Friday, June 24, 2016

MMPR Season 2 Episode 42: The Wedding Part 2



Snoozing Sorcerer Woken By Feather
Sociopathic Android Becomes Most Relatable Character in Show














Last week on Power Rangers, the Ranger Teens were shipped off to Australia because they sold the most girl scout cookies or something. While they took in all the sights the camera crew had time to film, Lord Zedd began his centennial nap to recharge his evil magic juices. While Zedd snoozed, Rita Repulsa landed back on the Moon Palace where she concocted a plan to turn Lord Zedd into Al Bundy with a love potion and lots of unenthusiastic sex. To keep the Power Rangers occupied, Finster inserted a CD into Alpha 5, which turned him into a rude little shit. The evil Alpha sent the Power Rangers to a spooky theater in Angel Grove where they were ambushed by a bunch of old monsters. Unable to teleport away or use their weapons, the Rangers pray they'll survive, if only to get a chance to brutally murder Alpha for his kung-fu treachery.


Trapped in the Specter Theater, the Power Rangers decide they should try to do something entertaining for once. They split up and battle the onslaught of monsters that have cornered them in an attempt to wear them down. It took this episode less than a minute to give me exactly what I wanted from this premise, so kudos to "The Wedding Part 2." The way this show botches cliffhangers, I expected the monsters to only exist in our heroes' imaginations and disappear after the opening credits concluded.

The Rangers get into a nice juicy onslaught with the revived monster army. White Ranger battles Soccadillo, Pink fights Invenusable Fly Trap, Blue and Black fight Dramole and Saliguana, and Yellow fights…Robogoat? Where did he come from? Did he hear that his old buddy Goldar would be at the wedding and decided to drop by? Maybe the writers thought of a few more goat puns they could fit into a script and demanded someone dig that old lamb suit out of the warehouse. Whatever floats their goat.

Inside of the Command Center, ~Fiendish~ Alpha 5 gleefully watches the Rangers' futile battle against the horde of oncoming rubber suits. The mischief-making mechanoid comments that this spectacle is "Even better than cable TV. And cheaper too." Something I'd imagine Haim Saban said verbatim when pitching this show to potential consumers.

Zordon, still wearing a silly blue flattop and glasses, demands to know why his robo-slave just incarcerated 6 of the finest child soldiers this side of Kosovo. Alpha remains silent until Zordon asks why he would do something like this to his only friends. The word "friends" completely sets Alpha 5 off as he rants against the Rangers teleporting around and having all the fun while he's cooped up in some shitty desert laboratory with  a puffy blue mutant face in a fishtank.

While this is all presumably due to the reprogramming CD Finster put in Alpha, it's interesting to hear some actual character come from this jittery twat. He's shown a desire to get out of the Command Center and go on his own adventures in episodes like "The Wanna-Be Ranger", and "Life's A Masquerade." I don't think it's too unbelievable to assume these feelings of neglect are at least partially genuine.

I know that this show operates on a formula of every character acting like a goody two-shoes dork, but this outburst almost seems cognizant of that problem. Alpha 5 is acting out because he's constantly forced to do nothing but spout out one-dimensional stock catchphrases while the Power Rangers are the ones doing impressive superheroics. It's the most believable thing they've done with this sentient immortal robot and I'm loving every second of it.

This ends your weekly dose of "Reading Too Much Into Things in a Baby Karate Program"

Deep in the far reaches of space, Rita cackles to herself over Zedd's predicament. She posits that once he says "I do" he won't be doing much of anything anymore.

Oof. Did you lose your ability to craft one-liners inside that dumpster Rita? Sweet Jesus.

Our heroes continue their valiant battle against the monsters, but are unable to make any headway. The Power Rangers bundle together as they're surrounded by the monster legion yet again. Soccadillo suggests finishing them off now, but Grumble Bee retorts that they're supposed to be Rita's present to Zedd. Robogoat asks why they were brought back from the depths of Hell for such a ridiculous plan, and Eye Guy says something about eyes. Peckster loudly laughs in an attempt to mask the pain he feels inside, while hoping the other monsters don't notice the obvious façade he's putting on. All of them remain ignorant except for Saliguana. Saliguana knew. Saliguana always knew. If only he had the courage to say something.

Oh right, Rita and Zedd are getting married. Instead of expressing any form of shock that their former arch-nemesis has returned from space, the Rangers offer some meaningless dialogue to confirm what the audience already knows. Aisha very blatantly states, "So that's what this is all about. Rita and Zedd getting married!" Instead of a line that would be a bit more realistic coming from her, "Who the fuck is Rita?"

Well I'll tell you who the fuck Rita is. She's the intergalactic space witch whose only method of waking up Lord Zedd is what follows.

What is she even tickling?

When Zedd awakens, he notices Rita and succumbs to the drugs she put into his system by immediately falling in love with her. Rita even turns to face the audience and remark, "It worked!" As if we're watching "Ferris Bueller's Day Off." Actually I'd be a fan of recasting that movie with the Moon Crew. So long as Squatt can be in the Jeffrey Jones role, everything else will fall into place.

The formerly ferocious Lord Zedd turns into a flowery dipshit as he declares his love for Rita. How absolutely gorgeous she is, how he never noticed her beauty before, and how her beauty compares to a Summer's day or some other hogwash. Since we only have twenty minutes this week, he immediately begs Rita to become his wife. She shrugs off the fact that his nether regions must smell like sweaty melted rubber and accepts his noble offer.

Zedd summons Goldar to arrange the wedding, but Goldar is less than excited to see Rita Repulsa back in his personalized subjugation chair. Not to mention that the last time Goldar saw Rita, he had just double-crossed her something fierce and encouraged her imprisonment in a space trash can.

Oh man, do you guys remember Squatt and Baboo? They heard about this wedding and want in, since their only chance at interacting with other living creatures is in the vicinity of an open bar. Squatt asks if he can be the "flower beast", and Baboo asks if he can be the "monkey of dishonor." Two lines that are so utterly atrocious I can barely believe a human being was paid for writing them.

Those aren't even fucking puns. They're just replacing a word with another word in the….Jesus Christ I hate you two.

Guarantee you Squatt is currently not wearing pants

Lord Zedd declares that Goldar will act as his "Worst Man," which is bullshit because I've filled that role flawlessly for years. Goldar will have to put on an absolutely flawless wedding for Zedd's soon-to-be queen, and he damn sure better not have it in some god damned church. 

Though things are looking good for Rita and Zedd's wedding, the monsters have somehow managed to lose track of the Power Rangers. How? Well Kim gave some one-off line about a hidden stairwell they found in this theater a while back. One that Kimberly and Tommy found when they snuck out of a showing of D2 and Tommy took her flying V card.

We don't see any of the escaping or confusion it causes the monsters or anything you would want to see, but isn't it equally interesting if characters explain what might have happened instead of watching it yourself?

No.

The monsters continue their hunt for the Power Rangers, and we treated to a brief scene of Robogoat and Snizard exploring the theater. First Robogoat comes out of nowhere and now Snizard is palling around. Did Snizard wake up from an Opium haze to see he missed a call from Finster? Maybe some monsters are simply more reliable than others. Robogoat even has a line that hints at that when he claims the reason the Rangers escaped is because of "That stupid Peckster."

Do you know how desperately I want to know the inner workings of these monsters and their awful existence? Imagine Soccadillo chilling with a cigarette while he and Grumble Bee shittalk Dramole and Peckster. Eye Guy is the respected veteran monster who everybody listens to because he was in this from the beginning man. If I had the chance I'd hang out with Robogoat in a second. You know he's the kind of monster to cut loose and make sure all his friends are getting action in the bar before he's settled in. Please leave a comment about which monster you would most like to be your good friend. Serious comments only.

Rita proclaims that Finster needs to cook up some more monsters for her to keep the Rangers busy while she gets hitched to Zedd. Was this scene supposed to come earlier when new monsters were popping up out of nowhere? It might explain Robogoat and Snizard's sudden appearance. Or maybe the editor didn't think it made one lick of difference because nobody other than me would notice new monsters showing up in Part 2.

Rita also tells Finster she wants these monsters to be generous and willing to bring her lots of presents before awkwardly proclaiming, "I like presents!" It's a bizarre outburst that is only saved by Finster's adorable delivery of a line directed at the audience, "She's totally lost her cookies." God bless you, you sheepdog faced little monster.

~Evil~ Alpha 5 gets bored of watching the Power Rangers, a sentiment I'm starting to relate to, and checks back in on Australia. He notices Bulk and Skull stupiding their way around the continent and decides they should be subjected to some fun too. He notes that "Tweedle-Dumb and Tweedle-Dumber" deserve a chance to see what the down under is really like.

I'll admit, that was a pretty good slam on Bulk and Skull from Bad Alpha. 

Unfortunately this doesn't lead to a scene of Bulk and Skull being devoured by the godless Homunculi that inhabit Australia, but a wacky moment where the two are stranded in the wilderness and come face to face with stock-footage of a kangaroo. I say stock-footage because I can't even tolerate this show trying to play games with me. They're pointing off-screen at something from a nature documentary, Power Rangers. Don't try and fuck with me. Oh well, I guess this show knows how to do one thing well, and that's have people react to stock footage of something that isn't really there.

Though Power Rangers does deserve some credit. I assumed they'd be too cheap to film Bulk and Skull with any wildlife, and was happy to be proven wrong.

Bulk wants some homemade Vegemite

Back on the Moon Palace, Rita and Zedd toast with a glass of their favorite drink: Dry ice. Rita informs Zedd that she's captured the Power Rangers inside of an abandoned theater, in case the audience had forgotten that the past three times it was established in this episode. Goldar pops up in the background and comes to the obvious conclusion that Rita is scheming something fierce. He declares that his only course of action is to get rid of her before she tries to get rid of him. A pretty natural idea for his character to put focus towards, and one I'm absolutely astonished this show followed up on.

With the episode half over, the Rangers finally find an escape path deep in the basement of the Specter Theater. Aisha says they had better run, because she can hear the monsters coming after them. It's a shame the audience can't hear that as well, or perhaps we might be able to get involved in some of this attempt at tension.

Finster pops up to inform Rita and Zedd that the Power Rangers have escaped. While Zedd fumes over his bungling monsters, Rita suggests a brilliant scheme that nobody on this show could have ever conceived of. Zedd can just make the monsters grow! My God Rita, what would the villains do without an intellect like yours backing them up?

Formulaic or not, this scenario has me excited. Zedd's about to make some old monsters grow, and we've got a plethora of baddies to choose from. Which of these classic creatures is he going to use to finish off our heroes this time?

Peckster Rhinoblaster grow
Why do I keep getting my hopes up?

Goddamnit. Peckster? Fucking Peckster? Don't get me wrong, Rhinoblaster is awesome, but this is the first time we've seen him in the episode. They put him with Peckster? That stuttering jack-off who caught his beak in a goddamned balloon? This shithead doesn't deserve to be anywhere near the battlefield. This chucklehead is about half a notch above fucking Squatt and Baboo. 

Not to mention Zedd claims he'll send his monsters into the "abandoned city." The what? What does that even mean? Is that a line solely meant to censor potential building destruction during the Zord fight? I mean probably, but what a stupid thing to say. I didn't buy it when Nappa blew up a town full of people looking at him, I'm not going to buy it when a crow and a rhino are throwing around giant robot samurai. I can only suspend my disbelief so far.

Ah but just wait a minute there my lovely readers! Peckster and Rhinoblaster are Zyu2 monsters. They're about to fight against the Zord fleet from Dairanger, don't you remember what that means?

Another shitty spliced-together fight between two opponents who will never be on screen with each other! It's been too long!

Well, that's not entirely accurate this time. I'm amazed to admit it, but the editors at Power Rangers seem to have realized how godawful those battles looked and decided to step up their game a little bit. It's not great looking, but Peckster and Rhinoblaster VS. Thunder Megazord and White Tigerzord actually works out to be almost acceptable.

Maybe it's because with multiple opponents you can change things up a bit before you become bored of one lame monster, or maybe it's because the show has gotten better overall. That's possible right? A lot of the monsters' actions seem more like setups for attacks they never use, but at least we see them doing something. It's leagues ahead of the garbage they subjected us to in early Season 2.

Maybe I'm getting soft in my old age.

The Thunder Megazord blasts Peckster with its Thunderbolt fireball, and the Thunder Megazord stands around while Rhinoblaster berates how pathetic the other five Rangers are. This repeats for as long as the episode needs to continue padding to fulfill its runtime before we cut back to ~Evil~ Alpha 5 in the Command Center.

Zordon tries to reason with Alpha that the Rangers are in serious danger and need help, but Alpha responds by shutting off Zordon's communication tube and banishing him to the Shadow Realm. With one overinflated asshole out of the way, Alpha focuses on the other 6. He taps a bunch of buttons on the Command Center console and causes a short-circuit in the energy supply of the Zords. In case you couldn't tell, this happens to the Rangers in the Thunder Megazord cockpit.

Maybe Zordon could have installed seatbelts.

With Alpha draining the Zords' energy, Peckster and Rhinoblaster fire a barrage of attacks that knock the Rangers out of their mecha. Included in these attacks is a ridiculous line from Rhinoblaster towards the Rangers. Just as he's about to slug the Thunder Megazord, he exclaims "No Judy, but here's PUNCH!"

If you want a joke that kids are sure not to get, and adults are sure to groan at, you've come to the right show.

So now that Alpha 5 has got the Rangers right where he wants them, there's only one thing left to do. Teleport them right back into the Specter Theater. Why? Because we already rented out the set for the weekend, we're not shooting somewhere else. We're filming here tonight, we're filming here tomorrow, and we're filming here as long as the guy who owns this building lets us pay him in autographs from the Power Rangers. DON'T ROLL YOUR EYES AT ME JOHNNY! I'LL BOSCH YOUR FUCKING BRAINS IN IF YOU GIVE ME LIP ONE MORE GODDAMNED TIME!

The Rangers bemoan the horrific Möbius strip that their life has become, and it turns out Rita is feeling the same way. She talks to Finster about how terrifying it is to think about getting married to Zedd. She discusses how the old scrap of heap is a rea-hold on a second what did she just call him? A real scrap of heap? How cheap is this goddamned show that it couldn't shoot that line again? Not to mention the fact that you're dubbing Rita anyway. Why not have the voice actress doing that line say it right? So what if it doesn't match up perfectly? It'll look a lot better than "scrap of heap" sounds.

Billy tries desperately to get back in touch with Zordon and Alpha while the other five Rangers sit on the stairs and accept that this duology is going to turn into a trilogy. Tommy informs his team that there's strength in numbers, and that's the best he can offer in terms of a rousing speech. Stick to talking about karate, dickhead.

Inside of Zedd's palace, the wedding festivities have finally gotten underway. The set has been decorated with all sorts of horribly cheap Halloween props, with a couple of mice and snakes squirming around to make it seem spooky or whatever. I'd say it looks more like Lord Zedd is an out of work Kindergarten teacher trying to seem scary, but to each their own. I hope Rita's prepared, because as soon as Zedd puts the ring on her finger, he's going to put her hand in a bowl full of spaghetti that feels just like wooooooorrrrrmmms!!!

Goldar bemoans his soulmate choosing someone who will never love him as much as he could. He fishes through a bowl of snakes and notes that the wedding at least has some "decent grindage." A word I thought didn't exist until I googled it three seconds ago. Why is Goldar using phrases more befitting a Pauly Shore comedy? I couldn't even begin to fathom.

Zedd tells Goldar to stop talking about the weasel and invite the guests into his parlor this instant. Goldar, with his head practically in his hands, requests that the monsters make their way into the chamber to celebrate the unholy union of Zedd and Rita. When the monsters arrive, the festivities get underway. By festivities I mean guys sweating in rubber suits mingling in the middle of an Ed Wood-level set.

Do you think anybody on set that day felt dignity?

Inside of the Specter Theater, Peckster and Rhinoblaster reappear to mock the Rangers. They also turn to the camera and thank the audience for tuning in this week where nothing of value happened other than a Zord battle that ended unceremoniously, and a series of characters reiterating information we already knew.

The monsters promise that next week's episode will have an actual progression to this storyline, but the look in Rhinoblaster's eye leads me to believe we're in for a four-parter. Then the week after that, maybe we can even get a fifth part out of this. Hell, why don't we keep the Rangers inside this theater forever? Every time they escape, we can send them right back inside of the theater. They can get new Zords periodically so we can keep selling toys, but when they leave the Zords where are they going? Right back in the theater baby. You thought this show was formulaic before? You ain't seen nothing yet motherfuckers.



TO BE CONTINUED



Your Weekly 90's Nostalgia: Grindage



Personal Thoughts


This episode is kind of tough to describe. Whenever I describe it, it sounds like a complete piece of shit waste of time that's filled to the brim with filler. While the latter might be true, I can't even feasibly call this a piece of shit. It's absolutely not a necessary episode, but it was still enjoyable all the same. The fight with the monsters in the Specter Theater was nice, and I enjoyed Bulk and Skull getting stranded in the wilderness. Other than that though, there was enough enjoyable dialogue and character moments to elevate this from your standard filler episode. Well done all around.

There isn't a lot left to talk about with this episode since it covers so much of the same ground as last weeks, but it's interesting to note that none of the Power Rangers appear unmorphed in this one. For a series of episodes that is so dedicated to stripping the Rangers of their powers, it sure seems happy to keep them in their rainbow pajamas. Comes with the territory when you're filming a movie deep in Australia.

Oh yeah and one of my favorite things happened in this episode. One of the monster suits being filmed was clearly in bad shape, this time it's Invenusable Fly Trap. Check the poor thing out.







6 comments:

  1. You really love Power Ranger monsters, don't you?

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  2. Well I feel like Snizzard could get you a good deal on meth. You know, he's also a hard working monster who has to provide for his 3 sons one of who is a deliquent, the middle child is an insufferable genius, and the youngest is "precious."

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yeah, I'm totally down with Eye Guy. The puns alone would keep you entertained for days.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You still have Mr. Ticklesneezer.

    YOU ALL STILL HAVE MR. TICKLESNEEZER

    ReplyDelete
  5. Stay away from my goodies.

    ReplyDelete