Power Rangers #0 Has a Few Missteps but Solid Overall

GameStop, Inc.

mighty-morphin-power-rangers-0-4Power Rangers #0

Writers: Kyle Higgins, Steve Orlando, Mairghread Scott

Artists: Hendry Prasetya, Corin Howell, Daniel Bayliss

I might as well get this bit out of the way; I am a huge fan of Power Rangers. I’ve watched every episode of the original ‘Mighty Morphin’ era, and I’ve seen a majority of all the series that have followed. To me, the Power Rangers franchise has a ton of potential, but it’s always been mired down with limitations ranging from restrictions with the original Sentai footage, budgetary confines, and a seriously dated vernacular that makes it a VERY 90’s kids show. As a Power Rangers fan, I’ve learned to see a great deal of charm in the obvious flaws, but a part of me wishes I could see Power Rangers stories free of budgetary constraints where the premise can shine and shed it’s more silly and antiquated tendencies, and how better to serve these stories than in the form of an ongoing comic series? When I heard BOOM! Studios was releasing a new Power Rangers comic series starring the original MMPR cast of characters (sorry Rocky, Adam, and Kat fans.) I was ecstatic!

I’ve read Power Rangers #0, and the main storyline leaves a little to be desired. Written by Kyle Higgins and illustrated by Hendry Prasetya, the series is set shortly after the Green Ranger has been freed of Rita Repulsa’s contro. Including the Green Ranger, who is arguably the most popular character in Power Ranger history, was a great call, and I’m sure there are a lot of great stories to tell in this period of time, but it creates a few problems that just…bug me. Maybe these issues shouldn’t bug me, and I should just go and enjoy the book as a fan, but I can’t seem to shake them; during my reading I found myself asking the following question: does this take place in the same universe as the television series or is this sort of a modern reboot?

If this is a modern reboot, that’s fine, but why wouldn’t you just go back and retell the origin story? I’m sure some people would enjoy an updated mighty-morphin-power-rangers-0-6origin story, and others who weren’t old enough to watch the show religiously might benefit from some kind of recap to introduce them into the MMPR world. Starting after one of the series most significant arcs seems a bit odd to me. If it’s not a reboot, and it’s fully intended to take place within the series timeline and adhere to that canon, why are there references to the Internet and servers? Why do the Power Rangers have cellphones?

Okay, these things might be a bit nitpicky, but the thing is I could be on board with a comic book reboot, you know? Something akin to what Marvel did with the Ultimate universe back in 2002 (before that all got messy) would suit the Power Rangers wonderfully. That’s the route I think they should go with this series, but again why would you kind of drop your readers into the middle of the story and right after the iconic ‘Green With Evil’ saga? If it’s meant to be canonical with the series then I feel adds in updates like the Internet and cellphones, but it also loses out on some of that MMPR charm I mentioned earlier in this review. The characters and the vernacular are a huge part of what that series was; each character had a different personality. Jason was the jock, Trini was the environmentalist with a passion for nature, Billy was the science geek, Zach was the hip-hop dance kid, and Kimberly was the ditzy valley girl! None of these traits really manifest themselves into this issue; all of the Rangers have a very bland and interchangeable personality. The only thing close to characterization we get is that Jason and Tommy aren
’t seeing eye to eye. If you’re going to make it canonical with the series, embrace the age of the source material. You can make it fun and cheesy without having it over-the-top and distracting. If you want to free yourself from the outdated slang and goofiness of the 90’s, then do a more encompassing reboot, and start at the beginning.

2m3plyhWith that out of the way, I did like the book. The art was awesome for the most part (I hated how Zordon looked) and the Zord battle was action packed and stylish. I’m sure not everyone will be bothered by the things that bothered me, and if you’re a fan of the original Power Rangers series, or you’re looking for a nice fix of nostalgia, this is a great book for you. I wouldn’t recommend it to anybody unfamiliar with the series and the lore, however.

The issue also contains a fun Bulk and Skull side story called The Ongoing Adventures of Bulk and Skull; it’s a fun story featuring that classic duo. In the show, some of their escapades and mannerisms would often get on my nerves, but this wasn’t grating or annoying in anyway. Kudos to writer Steve Orlando for nailing that delicate balance with the Bulk and Skull characters; and the art and colors by Corin Howell and Jeremy Lawson are perfect in showcasing the bumbling pair.

Lastly, writer Mairghread Scott and artist Daniel Bayliss nail the classic attitude and style of MMPR with their excellent, albeit diminutive story “What Time Is It?!”. Everything I complained about the main featured story lacking is featured front and center in this five page short; the characters retain their classic personalities and there’s even a nice usage of the classic “Morphenomenal!” that made me smile.

 

Morphin01

 

The Verdict – 7.5/10

  • 7/10
    Story - 7.0/10
  • 8/10
    Art - 8.0/10
7.5/10
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