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Old school Power Rangers, how I miss thee – CliqueClack Flashback

It's morphin' time! Who knew those three simple words would have such a profound impact on my life? Call me a nerd, but the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers were one of the best things about my childhood ... and possibly my teen years. As I look back on one of my favorite shows, I'm surprised to make a discovery ... and it has nothing to do with the Black Ranger being African-American!

Power Rangers

It is common knowledge that I have a thing for people in spandex. I do. It’s true. Now, before your mind begins to drift to naughty places, please give me a second to clarify my statement. To be more unambiguous, I have a thing for superheroes. Without hesitation, I’ll admit that I am a card carrying nerd and proud. Growing up, I found myself frequently daydreaming of solving crimes while working in a Batcave, expertly piloting a sleek Invisible Jet, and climbing brick walls like everyone’s favorite neighborhood web-slinger.

Oh, those were the days.

However, what some individuals fail to realize is that there are other superheroes besides the ones produced by comic book powerhouses Marvel and DC. On the contrary, I can list six conquerors off the top of my head that graced my old Zenith television screen every day after elementary school. Need a clue? Their colors can be found in the rainbow … or any Skittles commercial after the year 2000. That’s right, folks. I’m talking about the Power Rangers … the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers to be exact.

What started in August of 1993 on Fox Kids, one of the more popular kids programming blocks of the decade, soon became a television phenomenon, and needless to say, I was undoubtedly addicted. What was it about these rainbow colored adolescent teens that thrilled me so? Was it the gleaming metallic morphers they utilized to transform into their butt-kicking alter egos? Or maybe it was the colossal robots they called on to defeat monsters of gigantic proportions. Perchance it was the tacky Japanese footage from its Super Sentai counterpart spliced with new American footage in order to make the show coherent. Whatever the case, I was hooked like a fish … or Lindsay Lohan at a crack convention. I digress.

You see, the thing about the Power Rangers wasn’t that they had cool weapons … although, hands down, the Pink Ranger’s power bow was downright amazing. It wasn’t that they were hip … although, without a doubt, the Black Ranger’s dance moves rivaled any form of today’s ridiculous pop, lock, and drop it routine. No, the Power Rangers helped teach me the facts of life – fundamental truths and proofs that I didn’t have to glean from four young women at the fictional Eastland Academy.

Every episode of Saban’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers featured a valuable lesson such as the power of teamwork, working hard, studying, maintaining friendships, and influencing people. In fact, I’m willing to bet that I’m a better person just because of those six teenagers with attitude. Well, that and going to Sunday School every week. Yeah, I’m pretty sure that had something to do with it too.

Of course, it was more than the lessons that kept me coming back. When Trini the Yellow Ranger took down the evil Mantis monster by herself in episode 48, Plague of the Mantis, I was floored. When Tommy the Green Ranger first summoned the colossal Dragonzord out of the ocean in Angel Grove’s abandoned warehouse district in episode 21, Green with Evil – Part V, I nearly lost my shitake mushrooms. Jason the Red Ranger oozed testosterone. I mean, he practically shouted all of his damn lines. Billy the Blue Ranger was the epitome of the word genius. I’d get a kick out of Kimberly the Pink Ranger ferociously shouting, “Pterodactyl” to morph into her alter ego, and Zach the Black Ranger had the coolest weapon of all — an axe that could double as a cannon. Wicked awesome! Plus the heavy rock and roll theme song was enough to get me pumped for every episode. All in all, a pretty lethal combination.

While most individuals grew out of the series as they got older, I simply stayed put. Call it a desire to stay young. Call it the beginning of my path to becoming a nerd. I don’t care. All I know is that I was a dedicated fan. When the series began reinventing itself every year with new themes and plots, I chose to tough it out. After all, how hard could it be, right? When they switched to Zeo, I simply ‘zeonized’ my power along with them. When they went Turbo on a brother, I merely gained an interest in automobiles. I traveled with them In Space, watched them fight bug-eyed monsters in the Lost Galaxy, take on lame looking demons in Lightspeed Rescue and race back to the future in Time Force.

It wasn’t until Disney took over in 2002 that the power began to wear off with such lame entries as Jungle Fury, Mystic Force and Operation Overdrive. After Saban required the rights in 2010, I was officially done. I was in my senior year of college and I didn’t have time for rangers any more.  Instead, my mind was centered on anti-nerd things such as women and Star Trek and women and Star Wars. Still, that didn’t stop me from re-watching old-school episodes on YouTube from time to time. Just last month, I re-watched the entire season of Time Force on Netflix while forcing my best friend to join me … much to his chagrin.

It seems I’ll be a nerd forever, and that’s just fine by me. With the newest installment of the series – Power Rangers Samurai – currently airing on Nickelodeon, it seems the rangers will be around forever as well which warms my heart. It’s common knowledge among my friends that it will be a law in my house that every child of mine will have to watch Power Rangers. Heck, I may even replace Sesame Street with it. Okay, perchance that’s taking it a bit too far.

Still, make no doubt it about, the Power Rangers rock, and as far as I’m concerned, they’re downright amazing!

It’s morphin’ time!

Photo Credit: Saban

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Categories: | Clack | CliqueClack Flashback | Features | General | TV Shows |

15 Responses to “Old school Power Rangers, how I miss thee – CliqueClack Flashback”

February 10, 2012 at 6:07 PM

The power lies on their Siiiiiii-e-iiiiiiii-e-iiiii-e-iiiiiiide!!!

I only watched it for a couple of the early years, and the movie. It really got awesome for me when Tommy came on board. I think I lost interest when I moved, and probably didn’t want to be the new kid who still liked Power Rangers.

Did you ever watch any of the knock-offs, like VR Troopers? Or the other one where they also went into a computer to fight people? I think it had the word Cyber in the title.

All those shows, Power Rangers in particular, had amazing toys

February 10, 2012 at 8:42 PM

I love that you know the music! My favorite part of the theme was the ending — Go, go, Power Rangeeerrzz! You mighty, morphin’ Power Rangeerrrzzzz! LOL I didn’t watch VR Troopers. My brother and I tried to watch an episode last month on Netflix and hated it. LOL However, I did watch Big Bad Beetleborgs as a kid! Loved that show! I also enjoyed Masked Rider and Mystic Knights of Tir Nir Nog…or something like that. Who is your favorite ranger? Tommy?

February 13, 2012 at 9:19 AM

I’m pretty sure my brother and I had the vehicles from VR Troopers (they were motorcycles, right?) but the action figure from MMPR and luckily they basically fit together.

February 10, 2012 at 6:50 PM

I had an affection for VR Troopers. I couldn’t take Sarah Brown seriously on Cold Case because I kept thinking of when she was on VR Troopers.

But I still totally have my Power Rangers action figures in a box in my garage somewhere.

February 10, 2012 at 8:43 PM

Megazord sits on my desk at work. LOL

February 10, 2012 at 8:01 PM

Oh, Jaylen, Jaylen. You had my utmost respect, until you admitted your love of the Power Rangers. Can I interest you in the original Power Rangers … Photon?

February 10, 2012 at 8:46 PM

That was both scary and strangely amusing at the same time. LOL I’ve never even heard of this program. It’s clearly before my time. Sorry, An. Power Rangers is 10 times better! LOL I do hope we can still be friends.

February 10, 2012 at 10:00 PM

I won’t lie. I hated Photon, but it was the Power Rangers of the 80s. When PR came out, I was doubly appalled that it’d happen again. I always wondered what new children would get ensnared. I think it’s an age thing, no doubt my niece and nephew will reminisce on the awesomeness of Barney and Elmo. Don’t worry, we can still be friends ;)

February 11, 2012 at 3:12 AM

I grew up on Battle Fever J, which aired in Hawaii without added live-action American footage. I could have sworn it was dubbed into English, but the article said that it was in Japanese with subtitles.

Sadly too old for the many Power Rangers series.

February 11, 2012 at 11:34 AM

When I was a third grade classroom teacher, each year there would be a kindergarten costume parade on Halloween. Every year, with no prompting from me, my well-trained students would spontaneously decide to graph the Power Ranger costumes by color as they paraded through our classroom. Am I just a fabulous teacher, or were there waaaayyy too many Power Rangers in the mid-’90s? You decide! ;-)

February 16, 2012 at 11:29 AM

I think it’s both, Debbie! You’re an awesome teacher, and there was too much of the Power Rangers back in the mid-90’s! Sheesh! I was in first grade when Power Rangers debuted. How I remember the days of pretending to be Megazord while battling fictional putties on the playground. Ah, good times. :-)

February 16, 2012 at 5:49 PM

Definitely a blast from the past, and a much needed flash back of my wonderful childhood Saturday morning cartoon sessions! I can’t say that I stayed loyal to the Power Rangers as long as you have, however they will always have a special place in my heart! :D

February 16, 2012 at 6:18 PM

Paul, I think the majority of us left the Rangers behind when they switched to Turbo. LOL Everyone has fond memories of the first season. As crappy as it was, it was fantastic!! I’m glad I was able to take you on a trip down memory lane. Thanks for commenting!

March 18, 2012 at 5:17 PM

Finally someone understands me! I’m still watching Time Force on netflix too!

March 18, 2012 at 10:27 PM

Edward, if you’re watching Time Force then it’s obvious that you recognize quality! LOL It warms my heart to know that someone out there can relate!