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.

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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

Power Rangers Beast Morphers, “Beasts Unleashed” 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:E1. “Beasts Unleashed”
STARRING: Rorrie D. Travis, Jazz Baduwalia, Jacqueline Scislowski, Abraham Rodriguez
WRITER: Chip Lynn
DIRECTORS: Simon Bennett, Yuji Noguchi
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: March 2, 2019
SYNOPSIS: An evil computer virus sabotages a city’s attempt to use the Morphing Grid for clean energy. Three new Rangers rise to take on the threat.

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

It’s fun to me that the Morphing Grid has, over time, become more and more of a character on the show. This thing, essentially used as a piece of expository tech dialogue way back in the Mighty Morphin days, has grown and grown to the point that it’s now an active piece of Power Rangers lore. And in the case of Beast Morphers, a pivotal part of the show’s premise. Morph X, a clean energy source derived from the grid, is being used not only to power the Rangers and their tech, but the city they reside in as well. That’s a really cool premise, and a clever way to use the concept of the grid.

But for crying out loud, is it “Morphin Grid” or “Morphing Grid?” Because I’ve heard it said both ways…

Devon Daniels, our new Red Ranger, reminds me a lot of Zack from Mighty Morphin. Rorrie D. Travis injects a lot of charisma into the character. Mere minutes into the premiere, I can tell he was a good casting choice.

Jazz Baduwalia, who plays Ravi, is the first Indian actor to play a Power Ranger.  I remember being shocked when I heard that. Yes, diverse casting deserves to be celebrated. But the show also deserves to be called out for this one. Beast Morphers is the 26th season of Power Rangers, a show that has supposedly had diversity built into its DNA from the start. And yet there had never been a Ranger of Indian descent until now? To me, that’s more sad than anything else. Sadder still is the fact that we’re now on season 28, and we still haven’t had a Middle Eastern Ranger…

You really can’t blame Devon for sneaking into Grid Battleforce, can you? He’s a gamer, and Grid Battleforce sounds like it was plucked directly from a video game.

Devon’s dad, the mayor of Coral Harbor, references Rita Repulsa, Sledge, and Galvanax when talking about villains who’ve wanted to steal the Rangers’ powers. That’s a nice little moment, harkening back to not just the first season, but Dino Charge and Ninja Steel too.

Nate Silva, the genius “child prodigy” character played by Abraham Rodriguez, annoys me for some reason. Like Will Wheaton in Star Trek: The Next Generation, he’s got a very punchable face.

The Beast Morphers suits are…different. Even by kids standards, the spandex costumes on this show have always required a pretty big suspension of disbelief, not the least of which because of the zippers in back being clearly visible. In contrast, these suits appear to be made of a leathery material, with the zippers clearly visible in front for some reason.

I don’t dislike them, though. They’re an ingredient that makes Beast Morphers stand out amongst other seasons. Would I want the suits to be like this every season? No. But as a one-off they’re perfectly fine.

For whatever reason, Power Rangers loves to tinker with the DNA of its heroes. Case in point, Beast Morphers is merging human and animal DNA to give the Rangers animal-themed super powers. The speed of a cheetah, the strength of a gorilla, etc. As far as the risk/reward ratio is concerned, I wonder how that stacks up against being bitten by a radioactive spider. Or perhaps a radioactive jackrabbit…

Yeah, the Yellow Ranger’s DNA was merged with that of a jackrabbit. Cheetah. Gorilla. Jackrabbit. One of these things is not like the others.

For the uninitiated, Power Rangers is made using footage from the Japanese show Super Sentai. So the producers of Power Rangers are to a large extent beholden to what the Japanese creators do. In this case, I’d love to be able to ask those creators…Why a jackrabbit?

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