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Akibaranger Season 2 Episode 5: Delusion Imports

By  | May 13, 2013 | Featured, Reviews | With 8 Comments

vlcsnap-2013-05-13-07h26m10s65They’ve done it folks…they’ve crossed the sea.  This week Akibaranger faces down one of their best and most dangerous rivals…the Powerful Rangers! Yep, Power Rangers finally makes its first official appearance and it is glorious.  This might be one of the best wink-wink episodes of Akibaranger yet, for fans from Japan and America alike.

More after the jump…

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The reason for Luna’s return is laid bare this week: Hakase had to actually pay her to appear as an Akibaranger, so she could only afford to hire her that once!  Luna is still trying to make it big as an idol, but without a third member the gang is really off balance.  Akagi and company try yet again to appeal to Luna by convincing her that being an Akibaranger will help her career by cornering her outside an audition she’s attending for a big name North American film director.

The audition is a nice short parody of the American Director (aptly named George Spielburton in the show), and it ends with Luna making an understandable, yet extremely flawed observation…

vlcsnap-2013-05-13-07h25m59s182Luna saw Spielburton playing with two action figures (Tommy and Jason), and made the assumption that because he was a fan of Powerful Rangers, which resembled Sentai, that Sentai was actually a copy of Powerful Rangers.  Of course Akagi and Moegi explode with nerd rage, Sentai was born in Japan obviously!  However…a battle with Malshina introduces two new fighters to the Akibaranger Guest Star list…Tommy and Jason!

vlcsnap-2013-05-13-07h29m32s39Well not exactly.  You see, this is the Powerful Rangers!  They’re the show that Super Sentai copied off of, by taking it’s footage and…wait…wut?  It seems that Red and Green here think Akibaranger is the enemy, and their sworn to destroy the “copycats” any way they can!  And back in reality, it looks like history has changed yet again to make the Powerful Ranger the original series, and Sentai the copycat!  Akagi and Moegi have a lot on their hands this week…

This episode contains a very caricatured version of the Power Rangers, one that has to be seen to be properly experienced.  Everything about these two is perfectly in line with a habit or styling of the Power Ranger series, versus how they would have done it in Super Sentai…but it has a very clown-like feeling to it.  Meant to be taken as a lighthearted jab more than a scathing review, the Powerful Rangers are a send up that easily could not have happened.  This is the kind of crossover you just wouldn’t see Power Rangers or Super Sentai doing, but Akibaranger acknowledges that there are fans in another country who watch Sentai in some form.  And even if it’s sometimes confused for the source material, there’s no forgetting where Sentai really comes from once you know.

vlcsnap-2013-05-13-07h32m08s65This episode has its low points though.  The monster of the week is a little..well, weak.  But at least the more time goes on the more we learn about this new baddie, General Pain.  He’s a super fan of Sentai, on Akagi’s level or better (and I think that’s some heavy foreshadowing), and he’s gained some sort of disciple named Akina…but honestly let’s get back to talking about Powerful Rangers.  The B-plot in this episode is just a little weak.

I noticed some subtle things that were pretty cool about the fight sequences with the Powerful Rangers.  They moved more like boxers and pro wrestlers than flashy martial artists, and they preferred to punch, chop and even choke the Akibarangers!  Punches to the face and choking were two things specifically edited out and reshot from Super Sentai footage that Saban used for Power Rangers, to hopefully avoid children emulating the actions on the playground.  The fact that the Powerful Rangers use those actions made me chuckle a little, given it’s something the Power Rangers could never do on North American TV.

vlcsnap-2013-05-13-07h31m00s145It goes a little further.  Their Japanese is terrible and very funny (Red rolls all his r’s like a Japanese high school delinquent), and their Engrish-y reactions are great.  At the end of the episode, a prop familiar to Japanese and American fans alike shows up and does its thing!

vlcsnap-2013-05-13-07h33m07s124No more spoilers!  Watch the episode!  It’s really good!  And tune in next week for more!

  • http://www.facebook.com/ChrisFabinsky Chris Fabinsky

    you didn’t mention the thing that had me rolling….when the ‘powerful Rangers’ leapt into the fight, they used JDF’s ‘Sig-hiyah’.

  • Frob Man

    Extra points for pointing out that Steven Spielburton was played by none other than Koichi Sakamoto, who himself has a rich history with Power Rangers.

  • Tequilla

    They just mocked Power rangers, They just think ‘Power rangers’ is absurd and lame because it was ‘Super Sentai Series’. Even though I knew that episode was just funny joke, It was very disturbing. Writers of Akibaranger just put their thoughts which is “Super Sentai = Right / Power Rangers = Wrong, Bad, Stupid”

    They have no right to mock my childhood.
    Just gone too far, man.
    gone too far.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=48603769 Joe Masaki Locastro

    Now that’s not the right attitude at all! We’ve made fun of Super Sentai on Power Rangers (cars with eyes, anyone?), AND with our popular culture we lampoon all nations and races. Sure it stings a little but it’s in good fun. They’re born from a misconception, so their portrayals are likewise: goofy and off!

    Take it on the chin, dogg. They only did it for one episode! And be happy they did it at all. A sacred line that hasn’t really been crossed finally has, even it was by the clowns.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=48603769 Joe Masaki Locastro

    I noticed the SFX in the episode for sure, but I couldn’t tell if that was Over-Time’s subbers adding their writing too, heh. Great observation though!

  • http://www.facebook.com/keithhaywardprime Keith Justice Hayward

    I didn’t notice it was Koichi. :D


    This episode ROCKED

    General pain’s funny and hope to see more of him and face against the akibarangers face to face in upcoming episodes more and Koichi’s cameo was awesome donning the blonde wig and playing with powerful ranger toys.

    The powerful rangers literally acted like posers no pun intended And wow, the powerful red and green ranger act like an evil Bill and Ted and also felt like they kinda portrayed a Japanese stereotype of america in Japan.

    Moegi speech after getting beaten by the powerful rangers by saying and admiring the zyurangers for saving the super sentai franchise from cancellation was a touching tribute to super sentai being saved and in toy sales and as well as power rangers contribution to the franchise too in toy sales as mmpr became a billion dollar franchise which helped expand the sentai market overseas in the west as a kids brand under the power rangers name.

    And now with the internet the majority of fans who grew up with power rangers in the west are more aware of it’s original source material super sentai show

    Kyouryuu Sentai Zyuranger (Dinosaur Squadron BeastRangers)

    The zyurangers warriors of eternity reference to make tyrannoranger and dragonranger remember was so legendary, they remembered and fought the baddies in style, now that was really awesome and the zyuranger special power rocked too

    It’s funny since the 1 half of the director akibaranger Ryuta Tasaki worked not only kamen rider and super sentai, but also worked on power rangers lost galaxy amd lightspeed rescue too

    Akibaranger Season 2 is by far better than the 1st season so far. The next episode, Episode 6 was awesome too and now looking forward to the up to date episode with a 3 team gouraigers, now that’s gonna rock

  • samurai5911

    i loved the episode