Zack helping Angela out with some kids gets interrupted by the Peckster attacking Angel Grove.
Last time on Power Rangers: Rita sent down a two-headed monster, inspired by the women’s self-defense class Jason and Tommy were teaching.
As part of some event, there are a bunch of kids in the Gym and Juice Bar (I really suspect at this point in the show’s popularity there was some kind of competition to get to be on an episode). Dressed up as a magician, Zack opens his act by juggling. Bulk and Skull come over, the former claiming he can juggle as well. But of course he can’t, matters not helped by him having a Twinkie in his mouth.
Zack jumps over the table to prevent the duo from crashing into him, instead they crash into each other. Checking with the kids, Zack then makes the duo ‘disappear’ by pulling out some snakes that are clearly rubber at a second glance. Having only taken a first one, the pair freak out and flee to the kids’ amusement. Well, Bulk flees… Skull is clinging to him.
The kids are reminded by Zack to think smart rather than rely on brawn. Angela is impressed so Zack ‘conjures’ up some flowers, which she accepts and even gives thanks by giving him a kiss on the cheek. The kids react with a bunch of ‘oooing’. Zack’s a bit gobsmacked as well.
Having arrived just in time to see that “effusive display of affection” the other four Rangers wander over to both sincerely and teasingly give their commentary to their teammate. Up in the moon fortress, Rita wants to show the Rangers what a ‘real’ peck on the cheek is like. Not going to lie, that’s a fairly flimsy tie-in of the battle and domestic plots and I’ve pretty much gone along with all of Rita’s other ‘inspirations’ for the monsters.
Kimberly wants to go to the mall where Tommy is waiting for her. Um, what. Is he at a café of some kind? A music store? A pizza place? An ice-cream parlor? Like, where in the mall is Tommy. This is the era before cell phones; how will they find him? The other three opt to go along, but Zack wants to stick around… mostly to spend more time with Angela although he tries to backtrack that it’s for the kids. Interestingly, while Jason’s backpack is red the other three backpacks are all in the ‘blue’ family.
Finster is making the model for the Peckster and Rita wants this plan to work. Apparently taking a shortcut to the mall, the four are at a playground when a Putty Patrol attacks them. A weirder rock song than usual plays over the fight scene.
Angela and Zack are talking at the counter. She’s surprised and impressed by how well he gets along with kids. When Zack claims he hates to brag, Ernie has a brief reaction in response. Angela’s surprisingly shy effort to ask Zack a question gets interrupted when she and Ernie spot a news update: the Peckster is attacking Angel Grove.
Apparently whole skyscrapers are collapsing into rumble as a result of the monster’s attacks. Um, is there a death toll? Casualties aren’t mentioned at all in the news report… did everybody manage to safely evacuate or to prevent panic the news isn’t admitting they don’t know how many people are hurt/killed? The kids are blasé about the situation since they’re genre savvy enough to know that the Power Rangers will save the day.
Zack offers to do some more magic tricks to keep the kids calm. He then tricks Bulk into making him disappear (really, he snuck off to the locker room) by effectively saying “I am a goon” and telling him that saying “Zack” will bring him back.
Bulk and Skull do a happy dance while Zack gets in contact with Zordon. He’s alerted that the others are busy fighting Putties (wait, still? That’s a lot of Putties although they are unmorphed). Morphing, Zack arrives in an alley where he must single-handedly take on a group of Putties.
The Peckster dives down to take on Zack. Rita is pleased and thinks taking out one Ranger will make her life easier. Getting out the Power Axe, Zack continues to struggle against the monster. So I don’t know why the Peckster retreated if he (it?) was winning. Zack wants to find the others but Zordon points out that Zack can’t stay away long from the youth center without people noticing so he must teleport away. Oh good, at least Zordon has learned the lesson from “Lions and Blizzards”.
Having finally achieved victory over the Putties, Jason states, “And another one bites the dust.”
I am a little amused by the idea of Jason listening to Queen. Zordon contacts them and they teleport to the Command Center where he and Alpha use the viewing globe to show them the “dreaded Peckster”. Trini points out Zack’s absence and Zordon states he’s needed first at the youth center. Kimberly brings up Tommy, leading Zordon to remind her that he needs to “conserve his powers” but that Tommy will be contacted if necessary. Morphing, the quartet go to Angel Grove. A group of Putties shows up to battle them.
Zack’s No Birdbrain
By now the kids, particularly a black boy in a yellow tee, want Bulk and Skull to bring back Zack but they don’t want to. When Bulk tries to flirt with Angela, she responds, “I’d rather give mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to a hippo in a mud bath.”
Timing his reappearance perfectly, Zack is in the booth when Bulk pulls back the curtain. The two are left befuddled by this. Ernie calls everybody over for the latest “special report” on the Power Rangers. Zack and Angela do their best to reassure the kids. Mikey- the same kid as before- is sure the superheroes will come up with an awesome idea. Zack looks over at a black balloon and then the black ball Mikey gave him, clearly getting an idea.
The other four are still battling the Peckster and Putties, unable to gain the upper hand in the battle. They’ve been felled when Zack shows up with a bunch of balloons, quickly flanked by his teammates as seen above. And of course even the balloons are color-coded.
Peckster pops four of them with his beck but then the fifth one turns out to be Mikey’s ball, trapping his beak. When Zack blasts the monster, Rita uses a new quote to super-size him. Jason calls upon the Zords and the five get in their cockpits. They promptly form the Megazord.
To defend themselves, they get out… the Mammoth Shield. Okay, where did that come from? I don’t recall that ever being used before. Well, in any case, it’s effective… at least until the Peckster uses its wings to create powerful gusts that blow away the Mammoth Shield so it can use its mouth darts on the Megazord.
Zack rallies the team and the Cranial Laser is activated. Um, again: where did that come from? Well, it does manage to weaken the Peckster. Jason calls upon the Power Sword which lands the final blow, destroying the monster.
Angela, Ernie, and the kids are thrilled to be watching the Rangers’ victory on the news. Recounting the story, Mikey compares Zack to the Black Ranger. This makes Angela realize that he’s not present. Bulk and Skull are sulking at a table. When Skull starts listing off Zack’s good qualities when Bulk asks what Angela sees in that “goody good” the larger teen shoves the other teen’s head into the bowl of popcorn.
Rita is blaming her minions for the failure and claiming she’s “been way too nice” towards them.
Later that day, Zack shows up at the Gym and Juice Bar in a nice suit, expecting a nice date with Angela. It’s clearly the same day since the others are in the same outfits as before as seen in the below screen-cap. This includes the fact that Billy hasn’t worn overalls for the sixth time this season. Even if Billy doesn’t wear overalls in any of the future episodes, he’ll still have worn them for seventy-eight percent of the season. That’s just over three-quarters of the time; this is why the count exists.
Zack elaborates on his plan for their date, which sounds pretty expensive for a high-schooler. Then Angela shows up with the bunch of kids, as she wanted a second chaperone for taking them to the cartoon festival. She’s in a new outfit as well, so maybe she wanted to look nice for him too, even if not to the extent Zack did. Zack manages to fib he didn’t expect a date with her and goes along the situation. Though he does face-palm when he learns it’s a lengthy retrospective of Woody Woodpecker, given the day’s events.
Angela is definitely thawing towards Zack. In this episode she saw how he’s not all ego and interacts well with children as well as willing to volunteer for community events. She hasn’t been around for all the other activities he and his teammates have done. In any case, she’s starting to see he’s not just a braggart. And while she didn’t really get to see it in action, Zack proved this episode that while no Billy in the brains department (then again, who is?) that he’s capable of using brains over brawn.
The others were side-lined, primarily reacting to the budding romance in non-combat scenes, and Tommy only mentioned. This was very much a Zack-centric episode.
Peckster was a pretty powerful monster; he/it gave the Rangers a tough battle and they even ended up using weapons that were never seen before in order to get the upper hand in the Megazord battle. I have to wonder if they’re new capabilities thanks to Alpha 5 or if they just were never needed before.
Next time on Power Rangers: Kimberly goes up against Skull in a game show.