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Power Rangers Super Samurai Episode Review: "Evil Reborn"

November 24, 2012

With the Megaforce Rangers being shown off in the Thanksgiving Parade, and the toys starting to hit stores, there is no doubt that Megaforce fever has hit the fanbase. This isn’t helped by the fact that Nick has dragged on the series for two years due to it’s schedule, and the fact that Samurai has been a bad season. Usually at this point in the season, we should be excited for the finale. Some of us should be sad that we won’t see new episodes every week very soon, and that (excluding the team-up) we won’t see these characters again following these final episodes (unless they happen to return for a big anniversary special). But that’s not the case with Samurai. When you have a season that has many issues, has been dragged out for too long, and is still airing despite the hype train for the next Power Ranger season going into full force, it’s going to have an effect on how much you care for the final episodes. With that said, let’s get into the review.

This episode felt very lackluster to me. It wasn’t annoying, but it definitely had its issues. Not to mention, that because of the way previous episodes were handled, many of the feelings the episode wants me to have simply aren’t present. So the lack of excitement due to the events at hand, along with the usual critiques I have of Samurai episodes make “Evil Reborn” feel very dull. And for an episode that should be raising the levels of excitement to the max, that’s not the right feeling to have.

For instance, let’s look at the whole Kevin subplot. He wants to stay with Lauren instead of going to find Jayden because he feels it’s important to have more than one ranger protect the city in case of an attack. Logical enough. However, if we remember a few episodes ago, Kevin disregarded this logic when Jayden was leaving saying he wanted to go with him. So, when his character acted one way a few episodes ago, why should I take this subplot seriously? Not to mention, it took little convincing from Lauren to have him runoff and find Jayden anyway. So what was the point of him staying behind? Just for a brief, but pointless scene or two with Lauren? Followed by what appears to be using training shots of Lauren and Kevin, each in separate areas, from previous episodes because the production team was lazy? (And you know how much I hate making it obvious you’re using footage from another episode).

Not to mention the Antonio scenes, which again puzzle me to no end. The episode makes it seem like he was too weak to go help the others find Jayden, but not too long after suddenly is feeling better and taking care of Ji, who really wasn’t that injured to begin with? Not to mention, why is Antonio being suck a jerk to Lauren these past few episodes? Why was he avoiding her? (And why on earth does Lauren think the reason they don’t respect her is because she’s not a great leader like Jayden? Lauren, there’s nothing wrong with you. These guys are jerks and idiots.) It’s hard for me to be infested in how characters feel when I’m asking so many questions about why characters are being out of character.

Let’s get to the big parts of the episode though. The newly shot footage of Jayden and Deker unmorphed fight on horses seemed a little more interesting to watch this time around. Overall, the duel itself felt more alive than last episode to be honest. The only thing I did question during this fight is why it took so long for Emily, Mia and Mike to find Jayden and Deker? Usually any character that goes looking for another character finds them pretty quickly. This time around it took many hours to do so, seeing as the battle lasted until Dark. But I digress. Following the battle, the shot with Jayden and Deker in the flame circle looked beautiful, and actually was the one point in the episode things felt a little more tense. Although that was quickly ruined by the arrival of Mike, Mia and Emily, who instead of doing something just stand by the flame circle looking worried. I thought the scene with Dayu’s spirit (Although I still don’t understand how she manifested a spirit anyway…) was ok. I’m guessing Deker remembered who she was? Whatever. After Jayden thinks he’s crazy (since only Deker can see Dayu) and starts to leave, Deker transforms into his monster form and picks up his sword, preparing for a kill strike. Seeing Deker in American Footage with the flame circle in the background is just damn awesome. Seeing Jayden’s face when he thinks he’s about to be struck down by Deker killed that feeling very quickly. Seriously, what the heck Jayden? But Kevin ends up being the one who kills Deker (Which I’m not sure how to feel about) by actually DOING SOMETHING and the gang gets Jayden out of the flame circle and leaves Deker to die. I’m actually shocked that Samurai would let a character like Deker, considering the backstory, and the fact that he’s a human villain, actually die. And it doesn’t look like he’s coming back.

Anyway, after that the gang talks, Jayden says he doesn’t want to come back because he lied to them,  Mike says who cares and everything is resolved. That wasn’t me trying to abridge it, it felt like that plot point was resolved way too quick. Not to mention, they don’t solve the “my team needs to accept Lauren” issue, which is why Jayden left. I’m guessing everyone is cool with her now because the plot demands so!

Anyway, this is where for the rest of the episode, I feel dialogue started to break down. Honestly, the dialogue was terrible to me. Dayu, realizing the man she loved is gone for good, decides to use her harmonium to bring back Xandred since she’s so miserable, while also unleashing many Giant Moogers, as well as an army of smaller ones to get revenge on the world for her lost love. I made it sound cooler than how I actually feel about the scene, because for the rest of the episode I started to care less and less every second. The gang decides to rush towards the harbor to deal with them (although Jayden says he’ll catch up with them because… I don’t know, he ends up appearing in the harbor with them anyway.) and take on the smaller moogers. Jayden fights them un-morphed because… I dunno. I mean, the rest of the team is morphed, why isn’t he? I mean, I love un-morphed fight scenes, but if everyone else is morphed, why is he not?

Mia eventually finds Dayu and the duo engage in a “Who can have the weirdest lines?” contest before Dayu teleports over from the cliff she’s on down to Mia, where they have a brief, odd looking skirmish before Mia slices through the harmonium and Dayu. Dayu claims though that this was part of her plan, as destroying the harmonium unleashes the misery in it, allowing Xandred to not only be no longer dried out, but apparently not start drying up upon being in the human world. Everyone is shocked to see him (And Emily says “I thought he wouldn’t come back” despite the fact that the whole reason Lauren was here and Jayden left is because they thought Xandred would come back and need to use the sealing symbol on him! Seriously, come on Writers!). And with that, we finally end the episode with a cliffhanger, meant to keep us wondering what happens next, but leaving me with little to no care in the world.

Again, this episode didn’t fill me with rage, despite having many flaws. But with all these previous issues, and the way other episodes have left me feeling week after week, this episode just didn’t excite me. It just felt so dull, which is the exact opposite of how I should be feeling. With Megaforce advertising in full force, and next week being December, I just want Samurai to end. And yet we still have two more episodes and a holiday special. I wish I could care more, I really do. But the flaws of this episode made it hard to be excited. And when you don’t have that excitement during an episode like this, it just makes everything feel dull.

I’ll give it a 2/5. Maybe without the flaws, I would have given it a 3.


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