Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Power Rangers Samurai Episode Commentary #11

Episode 11: Test of the Leader
Written by: David Schneider and Samuel P. McLean
Directed by: Jonathan Brough

Xandred’s finally decided to tackle the Red Ranger and Spike develops a crush on the Pink Ranger. It’s all action in this week’s episode. Will we learn more about the sealing spell used to imprison Master Xandred? Will Bulk and Spike have some actual interaction with the Rangers? Will this review be better than the rather weak ones that have preceded it? For the answers to these questions and more read on!

For a change we kick off with Master Xandred and his crew. Octoroo has been worrying about what Deker said a few episodes back. Deker did seem a tad surprised that Xandred wasn’t being a bit more active in his pursuit of the Red Ranger and he’s not the only one as I’m sure anyone who read my review of that episode will have realised I was very surprised too. Octoroo has been doing his research and he’s discovered that the power to seal Xandred lies with the Samurai Shiba family headed by the Red Ranger (yeah Jayden sure looks like a Shiba). So at last Xandred finally decides it’s time to take action against the Red Ranger about bloody time. What genius scheme has he got? Oh he’s sending Mooger’s the grunts the Rangers defeat every single week. Way to bring your A game Xandred ya putz.

Post credits and we’re kicking off with Bulk and Spike. The Power Rangers are in this episode right? For a couple of guys that don’t appear to have jobs they spend a lot of time shopping or at the arcade. Anyway our hapless heroes have run into rampaging Moogers. They may not have the skills of Samurai warriors but they certainly have the heart. Bulk and Spike stand their ground and prepare to fight the Moogers armed only with bread sticks and an umbrella. Those brave souls truly know no fear. Well for about five seconds before they scarper in fear. Ah well. Just as things look the bleakest for Bulk and Spike the Rangers arrive to save the day. Mia leaps to the aid of Spike and he appears to  be quite smitten with the Pink Ranger. Like father like son I guess.

There are little Moogers and giant Moogers so the team has been split in two. Mia and Emily deal with the runts whilst the boys crack out the recently acquired Samurai Battlewing. The Battlewing certainly proves it’s worth by taking down those giant Moogers pretty quickly allowing the boys to rejoin the girls for a good old fashioned Mooger beat down. But these Moogers aren’t giving up easy they just keep coming and coming. Just what the fudge is going on? These Moogers are only interested in one thing and that thing is Jayden! The Red Ranger has built up a pretty good team and they are all willing to stand by his side and try and protect him from this Mooger attack. Jayden’s wanted to try out a new symbol combo for a while and decides to leave Emily completely defenceless by taking her sword. It works out though and the Moogers are dealt with. Once the battle is complete talk turns to Captain Half-Arsed I mean Master Xandred. They all seem to be a bit surprised to discover he’s back. Who the hell do you think has been sending all these damn Nighloks to fight you? Geez! Back down with Xandred and co it appears only Octoroo actually cares about what’s going on with the Rangers. Seriously these guys are the worst villains ever. They deserve every single defeat.

Bulk’s hamming it up old school as he proudly displays his “injuries” from his first Samurai battle. Spike’s applying bandages and I’m pretty sure we can all see where this is going. Spike’s fantasising face is something I can live without seeing ever again but I was right Bulk’s all bandaged up like a mummy. Back at Ranger HQ and the team are about to learn one of Jayden’s secrets. There’s a secret symbol that the last Red Ranger used to seal Xandred away with. Queue a flash back sequence to that fateful battle. We see the previous Samurai Rangers getting hacked and slashed by Xandred’s forces (these Rangers look slightly Japanese as they de-morph…). Basically we get to see Xandred sealed away but we do learn that only Jayden has the power to defeat Xandred once and for all. Only downside is it takes unbelievable symbol power to achieve even Jayden’s father couldn’t get it quite right! Octoroo has realised this and he’s picked a new Monster of the Week to take on Jayden. This week’s Nighlok is Robtish who for some unknown reason has a Scottish accent.

The revelations about Jayden’s ability to use his symbol power to seal away Captain Half-Arsed once and for all has got the Rangers talking. They’ve now decided that it’s their mission to protect Jayden above all else something he’s not particularly keen on. It’s a burden to him realising just how far his team will go to protect him and it’s a burden he doesn’t want to carry. He gets quite forceful with them reminding them they’re a team and they need to look out for themselves. Before things can get too heated the Nighlok sensor goes off and the Rangers have to head out to meet their latest foe. Robtish reveals to Jayden and the gang that Xandred is aware of the Red Rangers abilities and challenges him to a duel. Kevin doesn’t want Jayden getting involved in this kind of battle but Jayden ain’t sitting this one out. Jayden duels Robtish as the rest of the Rangers battle the Moogers. Oh look Deker’s popped by to watch the action. Things aren’t look good for Jayden. With the aid of his double slash Robtish has floored and disarmed the Red Ranger. He’s about to try the move again when Kevin and Emily bravely jump in front and take the brunt of the attack. Jayden is devastated to be responsible for his friends getting hurt. Just as he’s about to deal with Mike and Mia Deker intervenes and starts kicking everyone’s arse. This leads to a rather exciting three way duel between the Red Ranger, Deker and Robtish. It’s rather fun watching the three of them battle so fiercely and Jayden proves himself to be quite the warrior despite going down so easily earlier. Luckily for him Robtish is all dried out and is forced to depart.

With Robtish gone it’s time for the main event. Deker versus Jayden. Unfortunately the battle against Robtish has left Jayden weakened and it’s all about the battle for Deker so he postpones their duel. I am rather looking forward to these two finally getting down to a proper battle I’m sure it’ll make very entertaining viewing. As for now Deker gives Jayden a flash of his human form and his beard before departing once again. The battle has left Kevin and Emily in a bad way and it’s quite clearly distressing Jayden who blames himself. As the rest of the team recover at HQ Jayden departs into the dark of the night refusing to put his friends at risk again. This is his fight and he needs to do it his way. So ends the episode and we’re left with all new questions to answer  but they’ll have to wait until next time dear reader.

Next time: The story continues in Jayden’s Challenge

Pics from the PRS Gateway as always

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