No Ranger is safe. Or so they tell us in the promos for the upcoming Power Rangers: Shattered Grid, the first mega-crossover event from the stellar comic book series published by BOOM! Studios. Based on the exploits of the Teenagers With Attitude from Angel Grove High and their many successors in the long-running superhero franchise, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Go Go Power Rangers have been showing us how it’s done in the pages of their two ongoing comic series, outmatching the current TV series in quality at every turn. With Shattered Grid, the two share the grand canvas of this massive story that seeks to gather up Rangers from all over the television continuity for a crossover the likes of which fans have never seen. A trailer has been released featuring the voice of Green Ranger Tommy Oliver himself, actor Jason David Frank.
The video chiefly features imagery found in previous issues of the comics, where the villainous Lord Drakkon is first introduced. An alternate universe incarnation of the Tommy fans know, he’s first met by heroes from the familiar Rangerverse when they accidentally are shunted to his dystopian reality, where he rules with an iron (or spandex) fist. Spoiler Alert: He loses that particular fight, but manages to escape justice with a dramatic retreat. Now, we’re revving up for the rematch.
Full disclosure. While I’m loving the comics that BOOM! has been putting out, offering an epic tale of young heroes finding their way and saving the day with action and intrigue that puts character first, I have to be honest and say that I hope the next big event has nothing to do with you-know-who. It’s a nice coo to get the original actor to reprise the character in the trailer, and to have such a well-known presence as a centerpiece for this story. But if I could wave a crescent moon wand and grant any wish for the Rangers in print, it would be that the next several steps for them are largely unrelated to the same obvious thing. Let’s spread our wings a little more, expand, grow, and find new territory to explore.
And maybe it’s a funny time to say that, considering how far the Shattered Grid event proposes to reach. Before the story is over, fans will have seen appearances from characters only seen in their own isolated seasons of the franchise, some taking place in advanced futures, separate realities, or otherwise unrelated settings, rarely having the chance to encounter each other or resurface again once their time is up, except as fairly minor background noise in the few spandex-first anniversary episodes in recent years that sometimes disappoint more than they excite. It’s a big deal. And it’s not all about one dude. Which it never has, as far as the comic is concerned. Though we won’t pretend that we’re not all leaning a little further in one direction than another.
In the meantime, there’s plenty more to celebrate. Like two more great comic covers to add to the list:
On our right, we have the introduction of a brand-new Ranger suit never seen in the television series before. It joins the Drakkon suit in the small category of costumes created exclusively for the comics. Though the outfit is new, the character underneath is said to be a familiar face. A female character that fans may already be aware of.
Interesting then that the cover to the left features the eccentric young genius Doctor K from Power Rangers RPM, protected from robotic Grinders by two Red Rangers, including what appears to be Lauren from Power Rangers Samurai, who herself is in the small category of female Reds. Will K be adding to that roster? It’s said that this mystery hero’s connection to the original Rangers will be very personal, so at face value, that would seem to rule her out. And we haven’t been showcasing Angela, Black Ranger Zack’s main love interest in the early days of the TV series, so unless they do it in the next five minutes, I don’t know about that either (though, yes, I’m totally here for it).
In any case, the comic series seems to have it all figured out and I, for one, welcome our new Ranger overlord. Though I will not promise to applaud if he overstays his welcome. Power Rangers: Shattered Grid starts with a prelude in this month’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Issue #24 before officially kicking off in March.
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