Sunday, April 17, 2016

Denji Sentai Megaranger First Impressions

After the Bioman first impressions, I told myself that I wouldn't start a new series until after I finished Bioman. However, I had a Megaranger itch to scratch and some time to kill. I checked out the first 9 eps of Megaranger and oh boy was I surprised.
The series opens up unsurprisingly in an arcade. Surprisingly, Megaranger is a fighting game in the arcade. We're shortly introduced to Kenta helping some kids who are being bullied and he challenges the bully to Megaranger. After he beats the bully, he is approached by a bunch of guys in suits because of his skill with the game. They take him to INET to and reveal that the game is actually a test used to recruit people to become Megarangers. After that we're introduced to Kenta's friends from a school club just as the enemy attacks.
The first outing for the Nezirezia Empire was incredible. The first two episodes felt like an end-game move you'd see for a finale. That was a great way to demonstrate just how dangerous they are right off the bat. They wiped INET's earth base off the map. This is one of the most competent first attacks for the villains that I've seen in Sentai. They are definitely some of the most upfront villains I've ever seen. In episode 5, they created a monster specifically to counter Galaxy Mega's sword and in episode 6, they essentially said "lets just nuke the city". I love their plans a lot and it makes the early episodes feel very tense. I absolutely love their designs. I love Dr. Hinelar's make-up. Its really effective and surprsingly detailed. He has this almost royal look to him. I really like the wire-frame look for Yugande's suit and the cape looks good on him. It sort of gives him the look of a digital knight. The black and green perfectly complement each other. I like the shade of blue for Suhiborena's outfit and it looks nice with the silver bits. The silver bits are nicely detailed.
I love Galaxy Mega's design. There is an absurd level of detail in this thing. Every time I look at it, I notice a detail that I didn't catch before. The sculpting is fantastic as well and all of the colors blend really well. I particularly like the big red M on the chest. Its got a really combination sequence. I love how the sword doubles as a lazer whip.
The Megaranger suits are nice to look at. They are simple and stream-lined. The white complements their colors rather well. Like the Timeranger belts, you can look at the Megaranger belts and instantly recognize which team they're from. I like that the design on their chests includes each of their colors. The first eight episodes introduced their individual powers really well. MegaRed can be programmed with lots of abilities. MegaBlack can use satellites to scan and search for things. MegaYellow can search and playback images. MegaPink can use her MegaCapture to scan for things.

The Megarangers are endearing and pretty nice characters overall. The first episode shows their skills with electronics rather well. The enemy's initaly attack fries an electronic lock and they manage to fix the lock with just the gadgets they have in their pockets. Episode 3 reemphasizes this when they run a computer program to figure out whats on Kenta's next test so he can study for it despite missing the class due to fighting Nezirezia. Kenta is a red I can really get behind. He is a nice guy overall and episode 3 shows that rather well. He fights a monster un-henshined to guard a room Shun is in while he saves a program that could help him realize his dreams. In the same episode Shun learned that his friends were more important and said he'd start his dream over from scratch after all his floppy disks got destroyed when he saved Kenta. Kouichiro seems cool and really wants to make sure his friends are taking being Megarangers seriously. The dude actually blamed himself for his friends falling into a trap in episode 4 because he thought he wasn't responsible enough to prevent it. Episode 5 isn't exactly a character episode for the Megaranger's themselves, its for the mentor Dr. Kubota. It shows just how much he cares for the team and believes in them. He even points out that Galaxy Mega was specifically designed to grow with the Megarangers when INET's board tried to automate it. Episode 6 was a nice episode for Miku. It basically shows her being responsible when she thinks someone caught her turning into MegaPink. It also showed just how kind she was as she helped the guy who tricked her into a date get over his shyness. Episode 7 was enjoyable and had a nice moment between Kouichiro and Chisato. Episode 8 we get a great episode for Kenta since he learns just how valuable working with his team is. It also gave us some backstory on Dr. Hinelar. Episode 9 was a great episode for Chisato. It shows that she and the others besides Kenta are a little too quick to judge based on appearances.
I absolutely love the theme song. Its pretty good at getting you pumped up for the show. The ending theme is rather nice and soothing while sort of capturing the high school vibe. I love just how much science and technology is a recurring theme. The show does so far has done a nice job exploring its uses and possible applications. It makes it world feel more natural and organic so its rather easy to get into for me. This is the second series since Timeranger to make me like the entire team before the 10 episode mark. Its very rare that a show pulls that off. I love Abaranger, Dekaranger, and Gekiranger's characters too but this pulled it off a bit faster than they did. This is definitely a series I'm looking forward to seeing more of.

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