With Mighty Morphin Power Rangers returning to Angel Grove and moving ahead in the timeline with some new faces and the White Ranger, Go Go Power Rangers moves just past the Green Ranger Saga. The original team is back after the events of “Shattered Grid” with a reset reality. Do they remember this epic, world-shattering battle? And what else has changed upon their return?
Go Go Power Rangers #21 opens with a new look at a seminal moment in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #25. Tommy and Kim go out on a date full of teenage anxiety that make any long-time Power Rangers fan giddy with excitement. When this happened the first time around, Tommy was killed by Lord Drakkon. This time, it’s a decidedly different ending, one that made me let out an audible squee.
As exciting as this scene is, there’s an unmistakable feeling of foreboding throughout it. Since we know that Tommy once met his end in this alley, I found myself carefully examining every panel, searching for the other shoe that would drop and ruin this fun. Colorist Raul Angulo creates a nice blend of the lively with Tommy and Kim and the ominous with the shadows looming around them in this dark alley.
This isn’t the only change that’s happened for the Power Rangers. They’ve got some new zords and Tommy’s powers are dwindling. This creates a schism in the team as Tommy can’t keep up with the others. While they’re all friends, their status as Power Rangers creates an incredibly strong bond. What happens if Tommy loses his powers? Will that bond be severed?
This is where writers Ryan Parrott and Sina Grace excel. They weave in this heartfelt, personal drama in a comic with giant robots and a huge crab monster. Although they’re sitting next to each other in the cafeteria, they could not be farther apart when Zordon calls everyone but Tommy. You can feel how much this is weighing Tommy down, especially since he doesn’t seem to have anyone else aside from this group.
What’s interesting is how Tommy has accepted this fate. He had a good time as a Power Ranger and those adventures changed his life forever. The others have a harder time with this. It’s like they can’t fathom a loss of this magnitude. This makes for an interesting dynamic as they’re still somewhat distracted by their responsibilities as Power Rangers.
The team chats about this during a fight with some Putties. I love how letterer Ed Dukeshire intersperses the cries of attacks like “Kiyah!” into the dialogue in explosive balloons. The characters take a quick breath to lunge or stab at an enemy before carrying on with their conversation.
Artist Francesco Mortarino strikes a great blend between the all-out action of the Power Rangers in costume and in zords and the personal moments when they’re in their civilian clothes. The former is just as bombastic as ever with some jaw-dropping, intense sequences with the Thunder Megazord and some fast Putty action. The latter is just as riveting, but for different reasons. Tommy stands out with an introspective look. He’s clearly grappling with his next steps and how they’ll affect his friendships. Mortarino says so much with a single glance.
This issue kicks off the Go Go Power Rangers tie-in to “Necessary Evil,” the next big event for this franchise. It certainly leaves off with a great cliffhanger and I’m eager to see where it goes next. The bulk of this chapter was spent resetting the status quo which works as a perfect level set for where the series will flow.