Hold on… just… sorry guys, give me a second…
Ok. I’m ok. I threw up in my mouth a little, but it’s cool. I’m cool.
No I’m not, this is not cool.
Even though I’m a certified film snob, I try not to automatically hate on remakes of old properties. I actually liked the latest Godzilla, and I’m unapologetically optimistic for the new Starship Troopers (please be more like the book).
But so far every media release relating to the new Power Rangers movie has been complete and total cringe-inducing, keyboard-slamming, hate-fire fuel.
First there was the cast photo.
Look at these guys. Are these the faces of teenagers you would trust to save the nerd getting bullied at school? Or to teach little kids how to recycle? Or to fight putties when they suddenly appear at Angel Grove Park? They look like they’re about to climb down from that rock and punch all of us in the face.
Then there was strike two — Rita Repulsa. I love Elizabeth Banks. She’s hilarious. But…
Help me out here, Rita…
And now there’s this… this… what is this? It looks like Zordon contracted the rangers’ suits out to Tony Stark. The girls even have boob armor. Boob armor!
The producers have been saying that the movie is going to be about a team of “misfits”. But that was never the point. Sure, sometimes they were misfits, especially the red ranger in later seasons. But it was always more than that. The seasons of Power Rangers that had the most misfits were always the more obnoxious and frustrating ones. The better seasons deal with a wide variety of issues and conflicts, not just angst and alienation. And personally I think it’s kind of an insult to the audience and teenagers in general — NOT ALL TEENAGERS ARE ALIENATED AND ANGRY.
I myself was a pretty angsty kid, but I didn’t want to watch other angsty kids on TV. I wanted something beyond that.
And besides, the target audience for Power Rangers was always… wait for it… wait for iiiiitttttt — little kids. The rangers were not peers or analogs for their audience, they were role models. Something for them to aspire to. A group of teenagers who cared about others and worked hard to make life better. It gave kids hope. Especially kids who lived in situations where they otherwise didn’t have a happy life. Watching Power Rangers made them feel like one day they would be able to be a good person and do something good. Even if they couldn’t beat up Goldar, they could still plant a tree in the park and stand up for the kid getting bullied.
So no, I’m not buying this vision of the Rangers. I get that they’re “trying to appeal to a more mature audience,” but you have to know who that audience is, and I don’t think they have a clue.