Saturday, September 7, 2013

Kamen Rider Wizard 50

Kyoryuger 28 Images

Power Rangers Megaforce - Man and Machine Episode Review

Ultra mode and Tensou now included in the opening.
Thanks to as always for pics.

Shadow Serpent is called by Bigs from a lake. Noah gives Mr. Burley something he forgot. There is a reference to the Lochness Monster who is what the monster is based on. A construction worker and hot dog vender are frozen in place as the monster eats their shadows. A father plays catch with his son at the park. He sits with his wife when their shadows are nabbed. The poor boy calls his parents but they don't move. The Rangers are practicing at the park. Gia is about to give Jake a high five until Tensou calls. Robo Knight asks the boy who stole the shadows, the boy doesn't know, RK tells him it will be okay. Shadow Serpent and Robo Knight meet.

Robo Knight stays in the shadows and tells the Rangers to do the same as they arrive. Shadow Serprent takes down the tree they were hiding under. Red grabs Shadow Serpent, Robo Knight had a shot but wanted Red to move. It gets cloudy and Shadow Serpent leaves. The teens de-morph, RK tells them it is their fault. Jake says he is a jerk. Troy says Shadow Serpent will be back. Vrak and Bluefur go to Shadow Serpent. Vrak knows the Rangers are clever.

 Robo Knight is confronted by Troy. Troy has an idea, to work as a team. They can act like bait and RK will do an attack. Robo Knight says no, it is too much of a risk, he doesn't plan, just attack. Troy tells him to think about it, that he will see him on the battlefield. Bigs and Shadow Serpent talk under darkness. Vrak arrives and tells him that Creepox underestimated the Rangers. Shadow Serperent says Vrak has a lack of confidence in him.

At the juice bar, Emma asks Troy about Robo Knight and is positive. Troy says not everything is easy. At night, Robo Knight says the humans are complicating things. As the sun comes up, both RK and Shadow Serpent snap to action. Shadow Serpent and the six Rangers fight. Yellow and Blake make a quake, Blue makes it rain and Pink and Red make clouds, to make it dark. Shadow Serpent cracks through what they did. Circuits are overheated for Robo Knight, the Rangers say they won't leave him. They do the roll call in a quarry. The Rangers tell RK on how emotions are good and teamwork works. RK relates them to gears in a motor. Troy says their powers combine, it multiples everything. They use their Megaforce Blaster on the monster but after explosion, he is still in one piece. He tells them, "5 times zero is still zero."

 Troy tells RK they will do the plan they spoke of. Shadow Serpent steals their shadows and RK attacks the monster. Robo Knight destroys the monster. Monster calls for Vrak. Malkor asks Vrak who the monster is from his space ship. Vrak tells him to look and he makes the monster grow. The Rangers call their zords and the two Megazords (Gosei Grand and Gosei Great Megazords) fight together. They then get a new card to combine their zords (Gosei Great Grand Megazord) and defeat the monster. The people return to normal. The teens are then happy RK is an official member of the team and Jake thought that Rk was going to give them a 'robo hug.' Gia says that RK is tough as nails. Noah asks if they are related. Jake and Gia chase after Noah.

Good effort, entertaining episode. Maybe too much plot referencing. Nice reference to Creepox. Some fans were saying what took Malkor so long to notice what Vrak was doing if he is observing from his space ship. But it has only been 2 episodes since the mutants arrived.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Lavender Ranger's Editioral: Why I think Power Rangers and Super Sentai are Boy's Franchises

UPDATED 9/9/13 7:30 PM EST
The reason I put 'Why I think' when I really believe that both Toei and Saban, even Disney believe this is because fans do not agree with this notion. It is understandable. I used to be bothered by this. The reason it is bothersome is on its surface (two females per most teams and focus on female characters and scattered female empowerment) the show serves both to boys and girls, but there are a lot of facts that show it is the Boy's franchise. Let me clear that what I mean is that the companies consider it a boy's franchise, I am not saying girls and women should not watch the show or enjoy it. What I am basically saying is that Toei, Saban and Disney (at one point) consider boys the target audience.
Age demographic
When I was 11, I didn't like that the show was aimed at kids. Nowadays it seems to be aimed to boys ages 2-11 (, while the toys say 4 and up and the TV rating is TV-Y7. With Samurai, there is now Halloween costumes for toddlers but still not infants. And being a teacher, I see kids from Pre-Kindergarten to 2nd grade like it, by 3rd grade they start denying they like it. Many kids over 8 say 'it's for little kids' even though parents have protested its 'violence' since the show began.

I have mentioned before on this blog about female empowerment (Lauren in Samurai and Jen in Time Force for example) and fans wanting more female toys. In 1994, Bandai released dolls based on Yellow Ranger and Pink Ranger which only lasted two years and were never done again. Bandai has reported for years before that the girl figures don't sell well. In Japan, some dolls for girls were released through the years but for random teams (Bioman, Changeman, etc.) and there was the short-lived 'Girls in Uniform' collectibles line that ran from 2006-2008 that had heronies and villainesses. But there is no girls costumes or girls clothing anymore. When asked if a female could lead a series, Toei producers said toy stores wouldn't support a boy's line lead with a girl. Probably the reason Ninja Red and Time Red were the lead in promotion in their series that girls lead them. At Wal-Mart in America back in 2006, Bandai wanted to have an exclusive figure for White Mystic Ranger called Winter Ranger but they didn't think it would sell well. 

 In 1993, Neilsen report said that 40% of the audience was girls. "According to Ms. Margaret Loesch, approximately 40 percent of the "Power Rangers" audience is girls as opposed to about 20 percent for other Fox children's programs."

This other article about Power Rangers being blamed in the death of a little girl at the hand of three boys also states 40 percent of the audience are girls. 40 percent doesn't sound like a lot but in a boy's franchise it is. I couldn't find an article of what the percentage is now.

Greg Aronowitz on his blog stated that Disney said that SPD helped bring up the percentage of female viewership. Thanks to @morphin_k for the article.
- Majority of backpacks, lunch boxes and birthday supplies have only the male Rangers present
- Power Rangers clothing (underwear, t-shirts) for children is mostly made for boys these days. Same in Japan.
- At McDonalds, Power Rangers is now exclusively for boys as the meals are split from boys and girls since Dino Thunder (2004).
- In Japan, there are only one figure made per female. There are some chibi figures but majority are male. All the Rangers including female appear in majority of products and merchandise but they are usually smaller than the males.

  The Yellow Issue
  In the early Saban days, if there was one female in Sentai, they would turn Yellow from male to female. In Japan, Yellow Rangers used to be considered males. The first Yellow Ranger Ki Ranger was male. Since 2006 with Boukenger (which became Operation Overdrive) Yellow has been a female color. In fact the Toei now considers Yellow a female color because it has been used so much for females. They didn't want to use Yellow in Kyoryuger because they considered it too feminine, they wanted mostly males because the Kyoryugers needed to be believable (in their eyes) to beat up their dinosaurs to tame them. I suppose Kyoryu Pink and her dino could be excusable in their eyes. American fans were upset that there was only one female Kyoryuger in what seemed to be 10 Kyoryugers. Now we have a female Kyoryu Violet, making 2 females in about 12 Kyoryugers. Some fans even joked that Saban should make their own Yellow Ranger when Kyoryuger is adapted which I doubt them making.

 In the Power Rangers Megabloks nowadays, they make more Yellow products than Pink, seeing Yellow more excusable for boys. With Power Rangers, Yellow Rangers are considered female, even though there has been 3 male Yellow Rangers. My 26 year-old nephew says he still considers Yellow a girl color. My 3 year-old grand nephew liked Yellow last year and when given the option of dressing as a Yellow Ranger for Halloween, my 26 year-old nephew who is my grand nephew's uncle didn't like that option. It is interesting.

I do think it is a boys franchise but even though it is a male franchise, doesn't mean girls can't enjoy it too. Super Sentai tried only once to have the series without women (Sun Vulcan) back in the 80's. I think females do enjoy Power Rangers but probably not at the same frequency as males. As for adults, there are a lot of women's clothing and products now but I think it has to deal with the nostalgia factor. I do still think Saban should try to do more products for girls like back in 1993. Things have changed in the past 20 years what with Powerpuff Girls, Monster High and Sailor Moon. Sailor Moon is also 20 years old and hopefully will return to the US with the new Anime coming soon. I don't think Power Rangers being a boy's franchise is a bad thing. I say embrace it. Maybe it can be seen as just a cover that is it marketed to boys, it can serve for both girls and boys while on its surface being meant for boys.