Sunday, July 29, 2018

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Season 3, Episode 8: A Brush with Destiny

Previously on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, change was in the air.  There were new Ninja Powers, a new enemy in Rito Revolto, and a new goal for Bulk and Skull.  They wanted to be part of the Junior Police Patrol, a shift that changed them from being secondary antagonists to being bumbling allies of the Power Rangers.  It was the setup for what should be a fun third season.

Now we’re going into the first standalone episode of the third season.  It’ll be a break from the multi-part stories that started things off.  Based on the title, there’s not much to go on about what the episode will be.  Which character will be the central character?  What will the bad guys be doing?  Could Bulk and Skull have a bigger role?  All of these questions will be answered in…
Season 3, Episode 8: A Brush with Destiny
Kimberly was having problems at home.  Her mother was in love with a new man.  He was an artist who lived in Paris, which meant that Kimberly was going to have to move there.  She got lucky though.  When she confronted her mother, Aisha swooped in.  Kimberly was able to stay for the rest of the school year by living with Aisha.

The confrontation happened during an art showing that was being held by the Junior Police Patrol.  Bulk and Skull were in charge of security, making sure all of the art was safe.  They fell asleep on the job and awoke to a missing painting.  They searched high and low for the painting.  They harassed people at school to try and get any information.  In the end, the painting had been taken by Kimberly’s mom’s boyfriend to get reframed.

The missing painting led into the monster of the episode.  The Power Rangers, minus Kimberly, thought that the monster attacking Angel Grove was taken from the stolen painting.  It wasn’t.  It was stolen from Kimberly’s nightmares by Rito Revolto and Finster during a Tenga Warrior attack.  Because of the moving situation, Kimberly was having nightmares about a painter monster with a French accent.  Lord Zedd and Rita Repulsa thought it would be a good monster to use against Angel Grove.

When Kimberly got attacked by the Tenga Warriors, she lost her communicator, which meant that she wasn’t there for the initial attack against the monster.  The other five Power Rangers and Ninjor attacked the monster.  It used its paintbrush to drain their colours and their powers.  Kimberly was the only person who could save them, and she definitely came in clutch when she did.

The fights in the episode were nothing to write home about.  The Tenga Warrior fight was as standard as the minion fights could possibly be.  The only real interesting moment in it was when Tommy tried to save Kimberly and was pulled back by the creatures.  He reached out and couldn’t get to his friend.  The drama of that moment was more than most fights.  The fight against the smaller version of the paint monster was interesting in that nobody could touch him.  Only Kimberly, who attacked the paintbrush rather than the monster, was able to do any damage.  When it grew, the Zord fight was over almost as quickly as it began.  It was an underwhelming finale.

The end credits showed Bulk and Skull getting a pep talk from their boss, Lieutenant Stone, before the art showing.  He said that it was a very important event, and threatened them in case they didn’t do a good job.
The first standalone Mighty Morphin Power Rangers episode of season 3 was one of the best.  It tackled multiple storylines, making them intertwine in a satisfying way.  The Kimberly story bled into the Power Rangers story which bled into the Bulk and Skull storyline, which caused the Kimberly storyline.  It was all connected in a way that it sometimes isn’t, outside of “Bulk and Skull try to find the Power Rangers and fail.”  They’re not usually this intertwined, and it’s nice to see the effort put in to make them so.

Episodes like this are what make character-centric episodes so important to the series.  The multi-episode stories are good to have in that they move the plot of the show forward.  They change things for the foreseeable future.  The single episodes are good too.  They let you get to know the characters.  This specific episode let the audience know what was going on in Kimberly’s home life.  Her friends were the most important thing in her life and she was worried that she would be taken away from them without any real time to say goodbye.  She was having nightmares about it because it was happening so suddenly.  By the end, she was moving in with Aisha, which also showed how much Aisha valued her friends.  She would bring Kimberly into the house just to keep her from moving to Paris.  The two characters got some depth that connected the viewers to them more than before.

There’s not a whole lot to be said about this episode of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.  It was an episode about Kimberly going through a crisis, and the friends that banded together to help her out.  She fought off the nightmare, both literal and metaphorical, that was haunting her.  The monster in her dreams was banished, and her friends got rid of her nightmare of moving away.  There was some nice storytelling.  Will that continue into the next episode?  The only way to find out is to check out the next episode, and that will happen sometime soon.  See you then.

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