The wider Power Rangers universe is about to get entwined with BOOM! Studios’ Power Rangers comics in upcoming crossover event Shattered Grid. Don’t worry if you are far behind though because this article is here to tell you what exactly is going on in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.
Mighty Morphin broke on to the scene in January of last year, leaving the 90’s behind and blasting our heroes into a 21st century setting. They are still in Angel Grove but they have mobiles now, Bulk and Skull have a podcast and Trini wears athleisure.
Mighty Morphin is a very story driven comic. Using the pages instead of dated special effects and reused dubbed footage the comic strives very hard to be a bit more grown up. The multi coloured madness is toned down a lot and even though the heroes are still in their brightly coloured suits the world seems a little greyer. Much like its younger sister comic Go Go Power Rangers, our rangers here are racked with teen angst.
Just like in Go Go—this comic takes place later in the same apparent timeline—the cast is the original TV rangers, updated to the 2010’s. So Red Ranger is Jason Lee Scott, Blue is Billy Cranston, Pink is Kimberly Hart, Black is Zach Young and Yellow is Trini Kwan. We also have your favorite 90’s comedy antagonists Bulk and Skull who, as mentioned, have their own podcast and YouTube channel now. Unlike Go Go however the character that practically owns this comic as a whole is fan favorite, and most decorated ranger of all time, Tommy Oliver.
Tommy Oliver was the original sixth ranger. He has long hair, a slightly attractive surliness and has the privileged position of being the reformed bad boy. In the frankly awesome set of episodes that comprised Green With Evil (the original TV show at its very best) Tommy Oliver arrives in Angel Grove where Kimberly becomes crazily infatuated with him. Evil witch Rita kidnaps the new boy to help her destroy the power rangers by empowering Tommy as an evil ranger. He is far more powerful, far cooler and fights with a sword-flute. As this is a kid’s show he eventually becomes unbrainwashed, the kids teach him the meaning of friendship and he joins their side to become the coolest ranger of all time.
BOOM!’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers has real fun with him. With every action having an equal and opposite reaction Tommy, choosing the light side and joining the rangers means that surely, in some dimension or alternate reality there was a version where he didn’t. Mighty Morphin mines this seam of thought completely. An evil Tommy Oliver, who after being able to see through Rita’s mind spell chooses to stay with her and destroy the world. He becomes Lord Drakkon. Drakkon is a master strategist, strong, and has taken other Rangers power coins to be able to power up his sinister army.
His alternate dimension is chaotic and after Tommy and Billy are transported there after a fight with Black Dragon mecha, they see the chaos for themselves. A hideous, enslaved world where the people succumbed to Rita and Drakkon as they felt there was no better alternative. People live in fear and hide in the shadows. In fact people are not as passive as they seem, especially in Angel Grove where the now depowered leftover rangers are hiding out in the rubble with Bulk and Skull, scouting around for ways to take down Rita.
After a truly disorientating dispatching of Drakkon—which is so bizarre and trippy, that I can’t even spoil it if I wanted to. But anyway, in the aftermath of his apparent defeat, Billy and Tommy are returned to their earth. Tommy, who is already pretty angsty about his brainwashing and green-with-evil situation is now more angsty than ever, but basically unharmed. Billy is upset because his mum is being clingy since his “brush with death” (the normal people believe the two kids were trapped under a building destroyed by a monster for four days), but life moves on. Except Finster (Rita’s monster maker) appears to be unaccounted for.
In Angel Grove all seems fine. Trini even has to time a read few books about modern geniuses of our time— where they have sandwiched their new character into the list, with people we already know. So Trini reads about Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, Neil Gaiman and Grace Sterling. Grace is the CEO, creator, inventor and general cool person behind Promethea a city of inventors and science, which creates all sorts of solutions to power problems. Or at least on the surface that’s what they do. Grace has a little secret: in the 60’s, due to a moon-related incident, she was the Red Ranger (fighting the Green Psycho Ranger! Nice TV callback), and she isn’t happy with how it turned out. Turns out Zordon has some secrets inside that big old floating head of his.
Finster meanwhile has been making some very specialist monsters. They look like people, act like people, until he activates them and they go haywire. His very own Manchurian Candidate Monsters if you will. They have been popping up all over the place. However Rita reunites with Finster and activates the lot. Whilst we are lead to believe they are eventually all done with I have a feeling this chapter isn’t completely closed.
Promethea has captured it’s own Manchurian monster, which it seemed to be experimenting on. The rangers seemed a bit nervous of this development, as Grace not as awesome as she started out. She has secrets, her own handcrafted Zord and more importantly a prisoner chained up in her basement— evil Tommy Oliver himself, Lord Drakkon. Or at least she did, until the White Rangers sentient weapon Saba tries to fight him. Saba ended up decapitated, Drakkon absorbing the power to escape. So far we don’t know if Grace is on this.
As for where this going I am taking my cues from the title, Shattered Grid. I believe Grace Sterling and Promethea are messing with the Morphin grid (the thing referenced in the TV series that powers every ranger, and we already know is malleable due to Rita manipulating it to create Tommy’s powers). With Drakkon powered up, Rita getting stronger and Grace’s scientists playing with it it’s only a matter of time before it all goes horribly wrong.
It seems to be all setting up towards a major battle of wills. Are Zordon’s secrets going to drive the Rangers apart? Should we believe Grace? It all seems to be coming back to the moon, but why? Is this Psycho Ranger related? Is it all to do with Tommy and his angst? I have no idea yet but it’s building up to be a very interesting event. We’ll have to wait and see what unfolds in this but it definitely seems worth the ride so far.