Saturday, October 2, 2010

More Power Ranger Samurai Info and the Samurai uniforms

Here is the video, it has MMPR the movie footage with other PR seasons and in the end, Shinkenger footage and the Samurai logo. Also a foreshadowing of the Gold Ranger, sixth. People are commenting on how the new season is being referred to as the 19th season, meaning they are counting the MMPR re-version as the 18th season.

See the video here:
Marvista Entertainment Website

There you go to those who thought Disney quit on Power Rangers because quote 'Shinkenger is un-adaptable' and that Shinkenger is 'too Japanese.' In your face, anything is adaptable.

Above is a capture of a video Hector David Jr. (Mike) posted on his facebook. I don't know who captured it, let me know if it was you.

Saban Brands/Power Rangers at MIPCOM:

Thank Yous

UDPATED 10/2/10 11PM EST
I would really thank people who have commented on my posts, contributed to my blog and suggested topics for my blog.

I am just going to list the screen names
Brad Sharp (Zaxxon Q Blaque)
Brandon M. Baker
Casey Bohn
Fantasy Leader
James Spiring
Kandou Erik
Mr. Smith
Raúl from Spain
Sean Akizuki
The Legendary Hero

If I have forgotten you, it is because of my faulty memory. Let me know.

Longevity and Continuation of Power Rangers

I was thinking about the long road Power Rangers has taken from being a low-cost show taking footage from an existing Japanese franchise and re-purposing it with a Western cast and Western ideals and morals, that with all its fans, it was almost 'canceled' (used as an operative word since it never was officially canceled but new episodes were not produced for an entire year), we never had to form a petition to continue the show. Well, maybe a petition was made but I am not sure. There was an outcry about the re-version of the first season by fans but I think then we got the news Saban was taking over the franchise again and then we put hold on it all. For example, "Angel" was a popular series (being a spin-off from "Buffy") and was on the verge of being canceled by the WB after its 100 episodes and 5 seasons, fans had an outpouring of petitions, e-mails, postcards and letters to the WB and TV Guide not to cancel the show, but in the end, it was fruitless because the show did end being canceled.

In other cases, Family Guy was canceled by FOX and still was able to resurrect several years later after good ratings on the Cartoon Network and DVD sales. PR is so strong, it didn't even need us (the fans) to revive it. Haters can continue hating (Seth McFarlane if he's reading this) but it won't do anything. My point is that Power Rangers never had to resort to that, people may make fun of it but the fact of the matter is, even with its current hiatus of not being on the air right now at this second, Power Rangers has survived and will survive and hasn't been off the air in the relative sense of being canceled completely (albeit this hiatus right now which is relatively short in TV terms---what six months tops, right?). In other words, (deep sigh--I can't believe I'm typing this but....) Go Go Power Rangers!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Perverts, Pedophiles and Scoundrels in Super Sentai

Super Sentai is unique to Power Rangers in that it has more deaths, blood, violence, and sexual innuendo, including perverts, pedophiles, rapists and etc. Now, the majority of these characters are villains, but there is also been a few minor characters, allies, even Rangers with certain undesirable traits. I might be missing some.

Master Elehan Kempo (Gekiranger, 2007)
I am not sure if there were perverted allies in Super Sentai before but Elehan definitely comes to mind. He had a thing for grabbing women, especially his student Ran but she quickly established boundaries. He didn't seem to have a thing for little girls as Miki let her young daughter near him and he didn't try anything--but it could be that she openly didn't put up with his behavior that he knew better but of course being perverted doesn't equate being a pedophile. The Japanese culture are more open to having perverted characters and writers like showing them.

Kou (Kibaranger/Dairanger-1993)
Kou was just a kid, and kids are mischievous. He grabbed Lin's boob when he first met her and he even used his chi powers as Kibaranger to blow girls' skirts up, But after his initial appearance, he never did this behavior again. I believe he is the only Ranger to be so overt in this behavior. Most male Rangers have been respective to women, I think some of the early ones may have been womanizers but all the series I've seen they have respected women.

Now here are villains and monsters that have had that behavior...
Onbu-Obake (1996)
Onbu-Obake of Ohranger Vs. Kakuranger was a Youkai that was a male pervert and rapist. He had a fetish for young, pretty girls, whom he would abduct to take their souls with a few licks from his long tongue. He would also possess people.

General Cactus (1993)
I have mixed feelings about this guy. He was a pedophile and would get little girls, paralyze them and use them as dolls. Now why it bothers me is because he was effeminate, like the producers were equating that homosexuals are the same thing as pedophiles. It used to be a old stereotype that people thought pedophiles were gay. Even back in the 70's or something a LGBT organization briefly acknowledged pedophiles part of them but very briefly and retracted it. Anyway, I would like to think that they just added the effeminate thing because to be colorful, that he liked girls and not boys.

In Abaranger (2003), when Mahoro (Later known as Jannu) was taken by the Evorian, she was pregnant with Asuka's child. The child would have been called Kasumi. Nobody knew she was pregnant. She and Mizuho went to fight Dezumorzorlya and they were captured in the process. Dezumozorlya sent his demon seed through her to create Rije, so basically Mahoro was raped by Dezumorlya.

In Magiranger, Smoky was really gross and mischievous, he grabbed Urara's boobs once, he farted in everyone's faces now and he gave a black magic book to Tsubasa.

I know I missed a bunch, let me know. I like that allies have been allowed to not be perfect, it is only the villains that are perverts, etc. I mean, of course no ally or hero has been a rapist.

Hero Profile: Tommy Oliver

A comment by Fantasy Leader about fans who love Tommy and only watch shows with Tommy in them to response to my post about Power Ranger fans. This spun me to do this post about Tommy Oliver, I have thought of doing this post before.
Tommy Oliver was introduced to us in the 14th episode (production wise) of the first season, a skilled martial artist who Kimberly quickly had a liking to was put under a spell by Rita to become her own personal evil Green Ranger. He quickly joined the team after the spell was broken and quickly got into fans' hearts. The Tommy character was phased out with the Green Candle because of lack of footage of Zyuranger (In Zyuranger, Dragon Ranger died because he died during his cryogenic freezing and his spare life was tied to the candle). Nobody, not even Saban Entertainment, could have predicted the popularity of the character. They had planned for Jason David Frank to lead his own show and they shot a pilot called Cybertron and he played Adam Steele, taking footage from Toei's Metalder. Because of popular demand, the Tommy character was brought back and Brad Hawkings who was in line for the White Ranger, was cast for VR Troopers as I have mentioend before.

So what made Tommy so popular? With kids, I think it was the combination of the cool shield, costume and the notion that he was once evil. The 5-part saga was awesome because it dismantled everything that we knew and was established. He was a cool villain, he took pleasure in making Zordon disappear. Also, those who are attracted to men also had a crush on Tommy as much as Kimberly did. I remember around 1994 girls in school talking about how cute Tommy was. He was a bit of a bad boy redeemed, now good. Little boys thought the Dragonzord was cool. So when Tommy became the leader as the White Ranger, it made him even more popular--as he was now in charge and had a cool outfit. All little boys looked up to Tommy. I remember my nephew dressed as the Green Ranger for Halloween in 1993 and my cousin did so the next year.

In Dino Thunder, Hayley was quoted for saying that Tommy wasn't the oldest Power Ranger but 'the best.' Fans that aren't that don't exactly hate Tommy but aren't that crazy about him, wouldn't necessarily agree with that. I can only speak for myself, I have no problem with Tommy and when he returned in Dino Thunder, I thought it was cool, I had no problem that he came back and found it interesting. I did find that his new background of being a paleontologist and professor not quite match with the Tommy we knew but I knew it was necessary to go along with the series and did show he did indeed 'grow up.' I think for sure Tommy's popularity also goes hand and hand with Jason David Frank, his martial arts, charisma, etc. You can say what you want about JDF, that he is not the greatest actor, whatever, but you got to admit he has 'it,' something there.

Yes, I know I skipped that he was the Red Zeo and Turbo Ranger, so let's continue the story. He became the Zeo Ranger V Red and the Red Turbo Ranger. Years later he returned for "Forever Red" and was mocked by the other Red Rangers for being 'the best.' And then returned as the Black Ranger for Dino Thunder. Continuation-wise, he was last mentioned in Operation Overdrive where Kira referred to Dr. O and Adam said he couldn't believe 'that guy is a doctor.'

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Different Type of Power Rangers Fans

Now I am not trying to create a flame war by inciting different groups of fans or pegging fans into groups and saying they are just those traits and should remain in those groups, but in an effort to not be in a niche group and be more open to newcomers or non-Power Ranger fans, this post is about different type of fans. Now, these are my own opinions and not in any means set in stone. Fans can resemble different types of these fans and are not stuck in these roles, and can be one or two of these groups. I for example, I am little bit of them all. There could also be another group of fans not mentioned in this post. I do not want to divide fans, just highlight the variety of fans within a whole.

'Zordon Era' Longtime Fans
These are fans that grew up with PR and are still PR Fans and prefer the 'Zordon Era' (First Season to Sixth Season-In Space). They don't like the changing seasons and don't like anything after 'In Space.' Now, this can also include fans that haven't seen the Disney Era.

'Saban Era' Longtime Fans
These are fans that are still Power Ranger fans but don't like the 'Disney Era' and like everything from MMPR to Wild Force. They don't exactly have to love all the seasons but they have no major problems with Time Force, etc.

Former Power Ranger Fans
This includes my cousins who liked Power Rangers when it was popular. This group includes people who only saw the first few seasons and or grew up with it but no longer watch the show and no longer follow it. Also, this could include fans that didn't know it was still airing. Plus, those who wear Power Ranger adult shirts 'ironically.'

Power Ranger at Heart Fans
These are fans that grew up on Power Rangers as a kid and are now in early twenties and not gave up on Turbo like older fans but stopped watching around Lightspeed and Time Force, they still like it but can't follow it right now because of work or school. They are aware that the show is still on and about Disney but haven't seen the episodes. This includes my friend Sean.

'Saban Era' and 'Disney Era' Fans
I don't think there is fans that exclusively like Disney Era other than children, and most of them don't really know the difference between Saban and Disney, so these fans I am talking about are fans like me that like it all, regardless. Every season has its merits to me. These fans also include those that are used to the cast changing every year because of Super Sentai. I am a sub teacher and spoken to kids who used to watch Power Rangers, they give up somewhere around 1st and 2nd grade, one fourth grader told me he remember the Boom episode of SPD but he knew nothing of before SPD.

Power Ranger/Super Sentai Fans
Power Ranger fans that has learned about Super Sentai at one point, it had to be after 1993 but it doesn't matter what season after Power Rangers started. They had to be Power Ranger fans to begin with. For example, I know some fans that just discovered Super Sentai and I discovered it around when In Space was airing, so I consider us in the same group.

Power Rangers/Non-Super Sentai Fans
Power Ranger fans that don't like Super Sentai and find it silly and/or don't like to be spoiled so they don't follow Super Sentai not to be spoiled with the future of Power Rangers.

Super Sentai/Non-Power Rangers Fans
Believe or not, there are fans that only like Super Sentai and don't like Power Rangers. They might have grown up with Power Rangers but when they discovered Super Sentai, they no longer watch Power Rangers, nor follow it as much. They appreciate the Japanese culture and understand the comedy, violence, sexual innuendo and drama. OR they just grew up seeing Super Sentai. (Doesn't have to be in Japan, Super Sentai has been broadcasted through the years in Brazil, France, Philippines, Indonesia, Korea, and even Hawaii and California in the U.S. on local access channels)

Long Time Tokusatsu Fans
These are people are in their late thirties or older that knew about Super Sentai, Kamen Rider and Ultraman before Power Rangers came out. They could have grown up with Tokusatsu or seen one series before Power Rangers started. They could like and watch Power Rangers or not follow it.

Now within all of these groups of fans, there are types that are common in any fandom (Star Wars, Star Trek, Buffy, DC Comics, Marvel, etc.). I can even be like either or all of these types from time to time. And of course, there is probably other type of fans. You yourself, who is reading this, might not fit within these following perimeters:

Panicky Fans
Self-explanatory, they worry about every little thing. They jump the gun and start assumptions about things without any justification. They accept rumors as fact.

Over-Defensive Fans
Angry fans, who get insulted by any insulation and instantly start fighting with people.

Smug Fans
They are quickly dismissive of rumors and think they know better than everyone.

Calm Fans
Believe or not, they do exist, many that are very calm and take new news with a grain of salt and enjoy the ride.

Nit-Picky Fans
These fans pick every little detail, and most likely blame producers or writers or actors for a bad season. There are followers of the writers of an episode and blame the badness of the episode on the writer. There are fans that dislike the seasons produced by Bruce Kalish or Doug Sloan for example. There are some kind of nit-picky fans that nit-pick stuff like if the female Blue Rangers (Ninja Storm and Mystic Force) have different shades of blue.

Oblivious Fans
Fans who you can explain over and over again about facts and truths and they still don't get it. For example, they still don't understand why there wasn't a teamup in RPM.

Peacekeeper Fans
Fans that try to keep the peace between fandoms.

Also, Power Ranger fans aren't always exclusively fans of Tokusatsu, we step our feet in everything. For example, I am also a big hardcore Buffy fan.

How come Power Rangers and Super Sentai has last so long

Zaxxon Q Blaque made the above collage.

Many people tell me they didn't know that the Power Rangers was 'still going on,' and in June at the Brand Licensing Expo, Elie Dekel (President of Saban Brands) was asked how Power Rangers has been able to last so long. Out of what he said, one important element is change, that the show changes every year (since 1996-Zeo of course). I have covered before why I love Power Rangers and what other people like about it, but I personally believe it is also in part of Super Sentai, the source footage, which many of PR Producers don't mention in interviews. Many times PR Producers badmouth the footage, I believe in part of time delays, tight schedules and cultural differences. But the team of Toei (TV/Movie/Writing), Bandai (toys), Plex (designs) and Rainbow Productions (monsters) is so well-honed in knowing what kids love (different themes). It is well-honed because of experience.

Power Rangers and Super Sentai are an elite combination of action, martial-arts, drama, comedy, special effects and creative writing. Bandai Japan does listen to the kids, Gaoranger's multiple animals were in part that children asked for more robots. And other robo combinations after that was because of demand. Super Sentai has been going on for almost 35 years in Japan and it is an institution, more than three generations have already grown up with it. It is like their own Superman and many actors are honored to be part of it. But elsewhere around the World, it is seen as Power Rangers and Power Rangers are often followed with a laugh. But it survives because of change, it changes so much--being different but albeit all the familiar to viewers. We all know the deal, five young people in color costumes fighting rubber costumed monsters that grow after being destroyed in an explosion and the five enter giant robots to fight the enlarged monster. (Some people might not like the fighting giants thing, but 35 years and 18 years of tradition haven't stirred them wrong yet.)

But because of the new themes we get something new and exciting to look forward to each time. And the surprises might change in order and circumstance. As Power Rangers and Super Sentai has gone on, each year we might get more robots (or zords) than the last team, or a new color (Silver in Megaranger/PRiS or Violet in Gekiranger/Jungle Fury) or 14 new Rangers in one series (SPD) or even a female Red Ranger. So this new things are enticing. David Yost (Billy) said in a recent interview that he wished Saban kept the same cast longer than a year, for the actors to have stability and viewers to get hooked on one group and stick with them. But I think the revolving cast really helps and that most of the cast is usually newcomers because it is a learning ground of new actors and viewers won't get sick of certain characters. Changing cast keeps it fresh.

Super Sentai has kept this as tradition and that I know of, no past castmember has complained, most of them come back for a cameo as the same character or came in and play a fresh new character. In Power Rangers, especially during the Disney years, actors came back in a different role, so I think there is always opportunities for actors, especially if they are good and reliable. In conclusion, Power Rangers has been able to continue because it evolves like a phoenix from the ashes but has the same DNA, which is familiar. You see a colorful helmet and spandex-like suit, you know it's Power Rangers--our parents couldn't tell the difference. But nowadays most fans from the past are now parents.

Oh and I want to clarify that I believe Power Rangers and Super Sentai are separate entities. Even though they 'look' alike, most fans do consider them different, not only because of language and culture but because of writing and tone.

Related: |

Presenting Shinkenger S.H. Figure Art (Along with female Shinken Red!)

Funny enough when I was saying that the Japanese hadn't release a female Shinken Red figure yet, they unveil this. SHFiguarts are kits that you can put together your favorite figures. Here's a set of S.H.Figuarts of the Shinkengers. These pictures are prototype displays at the Tamashii Nation 2010 in Akihabara, Japan. They are coming soon, the two Shinken Reds are to be released first and then the other Shinkenger later (Including Shinken Gold).


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Poll Results: Human Tackle / Blog / Red Samurai / Actor's Past

What do you like most about this blog?
Pictures - 106 of 436 votes by 141 people
The Polls - 95 (yay!)
Trivia - 93
Commentary - 72
The Lists - 70

Do you consider Human Tackle a Kamen Rider?
Yes, because look at Riderman - 66 of 129
No - 40
Yes, Of course! - 23

Most likely a girl Samurai Red Ranger won't be sold by itself but in a set because Bandai America says girl toys don't sell, so would you buy it in what kind of set?
With a set with 4 figures - 65 of 120
With a big vehicle - 30
With a headquarters - 22
With a set of 2 or 3 bikes - 3
Along with 4 other figures, I believe people would prefer blue, yellow, green and pink.

Does it matter to you an Actor's past?
Doesn't Matter - 77 of 143
Depends - 58
It Does - 8