Sunday, October 9, 2011

Super Sentai 1990-2000: Series by Series

I did Power Rangers Season By Season but never really thought it through to make a post about Super Sentai series, I decided to divide it by decades, but I won't be doing 1975-1989 because I haven't seen enough of those series nor do I have the time nor interest, maybe Sean Akizuki will do it. Hint Hint.  
Fiveman (1990)
 I've only seen the first episodes and not the end, it is a fun series. I liked the action sequences, especially does in the desert. Siblings who are all teachers but were in Space once with their parents, who they thought to be dead. The most memorable episode is when the bad guys made the water into alcohol and Yellow got drunk and did a special drunk fighting style. Themes are Family, Destiny, Teamwork, Memories, Dedication and Responsibility.

Jetman (1991)
A beloved series by fans, many Japanese call it 'Trendy' because it was inspired by trendy soap operas. When you watch it, it just sucks you in. Gai is such an awesome character, bad boy lancer. Basically the story is about airforce military types that had to be sprayed by birdwaves but it got sprayed on 4 normal people. Red had to fight his old lover. White was a priss, Blue a teenage girl, Yellow was portly and Black was a badboy. Themes include Love, Responsibility, Redemption, the Past, and Acceptance.

Zyuranger (1992)
Many people who didn't grow up with MMPR says it is a bad series, a muddled mess, but for some reason, I and many other MMPR fans find it intriguing, as much of the footage brings up positive memories. This series often has narrator, some scenes have obvious little budget and the others have great effects. It deals with Gods and Devils with giant metal robots and old hags in brown rags. Plus the great hero Burai wants revenge on his brother, who doesn't know why and naively and blindly wants to be buddy buddy with his bro. There is some screwed up stuff like Elf attacking his own son, to sotp him from awakening Burai. Eventually Burai dies and Gai inherits his shield and Dragon Ceasar. At the end, Bandora is trapped again and the Zyuranger ascend to heaven. Themes include Revenge, Redemption, Family, Destiny, Sacrifice, Taking risks and Facing your fears.

Dairanger (1993)
 I saw the whole series dozens of times, I think it stills holds up. It is a solid arc of drama and strife. Sure there are plot holes and many questions to be answered, but I think it is part of its quality. This series also holds up the mantle of being the bloodiest Sentai ever, and after this, the following series had less blood. Most of the blood shed was between Ryou and Jin Matoba, the assassin turned Gorma. Sometimes it gets repeative, like with the Kujaku arc, but other than that, it is pretty solid. The only character who doesn't get much development is Kazu. Themes include Responsibility, Family, Redemption, One's Past, Love, Revenge, and Sacrifice.

Kakuranger (1994)
The series would try to be serious but has a colorful commentator and wild onamonapia graphics. The villains Youkai have modern inspirations, given them an exaggerated look. Some don't like it and some others kind of like it, I haven't heard of anyone truly loving it completely. But it's not a bad series. Tsuruhime is the unspoken leader, Sasuke is still seen as the token leader. Themes are Not judging books by their covers, Teamwork, Family, Truth, Responsibility and Love. 

Ohranger (1995)
 I found this series sort of boring, and that is just me. It is serious and slow moving tale. Rumors are that because of a disaster in Japan having to do with Violence, the series was drastically changed in mood and tone. A lot happens to the villains, but it is not exactly character development, they don't change in personality. Themes are Adversary, Facing one's past, Betrayal, Acceptance, Truth, Deception, Dedication, and Teamwork.

Carranger (1996)
I've seen a big chunk of the series but not the whole thing, it is not as goofy as people might think. There is slapstick humor and satire elements but the Carranger fighting evil is taking seriously and the actors don't act like their duty is a joke. The 'goofy' elements are the exaggerated looking villains, the insane campy plots and Dappu the alien of course. Themes include Respect, Confidence, Believing in one's self, Dedication, Truth, Acceptance, Fish out of water, and Teamwork.

Megaranger (1997)
Teenagers fighting evil doesn't often happen in Super Sentai as a whole team, usually it is just one teen or so. It is a fun series, many fans have mention to me it is a great series, I haven't seen the whole thing to be honest. Themes include growing up, responsibility, trust, acceptance and discipline.

Gingaman (1998)
Some people might not like it but it is a pretty straight-forward fairy tale-like story with themes of fantasy, family, destiny, love, revenge, understanding and deflection. I admit I haven't seen the whole series. Ryouma has doubts about being leader, when Hyuga was meant to be Gingared, but was believed to be dead.

GoGoV (1999)
I found this series pretty boring but that is my own opinion. It is mostly serious and stand-alone episodes. The villains have characterization but don't seem that fleshed out. It has themes of Family obviously, Never Give up, connections, Dedication, Betrayal, Redemption, Secrets and Love. I admit I haven't seen the whole series.

Timeranger (2000)
A solid serious but fun series, it brings up relevant questions like destiny versus free will. Tatsuya is a modern-day philosopher, rallying together four strangers from the future. Naoto is a tragic story and an anti-hero, he wants all the glory and when he grows a heart and sacrifices others, he dies. Themes include Death, Destiny, Self Worth, One's Past, Betrayal, Selfishness, Responsibility, Truth, Love, Understanding and Teamwork.


Fantasy Leader said...

Fiveman: I personally think this show is the weakest of the 90s. I didn't find the characters to be all that memorable (the exception being FiveYellow) and the villains all just derailed in the second half. Plus, most of the plots were rather annoying and unimaginative. And the finale was a complete mess. Fiveman is basically a remake of Flashman, but not nearly as epic.

Jetman: A very well made series.

Zyuranger: Zyuranger is an okay show. It's not nearly as good as MMPR fans say it is (since they usually love it just for the sake of comparisons). Nor is it nearly as bad as most Zyu-haters say it is. I usually rank this show in the middle.

Dairanger: Another fascinating series. I wouldn't really say there are plot holes. Since plot holes are story elements that contradict each other, not stuff that are unsaid. Also, I think Kazu had plenty of development. Sure, not as much as the other five, but I think he was still a great part of the show.

Kakuranger: I REALLY LOVE THIS SHOW VERY MUCH! A lot of it's eps are really well written and fun to watch. And the characters are all a really fun bunch too. And the themes that the plots follow are just simply excellent. This show is a really good successor to Dairanger.

Ohranger: Yeah, Ohranger's plot is rather muddled. But I think the eps are fun for what they are. Plus, most fans praise the cast of characters in this season a lot. So while not a great sentai season, I'd say it's still a fun little watch.

Carranger: A lot of people tend to describe Carranger the wrong way. It's not constant funny like many believe it is. Carranger tries to act like a normal season, but with a very bizarre concept which just completely parodies itself. It even has some breaking the fourth wall moments. A very well-written series imo. Possibly the most well written of the 90s (yes, more than Jet, Dai, and Time).

Megaranger: Yes, Megaranger is a very good series.

Gingaman: Gingaman is a very fascinating series. IMO, it takes many elements of old school sentai and new school sentai (during the time) and perfectly meshes them both together much better than any other sentai season could to this date. Yeah, some non-Japanese fans are iffy on it due to that fan conspiracy that Rangerboard started. <__<

GoGoFive: Easily one of the most well made sentai seasons to date. Fans in Japan REALLY love this season, which is something non-Japanese fans have yet to accept. I do think GoGoFive is a much better season than like Timeranger. It has very well fleshed out heroes and villains and the interaction dynamics are very well done.

Timeranger: Obviously a fan favorite.

Daniel J. said...

I love Kakuranger as well, so many robots and such an awesome team. Megaranger is also awesome and I've also seen episodes of Zyuranger and Dairanger, which were great. Most of my exposure to this decade comes from the crossovers, except for the series mentioned above and I love the crossovers, especially the ones involving the Carrangers. This was a good decade overall.

Cássio said...

Am I the only one that thinks Carranger was goofy BECAUSE the characters (and actors) took it seriously?

I mean, watching them arrive on those lame karts was fun, but not as hilarious as the fact that they actually acted like serious business while they did it.