web analytics
Apr 132016
 

As you might recall, the classic Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers contained Japanese footage within the episodes. But have you ever wondered exactly where that footage came from? It’s from a Sentai series called Super Sentai Zyuranger(1992-1993).

These rangers originally coexisted with the dinosaurs 170 million years ago. Each one was from a different tribe and put in suspended animation until they were awakened to defend Earth. Best part is that there is no identity secrecy. Everyone knows who the Zyurangers are and they befriend the many citizens, especially the kids. They are Geki (Yuta Mochizuki) as the Red Ranger, Goushi (Seiju Umon) as the Black Ranger, Dan (Hideki Fujiwara) as the Blue Ranger, Boi (Takumi Hashimoto) as the Yellow Ranger, and Mei (Reiko Chiba) as the Pink Ranger.

Later on, a sixth Zyuranger joins the team, Burai (Hisashi Sakai) as the Green Ranger. Like the Green Ranger on Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, he’s not featured as frequently but for a completely different reason altogether.

The rangers also have zords, but they are featured as the Guardian Beasts and they actually talk. When the five Guardian Beasts combine they become Daizyuzin and Burai’s Guardian Beast is called Dragon Caesar. As interesting as that sounds, I still prefer to call them Megazord and Dragonzord. The same goes for King Brachion as Titanus the Ultrazord.

Instead of Zordon and Alpha 5, the Zyurangers’ wise mentor is a wizard named Barza (Jun Tatara) and he lives in an underground temple instead of a command center.

The villains have the same exact look to the ones on Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. However, they are very different in comparison. Not just their names, but their personalities too. Let’s start with the leader who is the witch Bandora (Machiko Soga). If you thought Rita Repulsa was evil, Bandora is much worse. She hates children and often targets them as a way to conquer Earth, sometimes in a brutal manner. Now that’s just low. On the bright side, she is funny when defeated much like Rita.

Bandora’s group also consists of strong warriors Grifforzar and Lamy (Ami Kawai) who are actually husband and wife. That was certainly a surprise since Goldar and Scorpina were never a couple.

And let’s not forget the comedic Topat (Baboo) and Bookback (Squatt) who can take human form. As well as Pleprechaun (Finster) the unusual artist, who created the Golems (Putty Patrollers) and the various Dora Monsters.

Speaking of which, the names are very different but the monster is easy to recognize like Dora Goblin (Gnarly Gnome), Dora Sphinx (King Sphinx), Dora Ninja (Dark Warrior), Dora Cockatrice (Chunky Chicken), Dora Laygor (Madam Woe), and so on and so forth. Personally I prefer to identify the monsters by their names on Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers.

I’ll tell you, I really enjoyed this Sentai series. If you think it’s like Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, it isn’t. Super Sentai Zyuranger is edgier and definitely not a kid show. It sure is nice to compare the two shows, especially if you’re a Power Rangers fan.

One last note: There are other Super Sentai shows that follow a similar premise. One I would also recommend is Gosei Sentai Dairanger, which contains footage of the Thunderzords, the White Ranger, and monsters from season two of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers.

Aug 082011
 

Anime Festival Orlando returns for another great year. Once again most of the celebrity guests are stars from the Power Rangers franchise, which makes it even more exciting.

Some of the Power Rangers stars I got to meet include Blake Foster, who was Justin the Blue Turbo Ranger, and Dan Southworth, who was Eric the Quantum Ranger.

Then I met Johnny Yong Bosch, who was one of the original classics, Adam the Black Ranger. He wasn’t very talkative, but came up with a clever idea for the photo. It was to look as if we were morphing.

It's morphin time

 The same Power Rangers magazine I took to Anime Festival Orlando last year now has another autograph.

Later, I met Wendee Lee who is best known as the voice of Faye Valentine from Cowboy Bebop.

I remember her best as the voice of Scorpina from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Wendee had an interesting story about why Scorpina didn’t last on the series. Originally, Scorpina was a fan favorite and the studio wanted to make her a bigger character. After running out of Scorpina footage used in season one, they tried to look for the original Japanese actress (Ami Kawai) to shoot more scenes. Unfortunately, she could not be found.

There was an attempt to bring Scorpina back during season two, but another actress (Sabrina Lu) played her. It must not have worked out because Scorpina disappeared completely after the one episode, even though the rangers didn’t destroy her.

 

Anime Festival Orlando 2011 also had a great amount of Cosplay, which included this group of Sailor Scouts from Sailor Moon and Kuma from Afro Samurai.

This was only part of what this great convention had to offer. Check my blog real soon about some of the other amazing events.