Posted in Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “New Leaf” Review

Ollie, Amelia, Power Rangers Dino Fury, New LeafSERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
EPISODE:
S29:E7. “New Leaf”
STARRING:
Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS:
Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Robyn Grace
PREMIERE DATE:
March 3, 2022
SYNOPSIS:
Ollie’s ego gets put in check, as Void Queen’s forces threaten the city’s water supply.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

It became pretty clear early in this episode that we were going to get some development here in the potential Ollie/Amelia romance. “New Leaf” doesn’t disappoint. It also delivers on some easily predicted, yet no less satisfying character development for Ollie.

I’m always on the look-out for former PR cast members when it comes to one-off characters like this Dr. Drake Flloyd. No such luck here. Though the actor, Jamie Irvine, has been on Shortland Street before. It feels like if you’re going to be in the New Zealand acting pool, you have to pass through Shortland Street at some point.

You don’t come to Power Rangers looking for quality CGI. That’s rarely been more evident than at the sight of that CGI octopus tentacle. Woof.

So now that Santaura and Tarrick have officially turned on each other, does that mean Void Knight is about to become a good guy? Or perhaps a sort of antihero, like Ecliptor was way back in Power Rangers in Space?

As Squashblight creates a storm cloud filled with his venom, Izzy says: “He’s gonna make it rain!” You just know that Maiya Thompson, who did the teleplay for this episode, smirked when she wrote that.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Secret Santa” Review

SERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E22 – “Secret Santa”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Guy Langford, Maiya Thompson, Johnny Hartmann
DIRECTOR: Catherine Bell-Booth
ORIGINAL U.S. AIR DATE: October 15, 2021 (Netflix)
SYNOPSIS: Javi and Solon must stop an explosive in Dinohenge.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive.

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I keep wanting to refer to Javi as Chance, as that’s his actor’s first name. It also happens to be a more interesting name. So if that accidentally happens here, you know why.

These Christmas episodes have been par for the course since Nickelodeon purchased the brand. They’re almost entirely skippable. But occasionally they’ll deliver something cool. Bulk and Spike meeting the Samurai Rangers, Peter and Yoshi Sedarso working together in an episode, etc. I don’t know that I’d necessarily put this one in the cool category, mostly because “Secret Santa” doesn’t seem to know what it wants to be. It’s got elements of a clip show, obviously. But it also kind of does its own thing. It’s an anomaly that way.

Of Amelia and Ollie, Javi says “She knows just how to push his buttons.” We’ve reached the point where if those two don’t get together next season, I’m going to be pretty disappointed. It’s a Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield in Spider-Man: No Way Home type situation.

So Santa has a direct line to the Power Rangers, eh? Considering how often we’ve seen Santa on this show over the years, that’s actually pretty believable…

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Void Trap” Review

Power Rangers Dino Fury, Void Trap, Dr. AkanaSERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E21 – “Void Trap”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Michael Hurst
ORIGINAL U.S. AIR DATE: October 15, 2021 (Netflix)
SYNOPSIS: The Rangers use Ollie’s mother to set a trap for Void Knight.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive.

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Now seems like a good time to talk about Shavaughn Ruakere, who plays Dr. Akana. Like a lot of Power Rangers actors, she’s appeared on the New Zealand soap opera Shorthand Street. She also made it to the finals of New Zealand’s incarnation of Dancing with the Stars. She’s a fine addition to the cast, and takes center stage in this episode.

When the plan goes awry and Dr. Akana is lost in another dimension, Ollie almost immediately blames Zayto. I liked that. A very natural and human reaction. It seems extremely obvious (and it is), but that kind of thing might have been absent in past seasons. And it was Zayto’s idea, after all.

Actually, considering this is essentially the season finale (Does the Christmas episode count?), it’s interesting how Ollie-centric “Void Trap” is. Historically, finales are typically the Red Ranger’s time to shine. That’s a little shake up I’m glad to see.

Zayto destroys Reaghoul using the T-Rex Cosmic Megazord. I’d be down about that, if Reghoul’s whole thing wasn’t resurrecting the dead. Plus, this was an episode where Boomtower got yet another go-around. And this is the season that brought friggin’ Lord Zedd back. If they want to bring Reaghoul back, they can bring him back. Even if it’s down the road in another series.

After Void Knight’s machine is destroyed, the Rangers lose their connection to the Morphin Grid and demorph. Thus, Dr. Akana sees that Ollie is the Blue Ranger. I really wish she’d have said something like, “I knew it was you!” It’s not like there was a shortage of clues. There was no subtlety in Ollie’s Ranger game…

The fight that the unmorphed Rangers have with Void Knight and his forces is short but sweet. When they get the actors mixed in with the fantastical Sentai elements, it’s generally a plus. And doing much of their own choreography too.

Seeing Amelia briefly cross swords with Void Knight (shown below) was cool. She might be the best developed character on the show. So it’s nice to see her get a moment like that.

“Void Trap” goes to the trouble of severing the Rangers’ connection to the Morphin Grid, only to give it back to them moments later. Not to mention the dinosaur statues being magically rebuilt after Ollie destroyed them. That all feels a little clumsy. But it justified the unmorphed fight sequence. So I’ll give it to them.

The Green Morphin Master is the one who restores the Rangers’ powers. Again I must ask, why the green one, specifically?

One of our closing shots is of Santaura, Void Knight’s…wife? Girlfriend? It would have been really awesome if her eyes had popped open at the end there. Then again, that implies she’ll be the villain next season. I doubt that’s the case.

“Void Trap” is atypical as far as season finales, or perhaps mid-season finales go. That’s not a bad thing, however. The fight between our heroes and our villain is smaller in scale, yet more personal.

Still no sign of Lord Zedd. But there’s still plenty of time…

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “The Makeover” Review

Power Rangers Dino Fury, the Makeover, Pop-Pop, AmeliaSERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E19 – “The Makeover”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Maiya Thompson, Guy Langford
DIRECTOR: Michael Hurst
ORIGINAL U.S. AIR DATE: October 15, 2021 (Netflix)
SYNOPSIS: As Amelia gets Pop-Pop ready for a date, the Power Rangers face a body-swapping monster.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive.

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

In the Power Rangers universe, there’s a legendary pirate named “Purple Beard.” That sounds about right.

J-Borg is a host at Buzz Blast? I thought she was just an assistant for Jane. And yet, I love how the woman she’s interviewing doesn’t bat an eye at being interviewed by a cyborg.

Our monster for the episode is Boneswitch, a monster that can swap people’s bodies. He demonstrates his powers on Slyther and Mucus, and then later swaps Zayto and Amelia, as well as Ollie and Javi.

I think they missed a cool acting opportunity in this episode. They could have had Campbell Cooley and Torum Heng, the voices of Slyther and Mucus respectively, impersonate one another’s characters, and then had the Ranger actors impersonate one another. It would have made for a lot of fun. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers did an episode like that in its first season.

Power Rangers Dino Fury, The Matchmaker, Group Shot

Instead, they had Slyther speak with Mucus’ voice, Zayto speak with Amelia’s voice, etc. Lame. Even lamer? Pop-Pop apparently doesn’t realize that Amelia has a different voice. A male voice.

I did chuckle a bit when Aiyon got body-swapped with a pigeon. Corny, but amusing.

When the Rangers are body swapped, they can’t link to the Morphin Grid. At least not with their own powers. So they have to swap powers along with their bodies. I scratched my head at that one a little bit. But I suppose it’s fair enough.

Seeing the Mosa Razor Zord leap out of the water and grab Boneswitch was one of the cooler zord moments I’ve seen in the show’s recent history. Certainly the coolest one in Dino Fury thus far. 

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels, Micro-Reviews

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Crossed Wires” Review

SERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E18 – “Crossed Wires”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Guy Langford
DIRECTOR: Caroline Bell-Booth
ORIGINAL U.S. AIR DATE: October 15, 2021 (Netflix)
SYNOPSIS: Izzy’s shortcomings in her electronics class leak into her Ranger duties.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Nice to see them use Fern as Izzy’s actual girlfriend. As opposed to a character to be discarded after her big moment earlier this season.

After Izzy messes up with the sleep gas device and teleports away, the civilians in the park wake up. We then have a bit of ADR dialogue where a woman talks about a strange dream where “goblins were turning people into trees.” That in itself actually sounds like the plot of a Power Rangers episode. Possibly better than this one…

The initial fight between the Rangers and the Hengemen takes place at what looks like a heavy duty industrial factory type place. I like that, as for some reason it makes me think of the original Saban era of the show. We had a decent amount of factory fights those first 10 years or so. For whatever reason, it’s a setting that works well.

I like that we sort of have a double lesson going on in this episode. Obviously, Izzy was lying to her friends about being good at electronics. So she gets hers there. But we’ve also got Ollie learning to be patient with Izzy as she learns. Hopefully, by the time Dino Fury is over, we’ll have the sense that Ollie has learned to be a little less pompous in general.

We get the debut of the Fusion Ultrazord here. It’s…another zord. Meh. I’ll say this much: When I was a kid, Ultrazords were big tank type things. Now we have Ultrazords that can walk, punch, etc. Times change, I guess.

After Mucus escapes with the Sporix, Amelia says, “Oh Fungus!” That is not what I initially thought she said…

An unexpected appearance from Amelia’s Pop-Pop at the end there. Dino Fury has a nicely full supporting cast.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Our Hero” Review

SERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E17 – “Our Hero”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Guy Langford, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Caroline Bell-Booth
ORIGINAL U.S. AIR DATE: October 15, 2021 (Netflix)
SYNOPSIS: Aiyon lets the praise for his heroism go to his head.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Watch how close Ollie and Amelia are a little before the three minute mark. By Power Rangers standards, that’s a fairly subtle way of building their romance. Which is happening. Mark my words…

Also, note that Amelia is reading a book about haunted Egyptian pyramids. Nice continuity there, as it relates to her interest in the paranormal.

The bit with the Rangers going into changing rooms to morph feels like something right out of the ’60s Batman TV show, which I’ve always said has more in common with Power Rangers than one might think.

When they cut from Buzz Blast to the party for the Rangers, there are a couple of ADR lines about the Gold Ranger. One of them is a male voice saying, “I bet he’s cute too.” That’s a nice little bit of inclusive verbage.

I can’t decide whether Jane pointing to the monster fight and exclaiming, “It’s newwwwwwws!” was funny or cringeworthy. I guess I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt and say funny.

Slyther’s scheme is to hypnotize the Mosa Razor Zord. So are these zords the semi-alive kind, as opposed to the strictly mechanical kind? I don’t recall that being established. But maybe I’m wrong.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Storm Surge” Review (Gold Ranger Debuts!)

Power Rangers Dino Fury, Storm Surge, Gold RangerSERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E15 – “Storm Surge”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Chris Graham
ORIGINAL U.S. AIR DATE: October 15, 2021 (Netflix)
SYNOPSIS: Ollie learns a lesson about keeping promises, as a mysterious storm lingers over Pine Ridge.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Nice bit of continuity in that they tied the mysterious storm back to the (Ninja?) Nexus Prism showing up in “Unexpected Guest.” It’ll be interesting to see if the powers discovered in this episode are somehow linked to the Prism. Not likely, but it would be cool, right?

Dr. Akana seems like a good mom. But if she let Ollie leave the house in those white pants, she’s slacking on part of her job. For whatever reason, I couldn’t stand those damn things.

Mr. Whiz (shown below) was indeed played by Campbell Cooley, the actor who voices Slyther. That’s nice that they did that. I can see previous administrations just putting a new actor in there, as opposed to going for consistency like that.

Power Rangers Dino Fury, Storm Surge, Campbell Cooley

So Amelia says to the water monster, “Really, cuz you seem kinda shallow.” Afterward, about a second goes by as she cocks her eyebrow. As if the episode wanted to give the awful pun a little more time to breathe, just to make sure we all got it. Still, Hunter Deno’s delivery was cute. So we’ll give her points for that.

And so, “Storm Surge” gives us the surprise debut of our Gold Ranger. We don’t have much to go on at this point, as they’re taking the mysterious route for now. I’ll say this much: The costume is cool. Blue and gold usually work. It’s reminiscent of the Ninja Steel Gold Ranger, only without the goofy cowboy aesthetic. Plus, the gold is more yellow and less brown.

So obviously our Gold Ranger knows Zayto. The whole “Hey Zayto” thing at the end was a little clumsy. Presumably like Zayto, this guy has been asleep for millions of years. So he wakes up, sees one guy that he knows, and then teleports away from him? For no apparent reason? Doesn’t add up.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Old Foes” Review (Lord Zedd Returns!)

SERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E13 – “Old Foes”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Johnny Hartmann
DIRECTOR: Chris Graham
ORIGINAL U.S. AIR DATE: October 15, 2021 (Netflix)
SYNOPSIS: A Sporix Beast resurrects Lord Zedd.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Well gosh. As a first generation Power Rangers fan, I wonder if I’ll have any thoughts about this one…

Indeed, the show has resurrected Lord Zedd, the most popular villain in the show’s history. It’s not merely a reference to him. It’s not some cockamamie story about he and Rita Repulsa having a son we never knew about. The franchise’s quintessential villain is back. What’s more, he’s brought back in a way that makes you wonder why they didn’t bring him back a lot sooner. They simply bring in a monster with the power to reincarnate people. Boom. There’s Zedd.

However, they don’t simply leave it at that. In a real treat for longtime fans like me, they reference a bunch of old MMPR episodes, talk about Zordon’s sacrifice in  Countdown to Destruction, and actually treat Zedd like a huge deal. It’s one of the better past character that the show has ever done. What’s more, as someone who grew up on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, it’s a genuine thrill.

The elephant in the room as far as Zedd is concerned is that his voice is different. Andrew Laing plays the role, as opposed to the late Robert Axelrod. Though even if Axlerod was still with us, I doubt they’d have used him. You’ll notice that in the sequence that used the old footage, Zordon, Rita, Alpha 5, and Andros all had their voices dubbed over by different actors. In Beast Morphers, the returning Goldar also had a different voice. I can only assume that’s a union issue, and if they could have brought the old actors back, they would have.

The use of the inhibitor collar from Beast Morphers on Zedd was a nice touch. This episode truly is a continuity buff’s dream come true. But it was good from a character standpoint too. Unless your name is Dark Specter, chances are Zedd isn’t taking orders from you.

The line where Ollie calls Zedd “radiator face” is a callback to a line Rita had in an MMPR episode. Don’t ask me which one. I just know she called him radiator face at some point.

We’ve reached the point where I’m actually going to be mad if Dino Fury doesn’t link Ollie and Amelia romantically. Or “ship” them, as the kids would say. Their little back and forth moments have become a highlight of the show for me.

Arguably the best thing about this Zedd development? They didn’t kill him off, which would truly have been idiotic. They had him disappear, presumably to return at a later date. I’ve even heard a little bit of buzz about him being the villain for the second season of Dino Fury. Naturally, there’s a lot of intrigue there.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Phoning Home” Review

Slyther, Power Rangers Dino FurySERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E10 – “Phoning Home”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Guy Langford, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Charlie Haskell
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: June 15, 2021
SYNOPSIS: Void Knight’s new general impersonates someone from Zayto’s home planet.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Void Knight: “Who cares about colors? We’re not Power Rangers!” That feels like something a non-PowerRangers fan must have said to one of the writers at some point.

Slyther, Void Knight’s new general, is really charming. His tendency to call his own moves during a fight is a fun quirk, and the vocal performance by Campbell Cooley is delightfully cheesy.

We see via flashback that dogs on Zayto’s homeworld also have those flesh-colored antennae. That should really count as animal abuse. Give the dog some dignity, will ya?

Amelia gets a communication from Zayto about training…right in front of the camera crew. Wish they’d cleared out the extras for that shot.

Nice to see the Rangers training. Small complaint: I wish they could have been in some sort of active wear, as opposed to their standard civilian garb.

There’s a nice little reference to Levi Weston, the Gold Ninja Steel Ranger, in this episode. Little details like that are awesome.

I didn’t know Solon could fight. Certainly not the most fluid movements I’ve ever seen. But still, that’s kinda cool.

Wait…the Rangers don’t know how to summon their zords without Solon’s help? I’m gonna let that slide because we’re still early in the series. But c’mon now, guys…

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Power Rangers, Toys

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Cut Off” Review

SERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury
TITLE: S28:E9 – “Cut Off”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Guy Langford, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Charlie Haskell
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: June 15, 2021
SYNOPSIS: Ollie takes too much technology on a camping trip. Then, Void Knight cuts the Rangers off from their tech.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Episodes 9, 10, and 11 of Dino Fury are the first episodes of Power Rangers to premiere on Netflix, along with the eight episodes that had already aired on Nickelodeon. I’m curious as to why those last three episodes hadn’t aired beforehand. Still, it makes for a nice little mini-binge.

What’s more, apparently season two of Dino Fury will be exclusive to Netflix. As someone who’s been having a lot of fun following the series on a week-by-week basis again, I’ve got mixed feelings about that. But you certainly can’t argue with the distribution Netflix has. And if it turns out to be good for the show overall, then I can’t complain. It may just take some getting used to.

When the Rangers realize they’re cut off from their tech, Amelia says she’ll “call the old fashioned way,” and goes to find her smartphone. As an adult fan who was around before the age of the iPhone, that line makes me feel old.

So the premise is that the Rangers are “miles from the city,” and can’t teleport in case Void Knight launches an attack. I appreciate that Zayto brought up the fact that they could walk there, despite how long it would take. I was ready for them to simply stay stuck in the forest until they found a solution.

They literally built a giant crossbow to fire Ollie’s arrow at the big tech-blocking balloon. Pure insanity, and I kinda love it.

Based on their interaction in this episode, I’m convinced we’ve got an Ollie/Amelia romance coming our way. I mean, why not?

So…where was Zayto going with the “Why did the chicken cross the road?” joke? Especially if he didn’t know what the punchline was? Not the most important detail in the world. But it’s nagging at me.

Right before the zord battle starts, Ollie says that the bird monster is about to be “all out of cluck.” *cringes* Really? You sure about that?

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.