Tuesday, June 7, 2016

MMPR Season 2 Episode 40: Rangers Back in Time Part 2


Opportunity for Comedic Scenario Cautiously Sidestepped
Giant Rock Proves Little Challenge Against Power Rangers











Last week on Power Rangers, the Ranger Teens were sent an indeterminate time into the past. They were turned back into children and then threw dodgeballs at people wearing pie tins on their chests. Then some stupid camera monster trapped all of them in a picture. Why did Zedd turn back time if he had a monster that could capture them forever? Uh…Well…


Alpha 5 and Zordon try desperately to conjure up a device that can rescue the Ranger Babies from their photographic prison. Alpha 5 curses the fact he was born a generation too early to use a 3D Printer to bring the Rangers back. Zordon offers nothing in the way of suggestion, opting to instead berate his dumbass cyborg. He demands his robo-slave rescue the Rangers from their 8x10 prison quickly. Without Billy offering him all that free labor, he's not going to pull a profit in the fourth quarter. There's a huge order to fill and only Billy's little baby hands can fit inside that sewing machine.

Meanwhile, Photomare stands off-screen and cackles about the picture she's trapped the Ranger Babies in. At least until the wind picks it up and blows it towards Baby Bulk and Skull. She would have leaned over and picked it up you see, but she was in Japan at the time and couldn't reach it. She threatens the children to return her captives, and promises to continue gesturing menacingly at them if they refuse. 

A camera threatens two stupid little kids. Happy 100th episode!

Lord Zedd realizes his monsters are a disadvantage when tasked with doing something, so he sends Goldar to Earth to retrieve that photo. The big golden goon appears in front of the bully babies and demands they give him that image of children. Even though Zedd's turned back time on Earth, it's clear that Goldar has been aging just fine on the Moon. Look at his face!

Goldar mask
Or that mask wasn't meant for close-up shots.

Photomare "shows up" which leaves the baby bullies no way to escape. They call out for mommy, and Goldar quips, "That's a name I've never been called before." Yeah, you're more prone to calling Zedd "daddy" aren't you? Fuckin creep. Anyways, the boys are stuck between Goldar and Japanese footage of a camera yelling at them. You'd expect Goldar to do…anything, but he chooses to gloat over how much more powerful he is than two helpless children. In case you needed proof of how pathetic Goldar has become in Season 2.

Lord Zedd ceases his busy schedule of sitting on his ass to check up on Goldar's progress. Zedd mentions that the galaxy is supposed to be in his hands right now, because he has absolutely no concept of pattern recognition. Squatt and Baboo hear this proclamation and hope that means Zedd might get them some cookies or a box of doughnuts. Thanks for that contribution boys, I'm glad you were able to squeeze out another worthless line this month.

When Zedd takes a look at what's happening on Earth, he sees that jackass Goldar standing around bullying some children instead of stealing the picture. Zedd quips, "You're seven feet tall lamebrain, just take it from them!" Ignoring the obvious exaggeration of Goldar's meager height, I have to admit that line made me laugh. It's as if the script to this episode was making fun of Goldar's obvious stalling.

Alpha 5 completes his Molecular Whatevomatic to restore the Ranger Babies, but Zordon tells him to forget that bullshit. Goldar's in the park, he's rackin' heads, and if Alpha doesn't get down there in a hurry, Bulk and Skull are gonna fall face first into Goldar's sword. Alpha teleports into the park with his Molecular Thingamajig and starts talking shit to Goldar. As Goldar tries to comprehend why this dumbass robot is giving him grief, Alpha blasts a shot of energy at Goldar that freezes him solid. Then Power Rangers remembers they ostensibly have a monster to take care of, and…look. They try their best okay?

Photomare Monster
Happy 100th episode!

As you can see, Bulk and Skull decide to get out of dodge now that this fuckboi automaton is on the loose. Alpha 5 runs after the baby bullies in order to get the photo back, and everyone watching at home wonders why they tuned in this week.

Baby Bulk and Skull hightail it to Angel Grove High (Grade?) School where they can tell someone about all the monsters trying to eat them alive. The duo run into Principal Caplan and beg him to save them from the gorillas, androids, and stock footage that's chasing them. Caplan isn't in the mood for any of their malarkey and sentences the both of them to detention for lying. He demands that the boys both write an essay about the evils of lying, like when your principal spends his entire life trying to hide the fact that he's balding with a shitty-looking wig.

Then this episode ruins everything.

Caplan walks back down the hallway after putting Bulk and Skull in detention. As he turns, Alpha 5 teleports inside of the hallway right next to him. Alpha apologizes before teleporting away, and Caplan continues walking. He stops for a moment and attempts to process the fact he just saw a giant fucking sentient robot slave, but keeps on walking.

Simple premise right? Someone is walking and sees something unbelievable, they keep on walking, then they're surprised. The problem is this scene doesn't give you anything you want from it.

Principal Caplan doesn't make some ridiculous over the top face that I could use for a title image, Caplan doesn't give a nice silly double take, he doesn't rub his eyes and appear confused. Nothing. He looks at a cyborg from beyond the cosmos the same way I look at someone in a crowd I think I know.

Also make sure you don't get a close-up of his surprised face.

Baby Bulk and Skull bemoan the fact that the one time they ever tell the truth, nobody believes them. Baby Bulk lets off some steam by scribbling mustaches on the picture of the Ranger Babies, and Baby Skull asks if they're doomed to be eternally worthless human beings that only serve to be laughed at. A chilling silence fills the room as we see two children choke back the tears they deserve to shed.

Happy 100th Episode!

Alpha 5 appears in the detention hall, leading the boys to scream bloody murder. Alpha soothes their nerves by asking them to look into his Molecular Sledgomatic, which he promises will put them to sleep and leave them remembering none of this. A sentence which I would much prefer never finds its way into my children's karate shows.

Whatever, Alpha's gimmicky multipurpose piece of shit gadget does the trick. Baby Bulk and Skull are out like a light, and Alpha snatches the picture from them. Alpha 5 zaps the picture with his device, and the Ranger Babies are freed from the photograph. I have to admit there was a joke after the kids are released that made me chuckle.

Every joke in the movie Mortdecai.jpg

The Baby Rangers are reasonably unnerved by this godless hunk of metal standing in front of them, aside from Billy who runs up to Alpha and pokes around all of his buttons. I understand that Alpha is a lot more friendly than one of Zedd's monsters, but I don't buy the Ranger Babies immediately listening to what he has to say. They have as much trepidation as the child actors can muster, but they quickly relent and listen to everything this stuttering idiot has to say. If the last thing I ran into was a 6 foot tall photocopier that froze me in a picture, I wouldn't be so quick to chit chat with some UFO-Faced freak.

Speaking of Photomare, she and Goldar soon escape from Alpha 5's freeze ray. Why did it wear off? Because it was built to do whatever the plot needed, and we have footage of a Zord fight to use in a few minutes. I'm more curious what Zedd was doing this whole time. He was bitching at Goldar a minute or two before Alpha showed up, but after Alpha froze his minions we didn't see hide nor hair of him. Did Zedd even realize his soldiers had been paralyzed? Hopefully Zedd wasn't watching, because I can't imagine what would happen to Goldar if word got out that he was bested by the comic relief robot.

Alpha 5 convinces the Ranger Babies who they really are in as much time as it took you to finish this sentence. They instinctively put their lives in the hands of this metal monster and allow him to zap them with his magical bullshit ray. Baby Kim asks if it's going to hurt, and he promises it won't hurt at all. Though he adds they can close their eyes if it would make them feel more comfortable. Did anyone read the lines of this script out-loud before they asked the actors to? Holy shit.

A blast of Alpha's Molecular Plot Device turns the Ranger Babies back into the Ranger Teens, and that's basically all we're going to do with this time travel plot. It's no longer pertinent to the main characters halfway through Part 2 of an episode called "Rangers Back in Time."

Happy 100th Episode!

The Ranger Teens morph and teleport into the park, where Photomare lies in wait for them. Take our word for it. She zaps a bunch of civilians with her photo beam, trapping them inside pictures. Goldar stands idly by and barks out complaints over how big of a loser he is, and bitches about how he's stuck playing second banana to a goddamned camera wearing an octopus for a hat.

Then Rocky calls the monster "flashbulb brain." In case you needed an excuse to turn this one off.

Lord Zedd gets sick of watching the editors play the same four clips of Photomare ad-nauseum, so he mercifully makes the monster into a giant. Rocky calls for the Red Dragon Thunderzord to take on Photomare, while Tommy commands the other Rangers to beat the shit out of Goldar. Well points for mixing things up. Usually Tommy is the one who hands Goldar's nuts back to him on a platter. Now Goldar gets to pretend he's still relevant by losing to five of the Power Rangers.

The Red Dragon Warrior Mode confronts Photomare and the two giants square off. Well that's a lie. Photomare does this instead.

Photomare's Photostare

Oh boy! An evil twin battle. That's one of my favorite things of all. Evil Red Dragon VS. Good Red Dragon. Who knows what'll happen?!

I do, and they're not going to follow up on it. Because of course they aren't.

Goldar calls forth a pack of Putties to defend him against the Rangers, but Tommy promises he'll take all of them out on his own. Yeah trust me, I believe it Tommy. I'm surprised you didn't kill the giant Photomare too. That's when you start to notice something strange. Tommy is the only Ranger fighting. The other four aren't even here right now.

Then we cut to Black, Pink, Blue, and Yellow summoning their Thunderzords without ever engaging Goldar or his Putties. Thanks for that big old cocktease Power Rangers. You're lucky I know why you split the footage like this. But I'll bore everyone with those details later, right now we have a Zord battle to watch!

The Thunder Megazord comes together to battle Photomare and her Copyzord. Well they battle with the Copyzord at least. Photomare seems content to stand in the background while her minion does all the fighting. This battle it spliced together with a really solid fight between the White Ranger and Goldar. For once I actually prefer the Ranger battle over the Zord fight, because the Copyzord doesn't do anything unique against the Thunder Megazord. It might be that I'm mad Photomare is doing nothing in this fight, but we're just watching the Red Dragon Warrior Mode battle the Thunder Megazord and it's exactly what you'd expect.

Oh and speaking of exactly what you'd expect, the Thunder Megazord kills them both with one slash of the Thunder Saber. Has anyone gotten sick of that thing yet? Holy fuck Dairanger would you try mixing things up once in a while?

While the White Ranger emasculates Goldar, Zordon notices some shit is getting whack near the Rock of Time. Zordon claims that the Rock of Time's magic has begun to destabilize the Earth's rotation. A claim that was met with a response of, "Oh bullshit" from the other side of the T.V. screen.

Zordon commands the Power Rangers to destroy that goddamn rock right away. If they don't stop him soon then Aisha and Kimberly won't be allowed to vote anymore. The Rangers are transported to the Rock of Time's location, but are soon confronted by Goldar and more Z-Putties. Tommy legitimately mocks how pathetic Goldar is, but Zedd's lackey claims "I'm the greatest warrior of all!"

Before you groan over how pompous Goldar is, let me explain how the scene ends. As soon as Goldar talks himself up, we cut back to the Moon Palace and hear Lord Zedd groaning over what bullshit that line was. He responds to Goldar's arrogance by screaming, "I CAN'T BELIEVE THAT BUBBLEHEAD SAID THAT!!" The line itself might be corny, but it's incredible how it's presented. Lord Zedd is totally alone in his palace, since Squatt and Baboo are off oiling each other up, but he still feels the need to make fun of how lame Goldar is to nobody in particular. It's fucking great.

Lord Zedd decides to bring in some real heavy hitters to defend the Rock of Time, so he summons some of his most powerful old monsters. Invenusable Fly Trap, Dramole, and Oysterizer. Zedd, are you sure those are the best monsters you've got? You didn't even make two of them! Maybe Oysterizer was just running late for that fish monster jamboree Zedd was throwing a few weeks ago.

The only three monsters who answered Zedd's texts.

The following brawl is actually pretty decent, and makes up for that lame-ass Photomare fight. Not to mention it's got some sweet Ron Wasserman music punctuating the action. The Rangers take on the monsters and Goldar, but they're not able to gain the upper hand at all. Oysterizer uses his pearl rope weapon on Adam and Rocky, Goldar keeps Aisha and Tommy on the ropes, and Billy and Kim battle the Invenusable Flytrap. I'm not entirely sure why Dramole bothered showing up. That socially awkward cretin is probably tweeting all his friends about how he doesn't want to be here and would rather be eating hot pockets at home in bed.

The Rangers band together and realize they're losing this fight pretty goddamned badly. Tommy realizes it's time for his team to do something crazy. Something unprecedented. Something nobody would expect.

They have to use their Power Weapons.

Remember when the Rangers used to bring their Power Weapons out all the time? They'd use them to finish just about every fight in Season 1. Well now they've been relegated to emergency use only. As much as I like seeing them now, it really bums me out that we never see them anymore. The last time they brought out the Power Weapons was to use the Power Blaster against Cannontop, and I barely count that.

I believe Power Rangers was getting complaints from parents for being too violent, so I assume the weapons being used less was part of an attempt to tone that down. Not to mention the fact that the Rangers couldn't interact with half of the monsters this season, but that doesn't mean they couldn't use them on Goldar or something right?

So I guess that's our big celebration…they used their Power Weapons again. Yippee.

happy...100...whatever.

Kim fires an arrow at the Oysterizer and knocks him out of commission. Soon after, Billy and Adam finish off Dramole and Fly Trap with a slash from their weapons too. It doesn't last very long, but fuck it, I got to see those beautiful weapons one last time. Goodnight my dearest arsenal. May a flight of angels sing thee to thine dump.

Tommy and Aisha beat the piss out of Goldar once again, and he retreats after his 98th consecutive loss this week. Congrats dipshit, no wonder Zedd needed monsters to back you up. The Rangers ignore Goldar's jobbin' ass, and discover the location of Zedd's Rock of Time. Billy suggests they use the Power Cannon to destroy it and by some absolute miracle, this works. That's right, the Rangers were able to use a giant bazooka to destroy a static object. What a conclusion.

The Ranger Teens return to Angel Grove High School, where they discuss how being a kid is totally tubular, and growing up fucking blows goats. They notice that Bulk and Skull are still passed out in the detention hall, having been hypnotized by Alpha for an entire goddamned decade I guess? I really don't want to imagine the ramifications of being sent hurtling through the future while you're unconscious.

Principal Caplan asks why they're in detention, and they're unable to give him an answer. Possibly because their brains were recently scrambled by a robot. Or maybe they needed to take a snooze. Who's to say? Caplan arbitraily gets angry at them and makes them write some bullshit on the chalkboard 100 times for…I seriously don't know what. What are they getting punished for. They were telling the truth in the past, and they didn't do anything in the present either. They've been sleeping this whole time! What the fuck is with this ending?!

Haha the two remedial students got in trouble to add a comedic punchline to this script since we wrote ourselves into a corner.

100th episode my ass.




Your Weekly 90's Nostalgia: Power Weapons





Personal Thoughts




First off I wanted to say I hope this one came out okay. I was in a bit of a rush this week due to work reasons, so hopefully this entry is still alright. If not then you can let me know in the comments, I won't mind. I always want you jokers to be honest y'know?

Also, I'm not sure when, but I'll quite possibly be changing the update schedule for the blog entries. Not anything crazy, just switching from Tuesday to some other day of the week. That's to be determined though! I just got a new full time gig lined up and I'm still kind of flying by the seat of my pants. Sorry, nobody cares about that shit. Power Rangers.

Even though it doesn't sound like anything special, I prefer this episode over Part 1. Photomare is an absolute waste of time and the episode is completely dragging its heels until she gets killed, but the material without her isn't half bad. It's nothing special enough for Episode 100, but it also wasn't intended to be. Initially Power Rangers was going to air "Lights, Camera, Action" in the 100th episode slot. Jesus Christ, that piece of shit? It'd be a more joyous celebration if Haim Saban drove up to my house and kicked my pets to death.

I know I often harp on how much I like Sentai footage, but this episode utilizes it in a really shitty way. For once I would have preferred an episode with all US footage instead of the constant awkward cuts back to Photomare, and her utter slog of a Zord battle. I'm sure I show a clear bias towards the Japanese footage, but that doesn't mean you can drop it in anywhere and expect me to cream my jeans over it.

Speaking of US footage, there's something really great revolving around the villains this week. I don't know if it was the script writer or whoever did the voiceover, but there are some really choice lines from Zedd and Goldar this week. Goldar talking about how he's the greatest warrior in the universe and getting shittalked by Zedd? Absolute perfection. Zedd mocking Goldar for dicking around instead of completing the mission? Gorgeous. It's a trend I should start noticing now, because I get the feeling Season 3 is going to present a lot more awesome villain dialogue.

While I bitched about the Sentai footage in this one, I have to compliment Power Rangers for fixing up something that didn't make much sense in the Japanese episode. When Photomare prints off the Red Dragon Thunderzord copy, she originally did so while she confronted the Thunder Megazord. It doesn't really make any sense that she would have a copy of the Red Dragon since she never took a picture of it. The Rangers formed the Thunder Megazord immediately in Dairanger.

Power Rangers has Rocky summon the Red Dragon first so it looks like Photomare is copying the Zord in front of her, and it works way better. Even if it means they had to write the other four Rangers out of the fight for no real reason, it makes the Photomare scene make more sense. Even if it's done a little sloppy, I appreciate the effort. Something I don't find myself saying about this show too often.






3 comments:

  1. The Power Weapons have now went the way of the "Thunder Slingers". That piece of arsenal they have, but they choose to never use.

    "Holy fuck Dairanger would you try mixing things up once in a while?"

    It's no wonder they never made cockpits for the individual Thunderzords. I kind of wish they did and Tommy's wasn't Dairanger footage. Mega-Tigerzord would've been a reuse of the Thunder Megazord cockpit, only that Tommy is in place of Jason/Rocky. Tommy joins them when they form Thunder Ultrazord.

    What does it matter? The Thunder Megazord cockpit is one of the most poorly made ones in-universe wise. It's the only Megazord where every time it tilts, they all fall into one side. That's got to be annoying.

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  2. One tiny thing that stands out to me about this episode is during the big monster fight at the end, Oysterizer's weapon breaks while he's fighting I think Adam. The big ol' ball just goes flying off into the distance.
    But this show being this show, they were too goddamn cheap to fix the prop or do a retake. God bless PR's Ed Wood-level budget.

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  3. I actually liked photomare and I liked that she summoned a red dragonzord to battle the thunderzord

    Fight me

    ReplyDelete