Review: Nothing Good Is Locked Up That Tight In ‘Power Rangers: Drakkon New Dawn #1’

by James Ferguson

Lord Drakkon is dead (sort of) and his iron grip on his home dimension has finally been loosened. The Ranger Slayer has taken his throne, trying to pick up the pieces of the shattered empire. She has her hands full with armies that were once enemies learning how to work together, making the people trust her, and culling through Drakkon’s secrets including a mysterious prison. Will this land finally find peace? Or will it descend into chaos?

When the Ranger Slayer one-shot came out recently, I said I hoped to see more from this world and then BOOM! Studios delivered this comic. Power Rangers: Drakkon New Dawn is a three-issue mini-series looking at what’s left of this world that a twisted, evil version of Tommy Oliver once ruled over. It is rife with potential and writer Anthony Burch wastes no time digging into it. This is like an Elseworlds story set in the Power Rangers universe and I am here for it.
We only got to see bits and pieces of this world when it was first revealed so Burch spends some time digging deeper and exploring it. There’s a good amount of political intrigue that moves at a brisk pace. You get an immediate sense of the tension between the rival factions and the level of stress going through the Slayer’s mind as she struggles with this leadership role that’s been thrust upon her.

Kimberly is on a path of redemption too so she feels unworthy of this title. This makes for some great character moments. Letterer Ed Dukeshire reveals her internal narration in light pink caption boxes that contrast with the stark nature of her actions and this world. Meanwhile, artist Simone Ragazzoni showcases these well with the Slayer both in and out of costume. My favorite moment comes when she discovers someone locked deep in the prison. There’s a look of terror mixed with wonder and a pinch of hope.
Some of Ragazzoni’s characters are a little too fluid for my tastes, like they lack proper form. Picture someone made of clay that gets squished somewhere along the way. This is mostly true for the folks not in a Ranger costume. It stands out as the Power Rangers comics tend to have very sharp artwork with angular features.

There’s an overall dreary tone for Power Rangers: Drakkon New Dawn, like there’s a dark cloud hanging over this world. That’s rather fitting considering the tyranny these people have had to deal with for so long. Colorist Raul Angulo weaves in occasional glimmers of hope with brighter lights, like maybe they’re turning the corner and a…well…new dawn is coming.
Where the overall Mighty Morphin Power Rangers comics play in a rough approximation of the world established in the TV show from over two decades ago, something like Drakkon New Dawn charts a new course. It’s a bold one, playing with a frightening alternate world full of possibility. I’m excited at what else is in store for us with this series and you should be too.
Power Rangers: Drakkon New Dawn #1 from BOOM! Studios is currently available at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle.

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