogue better than Jetman or not? But I felt like the finale still has me mixed with a lot of things that happened. First, we have Tatsuya seeing his friends literally separated from him with the laws of time. I wish that they just had the time to interact with each other before leaving. Time Force did give Wes the opportunity to actually talk with them. The Time Force Rangers weren't literally ripped apart by time. They were simply having to go and boarding the time ship. I felt like that should have been how things were but here, we see the other four getting literally ripped apart from Tatsuya by the laws of time itself!
I don't know about the impact of this one but it just shows that both Tatsuya and Yuuri are star-crossed lovers. TBH, I like throwing in the joke that the instrumental of Aqua's Turn Back Time should have been played nice and slow when the whole getting torn apart by time happens for Timeranger's finale. Domon has Honami and Yuuri has Tatsuya. How it'd be nice to turn back time for love isn't it? Yet it's happening -- the Timerangers are on their way to a new (and ambiguous to what's about to happen next) to the 31st Century. It looks like Kobayashi wanted us to use headcanon instead in deciding to what happened to the Timerangers after they tried to defy fate so many times.
One year later, we get some WTF. One of them involves Domon actually violated the laws of time by siring his son Domon Jr. (and later known as Mirai Moriyama in Gokaiger). Seriously? WTF. Also, don't tell me that Yuuri is preggers with Tatsuya's baby too?! Tatsuya later runs into doppelgangers of his friends and even a Naoto lookalike -- but he realizes it's not them. Wataru begrudgingly accepts his son's decision to let him live his life -- until his son is ready to accept the Asami name. So really, I wonder are the Timerangers even more dangerous to the flow of time than the Londarz or Captain Ryuya? Was Captain Ryuya just there to ensure things were running as it is while trying to make a few minor changes? Besides, that could be something. Hmmm... I even want to joke maybe Domon is the show's biggest villain by leaving a son behind. Also where in the world is Lila? I guess she probably got obliterated or her say in the 21st Century ended up deleting her as a result. That's the last we've seen of her so I guess Kobayashi wants to leave it to viewer headcanon.
What's interesting is that Kamen Rider Agito eventually aired on January 28, 2001 while Timeranger had its 49th episode. I think if Timeranger did wrap up its finale around December or January -- why not sign up Kasahara to be Hojo? I wouldn't mind seeing Hojo and Naoto played by the same actor. I still feel Yamasaki himself wasn't the right person to play that a--hole in Agito. Also, I thought about how Agito ends up suggesting that maybe Kamen Rider Agito can be technically be the "main villain" of the show and the Agitos are the true antagonist. The Overlord of Darkness is only trying to preserve the peace of humanity. Also, it seems to be like that Captain Ryuuya allowing the Great Annihilation to happen to preserve the future era was almost like the Overlord of Darkness' decision to launch a doomsday plan in order to save humanity. WTF... seriously? Both have mental issues. Yet I end up liking both shows' atypical writing for some strange for that strange reason. Also, so how did Timeranger air its final episode on February 4, 2001 AND Time Force air its first episode in February 3, 2001? Smells like someone cooked up something behind the scenes!
Then we have an interesting clip show which featured the Timerangers. It was a TV special that aired on February 11, 2001 as a special, non-canon episode for Timeranger. It featured the 23 Super Sentai giving everyone a glimpse of their past shows. I guess the hero encyclopedia from Jetman was cliche so they decided to do a tribute video instead. It's almost like a finale for one era of Super Sentai and the beginning of another. Overall, it was a fun clip show.
What was kind of hilarious (or not) was also Domon's statement that he wished that they had two girls after Bioman was featured -- all the while Time Force was AIRING that year. Yes, his Power Rangers counterpart is a woman. It still makes me wonder if it's true that making Trini a woman when Boi's a man was all about cultural differences. Hmmm... I guess more people became more accepting of female blue rangers and male yellow rangers after Ninja Storm huh? Hmmm... so what really happened?
I'm also reminded that post-Timeranger seasons have become less violent which makes me like them less -- all the while I need to take note that violence for the sake of it isn't good writing. There's still some blood but they've been kept it low. This week's Lupinranger vs. Patranger made the wounds of the Patrangers at very tolerable levels in contrast to all the blood you saw in the Rescue Police Trilogy, Janperson or Dairanger. You still get the out-of-suit fight scenes but they're no longer as intense. The levels of violence in Super Sentai after Timeranger seem to reach the TV-Y7-FV except for some occasional Japanese perversity (which has also been greatly reduced) and that it still sticks to the Japanese culture feel. Yet, I still enjoy them but not as much.
Anyway, I think my "debate" has been finished. If Shogo's got some wrap-ups then maybe I don't think I'd respond already. But I'm just looking forward to another Shogo post to read on. Meanwhile, just stay tuned for some more Lupinranger vs. Patranger EPISODE updates in the form of reviews. Meanwhile, I'm going to try and do some more Kamen Rider Build updates (which I decided to do so slow and focus on Super Sentai episode reviews) but it'd be some time before I end up writing on something. Evolt, Evolt, what am I going to write about you? XD