Saturday, July 23, 2016

MMPR Season 2 Episode 46: Return of the Green Ranger Part 3

H20 Sends Power Rangers Over Budget
Demonic Hair Demon Bent on Murder Given Second Chance

Last week on Power Rangers, an evil clone of Tommy donned the mantle of the Green Ranger. The Clone Tommy managed to defeat the actual Tommy with the help of his horribly balding master. The Wizard of Deception then went back in time and assaulted the other five Ranger Teens with some shitty looking Rat Monsters. Then the Clone Tommy blew on his Dragon Dagger for a minute or two until the episode's runtime ran out.

This week's installment begins with Rita sitting on Zedd's lap and straddling him with her big witch buttcheeks. Leave it to Power Rangers to always lead with its strongest material.

Zedd and Rita's lust for one another soon devolves into childish bickering over who came up with the idea to send the Wizard of Deception to fight the Power Rangers. It's a gag that I was expecting to overstay its welcome by about 20 minutes, but Power Rangers respects the audiences' time for once and keeps the feud to a minimum. Thank you Power Rangers, I appreciate you taking me into consideration in the 42nd minute I've wasted on this miniseries. 

Zedd contacts the Wizard of Deception and asks how things are going. The Wizard responds in tears that his wife has left him and taken their kid with her. All because of the Wizard of Deception's "problem" with alcoholism and an inability to find steady employment. Then after an uncomfortable silence, Wizard realizes Zedd was talking about the Clone Tommy situation and informs him that's going just ducky.

After Clone Tommy's 78th consecutive hour of flute blowing, we finally get to see the big D back in action. My toes begin to curl as I witness the goddamned Dragonzord emerge once again. It took them three weeks, but this dumbass show finally got to the meat of what I wanted in a Green Ranger revival.

Also he gets to splash some Japanese guys.

Leave those Mettools alone!

The most beautiful moment during Dragonzord's revival comes when a couple of extras dressed as dock workers react to his appearance. One of them uses a bullhorn to call out for everyone to evacuate the area, and then he and his extra associate are apparently hit by a wave of water erupting from the Dragonzord's emergence. I say apparently because neither of them react as though they were hit by water, and it's very obviously just a terrible effect of a wave crashing overlaid on the footage of the extras. How in the fuck is this show so goddamned cheap that it was unable to afford some clown off-camera with a bucket of water? Oh shit I forgot. We're still filming in Australia. I imagine water must be 300 bucks a quart down there. Forget I said anything.

Not only that, the dock worker extras don't even react to this tidal wave gif hitting them. It's the stupidest looking thing and I don't know how it could possibly look any cheaper. It makes the Devil in Spawn look like the T-1000.

Oh yeah…the other Ranger Teens are back in the 1700's. Great. Just fucking fantastic. Are we still doing this stupid plot? Why? Why are we doing any of this absolute nonsense anymore? None of this matters. It's all an excuse to keep the other five away from Tommy and Tommy's Excellent Adventure. For what? So you can put Bulk in Ben Franklin glasses? So you can use those shitty looking rat costumes you stole from Rob Reiner? I get it, you're filming this shit in Australia. Why don't you bite the bullet and have Zedd summon a kangaroo monster or something? It couldn't possibly be any worse than having the Ranger Teens run away from mangy clumps of pubic hair while people call them witches.

Colonial Skull converses with his Totally Not Australian Redcoat brethren about those dagblasted witches who are gonna scare all his good slaves away. He discusses the situation while eating a big block of cheese

Wait just a second here. Cheese? If I'm remembering correctly…there are Rat Monsters afoot. In case any of you dear readers were unaware, many types of rodents are depicted in popular culture as enjoying a variety of cheese. Unless my many years of college education fail me, I've come to the conclusion that we may at some point engage in a humorous scene where Colonial Skull's enjoyment of cheese attracts the attention of these rodent beasts. The Rat Monsters are very large and scary creatures, so they will presumably terrify Colonial Skull and cause him a great deal of misfortune. Then he will run away in a panic and perhaps act silly for comedic effect.

Back in present time, the actual Bulk and Skull are wandering around Angel Grove Park, Australia. Why? Because we have them on set and they're getting paid so they goddamn better be filming something. Write them into a scene. Even if it's completely irrelevant and doesn't have any jokes in it. Like a scene where a woozy Tommy has just woken up and asks if they've seen his pals. They reply no, laugh at him, and then saunter away to ask why these Aussie dweebs don't have any Outback Steakhouses around so they can eat some authentic cuisine.

When Skull notices Tommy looks like refried garbage, he asks Bulk what's going on with that dumbass dreamboat. Bulk says with utmost sincerity, "I'm tellin' you man. It's the martial arts!" A line I wish I'd come up with myself. I don't know what's funnier; somebody making fun of Tommy's child-like karate obsession, or someone as out of shape as Bulk decrying healthy exercise as the Devil's tool to give you headaches. 

Alpha and Zordon breathe a sigh of relief when they locate Tommy on their scanners. Zordon asks Alpha 5 if he was able to locate the other 5 Rangers, but nothing has come up. Not because the scanners aren't working, but because Zordon could give two shits about those old has-beens and their lame-ass Unicorn Zords. With another 3 Tommy's, he's got a team of morons he can pay in dog food and Chuck Norris VHS tapes. All he needs to do is strike up a deal with that clinically depressed middle-aged wizard and he's got a ticket to easy street.

Alpha 5 and Zordon get in touch with OG Tommy and tell him that his hair-clone is trying to bust out that ratty old Dragonzord. If he doesn't stop it, then who knows what will happen? How many more dock workers must get splashed before the Green Ranger is stopped?!

Alpha notices that Tommy seems to look much weaker than before, and Zordon claims it's because the Wizard of Deception took some of his energy with the creation of that clone. Oh okay so that explains why he's had magic-induced headaches. A Wizard Did It. Gotcha Zordon, that explains everything.

That Wizard cut out Tommy's stair climbing hair-chunk!

At long last, the Dragonzord rises up from the depths of the water. Remember when I said that it did that about 3 minutes ago? Well the episode was running short so I guess he needed to keep getting out of the water. Congratulations Power Rangers. You've made me less excited to see the Dragonzord.

The Wizard of Deception cackles in glee over the Dragonzord's arrival, and zaps the goliath with a blast of evil energy from his wand. Likely a spell that will make the Dragonzord more loyal than that no-good son that won't even call the Wizard of Deception on his birthday. He doesn't even know the Wizard's new girlfriend's name! It's Starla by the way.

Zordon informs Tommy that he can regain some of his lost energy by morphing, because we need to have a morphed fight at some point in this trash ass episode. Tommy morphs into the White Ranger and finds himself overcome with energy for as long as the episode needs him to. Otherwise who else is going to stop the evil Dragonzord and his new goofy looking eyes?


By the way, I'm not even going to bother reposting the gif, but he totally chews through that smokestack again. For like…the fourth time in the series. It's amazing how much play Power Rangers got out of that one dumb bit. I've used it so many times already.

….well maybe one more couldn't hurt.

God bless this dumbass show.

Lord Zedd refuses to let the White Ranger interfere with his plans and commands Goldar to send down the Putties. A whole three of them. I know I often gloss over the Z-Putty fights and dismiss them as padding, but holy moly is this one blatantly padded. What makes me think that? The fact that the Putty fight lasts for literally 20 seconds. It's almost inspiring in how desperate it is. Tommy was seconds away from summoning the Tigerzord, and Zedd decided to kill some time in case another scene got cut.

With that half-minute long distraction out of the way, Tommy calls on the mighty Tigerzord to help him battle his former Zord. Tommy offers a half-hearted apology before callously informing the Dragonzord he's going to shut him down. Saba looks around nervously before asking if Tommy has abandoned many of his former weapons. Tommy looks him dead in his little saber eyes and says, "Got any plans for next season buddy?"

The White Tigerzord in Warrior Mode blasts Dragonzord with a beefy White Tiger Thunderbolt, which should logically demolish the Dinozord. I mean I don't want to start a discussion on power levels here (that's a lie), but the Tigerzord is supposed to be leagues above the Dragonzord in terms of ability. Obviously he's not because the writers don't even remember that they said that, but for the sake of argument I think the Tigerzord is supposed to be superior.

In case any of you women out there thought I'd be appealing to converse with, I figured I'd give you some proof to the contrary.

Obviously I don't have a goddamned clue what I'm talking about though, because the Dragonzord knocks the Tigerzord out of commission with one hit from its drill tail. Another climactic and satisfying fight, brought to you by "Return of the Green Ranger."

If I had three wishes I'd use all of them to make this episode be over.

Inside of the Command Center, Alpha 5 and Zordon summarize the last two episodes with one line each.

Zordon: "White Ranger is growing weak!"

Why even say anything else? Keep repeating those lines every single time that you're on screen you two. That's all you've had to say ever since the other Rangers got sent back to a time before white people felt shame for their racism.

Speaking of embarrassing white people, the Ranger Teens continue to run away from the Rat Monsters in the 1700's. And for some reason there are only two of them now? Even though there were three when they were created last week. It's almost as if these monsters are a complete afterthought that only exist  to pad out the length of this trilogy to make up for all the episodes we aren't filming stateside after the movie shoot went over schedule by a million years. Which is completely ridiculous of course. We all know our favorite episodes of Power Rangers involve them running away from giant rubber vermin.

Back in the present time, White Ranger is confronted by Clone Tommy and the Wizard of Deception. Original Tommy says he's willing to surrender so long as his captors are willing to send him wherever they sent his friends. Clone Tommy asks why he would want to be sent 200 years into the past, and Regular Tommy congratulates himself on discovering where his friends were sent. Sorry Deceptive Wizard, but you didn't plan on one thing foiling your plans. The limitless stupidity of Tommy Oliver!

At long last, Alpha 5 locates the five Rangers after Tommy's incredibly lame trick. No seriously, that's how they were able to find the other Rangers. Because Tommy made an off-handed comment about wanting to be with them and he was informed where he would be sent. It's the most tensionless nonsense I've ever seen. There's no buildup to the reveal of where the other Rangers are, and it feels like Alpha 5 was going to locate them eventually anyway. This entire situation feels hideously half-assed and stinks of a first draft that never got rewritten.

Zordon contacts Tommy and informs him that the only way to save the other Rangers is to gain control of the Wizard's wand to teleport himself back in time. One jumpkick later, Tommy does exactly that. So for those of you who were rightfully annoyed at all the useless filler in this trilogy, you can rest comfortably knowing that they're speeding through the resolution to any and all plots you're supposed to give a shit about.

White Ranger grabs the wand and teleports himself back into the past where he meets with his friends and a bunch of racist old peasants. Tommy tells the other Rangers they had better hurry back to Angel Grove before Dragonzord chews down another smokestack. Aisha tells Tommy they can't possibly leave all these salt of the Earth morons alone with a bunch of overgrown rats. If they don't defeat those monsters first, the villagers might not live to the ripe old age of 26.

Tommy assures his team they'll finish off the rats later. Probably. We'll see how much time the episode has left to fill. Adam begs Marissa to return to the present with him, because apparently this budding romance Z-plot is still supposed to be happening. Marissa tells him to fuck off, but does leave him with a parting gift.

This is how she's handling her mid-life crisis.

With the power of the Wizard's wand, Tommy teleports himself and the other Rangers back to Angel Grove. Something I would be much happier about if I didn't know we would have to return to the past to finish off those godforsaken Rat Monsters at some point. At this point you may as well leave them back in time. Who gives a shit? Maybe they'll be able to help out during the Revolutionary War. Or maybe they'd be enslaved because they've got such dark fur.

With the other five Rangers mercifully back in the present, they morph and summon their Thunderzords to combat the Dragonzord. Tommy stays behind to battle the Wizard and the Green Ranger, mainly because his Zord got emasculated the last time it tried to step to Big D. Oh well, at least we're going to get a pretty cool fight against Tommy and the Wizard of Deception right?

You've got to be fucking kidding me.


Well now that the Wizard of Deception has been anticlimactically murdered, Clone Tommy looks perplexed. Regular Tommy informs the hair clone that he has finally been freed from the Wizard's evil curse. Clone Tommy apologizes for being such a fool, and uh….wait what?

Clone Tommy was born out of evil magic. He was never indicated to be a good clone monster who was going through a crisis of faith. All he's wanted to do is blow up Angel Grove with the Dragonzord. Why did he turn into a boy scout the second that his master got vaporized? Why the hell is any of this happening? Why is a being made of evil magic and hair somehow willing to help out the good guys as soon as you murder his dad in front of him? How is this like the 30th stupid thing that's happened in a row and I'm still so flabbergasted?

The Thunder Megazord and the Dragonzord continue their uninteresting splice-fight and the Rangers assume they're close to breaking the spell over the Dragonzord. Probably because they're eyeballing the runtime as closely as I am. The Rangers whip out the Thunder Saber and prepare to deal a critical blow to the Dragonzord, but White Ranger Tommy calls out to them from the ground below and pleads with his comrades not to finish off the Dragonzord. A moment that would mean a whole lot more if Tommy wasn't clearly willing to murder his old Zord about four minutes ago.

The reformed clump of Tommy's hair blows on the Dragon Dagger once again to disengage the Dragonzord. The titanic Dinozord collapses to the ground like an overgrown lump of trash and the Rangers celebrate their pseudo victory. Clone Tommy commands Dragonzord to get his big growling ass back under the sea, to which the Zord complies as it heads down where it's wetter, darlin' it's better, take it from me. Did the Wizard of Deception accidentally make the Green Ranger clone with some leftover Andrea Yates DNA?

The two Tommys have a ridiculous conversation about how Clone Tommy shouldn't feel bad for being a horrific karate homunculus, and he can still be a good guy if he kicks the shit out of some giant rats. Oh…yeah. They're still around aren't they? Great. Can't wait to see those mighty warriors in action.

Why don't you eat cheese nuts.

So Tommy and Tommy head back into the past with the Wizard's wand to engage the rats in mortal combat. In case you were wondering, this was the big battle with the White and Green Rangers fighting side by side that you're supposed to be excited by. The two most popular Rangers in the history of the franchise fighting some curly-tailed dorks. Just kick rocks for all of eternity Power Rangers.

After a horrendously unimpressive battle with three stuntmen in dime-store fursuits, Tommy Prime uses the Wizard of Deception's wand to turn the Rat Monsters back to normal. White Ranger congratulates his former rattail on beating those actual rattails, and tells him that it's time to head back home. Clone Tommy declines and says it's impossible for both of them to exist in the same time as one another, so he's going to live back with these dirt farmers and completely destroy history. I wish Doc Brown would come out of nowhere and run down Clone Tommy with the Delorean. That might bring this wretched trilogy of episodes up to a D-

Back in the present, Adam mopes around because that girl who didn't know what electricity was never got to make out with him. Then, because this show is as subtle as a herpes outbreak, Adam meets a new student at Angel Grove High. A girl who looks exactly like Marissa. Yeah I'm sure that relationship is going to go really well Adam. You're going to tell this girl you tried to fingerbang her great great grandmother while they were dumping tea in the harbor. Knock her dead slugger.

Your Weekly 90's Nostalgia: Nonchalantly Creating Time Paradoxes

Personal Thoughts

Well now I remember why I don't think about these episodes much. Holy moly that was awful. I kept waiting for anything in this trilogy to be worth my time, but it kept chugging along until it died a slow, unentertaining death. I almost feel like I had more fun watching something as pointless and terrible as "The Ninja Encounter Part 2." At least that episode was funny in how obviously unnecessary it was. All three of these episodes have the same stink of uselessness in every second they continue. It feels like you're watching someone steal an hour of your life away from you. Not because they needed to, but because it's the only way they know how to get off.

Actually there's only one thing I really know this trilogy for, and that's a really amusing thing a Power Rangers superfan said about the show with regards to this trilogy. He was being interviewed for a documentary about Power Morphicon, and started discussing how interesting the show was for having such a detailed mythology behind it. He then mentioned how there's no slave trade in the Power Rangers universe, which is such a hilariously insane statement to me.

Look, I'm a giant fucking nerd. Obviously I am, because I'm writing all this nonsense. But that seems like such a silly attempt at creating some deeply detailed Power Rangers universe that the writers didn't really intend. I'm not trying to get down on anybody for letting their freak flag fly, but at the end of the day we're watching a show where a teenager made out of hair spinkicked a man dressed like a rat.

Maybe I'm just not into that level of fandom. I suppose theorycrafting and figuring out the world building of Power Rangers can be fun, but it must not be my cup of tea. I'm more intrigued to see a show making plots by carving up the plot of a Japanese show and putting it together like a big fucked-up puzzle. I like seeing weird looking monsters fight against characters who are bizarrely flawless. It's such a giant pile of things that shouldn't work, I can't help but be impressed when it does. I think that's why I love this show as much as I do.

Look, I just think it's kind of weird to talk about slavery in Power Rangers. Is that fair?


  1. Listening to that fan talk is the noncontact version of a massive head trauma. I feel like I lost a couple of IQ points and executive control over my bladder.

  2. I love fanon and world-building as much as anybody (God knows PR does so little itself that it's pretty much the only way to make sense of its continuity-mocking nonsense) but yeah. Deciding that your fan theory of no slave trade isn't because of the writers' lack of time or effort spent on a $2 script, but makes PR some incredibly deep and clever Just...just no.

    1. Let's ask Captain Mutiny if he's ever traded any slaves

  3. I re-watched this episode on Netflix awhile back and noticed that when Clone Tommy uses his "Because the Plot Demands It" magic to change into Colonial attire, his pant legs are way too short. You thought the Rat Monster costumes were the cheap icing on this bootleg cake of a trilogy? How about a budget so non-existent that the costume department couldn't afford to find proper-fitting period clothes for their over-marketed super-star hero actor?

    1. He's meant to be wearing breeches, knee-length pants that were what dudes wore in the 17th and 18th centuries. Probably because it was real filthy back then and you didn't want to be washing horse crap out of your stockings AND pants every night. Though it kinda looks like they cheaped out and just had him tuck his pants into his socks instead of wearing actual breeches and hose.

  4. "White Ranger grabs the wand and teleports himself back into the past where he meets with his friends and a bunch of racist old peasants. Tommy tells the other Rangers they had better hurry back to Angel Grove before Dragonzord chews down another smokestack. Aisha tells Tommy they can't possibly leave all these salt of the Earth morons alone with a bunch of overgrown rats. If they don't defeat those monsters first, the villagers might not live to the ripe old age of 26.

    Tommy assures his team they'll finish off the rats later."

    Because of course they can't just arrive back to their own era at anytime to avert the disaster.

    Then again, whether intentional or no, I'm guessing that in the PR Universe, that the clock in San Dimas is always running.

  5. People still argue that the Dragonzord is stronger than the White Tigerzord thanks to this dumbass episode, even though it obviously isn't. The White Ranger powers are stated to be a significant improvement over the Green Ranger powers and zzzzzzzz

  6. Weren't you "friends" with that "superfan"? Didn't he block you on Skype over something that started with you jokingly saying "You want me to shoot the president?"

    His "no slave trade" thing is no where near as entertaining as his rants on Will and Rose from PROO. It's nothing but glorified projection. His critiques of them are stuff he's guilty of. It's not enough that he says they're bad characters, he goes out of his way to say these are morally damaging to children. This gets juicer over the fact he admitted to apologizing to one of his friends for letting their kids watch that stuff.

    1. *for criticizing them for letting their kids watch that stuff

      (I think it was someone who worked on the show, not Amit, but Jackie maybe)

    2. Yeah that did happen!! It was so fucking bizarre. I'm not familiar with his ranting about Will and Rose so if you'd elaborate on that I'd be very interested to hear that. Crazy Ranger fan theories are my bread and butter.

    3. Whenever he'd post his thoughts on the Operation Overdrive characters: Will & Rose, he frequently bashes them.

      "Of course they don't. Look at the finale. *Rose thinks her worst trait was BEING ASHAMED OF HER INTELLIGENCE. When she debuts as a self-important genius with no sense of how to bond with others* (at least K was violently abused in her childhood to justify why she acts monstrously sociopathic at times). *Will is repeatedly taught the value of teamwork and not being in charge, and then decides to form a team of sneakers with HIMSELF as leader.* Ronnie and Dax have no capacity for abstract reasoning and just like things that make them happy in the moment. And Mack, poor sad "made as a sexual aid" Mack... Ends up living the life of danger and intrigue he wanted so badly as a nigh-indestructible robot as a frail and squishy human. For the twisted hedonist father who created him. God, at least Tyzonn and Vella get a happy ending."

      Chris is holier-than-thou on forums and at some point threw a fit for not being able to be the first to speak at some PR conference (I think you've heard of it).

    4. I'm astonished that someone would care that much about the order they got to tell a bunch of other nerds the importance of the nerd culture they're partaking in.

      Shoot me an email at some point cause I've got some questions about this actually!

    5. "When she debuts as a self-important genius with no sense of how to bond with others"

      She debutes as someone chewing gum and going 'doohoohoo silly professor, you turned on the death ray!' and really seems socially adept & well adjusted. Until they want an episode about how she's actually a stickler and Doesn't Have Fun, but most of the time they forget that's what her character was supposed to be (or they forgot to tell Rhoda Montemayor and she just is a very happy person).

      Now Will's _actor_ stole from sick kids but as a wise horse once told us, _Goober_ didn't molest those Laker girls, the _actor who played him_ did

    6. I'm astonished anyone could remember OO well enough to have an opinion on it. The whole season is like those guys in Doctor Who that you can only remember if you wear an eyepatch for me.

    7. Well, based on his rant, he doesn't remember it well EH READERS??

      (And I'm just damned.)

  7. Australian Fun Fact #1- The boat that shows up in the background in some shots of Old Sydney Town, er I mean Colonial Angel Grove? I fell off that as a kid.

    Australian Fun Fact #2- Those "rat Monsters" are plain old ordinary Australian Giant Rats. Honest.

  8. It occurs to me that for someone who'd been following Saban's action shows as a whole, this three-parter started two weeks after VR Troopers gave Ryan an evil hair-clone, so this doesn't even get to feel that original. And hey, while "Rangers Back in Time" seemed to have been pushed way back from its production number, VR Troopers managed to get its own "turned into small children" episode aired the previous November!

    At least this episode allows us to make up silly ideas for what became of the Tommy clone later, like that he gathered more giant rats to allow him to play Pied Piper in a Gold Rush town.

  9. I just really, really want a reunion episode with all the teens as now-adults, with their lives settled and everything, they're reminiscing, and someone's like "Wait, what even happened to that Tommy we set loose in the past?" And they realize that Tommy basically became his own (great-great) grandpa, which explains a lot.

    And I will never be over Dragonzord's Evil!Pupils.

    1. ....

      Y'know how Tommy goes from being a green ranger to being a white ranger to being a red ranger to being a black ranger? And yet he always has civilian clothes which match his ranger color instantly available. But he only actually mentions clothes shopping once.

      It all makes sense now; he retains his ancestor's ability to magically manifest period-appropriate clothing!