Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Are Power Rangers positive Role Models ?

Are Power Rangers positive role models?

@Fairywork gave me the idea that became this post. What is a role model? Mostly commonly known as someone who people strive to be like or try to copy their morals in their own life. Some people think the notion of basing your own life on someone else is pathetic. American parents have brought up the question about singers, actors and cartoon characters "Are they are good role model for our kids?" I personally see two sides of it. Saying kids or adults depend on a role model only on their life kind of suggests they have no free will. Or depending on actors, musicians and athletes to be role models is a little sort sighted and presumptuous. For example, depending on Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber to be positive role models is a little too much pressure on them and short-sighted as they are young people and artists---artists have to be experiment or if they think they are artists, ha ha.

Anyways, the other side of it is that kids have their parents and teachers as role models first. They don't necessarily have to have teachers as their role models but as speaking as a teacher, we at least try to be a good example. When it comes to Power Rangers or any other fictional character, are they being at least a positive example for children? With all the hula-ba-loo (controversy) about the violence in Power Rangers, how exactly do they measure up?

Perfect Teenagers
The Mighty Morphin teens basically fought evil, got perfect grades in school, and taught martial art classes (at least Jason, Zack and Trini), they found time to clean up the litter at a park, play on a football team, teach a self-defense class for moms, organize a food festival, organize after school programs, act in a school play, organize a talent show, bury a time capsule, organize a big birthday party and much much more. I haven't even listed all of Billy's accomplishments. These things made them 'positive role models' was that they were always polite, they studied, got good grades, they never got detention (except when framed by evil clones), and did lots of community service. Other Rangers that fall in this category are the Zeo/Turbo/Space Rangers, Dino Thunder Rangers, Alyssa of Wild Force, Mystic Force Rangers, Ninja Storm Rangers and Megaforce Rangers (even though not as much as with the volunteer work like MMPR). "Perfect Rangers" also applies for Samurai as they exercised regularly, ate healthy (well considered by Mia's standards) and never did anything 'bad.' Mike was rude to Jii from time to time but that quickly subsided.

 Law Enforcement and Public Service providers
Lightspeed Rangers were not police officers but most of them worked for public service like fire fighters, nurse/doctor, etc. As for SPD and Time Force, they were law enforcement. Jack and Z were former criminals and reformed. Ultimately Jack quit SPD but lost his life of crime and was helping homeless. Sometimes Jack did step out of line. RPM and Lost Galaxy Rangers could also be considered like them as they were connected with the government and were publicly known they were Rangers. The majority of Lost Galaxy Rangers worked for the GSA, which was in charge of Terra Venture. Now in RPM, Dillon and Ziggy were imprisoned for sneaking into Corinth but it was excusable I suppose after everything they did.

Questionable Behavior
Some Rangers did some things were 'out of line' or questionable. First off would be Justin, who Zordon chastised for teleporting for personal gain, which was escaping bullies. Leo stuck aboard the shuttle to get into Terra Venture, even though he did save an old lady from criminals and later saved the colony, this can be considered 'imitable behavior.' Disney had more questionable behavior (go figure), like Hunter and Blake who were working under Lothor because they though Sensei killed their parents. Hunter and Blake lied to the Rangers and cause harm to them. Sometimes under a spell. Trent and Tommy were 'evil' under a spell and I will cover them on the next topic. Other characters that have questionable behavior include SPD's Jack (already covered above), DT's Connor, MF's Nick, OO's Will and Ronnie, JF's Jarrod (even before evil influence), RPM's Dillon and Ziggy. Ziggy once tried to escalate a battle with some punks which is against Zordon's rules. But of course this was not during Zordon's era and Zordon wasn't mentioned in RPM.

"Under a Spell" excuse
Lots of Rangers did questionable behavior or negative things when under a spell. Majority of these were in the MMPR-In Space era but also happened in Lightspeed, Ninja Storm, Dino Thunder, Mystic Force, Jungle Fury, RPM and Megaforce. Let's cover the ones under an 'evil spell' like Tommy (MMPR), Kat (MMPR), Karone (In Space), Trent, Tenaya (RPM), Hunter and Blake. We first meet Tommy, he is an okay guy, we don't really know him well. Rita instantly puts him under an evil spell, he lies to Zack, Jason and Kimberly, he is mean to Kimberly, he sends Jason to the Dark Dimension without him knowing, messed up the Command Center and tried to vanish Zordon. As for Trent, he was an artist and a nice guy but became evil under the evil white stone and did various bad things. Eventually he got out of the spell and became good. When he learned his dad was Mesogog, he kept the secret from the other Rangers. Blake and Hunter were tricked and went under a spell of a monster. They eventually sided to good. As for Kat, she endangered Kimberly and others, took the Pink Power Coin, stole the Falconzord and various other things. She snapped out of it out of the goodness of her heart. She and Tommy later proved themselves to the Zeo Crystal, which could only be touched by those who are good.

 Tenaya and Karone were main villains who did very bad things but eventually were found out to be under evil spells. Karone, in fact, atoned for this. Tenaya did in her own way, given that she 'turned good' near the finale. As for Jarrod and Camille, Jarrod was possessed by Dai Shi and before so, he was selfish and conceded. Camile was bad through and through except for some semblance of good Lily saw. Their Japanese counterparts had to be forgiven in a battle and wanted to be killed, ultimately they sacrificed themselves for the greater good. But in Jungle Fury, they got a free pass with little to no consequence. Now as for the non-evil Rangers who went under spells, some did bad role model stuff. For example, most of the Rangers became selfish or childish (Kimberly and Billy in "Power Ranger Punks" and Kimberly in "Bloom of Doom" for example). All the Rangers except Aisha started hating each other and split up in "The Hate Monster." Can they be excuse for their behavior just because they were under a spell? Well that is the universal question when it comes to Power Rangers. Writers can let their characters be 'bad' with this excuse.

I think the Power Rangers are good role models because they don't escalate battles (for the most part) with the villains and they fight to save or protect people. This is explicitly stated in Power Rangers Samurai by Jayden. They try to strive for goodness and justice even if they don't always uphold those ideals. Most of the Power Rangers are honest, courageous, volunteer for the community, do their schoolwork if they are in school, are dependable, are there for their friends and so on, on and on. I hope I didn't insult anybody in my first paragraphs about having role models. You can have a role model, that's fine. Everyone can have anything they want. The reasons I bring this up because recently I have been criticized for being insensitive. But sometimes I can't worry about that, I just have to keep going doing what I do. Unlike the Power Rangers, I am allowed to make mistakes.

1 comment:

Jonathan said...

The rangers have to be good role models. They are now and parents still think its bad for kids. If they were punks and thugs, the show would've been torn to shreds. :)