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 the trail of the main villain with a vague lead from Naga. The triumphant return of the Kyulette dance was amazing, especially when I was just starting to miss it. Also, is it just me or is the ‘Oh no, we’re under attack!’ music in this pre-title sequence and a few of the previous episodes recently incredibly similar to the Weeping Angel music from Doctor Who, complete with the dramatic ramping sound?

After a particularly epic version of the opening sequence, we are introduced to our monster of the week who actually had quite a cool design despite how goofy his powers are. I like his gold and dark grey costume and, despite what anyone in-universe says, I do think his weapons are cool. They make him look a lot better in a fight rather than just awkwardly smashing at the rangers with oddly-shaped fists like most other villains do. I liked Raptor stepping in to protect the monster in the hopes that she could use its ability to fix the Orion. We often get monsters of the week who’s powers are in some way related to the theme of an episode, but here it’s less of a coincidence and more of a plot point.

Raptor’s connection to the Orion was set up really well early on in the series and it’s satisfying to see it pay off here. I particularly liked Tsurugi’s coldness towards the ship rubbing up against what at first seems like Super Sentai‘s trademark optimistic sentimentality, but then it’s revealed to be deeper than that and that the Orion might actually be sentient. The final ‘good luck’ message as well as the Orion’s sacrifice in general was a strong moment that confirmed the twist that the ship was alive while also being well set-up and feeling earned. The ship rushing in to save the day was ‘lucky’, like a lot of things in Kyuranger, but by having the ship actually be destroyed beyond repair, it felt more meaningful. Yes the resolution to the episode came out of nowhere but it cost the Kyurangers a ship (for now), so there is some genuine loss.

Exploding Consumarz is a threat we’ve done many, many times before in Kyuranger but the biological goo that interferes with machinery was a fresh idea at least. If I were to give this episode any other criticism, it’d be that the cutting back and forth between the fight with the monster and Lucky’s quiet moments with Raptor was a little jarring and didn’t flow as well as it could have. The serious conversation happening at a children’s play park was also kinda weird but I don’t know if it’s a flaw exactly; it just felt out of place for these characters. It felt like something that would’ve worked perfectly in ToQger were all the main characters are children. As cliché as it is, there’s a reason why dramatic scenes in parks usually take place on swings, and that’s because a climbing frame is just really weirdly distracting. Again, not necessarily a flaw, just a strange choice.

Speaking of strange choices, the big bad villain showing up to shoot lasers at the Kyurangers while they were busy fighting the monster of the week only to disappear as suddenly as he showed up was just…odd. Like, I get that they wanted to establish a new recurring villain, but surely there are better ways to do it than awkwardly throwing him into the middle of a fight in progress. For example, they could’ve merged the big bad villain and the monster of the week into the same character, so the recurring villain is the one with the exploding technology goo who gets the spotlight this week.

This was mostly just an alright episode of Kyuranger but it was made more memorable by the sacrifice of the Orion at the end. I also liked how the main message of the episode was for both Raptor to accept the ‘death’ of the Orion AND for Tsurugi to be less of a jerk. Kyuranger continues to impress and I’m looking forward to the debut of the new ship.

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