Power Rangers Lost Galaxy was set to be a bold new era for the Power Rangers franchise. The first season to mostly break away from the ongoing story of the previous six seasons, Lost Galaxy had a completely fresh cast, an expensive two-part premiere episode, and a storyline that took a complete 180 away from the Japanese source material. Instead of taking any cues from the nature themed Gingaman season, Lost Galaxy instead told a space set story thanks to the success of Power Rangers in Space. The story centered on the space colony of Terra Venture attempting to find a new world for humanity.
This was going to be Power Rangers’ biggest push since the height of Mighty Morphin mania.
What we got was one of the most troubled productions in the history of the series. Huge plot holes littered the season, cast shake-ups resulted in having to reshoot entire episodes, and worst of all? Valerie Vernon, Kendrix the Pink Ranger, came down with leukemia and had to be written out of the show.
With all of these internal shake-ups it’s not surprising that the carefully laid plans the season started with were tossed out the window. However, thanks to the Hexagon Script Archive, we’ve gotten our hands on the original planned story arc for Power Rangers Lost Galaxy. Written in November of 1998, just as the first scripts were also being written for the season, this story arc document gives us a fascinating peak behind-the-scenes of what had been planned for the season before it went off the rails.
It should be noted that, as this story arc document states, much of these plans were “very broad and subject to change.” This was because the producers of the season hadn’t seen much of the footage from Gingaman which would help them shape the plot of the season. More than likely they only had access to a few of the early episodes and a few design documents and photos from the Japanese producers.
Remember, this was back in the day before copies of these episodes were encoded online mere minutes after they finished airing. The producers of Power Rangers had to rely on Toei, the company that produced Sentai, for all their material. The fact they had barely gotten any of the episodes by November of 1998, when Gingaman had already been on air since February of that year, gives evidence to just one of many reasons why the production of the series was so hectic. According to writer and producer Jackie Marchand, “their priority was not getting their (materials) to us.”
Zordon and the Quasar Sabers
While Lost Galaxy mostly tried to tell a story that stood on its own, some elements of past seasons did make it through. Bulk, the Megaship, and Alpha all found their way onto Terra Venture. However, one huge element of the past six seasons almost made it into the backstory of Lost Galaxy.
The story arc document states that the Quaser Sabers, the mystical sabers that gave the Rangers their powers, were “embedded in a massive stone thousands of years ago by Zordon himself.���
This is a huge revelation, as in the series the Quaser Sabers had simply been “placed” in the stone on Mirinoi. With Zordon being involved this would have continued his streak of always having a master plan for the Power Rangers. He knew of various power sources to upgrade the Rangers and even had Zords hidden on other planets. The idea of him keeping a power source of some kind in reserve on an alien planet is very much in character.
It also hints at some further adventures of Zordon that weren’t seen in the series. We know that he had been an active part of the war against Rita so perhaps during that war he had used the Quaser Sabers as an extra power source. Maybe the “warriors” that were mentioned throughout Lost Galaxy were actually soldiers of Zordon?
It also begs the question of how Zordon placed them in the rock. “Thousands of years ago” would have been during the period when Zordon was caught in a time warp, leading to his floating blue head appearance. Maybe it’s more then ten thousand years? It would have to be since the story arc document states that the sabers were placed by “Zordon himself” and not someone else.
It’s a shame this part of the backstory was never included. If it had, it would have lent even more mystery to the character of Zordon and would no doubt have been used as a jumping off point for more stories in mediums such as the Boom comics. There’s still time, Boom. Make it happen!
(It should be noted that the first draft of the premiere episode, “Quasar Quest,” has Maya state that “Zordon gave the swords ancient powers.”)
The GSA Gets a Proper Name
This is a small detail but one that’s curiously absent from the show. The group that is tasked with finding a new world for humanity is named the GSA, but we never learn what it actually stands for. The three letters are all over the colony and on the uniforms but it’s only in this document (and text from a long defunct Fox Kids website) that we finally learned what they stand for.
Galactic Space Alliance.
It’s an incredible name and, much like the Zordon info above, hints at a fascinating backstory. Is this an alliance that includes Earth and other alien races? Is it just an Earth alliance that hopes to bring more aliens into the fold? Is it the start of humanity trying to make a name for itself in the galaxy after the disastrous events of the Power Rangers in Space finale, “Countdown to Destruction?” Earth got its ass kicked by the United Alliance of Evil, so it’s no wonder the various governments of Earth would want to establish a presence in the galaxy to make sure that kind of destruction doesn’t happen again.
The document also states that the GSA “is responsible for running the space colony.” If the GSA is in charge of the day-to-day operations, who has the real control over it? The high command seen in several episodes? Another organization on Earth? We’ll never know, sadly.
Leo Was Left Behind On Earth
Well, for one episode anyway. In ‘Quaser Quest Part 1’, the Mirinite Maya travels through a portal from her home planet of Mirinoi. Mike, and Kendrix follow her back through, leaving Kai and Leo behind. Leo however quickly runs back and makes it through the small portal just before it closes, leaving Kai to commandeer the Megaship to find his way to Mirinoi.
In the story arc document everyone rushes into the fading “black hole” to Mirinoi but it closes before Leo can make it through. He’s forced to find another way through, which leads to him to being the one who commandeers the Megaship.
It’s a small change but would have lead to some great interaction between Leo and Damon, the Megaship’s mechanic and later Green Ranger. The two had a great rapport later in the season so it would have been fun to see it get off the ground earlier.
The Zenith Carrierzord Came In Later
In the show as aired the Ranger team got an upgrade of three new zords toward the middle of the season. The Stratoforce and Centaurus Megazord, along with the Zenith Carrierzord which held the individual component vehicles of those zords in its cargo bay. Originally controlled by Deviot (you can guess which side he’s on with that name) they were turned to the side of good thanks to the Rangers.
The story arc document however states that the Stratoforce and Centaurus Megazords would join the team’s arsenal mid-season and the Zenith Carrierzord would arrive near the end of the season. Chalk this one up to the producers of Power Rangers not having all the footage available and either assuming or being told by Toei that these zords would be showing up but not when.
A New Power-Up
A large story arc in the first half of Lost Galaxy concerned the team trying to find the Lights of Orion. An ancient power, the team eventually harnessed and used as a “power-up mode” that gave them enhanced armor and weapons.
The story arc document refers to this as “(the Rangers will) get energy that gives them the POWER-UP MODE.” However, it then states, “later, they’ll get fully decked-out when they receive their CONQUERING MODE.”
That… is fascinating. The name alone doesn’t sound like it fits in the world of Power Rangers. Perhaps it was just a temp name but… what was conquering mode supposed to be? There’s no equivalent in Lost Galaxy as it aired… however, thanks to Power Rangers Media Info on Twitter we learned that there were four “Conquering Power Rangers” figures released in the Lost Galaxy toyline. Thanks to grnrngr.com we also have photos of them!
It was fairly common for Bandai to make toy exclusive armor for the male Rangers but seeing that this was in the story document? Perhaps, early on, they had plans to incorporate “Conquering Mode” into the show! Would the Rangers have… conquered worlds with this power-up? That certainly gives some credence to the idea of the GSA going out and making alliances… no matter what.
A “Mysterious New Ranger”
Lost Galaxy received its traditional sixth Ranger in the form of the Magna Defender. However, another Ranger was set to join the team! The document keeps it very vague but it states “near (episode) #30, a mysterious new Ranger will debut, emerging from the shadows when duty calls.”
Who would this have been? There’s no “extra” Ranger or character in Gingaman and there’s no obvious American side character who could have taken up the mantle. Long time fans will of course wonder if this extra Ranger has something to do with the long standing fan rumor about the “Ancient Rangers” that were supposed to show up in Lost Galaxy.
To keep a very long story short, fans have said for years that Lost Galaxy had planned to use footage from the Sentai season Dairanger but this has been debunked by Jackie Marchand who stated in an interview with this writer that, “we were rolling on our own story with Lost Galaxy and there was so much going on in that season that we couldn’t shoe-horn (the Dairanger suits) in.” So put that fan rumor to rest.
This leaves the identity of this Ranger truly in the shadows. Another fan rumor has claimed this could have been the Phantom Ranger from Power Rangers Turbo but there’s been no confirmation on that. Perhaps it was simply a desire to create an exclusive original American Ranger that they finally accomplished with the Titanium Ranger in Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue.
A Totally Different Ending
The document states that they will resolve all the subplots that have been weaving throughout the season which include, “finding the new world, bringing Maya’s world back to life, and returning home to Earth.”
The first two happened at the end of the season as aired but returning to Earth? That was never part of the show! In fact Commander Stanton made it pretty clear that anyone who decided to board the space colony might never see Earth again. Was there a plan for some of the people to go back home? Would the Rangers have left “the new world” and returned back to Earth? Maybe just Leo would have, since he was originally a stowaway?
Or would Terra Venture have dropped off all the colonists and then returned back to Earth? That could be possible, it would make sense the GSA would want to get multiple trips out of such a big colony. Obviously in the show as aired it was made clear they didn’t have enough fuel to get home but that may not have been nailed down at this point in the planning.
As with many of the documents used in the creation of Power Rangers, this Lost Galaxy story arc document is endlessly fascinating. Power Rangers has always been a series that conjured up whole worlds and stories in fans minds with only the barest amount of information given in the show itself. A document like this, even if it may seem trivial to some, just adds more fuel to fans imaginations.
Power Rangers Lost Galaxy was beset with so many problems in production and the results of that has hurt the series in the minds of fans. This document gives a much-needed look into what could have been for the series and, while it’s fairly brief, gives us a peak into a world where it was able to tell its story unencumbered without any issues.
If you enjoyed this article, you might find our discussion of an unproduced episode of Lost Galaxy fascinating to read as well. It centers on one of the series’ biggest what if’s, Cassie as the Pink Lost Galaxy Ranger! You can find it here as part of our look at several unproduced Power Rangers episodes.
Shamus Kelley is a pop culture/television writer and official Power Rangers expert. Follow him on Twitter! He also co-hosts a Robotech podcast, which covers the original series and the new comics. Give it a listen! Read more articles by him here!