Power Rangers

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Long-running children's action franchise composed largely of Stock Footage from its Japanese counterpart, Super Sentai.

In 1993, Haim Saban decided to do an American adaptation of the previous year's Super Sentai program, Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger, after an unsuccessful prior attempts to adapt previous Sentai programs such as Choudenshi Bioman. In a style not dissimilar to Carl Macek's treatment of Robotech, the action sequences from Zyuranger were intercut with new footage and a new storyline, producing Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers, the first entry in the franchise's history.

The original story followed the adventures of five "teenagers with attitude", selected by an alien being called Zordon to fight his eternal enemy Rita Repulsa who was recently released from containment. Naturally, she came with her own army of Monsters of the Week. Zordon gave each teenager a Transformation Trinket to "morph" into costume as well as powerful Humongous Mecha shaped like dinosaurs, called "Zords". In the show's fourth season it would rename itself as Power Rangers Zeo, utilizing the Sentai tradition of using new costumes every year; as the second and third season continued to use the Zyuranger suits, despite Zyuranger no longer being the main source footage.

It was not until the seventh season (Power Rangers Lost Galaxy) that they took the final step to replacing the entire cast (both heroes and villains) each year. Henceforth, each season would end with the entire team retiring, and the next season would begin with an unrelated group in a different city with a different set of powers with no direct connection to the previous series. In addition to keeping the show "fresh", this excused the writers to recycle episode plots. ("Red Ranger learns how to be a good leader", for example)

The extent to which each Power Rangers incarnation resembles its Super Sentai counterpart varies from season to season. In most cases, the general premise is preserved, but its interpretation is greatly changed - for instance, Lightspeed Rescue added the US-exclusive "Titanium Ranger" to the team since its counterpart, GoGoV did not include a traditional Sixth Ranger. However, some series have closely followed the plots of their counterparts, even borrowing entire episodes (Time Force, Wild Force, SPD, Samurai). In other cases, the original premise is all but discarded (Lost Galaxy's setting was changed from a Lost World-style forest to a space station, and Engine Sentai Go-onger, a Lighter and Softer Sentai series with the mecha essentially as Robot Buddies, was changed to Power Rangers RPM, a Darker and Edgier season set After the End). A main difference with Power Rangers and Super Sentai is the fact that Power Rangers has a single continuity (except for RPM) while each Super Sentai season is its own universe.

During production of its ninth season (Time Force) the show was acquired by Disney. Wild Force would be the first season produced under Disney and the last to be produced by MMPR Productions in California. During its eleventh season (Ninja Storm) production moved to New Zealand and Village Roadshow Productions took over production of the show until 2009. As of 2010, Saban has repurchased the series and all rights to it under a new umbrella venture called Saban Brands, effectively uncancelling Power Rangers... again.

The Saban Era:

The Disney Era:

The Second Saban Era:

The franchise spawned two feature films. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was a big-budget affair with entirely US-produced footage and extensive CGI, set as a Non-Serial Movie in an Alternate Continuity to season 3. The second film, Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie had simply better production values than the TV series, and is within the regular continuity, setting up the premise of the Turbo season, but reception was much more negative than the other one.

For an interesting look at the franchise as a whole, Linkara of Channel Awesome has set out to give a critical analysis of every season and every incarnation, calling it the History of Power Rangers with the videos here. Unlike most other sections of the site, this project is not inherently comical in nature (while jokes do show up) and is a genuine review based on its own terms, not trying to compare it to Super Sentai or expecting it to be something other than a kid-oriented action show (and as such generally ignores tropes like Never Say "Die" as that is mostly a part of the genre).

As of June 2011, all 17 seasons (and the 2010 reversion of MMPR), plus Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: The Movie and Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie are available for streaming on Netflix, along with Big Bad Beetleborgs and VR Troopers.

It has also been confirmed that all the seasons up to RPM are to be released on DVD and Blu-Ray beginning in the summer of 2012. Along with VR Troopers and Beetleborgs. And the Fandom Rejoiced.


The Power Rangers franchise is the Trope Namer for:

The Power Rangers franchise provides examples of the following tropes:
  • The Ace: Phantom Ranger, Shadow Ranger, most Sixth Rangers before the footage runs out.
  • Action Girl: All of the female Rangers fall under this, as they're all talented martial artists, either by training, Applied Phlebotinum or magic.
  • Adaptation Distillation: It really depends on the season. The single continuity of Power Rangers means that they are more inclined to stay in the middle of goofy comedy and serious drama, whereas the Alternate Continuity nature of Super Sentai allows them to swing across the extremes. There are times when, despite the looser Moral Guardians on Super Sentai, Power Rangers has been better received than their Sentai counterpart. As an example the serious Chouriki Sentai Ohranger wasn't a very popular series and likely because of that the comedic Gekisou Sentai Carranger was a welcome change of pace. The reception of their American counterparts, Power Rangers Zeo and Power Rangers Turbo (still largely retaining their Sentai roots), was reversed because of the adaptation process.
  • An Aesop
  • Aliens Speaking English: It doesn't matter whether you're American, from a galaxy away or from another culture 300 years ago, you will be speaking English.
    • Aliens of London: And a lot of these people have deliberate accents. Just go with it.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: Nearly every Grand Finale, with only Zeo and Jungle Fury being spared some form of it - both because they went for epic Storming The Castles instead; and Ninja Storm and Dino Thunder had both (simultaneously, even!). In Space did an All Your Base in the fourth episode, with help from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles; and RPM had it practically as a Running Gag for a little while.
  • All Your Colors Combined: Various attacks that use all five Rangers firing at once.
  • All Your Powers Combined: A Monster of the Week will show up every once in a while with this ability.
  • Animal-Themed Superbeing: Many teams are animal themed one way or another.
  • The Artifact: After the end of the Zordon Era (Season 6, Power Rangers in Space) the Humongous Mecha are still called Zords.
    • Zordon's rules regarding Rangers' secret identities, battle escalation and use of powers could also be considered this, even though they're still followed for the most part.
  • Art Shift: The most concise way to describe the shift from live-action to People in Rubber Suits that occurs Once an Episode.
    • The material used for the ranger suits differs slightly from the sentai versions (the sentai ones tend to be more shiny) so it's pretty clear what's sentai footage and what's new.
  • Ascended Fanboy: Crops up from time to time since Ninja Storm, though Justin of Turbo was the first.
  • Asskicking Pose
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Once an Episode
  • Autobots Rock Out
  • Badbutt: Most Sixth Rangers. Whether or not some elevate to full Badass - and just which ones - is an exercise best left to the viewer.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space
  • Beam Me Up, Scotty: Zordon never told Alpha to recruit "teenagers with attitude." He asked for "overbearing and overemotional humans." Alpha said, "not that, not teenagers!" The phrase was used in the introduction, but was a way to condense that scene. Became a trope namer.
  • Big Bad
  • Big Damn Heroes: Sixth Rangers (and any Ranger guest stars) love this trope, due to Stock Footage constraints.
  • Black and White Morality: For the most part.
  • Brought Down to Normal: Most post-Zordon-era seasons end with the Rangers being depowered; either by having the power source run dry, willingly giving them up, or losing them. (Similar things happened during the Zordon era, but since the casts carried over and soon got new powers they qualify as Discard and Draw.)
  • By the Power of Greyskull
  • California Doubling: Later, New Zealand doubling. New Zealand doubling for California no less.
    • Briefly, Australia doubling, though most of the episodes filmed there were actually set in Australia.
  • Camera Abuse: Starting to see use as of the 2000s, enemy explosions generally cause the battlefield "camera" to shake violently, in an attempt to hide the twitches and slight movements by Rangers and Zords during finisher poses.
  • Camp
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Many villains described themselves as being 'evil' and against 'good', and served evil itself.
  • Cash Cow Franchise
  • The Cast Showoff: Many hobbies and skills of the actors are integrated into their characters. Amy Jo Johnson's gymnastics training and Walter Jones' Dance Battler skills are the more famous.
    • Cast the Expert: And the show usually seeks out people with martial arts or other athletic backgrounds to start with.
  • Cerebus Rollercoaster: Seems to be in a bit of a cycle drifting between serious and silly; undoubtedly helped by the fact that things start from scratch each season:
    • Cerebus Syndrome: In Space skewed the franchise a bit more seriously, and ever since it's never been quite as goofy as the earliest seasons. RPM can be considered a half-Cerebus; its After the End setting is darker than any before, but plays franchise tropes with a wink and a nudge that keep you from taking it too seriously.
    • Reverse Cerebus Syndrome: Ninja Storm brought a level of silliness and self-awareness back to the series (though not quite to the level of Mighty Morphin). Samurai does this in contrast to RPM's darker elements.
  • Channel Hop: Started on FOX, but when the Fox Kids block died it went over to ABC and Disney's cable channels (but, strangely, not Disney XD when it launched). Then Saban got it back and is bringing it to Nickelodeon and Nicktoons.
  • Character-Magnetic Team: There's always at least one Sixth Ranger, but the Disney seasons tended to pile them on - Operation Overdrive is the only one of those that got away with a single Sixth Ranger[3]. This is partly because a lot of those seasons started with reduced Power Trios and had more room to expand.
  • Chest Insignia: Almost every Ranger sports a team logo and maybe a personal symbol somewhere on their suits; if not on the chest then on the belt buckle or helmet, usually. A number of these are Brought to You by The Letter "S".
  • The Chosen Many: The growing number of Rangers eventually meant there were teams all over the place with different duties, although in this case "the place" is for the most part California, which may run out of Muggles in a few years at this rate. Or large metropolitan areas that haven't been used yet for bad guys to attack. There is a certain amount of Fridge Logic with some of the Reunion Shows especially when Ranger powers weren't destroyed... if things got bad enough the current Rangers could always call for support.
  • Chrome Champion: Many Sixth Rangers invoke this, though even the main Mighty Morphin Rangers got Metallic Armor in season 3.
  • City of Adventure: Angel Grove for the first 6 seasons; after that each season has its own city.
  • Clip Show/Recap Episode: One in every season starting with Lost Galaxy, though earlier seasons occasionally had them too, especially shortly before or after a power switch in the Mighty Morphin to Zeo days.
  • Color Character: Oh so many. A common way for Sixth Rangers to set themselves apart is to not have this kind of name.
  • Color Coded for Your Convenience: Rangers will always have their gear and wardrobe, at a minimum, match their color. It's also gotten to the point where each color has a character type usually (not always, but usually) associated with it - see Five-Man Band below.
  • Comm Links: The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers had communicators that also happened to tap into their mentor's teleportation system. Later teams had communications built into their morphers (and many of those are cell phones anyway).
  • Conservation of Ninjitsu: Monster of the Week, there are many instances of a monster beating up an entire team of Rangers, but when there are dozens of monsters, these are degraded to simples Elite Mooks.
  • Continuity Creep: Seasons are still mostly self-contained, but compare Mighty Morphin's interchangeable Monsters of the Week to, say, Operation Overdrive's ongoing treasure hunt.
  • Continuity Nod: A Long Runner like Power Rangers is almost obligated to have them.
  • Creator Provincialism: Most of the Cities Of Adventure are based in California, and the rest also appear to be in the western US. RPM has a couple hidden references to Boston (the hometown of its first executive producer Eddie Guzelian).
  • Cute Is Evil: The child among the villains is always The Starscream.
  • Dark Action Girl: Most female villains. A few others are Dark Magical Girls.
  • Deadly Fireworks Display: Happens to the Monster of the Week every single episode.
  • Did Not Do Research: This trope comes up a lot over the years, the list of subjects that the Rangers have inaccuracy discussed is includes history, math, geography, physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy, economics, and others. And most of those could have been fixed without affecting the episodes in question.
  • Discard and Draw: For the first few seasons, the heroes would lose their powers and get new ones at the beginning of each series.
  • Disk One Final Boss: Multiple, every Big Bad before Dark Specter could be considered one, and there are one or more in several seasons afterward.
    • Subverted in some seasons where the first Big Bad's replacement turns out to be an Interim Villain, and the original comes back by the finale even though they were defeated earlier in the story.
  • The Dragon
    • Co-Dragons: Multiple seasons have them, but Goldar and Scorpina were the first.
  • Everything Fades: "Destroyed" villains explode, dissolve, etc. and on the very rare occasions that someone we're supposed to like is Killed Off for Real, it looks rather sparkly.
  • Evil Laugh: While not every laugh is memorable, most villains have at least one of these.
  • Evil Only Has to Win Once: If any team of Rangers are defeated it will be The End of the World as We Know It.
  • Evil Virtues: There are a surprising number of villains with at least one redeeming trait. Notable in Lost Galaxy.
  • Executive Meddling: Originally all the villains were suppose to be vaporized by Zordon's wave in countdown (excluding Karone/Astronema of course). Fox Kids' BS&P forbade them to kill off the human villains.
    • This is why Wes and Jen didn't kiss at the end of Time Force. Although it's also why Eric survived.
    • Also in SPD, as far as making the Omega Ranger a ball of light when he wasn't morphed because the producers decided to spend most of the budget creating an all-original Zord/Monster fight for the finale.
    • Supposedly why Tommy wasn't killed off when his Super Sentai equivalent was, though also the reason why he came back as the Sixth Ranger a second time - a good example of Tropes Are Not Bad.
  • Expository Theme Tune (Less common in the early seasons)
  • Fake American: From Ninja Storm onward, production took place in New Zealand, with mostly local actors trying their darnedest to pretend they didn't have Kiwi accents. Subverted by Xander in Mystic Force, who didn't even bother hiding his accent and was eventually handwaved as a native Australian that immigrated to the States.
    • In RPM, there's a fake Scotsman (Blue Ranger Flynn); also played by a Kiwi. Samurai has a Fake Mexican (Gold Ranger Antonio) played by a Thai/German!
  • Family-Friendly Firearms: Generally justified. Justifications for family friendly energy weapons include aliens, time travel, secret government programs, magic, and in at least one case, funding.
  • Fan Convention: 2007 and 2010 brought Power Morphicon, with another planned for 2012.
  • Fan Service: Of the non-sexual kind; it's the only reason for the anniversary episodes "Forever Red" and "Once a Ranger".
    • Meanwhile, the exceptional number of Beach Episodes in both Mighty Morphin and Ninja Storm count in the normal way (at least Ninja Storm had an excuse, as Tori was a surfer). Lost Galaxy's Yellow Ranger, Maya, also had a rather fanservicey outfit.
      • And Karone, the reformed Astronema, who had suddenly turned all simple and demure after missing out on her own childhood, is always wrapped up in a tight black leather outfit for no apparent reason.
        • Speaking of tight black leather, Jen in "Reinforcements From the Future".
      • For the ladies or some guys, a Shirtless Scene with Jason or Tommy (or both) was a common occurrence.
    • Panty Shot: Ashley from Turbo/In Space has one, but it was probably unintentional. That said, they do match her Ranger color, so the production team must have at least considered the possibility of it happening.
    • Dulcea also delivers this in the 'Mighty Morphin Power Rangers movie.
  • Fantasy Helmet Enforcement: While the helmets on their suits don't count, safety helmets are used a lot to the point of Fridge Logic. Dino Thunder is a major offender.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Due to its many seasons, the show has had many different types of characters, including wizards, witches, space police, animal spirits, aliens, gods, demons, robots, cyborgs, and computer viruses... and they're ALL in the same universe (Well, for the most part).
  • Fate Worse Than Death: Serious Fridge Horror stuff.
  • Finishing Move: Every season had 1 or more for the normal size, one for the giant size (of each megazord combination). Plus the Battilizer when available.
  • Five-Bad Band: Every few seasons would have something similar.
  • Five-Man Band: The Red Ranger is always The Hero and the Pink Ranger tends to fall closest to The Chick; but The Lancer, The Big Guy, and The Smart Guy usually vary between teams. That's not to say each color doesn't have its standard character type (Note: for simplicity, we're ignoring Sixth Rangers):
    • Red: The Hero and Standardized Leader. Usually Hot-Blooded to a degree and often a newcomer (there's a reason for the trope Rookie Red Ranger). Too many Red Rangers fit this description to count, with Cole and Jack arguably being the most glaring examples.
    • Blue: More logically-minded and usually The Quiet One, sometimes forming a Red Oni, Blue Oni pair with Red. Might be The Smart Guy, might not. Often The Lancer if there isn't a Black Ranger to take the role. (see Kai, Lucas, Ethan, Sky, Theo, Kevin)
    • Black: The cool guy of the team; confident and independent if not outright rebellious. Tends to be The Lancer. (See Zack, Carlos, Will, Dillon).
    • Green: Often the Plucky Comic Relief -- variously by being a Butt Monkey (Damon and Joel), Cloudcuckoolander (Trip, Bridge) or Meta Guy (Ziggy).
      • Teams usually have Green or Black Rangers in the core team but not both; often making Blue, Black, and Green character traits shuffle ("Black" characters include Blue Ranger Lucas and Green Rangers Carlos[4], Xander, and Mike; "Greens" include Blue Rangers Rocky, Max, and Dax; and "Blues" are Adam[5] and Black Ranger Danny.)
    • Yellow and Pink: Both Action Girls. Usually Tomboy and Girly Girl, respectively, but reversals aren't uncommon. A couple times the "Pink" girl actually wears White, but other than wardrobe it's the same thing. In teams with one girl, her color defaults to Yellow but she can be either character type.
      • Twice (Ninja Storm and Mystic Force) Blue and Yellow were worn by opposite the normal genders. When this happened, the girl's character type remained the same but the male Yellow Rangers (Dustin, Chip) filled the quirky Green role.
  • Five-Token Band: Every season, although there are often two Caucasians but one of them is always a girl.
    • Samurai comes closest - two Caucasians, male (Jayden) and female (Emily), one Asian (Mia), two Latinos (Mike and Antonio), and one African-American (Kevin).
    • Some of it matters in the details, but Samurai might take a second place to Zeo. Tommy was Native American (it was around the time of Zeo that they started playing up his Native American Heritage), Adam was Asian, Rocky was Hispanic, Tanya was black, and Kat was Caucasian (and even then she was an Australian living in America).
  • Fleeting Demographic Rule: The seasonal themes; recycled ones include dinosaurs (eleven years between the first season of Mighty Morphin and Dino Thunder), ninjas (eight years between the third season of Mighty Morphin and Ninja Storm), animals (six years between Wild Force and Jungle Fury) and Cool Cars (12 years between Turbo and RPM).
  • Friday Night Death Slot: A variant. Because the series was not an Edutainment Show, many ABC affiliates refused to carry it in its assigned late Saturday morning timeslot and often relegated it to air at 5am on Saturday or Sunday before the church shows or farm report. Some even threw it out entirely as they regarded the show as radioactive to their attempts to maintain that their children's shows were all educational. And on the stations where it ran when it was supposed to, that timeslot tended to be preempted for sports.
  • Future Spandex: The rangers always wear skintight spandex suits.
  • Gendered Outfit: Female Rangers tend to wear skirts along with their uniforms (but not always, thanks to...)
  • Gender Flip/She's a Man In Japan: The Yellow Rangers up to Wild Force; occurrences of Yellow Ranger gender synchronicity prior to Wild Force (in Zeo, Turbo, and in Space) were because it was a rare case of the Super Sentai show having two girls as well.
    • An exception was made with Ninja Yellow from Ninja Sentai Kakuranger, whose American counterpart (the Yellow Alien Ranger) was also male, although the Alien Rangers were not used that much.
  • Godzilla Threshold
  • Gondor Calls for Aid: "Forever Red" and "Once a Ranger". The in Space Grand Finale actually subverted it as various Rangers across various worlds was still not enough.
  • Good Is Dumb
  • Got the Call on Speed Dial: Tommy Oliver is the Most Triumphant Example of this trope as all the incarnations of his powers could form a full five-man team (with TWO Red Rangers no less!), although Jason made a go at it as well.
  • Grand Finale: Despite not being the actual finale for the show, "Countdown to Destruction" did manage to finish the storyline for the first six seasons.
  • Great Offscreen War: Several. Throughout the various series extremely numerous references are made by various unrelated characters in unrelated seasons to significant battles 10,000 years ago and 3,000 years ago. Other than that, we got nothin' on 'em.
  • Head Bob
  • Heel Face Turn: Most Sixth Rangers are not aligned with the good guys at first, if not outright evil. A few Big Bads have also made the turn.
  • Henshin Hero
  • Heroic Build: Usually averted on the show, barring the occasional powerup, but often played straight in merchandising and official artwork (which, in all honesty, clashes with what we see on TV).
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Normally once or twice a season at least.
    • Senseless Sacrifice: Tommy losing the zords and their powers in early Mighty Morphin Season 3. TJ sacrificing the Rescue Zords (Turbo). Karone trying to stop the asteroid (In Space).
    • Stupid Sacrifice: Karone trying to stop the asteroid (again In Space). Tommy sacrificing the zords (Dino Thunder).
  • Highly-Conspicuous Uniform: Dillon from RPM said it best.

Dillon: Right, because nothing says "covert" like bright red, yellow, and blue spandex.

    • The Time Force crew stuck out pretty badly in their uniforms before Wes hooked them up with 21st century civilian clothes. Later team civilian uniforms would subvert this, and RPM itself would avert it with their "uniforms" being leather jackets and jeans.
  • Home Base and Supervillain Lair: All seasons have both, but the type and importance varies.
    • Elaborate Underground Base: Zeo, Turbo, Ninja Storm, Dino Thunder, and Operation Overdrive.
    • Underwater Base: Lightspeed Rescue
    • Space Base: Rita's and later Zedd's base was on the moon, as well as the Machine Empire's during their attack on Earth. Astronema's Dark Fortress was also a space base, and Divatox got one too.
      • The Rangers had the Astro Megaship and Terra Venture.
  • Human Aliens: All over the universe. Some of whom even call themselves humans, with no explanation.
  • Humongous Mecha
  • Identical Grandson: Very nearly every Time Travel story ever, becoming a plot point in Time Force.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: During Bruce Kalish's run between SPD and Jungle Fury; every title had a specific number of words depending on the season.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy
  • Improbable Age: Tommy "swiss cheese memory" Oliver is implied to have gotten an 8-year PhD then done a bunch of top secret projects all within 6 years.
    • Dana is a paramedic at age 18, and a full-fledged doctor less than a year later.
    • Rose is a college professor at a similar age, but at least she's a genius!
    • Dr. K created the RPM Ranger powers and is no older than 19... and then we find out her past, and suddenly her immense technological skills make more sense.
    • Then there's "Spike" Skullovich, who had to have been born during Zeo to be 15 during Samurai.
  • Improv Fu: The use of the playgrounds and improvised weapons like trash cans and brooms is insanely common in almost all of the shows, most blatantly with Ziggy in RPM.
  • Instant Expert/Upgrade Artifact: Nearly every Ranger knows how to fight and pilot Humongous Mecha once they use a morpher; though the fighting ability is often justified by training for some time before. Subverted by Billy, who could only fight while morphed, and Ziggy, where not even morphing helps.
  • International Coproduction: Between Saban Entertainment/Disney/Saban Brands from the United States, Toei Company in Japan, and later Village Roadshow in New Zealand.
    • Toei also has half of the copyright ownership of all things Power Rangers.
  • Jerkass: Multiple, most famously Bulk and Skull in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Season 1.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: During RPM and the Mighty Morphin Recut, Disney pulled all of the previous seasons from American television, and even the current seasons were constantly pre-empted for half of the country. Saban would fix this during Samurai by uploading the entire series run to Netflix, and Shout Factory is due to release DVDs.
  • Keep It Foreign: Played straight in the Mexican dubs with the names of the Rangers and Zords until Dino Thunder, since Disney bought the franchise and the Spanish dubbing was switched from Mexico to Argentina due to cost reasons. Due to complicated cultural reasons unrelated to the trope, Argentinian translators translated them back to Spanish. When Saban bought back the series from Disney, the dubbing work returns again to Mexican hands.
  • Kung Foley: Whenever the Rangers are morphed, it doesn't matter whether they're throwing a punch in battle or just sticking their fist in the air in a dramatic pose, the rotation of their arm will inevitably produce a loud WHOOSH.
  • Law of Chromatic Superiority: The Red Ranger gets all the best stuff, even when he's not exactly the leader.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: Considering they assemble an entirely new cast every season...
  • Local Hangout: Several.
    • The Juice Bar in Mighty Morphin' . Replaced by the Surf Spot in In Space.
    • Ninja Storm had Storm Chargers, the sporting goods store where Dustin (and later Hunter and Blake) works.
    • Dino Thunder had Hayley's Cyberspace Cafe (where we first meet Trent.)
    • Mystic Force had Rockporium, Toby's music store, where Xander works and Vida sometimes spins.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Often the Long Lost Sibling version: Andros and Astronema (siblings), Leo and Magna Defender - sort of (siblings), Dana and Ryan (siblings), Cam and Lothor (nephew-uncle), Marah, and Kapri (cousins), Trent and Mesogog (son-father), Nick and both Koragg and Udonna (son-parents), Dillon and Tenaya (siblings).
  • Lull Destruction: The dubbed-over dialogue in most of the fight scenes. If you compare the footage, the Sentai Rangers seldom talk during fighting (except for Calling Your Attacks), while the Power Rangers make liberal use of Badass Boast interspersed with You Fight Like a Cow.
  • Magic A Is Magic A: Batman Can Breathe in Space and the moon has a temperate environment. People will scream Did Not Do the Research, but at least they are consistent.
    • But notably broken in Mystic Force. Magiranger had a well-defined magic system that Mystic Force didn't bother to keep.
    • It seems they learned their lesson in Samurai. Even though many of the Symbol Power-drawn kanji are different from those used in Shinkenger, their function is consistent with their meaning.
  • Male Gaze
  • The Mentor
  • Merchandise-Driven: In addition to the action figures and mecha, each season now adds motorcycles, a "battlizer" armor, and, in a couple seasons, a semi truck "mobile command center" not present in the Japanese version to justify additional toys. Jungle Fury took it to extremes, creating new Rangers based on extra zords and giving them as many variations as the original Rangers. (RPM has Canon Foreigner Rangers too, but only one basic figure apiece compared to Jungle Fury's deluge.)
    • Environment Specific Action Figure: Makes up the majority of the toyline; only a small sample makes it to the show. But only for the male Rangers; the girls get shafted in this department. Samurai is notable in that an armor variant has displaced the normal suits in the merchandising.
    • Official Cosplay Gear
  • Meta Casting: It can be argued this is where the popularity of the franchise comes from. The vast majority of actors involved across the years are skilled martial artists in their own right, some even owning their own Dojo. Aside from the Sentai costume footage, they apparently perform many of their own stunts (even in costume) and choreograph many of their own fights. This adds a level of authenticity that even more serious action dramas lack.
    • In particular Jason David Frank (Tommy, the first Green Ranger) has been rising up in MMA bouts (he's still in the underground but he's undefeated so far), and Blake Foster (Justin, the Blue Turbo Ranger) has beaten opponents in tournaments who want to fight "the blue Power Ranger."
  • Meta Origin: The Morphin' Grid: hinted at in Mighty Morphin, Dino Thunder and SPD, confirmed in Operation Overdrive. They finally explain the grid in RPM, though they don't call it by name and that's an Alternate Universe.
  • Milestone Celebration: "Forever Red" (10 seasons), "Legacy of Power" (500 episodes), "Once a Ranger" (15 years)
  • Mini-Dress of Power: Female Rangers usually have skirts added to the basic Ranger suit, with a number of Yellows being exceptions because She's a Man In Japan.
  • Misplaced Wildlife: From the non-dinosaur Mastodon, Pterodactyl, Saber-Toothed Tiger and Dragonzord to sharks, penguins, and rhinos in the jungle.
  • Monster of the Aesop: Some monsters had a tendency to be directly linked with whatever Aesop the Rangers were learning. The trope is played with in "A Monster of Global Proportions", where the monster was a statue represented the Aesop but didn't have anything to do with it.
  • Monster of the Week
  • Mooks and Mecha-Mooks
  • More Dakka
  • Most Fanfic Writers Are Girls
  • Motif:
  • My Kung Fu Is Stronger Than Yours
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Just look at any Big Bad or Dragon.
  • Network Red Headed Stepchild: During Disney's seasons.
  • Never Bring a Knife to A Fist Fight
  • Never Say "Die"
  • No Hugging, No Kissing (averted in some seasons, played straight in others)
  • No Indoor Voice: In most of the later series, every single line uttered by a Ranger in-costume was shouted, even outside of combat or noisy environments.
  • Non-Serial Movie: Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, completely overridden by Mighty Morphin Power Rangers season 3 episodes 4-7.
  • Not as You Know Them / Same Character but Different: More often than not, despite adapting elements from its source material, Super Sentai, each ranger will be dramatically different from their Japanese counterparts, in nearly every possible way.
  • Not Quite Dead: A few major villains have had several "final" encounters. Bonus points if the villain is someone who resurfaced after having been thought dead before the season began.
  • Oddly-Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo
  • Official Couple: There's one about every other season.
  • Once a Season: The arrival of the Sixth Ranger, the Mid-Season Upgrade and the Reunion Show.
  • One Steve Limit: Mostly played straight, but it makes the occasional repeat name stand out all the more. "Venjix" in particular caused a bunch of Epileptic Trees when it was reused.
    • Other violations of the limit include two Kats and a Katie (MMPR-Turbo, SPD, and Time Force respectively) and two Mikes (Lost Galaxy and Samurai). Incidentally, both "Kat"s are Meaningful Names for the same reason.
    • Zords in particular have been saddled with repeat names; we have two sets each of Dinozords (Mighty Morphin Season 1 and Dino Thunder), Thunderzords (Mighty Morphin Season 2 and Ninja Storm), Ninjazords (Mighty Morphin Season 3 and Ninja Storm), Rescuezords (Turbo and Lightspeed Rescue), and Omegazords (Lightspeed Rescue and SPD; though the latter is properly the Omegamax Megazord)
    • Mondo the Magician, a villain from Season 2 of Mighty Morphin, is unrelated to King Mondo, the ruler of the Machine Empire from Zeo.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Like children running on a freshly waxed linoleum floor in stocking feet, from Ninja Storm on.
    • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Richard Brancatisano in Mystic Force; eventually handwaved as Xander being a native Aussie. Some other minor characters don't bother either, but they don't get enough lines to be intrusive.
    • Particularly amusing in RPM, in which New Zealander Ari Boyland must (hilariously) try to maintain a Scottish accent as Flynn.
    • RPM might take a backseat to Samurai. The show frequently will show a Ranger's relatives or even flashbacks of them as children, and bless them, the child actors just can't do American that well. Emily's big sis Serena and the child versions of Jayden and Antonio were especially obvious.
  • Pale Females, Dark Males: Seen on Blue Rangers; compare Tori and Madison to just about every male Blue Ranger ever. The only exception is Aquitian Ranger Cestro, who wore a lighter shade of blue in his uniform.
  • People in Rubber Suits
  • Plug N Play Friends
  • Power Gives You Wings: Various Zords get wings from allies or once upgraded.
    • The Mystic Force Battlizer armor was made from a magical European-style dragon.
    • In Mighty Morphin, Goldar had wings, and he was the most powerful dragon on the show. When he lost his memory and joined Rito as a member of a second Plucky Comic Relief duo in Zeo, he lost his wings. Finally, later in the season when Rita restores his memory, Goldar's wings magically return along with his sword and, as we can likely assume, his powers.
  • The Power of Friendship: "Teamwork" is a major running theme on the show.
  • Power Trio: Ninja Storm, Dino Thunder, Jungle Fury, and RPM start with these instead of a Five-Man Band. Technically SPD also started with one, but it was up to a Five-Man Band by the second episode. Each trio also inevitably fills the subtropes:
  • Precursor Heroes: Several teams are successors to previous non-Ranger groups of heroes.
  • Product Promotion Parade
  • Puny Earthlings
  • Put Down The Powers And Step Away: In Mighty Morphin Power Rangers they play this trope painfully straight whenever they take hostages. Other seasons have examples of this as well.
  • Put on a Bus: Technically, everyone! But more traditional examples include Tommy (in seasons 1 and 2 when he lost his Green Ranger powers) and Ryan (returns for finale). Kendrix is something between this and a Disney Death.
    • Long Bus Trip: Characters rarely if ever show up again once their season's over (or the equivalent in the Zordon era). Some really blatant examples are Jason, Zack, and Trini, shipped off to Switzerland for a Teen Peace Conference; Jason took two years to return and Zack and Trini, as far as we know, still haven't gotten back; and Rocky didn't even go anywhere but still disappeared.
      • Character Outlives Actor: Unfortunately, Trini's actress, Thuy Trang, died in a car accident in 2001, though it's unknown if her character died too.
  • Radial Ass-Kicking: EVERY EPISODE.
  • Ranger: Pretty inevitable for obvious reasons, though whether they really do suffer Badass Decay or not varies by season.
  • Recap Episode: Generally one per season. The only noteworthy one being Dino Thunder's "Legacy of Power", which featured a compilation of clips from the entire franchise in honor of the show's 500th episode.
  • Recursive Import: Power Rangers regularly gets dubbed back into Japanese, often with the voices of people who played their Japanese counterparts to begin with, and shown on Japanese TV.
  • Recycled in Space: Power Rangers in Space has been called this, for obvious reasons (even though it isn't), but most seasons amount to this.
  • Redemption Equals Death
  • Reinventing the Telephone: It's there, but justified or averted a surprising amount of the time if you think about it - earlier seasons were before cell phones were common, and in many later ones the morphers are phones.
  • Reunion Show: The current team joining forces with the previous years' is a yearly tradition going back to Lost Galaxy (even if many Disney seasons skipped it), plus the Milestone episodes and a couple scattered ones in Zeo and In Space.
  • Right Hand Versus Left Hand: Sometimes the Rangers survive only because of bickering and backstabbing on the villains front. The best example was the Psycho Rangers, who were stronger, faster, and better than the Rangers in most ways... except they hated each other as much as the rangers. The arguing between Psycho Pink and Psycho Yellow in particular.
  • Robot Buddy: Alpha 5 for 4 seasons, Alpha 6 for 3 seasons, Circuit, R.I.C. Cyber Cam might fit by proxy, since he's a computer-generated duplicate of Cam, but pretty solid for a holographic counterpart.
  • Saved From Development Hell: The attempts in The Eighties and early Nineties by Saban (and Marvel before that) just to get the pilot picked up by a network, ANY NETWORK. It was only when Saban went to Fox Kids, and Margaret Loesch (who worked with Stan Lee on the Marvel attempt) who was the head at the time, that the show was picked up. This combined with the Uncancelled entry below, brings new meaning to the lyric, No one can ever take them down..
  • Science Fantasy: Quite possibly one of the finest examples of this trope.
  • Screaming Warrior: When they really feel like adapting the Super Sentai look and feel.
  • Screwed by the Network: Disney's actions towards the series, including the show's gradual disappearance from cable, scheduling RPM where it can constantly be pre-empted and timeshifted, and the lack of full-season DVD sets in the US.
  • Sculpted Physique: The various series' monsters.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: A constantly recurring trope, going all the way back to the first episode.
    • Sealed Cast in a Multipack: "Cans" make a good source for Monsters of the Week, as well as for lost powerups for the Rangers to reclaim.
  • Second Episode Introduction: Often used with the first morph and/or first use of the Megazord.
  • Secret Identity: In most series, but averted when the team is officially sponsored by the government (or in Operation Overdrive, a private corporation).
  • Sentai (Considering the source material is titled Super Sentai...)
  • Sequel Number Snarl: Disney and Saban consider the Mighty Morphin' Recut to be Season 18 and Samurai is Season 19. Fans generally don't count the Recut, considering Samurai to be the true Season 18. Samurai has also been described as two roughly 20-episode seasons.
  • Series Fauxnale: Most Triumphant Example, considering every time it got uncanceled the series finale became one of these, so it has 5.
  • Shonen Upgrade (of course)
  • Showy Invincible Hero: The whole point of the show, and arguably the Trope Codifier for a generation or more.
  • The Smurfette Principle: The show itself is not so bad about this, but good luck finding an action figure of one of the girls.
    • Played straight in Ninja Storm (Tori), Dino Thunder (Kira), and Jungle Fury (Lily) - all three core teams were Power Trios instead of Five Man Bands, and the Rangers that joined them later were all male. RPM is arguable; aside from Summer, there is Gemma, but she's a Sixth Ranger (and so was absent from the first half) and only half of a Single-Minded Twins character (except when you consider her interactions with Flynn).
  • The Something Force: Time Force, Wild Force, and Mystic Force. Foreign dubs add more.
  • Sorting Algorithm of Evil
  • Space Friction: Any season with space travel, but especially In Space and Lost Galaxy.
  • Spandex, Latex, or Leather: Spandex, no matter what Dr. K tells you.
    • The 1995 movie subverts this by having the suits made of PVC and metal plating to give them more of an armor-like feel.
    • The A-Squad in SPD wore what essentially amounted to modified motocross suits; it actually doesn't look half bad, especially considering they're supposed to be an elite police squad.
  • The Starscream
  • Stock Footage: Arguably, the entire point behind the American series.
  • Stock Super Powers: Rangers sometimes have extra powers that they can access as civilians. Sometimes they're justified as the Rangers are primarily training in a supernatural art which the Ranger powers are a further extension of. Other times they're just tacked on for little reason. Predominantly a Disney-era trope, where just about every Ranger on every team had some special power, but the occasional other Ranger has an ability, too.
  • Storming the Castle: Not as often as the reverse All Your Base Are Belong to Us, but it happens. As noted above, Zeo and Jungle Fury used this in place of All Your Base for their finales, and Ninja Storm and Dino Thunder used both at once.
  • Strictly Formula: It's gradually become less formulaic and more complex, but man, those early episodes...
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Always there, but taken to extremes during Bruce Kalish's time on the series, where simply announcing their arrival would cause color-coded explosions behind the Rangers. (Lampshaded and weaponized in an episode of RPM.)
  • Super Mode: There are some power-ups that have accumulated over the years. In Space introduced the "Battlizer" mode, which includes some heavy weapons, armor and usually flight capability. The Battlizer mode is in nearly every following Power Ranger series and (surprisingly) is an American-only creation. Beginning with Dino Thunder (though Lost Galaxy did it before then), many series would have a lighter Super Mode available to the whole team; these originated in Sentai.
    • Though, interestingly, the Super Sentai team up between Dekaranger and Magiranger had Deka Red use SPD's Battlizer, and had characters comment on it as being a new device built for him after Dekaranger ended.
  • Super Robot
  • Super Sentai Stance: Considering this show comes from Super Sentai, usage of the Stance is inevitable in most episodes.
  • Superhero Packing Heat: Almost no Ranger is adverse to using (inevitably Family Friendly) firearms if they've got them, but the trope really comes into play with sanctioned law enforcement teams like Lightspeed Rescue, Time Force, and SPD.
  • Surveillance as the Plot Demands
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Mostly the early seasons when they would rotate actors mid-season. Katherine was a reformed mole and was much different then Kimberly, but when she became the second Pink Ranger she took over as a Romantic Interest for Tommy. Others did manage to stand out, most notably Adam when he came on board.
  • Take Over the City: Whatever ambitions towards World Domination they may have, every villain up until Power Rangers in Space and some after only ever focused on the town the Rangers themselves lived in.
    • Partially justified, as managing to subdue the Rangers in their own turf would in turn mean they'd have less trouble taking over everywhere else.
  • Taste the Rainbow: Multicolored spandex jokes aside; there's a Ranger team for just about every category that could fall under a young boy's Rule of Cool: dinosaur Rangers, ninja Rangers, car Rangers, beast Rangers, wizard Rangers, and so on and so on...
  • Taught By Experience: Almost ALL Power Rangers, but expecially the 'Red Rookies'.
  • Techno Wizard: A recurring character type, who can usually be counted on to bring out new gear occasionally. See Billy, Miss Fairweather, Trip, Cam, Hayley, Kat Manx, Dr. K, and Antonio.
  • Thememobile: Even ignoring the zords, there's still the Rangers' personal motorcycles and the occasional car - and in Ninja Storm and Dino Thunder, Ranger-themed Big Badass Rigs. And a ton more in the toys that never make it to the show.
  • Theme Naming: Probably unintentional, but the first five Pink Rangers are, in order: Kimberly, Katherine, Cassie, Kendrix and Karone, although it seems the writers noticed this and have avoided K-or-C names since: the next Pinks were Dana, Jen, Syd, Vida, Rose and Mia. Of course, later Yellow Rangers include Katie, Kelsey, and Kira, while Kat Manx had a brief stint as a Ranger, too.
  • Theme Table
  • Those Two Guys: Bulk & Skull, who incidently are the longest lasting cast members from Season 1 to Season 6, longer than any individual Power Ranger. The dynamic is being recreated in Samurai with Bulk returning and Skull's son Spike taking his dad's place. Cassidy & Devin in Dino Thunder also fit this trope.
  • Title Theme Tune: You will never see a season whose theme song does not constantly say the words "Power Rangers" in its lyrics.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Just for starters: Daredevil Kelsey and paramedic Dana, abrasive Air Force sergeant Taylor and gentle, borderline Sueish Team Mom Alyssa, streetwise orphan Z and rich model/pop star Syd, outgoing DJ Vida and shy filmmaker Madison (noticeably, these two are sisters). Most seasons with this dynamic will have an episode where the girls, who are always best friends, disagree about something and get into an epic catfight before they learn An Aesop about how much they mean to each other. Wannabe rockstar Cassie and girly cheerleader Ashley, who started the "tradition", had two.
  • Transformation Sequence (and how!)
  • Transformation Trinket: The morphers.
    • Super Wrist Gadget: Most early morphers. Dino Thunder was the last to have this type as the main morpher, though SPD, Operation Overdrive, Jungle Fury, and RPM all had one or two Rangers with one.
    • Cell Phone: Most later morphers are styled like this. Power Rangers in Space was the first, although it was only for the Sixth Ranger. Power Rangers Wild Force was the first to have the whole team's morphers be phones.
      • A bunch of these are half-phone, half-something else, making for some weird crosses at times. The list of other halves include cop badges (SPD), magic wands, a ticket punch (both Mystic Force), and calligraphy brushes (Samurai).
    • The only morphers that don't fall under either category are Mighty Morphin (belt buckles), Ninja Storm (an amulet ball for the Sixth Ranger), Jungle Fury (sunglasses for the core trio), and RPM (flight sticks for the Sixth Rangers).
      • The Black Box and Shogun Buckle from Samurai aren't based on CellPhones either, but only work when the Rangers are already morphed. Whether they count as a morpher or just a Super Mode device is up to debate.
  • Translation Matchmaking: Korea airs a Power Rangers series, but for the past several years it's been a Super Sentai dub unrelated to the American production.
    • For extra confusion points, the first two of these seasons have the exact same names as the US versions (Dino Thunder and SPD) and the third is really really close (Mystic Force vs Magic Force).
    • For extra extra confusion points, our Jungle Fury is their Wild Spirit and our Wild Force is their Jungle Force.
    • Super Sentai's Turboranger doesn't exist as Power Rangers but Power Rangers Turbo is Sentai's Carranger.
  • True Companions: Every Ranger team becomes one of these eventually, although some take longer than others to cement.
  • Two Girls to a Team: The series pretty much enforced this in the Saban era; while some Super Sentai seasons had two girls to begin with, others had The Smurfette Principle in effect, which was mitigated by making the male Yellow Ranger female. This practice is dropped for Power Trio seasons.
  • Uncanceled: Five times, firstly because MMPR was originally only commissioned for 40 episodes, but proved popular enough to be brought back, then it was supposed to end with In Space, but improved ratings saved the show, then after Wild Force, the show was saved by a change to a cheaper shooting location and new production company, and after Jungle Fury, when European investment got it another season, after it would've been cancelled due to low ratings. RPM had production problems, and should've been the final end. But then Saban bought the franchise back!
  • Unflinching Walk: Well, more like Unflinching Pose. Lots and lots of Unflinching Poses.
    • Done right in the Jungle Fury season finale, with a single Ranger marching into the evil base, knocking mooks back like flies with a swatter.
  • The Unmasked World: After "Countdown to Destruction" (for the most part, some of the public are in denial), SPD especially so.
  • The Verse
  • Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: Most of the time. Averted in a few seasons when Ranger duties become part of a career.
  • We Are as Mayflies: Particularly noticable. Aliens keep pretty quiet about how old they actually are, but Shayla still looked young after a 3000 year nap, Zordon was an old fogey when he was sealed in a pocket dimension 10,000 years ago, and the Sentinel Knight was already active and powerful when the continents were one, roughly 250 million years ago. Things get even more unfair when we see Thrax, a member of whatever long-lived species Rita and Zedd belonged to (10,000 years did nothing to them, age-wise) grow to full maturity within nine years. Its so pervasive that it was rather jarring to see non-humans that didn't live for pretty much ever in Mystic Force, where they lived on a human timescale.
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: Subtly played with; Angel Grove, Mariner Bay, Blue Bay Harbor, Reefside, San Angeles, and Ocean Bluff are either confirmed or stated to be in California, Silver Hills in Washington state, and Turtle Cove in Colorado. Newtech City, and Briarwood are not known, but are somewhere on the west coast. Corinth appears to be on an east coast (many believe Boston based on Easter Eggs).
    • Oddly, in "Return of the Green Ranger", Angel Grove's past appears to have British Redcoats running through town.
    • Panorama City in Samurai is an odd mashup of America and Japan, and we couldn't even confirm its name until three-quarters of the way through the season. On top of that, it's in a fictional state abbreviated "PR".
  • The Wiki Rule: The franchise has two wikis, The Morphing Grid (which also covers the original Super Sentai series) and Rangerwiki.
  • Wire Fu: Used extensively for some segments in the series, more so than Super Sentai and sister series Kamen Rider.
  • Word Power: Oh yes.
  • The World Is Always Doomed: Every year, there WILL be a giant monster attack on a major metropolitan area on the West Coast of the United States every week or so.
  • World of Ham: Less so than Super Sentai, but not less so enough to not still qualify.
  • You Look Familiar: Repeatedly since the move to New Zealand. Notably, Kelson Henderson has played or voiced the Plucky Comic Relief character in every season between SPD and Jungle Fury. Ironically, one reason the show features so many Fake Brits is to avoid hiring SAG actors.

... And pretty much every other trope you see in kids' shows. This show has been on for a Long Runners time.


Statler and Waldorf: Did you know this show has been cancelled five times and brought back?
Waldorf: What, is there an hermit fanboy as a network executive?
Both Do-ho-ho-ho-hoh!

Notes

  1. This season was completely financed by Disney, however it directly continues the Saban-tradition of team-ups, aired on Fox Kids for the first half, and carries over a lot of continuity so a lot of people classify this as a "Saban" season.
  2. Subverted by various mysterious protectors and/or am Aloof Ally who don't join the team and Double Subverted if they pass on the powers to someone who does.
  3. Not Disney's fault, blame Super Sentai
  4. before becoming an actual Black Ranger
  5. as both a Black and Green Ranger