Tag Archives: Avatar The Last Airbender

It’s morphin’ time: a need for change in the franchise?

mmpr blue ranger
Female Blue Ranger? Preposterous!

Back when I was a little Chin, there was one TV show that ruled them all: Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Damn, did I love that show back then. Over here in Europe, it used to air every Saturday morning, and you could bet your action figure collection I would sit in front of the telly then and witness the epic fight between good and evil. Everything about Power Rangers just spoke to me: the over-the-top fight scenes, the gigantic robots and monsters and the inspiring teamwork of the Rangers. Back then, I didn’t want to be a firefighter or astronaut; I wanted to be a Power Ranger.

Eventually, I grew up though and discovered how cheesy and corny most of the show was. The acting was just bland (even for a kid’s show), the plots overused and the effects were…disappointing. However, no matter my age, something still fascinates me about this recycling of Japanese stock footage. When I subscribed to Netflix yesterday (yes, we finally have that in these parts of the Old World), I discovered that service offers the entire show. Not just the original seasons, but everything up to Samurai. Am I tempted to marathon those? Well, does the Red Ranger like to shout “It’s morphin’ time“?

Anyway, it’s hard to pinpoint what it actually is that still intrigues me. There’s something underneath those layers of cheesiness and bad acting that gives the show its appeal. What if someone was to cut away those cheap elements, and actually invest into creating a new, yet true-to-the-original show? What if someone took some time to write some decent characters and plot, giving the show some depth while keeping it accessible for children?

Shows like Avatar: The Last Airbender proof that it is possible to create children entertainment that takes its viewers seriously, while also being intriguing enough to attract an older audience. Even before that, the comic industry has evolved from its cheesy beginnings to some really deep and challenging graphic novels. Where’s that evolution in the Power Rangers franchise? Is it because the producers want to play it safe, or am I truly the only one who would like some more depth with his Zord fights?

Fortunately, I’m not. The fan production MMPR is on its way, which will provide a darker re-interpretation of what it means to be a Power Ranger. Though I think that it will visually stray too far from the original, it seems to give some more depth to the universe. And hell, I’m always game when it comes to a return of Lord Zed!

So, fellow Rangers out there, what do you think? Would the world be ready for a more challenging, dramatic Power Rangers story, or should the Rangers stick to their screaming, arms-waving combat scenes? Shout out in the comments!

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The Legend of Korra – Book Two: Spirits Trailer

Korra

Fans of Avatar: The Last Airbender were in for a pretty awesome treat as the Legend of Korra panel at San Diego Comic-Con revealed some awesome news for book two. No specific release date was given, however Book Two: Spirits will premiere some time in September. After seeing the trailer, I’m even more excited to delve deeper into the Avatar universe, as well as Korra’s own personal occurrences. And while I’m jealous that Comic-Con attendees got to see the first episode of Book Two, I’m relieved and hyped by the reactions.

It should definitely be a good season.

I’m mainly excited about Spirits simply for the fact that Korra isn’t a very spiritual person. It was easy to see Aang thrive and learn inside of the spirit world just for the fact that he was raised by monks, but Korra is a bit of a wild card and it’s nice to see an Avatar that doesn’t necessarily contain that “old” wisdom. How she reacts to the presence of spirits should be interesting, and I’m hoping that this season will focus on Korra finding her own spiritual way.

I have no doubt that book two will introduce some new qualities (and characters) inside of the Avatar mythos. The thing I enjoy the most about this show is the fact that the universe has so much potential. It’s rare to see such depth inside of a kid’s show, but Avatar truly introduces something more, and I look forward to exploring it. I haven’t watched all of book one yet, but to the ones who have, what do you think of Korra’s place inside of the Avatar universe, and is there anything specific you’re looking forward to seeing in book two?