When they are at their strongest, Power Rangers Finales gives the season a strong conclusion that ties up all the loose ends that the season has brought up in previous episodes and give us an epic finale battle between good and evil. The weakest season finales give us a lackluster finale battle and keeps large plot points unfinished.
In Part One of a Three Part Article, I shall be going through the Saban Era finales from MMPR To Wild Force.
Like most Zordon Era finales, Hogday Afternoon ends on a cliffhanger that has the Command Center blown up and the former rangers looking at awe thinking that Rita & Zedd have won . While this finale does end on a cliffhanger, it does succeed in tying up many loose ends. For one the quest for the Zeo Subcrystals concludes in this episode. We are also given us a new ranger in the form of Tanya who replaces Aisha on the team after Aisha comes to the conclusion that her knowledge of animals could help the wildlife in Africa. For me, this was a terrible way to give Aisha a sendoff. I mean we don’t even get to see Karan Ashley in a final scene but hey, at least she wasn’t sent off via stock footage. We also see a heartwarming farewell to the Alien Rangers who return to their home planet of Aquitar after the effects of the Orb Of Doom return the Earth to present time.
Good As Gold
While Zeo doesn’t end in a cliffhanger nor is it a proper finale, it does have some awesome fight scenes and does wrap up some plot lines. Fighting wise, we get two awesome fight scenes. The first is an epic fight between Rita & Zedd’s Tengas vs The Machine Empire’s Cogs which inevitably ends in a draw. The other epic fight in this episode is a rarity among this show which has the Zeo Rangers grow to giant size to fight a giant King Mondo and Cogs. Plot wise we do have some plot lines that do end with a conclusion. For one, Trey is combined back into one being after reclaiming his Gold Ranger powers from Jason. Also, the threat of the Machine Empire is halted after Rita & Zedd blow them up with a bomb in the form of a present. While this episode does conclude many things, it also introduces some new plot lines that go nowhere. For one, Bulk & Skull leave for France after receiving a job from a detective there which makes no sense considering that the next time we see them they are still in Angel Grove but back on the Junior Police Patrol for some reason. Another plot line that goes nowhere is a line said by Zedd pronouncing that “We’re Back” even though Rita & Zedd never attack the Earth again after this episode.
Chase Into Space
While Turbo is a season that has many faults, this finale does a real good job in having many epic fights and sows the seeds for next season. Battle wise we get an epic zord fight against an overpowered monster named Goldgoyle who succeeds in decimating all of the Turbo Rangers zords. The only problem I have with this fight is the way they destroy Goldgoyle which is just setting the Turbo R.A.M. on self-destruct into its mouth. After the fight, we learn that some unknown force has attack Eltar. Dimitria & The Blue Senturion decide to leave the Earth to assist in the battle. While Dimitria & Blue Senturion are leaving the Earth, Divatox (who has recently learned the location of the Power Chamber) prepares to attack the Power Chamber with a large army of Piranhatrons. Her army delivers an enormous blow on the Power Chamber and succeeds in destroying the Power Chamber for good. Before claiming victory, Divatox is given a message from Dark Specter and leaves for a conference that will be seen in the next season. After the destruction of their base and powers, the former Turbo Rangers decide to go into space to aide Zordon in the war on Eltar and uses a space shuttle from NASADA to accomplish this goal. However, not everyone is going as Justin decides to stay on Earth with his Dad.
Countdown To Destruction
Season: In Space
Countdown To Destruction does not only wrap up In Space, it was also originally going to be a series finale to Power Rangers as a whole which is apparent due to all the events that occur in this two part finale. The episode begins with Dark Specter commanding Astronema to gather all of his evil forces to attack the universe. After this we are shown multiple scene of past villains and their armies battling past allies including Rita & Zedd battling Trey Of Triforia, Divatox battling the Aquitian Ranger, and the Machine Empire battling Phantom Ranger & The Blue Senturion. Astronema is given the task of attacking the Earth and does so with large battalion of Velocifighters, Quantrons, & Piranhatrons (for some reason). The Space Ranger attempt to protect the Earth from this enormous invasion but fail and are forced to retreat. Meanwhile, Darkonda attempts to overthrow Dark Specter & Astronema with a planet destroying missile and succeeds in weakening Dark Specter. However, he fails in destroying Astronema after Dark Specter eats him before he is blown up into a million pieces. After Dark Specter is destroyed, Astronema claims the title as the Queen Of Evil and gives an ultimatum to the citizens of Angel Grove to give her the Space Rangers or she will destroy the planet. However, in a surprising and epic moment, the citizens of Angel Grove including Bulk, Skull, Prof.Phenomenus, & Adelle stand up against Astronema and aide the Space Rangers in the fight against the forces of evil. While this is all happening, Andros sneaks into the Dark Fortress and finally reunites with Zordon. However, all is not good in this reunion as Zordon requests that Andros destroys his energy tube which would release a wave of energy that could destroy the United Alliance Of Evil but would also destroy him. At first he is reluctant but after a battle with his brainwashed sister that severely injures her, he destroys the energy tube and destroys all the forces of evil in the universe (for now). Even Karone is purified and comes back to life thanks to some magic Karovian tears. For me, Countdown To Destruction is my favorite finale that shows the villains as a major universal threat, gives us awesome cameos of characters from the past, and shows us that the citizens of Angel Grove are just as brave as the heroes that protect them. However, I still do have a few problems with this episode. For one, I wish they did a little better with foreshadowing the events in previous episodes. Also, I kinda wish we saw more of the battle going in the universe but time restraints I guess.
Season: Lost Galaxy
Journey’s End is a perfect example on how to do a Power Rangers finale on the highest scale both battling and story wise. Story wise, this episode concludes Terra Venture’s search for a planet and does so with the finding of a familiar green planet. However, their plans of landing on the planet safely are prevented by Trakeena who has unwillingly fused with Deviot and has become even more evil and psychotic. Her first heinous deed after fusing with Deviot was to destroy Terra Venture’s engine which inevitably causes Terra Venture crash on a Moon. These events in turn causes the ship to be severely damage. The colony has no choice but to retreat but Trakeena is still on the prowl and attaches bombs to her Stingwingers to attack the fleeing colony and succeeds in destroying the Stratoforce & Centaurus Megazord. During these events, Villamax has a change of heart after a little girl shows her kindness and refuses to cause anymore harm to the colony. Trakeena doesn’t take this well and destroys Villamax who refuses to fight his student. After destroying Villamax, Trakeena plans on blasting the colony ships right out of the sky but is stopped by the Galaxy Rangers in the Astro Megaship. The Galaxy Rangers, in a last ditch effort sets the Astro Megaship on self-destruct and severely injures Trakeena. In a last ditch effort, Trakeena uses the cocoon her father made for her to mutate into an insectoid form. Trakeena’s final plan after mutating to green is to use the remnants of Terra Venture to crash into the colony who have succeeded in landing on their objective planet. However, she is stopped by Leo and later the rest of the Galaxy Rangers and is presumably destroyed from a blast from Leo’s Battlizer. After Trakeena is destroyed, it is revealed that the planet they have landed on is Mirinoi. After coming to this conclusion, the Galaxy Rangers decide to put the Quasar Sabers back into the stone from which they were pulled. This causes Maya’s tribe to be freed from the stone curse Furio put them under. After these events occur, Kendrix’s comes back to life for some unexplained reason and he Galaxy Rangers celebrate their victory. Journey’s End is definitely a finale that does a tremendous job at showing how threatening a villain can be if they have the proper resources. The only problem I have with this finale is the half-assed way they brought Kendrix back to life.
P.S Bulk & Prof.Phenomenus Make Another Appearance In The Last Two Episodes After Being Absent For Like 26 Episode 🙂
The Fate Of Lightspeed
Season: Lightspeed Rescue
The Fate Of Lightspeed, while not as epic as Journey’s End still delivers in a lot of superb action and storytelling. Queen Bansheera’s final plan has been revealed in this episode which is to use the power of an eclipse to open the gates to the Shadow World. To prevent the Lightspeed Rangers from meddling in her plans, her last surviving follower Jinxer activates a Batling card that was attached to the Lifeforce Megazord in the previous episode. An army of Batlings starts to attack the Aquabase and we are treated to another base destruction scene. Right as the Lightspeed Rangers are ready to retreat, an army of Batlings commandeers the Lifeforce Megazord and destroys the energy tube which leaves the Lightspeed Rangers, Ms. Fairweather, & Captain Mitchell stuck in the Aquabase (minus Ryan & Carter). Eventually the Lightspeed gang escape by using a submarine and just in time as the Queen Bansheera has opened up the gates to the Shadow World. Luckily the Lightspeed Rangers are able to throw Queen Bansheera into the tomb but not before grabbing Carter to bring with her. However, the ghost of Diabolico comes in to aide Carter and brings Queen Bansheera to the depths of the Shadow World and the episode ends with the Lightspeed Rangers helping with a fire without their powers. For me, this episode did a a lot on the action side which shows in the usage of Megazord suits and base destruction scene similar to that of the previous season. Story-wise Queen Bansheera’s plan is an interesting one (so good they recycle it a few years later) and they do a good job somewhat wrapping up the Joel & Ms. Fairweather story (even though it concludes further in next seasons teamup).
The End Of Time
Season: Time Force
While The End Of Time does copy a majority of its element from its sentai counterpart, it copies it in a good way due to having two strong writers adding in original elements. It is revealed in this episode that Frax is developing a strong robot capable of total destruction and the Time Force Rangers are advised to return to the future before the battle begins. They however refuse and decide to stay and fight. Meanwhile, Ransik sends out a search party to look for Frax and during Nadira’s search for Frax, she unwillingly helps a woman deliver a baby. This eventually starts her to thinking that humans are not the enemy. At the same time, Gluto has found Frax. Ransik strips him of the last of his humanity and orders him to attack the city with Doomtron. After the Time Ship arrives and the Time Force Rangers store the mutants inside to return to the future, the Time Force Rangers attempt to battle Doomtron but can’t due to the zords not being able to travel the year 2001 when the time holes are open in the sky. Wes comes up with a plan to use the Time Ship to battle Doomtron but this is only a trick to trap the Time Force Rangers in the Time Ship so that they could go back to their time. Wes & Eric eventually teamup together after Wes gives a speech about being a Power Ranger and whatnot. Back in the Year 3000, the Time Force Rangers are about to get their memories erased but decide not to after the guilt of Wes dying for them lie to heavy on their hearts. They use the Time Force Megazord Jet Mode to travel back to the year 2001 to aide Wes in defeating Doomtron which they do by destroying its Trizirium Crystal. After the destruction of Doomtron and Frax, Ransik decides to take on the Time Force Rangers himself and completely decimates them all except for Jen who tell him to “COME AND GET HER!”. Meanwhile Nadira is in the area taking care of a baby and Ransik, thinking she is Jen blasts Nadira. After learning that he could’ve destroyed the only thing that he ever loved, Ransik decides to surrender. With their mission is finally complete, the Time Force Ranger leave for the future which includes a heartwarming moment from each of them as they say goodbye. One I have to point out inparticular is the final moment between Wes & Jen in which Jen admits to Wes that she loves him and they give each other a hug as they say their final goodbyes. After the Time Force Rangers leave for the future. Mr.Collins proposes that Wes joins the Silver Guardians as their leader who will now protect Silver Hills for free. Wes agrees but only if Eric joins him as his partner. For me this episode was always one of the saddest finales in the shows history as it pulls on the heartstrings especially between Wes and Jen who for me and many other people in this fandom wished they kissed as she left for the future. One thing I will complain about this episode is that the way Ransik surrendered. Yes it was a very emotional scene and we have seen moments between Ransik and Nadira that show that Ransik would do anything for his daughter but this same episode had Ransik throw Nadria on the ground after she mourned the death of Frax.
The End Of The Power Rangers
Season: Wild Force
The End Of The Power Rangers is a prime example of a Tzachor finale which pretty much comprises of a copy-paste of the sentai finale. The Wild Force Rangers, celebrating the end of the Org War has come to terms that their jobs as Power Rangers has come to an end. Suddenly, Master Org comes back in a new form and the Wild Force Rangers prepare for their true final battle. However, this battle is not an easy one as Master Org decimates the Wild Force Rangers and their Wild Zords. After claiming victory against the Wild Force Rangers,Master Org summons his vines and polluted rain to engulf the Earth. However, the Wild Force Rangers aren’t done yet as they stand up against Master Org. Suddenly out of nowhere, all the Wild Zords come back and give the Wild Force Rangers their powers back and they are able to destroy Master Org with a Savage Slash right through the heart. After the defeat of Master Org (this time for real) Princess Shayla asks for the Wild Force Rangers morphers and jackets for some reason and raises the Animarium back into the sky until the world needs the Wild Zords again. The episode wraps up with Alyssa telling us what the Wild Force Ranger did after retiring as Power Rangers which includes Danny & Max going on what looks like a honeymoon. This finale for me has always felt forgettable. Usually finales always gives us an epic battle between the rangers and villain with a good way of wrapping up the story. While this finale does all of this it feels like they really rush this as Master Org is destroyed halfway through the part two of the finale. Also, I am never a big fan of concluding all the characters story in a two minute montage. Also, I never understood Princess Shayla’s explanation as to why Merrick couldn’t go with her. They’re both from the same time and there’s nobody to stop you from staying together so what’s the big deal? Finally, why did Shayla take the Wild Force Rangers Jacket? I MEAN REALLY!!!
This Wraps Up My Critiques On The Saban Era Finales. Join Me Next Time As I Cover The Disney Era Finales From Ninja Storm To RPM.