In case you somehow aren't aware, Saban's Mighty Morphin Power Rangers are a hot commodity at the moment. With a pending movie reboot on the way, this comic series from BOOM! has been a smashing success. With the #0 issue going to a second and third printing and #1 selling WELL OVER 100,000 copies, this flagship series has already spun off a Pink Ranger solo book. The hype caught my attention and it has not let me down.
Writer Kyle Higgins, artist Hendry Praseyta and the colors from Matt Herms are doing for the Power Rangers what Mark Waid and company did for Archie. This updated take on the Rangers origin story has the same charm the original TV series held, while providing a deeper look into the high schoolers behind the morphers. Much like Archie, it captures the tone that made the source material a beloved classic while giving the characters more room to breathe and be fully fleshed out. Praseyta and Herms deserse loads of credit because this issue is a visual feast. MMPR #2 opens with Billy and Trini working inside the Dragonzord. When we zoom out and see the Dragonzord resting underwater, it is such a flood of OHMYGOSHWOW nostalgia and joy that you have to pause for a minute to take it in.
Higgins also does a wonderful job with these characters. Who would have thought the Power Rangers have PARENTS or that they interact with other people in Angel Grove BESIDES Bulk, Skull and Ernie at the juice bar?!? THEY DO! Oh and they have feelings that can't be summed up in cliche statements! This issue really draws you in right away with the conversation between Billy and Trini aboard the Dragonzord about Billy's role on the team. And as Tommy continue to struggle against Rita Repulsa's control, his interactions with the Rita in his mind give us a glimpse at his struggle to just be part of the team. Higgins also does a nice job making the villains a bit more...villainous as Scorpina involves Tommy's MOTHER. If this is the type of story the movie reboot is looking to tell, I will be happy to enjoy it with my son.
The added fun of this book has been Steve Orlando's Ongoing Adventures Of Bulk And Skull. The cheese and nostalgia are both on full blast as Angel Grove's resident bumblers are at it again. The pair want to impress the ladies and decide the best way to do it is be heroes, like the Power Rangers! So they've caught themselves a Putty...but now they need armor. The high jinks ensue and the puns are aplenty.
The art for Bulk and Skull is pitch perfect as well. Corin Howell and Jeremy Lawson work well together setting the cartoony tone of the pair of loveable oafs. I think the best part is the clear separation between the art of the main issue and the art here. These are clearly meant to be stories taking place at 2 different times and from 2 different perspectives. Howell and Lawson show us the world how Bulk and Skull see it and it's a hoot.
If I were to offer one potential issue with the book, it would be a dependance on the reader's knowledge about a lot of the mythology. While the series is succeeding wildly by selling on nostalgia, I would like a few things a little more fleshed out for newer fans to the franchise. My son is really excited to read these books (once he gets through his current stack) so I may update this later on with his thoughts. He's 8, so ya know...prepare yourself for greatness.