Beast Morphers has a surprising comedic outing that makes consider the use of comedy in Power Rangers.
This Power Rangers Beast Morphers review contains spoilers.
Power Rangers Beast Morphers Episode 10
For a franchise that sometimes utilizes comedic side characters, Power Rangers doesn’t do overly comedic episodes as often as you think. This is assuming you don’t think EVERY episode of Power Rangers is hilarious by the sheer nature of its very concept, but if you’re reading this review you probably don’t chuckle at spandex wearing heroes or the hilarious amount of quick zooms in every episode of the show. Not that my co-worker laughed about those things as I watched an episode of Megaforce recently. Anyway, where was I?
Power Rangers and comedy. Since the very nature of the show can be seen as campy, Power Rangers doesn’t delve into overt comedy too often. It’ll do jokes for sure, but doing an out and out comedy is usually only done once or twice a season. It’s still an action adventure series and that means it can’t get too jokey too often.
From the very beginning of the franchise, Power Rangers has worried about making its main characters funny. Tony Oliver, one of the main creative forces behind the original MMPR, has famously described that making the Rangers the butt of jokes was quickly scrapped and that was given to Bulk and Skull. Mostly because Jason Narvy and Paul Schrier are comedic geniuses but also because it undercut the Rangers’ characters. The franchise has mostly stuck to that, outside the more comedic Ninja Storm.
That’s what makes ‘Thrills and Drills’ so interesting, because it’s a fairly funny episode that isn’t outright comedic. To be clear, it isn’t so bad it’s funny like some episodes of Super Megaforce. It has some genuinely hilarious jokes. The sight gag of Ravi at the dentist seeing the giant drill only for it to be a repairman? That’s gold! Everything Steel says made me chuckle and feel his naivety. The best exchange being with Nate.
“I won’t worry unless there’s something with eight legs.”
“Don’t worry bro, there’s no octopus’ here!”
Going for this comedic yet not full on comedy was the right move for your standard “dealing with fear” episode. If you did it without the comedy I probably would have taken points off the episode for not exploring the topic a bit more deeply. After all, fears are a very real thing for kids and to make it seem like you can get over them fairly quickly is a bit much. Adding the comedy in though makes me okay with it.
These aren’t big fears. This isn’t Billy with his huge fear of fish or Shane not wanting to let his brother down. These are little things. The kind of fears that can be dealt with by just believing “it’s all in your head.” The comedy compliments this nicely. The fear isn’t as big as you think it is. It’s actually a little silly to make the fears so big in your mind when they’re actually quite small.
I wish the series would actually lean more into the comedy. When it really went for those jokes it was pretty funny! The premise of Beast Morphers doesn’t exactly lend itself to a full on comedy episode but I’d love to see them try it. Now that Steel is in the mix it’d be great him get into some wild shenanigans with Ben and Betty. Those two are sadly underused and what they do get is so farcical it doesn’t really work. The broad physical gags (including getting goop tossed on them) aren’t working. If they were given the kind of witty writing that Steel’s had so far? I think fans would be warming up to them more.
The B plot of Roxy and Blaze trying to get the upgrade wasn’t all the engaging. They don’t seem to have a real drive outside of “wanting more power.” Villain motivations aren’t always the best in Power Rangers but it would really make the whole season more cohesive if they had a more engaging reason for going after the Rangers.
As it stands, this is a solid Beast Morphers outing that hints at some hidden strengths the series could tap into. The season may not be quite living up to the potential it had in the premiere but maybe it could switch gears. If it leaned more into the comedy it could stand out in the wider Power Rangers franchise. It doesn’t need to full on comedic like much of Ninja Storm but it could let all the characters be more funny to help make it’s lighter take on life lessons work better.