There’s a lot to connect us with the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers starting from 1993 forward. With all that said, how many series really were there? Well, let’s dig into the history of Power Rangers and see how many iterations there truly were!
Listen, we could go into Super Sentai but even Saban Entertainment didn’t really dig into that to bring it over here, so we’re just going to focus on the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. I know, I know, the purists are shook — but we’re simply talking about the shows that took over in the 90’s. I’ll only be handling the original series and essentially the bulk of the series in the 90’s because, let’s be honest, there’s a LOT of seasons and series. As of 2019, there will be 26 seasons of Power Rangers and I can only keep up so much! Thankfully, the channel Legendary Power Rangers is a great little resource to study up on all of the Power Rangers you could ever ask for! Let’s get to those Rangers, shall we?
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: 1993-1995
So, this is when the show truly took off. When people think of the Power Rangers, this is what they truly think of. It starts the story of these silly kids getting altogether, apparently having the best gymnastics and taekwondo training ever! It’s cool though, because Zordon handles this with the help of Alpha-5 to keep these kids all sorted out. The show consisted quite evenly of major battles with Rita Repulsa and then slice-of-life back home scenarios. Consistently battling the two bumbling bullies whenever they weren’t taking out Rita’s goons, they showed they never had to use actual violence with other people and rather, they talked things through and let karmic forces handle those boogers. This is when we had to deal with the difference between the Green Ranger and then the White Ranger and it was just.. a lot. Thankfully, as you saw up there, Time Life put together a compilation DVD. Something I’m still giggling at. This is also the season where Zordon often reminded Tommy to use his flute, you know, to summon his Zord… like every single episode it felt like. This super BA guy was being told to go toodly-doodly-toot on a flute to get his big dinosaur robot to show up. Too good.
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (The Movie): 1995
This movie was such an intense summer blockbuster in 1995 and I, definitely, was part of that. I mean, even if you weren’t in to the Power Rangers, you couldn’t deny that killer soundtrack. Did anything truly crazy happen in the movie that changed the show? Not really. Power Rangers lost their power, took on others until they got their old ones back. It was fun and fanciful and did I mention that soundtrack?!
Mighty Morphin Alien Rangers: Partial Special Series – 1997
I’m still sitting here a bit confused by this little half-season, but I’m tickled by its existence. The typical Power Rangers that we’re used shrinked back to their younger selves but with their current mindsets and abilities. Zordon is panicking and wants to restore the kids back to their teenage selves and, I mean, do you blame him? Having a special underground lair full of eleven year olds isn’t a good look even if you ARE from another reality. A bunch of water aliens end up helping the kids sort out their business and of course, it all works out but it was really dang confusing. Definitely the weakest of the series, it sometimes felt like just the writers saying “How do we put kids in the show to make kids happy?” and then with a crooning Go-Go Alien Raaaangers.. it was born. It was so minor of a blip that the whole season took place in just the month of February of 1997.
Power Rangers Zeo: 1996
Let’s be real here for a moment, this is when I kind of started wondering how much longer Power Rangers could continue. The original series actors were obviously not going to be able to pass off as young folks much longer, right? So, it just made sense that Power Rangers Zeo started bringing in new Rangers and they take on an almost mentorship role to these new kids. Of course, we can’t get rid of Tommy and while Billy decided it was best to peace out than fade away, Jason was like “Yo, I’m still alright for a minute whenever you guys need backup.” but Tommy kinda held it altogether. So, we had Zeo Rangers now and while they looked like more of a Daft Punk fever dream, kids seemed to still attach to the series. Same kinda villains, same kind of shenanigans and a bit more exploration into the world around them. All in all, you could tell it was kinda the beginning of the end of the series when it came to the original folks.
Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie: 1997
Seriously, I don’t even know anymore. Honestly, this just felt like the whole season of (then upcoming) Turbo condensed into a movie. Even the writers admitted they just really wanted to get the concept of the new team out there for folks. The kid shows up. The show is about the kid being a kid and not a teenager and how the old guard passes off their Zordy batons. Everyone has a sandwich and walks home. Can we just get these crazy kooky kids in space already!?
Power Rangers Turbo: 1997
I don’t care if you have no recollection of the Turbo series, but make sure you check the video out for that insane theme song. It was so beyond the Power Rangers typical theme song hybrids they did that I always felt like I was smacked in the face by a bass guitar. Production REALLY amped up in the Turbo days and let me tell you, you started to actually believe they were filming the scenes instead of cutting and pasting them into new footage. However, this is also when a young kid became the new Blue Ranger and, let me tell you, I wasn’t quite sure how to take that. I mean, when they’re shifting into their Power Rangers form, the Blue Ranger magically grows by a foot and gets a man body? Oh, and did I mention Tommy is the Red Ranger? I sometimes wonder if they just prayed Jason David Frank would never age because they NEEDED him for the series. To be fair, he was the most interesting of the lot and definitely found his footing here in Power Rangers Sabanland, you know? Alpha-5 gets a little troll friend and quickly dips the heck out but is replaced by Alpha-6 who is friggin’ obnoxious, Zordon seems concerned about wormholes (rightfully so, because he gets poofed) and things are never quite settled as the Rangers try to handle the fact they’ve got a 10 year old Ranger-pal. There’s real danger! Why is this kid here!?
Power Rangers in Space: 1998
Oh, thank God. We’re in space now. Zordon is gone and all his powers went bye-bye. Things got all twisted and weird and so now there are aliens from other planets who whine that they’re humans even if they’re from other planets. It’s so very emotional and I couldn’t even begin to tell you what is happening here. The one important thing is that they finally cut out that Alpha-6 New York accent nonsense. Now, he just sounds like a young squeaky woman and, well, that’s better than what went down in Turbo. So, now we have a new long-haired alien brooding fella who is running the show. Where is everyone else? Oh, they’re gone. Yeah, no more of those folks you once knew. But, wait.. what is the craziest part of this whole thing? The Teenage Mutant Freakin’ Ninja Turtles show up in this season. I’m not kidding. You don’t believe me? Here. You deal with this now.
Power Rangers Lost Galaxy: 1999
This was in the magical year of 1999, when they abandoned the peculiar Rangers in Space theme music and got a bit more settled into the superhero fantasy of it all. We’re talking Sword in the Stone levels of fantasy. Nobody you remembered from the early 90’s is there anymore and the suits, helmets and everything are so beyond. We’ve got a whole new cluster of twenty-year-old teenagers and while the stories get far more intricate, it seems to lose its original flavor for me. Maybe I just couldn’t get over losing the slow panning shots of Tommy doing tai-chi in his seashell necklace while Kimberly watches, mournfully, behind him. Lost Galaxy was definitely fun and it had quite a following for the younger kids who were growing up with the Power Rangers though. Where is Jason David Frank when you need him?
Well, there you have it. That’s all of the Power Rangers that aired during the 90’s. Now, not everyone followed the entire series up to now from episode to episode, surely, and we all have gaps in there. I know I stopped at Turbo for the most part when I was younger because who wants to see their favorite Power Rangers bail out? Heck, there’s now just too many names to remember! Power Rangers have become like Pokemon! However, the best time ever was sitting down for the original run of Power Rangers and getting pumped to see what those wacky kids would get up to. Those were the good ol’ days.