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Official Article

Flipped Out for Power Rangers!

By: MissM

While perusing one of my favorite blogs on the internet, Erik the Illustrator, I learned that Power Rangers is going into its 20th Anniversary Season on television and my friend Erik has been doing a fabulous write up about some costume commentary regarding the Rangers. This of course got me thinking about my own memories and experiences with the Power Rangers, particularly that first run on Fox Kids. (The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.) Power Rangers was a big deal, it felt like a big deal before the first episode even aired. That is how big of a deal Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was, and still is.

 

I recall the teaser commercial promoting the show and toy line and I was simply entranced. I was in the sixth grade and the excitement flowing through my veins was too much. Too much in fact because I felt like I was the only kid in my class that was excited. My other peers were far more interested in other non-dorky pursuits, so I felt like the odd one out.

 

Nothing stopped me from collecting and enjoying the show though. Power Rangers was actually one of the first pop culture experiences that bonded my brother and me. He was younger and in the perfect age demographic to really enjoy Power Rangers. That whole time frame was an exciting time. We enjoyed the experience in watching shows together. I also felt like he was on the right track to becoming an avid toy collector like me. (Spoiler alert: he did not become an avid toy collector. But that’s ok.)

 

Anyways, with all this Power Ranger talk I thought it would be fun to look at some of the Power Ranger toys that I managed to collect as a kid. While my collection was not nearly as great as my brother's, I was able to get a few things here and there! Ready to flip into a retro daze? Let’s go-go!

 

This Power Ranger figure was part of a “Real Morphin” action figure line or lovingly referred to as Flip Head Power Rangers that came out in 1994. When they first came out they were incredibly rare and hard to find. I could never find them in stores, only at specialty shops or sales where the prices were ridiculous. Of course eventually they were found for super cheap at Kay-Bee Toys, and I managed to get a few of my faves. Like Billy, the Blue Ranger. I loved that he was nerdy and goofy. While I had a crush on Jason for his determined leadership, and those eyes, I always felt that Billy would be the kind of guy that would go for a dorkette like me.

 

Anyways, with just a button press on the belt buckle, a slim chest and back piece opened up switching the ‘real’ face into the full Ranger look. I loved this concept because I wanted figures of the Rangers in their human form too. Of course the overall look of this figure is bulky as all get out. Articulation was clunky from day one, but this line was so much fun. Pegs were sculpted into the hands to hold onto their weapons which are not included in this article because I have lost them.

 

Trini is next. I think one of the main reasons I got into Power Rangers was not so much for the dreamy guys, but because there were two strong female characters that were part of the cast. Typically shows along these lines would relegate one female into the rotation of butt kicking co-stars, but Power Rangers gave girls two role models to look up to.

 

These figures had impressive articulation for 1994. Arms opened outward and around while the knees could bend. Sculpting-wise the male figures had a better aesthetic than the female figures. It wasn’t until later on in future Power Ranger lines that the female characters would actually look female.

 

Oh the dangerous and dashing Green Ranger! Tommy was a big deal when he came onto the scene. There was so much mystery about what the color of the new Ranger would be. Had I known the course of the show in Japan I would have obviously known what the color would be, but I was a pre-teen! Without any Internet connection! I was sort of hoping that the new Ranger would have been purple or something. Green is what we got though.

 

And how great was that? I loved the Green Ranger. Just when I thought the show was set on a specific course, I was given a big jolt with the Green Ranger. It was the perfect plot twist that allowed the toy line to morph into an even longer and beloved line. Also, this figure is missing his golden chest plate piece. (During my move I recently stumbled upon all of these and some other fun Power Ranger items that will be making a future appearance in celebration of the Mighty Morphin toy line.)

 

The last figure I had was of course my favorite: the Pink Ranger! While I loved Trini, nothing can beat the color pink for me. Pink is my favorite color and the Pink Ranger was simply the coolest. I loved the idea that a show could put a character into the group in the color pink and it would not be something “icky.” It was 1994. Pink was still one of those colors that were leery for some people, especially for a toy line that was marketed in the boy aisle.

 

However, that was one of the great things about Power Rangers. It was one of those series and toy lines that transcended the gendered aisles in the toy store. Bandai found ways to market this line to both boys and girls and it was something that created a blur with what was “expected” of kids to collect and enjoy. Power Rangers created a nice movement that not only has given generations some fun television, but also some amazing collectibles.

 

This last photo just shows how much I have been missing from this particular line. I believe my brother had the Red and Black Ranger from the original run. There were a decent number of releases from this Flip Head style that lasted for a decent amount of time. Including a version of the Rangers with vac metal suits! That’s about it though folks. Were you a fan of the Power Rangers? Do you remember the big deal created by this pop culture sensation? Let me know, and stick around Retro-Daze. There are always fun things right around the corner.        

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DoctorRyan Posted on May 18, 2014 at 03:33 AM

I love the original Power Rangers. I can still remember the names and personality's of all the original actors. I've seen episodes from later series like Time Force, Mystic Force, SPD. And for the life of me I can't tell you who was in those episodes.

MissM Posted on Mar 06, 2014 at 05:12 AM

thecrow- Yes! I forgot about that with the Green Ranger. I think after all the circus of the Green Ranger coming out I kinda stopped watching as much as I would have liked.

Benjanime- I had no idea that PR was the reason Sonic was cancelled. I really loved that show a lot. It was such a good show. I really miss good Sonic shows and toy lines. The stuff they have now feels like it is just the same Sonic figure over and over.

Pikachulover- Kimberly was my favorite too! I forgot that the metallic ones did come from the movie. That was such a big deal too. My brother was so excited for the movie.

Vaporman- Ya know, the Japanese invasion that followed PR was really something that did not capture my attention either. I liked PR and I liked Sailor Moon, but I didn't even really collect much SM. While I was still collecting and things like that, I was not invested in the Pokemon stuff and everything that followed.

And these figures do scream mid 90's! I hate that the female bodies were the same as the males. It really does look really off. lol

Mr Magic Posted on Feb 22, 2014 at 02:35 PM

I remember having the Green, Red and White Ranger action figures. When I think about the Green Ranger, I think about how he was evil AND a giant! What a scary sight that was!

Benjanime Posted on Feb 21, 2014 at 09:08 PM

mighty morphin power rangers was sort of hit and miss with me. i was more of the cartoon type back in the day, but i still liked how they had mechs that connected together.

years later, i found out that the show is the reason why sonic satam got cancelled. why they couldn't wait until the show actually ended, i'll never understand

pikachulover Posted on Feb 21, 2014 at 07:39 PM

I was totally obsessed with the Power Rangers when I was like 10, and back then according to my peers I was "too old" to like them. I have one of those flipping head figures of the Pink Ranger. I begged my parents to buy it for me when I saw it at the Sav-on. I even took the figure to the beach.
The figures that were metallic were the ones from the 1st movie.
I've been thinning out my MMPR collection, and keeping the stuff I really wanted to save.
After Kimberly left in season 3 I lost interest because she was favorite character. Then I moved on to Sailor Moon.

Vaporman87 Posted on Feb 21, 2014 at 02:50 PM

I was never a Power Rangers fan. I think, mainly, because the whole Japanese invasion (with Pokemon, Power Rangers, etc.) came after I was already off and into college.

That being said, I respect the success of this show. Few shows are able to continue capturing the attention of new generations of kids, but this is one of them. The show has cemented it's place among the the greats... He-Man, G.I. Joe, Transformers, etc.

Regarding the figures, these just scream mid-90's. Everything about them reminds me of lines like those created by Toy Biz and Trendmasters. I find it hilarious that the company couldn't be bothered to give the female characters female bodies. It looks... weird. lol

Thanks for this Miss M!

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