Advance Review: Go Go Power Rangers Takes The Franchise To The Next Level

by James Ferguson

After breaking free of her moon prison, Rita Repulsa’s forces were fought back by the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Now she is scheming with her henchmen to devise the secret identities of her new foes. Meanwhile, the Rangers struggle with balancing their day-to-day lives with their new responsibilities as super heroes which is very trying on their personal relationships.

Go Go Power Rangers from Boom! Studios continues to develop the characters behind the flashy costumes and giant robots. We learn more about their past and what makes them who they are. This issue features a flashback to Billy’s youth, showing how he’s been picked on for years. Becoming a Power Ranger has to be a dream come true for him, but it doesn’t always feel that way. He’s still bullied at school and he can’t do anything about it without raising suspicions or using his powers for the wrong reasons.

Although the original TV show aired twenty plus years ago, writer Ryan Parrott seamlessly brings the Rangers into the present. The characters address what it would be like to suddenly have these powers in the age of social media and mobile phones. Part of these new responsibilities entails resisting the urge to tweet about how awesome their lives are now. In a world focused on “likes” and followers, that has to be tough.

Becoming Power Rangers has united Jason, Billy, Trini, Zack, and Kimberly, but it has also created an impenetrable bubble around them. This is a secret they cannot share with anyone, even their closest friends and family. I’ve rallied against this concept of secret identities in other reviews. Go Go Power Rangers #3 shows the dangers of not sharing this information with loved ones when a monster attacks while the team is volunteering at a public event. There is no good reason why any of them would run towards the danger that wouldn’t send up a ton of red flags.

Artist Dan Mora strikes a great balance between these close, personal scenes and those of all-out-action. When a monster and a group of putties attack, the Rangers are quick to answer. The putties were always pretty lame in the TV show. Here they’re like monstrous versions of Spider-Man, leaping at the Rangers with razor sharp claws.

The monster is one of the scariest yet, towering over the humans like some sort of deformed Egyptian god. It’s practically covered in spikes and armor with long, tendril like arms that whip and swirl around it. It’s often cast in darkness, with only its glowing red eyes shining through. Colorist Raul Angulo uses the shadow well to heighten the tension of the scene.

Mora adds a welcome effect to some scenes with the Rangers in costume. There are several panels where you can see a bit of their eyes and face through the pitch black visor of their helmet. Traditionally, the Rangers are rather emotionless in costume because you can’t see their faces at all. This is a nice touch that adds some humanity to their otherwise stoic expressions while in the field.

Go Go Power Rangers is a modern take on the franchise that positions it more as a CW drama than a cheesy kids show. The characters feel natural and grapple with real world problems that anyone their age would be going through. It becomes more personal and provides a closer connection. It makes me appreciate the characters even more.

Go Go Power Rangers #3 will be available at local comics shops and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle on Wednesday, September 20th.