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A Quick Tip by RabidChihuahua

  • Feb 19, 2013
Even when I was a kid, I never liked the Power Rangers.  The only thing I could say that I would say was redeeming about this show (and it's not even redeeming) is that Bulk and Skully were amusing at times, but the rest of the show sucked really bad.  This was another lame "monster of the week" type of show that gets old really fast.

Power Rangers may be impressive to kids who don't demand too much out of their entertainment, but grown up people will rightfully sneer at it.
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March 05, 2013
I've always has a bizarre relationship with POWER RANGERS. Nowadays, I find it embarrassing for the reasons you describe in your tip. But I do have to acknowledge that the Super Sentai genre (from which POWER RANGERS is based on) is monumentally popular in Japan, having been running nonstop since the 60's. Many of the old scholars who defend GODZILLA films (including the ones who provided info to rebuke Ebert's review of the first film) are also huge fans of Super Sentai shows.

I've personally never seen what the major appeal is for these shows. The fans of course will argue "The Japanese versions are better!" But I found them equally silly.  I think it's these kind of shows which make it hard for Americans to take serious live action Japanese scifi films like the original GOJIRA seriously.
March 05, 2013
I wonder what these scholars would say about Super Sentai shows, and I honestly wouldn't mind the idea of them if there was some more creativity in them.
March 05, 2013
Well to be honest, I'm not sure if "creativity" is the problem. If you've seen some of those early Super Sentai shows, the monster designs are just off the wall, lol.

Seriously though...the Super Sentai genre is basically the Japanese equivalent of American superhero TV shows/films like X-MEN. Same idea. The MASKED RIDER show, for example, has also been around for decades, probably even longer than Super Sentai. And of course, who can forget ULTRAMAN, which sort of marked a starting point for this "boom" (definitely a monster of the week setup for that show). They've all gone through a billion incarnations and stuff and still have hardcore fanbases even to this day. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kamen_Rider

Likewise, the scholars of tokusatsu (Japanese SPFX shows) usually radically defend them and argue that Americans just don't get 'em.

What does this have to do with POWER RANGERS? Tokusatsu fans generally argue that POWER RANGERS is a piss poor Americanization of this genre. All the creators of POWER RANGERS basically did was take the fight scenes and costumes from the Japanese shows and throw in American actors, dialogue, stories, and music for the dramatic parts.  It's the same thing they did to the original GOJIRA in 1956, except worse! 

While tokusatsu fans might be right in their defense of the Japanese originals, it's also clear that a lot of these shows were made for kids in the first place. So if you thought the subject matter of POWER RANGERS was very silly, then I don't think watching the Japanese version would make you think that differently. As much as it changes, POWER RANGERS is still just a translation of the same genre.  So personally, I didn't see THAT much difference in quality.  For example, maybe the actors are better, but it's kind of hard to tell because the actors in the Japanese shows are also young teens.

Like I said, I have not seen a lot of these shows, so I haven't been able to follow their trends and don't know a lot about which ones are good or bad. Like American superhero shows, they've had their ups and downs, so it's not really possible to gauge what a modern show would be like from watching a show in the 60's. You'd really have to go to an expert of this stuff to figure it out. I do understand they've tried to get darker and more serious as the years go by, but I'm not sure if the genre has ever produced a franchise with the depth and sophistication of something like WATCHMEN. But I do trust that out of the hundreds of TV shows to be produced in this genre, there has to be something good out there. It's tough to discuss this stuff blind.
March 06, 2013
I have an English penpal that's a huge fan of the Super Sentai shows, and upon his request, I did see a bit of Kamen Rider and that did have some crazy-ass monster designs that are pretty creepy, so I do give them credit in that area. 

I also know there's some pretty big differences to the American and Japanese versions of Power Rangers and the like, and even after sampling a little of the Japanese originals, they don't look that much better. 

When I meant "creative," I mostly meant with storylines because so many of these types of shows have the "monster of the week" formula that I have little tolerance for. Perhaps if these shows were instead restricted to movies or a TV miniseries, then the plot formula would probably stay relatively fresh.
March 06, 2013
Exactly. Super Sentai fans are growing to be almost as prominent as anime fans (*shudder*). While I'm always tempted to say "I don't like Super Sentai", I always find it hard to make such a blanket statement because I sure as hell haven't seen all the genre has to offer (hence the "bizarre relationship" mentioned above). Super Sentai stuff is just one of those things you're going to have to tolerate in Japanese pop culture.

Re: "creativity". Right, it gets old after a while.  That's why it's always put me off.  Like I said...despite the enormous popularity of the genre, I still have not encountered a franchise that has tried to do something new and challenging with it ala WATCHMEN or even the new BATMAN films.  But I'm not into it, so I don't know.  Or maybe the "sophisticated" scifi manga and anime make up for that deficiency. I don't know.
 
February 22, 2013
I will admit here and now that I liked Lord Zed, he reminded me of the gargoyles on "The Terror Within" [one of my favorite all time films] only with some metal on him.
 
February 19, 2013
heh. I have to admit I saw the movie on TV because of Kimberly and that other woman in the cave-girl outfit LOL!!
 
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David Kozak ()
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I'm a morbid cynic who thinks very, very differently from most other people. Chances are, if the majority says X is the greatest in its category, I'll disagree with that notion, because I tend … more
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