1-29: Island of Illusion, Part 2

With Quagmire’s help, the Rangers have to face their fears in order to escape.

Last time on Power Rangers: Rita sent the team to the Island of Illusion.

 

It’s a Clip Show

To overcome the magically enhanced self-doubts the Rangers experience, they have to remember their past actions.  This means clips from earlier episodes- yay.

Poor Quagmire has to keep teleporting over to them to reiterate what they have to do to overcome Rita’s spell.  I suspect he’s tolerant because he knows they’re being enchanted and because they are still-developing teenagers opposed to more level-headed adults.  The Rangers do express gratitude towards him.  Plus, as he says, any foe of Rita’s is a friend of his.

Inner Fears

Recalling his victorious solo fight with the Nasty Knight in “Happy Birthday Zack”, he regains solidness.  Kimberly is enchanted next, seeing Bulk and Skull dressed as angels and doing kind deeds.  Believing Rita is capable of such power, she despairs.

29AngelicSkull&Bulk

… To be fair, Rita is the one inducing these visions so Kimberly isn’t wrong.  Anyway, at Tommy’s encouragement Kimberly recalls defeating the toad monster in “Power Ranger Punks” which adds an amusing element to her scenario.  Baboo’s potion made Kim and Billy act like punks and now she’s rightfully concerned about what other personality changes a potion can cause.

Tommy’s tricked into believing he’s surrounded by Putties… but in reality, some of those ‘Putties’ are actually his fellow Rangers.  Outnumbered and morpher-less, Tommy believes his defeat is inevitable.  Considering his capture in “Wheel of Misfortune”, this is another justified fear.  But Quagmire tells Tommy to think “strong thoughts” and so he remembers his single-handed unmorphed victory over a Putty Patrol in “Life’s a Masquerade”.

Meanwhile, Alpha 5 under Zordon’s supervision has been trying to regain contact with the Rangers but to no avail.  The poor robot gets zapped on the butt with electricity several times.  Fretful, Trini departs from the group.  Her fear that she’ll be next is amplified by the fact that, well, she is the next Ranger being affected.  She remembers watching from afar that Billy is alone up on a bluff about to be cornered by Putties.  With Quagmire’s aid, she recalls what happened next in “High Five”: Trini overcame her fear to save her friend and teammate.

Feeling he’s useless if his scientific knowledge can’t help, Billy starts to fade.  But he recalls that he isn’t completely useless on the battlefield when he remembers his victory over Madam Woe in “Peace, Love, and Woe”.

Rita amplifies the spell for Jason.  Goldar taunts Jason about being a “real leader” and the Red Ranger is tricked into believing that the others have disappeared.  Showing up, Quagmire realizes that there’s some “nasty magic” going on and therefore reassures Jason about his power.

Jason remembers defeating King Sphinx in “A Pressing Engagement” by not giving up.  Reunited, the six have a group hug while Rita is annoyed.  Since all six have overcome the self-doubt illusions, their communicators and Power Coins reappear on them.  It’s implied they never left and it was only part of the illusion that they thought they were gone.

Defeating the Monsters

Somehow Rita picks up the island to shake and throw it before blasting it but the seven manage to escape prior to its explosion.  The two Megazords have been restored, so they form the Megadragonzord to defeat Mutitis.  To take on Lokar, they create the Ultrazord.  But Lokar vanishes before they can defeat him.

29ReassuringZack

The episode then cuts to the dance-off at the Gym and Juice Bar.  Bulk and Skull have entered, but it’s more comedic than proper dancing.  They get a very poor scoring from the judges: zero, one, and minus three.  Zack, to the others’ bafflement, is still nervous about his odds.  However, he’s a great dancer especially with Quagmire as the DJ.

… Yeah, I don’t really get it either.  But I’m glad he didn’t get destroyed along with the island, even if we’ll probably never see him again.  Zack gets a perfect score from the judges and wins, the others going over to congratulate him.

Conclusion

For a clip show, this was pretty good.  Zack remains the most insecure Ranger, concerned over his self-worth even if he often hides it under a veneer of confidence.  Kimberly is intimidated by the extent of control Rita can wield over others after experiencing it herself as well as seeing how Tommy changed while under her power.  Trini isn’t completely over her fear of heights and is afraid about harm coming to her teammates at Rita’s (or her goons’) hands.

Tommy quite possibly has such a strict training regimen because he wants to ensure he won’t let down the other Rangers after what he did while under Rita’s spell.  He knows he’s a good warrior, but is afraid that won’t be enough.  In contrast, Billy is aware he’s the weakest link in terms of physical ability on the team yet also the brainiest member.  But if his intelligence can’t help his teammates, what use is he?  While he’s not in overalls for the final scene, Billy is in the cotton overalls from last time for the majority of this episode.

Jason feels that as leader, the others are his responsibility.  He doesn’t want to let them down, particularly given the high stakes.  I appreciate how Rita just amplified the self-doubts and fears the Rangers already had within them.  But by working together, the Rangers can overcome any obstacle Rita puts in their way- although in this case, Quagmire lend a hand.  I wonder how he ended up on the Island of Illusion: presumably by angering Rita, but some backstory would have been nice.

 

Next time on Power Rangers: Jason’s cousin Jeremy helps out the Rangers against Rita’s scheme.

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