So in liu of the reboot film of the same name Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, I decided to do a marathon of all of the series. Maybe. We’ll see what happens. I’m planning on it. They’re on Netflix.
Obviously, I started with where it all began with the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Now, I did not grow up watching this show. I knew about it, I knew the characters and the rangers etc but I did not watch it religiously. I only watched it when visiting my godbrothers and they were fans. I distinctly remember them fighting each other all of the time while the show played on their tv, I sat and watched, they fought lol.
I watched some of the later shows as I got older. I think the ones I saw the most of was probably S.P.D (black dude was the red ranger, aye) and Mystic Force.
So, this piece is me giving my thoughts on this old classic 90s show. I loved it. Just so you know lol.
The Power Rangers
So I was just going to include the original 5 but I really like Tommy so there.
Jason Lee Scott/Red Ranger: The leader of the group. I found him to be boring sometimes compared to everyone else. He was like the “boy next door/jock” type which isn’t a bad thing at all. I thought he was a great leader, he was kind to everyone, he had a nice body (lol wink), seemed like a cool dude and I thought he was a great fighter in and out of his suit. Austin St. John was the youngest but it wasn’t easy to tell because he held himself so well and wise.
Trini Kwan/Yellow Ranger: Hard to put a label on her, but she was a mixture of things. She was a bit of a tomboy, but also feminine, she was the second smartest in the group, as she was able to understand and translate Billy’s scientific/technical jargon. She assisted him in a lot of his experiments for the team. I liked her a lot too, she was really chill, loyal and kind of passive but very much knew how to kick butt when it was required. I also liked that she was an advocate for the environment. Also yellow! It’s one of my favorite colors. Also her hair! lol I also think she was way prettier than Kimberly. I remember all of the boys having such crushes on Kimberly, or now that I’m an adult, I see people talk about how they loved Kimberly and I’m like… yeah she’s cute and cool but TRINI IS AWESOME AND BEAUTIFUL! R.I.P Thuy Trang.
Zack Taylor/Black Ranger: I would consider him to be the “second in command” and “cool dude” of the group. I liked his whole vibe. At first I was like wait… because I wasn’t sure if they were trying to be like “yeah we have a black guy as a power ranger… albeit the black ranger but ya know” or if it was just genuine either by Walter Jones as the character or a collaboration. He was very “pro black”, but it was subtle. I don’t know if anyone noticed that back then, or if they rewatch and notice it now. He wore black to coincide with his ranger color but he had a lot of freedom with that. He often wore the colors of the Pan-African flag, he had that low top fade (second season he had twists), he listened to and loved hip hop (he even had a martial arts style “Hip Hop Kido”). I loved all of that about him. I loved that he was so affectionate with everyone, he was kind, and so cute. I liked how he had a hard time impressing the girl he wanted to impress but he was so genuine with his affections for her. I loved Zack.
Kimberly Ann Hart/Pink Ranger: The “girly girl” of the group. Kimberly is the only one who does gymnastics (I liked that about her). Kimberly was always sweet to everyone, even at times Bulk and Skull (though everyone pretty much treated them the same way). She was pretty enthusiastic about everything, except being a ranger in the beginning. Along with Jason, I found her boring but she grew on me as the show progressed. I liked her faith and strong loyalty in her friends, I liked that she was optimistic and her relationships with the others, especially Trini and Tommy were so cute.
Billy Cranston/Blue Ranger: I love Billy! He is the “nerd” of the group. I really like his arc. He starts off unsure of himself physically. He ran from the Putties when they attacked and that his fighting was kind of weak (both him and Kimberly were the weakest fighters) but he grew. He would wear baggy clothes, glasses and his hair was kind of shaggy, and while he has physically changed, he’s still Billy. Over the three seasons (I’m in season 3), his fighting has improved, his posture is straighter, he is definitely more confident, he’s stopped wearing glasses (though no one has commented on that unless I missed it lol) and his clothing choices have improved. Also, Billy may have been the “nerd” of the group but he pulled the ladies, even more so when he started growing up a bit more. This dude is also like a friggin genius because some of the stuff he makes, or the things he does to help out in the show I’m like “dude… how do you know how to do that?? Why are you still a high school student??” I hope they didn’t think I wouldn’t notice that Billy had a nice body under those baggy clothes they had him wear lol.
Tommy Oliver/Green(White) Ranger: Tommy is so cool. I would say he gives off this “bad boy” vibe even though he’s not a bad boy. His introduction was great, it’s in this karate competition or something and he does that kick he used to always do. He’s then put under a spell and made into the Evil Green Ranger to destroy the Rangers and Zordon and all that. Him being evil, it was pretty great because he was so mean to everyone and it cracked me up. I’m sure if I was a kid watching it I would be a bit intimidated by him. He had a nice little redemption arc and started creating friendships with the others, most notable his relationship with Kimberly (so cute) but obviously he and Jason had a hard time in the beginning. I liked that Tommy was forgetful because it almost seemed like he was perfect so that helped. He also had some emotional storylines with his green ranger powers fading. He leaves the show like two times. I was upset. However, he comes back for a final time as the White Ranger and becomes the leader of the Rangers. There was a lot of focus on him, which I didn’t mind because he’s really interesting and cute (why is his hair so long and gorgeous *swoons*).
So like upfront, I was highly upset about this change. I’m going to go into more about this later but in terms of the characters, as soon as they were introduced in the show, I knew they were going to be replacing Jason, Zack and Trini. That first episode I was like ugh. UPSET!
Rocky DeSantos/Red Ranger: To be honest, I don’t dislike Rocky but so far there’s nothing really to identify him. I can’t really say he took over for Jason in terms of his attributes because Tommy is the leader so he’s not the leader, I wouldn’t even consider him second in command even though he’s the Red Ranger which automatically makes him second in command and there are times where he’s treated like it but it’s by default. There’s nothing really memorable about him other than the way he shouted “Tyrannosaurus” in the Morphin because that makes me laugh. He’s sweet though and has a nice smile.
Aisha Campbell/Yellow Ranger: She really annoyed me in the beginning, first of all, I did not like the way her hair was being styled. Once she started wearing those braids/twists, it was like her personality also changed a bit lol, I also peeped her wearing a Pan-African hat in an episode. Even though she was replacing Zack as the black character I don’t think she makes up for his absence. She does seem really resourceful and I do like her sassiness that happens sometimes. She loves animals (She volunteers at an animal shelter) and her friends, especially evident in the way she got her parents to let Kimberly stay with them the rest of the school year. Aisha is closest with Adam and Rocky as they were all friends before, and became best friends with Kimberly. She grew on me.
Adam Park/Black Ranger: I like Adam. I think next to Tommy he’s the second best fighter. He seems to be kind of shy, especially with girls and has a problem with confidence. Unfortunately he’s kind of a background character though he seems like he would have been really cool if he was able to get a bit more attention. At times it seems like he has a stronger friendship with Billy and Aisha but it’s hard to tell sometimes lol.
Katherine Hillard/Pink Ranger: I don’t like her. I’m not done with the season yet but she’s annoying. Maybe she’ll grow on me the way the others did but so far, nope. She’s not interesting, there’s nothing that really stands out about her. I think that’s the problem with the replacements, they’re not that interesting as characters. I guess as kids it’s not that important but I think the show has major replay value, so outside of nostalgia, I don’t see how anyone could really really like Kat. She started off evil, had cat powers and everything, she was under Rita’s spell, obviously has a thing for Tommy, but once she sees how things are affecting Kimberly, she starts to break out of the spell. Kimberly even forgives her. My thing is… she steals Kim’s picture of her and Tommy and she tore it in half and kept Tommy’s half. So… does she still have it? Did Kimberly not realize it was gone? Will this ever come full circle? Can Tommy know that she is a creeper and make sure he doesn’t fall for her… because just no. Tommy and Kimberly forever.
I mean there are many side characters, but the ones I’m going to talk about are really all that matter.
Zordon and Alpha 5: I mean I think there’s only so much I can say about Zordon lol. He’s a big floating head. I do have to say I think it’s interesting and funny how at times, he doesn’t reveal things to the Rangers that he surely had to know beforehand. Or he says stuff can’t happen but they figure out a way… lol it’s funny. I love Alpha 5, he’s so cute and I loved how he pulled all the ladies in that Halloween episode. Also the episode where he’s reprogrammed to be evil, oh man I thoroughly enjoyed that episode.
Bulk and Skull: They are a package deal and yeah they’re fine. I mean, they’re annoying like those side characters are supposed to be but in season three they’re a bit more tolerable since they’re junior police officers. I think it’s funny how many times they have found out who the power rangers are but something has happened to make them forget it. It also seems that Jason Narvy (Skull) was the better actor out of the two, especially with the accents he could pull off, surprised me each time. I like their friendship and silliness with each other.
Obviously there is an assortment of monsters but I’m just going to touch on the villains. At least the main ones.
Rita Repulsa: Oh man, I love her. She’s so funny. I think it’s funny how in the first season whenever she spoke, her words never really matched up with her mouth movements. In the third season though, they seem to replace the first actress, which was a bit of a bummer because it was so funny but ya know, you get over it. Both actresses worked well for this character.
Lord Zedd: He looks like raw ground turkey but he started off intimidating but once he linked up with Rita, he wasn’t as intimidating because she’s so funny and them together is really funny. But I feel like he would have been a really scary villain but ya know, the show is for kids and stuff. The episode when Tommy goes to save Kimberly after she was kidnapped, Lord Zedd and Tommy face off… that episode, that fight, could have been much more brutal. But I guess… kids tv and what not. I liked that he made his monsters out of actual stuff instead of creating monsters from… clay.
Goldar: He’s such a brown noser lol but he’s funny. I liked how when Lord Zedd came back he dropped Rita, or how he kept trying to find out why Zedd seemed to love her, and once he finds out what happens, he tries to make it go back to the way it was but Zedd comes to actually like her which he just accepts. Cracks me up. Also his antagonistic relationship with everyone… hilarious. He also has those wings but never actually uses them.
I think one of the strongest aspect of the show is the friendships/relationships between the characters. It’s what makes them work anyway so without the friendships, it’s not interesting outside of them being in their suits and fighting.
Trini & Kimberly: I really liked their friendship. As they were the only girls, they had each other to be “girls” with, in terms of wearing makeup, talking about boys they like and just being around each other. I liked their loyalty to each other, how well they knew each other and the fact that they had each other’s backs.
Trini & Billy: Probably one of my favorite friendships. They worked so well together, I also loved the fact that Trini could understand Billy’s science/techno talk and she would translate to the others. I think this is also one of the reasons why I was upset with her leaving because there was no one left who was near the same level of Billy’s intelligence. Adam took over helping him but it wasn’t the same. Plus, their chemistry was great, I think you could tell they were great friends. Plus, she was very protective of him.
Jason & Zack: Another favorite friendship. This one was evident that Walter and Austin were friends outside of the show because it showed. I loved how they had each other’s backs, which is why I considered Zack to be the “second in command” because he would always step up, or if Jason was in trouble, Zack would be the first to volunteer to help him or get him. Jason taught Zack martial arts, they sparred together… it was just so natural. I love bro-ships.
Tommy/Kimberly: It was love at first sight for the two of them lol. We only saw them technically kiss twice but I think that was okay because any other time, Tommy definitely looked at her with hearts in his eyes. Or he would kiss her forehead or cheek, or he was always standing right next to her, or slightly touching her. He would always come to her aid, volunteer first to help her, he was so supportive of her and her dreams. That’s why it was so sad to me when she left because he wanted her to be happy but obviously he wanted her to be there. Kimberly always called him first (after Trini lol) if she needed support. She always looked for/to him when she was scared, she would always be near him, be slightly touching him… I can’t they’re just so cute. I was so emotional when Kimberly left because I loved them together. Like I said, it wasn’t like in your face, I don’t even think they ever went on a proper date. Plus, I like the fact that they pretty much stayed together the entire time Kimberly was on the show. I just started Mighty Morphin Alien Rangers (lol shows you that I’m writing this while watching) and there better not be a Tommy/Katherine thing. She can like him all she wants but he belongs to Kimberly!! It better not be reciprocated.
Jason & Tommy: Now, I don’t think they’re best friends or anything like the show kind of tried to push, at least to me. In the beginning, it was obvious that they were intimidated by each other and I think Tommy tried to outdo Jason at times. After doing a mission together, their friendship got stronger and I liked the fact that Jason tried whatever he could to save Tommy when he was losing his green ranger powers. I think they worked well together, being the best two fighters on the team (followed by Zack). They taught a martial arts class together and it was cute how they worked off each other to be successful.
I mean the other friendships are nice but these are the ones that stand out to me the most. Tommy and Billy would go on here next but I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that David Yost and Jason David Frank worked together for a long time and it translated.
Of course classic rangers suits which I love. I like their costumes outside of their suits their clothes are very much 90s teens attire. I mentioned Zack’s clothes and how he often wore Pan-African colors and that he had a bit more freedom due to his color being black. Everyone else wore colors that matched with their ranger color. Jason wore red clothes, at least red tops. Trini wore yellow outfits (sometimes yellow hair bands). Billy wore overalls a lot (baggy clothes, hiding his physique lol) and blue flannel. Kimberly wore pink colored things. Tommy wore green (sometimes green bandanas), when he turned to the White Ranger, he wore white shirts and sometimes white outfits. Same with the others that showed up, they didn’t really start wearing their colors until they became rangers. I don’t particularly care for the Power Ninja outfits they wear after they find Ninjor and get their Ninja powers, at least not with their entire faces covered.
LOL the theme song is already catchy and iconic “Go go power rangers” but it was a nice fit for the show. It used to trip me out how when Zack would fight, they would put a hip hop or electronic beat on when he was on screen but I ended up liking it. I still wonder if Walter Jones had a hand in that. Later, they started having actual singing songs during certain fights. When the rangers would fight the putties, there was a song… cracked me up. Same with the Tengas’ song. Tripped me out. All so very catchy.
Okay, so I find all of this so interesting. I like knowing what goes on behind the scenes just as much as I like watching what’s actually on the screen. So I knew about people leaving and all of that but I didn’t know why so once I started watching, I paid a bit more attention.
Black=black ranger, Asian=yellow ranger: These two were the most notable, I read that Austin St. James is part Native American being the red ranger was included in this particular debate. I remember thinking it was funny too, even as I got older, I wondered why that happened that way. However, I read an article with Walter Jones who stated that it wasn’t intentional, at least not on Trini’s part lol. She was originally portrayed in the pilot by Hispanic-American actress Audri Dubois who later quit after asking for more money so they began casting for another actress who just happened to be Asian. Jones also said that no one really said anything about him being a black guy playing the black ranger until Thuy Trang was cast. lol I find it funny now. I do think it’s an interesting coincidence but it doesn’t bother me. It doesn’t seem malicious. But ya know later… after the replacements came, we still managed to have an African-American actress and an Asian actor.
Zack Taylor (African-American) = Black ranger —–> Adam Park (Asian)=Black ranger
Trini Kwan (Asian) = Yellow ranger –> Aisha Campbell (African-American)= Yellow ranger
Jason, Trini, Zack’s departure: So, from what I read, Austin St. John, Walter Jones and Thuy Trang tried to negotiate their contracts for more pay once the show started to gain extreme popularity. You would have to be blind if you didn’t think this show was popular. But they worked long hours, they did not receive good pay and Austin St. John said Saban’s idea of “good working conditions” was having good food. They probably wouldn’t even get Christmas off and the payment could equate working the drive thru in fast food. So St. John, Jones and Trang tried to negotiate their contracts, because of the popularity, the merchandise alone, they should receive better conditions, including payment, which I understand and agree with. They wanted to be a union show once the popularity picked up but it didn’t happen, at least not while they were there so they negotiated out of the show.
So all of this happens and it’s so plain to see what happens when the three start getting phased out of the show. In the first half of season two, they’re there without problem but then we’re introduced to Aisha, Rocky and Adam (Who are of course competing in a Martial Arts competition and are from a neighboring city) and we hardly see Jason, Trini and Zack unless it’s in their Power Ranger suits and even then they hardly spoke.
Any time we saw them, it was recycled footage and it was so plain to see because in the beginning of the season Zack had twists and in the recycled footage, his hair was back in that low top fade. Or they were shot from behind in which you never saw their face.
There was an episode where Trini spoke but the camera was from behind and low, the stand in actually spoke and it definitely was not the real Trini, then quick cut and they show us Trini.
Tommy returns as the White Ranger and Zordon says he’s the new leader of the power rangers and Jason did not react to this news, which I thought was weird. Turns out, that footage was shot because when Tommy returned, he wasn’t going to be the new leader which is why Jason doesn’t react but Zordon’s dialogue was later redubbed for him to say “Tommy is the White Ranger and the new leader”.
Then we keep seeing Aisha, Adam and Rocky (I was annoyed because I could see it happening).
THEN they bring in this Peace Conference thing up and of course all of the students of Angel Grove have entered and OF COURSE Jason, Trini and Zack have all gotten chosen. OF COURSE. Then of course Kimberly, Billy and Tommy go to find them to tell them they were selected because ya know, their three other best friends are not in the Juice Bar with them like every other time and when they find them, it’s a far away shot with the sun setting so we can’t see their faces and obviously that guy was not Austin St. John because his arms and shoulders were nowhere near as big.
One last quest, we never see them out of their ranger costumes, maybe except once and it’s recycled footage. Then ya know, of course they have to transfer their powers to Aisha, Adam and Rocky and when this happens, they’re still in their suits, then they just teleport away. No goodbye nothing. We just see them getting out of a cab and going into the airport.