#2480: Ranger Slayer

RANGER SLAYER

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

Though they were a smash success on TV, Power Rangers and comics didn’t have the strongest start.  Attempts were made to start some sort of on-going in the show’s hey-day, but nothing really took off, and eventually things just got dropped.  However, a renewed interest in the MMPR-incarnation of the show allowed Boom Studios to launch a comics-based revival in 2016, which ultimately expanded into its own full-fledged continuity.  One of the bigger stories to come out of it was “Shattered Grid”, an alternate universe story featuring an evil Tommy Oliver as its primary antagonist Lord Drakkon.  Serving Drakkon was a brainwashed and crazy Kimberly Ann Hart, now under the monicker of Ranger Slayer.  Hasbro is starting to delve into the comics a little with their toyline, including Ranger Slayer, who I’ll be looking at today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Ranger Slayer is the final figure in Series 5 of Hasbro’s Lightning Collection.  Following Lord Drakkon’s release in Series 3, she’s our second Boom Studios-inspired figure.  The figure stands just shy of 6 inches tall and she has 30 points of articulation.  Ranger Slayer is sporting an all-new sculpt, and even gets a slightly tweaked articulation scheme, most notably on the ankles, which are a slightly more compact design than the standard boots we’ve been seeing on other Rangers in this line.  The articulation’s great in concept, but perhaps a little iffy in execution, as on my figure, her feet tend to fall off at the ankle during posing a lot.  This also makes her not exceedingly stable on her feet, so she falls down a lot.  I’m not a huge fan of this.  In contrast to Magna Defender and his permanently attached cape, Ranger Slayer’s cape is totally free floating, and doesn’t actually attach to the figure.  Ultimately, it works out okay, but it does mean it falls off a lot, which I’m again not the biggest fan of.  At the very least having it peg into her back would have helped.  The final issue with my figure is one that isn’t a line-wide one, but is an annoying one nevertheless.  It seems the head on my figure wasn’t quite properly molded, resulting in the socket for the neck joint not actually clicking into place.  It just sort of wedges on there, and never all that securely.  That, coupled with the cape and the feet, really makes posing her a pain.  Moving past all of that, I will say that the figure has a good *looking* sculpt, and I particularly like the way the cape has been sculpted so dynamically.  Her paint work is decent, but probably the weakest of my Series 5 set.  There’s a few spots of noticeably missing paint, and some sloppy edges, especially on the legs.  Ranger Slayer includes her Bow of Darkness, Blade Blaster, a stock of three arrows, a shooting arrow effects piece, and two sets of hands (gripping and fist/flat combo).  It’s too bad she didn’t also get an unmasked head, especially given that Drakkon got one, but at least she doesn’t feel like she comes up too light.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I haven’t really followed the comics from Boom, but I have been aware of some of the broad strokes elements, which included Drakkon and Ranger Slayer, both of whom have some pretty nifty designs going for them.  I missed out on Drakkon’s initial release, but I definitely didn’t want to miss this one (or any of this series, really).  Ultimately, this is a figure I had pretty high expectations for, and unfortunately, especially in the case of my personal copy, I definitely feel a little bit let down.  She’s not a bad figure, and she still does have an impressive design, but she’s just not quite as playable as I’d like.  Still, I wouldn’t mind seeing Hasbro go back to the comics well again for things such as the Ranger Sentries.  That’d be pretty cool.

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.

#2479: Time Force Red Ranger

TIME FORCE RED RANGER

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

My relationship with Power Rangers is a little bit turbulent.  While I recall the tail-end of the original run of MMPR, it wasn’t until Zeo that I jumped into the merchandising aspect of things.  Then Turbo came along and kind of killed any real interest I had, before I got thoroughly hooked by In Space.  Its follow-up Lost Galaxy was fine, but not my favorite, and Lightspeed Rescue has really always left me a little bit bored.  My last true hurrah with the franchise was Time Force, after which I pretty much tapped out (but then again, so did Saban…at least for a bit).  Time Force is finally making its entrance into The Lightning Collection, with its Red Ranger, Wes Collins, who I’ll be taking a look at today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Time Force Red is part of Series 5 of Hasbro’s Lightning Collection, and is both this assortment’s requisite Red Ranger and our first Time Force Ranger.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and has 34 points of articulation.  Surprisingly, Time Force Red is an all-new sculpt.  Given how Galaxy Red was handled, I was definitely expecting this guy to be fairly re-use heavy.  Obviously, I’m sure most of these parts will end up used again for the the other three male Time Force Rangers, but it’s nice to see them actually go to the trouble of mixing things up a bit with some new parts.  I actually like how these parts turned out a little bit more well put together than some of the earlier parts.  It’s definitely a slightly sleeker sculpt than the MMPR parts, which definitely suits the design aesthetic of Time Force in general.  If I have one complaint about the sculpt, it’s that the helmet seems a touch wide, but it’s possible my memories of the old figures are playing tricks on my eyes with that one.  It’s certainly not a *bad* sculpt, so I’m hard-pressed to really complain.  His paint work is pretty clean, and is probably the best in this particular assortment, at least as far as my copies are concerned.  It definitely works well with the more crisp and clean nature of the design, as I think paint errors would have been more of an issue here.  Time Force Red is packed with his Chrono Blaster, a pair of Chrono Sabers, an effects piece, two pairs of hands (gripping and a fist/thumbs-up combo), and an unmasked Wes Collins head.  The sabers can combine as in the show, resulting in a slight compromise to the handles when they’re separate.  Still, it’s a cool gimmick.  The thumbs-up hand is one the better alternate hands, and the unmasked Wes head is another strong likeness.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Time Force still ranks pretty highly for me in terms of Power Rangers shows, and while Wes isn’t necessarily my favorite member of the team, I’m still glad to be getting our first taste of the team.  He’s a pretty solid figure, and I really dig all of the new parts they’ve given him.  I look forward to getting the rest of the team to go with him!

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.

#2478: Mighty Morphin’ Blue Ranger

MIGHTY MORPHIN’ BLUE RANGER

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

Continuing on yesterday’s Lightning Collection theme, today we’re jumping just a little bit back in Rangers history, with a Mighty Morphin’ era figure.  Hasbro’s been slowly weaving the inaugural team into the Lightning Collection line-up, and the latest to join them is Billy Cranston, the Blue Ranger, notable for being the only member of the MMPR team to stay with the show for its whole run, before being retired from active Ranger duty during the events of Zeo.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Mighty Morphin’ Blue is part of the fifth series of Lightning Collection figures, and is the MMPR offering for this particular set.  The figure stands 6 1/4 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  Billy is largely built out of the same bank of parts as the other male MMPR Rangers, which is fairly sensible, and also fairly expected.  It also means he’s a pretty straight-forward figure in terms of what he does.  The new helmet’s a nice enough piece, though as with all of the MMPR figures, I think I do prefer the Figuarts one. Something about the proportions on this one just seems a little off.  Of course, it’s still got all the important Blue-specific elements, so it’s still very identifiable as Billy’s helmet.  As with Red and Black, Billy gets a slightly tweaked belt, with the proper belt buckle, which continues to be a really cool, and not immediately expected element.  Billy’s paint work is pretty straight forward stuff; if you know general Hasbro paint, you know how this one goes.  There’s minimal slop or bleed over on my sample, so that’s certainly good.  For me, the part where this figure really shines is the accessory selection.  He gets an unmasked head (with a pretty solid David Yost likeness; it’s easily the best of the MMPR likenesses), two pairs of hands (in gripping and fists), his power lance in separated and fully extended form, and a blue lightning effect.  The unmasked head is definitely a lot of fun, but I was also really happy to get the fully extended Power Lance, given its absence from the Figuarts release.  Now, between the two, I have the full accessory complement.  Yay!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While I generally haven’t felt the need to pick up the MMPR cast in the Lightning Collection style, thanks to already having the Figuarts and still being quite happy with those, Billy is by far my favorite member of the team, and just one of my favorite Rangers in general.  Given the extra unmasked portrait and the extended lance, this one was pretty easy sell for me.  Not gonna lie, he’s making it harder for me to stick to the my plans to skip MMPR, because I do really like this figure.  I think I’ll be able to manage holding out on the others, though.  Whatever the case, this guy’s pretty sweet.

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

#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.

#2347: In Space Psycho Blue Ranger

IN SPACE PSYCHO BLUE RANGER

POWER RANGERS: THE LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

Hasbro’s collector’s toy lines seem to be really getting into the exclusives game across the board.  Though it’s relatively new, having only been running for a little under a year, The Lightning Collection has had its own handful, including not one, but two different exclusives for Gamestop (with a third on the way later this year).  Goldar was their first, and he got a lot of promotion, but by contrast, their second exclusive, Psycho Blue, pretty much just showed up one day.  And here he is now!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Psycho Blue is, as noted above, a Gamestop exclusive piece of Power Rangers: The Lightning Collection.  He started hitting in small quantities back in November of last year, but appears to have really hit in full force just after the new year.  He’s either the first or the second of the Psycho Rangers from Hasbro, depending on how distribution in your area worked out.  Red was shown off first, and he’s the one I got first, so I’m counting Blue as number two. The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  It’s not really surprising, but Blue is a total re-use of Red’s sculpt.  The costumes in the show were the same, so it’s a fairly sensible re-use, and one that Bandai did too when they released them.  It was a strong sculpt the first time I looked at it, and it’s still a strong sculpt here.  I do wish the range of motion was better on those shoulders, but that’s still my only complaint.  I’ll be content to buy this at least twice more for Black and Silver.  The figure is differentiated by his paint, which, unsurprisingly, swaps out the the red accents of the last one for blue.  I find myself preferring the blue overall, and its application seems a little cleaner on my figure.  Psycho Blue gets the same two sets of hands as Red, plus his Psycho Axe (the one new piece included here), and the White Ranger‘s effect piece, but in yellow this time.  I appreciate that they actually did give him one additional piece compared to Red, even if it’s just a re-used one.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I didn’t find Blue in his initial shipments last year.  My first find was after the new year, and at the time Gamestop was trying to get $29.99 for him, which I was definitely not paying.  Fortunately, I came across him at another location a few weeks later, and he was now marked at a far more reasonable $18.99, at which point I quite happily picked him up.  There’s not much new here, but that doesn’t mean he’s not a great toy.  Honestly, I like him even more than Red, and I’m looking forward to the rest of the team.

#2317: Lost Galaxy Red Ranger & In Space Psycho Red Ranger

LOST GALAXY RED RANGER & IN SPACE PSYCHO RED RANGER

POWER RANGERS: THE LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

Following Power Rangers move from one overall narrative from Mighty Morphin’ into In Space, to the more one and done, self-contained approach starting with Lost Galaxy, the show still had the Super Sentai counterparts’ yearly team-ups with their predecessors for the prior year.  That meant that, in the midst of establishing a new universe for Lost Galaxy, they also were bringing back the last of the wider universe they’d wrapped up the prior year.  Alongside the returning heroic Space Rangers, we also saw the return of In Space‘s resident evil Rangers, the Psycho Rangers, who found new adversaries in the Galaxy Rangers.  Hasbro is paying homage to that in their latest two-pack, pairing Psycho Red off against Lost Galaxy‘s own Red Ranger.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

The Red Galaxy Ranger and Psycho Ranger are the second two-pack in the Lightning Collection line-up, hitting shelves about a month or two after the Green and Putty set I looked at yesterday.  They also starting hitting right around the same time as GameStop’s exclusive Psycho Blur figure, giving the Psychos a bit of jump start.

RED GALAXY RANGER

We got Lost Galaxy‘s sixth ranger in the second assortment of the main line, so getting the Red Ranger in rather quick succession isn’t much of a surprise.  It also introduces the Galaxy Ranger-specific tooling, clearly opening the door for the rest of the team.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  For the most part, he’s using the core Ranger parts, with his only truly unique parts being his helmet and belt, something we should all get comfortable with as Hasbro fills in more of the more basic-looking Ranger teams.  Both new pieces make for a decent match for the design from the show, and match pretty well with the already sculpted base body parts.  There’s not much to write about beyond that; he’s a pretty straight-forward, no frills design.  The paint work is respectable, but again follows that same basic model of the sculpt, being pretty straight-forward.  There’s a little but of fuzz on the edges of the changes from white to red, but other than that, things look pretty solid.  The Red Ranger includes an alternate unmasked Leo head (with a pretty solid likeness), two pairs of hands (in gripping and a fist/flat combo), the Quasar Saber in full-sized and compact modes, and a flame effect for the full-scale Saber.

RED PSYCHO RANGER

Evil Power Rangers aren’t an uncommon element for the franchise, but the Psycho Rangers are probably the most prolific, with ten television appearances under their belt, making them the natural choice for first Evil Rangers to get toy coverage.  Bandai was supposed to do a full set in their Legacy line, but ended up not completing them, so Hasbro’s giving it a shot.   Their starting with Psycho Red, who’s a fairly sensible starting point.    The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  Psycho Red is an all-new sculpt, though I would imagine that a number of these parts are shared with Blue.  I can’t say for sure, because I’m not paying GameStop’s mark-up on that one, so it’s totally conjecture.  How dare I?  It’s a pretty nice sculpt, all things considered, and there’s a lot more going on with this sculpt than with Galaxy Red.  The poseability isn’t quite as free range as I’d like, especially on those shoulders, but for the most part it turned out very well.  Psycho Red’s paintwork is pretty solid.  Again, there’s a little more going on than with Galaxy Red, making him the slightly more visually interesting appearance.  Application is pretty clean for the most part.  There are some slightly sloppy points, but it’s nice looking overall.  Psycho Red is packed with his Psycho sword, and two sets of hands (one pair gripping, one pair fist/lightning effect).

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Lost Galaxy is right as I started to fall out of Power Rangers.  I had a few of the original toys, and I love me some Magna Defender, but I don’t have any major connection to Leo.  He’s fine, but ultimately nothing much to write home about.  Psycho Red, being from In Space, my personal favorite incarnation, is right up my alley.  He’s got a few small issues, but is otherwise really cool, and the definite star of this set.  I look forward to getting the rest of this team, as well as some proper Space Rangers to fight them.

I picked these two up from my friends All Time Toys, and they’re still available here.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay Store.

#2316: Fighting Spirit Green Ranger & Putty Patrol

FIGHTING SPIRIT GREEN RANGER & PUTTY

POWER RANGERS: LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

At the beginning of 2019, Hasbro took over the Power Rangers brand, and got right to work producing their own line of 6-inch scale figures on par with their Marvel Legends and Star Wars: The Black Series lines.  They’ve been working to bolster their numbers within the line through any means necessary.  We’ve gotten three standard assortments, augmented by two three store-exclusive figures, an SDCC two-pack, and two wide-release double packs.  I’m looking at the first of those wide-release packs, Fighting Spirit Green Ranger and the Putty Patrol, today!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

The Green Ranger and the Putty were the first Lightning Collection two-pack to hit shelves, initially showing up (in a small capacity, at least) in the late summer of last year.  They started hitting more in full force just before the end of last year.  Both figures are, of course, based on the Mighty Morphin’ incarnation of the show.

FIGHTING SPIRIT GREEN RANGER

Tommy Oliver’s other MMPR Ranger incarnation served as the backbone of the first standard assortment of the line, so I guess it’s appropriate that this one would anchor the two-packs.  This figure is officially dubbed the “Fighting Spirit Green Ranger” on the package, as he’s based on the Power Rangers: Dino Thunder episode “Fighting Spirit,” which see’s Tommy facing down three of his prior Ranger identities.  While the White and Red designs would go unchanged, the Green Ranger costume had some minor tweaks (which the fanbase was *so* forgiving of, of course…), and this guy reflects those. The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  I’ve actually looked at most of this figure previously, when it was used for the Dragonshield Black Ranger, though this figure was *technically* released first.  Whatever the case, the two share all but their heads and belts with each other.  It’s sensible enough, given the similarities of the base costume designs, as well as the fact that the Dragonshield is cannonically the same piece between them anyway.  The new helmet is a solid recreation of Tommy’s green helmet, matching well stylistically with the other MMPR Rangers we’ve gotten so far from this line.  Sculpturally, the only thing that sets this guy apart from a proper MMPR Green is the belt, which has his dagger sheathed on the right hip, rather than the left.  Big change-up, I know.  The paintwork is where most of the changes between the two designs crop up, with the most prominent change being detailing the helmet’s crest in silver rather than leaving it green like on the original piece.  As much as it may be sacrilege, I don’t hate the extra detailing there; it adds a nice little pop to the helmet.  Beyond that, he’s got a couple smaller changes.  The belt buckle is silver, like the other five rangers, rather than his unique gold, and the sheath for the knife is white instead of black, again matching the holsters of the core five.  If you want to get really picky, the green’s a slightly more saturated shade as well, which can be seen in the comparison between the Figuarts and this guy at the end of the review.  The Green Ranger is just as well accessorized as any of the solo-packed figures, with an unmasked head (borrowed from the White Ranger), four hands, his dagger, his sword, and an effects piece for the sword.

PUTTY

As I discussed in my reviews of Zedd and Goldar, the Rangers villains don’t tend to get quite as much toy love from the Japanese side, and by extension seem to miss out on the best of the toys.  This was also true of the franchise’s original army builder, the Putty Patrol, who were a conspicuous absence from the Figuarts stuff.  Bandai’s American side did at least give them a little more coverage, but they always felt a little more phoned in than the Rangers themselves.  Fortunately, Hasbro seems committed to not phoning in the villains for their ownership of the line, and the Putty is finally joining Zedd and Goldar.  As with most toys of them, this Putty is sporting the more basic Season 1 appearance, from before Lord Zedd retooled them into his own force.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  The construction on this figure is actually largely shared with that of the core Ranger body.  For the most part, that’s pretty reasonable; they were all similarly build guys in spandex, so it’s not like there’s a *whole* lot different you can do.  That said, he does end up sharing his boots with the Rangers, which isn’t strictly speaking accurate, as they should sit lower and be less ridged for a proper set of Putty boots.  It’s quite minor, though.  He does get a new head, lower arms, and belt, though, which sure do help to sell the Putty-ness of the figure.  The head and hands both spot quite a nice selection of texture details which give him that real world feel.  The paint on the Putty is fairly monochromatic; they were just shades of grey on the show, and they remain shades of grey here.  It’s more or less accurate, although I suppose there are some spots where they could stand to have dialed up the differences in shades a little bit.  It’s really not bad, though, and the monochromatic nature does help those red eyes to really pop.  The putty is packed with hands in both standard hand configurations, as well as a blade/club combo, which gives you some options if you opt to army built.  He also includes an effects piece, which he borrows from the White Ranger.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I already had the Figuarts Green Ranger, so my Green Ranger in this scale was covered, meaning I didn’t *need* this set.  Of course, I like the Putty, and I’ve wanted a few of those for a while, which did leave me mighty conflicted on this set.  With the Green Ranger *technically* being a different version of the suit, it did make things a little easier, so once I was able to take a look at one in person, it wasn’t exactly a hard sell.  Ultimately, I think I still prefer my Figuarts Green overall, but this one’s still a lot of fun, and the Putty is definitely a cool figure that I hope Hasbro makes more of, because boy do I want to army build.

I picked up this pair from my friends All Time Toys.  If you’re looking for other cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay Store.

#2263: Dragonshield Black Ranger

DRAGON SHIELD BLACK RANGER

POWER RANGERS: THE LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers is no stranger to toy coverage, and they’ve had action figures in all shapes and sizes.  For the purposes of Hasbro’s Lightning Collection, the Mighty Morphin’ characters have had similar coverage in a similar style in the form of the Legacy Collection and Figuarts, making the Morphin’ characters an interesting proposition for the line, should Hasbro want to avoid making die hards double dip on the characters too soon.  They’re doing a respectable job of it so far, mixing them in one per assortment, with a few exclusive offerings to bridge the gap of releases.  These exclusives have all followed something of a common theme: the Dragon Shield, the distinctive armor worn by the Green Ranger.  There are a few instances of the shield being passed to other Rangers, so the Red Ranger got his version in a SDCC two-pack, and now the Black Ranger is getting his due courtesy of a Walgreens exclusive.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Dragon Shield Black Ranger is the first Walgreens-exclusive for The Lightning Collection.  Given Hasbro’s current relationship with Walgreens, it seems unlikely that it will be the last.  The figure is based on Zack’s time wearing the Dragon Shield from the episode “An Oyster Stew”.  It’s notable because this concept is one of the ones introduced by the “Zyu2” footage, which was the additional suit footage commissioned exclusively for Mighty Morphin’, and not present in the original Zyuranger series.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has  34 points of articulation.  Construction-wise, he shares a good deal of his parts with both the Red and Green Rangers, sensible given how close the designs all are.  It follows the established style of the Lightning Collection so far, being ever so slightly bulkier than the Figuarts stuff, but generally more relalistic than anything Bandai America put out.  Zack gets a new helmet and, rather surprisingly, a new belt.  The helmet is as nice a recreation of the show design as any of the helmets so far from the line.  The belt is a real shock, because it’s definitely an area where they could have just gone with a painted emblem to differentiate the rangers, but they instead have sculpted in the proper emblem.  That’s actually pretty impressive.  The paintwork on the figure is about par for the course.  It gets all the basics done, and generally looks pretty solid on my figure.  Zack is packed with his Power Blaster, Power Axe, an extra set of hands, a blast effect, and an unmasked head, which sports a pretty decent likeness of Walter Jones, though it’s perhaps not as spot on as some of the modern rangers.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve been mostly avoiding the main Morphin‘ Rangers from this line, since I’ve already got the Figuarts line-up, so I was initially planning to skip this one.  However, I swung by Walgreens while looking for the Clone Wars Obi-Wan and saw this guy and he proved too hard to resist.  It helps that he’s not just the standard Black Ranger, so I don’t feel quite as bad about double-dipping.  This is a pretty solid release, and a pretty smart choice not just for an exclusive, but also for Zack’s first inclusion in the line, since it’s more likely to be picked up even by those that have Zack in another form.

#2182: Beast Morphers Gold Ranger

BEAST MORPHERS GOLD RANGER

POWER RANGERS: THE LIGHTNING COLLECTION (HASBRO)

So, the thing about Power Rangers is that the sixth rangers are always the coolest part of any given season of the show.  The other thing about Power Rangers is that the term “sixth rangers” refers to any of the additional rangers added after the start of the season…which means it might refer to the fourth or fifth ranger, in actuality.  Case in point?  Today’s “sixth” ranger, the Beast Morphers Gold Ranger!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Beast Morphers Gold Ranger is part of the second series of Power Rangers: The Lightning Collection, one of two Beast Morphers in the line-up, as well as one of two Sixth Rangers in the line-up.  He’s also the most currently relevant figure in the set, being very recently introduced in the show and all.  The figure stands 6 inches tall and he has 34 points of articulation.  He’s sporting another all-new sculpt, which appears to be fairly faithful to the show.  I myself must admit to not having watched the show myself (I didn’t really keep up with things post Time Force), but he looks fairly accurate from what I’ve pulled up online.   The design is, in my opinion, one of the strongest of this particular iteration, and to my eye calls out a lot of similarities to Kamen Rider.  Similarities to Kamen Rider are never a bad thing, so that works for me. I’m not the biggest fan of the boots, but that’s just me being picky, I suppose.  The construction on the figure is mostly pretty solid, with just one overlay piece for his shoulder harness; it’s free-floating, which is better for the figure’s posability, so kudos to Hasbro for leaving it un-affixed.  The paintwork on this guy decent for the most part, though not completely without its issues.  The coverage on his visor is a bit inconsistent (and this was the better option of the two figures I had to chose from).  The other paintwork isn’t that bad, though, so the overall appearance is passable.  The Gold Ranger is packed with an unhelmeted Nate Silva head, his striker morpher in blaster mode, his striker saber, an effect piece for it, and two pairs of hands.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The thing about this Gold Ranger is that he’s not the one I wanted.  Like, I mean him no offense, but my favorite sixth ranger is the original Gold Ranger, you know, the one from Zeo.  That one was an SDCC-exclusive this year, and I therefore didn’t get it.  This one was announced shortly after, and prior to seeing the pictures, I had a brief glimmer of hope that he might be a quickly turned around re-issue.  Then this guy showed up instead.  And no, he’s not technically what I wanted, but that’s admittedly not his fault, and it doesn’t stop him from being a good figure either.

I grabbed the Gold Ranger from All Time Toys.  If your looking for other toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.