'Mighty Morphin Power Rangers' does a flying jump-kick to Nickelodeon

Power-RangersImage Credit: Everett CollectionNo one will ever be able to argue that Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was a good show. But the combination of repurposed video from Japan and candy-colored inane high school drama somehow proved weirdly appealing, at least to nine-year-old me. (For some reason, I still remember what a Dragonzord is.) So I’m vaguely intrigued by the news from the Hollywood Reporter that the Power Rangers franchise is making a leap from Disney to Nickelodeon after being bought back by the original owner Haim Saban.

The plot of Power Rangers is helpfully explained by the introductory text to Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie: The Videogame for Game Gear. Besides introducing Amy Jo Johnson to the world (she played the Pink Ranger), Power Rangers didn’t leave a huge cultural footprint…or so I thought. Apparently, the high-concept toy advertisement TV series is about to begin its 18th season. (According to the article, the franchise has also generated “well over $5 billion” worldwide, which I think finally explains the financial crisis.)

Saban is betting that the move to Nickelodeon might reboot the franchise’s appeal. (Personally, I’m pulling for a gritty post-apocalyptic makeover. ) He also indicates that he’s considering theme park attractions. PopWatchers, any excitement for the possible return to glory of this franchise? Is it crazy to wonder if Rangers‘ popularity indirectly led to the success of the similarly martial-arts themed The Matrix years later?

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  • Cory

    MMPR was the first show I ever watched regularly; not only did I never miss an episode, I taped every episode to watch again. It was my absolute favorite show. However, after the original rangers begin leaving, it wasn’t nearly as good (especially following the departure of Kimberly-Amy Jo Johnson-the second to last original Ranger left). However, the series really went down the drain following their transition for “Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers” to whatever their next incarnation was. I hope that this move can bring the series back to its former glory.

    • Sharlin

      The Japanese version actually changes cast every year. The US version had to do the same because each verion of the Japanese (called Super Sentai) only have 50 episodes a year per series.

      • Cory

        I knew why they changed, but I just thought the overall quality declined after that. It could just be because I was getting a little too old for the show at that point.

    • mary q contrary

      I was in third grade when it came out, and I was late to school every morning for like a week before my mom caught on and made me watch it in the afternoons. I freaking loved it. Rita. Haha.

    • Meow

      I was born in 1987 and I watched it every new episode until the episode Amy Jo Johnson left. I never watched after that, she was always my favorite, was so sad when she left.

      • Meow

        -it*
        But yeah, after the original cast left, the show started sucking for me, and when Kimberley left, I left with her!

      • chloe

        I did the same thing lol. I couldnt stand when Kimberly left. I didn’t like Kat and I hated it when Tommy made his move on her! Tommy and Kimberly forever!

      • The Star Treker (aka Michael)

        I left for a while after Power Rangers In Space since it was the last season where Zordon dies, Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd turned good and it was their and Skull’s last full appearance. You know Tommy, Rocky, Adam, and Kat continued to be power rangers on Power Rangers Zeo and Billy just helped them by staying at the Command Center and even Jason returned as the Gold Ranger and then Tommy, Adam, and Kat only continued as rangers on Power Rangers Turbo for the first 5 episodes.

        Yeah I was sad when Kimberly had to leave and at first I hated Kat replacing her. Kat got Tommy to get over Kimberly. Kimberly broke his heart. She broke up with him because she found herself a new guy. This happened on Power Rangers Zeo. Kimberly wrote a letter to Tommy that she found a new guy and she never meant to hurt Tommy but she still wanted to be his friend though.

        Now I don’t really hate Kat anymore. She started to grow on me. I like her now even I love Kimberly more. I might have hated that this happen to Tommy, my most favorite ranger from all times but I did not let this issue stop me from watching the show. That is what actually happened but the real reason behind it of all because Amy Jo Johnson was getting really fid up with the producers because she wasn’t getting paid enough that is why she really left.

        After that they passed the torch to T.J., Carlos, Ashley, and Cassie as the new Turbo Rangers and oh Rocky was replace by Justin (a 12 year old) since Rocky got injured in the second movie, Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie (which was the continuation of Power Rangers Zeo but not the first movie, the first movie was basically a separated universe from the TV series) and Kimberly made a cameo in that movie including Jason.

        After Power Rangers Turbo then T.J., Carlos, Ashley, and Cassie continued as rangers on Power Rangers In Space and Andros joined them as the Red Space Ranger and as their new leader. Even Adam came back again in one episode and morphed into his Black Mighty Morphin Power Ranger outfit once more and this might shock you even the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles appeared on there too which was freaking awesome!

        I love the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. In a way they are the ones actually got me into Mighty Morphin Power Rangers in the first place because the Power Rangers reminded me of the Turtles since both work as a team, have different color outfits, and have a mentor and do martial arts. Zordon is like Master Splinter, Billy is like Donatello since both of them are science and technology geeks, Lord Zedd is like Shredder, Baboo and Squatt are like Bebop and Rocksteady, and the Putty Patrollers are like the Foot Soldiers.

        Andros was the one who that had to kill Zordon which was only way to save Earth and the universe from Dark Specter and Astronema (was only evil and control by a computer chip and she was really Andros sister, Karone). Zordon asked Andros to destroy his tube. It was hard on Andros to make that decision.

        After Zordon died, his good energy turned all of the forces of evil to dust except it turned Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd to good and made Rita Repulsa look really hot and Lord Zedd became human as well and Astronema went back being good again as her real self, Karone. That is when I thought that was the end of Power Rangers.

        For a while I thought that Power Rangers Lost Galaxy was a remake or reboot and at first I hated it and didn’t watch it for a while until I saw the Space Rangers appeared on there. I didn’t know Alpha was on there the whole season. Lol. When I saw an episode of Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue I noticed they done another crossover with the Lost Galaxy Rangers and they did it again on Power Rangers Time Force.

        So I decided I will just continue watching the franchise and on Power Rangers Wild Force they had a episode where all 10 Red Rangers from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers to Wild Force teamed up and fight against the surviving generals of the Machine Empire from Power Rangers Zeo (Jason and Tommy appeared on there) then on Power Rangers Dino Thunder, Tommy returned as the Dino Rangers mentor and leader and became the Black Dino Ranger and on one of the episode of Power Rangers Operation Overdrive, Adam the second original Black Ranger returned again to take down Rita Repulsa and Lord Zedd’s son, Thrax.

        After Power Rangers Operation Overdrive (which was a okay season) I pretty much gave up because pretty much Disney ran the Power Rangers to the ground so I didn’t bother to watch Power Rangers Jungle Fury (where their costumes and morphers which were sunglasses looked stupid and retarded) or Power Rangers RPM (which I didn’t care to watch since Jungle Fury sucked), the last 2 seasons.

  • Jade

    As a long term, admittedly geeky fan of the show, I was devastated when it was announced RPM, Season 17, would be its last. In the PR fandom, many hoped someone would buy it and continue the franchise. Now they have and its even better than what was expected. I don’t think ANY continueing PR fan would have expected the founder of the franchise to step to the plate but now that he has, we’re thrilled.

    This news comes just three months before the second Power Rangers Convention in Los Angeles. Now I have something else to look forward to!

    • skytate

      I’m going too! I went to the first one a couple years ago. I have been a fan since the beginning (Time Force and SPD were my favorite seasons)and I am super happy that they are back with the creator. Yes, I’m a geek, but I have kids who have grown up loving PR, so I kind of did too.

  • janessadawn

    I was a total fanatic about this show when I was 6 (1994). My friend & I got in trouble for playing Power Rangers at school & excluding other people from playing with us. Such fond memories… I’d probably watch it for nostalgia if it came back.

    • Alyssa

      I also got in trouble in the 1st grade(1995)for playing Power Rangers and kicking other students….good times!
      It isn’t hard for me to believe that the franchise has made over $5 billion because my own family bought me pretty much all the pink power ranger toys for bithday, christmas, etc for about 4 years straight, and this was the case for a lot of kids who grew up in the early 90s.

    • Liz

      My friends and I used to play Power Rangers, I was always the yellow ranger. My best friend, he was always blue, yea we were nerds but we had fun playing Power Rangers! I still occasionally watch the movies on Hulu.

      • jj

        me too!!!!!! I saw that they were on hulu a couple of months ago and watched it for about 30 mins. then i fell asleep. lol

  • Tyler

    It actually got its gritty post-apocalyptic makeover with Power Rangers RPM, the show’s most recent and probably one of its best incarnations. Look up some clips. It is good stuff. But Disney didn’t care too much and relegated it to ABC Kids and didn’t even get aired most places.

  • dk

    god just let the awful show/franchise from 2 decades ago die already.

  • Orac

    They haven’t shown the last few seasons in my area, which is a shame. I’ve enjoyed it since the beginning. Some seasons were really quite good.

  • Sharlin

    It did go downhill when it was bought by Disney. I’m glad Saban bought it back. I hope he makes the shows just as good as their Japanese originals.

  • sascha

    i loved power ranger. I wanted to be the red ranger really badly and me and my friends used to act like we were power rangers and fight each other. GOOD TIMES!!! Haha

  • Brett

    Darren, I suggest that we get Beyonce to play the Pink Ranger – ’cause she’s got charisma and presence, and can act, and all that.

    • LordJ

      That actually made me laugh out loud!!

  • daisyj

    Terrible, terrible show, but I do have to thank it for introducing me to the concept of camp. The dialogue! The sex-changing yellow ranger! The clip of the robot flying into the tree! It was hilarious, and I loved it. Frankly, I think my love of all cheesy monster/martial arts movies dates back to afternoons watching that show.

  • Spandex

    Yeah, the “post-apocayptic” makeover has been done through RPM – which is a must-see for any Power Ranger die-hard. Personally, I found it to be a good series: it had heart, humor, action, and suspense. That season really stands out like a sore thumb. Check it out if you can!

  • Brandon

    Just for the record, Look up Season 17, Power Rangers: RPM. It actually had a gritty, post-apocalyptic makeover.

  • rey

    when mmpr came out. i was in high school. i am not ashamed to say i watched it faithfully. when they became ninja rangers and had the awesome shogunzords. that was their zenith. after that i lost interest.

  • jd

    a few years back, they did an anniversary episode called “forever red”. it reunited any and everyone who was a red ranger. look it up on youtube. it was awesome.

  • Rebecca

    Loved MMPR as a kid and during high school and college, I got back into watching the series (SPD was my personal favorite – good acting and decent plotline). I haven’t watched anything after Mystic Force but the show still holds a place in my heart.

    • Hunter VAnder Zwaag

      Operation overdrive horrified me. I saw the first, then I watched one in the middle of the season, and found out the red ranger was a robot. That ruined it. I felt like I had just been bulldozed.

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