Rating: 3.5/5 – It’s Morphin’ Time Once Again!
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Dallas Fitzgerald
The Power Rangers franchise (and its Japanese forebear, Super Sentai) is very near to my heart. It was with great excitement that I awaited BOOM! Studios’ Power Rangers #0. With great looking promos I was hoping BOOM! could work similar magic to IDW’s excellent Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles relaunch. After reading the issue, I hold onto my cautious hope and look forward to seeing where this series takes us in upcoming issues. The plot of this debut issue is dedicated to fan-favorite character Tommy and I can see that there’s a winning formula here for fans of the masked crime-fighting teens, new and old. Now that formula needs to be carried out.
This zero issue is broken up into 3 short stories and the first thing that stood out to me was how wonderful the art was in each of the three. The art in each was distinctive and suitable for the characters and tone portrayed. In the main offering, Hendry Prasetya’s pencils are excellent. His portrayal of the iconic suits, giant robots, and kaiju (giant monsters) is both accurate and loving, with attention to detail and posing sure to make any long-time MMPR fan drool. That said, I’m not a fan of Prasetya’s faces. The contrast between the hyper-detailed helmets and the more simple faces stuck out to me over and over again, but I wouldn’t trade the rest of the package for different faces if I had the choice. Matt Herm’s colors bring the visual package together with finesse, and this lifetime Mecha fan is willing to say that the colors and shading on the Megazord in this book are some of the best I’ve seen in Western comics. One large shot of the Megazord in particular brought to mind the fantastic color work by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko in Gundam: The Origin and left me admiring the page for some time.
In the second story, The Ongoing Adventures of Bulk & Skull, Corin Howell and Jeremy Lawson team up to present the Power Rangers bumbling frenemies in a way that just seemed perfect for the characters. The lovable comic relief duo is portrayed in a cartoony style perfect for high school hijinks, and I’m really looking forward to more of this in the future. Finally, in the third story, What Time Is It?!, Daniel Bayliss shows off what just may be my favorite interpretation of the Power Rangers EVER. The dreamy, colorful landscapes immediately (and pleasantly!) brought to mind Michael del Mundo’s recent work on Weirdworld. The Megazord is once again the star of the show, and I really hope to see more Bayliss art in this series.
The writing, across the board, left a little more to be desired. I wasn’t necessarily surprised at the dialogue, but I will say I was disappointed. This book seems like a great opportunity to make a Power Rangers comic with real staying power (no pun intended), but I think we’ll need to stray farther than the serial ‘after-school TV’ route as far as story and plot are concerned to really break that ground. I don’t want to give the idea that I didn’t like what I read at all, but I see potential for the writing to really take off, even though I felt it seemed weak in this issue. Perhaps it’s just too early to tell. This is definitely a series I’ll be keeping my eye on.
If you are a Power Rangers superfan that is on the fence about this title, buy this book. If you have nostalgic memories of this series and want to relive them, buy this book. If you’re looking for something akin to IDW’s TMNT that takes the franchise in bold new directions while skirting the familiar, you probably want to wait for a few more issues to come out to avoid disappointment. I would’ve said the same thing about IDW’s TMNT early in the run, though, so take it with a grain of salt. I know I am. I feel like it could score higher for a diehard fan, but I’m trying to step back and give my honest opinion of the writing not colored by my love for the franchise and also to let new reader know what to expect. With fantastic art and acceptable writing, I can confidently recommend this book to anyone interested.
Reviewed by: Dallas Fitzgerald
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