This Power Rangers Dino Super Charge Review contains spoilers.
Power Rangers Dino Super Charge Episode 9
Forgiveness. It’s something we deal with every day. Do you forgive your boss for being a jerk? Do you forgive someone who cuts you off in traffic? Do you forgive your parents for not being perfect? Do you forgive your friends for hurting your feelings?
Yeah, I know that got really deep really quickly but I couldn’t help but think about it as I watched today’s episode. Let’s dig in, shall we?
We’ve all had things about our friends annoy us to no end. We don’t mention them because who wants to have an argument over something minor? Not many of us. So we let it continue and just accept it as part of their personality. Here, Shelby has accepted her best friend Erin is a liar. Its just who she is, apparently.
This is where the episode began to lose me. We are given no real reason to care about Erin as a character or why Shelby is still friends with her after so long. I mean sure, they have the cute triceratops song but that is immediately shown as a point of contention.
So okay, Erin is a bad friend. I’m totally down for that. She pretends to be the Pink Ranger. Okay, it’s basically like Stranger Ranger in Megaforce. Cool, it works a little better here because it isn’t some random guy. Awesome. Shelby can’t confront her because she can’t reveal she’s really the Pink Ranger. Alright, I’m down for that. Great. While I didn’t buy the friendship, this could be an awesome set up for a great Shelby moment. Standing up for herself and telling her friend off.
Then we get Keeper’s lesson of the episode, which basically boiled down to, “unless you tell someone they’re hurting your feelings, you really have no leg to stand on when complaining about them.”
That… Okay, I know the word problematic gets thrown out a lot these days, but this was incredibly problematic. On the surface I totally get it. We as human beings aren’t mind readers and we can’t always tell when what we’re doing is annoying/hurting someone. We sometimes need to tell people they’re acting a fool. The problem is that Shelby never does this. Erin figures out the lesson on her own, which kneecaps all the set up at the start.
By learning the lesson herself, Erin becomes the focal character instead of Shelby. This is a bad move, if only because we know we’re probably never going to see Erin again. Why give so much development to a guest character when Shelby is supposed to be the focus? Imagine if Shelby had confronted her, She didn’t have to reveal she was a Ranger, she could have just said, “You know you aren’t the Pink Ranger. Look me in the eye and tell me you are.” It would be a huge empowering moment for Shelby that we sadly don’t get.
Instead, we get Erin apologizing to the whole city. I’m okay with that, if only because I like it when characters take responsibility for their own actions. Shelby forgives her far too easily though. It’s all wrapped up in a minute and they’re besties again. To hit the lesson of forgiveness home a little better, Erin should have thought saying she was sorry would fix everything. It wouldn’t.
“So, we’re still besties forever, right Shelby?”“It’s gonna take awhile but this is a good first step.”
Having it not be wrapped up so easily would make the lesson much more powerful. Another angle the episode could have taken would be Shelby realizing that just because Erin has been her friend for so long doesn’t mean she has to stay friends. We aren’t going to see Erin ever again, so why not make that a focal part of the episode?
The Erin/Shelby plot was not the worst thing ever. I just think if they had given Shelby more of her own agency and had her as the focus of the forgiveness plot, it would have been amazing. As it stands, it was okay.
What was AMAZING was the villain side of things. Okay, so first off we see a monster making a grocery store run. That alone is astounding but then the Rangers attack him for… stealing? How do you know he stole it? What if he just wanted food? Villains have to eat to you know, Maybe he had no choice but to steal it because no one would take money from a monster. Yeah yeah, reading too much into it but isn’t it a fascinating story idea? A monster trying to buy some food!
Cinnamon, specifically, because Heckyl is apparently a cinnamon roll too pure for this world. Okay, not really, but I had to make the joke. The monster of the day, Halfbake, tries to make Heckyl cookies anyway but fails to gain his favor. Heckyl and Wrench laugh in his face. It endears me to this one off character way more then Erin! Halfbake actually gets kind of an arc through this episode where he wants to the chance to prove himself and fight the Rangers. He gets his wish when Heckyl uses the magna beam on him and while he doesn’t win, he still gave it his all. Long live Halfbake.
Besides that hilarious villain B plot, this episode demonstrates a lot of the problems Dino Super Charge has been having. Lots of good ideas set up but very weak pay off. Now that the season is back and will be airing episodes right through to the finale we’ll hopefully start to see some improvement.
Oh hey, while that triceratops song was fun and cute? I have a better song to cap off this episode.
– If this had been any other recent season, Erin’s actress would have been the Yellow Ranger.
– “We’ve got a giant problem. Get it?” I… What? I… No? I…. WHAT?!
– I am here for Kendall showing up more in fights.
– You know, there’s an interesting subext at play here. A white girl taking all the credits for the accomplishments of a black woman? Not something I ever see Power Rangers tackling, but still fascinating to read the episode that way.
Shamus Kelley is all about people in Power Rangers getting baked into food. If only it was a pizza! Follow him on Twitter!