‘MMPR’ #9 review

'MMPR' #9 art by Hendry Prasetya & Matt Herms
'MMPR' #9 art by Hendry Prasetya & Matt Herms
'MMPR' #9 cover art by Jamal Campbell
‘MMPR’ #9 cover art by Jamal Campbell
  • Written by Kyle Higgins
  • Illustrated by Hendry Prasetya
  • Colours by Matt Herms
  • Cover by Jamal Campbell

While Tommy and Jason face off against Black Dragon on the Moon, the rest of the Rangers seek a means to jump-start their powers and save their Zords from his influence! With Billy’s life on the line, will the Rangers overcome their greatest challenge or find defeat in the claws of this familiar foe?

Pickup your copy of ‘MMPR’ #9 at Comixology now!

I’ve been a little relaxed in reviewing ‘MMPR’ each month as it has been a series which I’ve often forgotten but loved from its first issue. It’s a series which raises an eyebrow when commuters see me reading it on the train. A series which also seems to make people do a really odd nostalgic smile.

Over the eight issues leading up to this one ‘MMPR’ has been able to create a credible name for itself. Part TV tie-in comic. Part action-drama series much like the original. What felt camp and in hindsight looked cheap on TV is able to take on an epic scale in comic form.

In terms of story I had no concern as to what Higgins could achieve with ‘MMPR’. His work on at DC Comics (‘Batman: Eternal’, ‘Batman Beyond 2.0’ etc…) have proven is abilities well. Here he has been able to give credibility to a children’s TV show.

Issue #9 finds the Rangers back on the up after a series of defeats. Higgins has been able to take the camp of Rita Repulsa and make her a serious threat to humanity. Part of this is down to the global scale he has introduced to the comics. The series isn’t just set in Angel Grove. With Rita and Black Dragon in control of the Zords several major cities across the world are in peril.

What Higgins has never forgotten is that ‘MMPR’ the TV series held at its core: family. There’s a palpably strong bond between the five original Rangers whilst Tommy sits on the periphery. This issue really serves to bring him in to the fold. We’ve seen all the original characters react to Tommy in different ways which has given more emotional resonance to the story. With Tommy sharing his powers with the other Rangers when things are at there worst it’s a moment of heroism which cements the team as a six piece. There are obvious metaphorical undertones of sharing issues over tackling them alone but its all presented very subtly.

The humanisation of Goldar is an interesting twist. His scenes with Billy are some of the smaller moments in this issue and will surprise fans of the classic franchise. Still it does add an extra dimension to him as a character. If Higgins can do something similar with Lord Zedd then I will be suitably impressed.

One last note on the story: Higgins is not afraid of a twist. There have been several opportunities to end story arcs with a finality which he has continually avoided. Though this issue bridges the gap between this current storyline and the next there is no ending. Only an immediate and intriguing jumping off point. Trying to keep this relatively spoiler free. I cannot wait to find out who Black Dragon really is and where Billy and Tommy have been transported to.

The artistic style of ‘MMPR’ is spot on. It’s covers are intriguing. This issue has a cover designed by Jamal Campbell which perfectly illustrates the sharing of the Green Ranger power between the six leads. Many modern comics use their covers to tease or misdirect. ‘MMPR’ has simply taken a moment from its story and depicted it through some epic artwork.

The illustrations by Hendry Prasetya and colours by Matt Herms also do the series the justice it requires. The colours of the rangers pop off the page. This issue is obviously very much slanted towards the colour green but costumes still feature the individual details to help tell who is who. The Zords still pop with their original colour schemes and landscapes are engaging.

The global nature of the story gives both Prasetya and Herms a chance to flex their muscles. Fans of the TV series are used to only a small number of locations: Ernie’s Juice Bar; the command centre and Angel Grove High. Seeing the Rangers placed across the world at well known landmarks just adds a huge amount of childish excitement to the series.

I also have to applaud the creative team for not choosing to go to great lengths representing the original ‘MMPR’ actors. Tie-in comics, particularly to films and TV series often miss the mark by trying to recreate actors facial expressions. What ‘MMPR’ does very well is recreate those personalities whilst picking out traits from the actors. It allows the reader to feel much more engaged with the story rather than detracting from it.

Verdict

‘MMPR’ #9 is absolute gold. Its got a brilliant, compelling story and excellent artwork. It’s not the best place to pick up this series as it falls at the end of an arc so go back a few issues before reading it.

5 stars

About Neil Vagg 1445 Articles
Neil is the GYCO Editorial Chief. He has a BA in Film & Tv and an MA in Scriptwriting; he currently works 9-5 as an office manager and 5-9 as a reviewer/web designer. He has been subscribing to comics for around nine years but has been reading them as long as he can remember. Favourite comics: Batman; Nightwing, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and All New X-Men Favourite films: Batman (any apart from & Robin); Star Trek Generations, Underworld, Beetlejuice Favourite TV shows: Fringe; Buffy, Arrow, TBBT, Being Human UK and Star Trek TNG