Sunday, March 15, 2009
Rangers' Run Nearing An End
Something really depressing has recently come to my attention. Sources including the New York Post are reporting that production is ending on the long running Power Rangers series and the current season will be its last. While the toys still sell and the show is still popular in some markets, ratings are down (I wonder if the horrid scheduling has something to do with that) and Disney doesn't want to pay for more episodes. They've always under-budgeted the show, never realizing how much re-filming is required to produce the Western version of the show. At this point no one knows how or if the franchise will continue. There have been long standing rumors that Disney will turn Power Rangers into a more cost effective animated series. Since Toei no longer has create a program that can appeal to international audiences their current Sentai series Samurai Sentai Shinkenger is filled with elements of traditional Japanese culture including Origami based mecha. In fact the previous Sentai series, Engine Sentai Go-onger, also seems to have been produced without much regard to international audiences. There's a declining birth rate in Japan so Go-onger skewed towards a younger audience as kind of a "get 'em while they're young approach". Many didn't believe Disney would bother to adapt Go-onger and instead produce the previously mentioned animated series. But a Westernized version of Go-onger is airing as Power Rangers RPM. In order to combat the cutesy feel of the original Japanese series the Disney producers added a lot of darkness to their version. Power Rangers RPM takes place in a post apocalyptic wasteland where humanity have retreated to domed off cities. I haven't been a serious Power Rangers viewer in ten years. I've caught it only extremely sporadically since then. It's been about three years since I've watched any newer episode. I caught a bit of RPM yesterday and it seemed surprisingly cool. I'd like to watch some more but apparently the show is currently only airing on ABC and isn't even on Disney XD's rotation. I feel like I've taken the series for granted and assumed it would always be around in some incarnation. Is a world without teams of multicolored spandex wearing superheroes a world we want to live in? I think this is becoming "LOLZ I grew up during the 90s" week here at AFOS.