Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Power Rangers Samurai Episode Commentary #15

Episode 15: The Blue and the Gold
Written by: David Schneider and Jill Donnellan
Directed by: Akihiro Noguchi

We’re fast approaching the end of the first season of Power Rangers Samurai. There’s even a slight chance I may catch up with the reviews before the next episode airs! But before we can get to Super Samurai we’ve still got the rest of season one and three specials to get through. First up we’ve got a good old fashioned Rangers at odds with each other episode. This time it’s Kevin and Antonio who aren’t getting on all that well. There’s even a new zord to contain with. Can Kevin learn to accept Antonio as a Samurai? How many more zords can they possibly suddenly find in this show? Will this be the last review I use this gimmick of starting with three questions? For the answers to these questions and more read on!

You wanna know what the best way to start an episode of Power Rangers is? Heck I don’t need to tell you because you already know. Yes that’s right, it’s time for some annoying child actors! Christ these two make Young Jayden and Young Antonio look like Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen. So why are we boring forced to endure these children? Well there’s a new Nighlok in town and he’s out stealing the favourite toys of kids. He’s taken annoying child #1's soccer ball and he’s taken annoying child #2’s truck and that truck was his favourite. I know this as the child delivers the line about it with as much skill as Eddie the Eagle. I do feel the disgust shown at the Nighlok leaving his slime behind is unfair. We’ve all been there and it’s a part of growing up and I think it’s unfair to make people feel bad for a natural process.

At the Shiba House Antonio introduces the Rangers to the Clawzord, a zord that was battle damaged years ago and hidden by Ji. Antonio is dedicated to fixing the new zord and everyone’s impressed. Except Kevin, who sees Antonio as a computer nerd rather than a Samurai. No one’s happy about Kevin’s outburst but this is an issue he needs to get over. Now I love Kevin but his attitude here really disappoints me. Antonio has proved himself in two episodes now, what more do you want Kev? Antonio won’t let Kevin get him down; being a Samurai is what’s in your heart and that’s a lesson Kevin needs to learn. Jayden entrusts Antonio with the task of getting Kevin to realise Antonio is the right man for the job. Well that’s the premise of this episode set up.

Post credits and we’re with Xandred and Dayu. Xandred’s in a bad mood as usual. He’s looking for Octoroo who is apparently off planning some scheme that will finally see them escape their imprisonment down in the Sanzu River. Now I’m not a pessimist usually but I don’t have high hopes for whatever Octoroo comes up with. Apparently Octoroo is the one who’s behind the plot to steal kid’s favourite toys with the help of the Monster of the week Antberry. I’ve yet to see them take an Xbox or a PlayStation so I’m not sure how effective this plan is.

It's night time at Shiba House and Antonio is up to something. He’s placing cameras all over the dojo so he can spy on Kevin and learn what it means to be a Samurai Kevin-style. Elsewhere Deker is still injured following his encounter with Xandred a few episodes back. Dayu’s gone to find and begins to wonder why Deker saved her from the Rangers and ponders whether he does remember her. That’s quite a tease. Just what does she mean? We’ll have to wait to find out as we’re back with Antonio. The eager Gold Ranger watches Kevin undertake his daily routine of training and reading a guide book to Samurai life (always handy). The question is, will Antonio be able to match Kevin’s dedication? It’s time for us to catch up with Bulk and Spike who are getting involved this week’s plot by having their favourite panda stolen.

The following day and the shocking realisation of Sam the Panda’s kidnap has left Bulk and Spike distraught. Elsewhere, Antonio has stepped up his studying of Kevin’s Samurai lifestyle by following him. Which is probably for the best as Kevin’s about to run into a whole heap of trouble. Looks like Kevin truly is a master of the Samurai arts and has been fully aware of Antonio’s surveillance. What a guy. Kevin is still doubting Antonio’s dedication to being a Samurai and despite Antonio’s best efforts to convince him things aren’t getting any better between the two Rangers. Hopefully they can sort through these issues quickly because they’ve stumbled upon Octoroo and Antberry’s pile of pilfered goods. The bastards are only going to cut all the toys up with a special axe made from Sanzu River bedrock! Do these beasts have no conscience? Luckily for the kids, Kevin and Antonio are there to save the day. Unluckily they can’t call for back up as the signal is being blocked. Damn technology! I do wonder if these are the two best Rangers to deal with this problem, as it shows poor judgement to actually come out of hiding when an evil villain tells you to. Guess what happens when they do what Octoroo tells them to? That’s right they get shot at with a big ball of energy. Idiots. It’s time to suit up and take on some Nighloks. Unfortunately Antberry is throwing his goo around which is quite frankly sick. That’s not what it’s for. Kevin and Antonio are blasted away by Octoroo and he sends the Moogers to finish them off. That means that Antberry is now free to destroy the toys and Xandred will be released it’s all over! If only there was some sort of plot device to slow them down. Aha looks like Antberry’s axe has been blunted by his slime. He’s a very dirty boy.

Dayu’s music is a bit off today according to Xandred. Deems himself a music critic now eh? Well I hope he’s better at that job than he is at being the season villain. The useless jackass. Time for a bit of a flashback between Dayu and Deker. She’s questioning him on why he insists on battling the Red Ranger. Apparently he’s compelled to seek out the ultimate duel and remembers nothing of a time where he wasn’t looking for a fight. That boy’s got an unhealthy fixation on his sword. Dayu asks if anything else is important to him and he says no. Something’s gone on there if you ask me.

The rest of the Rangers begin to worry about Antonio and Kevin when they realise Kevin isn’t sticking to schedule, which is very unlike him. Kevin and Antonio aren’t in the best shape and poor Antonio even has his arm in a sling. Kevin wants them to split up and he tells Antonio to hide. We all know he can’t do that, he’s a true hero and this is something Kevin is finally learning. The two finally begin to bond as they both reveal their true samurai souls. Back at Shiba House the Rangers decide it’s time to look for the missing pair after Kevin is more than a minute late back from his morning run. You can set your watch by this guy. Antonio and Kevin are about to go back into battle with Antberry. They’re prepared for his goo based attack this time as they’re tying their weapons to their hands so they won’t slip out in all that slime. Just in time as well, as that axe is as sharp as it’s ever gonna be. Octoroo orders Antberry to destroy the coolest toy there- a plastic yellow bike. Yeah you really haven’t stolen the kids’ favourite toys; I’ve yet to see a single copy of Call of Duty (that’s a slam to all those crap parents who buy kids games that aren’t suitable for them in yo face!). Luckily Antonio and Kevin have saved the day and sent that axe flying down the well. Antberry is trying his best to slime our boys but it’s not doing him any good this time. The rest of the Rangers have found them and the whole team unite to battle the Nighlok. Octoroo makes his exit like the gutless coward he is and the six Rangers make light work of Antberry. That’s the first form taken care of and we all know what that means…

Mega Mode. Megazord. Combination with the Octozord. You know the drill. A bit of the old ice breath followed up by a samurai strike is more than enough to take down this Nighlok. That just leaves us with one last loose end to tie up. What to do with all those stolen toys. As they discuss what to do Kevin finally accepts Antonio as a Samurai and I am so very proud of the Blue Ranger right now. What a guy. Jayden thinks its best they return the items anonymously as they don’t want to draw attention to themselves. Because wearing brightly coloured spandex and stomping around in giant robot doesn’t get you any attention. It’s good that everyone gets their stuff back. Even if it does mean enduring another scene with those terrible child actors. Sam the Panda is returned to Bulk and Spike and both are very happy to see him again and that’s the best place to end!

Next time: Team Spirit

Pictures taken from the Samurai Power Rangers Gateway

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