It’s Morphin’ time! Again! Despite the apathetic response to the most recent incarnation of the Power Rangers, we might be getting another movie sooner, rather than later.
That’s the bad news. The good news is that if we do get yet another “Power Rangers” movie, this time it’ll be overseen by an entirely new creative team.
Toy company Hasbro has purchased many of Saban Entertainment’s big brands in a $500 million deal that now sees the Power Rangers moving to a new home.
According to an official statement, Hasbro is looking at the “Power Rangers” brand with the hope of “unlocking its full potential” in the near future.
The phrasing is interesting, considering that one of Hasbro’s biggest brands, “Transformers”, is arguably living up to its potential as a series of bombastic, explosive big budget movies.
I suspect that the “Power Rangers” might end up going in a very similar direction, and I’m excited. This might just work.
The “Transformers” Formula
As any hardcore fan of the series knows, the Power Rangers are themselves created out of footage from the Japanese “Super Sentai” television series, much as how the Transformers were built out of the “Diaclone” and “Microman” Japanese cartoons.
It makes sense to try and apply the action-packed Transformers formula to the Power Rangers as the series moves to a new home. Both franchises appeal to the same audience, and rely heavily on nostalgia. Old kids shows rule Hollywood for a reason.
This, presumably, would involve ditching the dour, grumpy, washed-out world of the most recent Lionsgate movie. Frankly, I can’t say that a lot will be lost, except perhaps for a positive representation of autism, and a tame discussion about sexuality.
The recent “Power Rangers” movie leans a little too heavily on the teenage angst side of its mythos. Sometimes, we just want to see colorful costumes, giant robots, and cute, quirky dialogue.
This being the case, I’m fully on board for a reboot at Hasbro. If what we get is a little more cut from the “Transformers” cloth, that’s great! So long as the movie doesn’t go full Michael Bay.
Yes, I’m arguing for more movies like “Transformers”, but bear with me on this. This might sound ridiculous, but there is some benefit to making a chaotic, energetic movie instead of a teenage grump-fest.
It’d be nice, for example, if a new movie didn’t lose all of the character and spirit of the new movie. I want to see heroes with personal struggles. I just don’t want these to feel utterly unconnected to the giant robot martial arts stuff.
Balancing Angst and Fun
Simple and childish as it might be, the classic “Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers” show actually manages to blend these two sides of the story together.
Maybe Billy is struggling with painful memories of being bitten by a fish, and then has to fight an aquatic monster. The colorful costumes act as a metaphor for the challenges of growing up, instead of feeling wholly separate to each hero’s sad teenage emotions.
Basically, I want a “Power Rangers” movie that’s actually fun while still being meaningful, and I’m hoping that Hasbro can provide this.
Surely that’s not too much to ask? Right?