All Eighteen Previous Series of Power Rangers Ranked From Worst to Best
The Power Ranger fandom was hit earlier this year with the highly anticipated (and also, highly expensive) Power Rangers Legacy: The First 20 Seasons collection and if you are lucky enough to be able to get one of these bad boys, you will know how awesome they are. I did a review of mine, but that will be a different post for another time. As you may know, Power Rangers is currently in its 21st season, Power Rangers: Super Megaforce, a season in which the Power Rangers can use their morphers and legendary keys to transform into any previous Power Ranger. The series is fun and it's pure nostalgia factor. So, while we wait for Super Megaforce to air new episodes, I thought it might be fun to rank the Power Rangers seasons from worst to best in my newest countdown article for Moviepilot in celebration of the just-announced Lionsgate Power Rangers movie. Keep in mind that people's opinion differ and this is just my opinion, but I would love to hear your opinions in the comments. So let's get right into it, shall we?
18. Power Rangers: Lightspeed Rescue
It's pretty safe to say that not only is this my least favorite season, but I pretty much dislike everything about it. The instrumental sections of the theme song sounds like the entrance theme for an incredibly cheesy patriotic wrestler. The lyrics themselves are repetitive, but the poor singer sings them with such passion and conviction, it almost fools you into thinking its kinda catchy. As for the theme of the series, it seems like a half-hearted attempt to turn a Japanese series into something almost patriotic and all-American. The red ranger in this series seems to be the most unlikable red ranger in the entire series. He comes off as a giant tool and seems to always refer to himself in the third person by his full name: Carter Grayson, Lightspeed Rescue. Also, the uniforms are hideous, looking like those multi-colored pinwheels you see in the summer at the checkout in Wal-Mart. On the acting side of things, the woman who plays Trakeena cannot act to save her life and I cringe every moment she is on screen. The Zords are rescue vehicles that look like cartoonish Tonka truck toys: fire truck, tanker, jet, hazmat truck, and ambulance. Also, their second Zords are rescue Zords that are also...trains? It seems so random and not at all cool. But by far one of the worst things about the series is where I might get a lot of hate: the Titanium Ranger. He was completely American-made, which is what makes him so horrible in my opinion. His outfit looks NOTHING like his teammates other than the helmet, which makes him seem to clash with the others. Also, I see no reason why he's called the Titanium Ranger instead of just the Silver Ranger since the other rangers don't name themselves after other elements. They go by Lightspeed Red, Lightspeed Blue, etc. Also, being American-made, the producers had access to the costume 24/7. They spent so much money making the costume, so why was it barely used? The Titanium ranger's appearances were so few and so sporadic, it almost makes you wonder why they tried to incorporate him in the first place. The whole season is a mess and it stands above all others, in my opinion, as the worst Power Rangers series. But enough with my rant.
17. Power Rangers: Jungle Fury
Jungle Fury is that bad stepchild that you want to like, but just can't. It had such promise due to amazing designs, a really cool looking White Ranger, the first Purple Ranger (who was not only a guy, but a wolf), and the Spirit Rangers. But all that couldn't save a series that was troubled from the beginning with bad writing and poor execution. As much as I try to like Casey, I can't. Sure, he's a different type of Red Ranger: he's a leader, but he's not a muscle head. He's a meek-looking quasi-nerd who is also a pacifist. Yes, that could have made for an interesting Red Ranger, but the writers struggled to make it work and it never came into its full potential. The morphing devices were horribly lame and completely clashed with the theme and concept. Someone PLEASE tell me how anyone can think that a series about our inner animal spirit and martial arts should use sunglasses as it's morphing devices. I just don't understand it. It's so disjointed and makes absolutely no sense. The producers and writers were obvious drunk when they came up with that one.
16. Power Rangers: Operation Overdrive
I don't remember much about Operation Overdrive, but I did watch it. That must be a testament to how not really bad, but more like...how forgettable it was. I remember the "Once A Ranger" team-up, but that's it. When a team-up featuring the son of the first two villains (Rita and Lord Zedd) and various Power Rangers of the past is your shining moment, I think that speaks volumes about how lame the rest of the season is. It seems that by making that two-parter, the writers and producers acknowledged that the series needed a shot in the arm and had to pull from various other seasons to do so. Yes, it saved the season and keeps this season from placing dead last, but does it help me remember anything else about the series? Nope, I don't remember their names, their Zords, their morphing calls, or the theme song. It's like my memory is trying to do me a favor by completely wiping it from my mind.
15. Power Rangers: Lost Galaxy
Four words: Charlie Brown Power Rangers. Yes, it was a follow-up to the very strong In Space season, but it never felt completely right to me. Bulk as a bartender minus Skull felt wrong, the uniforms look like Charlie Brown designed them, and the series doesn't really get good until the In Space team up. It also was really awesome for a while when it killed off the Pink Ranger and replaced her with Karone (which was a bit random), but then it brought back Kendrix and suddenly that whole storyline no longer interested me. It made us believe that Power Rangers finally did the unthinkable and killed off a Power Ranger, only to retcon it later and made sure to assert just how lame it was by changing it. You did something so right. You made a team-up episode that was so epic and done so perfectly, but then you wrecked it by undoing it later on. Why, Lost Galaxy? Why?
14. Power Rangers: Megaforce
Despite that awesome piece of art above, Megaforce was such a let down. I hoped for something along the lines of the its original Super Sentai concept, with the Power Rangers possessing an angel motif and being these otherworldly beings. However, the motif is never elaborated on, Robo Knight is such a dumb name and pointless character, and the Pink Ranger CANNOT act her way out of a paper bag. The series was fun in places for it's little throwbacks to Mighty Morphin' here and there, but Megaforce instead stands as a testament to wasted potential.
13. Power Rangers: Samurai
Shinkenger, the Super Sentai season that this season was based on, was one of the better ones in my opinion, so it stands to reason that Samurai should have been pretty good, too. However, execution once again did it in. Power Rangers was never known for amazing actors (except a few break-outs here and there) but NEVER was the acting as painfully bad as it is here and in Megaforce. Samurai began the yearly tradition of having the Pink Ranger being a terrible actress, which is tragic when compared to the great actresses of the past who portrayed Pink Rangers (notably Amy Jo Johnson, Catherine Sutherland, Patricia Ja Lee, and Erin Cahill). But Samurai's biggest mistake was stripping so much of the Eastern influence when the premise (Samurais, kanji symbol power) was dependent on it. It left the series a bit disjointed. Bulk was a much needed plus, but the series didn't get good until Super Samurai, but more on that later.
12. Power Rangers: SPD
In no way am I going to say that SPD is a bad series. It's far from it. However, I do feel the series suffered a bit from being too busy and having too much going on. There were already enough Power Rangers in this season without introducing the, in my opinion, unnecessary A-Squad Rangers. The A-Squad outfits were an obvious hodge-podge of other costume pieces, down to the re-purposed In Space helmets and it made them look quite ridiculous. I do applaud SPD for attempting to introduce a female Red Ranger with A-Squad Red, even if she was evil. This season felt so muddled in places and I never really liked the B-Squad Red Ranger for some reason. But SPD did have some good moments and was far from a terrible series, I just can't place it higher because of so much unnecessary stuff that I felt weighed the series down.
11. Power Rangers: Super Samurai
Super Samurai was basically just a bunch of power-ups (but they were pretty cool power-ups), but it is clearly better than Samurai. Perhaps the best part was Lauren, the first ever female Red Ranger. Lauren was also pretty kick-ass and proved a girl could wear red and lead the team. My few complaints about Super Samurai was that at first, the scenes between Lauren and Jayden seemed to play out more romantic than brotherly/sisterly, but perhaps Alex Heartman had a crush on Kimberley Crossman? I don't know, but Super Samurai was a pretty decent season, especially when compared to Samurai. I feel both series could have been better if they had been combined into a single series. Oh, and the Pink Ranger still hasn't improved much as actress...and it's still quite painful to watch her.
10. Power Rangers: Turbo
I didn't wanna rank it this low, I really didn't. Nostalgia made me want to rank it higher, but let's face it: Turbo nearly killed Power Rangers. Alpha 6 was annoying first of all. I mean, why does a robot have a Brooklyn accent? It was the end of an era for MMPR fans as we said goodbye to Zordon, Alpha 5, Tommy, Kat, Adam, Tanya, and Rocky. All the changes throughout the entire series, along with the fact the writers tried to make a comedic series into a serious series, made this a very disjointed season. When it was good, it was good. But when it was bad, oh boy, was it bad. Also, it needed more Phantom Ranger and the writers really should have pursued their idea to reveal his identity as Billy. It might have helped save the series...on second thought, I don't think it would have helped that much.
9. Power Rangers: Ninja Storm
I know Ninja Storm is pretty popular and I liked it, but it's not one of my absolute favorite series. I think the rangers are great and the story is pretty solid, but I don't much care for the villains. I'm also not big on the plot point of your-Sensei-and-my-father-is-a-guinea-pig, but overall the series is pretty good. One of the more solid seasons with some pretty decent writing. It's not really a stand out for me, but Tori being the first female Blue Ranger was pretty refreshing at a time when Power Rangers was getting a bit repetitive. I think it could have been much more entertaining if they pursued the Power Rangers: Hexagon idea. Trust me, Google it and enjoy what could have been.
8. Power Rangers: Wild Force
Wild Force was an great season. From a Red Ranger who was like none before him to the historic "Forever Red" episode, it was a solid, entertaining season with great writing. The helmets remain some of my favorite yet, the Zords are really cool, and the acting is even pretty good. The highlight of the season will always be the 10th anniversary "Forever Red" episode, which goes down in history as one of, if not the best team-up in Power Rangers history.
7. Power Rangers: Mystic Force
Mystic Force was the series that made Power Rangers cool again in my opinion. The theme was upbeat and made me sing along and bob my head. The costumes are the coolest in the entire series to me personally, the Zords and Megazords are awesome, and the theme of magic and the whole Xena: Warrior Princess feel it seemed to have made it really interesting. I love how they brought Rita back as Mystic Mother and it was an interesting story arc to see her come from the Empress of Evil to the source of all good magic, and thus, the Mystic Force Rangers themselves. Also, the suit of armor-style costumes that the extra rangers wore were really cool. It gave the series this whole Mystic Knights of Tir Na Nog feel, which was really nice because I loved that show, too.
6. Power Rangers: RPM
I know RPM has a cult following as one of the best Disney-produced Power Ranger series, and I do admit it's really, really good, but I can't watch much of it a time. The high-speed morphing scenes and opening credits makes me motion sick, so it kind of ruins my viewing experience a bit. However, RPM has some of the strongest, best quality writing in the entire Power Ranger series to date. Gem and Gemma are such great characters as well as some of my favorite 6th and 7th rangers. I love their sibling dynamic and the ranger costume designs for all seven are amazing.
5. Power Rangers: Dino Thunder
Dino Thunder did the unthinkable and brought back Tommy as it's mentor and later, Black Ranger. Although it seemed a bit unlikely that martial-artist-turned-race-car-driver Tommy was now a "doctor" of any kind, he was still bad-ass all these years later. Tommy is arguably the most popular ranger of all time and to see him back in action was a treat. Dino Thunder did suffer a bit in writing here and there, but it was a great season. It was full of MMPR goodies for the fans, especially the dino theme. What's interesting about it is that with the MMPR toys, Tommy's figure usually sported a dino on his chest coin and that dino was a brachiosaurus, like Titanus. Years later as the Black Ranger, Tommy commanded a brachiosaurus. Coincidence or did the Dino Thunder writers plan it? We may never know but it's a cool little nod to MMPR nonetheless. The only thing I hate about Dino Thunder? Adding that bit of silver to the MMPR Green Ranger's helmet. Don't fix what's not broken.
4. Power Rangers: Zeo
I will defend Zeo's spot at number 4 with my life. Zeo was an event, a huge one at that. From the serials teasing it for weeks, to the explosive finale of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers that led right into it, this was HUGE. The Zeo powers were supposed to grow more and more powerful with use and by the time the rangers grew to take on King Mondo, it felt like that was finally explored. The Gold Ranger was hands-down one of the coolest rangers ever. Bringing back Jason was a great idea and it made it feel like classic MMPR again. Not to mention that the theme song will forever stay in my head. Zeo had some great episodes and Alex Borstein to boot (she was Queen Machina). Miss Swan! Lois Griffin! I mean, how awesome is that? Zeo was the last great season until In Space and it really makes Turbo seem pointless. I mean, why inexplicably switch to the Turbo powers when the Zeo powers only grow stronger with each use? I don't blame Zeo for that inconsistency, but instead Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie. As for the casting shake-ups, I liked Tanya, sometimes more than Aisha, who had started to become annoying. And it's also sad that Billy left the series. Even sadder was what he went through behind the scenes from writers and producers. That aside, Zeo was a solid series in my opinion.
3. Power Rangers: Time Force
Time Force was such a great, solid series. The acting was strong, as was the writing. Part of this series' success is owed to the fact that it closely followed the Super Sentai series it was adapted from, Timeranger. Also, it was refreshing to have a Pink Ranger who was not only bad-ass, but led the team! Jen Scotts is arguably the most popular Pink Ranger of all time as she emerged as the only girl in the top 5 of the Morphin' Madness tournament. I never understood why the Quantum Ranger was red when we already had a red ranger, but the series is so strong, that it doesn't matter. This was clearly Erin Cahill's series as she stole the show. The moment when she first sees Wes is some of the single greatest acting in Power Rangers history. I actually prefer Time Force to In Space, but I'll explain when I ranked In Space higher in a second.
2. Power Rangers In Space
In Space suffered a bit from the fact that it's NOTHING like it's source material. Megaranger (the Super Sentai series it was adapted from) was about virtual reality, but when Saban started to plan for the adaptation, they had only seen some footage and assumed it was about space. So we got In Space. It caused some inconsistencies here and there, but the writing was strong enough to make up for it for the most part. I wasn't big on Andros, but I love Astronema. The series started off lighthearted, but took a darker and more emotional turn that really solidified the series as one that would stand above others. Although I liked it a bit less than Time Force, the finale of the series alone earned it the number two spot. Seeing Bulk and Skull evolve into the selfless heroes they are in the finale was some of the best character development in the entire series. It was sad seeing the Zordon era come to an end, but we finally got closure and it wrapped things up so beautifully. I admit, I cried when Andros shattered Zordon's energy tube. Must be those onions, man.
1. Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers
I know what you are going to say. Yes it was cheesy and the effects are old, but hear me out. Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers was a PHENOMENON and back in the day, if you were a fan it was EVERYTHING. Who didn't wanna be a Power Ranger? It spawned toys, live shows, books, cards, a movie, countless video games, comics, copycats, coloring books, clothes, dolls, home videos, board games, a fan club, various other merchandise, and the boom of Japanese adaptations in America. Our parents fought crowds to buy the toys for us at Christmas. It was that huge. It is the single most successful kids' series of all time and has evolved into such a cult hit that us adults still watch it and love it. This WAS our childhood. It's 2014 and MMPR has already been re-invisoned in 2010, there is a new line of MMPR graphic novels coming out, a new movie has been announced, and they are still making MMPR toys and merchandise. That's something that cannot be said about ANY other series.Yes, were getting other series' figures in the Super Megaforce line, but there is not the sheer number of merchandise like there is for MMPR. MMPR also launched the careers of Amy Jo Johnson and Jason David Frank, gave birth to arguably the two most popular rangers (Green and White), and launched an multi-billion dollar empire. Not only that, but it ran for three seasons, explored so much, and had so many great stories. And I think we all pretty much can agree that "Green With Evil" and "The Green Candle" are the two greatest story arcs in Power Rangers history. Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers IS Power Rangers. We simply cannot imagine the 90's without it. It made that much of an impact on our lives and pop culture as we know it.