Lupinranger VS Patoranger – Episode 2 Review

I’m relieved the slick choreography and camera work of the first episode continues into the second. Often, a new Sentai will make the first episode look fancy to give a good first impression without carrying any of the fanciness on through the rest of the show. Here, it seems the long takes and lateral camera movements used to show off the geography of fight scenes is going to be part of the show’s style rather than just a cool thing they did a few times to make the premiere memorable.Read More

Lupinranger VS Patoranger – Episode 1 Review

Wow. Really, wow. It’s easy to give good reviews to Super Sentai premiere episodes. After watching the same series for 50 weeks, just having brand new suits and characters and settings and toys to play with is all a premiere needs to feel fresh and exciting. Because of that, I tend to wave away a lot of issues with first episodes that would be a deal breaker in any other situation. For example, I go into Sentai first episodes expecting the pacing to be nonexistent due to the episode spendingRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 48 (Finale) Review

And so, we arrive at the end. This was a strong ending for the series that like the previous episode managed to do the ‘power of love’ ending in a way that made sense and was heavily foreshadowed. One of the reasons why I’ve enjoyed Uchu Sentai Kyuranger so much is that its central message, that anyone and everyone can make a difference, has been clearly expressed and explored throughout all 48 episodes. It’s a simple message that’s not exactly groundbreaking, but having that sort of strong thematic core givesRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 46 Review

From the very start, this episode had an epic scale to it. The pre-title sequence alone gives the impression that this could be the last episode of the series. It’s repeatedly emphasised, like with the final Kyulette chance from the end of the previous episode, that this is the last time we’ll see the team saying their trademark catchphrases and doing their trademark things. It’s crazy to think that I was worried when this series was first announced about whether or not a 12-person Sentai would work. Not only haveRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 45 Review

Following on from the reveal of Don Armage’s identity, I love that Tsurugi is now in the same position Lucky was in before. It’s easy to give out advice when you aren’t the one who has to make the final decision, so giving the same tough choice to Tsurugi about killing a loved one possessed by evil is a unique twist to the standard moral lessons in Sentai, or any kids TV show I can think of. But as much as it’s a neat twist to have two people dealRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 44 Review

I love that this episode started with a message from the alien pop star guy, confirming that there is some sort of organised galactic resistance going in the background. I’d have hoped to see an episode based around this resistance coming together, Star Wars Rebels style, but that’s not really a priority of this show. Still, I’m glad we got something, even if it was a little too ‘tell’ rather than ‘show’. If nothing else, a Star Wars Rebels style episode about the rebellion coming together would have been moreRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 43 Review

The opening of this episode was pretty damn slick, from some unmorphed fighting to almost a full-team henshin to the logo followed by a really cool shot of the rangers silhouetted in their colours. It really feels like we’re in endgame territory now. The fight with Aslan had some good choreography, which was helped a lot by his suit being something the actor could actually fight well in instead of being a bulky monster costume. That said, I wish there was a little bit more to Lucky’s dad turning goodRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 41 Review

This episode got off to a strong start with a longer than average pre-title sequence. Rather than taking down the Crux System’s shield with the click of a Kyutama, we actually see the effort it took to get in position and activate everything. I love how competent the Kyurangers are as a team and this opening does a good job of showing them planning a mission and executing it perfectly. There’s some really cool time-jump stuff here too, where we’ll see the action spliced with flashbacks to when the planRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 40 Review

From completing trials to taking part in a LARP to playing baseball, this arc of Kyuranger is basically using collecting another set of Kyutama as an excuse to go to different themed planets for gimmick-based filler episodes. For me, Kyuranger‘s filler has been better than most Sentai‘s due to how many characters and subplots there are weaving in and out of the show’s main focus. Even if it looks like nothing substantial is happening on paper, the team is always moving closer to their goal of liberating the universe andRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 39 Review

This episode got off to an amazing start. Champ’s whole arc has been one of the strongest in the show and this is probably its most significant episode. Not only do we have the return of the Champ prototypes, but the appearance of Professor Anton as a villain. It feels instantly refreshing to see a cackling villain who isn’t playing the part while wearing a big rubber monster suit. There’s something unsettling and horrifying about the zombie professor who exists merely as a hologram. He’s such a unique idea forRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 38 Review

Despite being a space-based Sentai, I wouldn’t exactly call Kyuranger a sci-fi series. It’s more like a fantasy with the way most of the powers go unexplained. I’m not saying I expect a technical explanation for how things like the changers work; that’s part of the premise of the show. It’s like the TARDIS being bigger on the inside in Doctor Who: sure, it’s strange but that’s just the background stuff, the hows and whys of which never really becoming part of the main action. When I say powers goRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 37 Review

I know it’s a small thing, but I love those scenes at the beginning of every episode where the Kyurangers figure out what their next mission is. The fact that we get one at the start of every episode in the pre-opening space where most Sentai teams would be chilling at their HQ means that the default setting of the Kyuranger team is more active rather than passage. They’re always on the move and they’re always getting work done to save the universe. It’s also just a nice way ofRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 36 Review

Totally called it! The overall theme of Kyuranger has been that ordinary people can make a difference, so it makes sense that the endgame we’re building to involves the universe rising up to overthrow Jark Matter. Using the pop star from the last episode as a catalyst for the uprising was an unexpected twist but it makes a lot of sense given his role in inspiring Hammy and how his numerous appearances throughout previous episodes have already established him as a well-known and influential figure in the universe. Having himRead More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 34 Review

When Xiao Longbao came out of the deep-sleep chamber thing in the last episode, my immediate first reaction was ‘Okay, so where’s Champ? He’s a robot so he probably doesn’t need to go into hibernation, but where is he?’ It was brought up briefly at the end of the last episode that he went to find Professor Anton, and now we have the result of that search. One of the things that’s so impressive to me about Kyuranger and one of the reasons why I think it’s lasted for 34Read More

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 32 Review

We skip over the usual opening narration this week to go straight to Don Armage addressing his minions. It’s a strong opening that shows for the first time since the Kyurangers returned to the present that he really is still around and nothing has changed at all. The church setting is a striking choice for a such a short scene but it works really well and it makes me miss the more visually-interesting villain lairs in series like ToQger. The main purpose of this opening to get us onto theRead More