#2477: Zeo Gold Ranger

ZEO GOLD RANGER

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

ZEEEEEEEEOOOOOO GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLD!!!!!  OH YEAH!!! …ya know?

I began my last Zeo Gold Ranger review with a note that I don’t review many Power Rangers here, a statement that has become patently untrue, so I guess I can’t very fairly repeat it.  However, if I *didn’t* review many Power Rangers around here, this guy would still probably make the cut.  Why is that?  Because he’s the Zeo Gold Ranger, and the Zeo Gold Ranger is the best damn Power Ranger there is.  And I will fight you on that.  Okay, I probably won’t.  It’s okay if you don’t agree.  I’m gonna be sad, and that means you made me sad on my birthday, but I guess we’ll all learn to live with it.  I can learn to forgive.  Where was I?  Yes, the Gold Ranger review.   Excellent.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Zeo Gold is part of Series 5 of Hasbro’s Power Rangers: The Lightning Collection, following Zeo Blue’s debuting the show’s coverage in Series 4.  But, as I noted in the review of that figure, Zeo Gold was technically the debut figure, thanks to an early release last summer as part of an SDCC two-pack last year.  At their core the two releases are the same, but there are some differences when it comes to accessories, which I’ll touch on when I get to that section of the review.  This actually marks the third Gold Ranger in the line, after the Beast Morphers and Dino Charge versions, for those keeping track of such things.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  A number of Zeo Gold’s parts are shared with Zeo Blue, but he still gets a new set of arms, lower legs, head, and armor, which keeps him looking *fairly* unique when compared to Blue.  It’s a solid selection of the parts for him, and does a really nice job of capturing the suit as seen in the show.  The torso armor is a little more floaty than I might have liked, especially when compared to the White and Green Rangers.  It’s not terrible, and the floating is preferably to being totally fixed when it comes to posability.  It’s a really nicely sculpted piece, though, and it and the helmet are definitely the coolest parts here.  On the helmet, I especially like the raised kanji element, as the Bandai figures usually didn’t have quite as nicely pronounced.  It looks really sharp here.  The paint work is overall pretty solid on this guy.  The helmet’s definitely the best, with the sharpness again really coming though, but I also really like the accenting on the chest piece.  There’s a touch of inconsistent coverage on the upper sections of the knees, but beyond that, it’s pretty good.  Now, for the change-ups from the SDCC release, the accessories.  The biggest shift is the unmasked head, because while the SDCC figure was Jason, this release is Trey of Trifecta, and gets the corresponding unmasked head.  It’s just the one Trey head, and it definitely would have been cool to get all three triplets, but only one of them actually wore the suit at a time, so I guess this is fine.  I totally don’t need three of him.  That would be silly.  It’s worth noting that the Jason head that went with Jason in the SDCC set actually got packed with the standard Mighty Morphin’ Red in Series 3, meaning it’s pretty easy to make him Jason on your own.  No matter who you prefer to have in the suit, Zeo Gold gets two sets of hands in gripping and fists, as well as a yellow effects piece (both of which were the same on the SDCC version), and his Staff of Gold, which is in a slightly different configuration than the two versions included in the SDCC set.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As noted in the intro, Zeo Gold’s my favorite Ranger, so when be was initially released in the SDCC set, I was a little bummed, but figured a single-release was inevitable.  It was quite a wait (with two other Gold Rangers taunting me in the meantime), but he finally showed up, and boy was I excited to see him in the line-up, and he was the first figure I tore into once I got the set in-hand.  I was happy with the Legacy Collection Gold when he was released, but he’s not held up, and I was definitely glad for this upgrade.  He’s really awesome, and I’m so happy to have him.  ZEO GOLD!

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for Lightning Collection, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2449: Zeo Blue Ranger

ZEO BLUE RANGER

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

When it originally started over in the States, Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers was adapting footage from Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger.  That was all well and good for the first season, since there was a whole season of equivalent footage to use.  However, when Season 2 came along, Saban opted not to adapt the follow-up, Dairanger, quite as directly, largely due to wanting to keep the Rangers with a consistent look for US audiences.  By the next season, Kakuranger, they came up with a story relevant reason for the new looks (being tied to the Alien Rangers, who replaced the de-aged Rangers).  When it came time for the next follow-up, they had thoroughly exhausted any and all Zyuranger footage, and even burned through the extra footage they’d commissioned, so for their fourth season, they gave up the ghost and decided to fully revamp the show for Power Rangers Zeo, which adapted the 19th Super Sentai series, Chouriki Sentai Ohranger.  Zeo is finally making its way into Hasbro’s Lightning Collection line proper, kicking things off with Rocky Desantos, the Blue Zeo Ranger!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Zeo Blue is one of the four figures in Series 4 of The Lightning Collection.  Technically, he’s the second Zeo figure in the line, if you count the SDCC Zeo Gold from last year, but he’s the first at standard retail (a proper retail release of the Gold Ranger will be joining him in Series 5).  He’s also our second Blue Ranger in the line.  I’m always a fan of getting more Blue Rangers!  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  A surprising amount of this figure’s sculpt is new, if you can believe it.  I mean, I’m certain that, like, 90% of it’s going to get re-used for the other two male Zeo Rangers, but given how few new parts there were on Galaxy Red.  I was expecting to see a touch more re-use here.  As it stands, it looks like it’s just the upper arms, hands, and feet are shared with prior figures.  Everything else is new, and looks pretty spot-on to the show design.  As usual, the helmet’s really where the best work shows up, but I must admit, I was quite impressed by how ornate the detailing on the gold sections of the costume was.  It really gives the sculpt that extra pop, that I kinda felt was missing from, say, Galaxy Red. The paintwork on my Zeo Blue is pretty decent, but as with prior entries in this line, I had to check against a few different versions to check for the best paint.  As a whole, though, it does look like this assortment has less issues than prior releases.  Zeo Blue is packed with two sets of hands (in fists and gripping), his pod sword (with an energy effect), laser pistol, and an unmasked Rocky head.  While I’d love to see a little more variety in the weapon configurations, such as a collapsed version of the pod sword, or even a combined advanced Zeo Laser, this is a decent basic layout.  I’m still definitely a fan of getting the unmasked heads, and Rocky’s is sporting a pretty decent likeness as well.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve discussed previously how In Space is “my Power Rangers”, but Zeo‘s kind of the one that actually got me into it, and was the show I had the most toys from.  Zeo Blue was actually my second Power Ranger, and I at the time still believed it was Billy under the helmet, before then erroneously believing it was Jason, because I knew it was the “former Red Ranger” and my mind hadn’t quite wrapped its head around Rocky as a character.  I was actually pretty happy to see him show up as the first regular retail Zeo release, so he was a day one figure for me.  I’m very happy with the final product, and look forward to getting the rest of the team in this style, hopefully sooner than later.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for Lightning Collection, or other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#1555: Gold Ranger

GOLD RANGER

POWER RANGERS: LEGACY (BANDAI)

I don’t review many Power Rangers figures on this site.  And when I do, they’re pretty much always from the Mighty Morphin’ incarnation of the show.  It’s amusing, because, while I certainly have an appreciation for MMPR, since it’s the original and all, I only caught it fleetingly in its original run.  I’ve touched on this somewhat in past reviews. Power Rangers in Space is actually the first Rangers show I got actively invested in, but the first incarnation I owned any toys from was Zeo, Mighty Morphin’s follow-up series.  My favorite Ranger design of all-time is definitely Zeo’s sixth member, the Gold Ranger, who I’ll be taking a look at today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Gold Ranger was released in Series 4 of Bandai’s Power Rangers: Legacy line.  He’s one of the three Zeo-based figures in this series, alongside the Green and Yellow Rangers (the other two figures are the Blue and Red Rangers from Dino Thunder).  The figure stands 7 inches tall and he has 32 points of articulation.  That’s slightly less posability than the Red Space Ranger, but the missing joints were mostly redundant on that figure and ended up adding a bit of extra work to pose him so that none of his extremities were oddly twisted.  With this figure, he’s definitely less contorted looking right out of the box.  That being said, I do feel it’s important to note that this guy does *not* have mid-forearm cut joints like the last figure.  I gave one of them a small twist on my figure and the glue holding his wrist in place came undone, which was a pain to fix.  The Gold Ranger’s sculpt uses the same basic starting point as the Red Space Ranger, so he has the same exaggerated, superhero build the Bandai America likes to give to their Rangers, for better or for worse.  He also has the same wonky shoulders that I wasn’t super crazy about, but fortunately those shoulders are mostly covered by his chest plate, so the issue is lessened.  In general, the new armor additions really help this figure out, since they cover a lot of Bandai’s usual sins on these figures, and in general help to keep him looking far more in line with his onscreen counterpart.  The armor pieces also off Bandai the chance to add a little bit more intricate detailing to the figure, thus keeping him from being quite as simplistic and bland as some of their other sculpts.  I also quite like his head sculpt, which does a great job of capturing the show’s design, and manages not to look too small in comparison to the rest of the body.  The paint on the Gold Ranger is the source of some controversy.  The prototype and all promotional shots of the figure showed him with armor that was actually gold, matching up with the show depiction.  When he arrived on retail shelves, his armor was more of a orangey yellow, with only the slightest metallic twinge to it, which has upset a lot of fans.  I can understand the complaint, and I’d probably be happier with the figure if he were in the proper colors, but I don’t find myself all that upset with the final product.  As it stands, I think the color’s close enough to work, and his overall appearance hasn’t been altered all that much.  I suppose it might bug me more if I had the Green or White Rangers, both of whom have a different shade of gold, but just on his own, I think this guy looks fine.  As a sixth ranger figure, the Gold Ranger doesn’t include a piece of his team’s Megazord, but he does include his Staff of Gold, which is pretty cool.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This guy’s really the whole reason I got into the Legacy line in the first place.  I’ve wanted a Figuarts version of him since I got the Mighty Morphin’ team, but the odds of that getting made are kind of slim at this point.  So, when this guy was shown off, I was pretty pumped.  It took him a little while to get here, but I can’t begin to describe the excitement when I found him.  He’s got his flaws, but I’m overall very happy with this figure!