Thursday, July 30, 2020

Power Rangers Reflections #23 - Grid Connection (Bite-Sized Edition)


Yes, I'm going to talk about that episode of Beast Morphers that features a crossover between the Dino Charge, Dino Thunder, and original Mighty Morphin brand of Power Rangers that hasn't aired yet.

How is this possible?

Well, someone uploaded the big crossover episode of Beast Morphers onto Facebook and I was able to watch it because it aired in the UK while we have to wait until Nick feels like airing them and I'd have to wait another year before they show up on Netflix. By the way, because this hasn't aired around these parts as of yet, there's a good chance people haven't seen the episode and it goes without saying that there be some spoilers, even if I'm not really going to touch on the plot of the episode all that much for reasons that will evident after the break.

SPOILERS AFTER THE BREAK...


For those who don't know, they used the one crossover episode of Super Sentai where they brought back the various Dino-themed teams Zyuranger, Abaranger, and whatever Dino Charge was... and Beast Morphers turned it into an episode where the Beast Morpher crew teams up with some of the Dino Charge crew and that pays off with Austin St. John coming back as Jason and nobody else because we couldn't afford them and expecting Hasbro or whoever was producing this to bring a lot of the former actors would be wishful thinking at best.

In a prior episode, the villains of Beast Morpher have revived Goldar and turned him into Goldar Maximus, who looks like a cheap cosplay version of the original character rather than a more powerful version. A comet apparently fell from the sky that Devon (the Red Ranger) takes to the Morphin Grid and the comet breaks to reveal the Tyrano Power Coin and that brings back Jason. After some friendly banter, the Dino Rangers and BM Rangers split off into their own adventures because the footage dictates that to be the case. We have some action bits, including the usual ground based stuff and some terrible CG-looking zord battles and everyone says their goodbyes. If I skipped something, it's because it's not worth mentioning.

My expectations were low because it's basically using Super Sentai footage and a lot of local voice actors to voice the Ranger crew - none of the Dino Thunder actors came in, so you have substitute voices that make no effort in trying to sound like the original actors and even the new Goldar Maximus is voiced by someone that isn't Kerrigan Mahan, who did the voice way back when - but it's unfair to judge this one episode when it's really part of a larger story. Dino Charge showed up, I think, a couple episodes prior, they brought back the big bad Goldar Maximus the episode before, and this is the climax. And without seeing those episodes, how do you judge the story and the build?

This isn't Legendary Farce, where they hyped up this epic thing and Megaforce was going to be the anniversary season and it ended up being a wet fart. Dimensions In Danger was just a one-off thing that could've benefitted from maybe more development and less JDF. And this just advertised ASJ and a crossover of Dino Rangers and by then, most people figured it best to temper the expectations somewhat. No AJJ, no Yost, that elusive Original Crew reunion was never going to happen and I've had my fix of JDF.

So as a crossover, it was just... it was alright. It was an episode of Power Rangers with a few more Rangers and that's about it, really. And it's Sentai footage and stock voice actors, so I don't know. This obviously is just to take advantage of some footage they have on hand to make it feel like a big deal and for the kids and fans who have been following this for a good long time, this is something to celebrate, I suppose. For me, it was like, cool, whatever.

Fortunately, this was not my first foray into Beast Morphers, as I have seen a couple episodes in the past (for future reference, I suppose) and for what it's worth, I think the show is alright for what it is, but not much more than that. I'll reserve further elaboration for a later entry, but from my limited exposure to the series thus far, Beast Morphers seems to be a better series than Megaforce or Operation Overdrive.

Maybe when I'm able to watch the preceding episodes, we'll do a follow-up of this down the line. As a solo crossover thing, I wasn't expecting much and as such, wasn't disappointed. It was exactly what it was and that's really all there is to it.

Reflections proper will return on August 28th.

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