16-24: Blue Ranger, Twin Danger

Theo’s twin brother arrives while the team is dealing with the Spirit Rangers.

Last time on Power Rangers: The revived Phantom Beasts captured the three living Masters.

 

The Spirit Rangers

After the previously on segment, the camera cuts to the quintet getting up to confront the three newcomers.  The Phantom Beasts have mind-whammied the Masters, who move while chained to the wall, causing their ‘Ranger’ counterpart to do the same martial arts move.  Camille and Dai Shi watch on, pleased.

At Casey’s order, the quintet morphs with a momentary screen showing all their morphing sequences.  The two groups charge at each other.  Dom and Theo team up to take on the Black Bat.  RJ and Casey similarly pair off to take on the Cyan Shark.  Lily has to fight the Green Elephant alone.  Theo and the Black Bat end up fighting on a roof, but the former soon falls to crash into a gate while Lily doesn’t fare much better.

Casey continues to fight the Cyan Shark.  Dom and RJ have evidently paused for a breather or something.  When the Red Ranger gets hurt, his teammates rally to him.  The primary-colored trio list off the Master animals.  RJ dubs their foes the “Spirit Rangers”.

When the foes charge again, the primary-colored trio goes into Jungle Master mode.  Dom and Lily still struggle against the Green Elephant, who has a sonic kick ability.  I am impressed and want this to become a more standard superhero ability as it looks cool in addition to being effective.

Theo fights the Black Bat alone now.  Casey and RJ have teamed up again to fight the Cyan Shark near some vehicles.  RJ momentarily sees his father ‘through’ the visor to his confusion.  Somehow this breaks the spell on Master Finn.  Getting free, Master Finn forces his fellow Masters back to break the spell on them as well.  When the spell is broken on them, the Spirit Ranger vanishes.  The other bad guys are displeased by this turn of events.

Back in Ocean Bluff, the Rangers are baffled by this.  RJ states that he has an “idea” about what’s going on.  The show cuts to the team in the loft, RJ evidently having explained his theory.  Only he and Theo are in casual attire- I have to wonder why the others didn’t change as well.  Fran briefly shows up to hand over a note to Theo.  Its contents annoy Theo as he goes to make a call.

RJ has a plan to create a gizmo that will break the ‘waves’ causing the Spirit Rangers’ presence, but it is only a temporary measure as the Spirit Rangers will keep returning like a “bad rash” until the Masters have been rescued.  Theo is frustrated by the fact that his brother wants to visit, partially due to them being as different as “day and night” from one another.  Dom says he likes Theo’s brother already.

Dom, no, just no.  Theo clearly has some kind of issue with his brother and the implication that Dom is already preferring/taking the brother’s side over his teammate’s… is not nice.  I thought Theo and Dom had made amends over their differences back in “Dash for the Dagger”, but apparently Dom didn’t.  Okay then.

Polar Opposite Twins

Dai Shi, Camille, and Scorch are plotting in the cavern while Rin Shi pull the three Masters out of the space, presumably to be put in cells.

RJ and Theo speak briefly about how the gizmo works as they head towards the JKP… where Luan has been playing the guitar for the customers.  Theo is not pleased to see his identical twin.  Back in 2008, I wasn’t as aware of how the crew had set up things for how Aljin Abella had played both brothers but I can tell the ‘tricks’ better now.  It’s still a pretty good effort, though, particularly for a kids’ show.

Lily thinks them being twins is cool.  Luan is a bit snarky.  Fran likes Luan’s stories about his extreme sports.  Theo isn’t keen to spend time with his brother.

In the throne room, Dai Shi gets forceful with Scorch about reenergizing the Spirit Rangers.  Dyanmir shows up to assist in this endeavor.  Yeah, the spelling has changed for the monster between episodes.  That, or last episode’s subtitles were wrong (very possible).

The twins have gone into the kitchen.  Theo, now in his JKP uniform, has claimed he’s only been training Kung Fu and making pizzas, and the two of them end up squabbling.  Luan ends up needing to borrow one of Theo’s shirts when Theo accidentally gets some food on him (it does seem to have been a genuine accident) and heads up to do so.  Lily has been in the kitchen doorway long enough to overhear the gist of things.

Theo confesses to his jealousy about how popular, talented, and funny Luan is- and how often he had to hear about said traits from others.  Lily decides to take Theo grocery shopping to cheer him up, telling him to change clothes.

Luan comes back down first after changing, and gets dragged off by Lily.  When Theo comes down, bemused, Fran gives him some orders to fill out.  Theo is not okay with any of this.

Dom has taken the moped to a rundown part of Ocean Bluff.  Electric bolts run along the ground prior to the Spirit Rangers’ arrival.  Dom dodges them, but gets trapped in a boomerang disc thrown by Dynamir.  The discs seem to be reflective (and let the trapped person look out, it seems).  I suspect something about ‘mirror images’ was the intended allusion.

Over in the kitchen, Theo gets a call about Dom’s failure to deliver the pizza to his annoyance.  Fran jokingly suggests that Dom ate it.  At least, I hope she’s joking.

Out on a street, Lily tries to reassure ‘Theo’ about why he shouldn’t be jealous.  Luan fesses up to his identity.  Going by the blonde’s unconvincing ‘oops’ reaction, I suspect this was her plan all along to fix the brothers’ bond.  Luan is baffled by Theo being jealous of him, as Luan has always admired Theo’s ability to focus and study.  Lily does her best to be reassuring.

The sky darkens and there are electric bolts in the sky.  The duo gets confronted by the Spirit Rangers but then Dynamir teleports behind them to trap them in discs.

Not a Reflection

RJ and Casey find the moped and abandoned pizza box.  The gizmo beeps just before the Spirit Rangers show up.  Soon Casey morphs and goes into Jungle Master Mode.

In the kitchen, Theo puts on his Solar Morpher but Casey can’t tell him much about the situation.

RJ is fighting two of the Spirit Rangers, morphing midway in the fight.  The gizmo gets kicked out of his hand before he can use it, however.  The duo is struggling when an unmorphed Theo shows up in his Ranger uniform, just in time to witness his friends getting trapped in discs.  The monster is smug, believing that he’s trapped all five Rangers.

Theo darts to grab the gizmo.  His presence confuses Dynamir.  Theo realizes what mistake had been made and gets worried for his twin.  Dodging the Spirit Rangers’ attacks, Theo uses the gizmo.  This pins the Masters to the wall as the Spirit Rangers fade.  However, the gizmo is now emitting smoke as it was apparently a one-off effort.

Morphing, Theo states his catchphrase before taking on Dynamir, soon going into Jungle Master mode.  Luan gets free first as his twin fights the monster.  The other Rangers are freed when Dynamir gets blasted.  All four are demorphed even though RJ and Casey were morphed when trapped, interestingly enough.  An upset RJ goes to his discarded and broken gizmo.

Theo demorphs to Luan’s shock.  He goes to check on his civilian twin, who’s surprised that Theo’s a Power Ranger.  I wish there had been a call-back to Theo’s apparent childhood dream to be one.  Dynamir gets back up, leading Casey to tell the monster, “Breaking mirrors is bad luck… for you.”

Lily, Casey, and Dom all morph, the former pair going into Jungle Master mode.  I didn’t do the little jacket adjusting Dom did a few moments beforehand; it just came across as arrogant somehow, though maybe it’s just my anti-Dom bias.  Then again, I can’t recollect anybody adjusting their uniform or attire just prior to morphing.  The Jungle Master Megazord and Rhino Steel Zord in warrior mode are both formed.

24RJ&Twins

Theo, RJ, and Luan watch the battle.  Casey and Lily soon end up on the ground, an attack having undone their Megazord, but still morphed.  Dom tries to take on Dynamir, only to get barraged by energy boomerangs.  RJ and Theo team up to share the Wolf Pride Megazord with the Bat Spirit added.  On the one hand, this is fitting as both were mentored under Swoop.  On the other hand, how exactly can they still access the Bat Spirit?  Is it due to RJ, just like how he can access the Jaguar and Tiger on his own?  I’m confused.

The duo contributes to the battle, but Dom does the “Rhino Seal Super Blade” as the finishing attack, causing a sparkly explosion.  Luan is delighted by his brother’s heroics.

Up in the loft, the twins are spending a little more time together before Luan goes.  Wait, where and why exactly is Luan going?  Is there something time sensitive that he has to do?  It’s emphasizing that both guitar playing and martial arts take years of practice in order to excel.  In other words, the show stresses that different skills have equal value.  Affirming their pride in each other, the twins hug.

Dai Shi walks by the three bound Masters, unimpressed by the Phantom Beasts so far.  Camille follows him out.  It looks like Scorch might be disgruntled by this dismissal.  Yeah, I don’t think this alliance will last very long.

RJ is meditating in the darkened loft when Master Finn telepathically manages to get a brief message to him.  The brunet is grimly silent afterwards.  Okay, so Master Finn is capable of telepathy.  That doesn’t answer any of my questions about how it works or why the Pai Zhua Masters can do it.

Conclusion

This was a good episode.  Honestly, it’s rather rare for brothers to be contrasted as the popular versus studious ones.  It’s usually nerd versus jock, but Theo is clearly both (albeit an atypical jock, as his ‘sport’ is martial arts).  Furthermore, Luan has his own athletic interests.  And neither brother is ‘better’.  They’re just different and the show clearly states that’s okay.

RJ’s tech-savvy sort of saves the day, but either the gizmo cannot be fixed nor recreated or it has proven to be ineffective even as a short-term solution.  The episode isn’t terribly clear either way.

Fran is a glorified cameo here as a messenger and to gently mock the not-present Dom.  I don’t mind, given Dom’s less innocent teasing of Theo earlier in the episode.  It’s petty, but I don’t like how Dom deliberately poked at Theo’s sore spot.

Lily acted to have the twins reconnect, but I’m not sure how okay Theo would be with her telling Luan about his jealousy- particularly if he did believe that she thought Luan was him.  That can’t help his insecurities, to think his crush can’t tell the difference between him and his identical twin.  It’s only slightly illogical, given their very different personalities.

There’s a part of me curious about when the twins last saw each other, as that could give information about how long Theo was at the Pai Zhua Academy.  I didn’t get the sense that there are summer or winter breaks.

The Spirit Rangers do have a neat design, and their strength was showcased here.  However, it does seem whatever spell is being used on them is draining to the point that even the Phantom Beasts are reluctant to use it too often.  You know it’s serious if some of the villains don’t want to do something to their captives.

It’s hard to believe that I’m now three-fourths done with this season, with only eight episodes left before I move onto RPM.

 

Next time on Power Rangers: RJ finds a way to save his dad and the other Masters.

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