How Watching Pre-Zyuranger Super Sentai Series Affects What I Think About Power Rangers
It's no secret that watching Super Sentai contributes to my personal dislike for Power Rangers -- but that's just my personal preference! I just couldn't digest too much of the mish-mash of Japanese fight footage with the American fight footage or the rush pacing -- which just comes out pretty awkward more often than not. Sure, I could understand the cultural differences between the U.S. and Japan and that Toei allowed Saban, Disney and now Hasbro to run the Power Rangers franchise. Mighty Morphin' became a huge monster hit (though it got overused so it's safe to assume it's horribly aged today after its success) and all of it was Toei's move to hit the international market. Now, it's time to talk about what could be absurd or not -- it's all about how watching pre-Zyuranger series actually contribute to my dislike for Power Rangers or even convinces me to just ignore it.
So what's with pre-Zyuranger series? So far, I've seen the following pre-Zyuranger series from start to end namely Battle Fever J, Sun Vulcan, Goggle V, Changeman, Maskman, Liveman and Fiveman. So far, I wish to see more subbed episodes of Dynaman, Flashman and Turboranger so I can fully understand what's being said. Hmmm... where do I start? I just thought about how watching more of the pre-Zyuranger series also contributes to my dislike for Super Sentai. So which series would have contributed to my dislike to a certain season of Power Rangers all the more?
It all started with Turboranger. WTF? We're not talking about Power Rangers Turbo here aren't we because it wasn't based on Gekisou Sentai Carranger! Yeah I know but this is but Turboranger really has affected what I think not really about Power Rangers Turbo but Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers itself. Yeah, I could probably just ignore Mighty Morphin' while watching Zyuranger but Turboranger has made me think about why I don't watch to watch Mighty Morphin' anymore.
So what goes on? It's the first season of teenagers with attitude followed by Megaranger in 1997. I always felt Mighty Morphin' rewatches get too painful especially with Bulk and Skull or how their Mathematics teacher Misa Yamaguch actually puts Miss Appleby to shame. Miss Appleby was just there to be there. No not Misa! Misa shows herself as the ever-concerned teacher who'd even go out there to help her students -- the finale even made her go as far as to encourage the Turborangers to fight on when she discovered their secret identities! Turboranber may not be a perfect show BUT I could tell you that it's been way more solid than Mighty Morphin' can ever be -- even if it did suffer from a lack of popularity when it first aired!
But it doesn't end with Turboranger. Going backwards, I still think about more shows that gives me more reasons to dislike Power Rangers...
I could really think -- call me crazy but Taiyo Sentai Sun Vulcan actually contributes to said reason why I also don't like Power Rangers. I remembered how I started disliking Power Rangers in the second season. It wasn't just the lack of respect the late Thuy Trang got but also the quality of replacement Jason Lee Scott had. I may not like Power Rangers but Jason was a very qualified leader so why replace him with Rocky De Santos of all people?
Watching Sun Vulcan's second half made me think of the most absurd wish I had -- why didn't Jason just contact Takayuki Hiba (the second Vul Eagle) from the tale of two eagles to replace him? Yeah I know it's impossible to happen but I still wish it happened. Takayuki proved himself to be the superior red ranger, the second half proved to be even more exciting than the first half of Sun Vulcan. Besides, it was Takayuki who started that almost enduring tradition of red rangers who are swordsmen in more than one way. He showed himself to be the kind of replacement that Ryuusuke Oowashi was looking for. Take that Rocky! You just can't top Takayuki as a better replacement red!
A Bioman rewatch suddenly makes you wonder why the writers of Mighty Morphin' never bothered to take special care with Alpha Five? Sure both Bioman's Peebo and Alpha Five are considered "children" by their programming yet only one robot sure got better writing. Sure, Peebo does feel weird especially who in the right mind would get a giant Megazord (in this case, the Bio Robo) to pick up the five chosen descendants to fight New Empire Gear?
Peebo actually felt he had more use than Alpha Five even if they both have the same mannerisms. Peebo himself is the one giving the Biomen instructions when needed such as the first episode. You just never saw Alpha Five telling the Mighty Morphin' team to use their morphers or giving basic instructions. Peebo was quite involved in the first battle. When he's not out there -- he's actually giving basic information to the Biomen. I just wonder why didn't Mighty Morphin' make Alpha Five all that useful other than comic relief in the long run? At least Gingaman did it right with the relationship of Moak and Boku.
I can't forget actually watching Changeman and why I think Power Rangers in Space is well... overrated! I thought about how the show itself may be very 80s (and this show is as old as I am) -- I just can't get over the fact that even an older show in the 80s would actually feel better than a show in the late 90s. But how did it work?
Maybe I could talk about how the team itself is military-based, they're tough as nails and they would be qualified to take down the United Alliance of Evil from their own show -- the Space Empire Gozma. I tried watching some episodes of PR in Space and Dark Specter is better renamed as the "Dark Bitcher" -- all the while Star King Bazoo deserves the title a lot more. I thought of how Bubba feels more well-developed than Ecliptor in their rivalry with the red ranger, how Shiima's backstory ends up better than Astronema and there are times I feel Ahames was actually better-written than the equally vicious Trakeena. Sure, Trakeena would still make an equally painful enemy to the Changeman but I felt Ahames' tension with both sides of the coin had better writing.
Well it does sound crazy but I think it's crazy -- how could I suddenly dislike Power Rangers Lost Galaxy because of Choshinsei Flashman? While Lost Galaxy does have a decent cast of characters and an ambitious concept -- I just felt like the very 80s Flashman (which also had a Lost Galaxy theme but events happen on Earth -- not in space) just makes Lost Galaxy (in spite of all its well-done visuals and effort to actually break the mold) just not my thing anymore.
I admit, I've only watched some fan subs here and there and Deadfish Fansubs is well -- dead! Then I think about how I thought villains in Flashman are unusually cruel. I could imagine what if Scorpius were out there in the galaxy to get genetic samples for bizarre experiments. Instead of Trakeena, Scorpius has a mad scientist he created from Earth a hundred years ago to become his right hand man. I even thought about how Sir Kaura and his sidekick Bo Gardan were truly a pain in the neck. Sure, Deviot himself was well deadly while I thought Sir Kaura and Bo Gardan get more points for their involvement in Lar Deus' downfall. I also felt that Sir Kaura's final act of redemption with Sarah/Yellow Flash was better written than Villamax's saving a young girl.
With all this in mind -- this is also why I feel like I'm just better off not watching Power Rangers and sticking to Super Sentai. After all, I can watch my Super Sentai and just ignore something I dislike. Besides, I still believe that the bigger problem Power Rangers has to why I think it's inferior to its parent show probably due to unmet potential (though I'm Great Professor Biased about it so I don't watch it) would be mostly the people behind them and perhaps their own home country too. Just my opinion, okay?