Sunday, October 22, 2017

Was Kendrix' Death Done in Poor Taste?

Hello, hello.

So earlier today I was on Instagram and saw of clip of when Kendrix died and became Casper the Friendly Ghost on Lost Galaxy.  And when I saw it, I had a thought that I never had before: Was killing Kendrix the right thing to do?

Now from a writing standpoint, killing Kendrix was brilliant.  Bringing in Karone as her replacement was brilliant (and that episode is my favorite episode in ALL of Power Rangers).  However, once you start thinking about the reason the writers killed Kendrix off in the first place, it gets weird.  Kendrix' actor, Valerie Vernon was diagnosed with cancer at that time and had to leave the show for health purposes.  Thankfully, she was able to kick cancer's ass, but she still had to leave the show.

So imagine being told that you have cancer.  Then telling your bosses that you have cancer and cannot continue working.  And then your bosses tell you they are going to kill you off on the show to explain why your character will be gone.  Now maybe the director/writers told Valerie that they were always going to bring her back at the end, I don't know.  But they still had this woman act out dying on the show and being a ghost.

She had cancer at the time guys.  Most likely, she was already thinking about her mortality and then you make her die and play a ghost.  If I were an actor diagnosed with cancer, I could not see myself acting out anything that had to do with my own death.  I'm diagnosed with cancer, I don't want to die, and now I'm being forced to pretend I'm dying on screen?  Good Lord...

Do you think that the writers were being insensitive to Valerie by killing off her character?  Prior to that moment, NO Power Ranger had ever died on the show.  There are plenty of ways they could have written the character of Kendrix off the show without resorting to death.  But the writers chose to have the Grim Reaper visit the pink ranger anyway.

I don't know how Valerie Vernon felt about it, and I certainly do not speak for her.  I have never seen any interviews with her, so I don't know if she's discussed this topic before.  This is just a thought that came in my head today that I never thought about before.

Well, whether it was insensitive or not, Kendrix' death made for some good television and the actor pulled through in the end, so... yay?

Sunday, January 8, 2017

How Dino Super Charge Could Have Been Better (For Me)

This was original going to be a video, but I have been sick for almost a week now and my Spring Semester will begin tomorrow; thus, I no longer have time for recording and editing.

Anywho, let's talk about Dino Super Charge.  DSC is a season that should have been great. A season that I should have loved, but because of silly decision after silly decision from the show's writers, I ended up being incredibly disappointed with it.  Womp womp.

So this post is going to be me listing out what I would have preferred Dino Super Charge to have done with its storyline and characters.  Ok?  Cool.  Let's begin.

1.  Heckyl Never Losing His Badassery

Heckyl had so much potential.  He could have been one of the greatest Power Ranger villains.  The first three episodes of DSC showed how dangerous and competent he could be.  However, the moment that the rangers found out that Heckyl was evil, his character went downhill from there.  He soon became a run-of-the-mill PR villain and then the writers decided that Heckyl wasn't really evil. Oh no, he was just being influenced by Snide's evil. Ugh!

I would have preferred for the show to keep Heckyl's ruse going a little longer.  And when the rangers do find out that Heckyl is a dastardly fiend, the rangers end up suffering a loss.

Example: the rangers discover that Heckyl is evil but it doesn't matter because Heckyl has planted bombs in the rangers' base, and our colorful teenagers could not stop Heckyl from detonating their strategic command center.

That would be cool.  Heckyl destroying the ranger base in an episode that is not the finale.  Miss Morgan and the core six rangers worry about what to do next, but then they remember that the Graphite Ranger is a prince and could finance a brand spankin' new command center that is much better than a cave.  Would have loved for this to have happened.  Heckyl would come off as a boss and the prince would actually have something to do. Win, win!

Also, I would change Heckyl's backstory as well.  I want Heckyl to be evil because he is evil.  None of this Snide-rubbing-off-on-him crap.  I also would have liked for Heckyl and Snide to have been partners in crime 65 million years ago.  It could have been that back in the day, Heckyl and Snide were after the Dark Energem; but because they didn't know how to use its power, the dark energem cursed them into one body.  If we must have Heckyl turn good, then have his turn be due to Miss Morgan.  Heckyl stated a few times that he found Miss Morgan to be attractive.  The writers should have had Heckyl develop feelings for our favorite purple lady while he was pretending to be good and working at the dino museum.  I could have gotten behind his love (or lust) for Miss Morgan turning him good.  I'm still surprised that the writers DIDN'T do this.

2.  Eleven Rangers Instead of Ten

Ok, normally I only prefer even numbers.  But when you have an extra ranger suit that you could use, use it!  Especially when you introduce another energem into the story.

So let me get this straight.  The 10 "good" energems can all turn people into power rangers, but the "dark" energem can't?  That's so lame.  Heckyl clearly should have became a power ranger after he and Snide were separated.  He could have been an evil ranger for a bit and then turned good.  OR, he could have bonded to the dark energem in the finale and fought as a good ranger then.  I don't care how you use the extra ranger, just use it.  Never can have enough Power Brats!

3.  No Time Travel Shenanigans!

This shit has to go.  It made no fucking sense and ruined the DSC finale.  You want a conclusion for the dark energem, here is what you do.  Have the rangers use the power of their 10 good energems to "purify" the dark energem so that it becomes good as well.  In purifying the dark energem, the evil energy that once resided within it leaves and bonds to the most evil person in the galaxy: Sledge!  The evil energy makes Sledge more powerful than evah!!

To face Super Evil Sledge, the rangers have Heckyl bond to the formerly dark energem and all 11 rangers defeat Sledge and his minions in a glorious battle.

Eh, it's a simple plot, but it's a hell of a lot better than what we got...

4.  Keeper's Backstory Explained

I cannot believe that keeper didn't get an episode to explain how he and Miss Morgan met.  This is something I was so sure would be told to us.  I NEVER thought the show would tell us how the zords came to be, but we actually got an explanation for that.  An explanation I actually liked too.

But back to Keeper.  The show could have just told us that Keeper started living with Miss Morgan's ancestors thousands of years ago and has since become a member of the family that just won't die.  I would have accepted that.  But we didn't get anything.  No explanation for how he became the "keeper" of the energems.  No explanation for why it took him 65 million years to find the energems on Earth (seriously, he's just as incompetent as Fury).  We got nothing.

5.  Tyler's Daddy Not Being a Deadbeat

The conclusion to this story arc was the first thing that made me realized that DSC wasn't gonna be shit.  I hated the explanation for why Tyler's dad was missing for 10 years.  So James bonded to the aqua energem 10 years ago and was immediately stalked and harassed by Fury.  Because Fury can "smell the energems."  Bull.  Anyway, James said that because Fury kept showing up wherever he was, he abandoned his son because he didn't want to put Tyler's life in danger.

Now on the surface, Jame's rationale is sound.  But when you start to examine it, the logic falls apart.  First, this is the Power Ranger universe.  If you were having an issue with a monster, maybe you should have sought out the help of a ranger team James!  Admittedly there weren't many active ranger teams in 2005, but the Mystic Force and Overdrive rangers popped up a year or two after that.  Ask for help fool!

After the time travel nonsense that occurred in the DSC finale, I'm not so sure that this season even exists in the main PR universe.  But even if it doesn't and the Dino Charge rangers are the only rangers, this is still stupid.  Fury was shown to be one of the dumbest villains I had ever seen.  Fury was not chasing you for 10 years straight.  He. Was. Not.  Fury lost the gold energem even though the thing was right next to him, and he still couldn't find it even though it had become one of the most important symbols to the Kingdom of Zandar.

Nowhere in season one of Dino Charge did we see Fury chasing after James or telling Sledge that James has an energem and that they should all find and capture him.  None of that shit happened.  What happened is that Fury gave up on James a long time ago, and James used Fury as an excuse to abandon his duties as a parent to live with his gay lover.

Now, this is how I would have told this story.  James finds and bonds to the aqua energem.  Fury shows up.  James and Fury fight on top of a cliff, a big explosion happens, and when the smoke clears, James is gone and Fury is by himself, pissed.

The explosion knocked James off the cliff and into the water below.  He washed up ashore unconscious and unmorphed and was cared for by a nice lady.  When James came to, he had no memory of who he was other than his name.  He began to build a new life for himself with the nice lady and her infant son.  10 years later, the rangers eventually find James and James regains his memory.  James and Tyler are father and son again, and Tyler also gains new family members.

Again, this is a simple plot.  But it is a hell of a lot better than what we got...

6.  Cut (Some of) the Filler

Finally, get rid of all that damn filler.  My goodness!  That "Besties 4Eva" episode did not need to exist.  Same for that episode with the magic makeup.

The episode "Catching Some Rays" can stay though, ONLY because of Sir Ivan.  Sir Ivan was brilliant in that episode.  The part where he fought Fury while under the "fun spell" was one of best things the Saban Brands Era has given us.  Power Rangers was blessed to have Davi Santos.

Now to be fair, I don't want all the filler to go.  Some of it was fun (like Home Run Koda).  But DSC took filler way too far.  There was so much story opportunity that was wasted because of filler.

Also, the writers wrote these weird episodes that felt like they took a script for a story driven ep and a script for a filler ep and combined the two to create some unholy union.  "Oh no, we need to save the silver ranger.  But first, we gotta win this singing contest!"  What?  Either the episode is going to be about one thing or the other.  Don't pick both.  It just makes things weird.

Sidenote, there was an episode where Lord Arcanon gained the ability to summon and control the rangers' zords... and after that episode, that ability is never brought up again.  So the rangers know that the villains can control their zords, but never do anything about it.  And the villains never try to control them again. WHAT?  If someone reads this post, please tell me I just missed the part where Miss Morgan explains how she built some type of firewall to keep the villains from hacking their zords again.

So there it is.  If the story had been tweaked differently, I would have enjoyed DSC more.  Oh well.  It's over.  On to the next season!