Uchu Sentai Kyuranger – Episode 27 Review
So there’s good news and there’s bad news. The bad news is that this new arc is kicking off immediately with a clip show. Why couldn’t we have the clip show last week and the Naga stuff this week? As it stands, the show built up momentum and then immediately threw it away, leading to a weirdly paced start to Naga’s ‘evil ranger’ arc. The good news is that this clip show is genuinely funny. A lot of that comes from the presence of Xiao Longbao, a character who (much like every other Kyuranger) is probably my favourite. There’s something about his delivery combined with his big dumb dragon head with table tennis balls for eyes that makes anything he says or does funny to me.
The cast in general is great here. Spada, Raptor, Champ, Stinger, Xiao, and Tsurugi are a good line-up for a comedy bottle episode like this due to their history with one another (Champ and Stinger are partners and Spada and Raptor are basically Tsurugi’s own Sentai members) as well as their larger-than-life personalities.
The revelation that the indaver wear masks that limit their communication is a wonderfully dark detail that shows how oppressive Jark Matter is while also allowing for some fun moments, like the indaver Sentai team, complete with roll call. I love how they set that up with the indavers all being different colours, but it wasn’t until the red one arrived that it became obvious. Although this was mainly a comedic romp through various set pieces designed to trigger montages, we did get a some brief glimpses into what life as an indaver is like and how badly they’re treated. Giving a disposable Super Sentai henchman a voice is such a fresh idea with tons of potential that this episode only scratches the surface of. Taking the time to point out exactly which episodes each indaver was from was a fun touch that was a nice way into each montage I suppose.
My big problem though is that we shouldn’t have had any montages to begin with. I won’t dwell on it because it goes without saying, but clip shows are a waste of time and this was the most obvious piece of filler Kyuranger has done so far. Given we’re 27 episode in, that’s quite impressive. What makes it slightly better is that this episode didn’t need the montages at all. If they wanted to do some fun farce episode about henchmen, they could have easily done that, just by cutting out all the reused clips. The best montage (because I suppose if I’m reviewing the episode I should really pick my favourite) is the one about Kotaro and Xiao, because Xiao at least acknowledges that he’s just showing us clips he thinks look cool. His reasons for bringing up past adventures, especially to an indaver, didn’t make any sense but none of these clip shows do.
The Naga montage was the one that made the most sense in the story, but the clips chosen were weak. They focused on fighting rather than him learning about emotions, which is what the point of that montage was supposed to be. However, Spada explaining Kyutamas to a captured indaver wins the award for most forced montage of the episode. Maybe if it was a goofier character than Spada, or an indaver that had already won their trust by cooperating a bit more, sure, but the way it happened just made no sense. If nothing else it reminded me about the Pegasus Kyutama, which I originally thought was going to be way more important. When the show started, it felt to me like they were setting up the talking pegasus head to be a recurring character. Oh well.
Despite my complaining, I did enjoy this episode. The indaver characters were great and it had some fun moments, like when the Kyurangers started bickering while the red indaver gave his epic speech. It was an excellent clip show, I just don’t think they should’ve done a clip show.
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