Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Beast Morphers, “Silver Sacrifice” Review

*** You know what I am? A multi-tasker. That’s why, as Power Rangers Dino Fury is in full swing, I’ll also be looking back at Power Rangers Beast Morphers. Why? Because I can!!!***

Evox, Steel, Power Rangers Beast Morphers, Silver SacrificeSERIES: Power Rangers Beast Morphers
TITLE: S26:E9 – “Silver Sacrifice”
STARRING: Rorrie D. Travis, Jazz Baduwalia, Jacqueline Scislowski, Abraham Rodriguez, Jamie Linehan (Voice)
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale
DIRECTOR: Riccardo Pellizzeri
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: September 14, 2019
SYNOPSIS: Evox’s forces want Steel’s robot body to house the villainous virus. But Nate isn’t willing to give up his new brother so easily.

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

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Early in the episode, Nate and Steel go jogging. Because that’s apparently what you do when you’re a Power Ranger and have a robot buddy. It’s only two brief shots. But what I love is that toward the end of the second one, right before the cut, we see another jogger come into the frame. If you watch him, you’ll notice he turns his head back to look at Nate and Steel. I absolutely love the notion that this man went out for a jog one day and just happened to pass a boy and his robot doing the same thing.

In the previous episode, one of the other Rangers flat out said Nate “isn’t a fighter.” And yet in this episode, he’s throwing spin kicks. That must be one hell of a training program they’ve got at Grid Battleforce.

Nate, Steel, Power Rangers Beast Morphers, Silver Sacrifice

Personally, I’d have borrowed from what they did with Billy way back in season one of MMPR. Have Nate bumble his way through unmorphed fights, and gradually build up his martial arts expertise.

The Rangers are all sneaky when they approach the warehouse where they’re keeping the Cybergate. But when General Burke and the Grid Battleforce troops arrive, they pull up in a pair of SUVs wearing full gear. So much for subterfuge. And low and behold, Ben and Betty get captured. Why were they brought along anyway? This guy seems like he sucks at his job…

Incidentally, General Burke is played by Mark Wright, a voice actor whose work on the series goes as far back as Ninja Storm in 2003. Beast Morphers marks his first major live action role on the show.

Steel: “You haven’t seen power until you’ve seen the power of family.” Awww, that was a nice line. Hokey, but nice.

LOVED the shots of the Red Ranger fighting off the Tronics in the water. Any time they can take advantage of their environment for the fighting aesthetic, it’s a win in my book.

As the Rangers are having to duck and dodge massive shots from the giant-sized Antennatron, they get a message from Commander Shaw: “Rangers, looks like you’ve got big trouble!”

If there was ever a time on this show for a snarky comeback, it was right there.

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

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Beast Morphers, “The Cybergate Opens” Review

*** You know what I am? A multi-tasker. That’s why, as Power Rangers Dino Fury is in full swing, I’ll also be looking back at Power Rangers Beast Morphers. Why? Because I can!!!***

SERIES: Power Rangers Beast Morphers
EPISODE: S26:E8 – “The Cybergate Opens”
STARRING: Rorrie D. Travis, Jazz Baduwalia, Jacqueline Scislowski, Abraham Rodriguez, Cosme Flores
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale
DIRECTOR: Riccardo Pellizzeri
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: April 27, 2019
SYNOPSIS: Scrozzle builds a cybergate through which to transport Evox from the Cyber Dimension. Later, a new Ranger unexpectedly joins the team.

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

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Nate says “phenomenal” twice in this episode. I know it’s the old school fan in me, but that seems like an obvious missed opportunity to have him say “Morphenominal.”

The CGI used for Evox is hardly state of the art. But it was pretty cool to see him slither through the cybergate.

Hold on a minute…Nate is able to teleport a weapon in from Grid Battleforce using his wrist communicator. But it was supposed to have been damaged when he was captured! What gives?

Using praying mantis DNA and the technology from the Cybergate, Nate transforms himself into the Gold Ranger. Beast Morphers is pretty liberal with its use of the term “beast.” As he’s using praying mantis DNA, Nate is more of a Bug Morpher than a Beast Morpher, isn’t he?

I can’t say I’m a big fan of this Gold Ranger costume and its dark mustard coloring. But I’ll say this much: It looks suitably insect-like.

The robotic body Nate created comes online and morphs into Steel, the Silver Ranger. The best thing I can say about Steel at this early juncture is that I appreciate the voice performance by Jamie Linehan. Delightfully corny.

Steel’s genetic make-up is comprised of scarab beetle DNA (another bug…), along with Nate’s DNA. And so, all the talk we’ve heard this season about Nate wanting a brother gets paid off early. Nicely done.

Devon, Ravi, and Zoey get their butts handed to them by Vacuutron, a monster based off a vacuum cleaner. That’s…embarrassing.

Incidentally, Vacuutron is voiced by Cosme Flores, who also plays Ben.

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

Posted in Power Rangers, Television

Power Rangers Beast Morphers, “A Friend Indeed” Review

*** You know what I am? A multi-tasker. That’s why, as Power Rangers Dino Fury is in full swing, I’ll also be looking back at Power Rangers Beast Morphers. Why? Because I can!!!***

SERIES: Power Rangers Beast Morphers
TITLE: S26:E7 – “A Friend Indeed”
STARRING: Rorrie D. Travis, Jazz Baduwalia, Jacqueline Scislowski, Abraham Rodriguez, Emmett Skilton (voice)
WRITERS: Chip Lynn
DIRECTOR: Oliver Driver
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: April 20, 2019
SYNOPSIS: The Rangers take their Beast Bots for granted. Evox’s forces, however, do not.

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

We see Ravi attempting to spar with his Beast Bot, a big blue mechanical gorilla. Later in the episode we’ll see Zoey talking to a yellow mechanical bunny. I can’t help but wonder what that’s like for these young actors, and what they were thinking during some of these early episodes…

These Rangers are obnoxiously ungrateful, considering they essentially have friggin’ robot butlers. Though I guess that’s the idea, isn’t it?

We continue to foreshadow the idea of Nate having wanting a brother. It won’t be too long before that comes to fruition…

Emmett Skilton, the voice of Jax, is the low key MVP in this episode. He had to maintain that cartoony New York accent while also doing some serious emoting, particularly late in the episode when Jax gets his “feelings” hurt. Now that’s a voice actor, ladies and gentlemen.

Toward the end of the episode, Devon, Zoey, and Ravi wind up throwing a party for the Beast Bots. Remember the scene during the first act of Star Wars, when C-3PO gets an oil bath? That’s what I imagine an actual robot party would be like.

That, and maybe a table full of spare parts.

I was surprised to see this episode end on something of a cliffhanger, as Scrozzle tells Blaze and Roxy he’s working on a “cybergate” to move Evox out of the Cyber Dimension.

So let me make sure I understand this…the Cyber Dimension is a place where beings can assume “digital” forms, while also being able to exist outside the dimension in physical form. Evox, however, is too powerful to be transported to Earth without a certain amount of Morph X. Thus, the need to steal it.

So wait, do Blaze and Roxy’s avatars use a certain amount of Morph X every time they transport in and out of the Cyber Dimension? If so, you’d think Evox would want them coming and going as little as possible, thus conserving what Morph X they have. Maybe they’re already doing that? I’unno. Maybe this is one of those things it’s best not to apply too much logic to…

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

Posted in Power Rangers

Power Rangers Beast Morphers, “Evox’s Revenge” Review

*** You know what I am? A multi-tasker. That’s why, as Power Rangers Dino Fury is in full swing, I’ll also be looking back at Power Rangers Beast Morphers. Why? Because I can!!!***

SERIES: Power Rangers Beast Morphers
EPISODE: S26:E2. “Evox’s Revenge”
STARRING: Rorrie D. Travis, Jazz Baduwalia, Jacqueline Scislowski, Abraham Rodriguez, Teuila Blakely
WRITER: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Johnny Hartmann
DIRECTOR: Simon Bennett
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: March 9, 2019
SYNOPSIS: As Evox and the villains assemble, the Rangers face conflict over who their leader should be.

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

The Blaze and Roxy avatars are teleported to the Cyber Dimension where they encounter Scrozzle, who will ultimately serve as one of Evox’s henchmen. He’s also the creator of the Tronics, the villainous foot soldiers for Beast Morphers.

Sometimes I find myself wishing this show would get a little more creative with its voice acting. Scrozzle has virtually the same scratchy, high-pitched voice we’ve heard from villain toadies over and over throughout the show’s life. Can’t we come up with something a little more fresh?

Evox, our computer virus and lead villain for Beast Morphers, takes the form of a big snake (shown above). It’s hardly the best CGI you’ll ever see. But other than that, no complaints. I buy it.

This episode introduces us to the Beast Bots, robot companions for our three Rangers. Nate quickly announces that their circuits infused with animal DNA. That’s one of those things that sounds cool at face value, but when you really think about it, makes no sense. At least not without further explanation. Are we supposed to believe these things are synthezoid robots, like Data or the Vision?

Kelson Henderson, who’s been cast on the series several times, once again returns as the voice of Cruise, Devon’s Beast Bot. He was first on the show back in 2005, as Boom on Power Rangers SPD.

Ben and Betty are our comedic side duo this time around, playing the roles previously filled by Bulk and Skull, Cassidy and Devon, Victor and Monty, etc. Historically, when comedy is incorporated this way, the show does a pretty good job of keeping it amusing rather than annoying. Cosme Flores and Kristina Ho are able to keep that tradition alive. I can also appreciate that they’re at the Rangers’ base, getting into hijinks with the tech, gear, etc. That’s a dynamic we haven’t seen in awhile.

Apparently one of the show’s ways of establishing that Devon is a video game nut is simply having him generically reference video games time and time again. At best it’s a little contrived. At worse it’s flat out grating.

These animal-related weaknesses, such as Zoey needing carrots to charge up because of her jackrabbit DNA, are silly and eye-rolling. But because this is a show meant for young children, it’s an acceptable kind of silly. Though in Devon’s case, I highly doubt cheetahs are afraid of dogs. Much less a friggin picture of a dog…

I don’t have any major complaints about the zord stuff here. Power Rangers obviously exists in part to sell toys. But I remember seeing some of the Ninja Steel zords and thinking the “toyification” of the show had become a little too blatant. Especially when we got to the Ninja Steel Megazord. But by modern standards, these zords are fine. At least so far.

I appreciated the way “Evox Unleashed” handled the question of who the team leader would be. Ravi and Zoey both wanted it bad enough to openly compete with one another, whereas Devon simply wanted to do a good job. Thus, not wanting to be the leader so badly ironically made him the perfect choice to lead the team. I like that moral for kids. It’s alright to want something, but not to the point that it supersedes all your other responsibilities.

Although, maybe these kids should have been paying closer attention to the franchise they’re in. C’mon noobs. The Red Ranger is always the leader…

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